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Water - my recommendations

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Hi all,I will start by stating that I take no credit for these recommendations as some have already been mentioned briefly in the odd other post in this forum. However, many of you may still be struggling and have not yet achieved the ideal combo. So, I thought it might be useful if I detail my current installation which I find approaches perfection and continues to give me the greatest pleasure.There are still some issues, mainly to do with the various night reflections, but until wizards like Daniel Buechter continue to work their magic I have contented myself with what we have available to date.First, the files you will need (all available here from the library)Johan de Vries and Ed Truthan:oceansfx.zipoceanstx.zipofx20sa.zipBill Lyons:fs9wat2a.zip (the file you require is called 'InstlWat2.zip' and is contained within the parent archive).Daniel Buechter:new_waves3.zip (NOT the dxt version)The files in this archive are larger in size than in the 'dxt' version but, IMHO, look much nicer and don't seem to hit performance noticeably on my system.Installation procedure:Backup the 13 x env_*.bmp files in the Flight Simulator 9SceneryWorldtexture folder.I recommend you extract all files from their zip archives to a temporary location. It's easier to identify what goes where and allows you to delete files that are not needed prior to installation.1. Install OceanFX 2 - FS2004 (from ofx20sa.zip) and create a shortcut for easy access in the future.This program acts as a convenient front end that allows you to choose and install a Waveset, Swell Direction and Seafloor Appearance. It also allows you to return to the FS2004 defaults should you so wish. You won't ;)Make your choice, install and exit.2. Install the 11 x 'env_*.bmp' files from 'InstlWat2.zip' by cutting and pasting into the Flight Simulator 9SceneryWorldtexture folder and overwrite the originals. 3. Install the 6 x 'env_*.bmp' files from 'new_waves3.zip' by cutting and pasting into the Flight Simulator 9 SceneryWorldtexture folder and overwrite the originals. Yes, some of these files will overwrite Bill Lyon's files, but rather than pick out the specific files to install this is just an easier way to achieve what we are after. These cover dawn, dusk, highnoon, lowsun, midsun and overcast. 4. After you have extracted 'new_waves3.zip' to a temporary location you will note a file called 'OceanHeightField.bmp' in the texture folder. This file should be cut and pasted into the Flight Simulator 9Texture folder (Backup the original first).Daniel has also provided an alternative file as described in his 'readme.txt' file but I would try the 'OceanHeightField.bmp' in the texture folder first before trying the other. 5. Fire up the Sim and set Terrain Detail to 'Land Only' and Water Effects to 'High'.Apart from some of the best reflection effects I have seen to date, the water textures at times do appear quite uncanny with very convincing cloud reflections and in many places you often feel you are looking below the surface towards the sea floor! As stated earlier, I feel the night reflection effects could benefit from more work as you are still aware of that irritating cyclical pattern spreading across the water surface. During the daytime this is now barely noticeable. It just looks great :)Try a late afternoon flight (say 1000-2000ft) low and slow over water and look back towards the setting sun and tell me that all this was not worth it!Try a flight around midday with scattered clouds from St Just UK, fly on a southerly heading and admire the breakers on the beach beyond the cliffs with the rolling Atlantic waves stretching out behind. Look down and see the sun's reflection sparkling below and those cloud reflections slowly drifting by on the surface of the waves.My heartiest congratulations to all the authors mentioned. Enjoy!Mike :-waveP4 2.4GHz (400FSB), 1Gig PC2100 DDR Crucial, ATI Radeon 9800 Pro 128MB (Omega 2.4.96c), Hyundai ImageQuest Q17 17" Monitor (1280x1024x32), Gigabyte GA-8IRXP MoBo, Ultra-Quiet PSU 400W, WinXP Home (SP1), DirectX 9.0b

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It's not that I don't trust you Mike but how about posting a screen shot of all this stuff working together? The reason I ask is I've tried a lot of things like this and more often then not I end up going back to the original textures because of one problem or another or because my idea of what looks right just doesn't agree. TonyDigital-Flight

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Mike,Thanks so much for your recommendations. I thought I had improved my water textures to the best I could get already and I did not want to play around with them anymore. Well, I am glad I did anyway after reading your advice.Attached two screen shots. The first shows the situation I had before, the second shot shows the result after following your recipe. Thanks so much. The same, of course, applies to the authors of all packages I used.Best regards,HenriBefore:http://forums.avsim.net/user_files/51685.jpgAfter:http://forums.avsim.net/user_files/51686.jpg

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Hi Henri,Glad to have been of some help :)Hey, that second screen capture looks gorgeous - where is it? I've just got to visit.These RealAir machines sure do get around, don't they ;)Mike :-wave

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Hi Mike,The scenery is St. Maarten, Netherlands Antilles, default FS2004 scenery. And yes, these RealAir planes do get to see some parts of the world. In fact I have not been flying anything besides the SF.260 and Decathlon in the last few weeks.Cheers,Henri

