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t_bergman

Questions for the X-Plane Guru's

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First off, I have been eyeing x-plane for a while. What has me intrigued into jumping over is the LES Saab 340, I really enjoy medium to long prop job routes. I have a few questions before I make the investment into a new sim. My current sim setup is as follows:

 

-Prepar3d v1.4

-AS2012 textures and Wx engine

-FSX freeware airports

-FSFT KFLL

 

Being a commercial pilot, I really am looking for the best experience possible. Which is why I have a few questions regarding how X-plane operates.

 

-How does X-Plane handle weather generation? Is it true weather or just textures placed around the aircraft like P3D?

-Besides aircraft, what are the must have 3rd party addons currently?

-Whats the typical size of you XP installation? I currently have P3D on a 7200rpm drive but I am looking into SSD options.

-Anyone or anywhere I can get an update to how the LES 340 is doing?

-In terms of airport ground handling, are there addon's like GSX?

 

Thanks so much for taking the time to answer,

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-How does X-Plane handle weather generation? Is it true weather or just textures placed around the aircraft like P3D?

 

Well, XPX's weather is much better than that of any other sim (less the specifics for soaring recreated in the soaring simulations)!  You can define it yourself, by editing it pretty much like in MSFS/P3D but with some more parameters available in terms of wind and turbulence settings, as well as precipitation, or you can even "Paint" it around your aircraft using a GUI with a Map view, set it randomly based on a few vectors like wind, turb, temp, convectivity, etc..., or set XPX to get it automatically from the net in the for of METARs.

 

Of course being based on METAR data only ( and a few algorithms XPX uses to extrapolate higher cloud cover when above that reprted by METAR, and wind variations with altitude, plus turbulence and wind shear...) you know that, for instance, cloud reporting is limited to 10000' or the sector altittude (which can be as low as, say, 5000') so, an OVC mant of Sc above that Alt would not be represented... but XPX does a good job at extrapolating this type of missing data IMO.

 

One thing I can tell you for sure - no other sim comes even close to XPX when you have to land your aircraft under bad / severe weather conditions. Add intense rain / hail, and ....

 

-Whats the typical size of you XP installation? I currently have P3D on a 7200rpm drive but I am looking into SSD options.

 

It is so easy to add aircraft and scenery to XPX that it all depends on your capacity to resist starting downloading a bunch of very nice/excellent OSM/Mesh/Orto/Airport sceneries covering the whole World or just your usual RL area of flight, add-on aircraft (insane numbers of freeware available ...), etc...

 

I'd say a typical XPX Global install will easily grow to 120GB...

 

The remaining questions have already been addressed by the others :-)

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Thanks for the responses, I did download the demo and load it up. The biggest challenge are the key commands, wow are they different. In fact how LR set up the entire UI is different and is going to take a whole lot of getting used to. The biggest hurdle is that the MS key commands have been ingrained into memory since 1998 or so.

 

I did notice differences in how XP models flight vs. P3D, they are different, one is not better than the other in my opinion. Something I was really impresses with is that unless you have the aircraft trimmed out correctly, its going to act like an aircraft and be weird if you let your hands off the yoke.

 

Weather was really cool in XP, I did like how it is generated and the affect on aircraft performance. Clouds are a bit weird IMO, I think it may be the MSFS guys being spoiled by REX or AS textures.

 

The living world as LR calls it is pretty cool, definitely gives you a more immerse feeling but I think it may get a little cartoonish after a while.

 

Clickspots in the default aircraft were another weird issue, whenever I would try to click it would almost either not allow it or wouldn't release the mouse until I reclicked even after I released the original click.

 

Overall after trying XP, there are elements which I REALLY like (weather, flight model). But then I boot up P3D and everything is, excuse the expression, the way its suppose to be. I think I may need a lot more time playing around with the sim before I would spend the money to buy it.

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Overall after trying XP, there are elements which I REALLY like (weather, flight model). But then I boot up P3D and everything is, excuse the expression, the way its suppose to be. I think I may need a lot more time playing around with the sim before I would spend the money to buy it.

 

Take your time... It takes time and sometimes patience, to use XPX, but in the end the positive aspects such as those you've mentioned, and particularly the support from the dev team that the sim continuously receives, outcome the shortcomings...

