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olderndirt

request for advice

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As one of the walking wounded who lost his medical, I'm thinking about a plan B. My thought is FS2004, perhaps, to keep the juices flowing. We have a Dell with 2.3G single core, 2G DDR2 RAM and the standard issue video/graphics. What do I need for the computer, to insure performance, and what is the concensus ideal controller for this program? Another question. The Dell came with a DVD+/-rw rather than CDrw. Will this load the CD's that come in the FS2004 package?

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>> What do I need for the computer, to insure performance...You need a decent cpu-memory-graphic combination. Your cpu can handle fs2004, 2g memory is absolutely ok, but if by "standard issue video/graphic" you mean on-board graphic, that is usually not enough for fs requirements.>> The Dell came with a DVD+/-rw rather than CDrw. Will this load >> the CD's that come in the FS2004 package?Yes it will.>> what is the concensus ideal controller for this program?I'm not sure what do you mean by controller. A joystick or yoke plus peddals?

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Sounds promising. To clarify, are you saying that with the addition of a decent graphics card, I'm good to go? If so, which should I be looking at? A joystick would be my first choice - been admiring the Saitek X52 as a possibility.

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I'm running FS2004 on a 5+ year old 'puter AND displaying triple views across three monitors. (AMD XP2200/1.8Ghz, 2GB RAM, 2GeForce FX5200 video cards. Your machine looks like it would run FS9 fairly well. The secret with any 'puter is to retard FS settings until you are happy with the smoothness of the sim.We all tend to have different criteria for what is important or acceptable in Flight Sim. I'll make the case that top priority is a field of view that compares with what a real pilot sees.The basic FS view spans only a 45

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An impressive set-up. The fact that my wife considers the 'puter hers will make whatever I end up with much more portable than yours. I'm leaning more to a stick and throttle since that's been most of my flying experience and will have to make do with "tunnel vision". Right now I need to be pointed at what will help to improve what I've got and, in keeping with the times, money is a factor.

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As someone who lost his medical 11 years ago, my sincere condolences. FS9 has been a life saver for me. I think you'll find the same thing.Bob

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For a while it looked like this 'Sport Pilot' thing might be an answer but, as with all things FAA, too many hoops to be jumped through.

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-----"and, in keeping with the times, money is a factor."-----------------Oldern'- my intent in responding was just that. FS9 will run quite satisfactorily on just about any computer from the past five years- and including with multiple monitors. With my budget of only $100 a year for simming, that's why I've made a hobby researching "wide horizon"- which really costs nothing. Used CRTs and 2-3 yr old video cards are giveaways nowadays. Watch the used websites for Flight Sim stuff like sticks/yokes etc.(I solved the His/Hers problem some years ago by getting m'lady, her own laptop and giving her the spare BR for sewing. In turn, I got exclusive use of a 48" wide corner in the master bedroom!!! I told her that simming was an excellent preventive for Alzheimer's. At nearly 77, seems to be working- I think!)Regards Alex Reid

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AlexThough I claim to be older'ndirt, it appears yours is seven years older - hope mine holds up. We do have another box with CPU, drives etc, an older Dell 2400, so I'll see if its Gigs and whatnot are up to scratch. Like you, I may get 'my own little corner of the room' and find out if flying a box proves beneficial. Do you by chance have any specific used equipment websites you could pass on? I'll give it the old Google but sometimes that's just an exercise in wasting time.Cheers,Dave Ronaldson

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Dave- For starters, check out Swap Meet Forum right here on AVSIM.In Canada there's a network of "Used" websites- called "Used-City Name". I would guess something similar exists almost everywhere. Try googling "Used & your city name".Currently in Used Victoria there is a listing for a Matrox digital "Triple Head to Go" plus 3 LCD monitors for C$650.Also make the acquaintance of local computer shops for junk box stuff like video cards & CRT monitors. If possible, shoot for 2GB of RAM memory in your 'puter.You will find that the flight sim airplanes work not badly, but add-on planes generally are far superior in completeness and performance.While the add-ons use a bit more computer horsepower, I can run PMDG 747 (perhaps the most demanding of all) quite satisfactorily and smoothly on my 5 yr old "Smithsonian" class machine. (AI low, Autogen off and Scenery Complexity slider @ midpoint).Finally, a half hour with Flight Sim and you are likely to be quite addicted! And the repairs for a hard landing are very inexpensive!!Alex Reid