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Thanks Mike! Tried your suggestions and for the first time I was able to turn my water effects to high and not have my pc go to it's knees.Will

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Mike,I'm not sure how to phrase this question, but here goes...Do these changes give me regionalised water or if I implement the change as per the St Maarten pic below, will it give me the same ocean floor in say off the coast of Alaska?The photos look stunning by the way. Thanks for the suggestions.:-beerchugChris Porter:-outtaPerthWestern Australia

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Hi Chris,I confess I'm as surprised as you! My own pictures were taken around the UK and, as you have noted, the appearance is quite different and definitely in keeping with the way it should look.Now, I've just completed a hop from St Maarten to St Barthelemy Is. and to say I was gobsmacked with what I was seeing en route is the understatement of the year :)So, the answer to your question must be yes, this installation may well give you regionalised water. However, at his stage I would encourage caution as it is equally likely that MS have given this area special attention. The detail seen on the islands does seem to support this view. Further exploration around the world is needed before a definitive answer can be given. Meantime, I think we can safely say that my 'recipe' is a worthy compliment and, indeed, seems to enhance these localised ocean textures.On the other hand, I think we may well owe a great debt of thanks to Ed Truthan and Johan de Vries as I am pretty sure what we are seeing are textures installed by OceanFX 2. It may be that the ocean textures vary much as the land textures do according to the dictates of landclass. This is all speculation, of course ;)Cheers!Mike

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Henri, Mike,Thanks for your responses. I am certainly going to give this a try.As I am currently on my 4th Around the world flight (see the link below) and this is using the low and slow method :-) , one of the things that I have noted previously is the requirement for some more "regionalised" coastlines and waterscapes. I hope that this will indeed provide it.Thanks again for your efforts,Chris Porter:-outtaPerthWestern AustraliaMy "Around the World 4" flight pagehttp://members.iinet.net.au/~portercbp/fly...e%20World_4.htm

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I've just looked again at the OceanFX 2 Help file and I feel I should revise my previous response.My reference to the landclass analogy has to be wrong (although this could be a good idea to implement in FS2006). In fact, it would appear that the appearance is ours to control.We have three options under 'Seafloor Appearance' in OceanFX 2, viz. Default, Deep Water and Tropical Water. The fact that I saw all this splendour during my flight tends to support the view that this is indeed a local MS enhancement. Ed Truthan's Ocean textures along with Daniel Buechter's modified reflection effects do seem to improve the appearance very nicely, so, in that sense, provide a very worthwhile complimentary enhancement to the original textures.I may still be a little off base here and it would be interesting if either Daniel or Ed (if he is watching ;)) would chip in to help us out.Mike

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Hi Mike,>We have three options under 'Seafloor Appearance' in OceanFX>2, viz. Default, Deep Water and Tropical Water. The fact that>I saw all this splendour during my flight tends to support the>view that this is indeed a local MS enhancement.Does this mean we select the ocean textures on a flight by flight basis dependent upon where it is we are flying?Cheers and thanks,Chris Porter:-outtaPerthWestern Australia

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Hi Chris,"Does this mean we select the ocean textures on a flight by flight basis dependent upon where it is we are flying?".....yep, I'm now sure that is correct. In my case I spend a lot of time flying around the west coast of Scotland and it is great to be able to setup the swell direction to match the prevailing westerly wind in that region. In addition, we are also able to match the Waveset with the current weather conditions in the area in which you are intending to fly - anything from dead calm to heavy wind (7 choices in all if you don't include the default option). Johan's OceanFX 2 front end makes the chosen installation completely foolproof and quick so there is really no deterrent to switching around to your heart's content.Just make sure you have installed OceanFX 2 - FS2004 correctly. It is vital that the two files 'oceansfx.zip' and 'oceanstx.zip' are placed as is in the OceanFX 2Zip Files folder, otherwise it will not work. Do NOT extract the files from these archives.As I stated before we owe these guys a great debt of thanks for their efforts on our behalf. The water appearance has been one aspect of the sim that has bugged me since its release. Now I am happy, apart for the reservations expressed in my original post - Daniel, where are you?Cheers,Mike :-wave

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All,I'm drooling to try this out, but have a question first- does the OceanFX program continue to run during flight sim, and thus drain resources / FPS, or is it just a "set up" program that closes out and has no effect on FS performance?Any info appreciated, thanks.Best,Joel

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Hi, "does the OceanFX program continue to run during flight sim, and thus drain resources /`It`s only a batch installer program, you have to close the utility after your installation of the water and run fs2004, OR you even don`t need to have the utility, you can download the water texture zip files and install them manually in fs2004.Clarification:The ocean fx water will have better performance then the default fs2004 since, the default fs2004 water files are 171 kb each, and the ocean water fx addons are 43kb each. (in fs2002 it was 43kb default also)The only things that`s are not 100% compatible buts works is the animation fx, since this was made for fs2002 the water_detail stop 01 to 16 and fs2004 have from 01 to 31.ThanksChris Willis[link:fsw.simflight.com/FSWMenuFsSim.html]Clouds And Addons For MsFs

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wow, I just did this to my water.. amazing! No FPS hit over having normal water with no detail. Looks great to boot.