 

Then, think of why someone so well placed in the market of flight simulation likie Robert Randazzo, would address XPX like he did on his recent speach at an AVSIM gathering. I am sure Robert wouldn't even comment on it shouldn't he have found good reasons to express his enthusiasm with this simulation platform.

 

And, don't hurry, you are also very well with P3D, specially with the add-ons you mention! I used it as well, and was my preferred on the FSX vs P3D "contest", and am completely devoted to DCS's World flight dynamics model, but somehow, it is XPX I have installed and am totatlly addicted to right now, after having learned to... wait and believe on a promissing future it certainly has ahead of it... ;-)

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The key commands are actually quite logically placed but can be disorientating coming from FS.
Indeed after having used XP for a while, when I fly FS I sometimes find myself trying to use the XP10 keys!

For example, engine commands are all logically grouped on the function keys (F1-F12) and the control surface commands on the number keys just below (e.g. flaps are keys 1 and 2, spoilers keys 3 and 4).
The great thing is that any key or joystick button can be easily mapped to any function, so to lessen the pain you can assign the familiar FS keys.
Once you learn where everything is you'll be surprised how easy the XP10 interface is.
The new default view keys are also excellent.

The only gotcha is that if you set up the joystick hat keys to pan around the 3D Cockpit view, they do not rotate around the plane in Circle view. I get around this by using the TrackIR for the cockpit view and mapping the joystick left/right/up/down rather than the view rotate commands, to make it move around the plane in Circle view.

Anyway have fun!

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I actually find X-Plane's controller / button configuration interface a lot more user-friendly than those of FSX / P3D. Call it complex? Than you should try to configure anything in DCS World :-/  Whow! that's what I call getting lost....

 

On the many times brought into discussion accuracy / realism of the flight model, which is something we should all care about while we sometimes spend way to much time with the visuals neglecting what a "FLIGHT" simulator really should try to do for us - replicating plausibly the sensation / techniques of flying an aircraft - I would say what we all know - no sim is perfect in that area.

 

XPX is certainly different from FSX/P3D. The base approach used in XPX allows for much more combinations of the data you have access to for the aircraft you're modelling and the variables / parameters used in the sim. Plane-Maker is a powerful tool that if used with expertise can produce excellent aircraft models.

 

Just as it happens with the other sims, specific ones not being considered (like DCS, where each detailled model is designed for months/years based on RW information that most aircraft designers for FSX or XPX do not have access to), it pays to use well designed add-ons.

 

I once compared LES to A2A, and I think it is a fair comparison. Now look at A2A and the time it is taking for them to come out with the C172 Skywawk. Are they beginners in designing aircraft for FSX? Is the C172 such a complex aircraft? They even own, or at least flew the real model to gather important information for better tunning, and I am sure that when it get's released, a Cessna C172 designed by A2A or RealAir will be the best we can have for FSX!  Now, take the LES dc3, the upcoming Saab 340, the X-Aviation MU2, Peter's Airbus A380, JRollon's CR200 (and the Jetstream too), WL777, FlyJSim 727, Felis aircraft ( russian ) etc...  All of those projects take months to complete, the detail and accuracy being their major characteristics. Flying one of those models in XPX will certainly render you a much better experience than the one you get with many free downloads, or even some of the default aircraft that come with XPX.

 

One thing that, by default, makes flying in XPX more close to the real thing than in plain FSX / P3D is the way weather interacts with your aircraft. That is very important IMO, and unless you spend some money in add-ons (weather injectors, "flight effects tune-up utilities" like Accufeel, etc...) you want be able to compare both sims in this area. IMO, even with those add-ons, XPX still does a better job at giving you a much more realistic bad time when the things get tough!

 

I am waiting for 10.30 and following releases. Some of my wants / expectations might become addressed, but honestly, I did quit complaining about them and instead decided to *** ENJOY *** what I already have. Whatever add's to the present experience will only help making it even better :-)

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Overall after trying XP, there are elements which I REALLY like (weather, flight model). But then I boot up P3D and everything is, excuse the expression, the way its suppose to be. I think I may need a lot more time playing around with the sim before I would spend the money to buy it.

 

Well … you know … everything you are used to, seems to be easy or right (even it may not be the case). I am used to X-Plane “only” since around 6 years (not since 1998 like you with MSFS), and it feels easy and right to me. The same was with MS Office. Until recently we still had Office 2003 on the job and it felt right. Then, Office 2010 was introduced, and it felt … strange. Well … it felt strange. Meanwhile it feels good and right, as I got used to it.

