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DanW

Aivlasoft Charts

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I've been getting frustrated lately with all the PDFs floating around my computer, and clicking through them all the time to switch back and forth. Also I want a single source rather than searching the net for charts depending upon which country it is.

 

Ideally an app that stores or manages them, and I was looking at Aivlasoft.

 

But I found out it doesn't use real charts - it renders its own based upon navigraph data. An interesting concept..

 

You guys that have it - can you give your opinion how much these renders are looking like real charts? Are they practically the same? Is there anything missing from them? Are the annotations and symbols used correct same as real charts?

 

is there anything missing?

 

Are the SIDS/STARS the same?

 

I'm not looking for recommendations I know the product is highly recommended for all it's other features, but I'm not interested in a moving map or auto radio tunes for Vatsim etc in the least. I only want a good charts app that's not going to cost an arm and a leg like some real world subscriptions...

 

Is it worth it just for the charts?

 

Also I heard they are enhancing the charting aspect for v2. Does anyone know what these changes are to the charts for v2?

 

Cheers

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There's a current review on the soft where you will find some screenshots for comparison. http://www.avsim.com...lasoft/EFB.html However, if you want to see some current procedure to compare it to your pdf charts, just give me a name and I will post it.

 

There's some stuff added over rw charts and others are lost. The added items mainly include all the advantages an active sim connection can give you. Means that the ground layout reflects your installed airport, not the rw one which may differ here and there. Traffic display, fuel data, position and relationships towards waypoints.

 

Also, the soft can calculate the DME values and radials even on pure RNAV procedures. While this may not be realistic in the first place, it allows for flying older VOR to VOR planes closer to current procedures. Well, the rest can be read in the review.

 

On the missing parts. You may run into some Navigraph errors here and there and also see some downsides when it comes to display proper DME arc procedures and things. That's mainly a thing arising from the Navigraph data format and database.

 

Of course, all those texts like 'contact departure after passing 3000ft and clap your hands' aren't there. That is, again, a lack arising from the data Navigraph can offer us simmers. But the text for missed approaches is there in short form.

 

Wrong depictions shouldn't be a problem. Those symbols and data formats are understandable and nice to read. You may even have some extra data over rw charts when it comes to the 'glidepath' and things. So some non-prescription approaches may come in easier.

 

The procedures should be the same, especially when using the FMC planes also reading Navigraph data. What you have in the FMC will be there in the EFB and vice versa.

 

The only real need for pdf files may remain when it comes to very small airports (no Navigraph data) and all VFR stuff. Same goes for exotic procedures which Navigraph doesn't cover. So a few visual approaches may be missing 'by design'.

 

You can try the soft in full for 30 days and no payment. Perhaps use that opportunity as the usage itself is hard to transport via text. Just explore it. :smile:

 

The data handling over a ton of pdfs is way easier and the overview features or the rw recommendation based on the sim weather are a treat.

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Thanks CoolP, lots of good info. Would you be able to post the departures and arrivals for the various runway 29s at YSBK Bankstown?

 

That is an important comparison for me, also the ground chart?

 

Are you sure it's calculating radials above what normal charts show?

Are you saying it adds the radial because it's rendered when a normal chart doesn't?

Or does it calculate based upon your aircraft position if you have the moving map turned on?

 

Ahh yeah the free trial I have to try, but I don't want to start until I know the upgrade price for v2 in case I start and v2 isn't released before my trial ends. I don't want to pay full price for both v1 and v2, you know what I mean? Happy to pay something but not two sets of $90

 

Cheers

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Do you think V2 is that close?

 

Well, V1 is a nice soft either way. Here are some shots. Seems like YSBK was a good example for Navigraph coverage losses. No arrival, approach or departure for you. :mellow:

clipboard01fwr.th.jpg

clipboard02pdh.th.jpg

 

I've added a bit of those for YSSY Sydney. I like the SID STAR overview feature. It's much better than looking at different pdf files.

clipboard03bx.th.jpg

clipboard04k.th.jpg

 

You see the selection screen, also stating the current weather (not in my shots, I wasn't connected) and suggesting a runway or more.

