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Fearless

Help with Cockpit Graphics

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Hi all,Been searching frantically on the hope if I could find some info with graphics especially where the cockpit is concerned.I've purchased the Abacus Boeing 787 Dreamliner and installed it no probs whatsoever. Trouble is, the cockpit graphics hence instrumentation and hud display are very distorted. All my drivers are uptodate but I'm using a 19" widescreen monitor at 1440x900 resolution so all is stretched to cope with the widescreen set-up. I emailed the question to Abacus and got a quick reponse saying it would relate to an MSFS 2004 issue.1. Is MSFS 2004 widescreen compatible?2. Is there a way to fix it or is there a patch for it?My sys specs:Intel dual core 2 processor 2.4GHzGeForce 7500 256Mb GraphicsVista Home3Gb 667Mhz RamFS 2004 patched to the latest (I hope).Thanks in advanceFearless

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You can make your own panel adjustments with FS Panel Studio - $24.95 from Flight1. Great program. I have modified most all of my panels this way. I have a 1900x1280 24" monitor so the aspect ratio is the same as yours. There are very few panels out there that are wide screen. AVSIM has a modified Baron 58 wide screen panel for free. I have that one and it works nicely. Otherwise you have to adjust them yourself, sorry. I don't own the Abacus plane you mentioned or I would give you my modified bitmap and panel.cfg.

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dolph98 I was thinking about buying a View Sonic 26" WIDE SCREEN flatscreen monitor, res 1920 X 1200, just like yours. My question to you is, what do you see with a aircraft using a 2-D panel? Is it streached across the whole screen are does it look like a normal 4:3 ratio 2D panel with gray/black bars on each side of the panel? We always talk about what a wide screen monitor does to a 2D panel. What does it do to the scenery in a "spot" view? Thanks jerrycwo4PS: I saw the answer to most of my questions over at the "HARDWARE FORUM, but I'd love some info from dolph98 about how do you make a widescreen panel from a normal panel using "FS Panel Studio". I have this program but never did learn to work it. If I could make a widescreen panel from a standard one, then I could buy the three 26" WIDESCREEN monitors that I really would like to have. Like you, I have a LOT of planes but only regularly fly a few of them. Would you please tell me how to use the FS Panel Studio to convert a regular panel to a widescreen panel. I'd be happy to pay you for your time and effort. jerrycwo4

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Hi Jerry,The default 2D panels are stretched out in the X axis. Round gauges are now oval and it looks bad in my opinion. The widescreen does allow you to see more of the peripheral scenery than a square monitor does, that is one benefit. So once the panel is modified you get a truly wide view of the world. Three 26's would be unbelievable!The 3D cockpits are perfect without modification, I don't know why they aren't affected like 2D panels but there is a good technical reason. Well, to start with there is a forum on AVSIM specifically for panel design and that is where you should ask all your panel questions so it's fair to others and the admins don't get too upset. The forum is called "MSFS Aircraft and Panel Design Forum" and it is inhabited by some nice folks that are much more advanced at it than I. I have linked a couple of topics below that you should read and absorb, that'll get you started.http://forums.avsim.net/dcboard.php?az=sho...id=35810&page=3http://forums.avsim.net/dcboard.php?az=sho...=6&topic_page=1Both have very good advice and they were enough to get me going.That being said, I learned by trial and error. Make a backup of your panel file main.bmp or whatever its called first. You have nothing to lose that way. Also backup your panel config. Open the original in MSPaint and learn how to make it wider. Not taller. Leave the Y the same, stretch the X axis only. Then you can do various things to fill in the mssing pieces. Personally, I copy/paste a portion of the panel in the blank area on the right side or the left side,depending on the panel. That gives me more room to place some other add-on gauges if I am in the mood. You then have to use Panel Studio to adjust the gauge size and move the gauges back into the position they should be in. It is a little time consuming but it is well worth it. I had to fly one night and tweak a panel the next night, that sort of thing. I will watch the panel design forum for your posts and offer any specific help I can unless others have better explanations. You can also try to send a PM through here to me and I would be glad to give you my email addie and we can save the AVSIM bandwidth if you'd like. That way I could send you some .jpg's of my work and some ideas.Good luck,dolph

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dolphThanks so much for the time and effort for your answer. I was really hoping that I could go for 3 X 26 widescreen, but I noticed that I could use my 22" (4:3) ViewSonic and either get 2 -24" WS( the vertical distance would be .7 inches taller than my ViewSonic, or get 2 X 22" WS and the vertical distance would be .7 inches shorter than the vertical distance on my ViewSonic and ALL of the 2-D panals would show correctly on my 22" ViewSonic (4:3) monitor.Which way do you think would be the best, in your opinion? (Thanks again for the help.) The above way using my 22" ViewSonic as the CENTER monitor or go for 3 X 26" WS monitors jerrycwo4