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>Hi all,>>I will start by stating that I take no credit for these>recommendations as some have already been mentioned briefly in>the odd other post in this forum. However, many of you may>still be struggling and have not yet achieved the ideal combo.>So, I thought it might be useful if I detail my current>installation which I find approaches perfection and continues>to give me the greatest pleasure.>>There are still some issues, mainly to do with the various>night reflections, but until wizards like Daniel Buechter>continue to work their magic I have contented myself with what>we have available to date.>>First, the files you will need (all available here from the>library)>>Johan de Vries and Ed Truthan:>oceansfx.zip>oceanstx.zip>ofx20sa.zip>>Bill Lyons:>fs9wat2a.zip (the file you require is called 'InstlWat2.zip'>and is contained within the parent archive).>>Daniel Buechter:>new_waves3.zip (NOT the dxt version)>>The files in this archive are larger in size than in the 'dxt'>version but, IMHO, look much nicer and don't seem to hit>performance noticeably on my system.>>Installation procedure:>>Backup the 13 x env_*.bmp files in the Flight Simulator>9SceneryWorldtexture folder.>>I recommend you extract all files from their zip archives to a>temporary location. It's easier to identify what goes where>and allows you to delete files that are not needed prior to>installation.>>1. Install OceanFX 2 - FS2004 (from ofx20sa.zip) and create a>shortcut for easy access in the future.>This program acts as a convenient front end that allows you to>choose and install a Waveset, Swell Direction and Seafloor>Appearance. It also allows you to return to the FS2004>defaults should you so wish. You won't ;)>Make your choice, install and exit.>>2. Install the 11 x 'env_*.bmp' files from 'InstlWat2.zip' by>cutting and pasting into the Flight Simulator>9SceneryWorldtexture folder and overwrite the originals. >>3. Install the 6 x 'env_*.bmp' files from 'new_waves3.zip' by>cutting and pasting into the Flight Simulator 9>SceneryWorldtexture folder and overwrite the originals. Yes,>some of these files will overwrite Bill Lyon's files, but>rather than pick out the specific files to install this is>just an easier way to achieve what we are after. These cover>dawn, dusk, highnoon, lowsun, midsun and overcast. >>4. After you have extracted 'new_waves3.zip' to a temporary>location you will note a file called 'OceanHeightField.bmp' in>the texture folder. This file should be cut and pasted into>the Flight Simulator 9Texture folder (Backup the original>first).>>Daniel has also provided an alternative file as described in>his 'readme.txt' file but I would try the>'OceanHeightField.bmp' in the texture folder first before>trying the other. >>5. Fire up the Sim and set Terrain Detail to 'Land Only' and>Water Effects to 'High'.>>Apart from some of the best reflection effects I have seen to>date, the water textures at times do appear quite uncanny with>very convincing cloud reflections and in many places you often>feel you are looking below the surface towards the sea floor!>As stated earlier, I feel the night reflection effects could>benefit from more work as you are still aware of that>irritating cyclical pattern spreading across the water>surface. During the daytime this is now barely noticeable. It>just looks great :)>>Try a late afternoon flight (say 1000-2000ft) low and slow>over water and look back towards the setting sun and tell me>that all this was not worth it!>Try a flight around midday with scattered clouds from St Just>UK, fly on a southerly heading and admire the breakers on the>beach beyond the cliffs with the rolling Atlantic waves>stretching out behind. Look down and see the sun's reflection>sparkling below and those cloud reflections slowly drifting by>on the surface of the waves.>>My heartiest congratulations to all the authors mentioned. >>Enjoy!>>Mike :-wave>>P4 2.4GHz (400FSB), 1Gig PC2100 DDR Crucial, ATI Radeon 9800>Pro 128MB (Omega 2.4.96c), Hyundai ImageQuest Q17 17" Monitor>(1280x1024x32), Gigabyte GA-8IRXP MoBo, Ultra-Quiet PSU 400W,>WinXP Home (SP1), DirectX 9.0b>>>> >>>Hi Mike,many thanks to you - that's what I'm looking for some weeks.Now I will give them a try.B.R.Stefan

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Chris,I just installed the default seafloor and got the results I showed here. From FS2002 I know that there is no need to fiddle around with the files on a flight by flight basis.See what you fid.Cheers, Henri

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MikeThank you for sharing. I have installed all the recommended goodies and this would have to rate as the best single enhancement to FS9. Not only realistic water and reflections but good frames as well.Thanks againAndy B

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