 

clipboard05np.th.jpg

clipboard06pe.th.jpg

clipboard07r.th.jpg

clipboard08w.th.jpg

clipboard09n.th.jpg

clipboard10n.th.jpg

 

When you look closer on e.g. the last shots, you'll see the references for using the VORs on RNAV waypoints. DEENA D9.9 R161 SY 122.1 means that waypoint DEENA is at 9.9 DME from SY VOR (122.10) on the 161 radial.

 

All the charts can be zoomed, moved and connected if you like. There also is a night mode.

clipboard11a.th.jpg

 

As said, when connected to the sim, you also have extra panels for the fuel and TOD calcs. All that stuff can run on the same chart and therefore combines a lot of information. Well, you can also reduce data of course, change colours and notifications or use some reminders for online flying. When online, it also reads that text info of the stations. So you have a digital ATIS for example.

 

Lots of things, hence the tip to try it. B)

 

What may be missing at times is the terrain information. That's not within the Navigraph data, so those tight valleys only show up in the pdfs with the shaded map. Navigraph only offers the lateral guidance data, no obstacles or terrain. That's what I've forget in my previous post.

 

Depends on the airport when it comes to the felt lack of data. LOWI looks (too) easy in EFB, while the 'default' ILS into a major hub isn't lacking much, if anything.

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Hmm that's a worry :( although basic procedures, there are free charts out there at the airservices site. If I have to supplement with PDFs then that puts the nDAC service as a better option to get my world charts, alongside the free Aussie ones.

 

So the ground charts aren't built from navigraph they are built from FSX data?

 

Your YSBK has 4 runways, but the real one has 3. Back when FSX was released it did have 4, but they removed the crosswind runway.

 

Navigraph should have 3 in the current data.

 

If I have the updated AFCAD that has 3 runways, then EFB should pick that up and do the ground map from my addon scenery?

 

Do you think maybe Airac has the arrivals and SIDS but its not displaying them because it has a runway mismatch between your old afcad and the current navigraph?

 

I'll have to check my PMDG folder and see what's in there, maybe I'll fly the NGX into my GA airport lol, at least I'll see what STARS are in the FMC from navigraph.

 

Yeah the v2 - I saw a post that they were cutting or freezing the feature list to get a 2012 release. As far as simming software goes, 2012 is close for me.

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So the ground charts aren't built from navigraph they are built from FSX data?

Yes.

 

If I have the updated AFCAD that has 3 runways, then EFB should pick that up and do the ground map from my addon scenery?

That will be the case, yes.

 

Do you think maybe Airac has the arrivals and SIDS but its not displaying them because it has a runway mismatch between your old afcad and the current navigraph?

I've checked that and there only is some airport data for YSBK (that it's there), but no SID and STAR file.

 

As said, I think you have spotted the downside well with that one airport. Bit of a surprise since it has more than a few procedures in the rw. Thing is, your navigraph based FMCs will all show the same lack, only RXP GPS stuff may included the actual data. So you are bound to create a custom text file for EFB and also setting up your FMC with some file of that kind.

 

That's sim reality. :( Perhaps one can leave a note in the Navigraph forums and they can include YSBK in the next cycle.

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Ok yep, so it's really a navigraph issue. It's not normal for airliners to fly in there but the flight1 mustang will with its updatable data.

 

My GAs with GNS530 will be fine though.

 

I guess navigraph focuses on the international or long runway heavy aircraft airports, which is understandable.

 

I think I should investigate my navigraph data and see how it matches up to my favorite destinations in Asia and Oceania, Caribbean etc.

 

If they are covered, then it may be a good buy and I can spend more time flying less time planning and messing around on file management or printing. Although I just got a nice yoke clip, will have to see how that goes :)

 

That brings me to another question - are the navigraph charts easily printable?

Do they turn out nice on paper?

Then I could run full screen..

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I've never used their NDAC chart service. That pay per chart model holds me back I guess. But I've never looked into the details, so I couldn't tell if it is good or bad. With EFB using their data set, there may be little extra use when it comes to airport charts.

 

By that, I wonder if YSBK is missing in the NDAC too. It should be, right?

 

I guess navigraph focuses on the international or long runway heavy aircraft airports, which is understandable.

Looking at the numbers of some 3872 SID and STAR files, it seems like you are correct. Airports itself (just the location) are more, but procedures are those thousands of text files only.

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I've been trying the demo since the last couple of days and I'm a bit confused. How does this software replace pdfs if it's missing so much information?