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Hi Jerry,That answer only took a minute really; now there is the time that YOU have to provide to do this work, but it is fun and satisfying to look at your work during each and every flight. Then you start finding new instruments or gadgets that you want to add, and on and on. To answer your question of what would I do, I would go for the 3x26 if I could swing it financially and do what it takes to make it look right, namely rework the panels as I already do. I see some of the scenarios of multiple monitors and it makes me envious. Once you fly a sim with that equipment you won't want to go back. In fact, there are some cool FPS games on the market that take advantage of multiple monitors. My first FPS, Doom, would have been so cool to play that way!Plus, some current developers of addon aircraft are providing widescreen 2D panels already, and I would hope that the trend will continue since it will be hard to find a 4:3 monitor (CRT) someday. Widescreens are mainstream already.I really love my widescreen and I have to work with a 21" CRT monitor at work, the difference is night and day. Some at work have two flatscreen monitors, not sure of the dimensions, and I think I could do with that if they could budget it. But things are tight these days.I will be glad to help you out, maybe even modify the .bmp for you if you send it to me, just PM me or we will figure out another way to communicate privately.Tonight, I am going to start on the Beech King Air 350 panel since I want to use it in a twin turboprop I picked up here at AVSIM. If it isn't illegal, I would be glad to give you the .bmp and panel.cfg to try on your monitor. Then you could compare these files and see what I did.Dolph

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Dolph, this is really a hard one. I read all of the "links" with you and the other person that was explaining things to you. Wow, it seemed way over my head. At 69, I dont understand things quite as good as I used to do. It's a lot harder for me to do and understand. Thanks for the offer to help so much. I'll have to decide to rework all of my panels if I buy 3 X 26" or fly all of my aircraft with my 22"(4:3) VewSonic and 2 x 26 Wide Screens for the right/left view. It will be a month or so before I decide. Thanks again for you special help, I know it takes time to type all of this. jerrycwo4

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Jerry- Hey, you're just a kid! Heck, I just passed 76 & am still having fun!If you were to use your existing 22"(4:3) VewSonic plus 2 - 26" Wide Screens for the right/left views, I think I can guarantee you will be very pleased. That should give you a perspective at least 50" wide and a Field of View of 135

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Jerry,Just do it. Or do as Alex said, you won't be sorry. Do you have a line on a Triple Head To Go or what do you plan on using to run your three monitors? I don't know much about the THTG but I have a friend that has one (that's where I first experienced the 3 monitor bit) and I can get questions answered from him if you want. I have attached a picture of the Beech King Air I did Sunday night. Took extra long because I captured the left side of the virtual cockpit and blended it in. This should be easier for me the next time (C182 coming up next) but it's worth it and the extra view of the runway on the left provides for a much smoother touchdown.Dolph

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Here's a pic of the PMDG Beech 1900D. Notice that I extended the right side on this one to make room for more gauges. I think I like the extended left side as on the King Air much better.

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After buying a widescreen moniter I more or less figured I had to switch over to VC views, and did.I only use 2D panels with the W key to see no panel at all.One thing sometimes possible is to stretch a 2D panel and fill in with a radio stack or something.I heard that TrackIR works with 3 monitors in VC panel mode, hopefully there is or will be a youtube vid showing TrackIR on 3 screens in VC.

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>You can make your own panel adjustments with FS Panel Studio>- $24.95 from Flight1. Great program. >>I have modified most all of my panels this way. I have a>1900x1280 24" monitor so the aspect ratio is the same as>yours. >>There are very few panels out there that are wide screen.>AVSIM has a modified Baron 58 wide screen panel for free. I>have that one and it works nicely. Otherwise you have to>adjust them yourself, sorry. >>I don't own the Abacus plane you mentioned or I would give you>my modified bitmap and panel.cfg.I have that program, but I don't know hot to make the adjustments you metioned. Can you give me some advice?Regards,

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>After buying a widescreen moniter I more or less figured I>had to switch over to VC views, and did.>>I only use 2D panels with the W key to see no panel at all.>>One thing sometimes possible is to stretch a 2D panel and fill>in with a radio stack or something.>>I heard that TrackIR works with 3 monitors in VC panel mode,>hopefully there is or will be a youtube vid showing TrackIR on>3 screens in VC.>

