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After a long break from FS, I've returned

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Hello chaps and chapettes,


Firstly - forgive me if this is the wrong forum for posting a topic such as this, I did have a good search through all the the forums (and indeed, many sub forums) to find somewhere more appropriate, but I couldn't.  I'm sure it will be moved in the fullness of time if necessary.


I've been away from Flight Simming for a few years now - AVSIM certainly looks very different(!) - I used to fly a lot in my late teens, but finally decided enough was enough and to go away and focus on getting some real flying hours under my belt and ultimatley I had far too much to do and not enough time to do it in, my FS machine died and I never bothered replacing it.


I now have a) 'real flying hours under my belt' and B) time (sort of) to get back into the hobby to supplement my real world aviation involvement.


I've been reading the AVSIM forums quite intently for the past week or so and it's nice to see there's still lots of activity for the hobby - the PMDG triple certainly looks quite interesting.


Speaking of long overdue addons, whatever happened to the Level-D 757 that was supposed to be coming?  Perhaps they're waiting for all of them to be in the desert then we all get a real 757 with every boxed copy, rather than a flight deck DVD?


I have a mountain of questions to ask about getting back into things, namely:


1) Am I better off "getting with the times" and buying FSX?  My copy of FS9 is lying around somewhere...maybe...possibly...


2) In my opinion smaller aircraft and flight sim just don't do it for me. I tend to spend my time doing accurate systems simulation with 'proper' flight planning etc.  What are the kingpins of detailled system simulations these days?  When I left off, I think the LDS 767-300 was about as good as it got, with the PMDG 747 a close second.


3) I need to buy a new computer and throttle quadrant, yoke and rudder pedals.  I'll ask this in the hardware forums to avoid verging on any rules for this particular sub forum!


4) What are the good options for detailed weather simulations?  Active Sky was my software of choice before.


5) Anything else I should know before I get back into things?


Sorry for a fairly lengthy initial post with a few questions in it, but I'm looking for sound advice from you guys!


I look forward to your replies.







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1.) Buy FSX. No point in going any further if you don't. And it costs peanuts.


2.) PMDG 737. The not-yet-released FSL Airbus will probably be as good.


3.) Good idea. FSX needs a strong CPU.


4.) Search this forum for "weather engine" or "real weather". Look out for Opus and Real Environment Extreme


5.) Impossibly vague...


Welcome and happy simming.  B)



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welcome back, in my opinion, if you are going to buy a new computer, wait to buy fsx for that new computer.  Since fs9 has been abandoned by many developers, the products available are now free or can be purchased at a steep discount.




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Hello Cufflinks!

Time for me to repay the kindness I got when I made a introductory thread on AVSIM. :)

1 - I'd recommend FSX at the very least. Although FS9 can handle commercial aviation (when a ton of add-ons are added), you'll love doing VFR/low altitude flights on FSX much more. That said, FSX comes with a lot of tweaking et al. If you'd rather dodge that, try taking a look at Prepar3D instead which is Lockheed-Martin's continuation of FSX which features more stability, better textures and a better framerate.

2 - PMDG's 737 NGX. There's no debate as to which is the kingpin of the moment. It marries full scale detail onto excellent visuals. Their T7 is shaping up to be just as good. Alternatively FSLabs has an amazingly detailed Concorde out, and Aerosoft's Airbus X Extended is the most detailed Airbus add-on at the moment. Majestic is working on a full detail Q400, the normal flight operations version is already complete and is a strong second/third to PMDG's 737 NGX.


3 - Like oldbear said, make sure to get a good CPU that can be overclocked. FSX relies heavily on a strong CPU.

4 - Active Sky is still a good choice, however Real Environment Xtreme and Opus have quite the name for themselves too. I use REX and even though I only returned to FSX 3 weeks ago myself, it's a fantastic, vital add-on.

