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A FS2Crew 737 Voice Review by Andy Ralls

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FS2Crew user Andy Ralls from the UK has submitted the following FS2Crew Voice review.I think it's pretty fair and objective.Andy writes:"Colour me sceptical. I've used and abused several voice recognition packages over the years to enliven various sims, and I've had my share of frustration as well as immersion. However, I've always been left with the feeling that voice recognition, relying as it does on the MS SAPI, was just shy of being ready for showtime. In addition, the aural feedback to voice interaction is either non-existant or machine-generated. FS2Crews' implementation seemed at first to be another galant attempt to fill the niche, but also seemed to be destined to add to the eventual disappointment and frustration that Voice Recognition usually leaves the user with. However, I've changed my opinion, won over by the level of fidelity (as much as anyone can be faithful using a default aircraft) and relative depth of this product. There's something profoundly satisfying about calling out checklist responses with just that degree of authoritative inflection enjoyed by the self-confident aircraft captain about to take to the air. There's something decidedly impressive about calling out instructions during the frenetic moments of take-off and climb out in a modern jet flight deck and having them acted upon and verbally acknowledged with alacrity. Ultimately, though, there's something very serious happening when you forget you're sitting on your own, running a flight sim on a computer, and you mentally place yourself in the seat of your would-be alter-ego. Whenever I've used FS2Crew products in the past, it was hard to experience the suspension of disbelief that most sim-flyers crave. Pressing a key or joystick button was a small does of reality-injection that continually suspended the suspension, so to speak. Why is this different? Well, the percentage of voice recognition is no different...there's still the odd phrase that goes astray and needs repeating, but it's about the same level of instances you might say 'excuse me?' in a normal conversation. What's different is that the response back is completely human and contextualised so that you temporarily accept the reality of the responce. No mechanical MS Mike robots here. It still ain't perfect, but it's by far the best attempt made to date to integrate voice recognition into the FS mainstream and the potential for this concept in use with a high-end, complex third-party aircraft is enormous. I recommend the product unreservedly. I'm not a huge fan of FSX (despite running on a i7 platform) and I wouldn't normally touch a default aircraft with a ten-foot pole. Since downloading this, I've flown nothing else."

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