 

Many crossing restrictions aren't there with Sids/Starts(or expected alt.), sometimes you have different rest. based on the type of aircraft and it isn't there either. Approach charts are also awful, it only has FAF alt. and none of the stepdowns.

It does make it somewhat easier to choose Sids/Starts but thats mostly thanks to routefinder as it already gives you the transition point. All that is left is knowing the runway or which type of aircraft that Sid/Star is for, something this program also lacks mentioning.

 

I just don't see how this program is like the realworld counterparts as a paperless system. I'd rather open my pdfs in a reader with tabs on a single window, It's so much nicer.

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Hey Guys

 

I used to use PDF charts all the time and like you built up a good collection of them.. I also used to use the Navigraph charts... I've been using EFB now for a couple of years and have found that I don't use my PDF's anymore... The OP is right there are a few issues pop up with charts here and there but in my experience you will find 95% of the airports you fly into will be fine..

 

The main reason for my post here is to tell you about their support... If you do have a problem they are really good at sorting it out... I've had 3 or 4 problems with airports I've flown into in the last couple of years. Their support is excellent and very quick... Even if it's a Navigraph Data issue, they will go off and sort it out for you...

 

It's a nice piece of software in my opinion

 

Cheers

 

Steve

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That brings me to another question - are the navigraph charts easily printable?

Yes, there is a print button on the NDAC software and all the charts print in nice formats. I do this all the time before starting a flight as I like the paper chart in my hands to compare against the NGX and Aivlasoft details.

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I've never used their NDAC chart service. That pay per chart model holds me back I guess. But I've never looked into the details, so I couldn't tell if it is good or bad. With EFB using their data set, there may be little extra use when it comes to airport charts.

 

By that, I wonder if YSBK is missing in the NDAC too. It should be, right?

 

 

Looking at the numbers of some 3872 SID and STAR files, it seems like you are correct. Airports itself (just the location) are more, but procedures are those thousands of text files only.

 

Yeah I doubt nDAC would have YSBK, I don't intend for it to be an all in one chart service or EFB really.

 

For all Australian charts I get them free online, and a few others that are easy to find.

 

nDAC is there to supplement this for example Asian countries, Island countries, or other small countries where they are harder to find.

 

It's about 20c per airport, that covers every chart for that airport. This is pretty good pricing, as you get all the charts and can keep them even if they get out of date. They only update every 3 months anyway.

 

What nDAC does is provide the major airports for countries all around the world, so somewhere you only want to get the charts to fly into their 2 international airports, instead of registering to that countries service just for that, can use nDac instead.

 

That is my option if I can't get perfect results from Aivlasoft, is to use nDAC+Airnav+AIP+Air services Australia.

 

Then if I get lazy I can just fly with out of date charts which doesn't hurt too much in simming.

 

I might look into a A5 paper and a set of A5 binders to make a home-made chart collection cheaper than Jeppesen. I could go iPad but my wife will kill me if I spend any more money on this hobby!!

 

Edit:

I just checked my Navigraph SIDSTARS folder - 91 Australian SIDSTARS!!!

 

How can there be 91 and not YSBK... even though YSBK is mostly GA, and Charter/Business, it would be the busiest GA airport in the country.

I'd say many of those 91 airports are much smaller with less traffic. Probably it's Navigraph I should contact, not Aivlasoft.

 

You're right I did pick a good example, but not out of choice, just pure luck I think that my local is not covered. I never noticed before because it was only a month ago that Menno C. Robert made an AFCAD before it, before the AFCAD it was totally borked and not worth using on default scenery.

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All that is left is knowing the runway or which type of aircraft that Sid/Star is for, something this program also lacks mentioning.

 

 

Hi Kaan,

 

I've seen the crossing restrictions on regular charts and various "expect ATC etc" remarks.

 

But I'm not familiar with the type of plane the STAR/SID is for, how do I interpret that from the charts is it just the speed specified?

 

Say for these examples from two different countries how would I interpret the aircraft type:

http://155.178.201.160/d-tpp/1208/00237MOORPARK.PDF

http://www.airservicesaustralia.com/aip/current/dap/SBKSR02-129.pdf

 

This is kind of the reason I like using the real charts, because I'm always learning something new

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Some charts have jet or prop only information written on it somewhere. Or just different altitudes for either type.

