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SQUAWKIDENT

Finally moving to X-Plane from FSX - what freeware aircraft?

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Hi all, Well I've just about had it with FSX. I don't fly aeroplanes to look at the individual rivets on the engine cowlings. Neither do I fly them just because they look pretty. Flight dynamics and systems authenticity are key for me - both in real-world flying and simulator. Only PMDG, Level-D and Real Air Simulations released the kind of aeroplanes I liked to fly in FSX but I thought it was time to try something new and have just ordered X-Plane 9. I know the new version is out at Christmas but thought I'd try and familiarize myself with the new software and addons first. Can you recommend a good freeware (light) aircraft that has realistic flight dynamics and a VC for X-Plane?I know there are some brilliant looking payware aircraft available but I want to dip my feet in gently to start! Thanks in advance! Regards Adam

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You would be hard pressed to find 3D cockpits in freeware for x plane. As with anything, you get what you pay for. x-plane.org has tons of freeware aircraft with 2D cockpits. If they have 3D cockpits, they would be very bare.There is a thread over at the x-plane.org forums that is dedicated to the best freeware GA aircraft.Have a look at that. If you want to look at payware, let me know and I will PM you some sites that deal in payware.I don't think I'm allowed to post commercial developers websites in these forums.

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Will do so tonight. Thanks for the info. For some reason our company filter is blocking x-plane.org saying it's a dangerous site. Edit: I've cancelled my X-Plane 9 order and will play around with the demo until version 10 arrives in December.

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Hi all, Well I've just about had it with FSX. I don't fly aeroplanes to look at the individual rivets on the engine cowlings. Neither do I fly them just because they look pretty.
Just so we don't get too laxed in simulated aircraft development......... I DO care about rivet lines, and authentic looks of wings, fusalage surfaces etc. I'll often scan from side to side, and authentic looking wing panels mean a lot to me. They just go a long way in creating a virtual reality of the real thing. For reference, I have built real airplanes with thousands of rivets. And painted them too. Perhaps it's the reason I notice..........more often. I can't stand plain Jane vanilla wings, & usually won't sim fly one.............even if it has decent flight dynamics. But in the meantime, enjoy what ever programs you end up with. X-Plane 10 could be interesting. L.Adamson

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I'm sure Goran might chime in, as a developer, but as a consumer of both sims, I can say that most of the newer, better quality Xplane aircraft (payware) are stunning in detail. You don't see better, full 3D gauges than in xplane. I'm talking individual 3D digits on the dials! Don't see that on the latest Carenados. It's the scenery that needs a boost, and that's about to come in XP10. G's Duchess has ridiculous detail, so does Tom Kyler's Mu-2 (and that's 2 yrs old!) and his Falco, same with many other planes out there. When I see developers showing pictures of bolts with rendered threads, I know the detail is pretty well maxed!


Simmo W, Melbourne, Oz
http://www.youtube.com/user/id5556
 

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Ha.You mean these bolt threads, Simon? render49.pngrender50.png With CPU's getting ridiculously fast, a few more developers will start modelling more and more detail. The question is, which ones are willing to do the extra work. It's extremely tedious work and it can take weeks to model just one section of the cockpit properly.

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Ah, that's the one. A big bolt though! Has Theo the Texturer even started attempting to texture that yet? yes the work required to do such detail & ensure its accurate position must be brain-numbing, I know it from just doing basic scenery building. This is the careful craftsmanship we all love in Xplane. When you start modelling the weld lines and casting imperfections I'll know you guys have gone too far.


Simmo W, Melbourne, Oz
http://www.youtube.com/user/id5556
 

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Ha.You mean these bolt threads, Simon? render49.pngrender50.png With CPU's getting ridiculously fast, a few more developers will start modelling more and more detail. The question is, which ones are willing to do the extra work. It's extremely tedious work and it can take weeks to model just one section of the cockpit properly.
For an aircraft bolt, there should only be about two to three threads showing........... :) And I'll be looking for proper rivet dimensions on the shop head too... Looks good though! L.Adamson