5 - Uhh... You'll find a lot of tweaks/hints on the forums/everywhere. A lot of them are "placebo effect" and/or disprove a tweak/hint you'll find just above/below it. Try them out and see which combination works best for you to optimize your FSX installation. Oh, and try not to get swept away into the storm that is the PMDG cult; they're getting ecstatic about the stance of the landing gear on screenshots of the T7, for crying out loud!  :lol:

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Yup, what they said.


NGX is as good as it gets for jets right now. Q400 from Majestic newly released and also VERY good. Airbus X Extended from Aerosoft also hits the spot for many folk now after a false start with the first version.


REX for weather textures but the weather engine itself isn't up to much. Active Sky 2012 is the current standard but Opus weather seems to have a growing fanbase.


EZDOK is camera software for looking around in FSX. Bit fiddly to set up but can't fly without it now, especially with the head movement and turbulence effects. Opus also has cameras and the same kind of effects but haven't tried it so can't comment.


Track IR if you want to take looking around in the flight deck to the next level.


Ground textures - well you can go nuts. GEX, UTX, mesh, photo scenery. Or you can just hang on for ORBX Global, which will probably do the job in one package, out in a few weeks.


Airports, ditto - anything by Flytampa will be excellent, Orbx if you have a good PC, FS Dreamteam make great airports but one or two are hard on your system. Aerosoft use lots of different developers for airports and mostly they are excellent although there are a handful (Amsterdam Schipol for one) that look nice but run like a bag of old bolts.


Ground traffic - AES if you want everything done for you, GSX if you want something a bit newer and has global coverage but it pesters you a bit at the gate.


ATC - plenty to choose from. RC unchanged from the FS9 days, PFE for immersion, VOX ATC if you can get past the metal Micky sounds or Pro ATC X is the (pricey) new kid on the block.


Charts - Navigraph have everywhere you'd ever want to fly to for a couple of euros each and there's Aivlasoft's EFB which does a lot in one package


Welcome back! Hope you've got deep pockets ;)

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Thanks to each of you for the replies - all taken on board.  It's amazing how far some things have changed, while others are exactly the same as when I left them.





Charts - Navigraph have everywhere you'd ever want to fly to for a couple of euros each and there's Aivlasoft's EFB which does a lot in one package

Welcome back! Hope you've got deep pockets ;)


Deep pockets indeed.  This hobby is almost going to cost the same as the real thing!


Re: charts - I'll use real ones, I see no point paying for specially re-written sim ones. 


I will buy AIRACs from Navigraph, however - nothing worse than seeing an out of date AIRAC on an FMC/GPS!

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Guest Q_flyer

As you've said your a procedural airliner simulation fan, then simply follow these instructions to airliner flight sim bliss ;-

1. Get 'FSX Gold' (a bundle that contains FSX and the Acceleration Pack; which some addons require).

1a. Apply two tweaks to your fsx.cfg file, one is called "HIGH MEM FIX", and the other is called "AFFINITY MASK"... (just google both; it takes 30 seconds to apply them).

2. From Flight 1, get the Ground Environment X series for all continents that you fly in. (Or wait until mid/late June when Orbx are relasing a worldwide texture upgrade for FSX called "FTX Global".

3. Get the PMDG 737 NGX, the Aerosoft Airbus X Extended, and the Majestic Dash 8-Q400; all are absolutely fantastic.

4. Get OpusFSX, a weather and camera effect addon that is just stupendously fantastic. Set and forget, and enjoy amazing weather in FSX.

5. Get a Saitek Yoke (comes with throttle quad) and Saitek Pedals, (and a joystick for your Airbus X Extended). All are cheap (relatively) and do a great job

6. TrackIR; how can anyone fly without it.

7. Get some payware add-on Airports for the destinations you like to fly to/from... check out UK2000 (for the best UK airports), FlyTampa, Aerosoft, and FSDT.

You're done!

Read the manuals, and happy flying! :smile:

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