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ok, so if it is there it should be pretty clear and I will notice it?

I wasn't sure if there was an aircraft type code or something on the chart.

 

I checked navigraphs forum, the SIDS/STARS they provide aren't chosen by them, they just take whatever comes in their data feed. That is any that are requested by the commercial providers. I guess YSBK is not asked for by the airline customers. Even though the smaller airports have been asked for, they may have 1 or 2 airline flights per day or something like that.

 

From their forum (I read it after I posted to ask for YSBK):

 

Can I request missing airports be added to AIRAC updates?

 

Unfortunately, no. Navigraph AIRAC Update data for all add-ons is automatically derived from real data from our provider, and is not added to manually.

 

The airports covered by our data provider depend on whether they have real world customers requiring this data.

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Ok thanks.

 

Well I priced up the stationary, A5 folders, sheets, paper, hole lunch, plastic protectors etc to print all the charts I need for a "real" chart collection for where I fly, and its coming to double the $ that Aivlasoft is charging. Seriously $170 of stuff, not including ink. It also comes with a whole load of hassle to print these and keep up to date.

 

I think I will go with the Aivlasoft for the sheer convenience and cost effectiveness of it. If I ever get to the stage of flying IFR in real life, maybe at that stage I'll consider building a printed chart library again.

 

But after this research the EFB seems a no brainer despite the small shortcomings. I'll start the trial.

 

They have said on their forum there will be a discount on v2 for current v1 owners but not how much. At least that's something to move forward on.

 

Thanks for the help guys

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The missing altitude crossing restrictions is the main reason I will never buy Aivlasoft EFB.

I use VNAV for every descent and knowing when to cross Y intersection at Z altitude is important for calculating my TOD.

 

In the end I still have to look up the actual STAR charts to get that info, so I might as well use pdf charts all the way.

Aivlasoft EFB isn't a one-stop-shop in my opinion. Handy tool, like FSCommander, but not really complete.

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I think I will go with the Aivlasoft for the sheer convenience and cost effectiveness of it. If I ever get to the stage of flying IFR in real life, maybe at that stage I'll consider building a printed chart library again.

I think that's a good way to look at it, especially with having in mind that the lack of data in EFB is the same lack of data in any FSX FMC plane using Navigraph (which all advanced ones do).

 

The sim restrictions are there, but they are no show stoppers and I doubt that most folks actually run into them. Well, it's the sim and it also comes in very cheap and convenient in regard to any rw sources, as you say. If there ever will be a sim dev using ARINC formats for their nav data (some may plan this), I think the step for EFB is reasonable to do the same.

 

But as long as your sim plane uses the same sim data as your map tool, the system should work just fine. Got access to rw charts? Sure, use them, perhaps besides EFB. Best of both worlds.

 

As an example on what differs. The rw charts often define teardrop turns differently for Cat A&B, C&D planes for example. Navigraph depicts the C&D stuff only. Crossing altitudes like those 'expect 250kts, FL100 at waypoint' are there, but mostly feature the jet values, not the prop ones.

 

So if you are flying the cat C or D jet, you will never notice a difference and if you are in the prop plane, you may still arrive at your destination without flying into terrain. This is just to show the severity or not severity of the issue being based on personal preference of course.

 

The 30 day trial will surely be able to clear up the fog on the ups and downs.

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Just to add to the forum. I've been using Aivlasoft for some years now and for the most part it's ok. But there are short comings like the ones mention and a couple that I'll mention here.

  1. I run Aivlasoft on a remote computer (laptop). It's not a standalone product meaning if I'm in a flight and if I did not start the DataEngine I cannot start the remote client. I have no access to charts.
  2. Aivlasoft works ONLY with a flight plan. I normally start with FSX flight planner...review it, remove or add waypoints that I want. Save flight plan and open it on remote laptop using Aivlasoft client. Enter the flight plan in GNS530. There is a way to enter your own waypoints in Aivlasoft but I get an error message ever time so that's way I go this route.
  3. Selecting and activating a STAR or SID in Aivlasoft tries to push it to my GNS530 and causes it to crash. So I can only review them and not activate them. Approaches are the same but the screen is really small and very hard to navigate around to find the IAF and/or FAF.
  4. The PLUS said about the STAR in Aivlasoft is that is gives you the arrival based upon your direction of flight, if you do not have ATC vectors. Unlike the real charts I have to look at each one to determine the best for my direction.
  5. BTW, I do sim with a REAL EFB with real up to date charts(Seattle Avionics) but they are only for the US. So internationally is where Aivlasoft shines for me.