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Hi,My advice: Make a backup of your panel.cfg first. The program will make backups for you each time you save unless you turn it off in settings (which I did) but it's best to name one yourself so you know where to find it if you goof up.Don't forget that you need to modify the bitmap to make it wider first, or this won't work.Then, it is pretty straight forward using FSPS. The program itself is very easy to use.I did one panel by had at first. You have no idea what a pain that was to change a number, then reload and see it wasn't right, then change it again, repeat. Over and over. That's why I invested the 25 bucks.I guess the hard part is getting the bitmap to your liking. Moving the gauges is easy but time consuming.Dolph

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I can't stand VCs for some reason. The perspective is way off to me. Yep, that's the ticket. Nice. Did you copy/flip/past the right side in that bitmap? That's what I did on some panels.Yeah, my Cessna 182 is exactly like yours, Radio stack filling in the right. I will do it more like your first shot when time permits or when I get the urge to fly a 182. That's the way it will work, I will do it out of necessity.

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>Hi,>>My advice: Make a backup of your panel.cfg first. The program>will make backups for you each time you save unless you turn>it off in settings (which I did) but it's best to name one>yourself so you know where to find it if you goof up.>>Don't forget that you need to modify the bitmap to make it>wider first, or this won't work.>>Then, it is pretty straight forward using FSPS. The program>itself is very easy to use.>>I did one panel by had at first. You have no idea what a pain>that was to change a number, then reload and see it wasn't>right, then change it again, repeat. Over and over. That's why>I invested the 25 bucks.>>I guess the hard part is getting the bitmap to your liking.>Moving the gauges is easy but time consuming.>DolphSo I have to make the bitmap wider first?Do you have any experience data for me? Like width/height setting?Regards,

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"Yeah, my Cessna 182 is exactly like yours, Radio stack filling in the right. I will do it more like your first shot when time permits or when I get the urge to fly a 182. That's the way it will work, I will do it out of necessity."The first shot of mine that you mentioned is simply the VC panel. All I did was hit the s key and there it was!FSPS does help some in modifying VC as well as 2D panels, but its more helpful with 2D's. Those natural point videos show how VC flying can work well even with 3 monitors, I wasn't sure, now I am!Assigning keys to panning works great in 2D panels, the panel stays still but the scenery seen through the windscreen (which is 3D) pans up or down, handy for seeing the RY's way below when landing.

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Oh haha, I thought it was your 2D "art". That shows you how often I use VCs. Didn't even recognize it.

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Well, I generally start by opening the bitmap with Paint and pressing CTL E. That gives the x by y size of the file. Since panels vary in size, you need to calculate the 5:4 size. So, take for instance a bitmap that is 1024 x 768 to start with. I want it to be about 20% wider so it scrunches down in the sim. 1200 or 1280 works nicely. Then change the 1024 to 1200 and resize the picture to fit the new background. This is not exact and the experts here are probably laughing their patukis off at me but it works and I have had some excellent results. If you try this and it doesn't look quite right in the sim, delete the file, restore the original, and start over. I am now working on the Flight1 Pilatus PC-12 which I just purchased last night. I will post a pic of it when I get done, should be this evening sometime. Dolph

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Here's my Flight 1 Pilatus PC-12 2D cockpit rework. It took awhile more than I thought. Finished V1 tonight. For V1, I captured the VC and opened the windows with opaque then repositioned the gauges. V2 will be their regular 2D panel redone by lengthening the left side. I have that .bmp half done but I'm having trouble meshing the bottom left corner to look right. The picture really doesn't do it justice, the .bmp is hi-res at 2304x1536 all scrunched down so I can upload it within Avsim's limits.I haven't even flown the plane since I purchased it night before last. Tonight I plan to read the manual and go for a putt.dolph

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Well that's an interesting way to always get a pretty good 2D panel out of the VC. I hadn't thought of using that method before.

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Have you ever played with resizing the 2D panel this way?Open up the panel.cfg, and add these lines:window_size= 1.000, 0.783 // use 78.3% of the screen widthwindow_pos= 0.000, 0.220Example of the default 737-400 panel.cfg(Window00)file=Main_640.bmpfile_1024=Main_1024.bmpsize_mm=640position=7visible=1ident=MAIN_PANELwindow_size=1.000, 0.783 <----------addedwindow_pos=0.000, 0.220 <----------addedProblem is, you now have to adjust your viewpoint in the panel.cfg to your liking as you lose some outside window view. But the guages are now round, perfect for "IFR".Lee

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