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Ah, that's the one. A big bolt though! Has Theo the Texturer even started attempting to texture that yet? yes the work required to do such detail & ensure its accurate position must be brain-numbing, I know it from just doing basic scenery building. This is the careful craftsmanship we all love in Xplane. When you start modelling the weld lines and casting imperfections I'll know you guys have gone too far.
Ah yes. I haven't made my renders of welded joins public yet. I'm still experimenting with it because the weld bead I made has 14 polygons in it. Imagine hundreds of weld beads.
For an aircraft bolt, there should only be about two to three threads showing........... :) And I'll be looking for proper rivet dimensions on the shop head too... Looks good though! L.Adamson
That's actually an old render. It's been re-worked, but according to photos, there are more than 2 or 3 thread lines. Then again, there are so many variations and customizations of it, that it's hard to pinpoint one. The throttle console body has had the edges rounded as well.

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Thanks for the advice re freeware. I've found a very nice Tomahawk and will investigate payware once I'm fully versed in using the sim.I "uncancelled" my X-Plane 9 order and it arrived this morning - will install tonight! I can say this for a definite. This sim runs so much better than FSX even with everything maxxed in the demo version. Just a quick niggle - is there anyway to speed up the pan rate on my yoke hat? It's v slow in 3D view. Also how do I assign a button to switch between views (ie spot/cockpit/3d/chase etc). In FSX you can assign ONE button to scroll through each view in turn - I can't find this in X-Plane? Any ideas? Thanks, Adam

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Thanks for the advice re freeware. I've found a very nice Tomahawk and will investigate payware once I'm fully versed in using the sim.I "uncancelled" my X-Plane 9 order and it arrived this morning - will install tonight! I can say this for a definite. This sim runs so much better than FSX even with everything maxxed in the demo version. Just a quick niggle - is there anyway to speed up the pan rate on my yoke hat? It's v slow in 3D view. Also how do I assign a button to switch between views (ie spot/cockpit/3d/chase etc). In FSX you can assign ONE button to scroll through each view in turn - I can't find this in X-Plane? Any ideas? Thanks, Adam
Everything is customizable in the settings/joystick, keys and equipment menu. You can either set a few of the main functions in the Buttons Basic tab, Buttons Advanced tab or the Keys tab. There are a bunch of default keys already assigned but you can also set your own key assignments at the bottom of that page. To go into VC mode, press CTRL O (letter, not number) and you can freely pan around the cockpit. Panning is as fast as your mouse moves. To hold a view, either press E or Q. To go back to 2D cockpit view, press CTRL O again. Arrow keys do what they are supposed to. Up arrow for up, Down arrow for down, etc...+ and - are for zoom in and zoom out. Page Up and Page Down is for moving forward and backward respectively.If you set the panning to your Hat switch, there is no way to increase the pan rate in sim. You might be able to set the sensitivities in your hardware. Once you're happy with your settings and they're all set, copy the preferences folder (located in XPlane/Output. All your settings are stored here. If you update, or something happens to your installation, you can simply drag and drop your preferences into the corresponding folder.

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Thanks for the detailed info Goran much appreciated. Am really excited about using this sim. We have FSX installed on our flying school PC's. Hopefully after I've tested/used it for a while we can consider switching to X-Plane. RegardsAdam

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Great news Adam. Yes find the view/pan functions in the controls setup area, my hat panning is pretty quick I find. Not near my pc now, but if u want a screenshot of how mine is setup, just pm me. Oh, and trackir works really well too! For a hoot, goto views/external camera (last option in list) and watch a replay of your perfect landings from any angle. Use arrow keys to move around and pg up/down. I've been trying fsx quite a lot lately, so was shocked at the amazing physics demonstrated by xplane's replays when revisiting.


Simmo W, Melbourne, Oz
http://www.youtube.com/user/id5556
 

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Hi Simmo Enjoyed your youtube heli vid at Gibralter! Am installing the DVDs now for x-plane 9. Am going to use my Saitek Yoke/CH Pedals. When I tried to use my CH Yoke the hat pans really slowly compared to FSX. I do have TrackIR so will try that also if the panning doesn't speed up using the Saitek yoke. Are you assigning your hat views via the "button" tab in x-plane? Regards Adam

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