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AlexThanks for the input. Both Dells have 2G RAM - not sure of the chip in the 2400, all it says is Intel. Another flat screen seems necessary - not enough room for the old CRT. How about power supply wattage? Been reading some scary stuff about 400W being a low minimum whereas our's say only 200W.You mentioned Victoria - a beautiful city. Been there a couple of times, done Butchart Gardens and the bus tours. Last time, with my two English sisters - they were impressed.Cheers,Dave

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With respect to the Sport Pilot approach, having lost your medical - you would need to regain it. Depending on your particular disqualification though, you may re-qualify under a special issuance - and you only need to do this once. Most disqualifying conditions are subject to re-approval by following the correct procedures and providing prescribed documentation. From that point on, you only need to maintain a valid driver's license as evidence of your fitness to operate a motor vehicle, and of course take the appropriate biennial flight review. You need not return for any FAA medical examination as long as you remain in the light sport arena. You probably already know all of this, but I though I'd offer some encouragement just the same. Good Luck.Leon

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Dave- if you start up your machine, go to Control Panel then System- it will tell you processor & operating system. The latter is likely Windows XP. Regardless, if the machine is less than 6 years old it should run FS 2004, Century of Flight. As mentioned previously, you will likely have to retard some of the FS settings to get it to run smoothly.I wouldn't worry about power supply- most of those problems seem to relate to newer high powered video cards, processors and extra RAM for FSX. I got along for years with a 300W PS- even running 3 monitors.When you get FS started, click on HELP in the top Menu Bar. Tons of info there for new simmers and old too! (Like us.)Don't throw out the CRT- you may yet want it for a second monitor!!!Check the AVSIM On Line Store here or a good local computer store to see what they offer in the way of controllers. Joysticks are popular with helicopter and military pilots, yokes seem preferred with jets and GA aircraft. Pedals are certainly desirable but FS has a setting to not require them.Learn to fly with the default FS planes before worrying about add ons.Boy, I can still remember struggling to land the Cessna at Meigs airfield in Chicago. That was a milestone- I was hooked! (wow- 15 years ago)Let us know how it's going! Lots of us happy to answer questions. Alex ReidDreamFleet Bonanza Over Vancouver Isl.- nearing Victoria Intl- CYYJ.http://forums.avsim.net/user_files/194851.jpg

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Thanks for all the advice so far. Looks like I'll be going with the wife's old Dell 2400 - Celeron 2.4G 2G RAM. This has PCI only video card slots so I'm looking at a GeForce FX5200 PCI which may require more power than the 200W presently installed. Any thoughts on these two items and anything else needed, other than the loaded FS9 program and a suitable flight controller, to get this thing off the ground?Thanks for all the advice so far. Looks like I'll be going with the wife's old Dell 2400 - Celeron 2.4G 2G RAM. This has PCI only video card slots so I'm looking at a GeForce FX5200 PCI which may require more power than the 200W presently installed. Any thoughts on these two items and anything else needed, other than the loaded FS9 program and a suitable flight controller, to get this thing off the ground?

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Thanks for all the advice so far. Looks like I'll be going with the wife's old Dell 2400 - Celeron 2.4G 2G RAM. This has PCI only video card slots so I'm looking at a GeForce FX5200 PCI which may require more power than the 200W presently installed. Any thoughts on these two items and anything else needed, other than the loaded FS9 program and a suitable flight controller, to get this thing off the grounDave-I'm not sure how well the Celeron will work with FS- it's probably going to be marginal The FX5200 is the same as my PCI card- very good older vid card. 200w power supply may be a bit light- but try it. Talk to a local computer store about controllers- they may know of some used ones as well as used computers that may be more suitable. You might be surprised at the low prices for this stuff. However the price we pay for older hardware is turning down some FS settings to try to achieve reasonable smoothness. A local shop may be able to put you in touch with an FS simmer near you for initial help to get going.Alex Reid

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AlexLooks like the old 2400 will be a doorstop again. Am shopping around for a used P4 machine so we'll see how it goes.

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AlexLooks like the old 2400 will be a doorstop again. Am shopping around for a used P4 machine so we'll see how it goes.
AlexLooks like the old 2400 will be a doorstop again. Am shopping around for a used P4 machine so we'll see how it goes.

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