Hope this helps

Ray

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Hi, Ray.

 

1. and if I did not start the DataEngine I cannot start the remote client. I have no access to charts.

That's by design. The smaller data provider connects to FSX (Simconnect) and reads the nav data plus the FSX scenery. The display unit, which you can place somewhere in your local network or locally, or even both, then displays all data.

 

I think I'm looking at some support items with your post.

2. There is a way to enter your own waypoints in Aivlasoft but I get an error message ever time so that's way I go this route.

This should work. You can modify your route at any time and use all sorts of waypoints like VOR, NDB, intersections. The editing itself may be more intuitive in real flight planners though. I mainly use it to just modify a plan if there are errors.

 

3. Selecting and activating a STAR or SID in Aivlasoft tries to push it to my GNS530 and causes it to crash.

It shouldn't crash in the first place. It works here, but you can always disable the 'flight plan pushing' feature in the settings if it causes any trouble. The feature was meant for default FSX gauges, being able to use any EFB flight plan and the changes on the fly, without accessing FSX menus to load a flight plan. Pretty neat.

 

Find it in the settings of the display unit and data provider. Just turn off the marked items. The one is for the storing, the other one for the pushing, so to speak.

dp1v.th.jpg

75030944.th.jpg

 

On those support topics, perhaps check the Aivlasoft forums. I'm sure the devs will be around trying to help. http://www.aivlasoft...pport/index.php

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Ive been using the Demo of Aivlasoft EFB and europe is a mess, missing data, airports and lots of incorrect sids and stars and rnav data, i know they take the data direct from AIRAC data bases but its enough of a mess to put me off as i have to keep falling back on pdf charts for rnav approaches and sids and stars and reporting the errors is to much hassle as i find them a lot :(

 

Flying in the old USA is good with EFB

 

If Europe was not such a mess then i would buy it in a heart beat as the app it self is great and has a lot of features but the lack of ability to correct the sid's, stars and rnav approaches while im setting up my flight plan is a let down when i find these errors.

 

On a side note, it looks like i have to pay extra to have the fixed??? databases which is a let down as that means im in the trap of paying to update the software and there is no guarantee that the updated databases will be fixed or have the fixes in them when i have brought them :(

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Gandy, my main flights happen in Europe so I can't relate to the general problems to be honest. Got an example? :mellow:

 

The EFB soft comes with a Navigraph set to start with. It's needed in the EFB concept. It's a full set, but it may be older, I guess some late 2011. If it would contain errors, an update would be advised. Means an update of the Navigraph database, not EFB. But your FMC planes using the same data base and cycle (in a different format) will have the same problems then.

 

So if there was some faulty data in lets say 1110 at LIRF, EFB will show them and the iFly, PMDG, CS planes too. I had rare occasions where only one data format had errors, but those are few and mostly get fixed by Navigraph on the next cycle. Well, they may need a HU at times. ^_^

 

Are you sure that the whole of Europe is off? I can see Navigraph being imprecise here and there, but not on the general basis you are describing. Hence the question on the example.

 

There's no force to update anything in EFB, the updates on the program come for free. There may be one to look for proper Navigraph data though. Agreed.

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Find it in the settings of the display unit and data provider. Just turn off the marked items. The one is for the storing, the other one for the pushing, so to speak.

 

Thanks CoolP..I'll have a look this evening. Guess, I just got use to reviewing it.

 

-Ray

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No problem, Ray. If there are problems remaining, head over to Aivlasoft. If there was some problem in the actual code, the devs are fast at fixing.

 

In general. The EFB topic always involves two devs. The one for the program (EFB) and the one for the data (AIRAC cycle). This is just to explain why I'm stressing to look for the one or the other source of errors. Usually, if they at Aivlasoft see that some Navigraph error spoils their customers, they contact Navigraph and try to solve it.

 

Fixing Navigraph errors will always include to download a fresh cycle though, at least a new revision of it. So perhaps that's where Gandy is coming from.

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