When I fire up FSX every now and then, everything is different and I think why it has to be so complicated? FSX??? Complicated??? :O You may think: “Are you kidding me? It’s a common knowledge that X-Plane is way more complicated than FSX.”  Really?

I was tired about this ever returning urban legend and did a comparison in regard of the UI. I already posted this in another thread, so I don’t repeat it here.

There are other things too, where X-Plane is (a lot) easier than the other sim. Of course it isn’t perfect, and some things are still easier in FSX. Like in real life, the only “complicated” thing is, to get used to it. If mankind ever would act in the manner “I’m used to this, and won’t change my habits”, we probably still would sit on trees :lol:.

So, take the time - and don't forget how long it took to learn FSX/P3D to the level you know it now.

 

 

I actually find X-Plane's controller / button configuration interface a lot more user-friendly than those of FSX / P3D. Call it complex? Than you should try to configure anything in DCS World :-/  Whow! that's what I call getting lost....

 

See above ...

 

On the many times brought into discussion accuracy / realism of the flight model, which is something we should all care about while we sometimes spend way to much time with the visuals neglecting what a "FLIGHT" simulator really should try to do for us - replicating plausibly the sensation / techniques of flying an aircraft - I would say what we all know - no sim is perfect in that area.
 
+++++++1.
 
To t_bergman:
as a real world pilot I assume, you are more interested in FLIGHT simulation than in the whole schmear :lol: (like "flowing" people, deicing vehicles with no effect, winter textures without effect on the friction on the runway, etc. etc).
 
I (very) often read: "I want the simulator of my choice to be as realistic as possible". The question is - most realistic looking, or most realistic simulating reality (within the limits of a desktop simulator).
It's like asking "Hey guys, I want the best car available" :rolleyes:. But what is the best car? A Porsche, Ferrari, Rolls Royce, ... might be the least what you need and want ...
 
In X-Plane there aren't (yet) deicing vehicles, but working anti ice switches since years (you will fall from the sky, if you don't switch them on). You also may fall from the sky when you have a birdstrike (Capt. Sullenberger would choose X-Plane :P), and also when flying - even with an airliner - through the red zone of a thunderstorm. Try this with the "other" sim, and even the default trike will only swing a little bit. There are (many) more examples, but too little time now ...
 
All the above are the reasons why I switched already around 6 years ago, when X-Plane 8 (!!!!!) was still actual. The visuals weren't as good as in FSX, but the better simulation of flight aspects and the feeling of really flying was way superior.

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To t_bergman:
as a real world pilot I assume, you are more interested in FLIGHT simulation than in the whole schmear :lol: (like "flowing" people, deicing vehicles with no effect, winter textures without effect on the friction on the runway, etc. etc).
 
I (very) often read: "I want the simulator of my choice to be as realistic as possible". The question is - most realistic looking, or most realistic simulating reality (within the limits of a desktop simulator).
It's like asking "Hey guys, I want the best car available" :rolleyes:. But what is the best car? A Porsche, Ferrari, Rolls Royce, ... might be the least what you need and want ...
 
In X-Plane there aren't (yet) deicing vehicles, but working anti ice switches since years (you will fall from the sky, if you don't switch them on). You also may fall from the sky when you have a birdstrike (Capt. Sullenberger would choose X-Plane :P), and also when flying - even with an airliner - through the red zone of a thunderstorm. Try this with the "other" sim, and even the default trike will only swing a little bit. There are (many) more examples, but too little time now ...
 
All the above are the reasons why I switched already around 6 years ago, when X-Plane 8 (!!!!!) was still actual. The visuals weren't as good as in FSX, but the better simulation of flight aspects and the feeling of really flying was way superior.

 

 

Yes, I am a real world pilot (commercial actually) and flight dynamics/weather is huge to me. Right now I have to get over the negative transfer of operating the sim. I understand that it is going to take some time, on the positive side, all of my actual flight experience will be positive transfer into x-plane. What I will probably end up doing is mapping the keys to MSFS key commands.

 

The only gotcha is that if you set up the joystick hat keys to pan around the 3D Cockpit view, they do not rotate around the plane in Circle view. I get around this by using the TrackIR for the cockpit view and mapping the joystick left/right/up/down rather than the view rotate commands, to make it move around the plane in Circle view.

 

Even though I have a hat switch I rarely use it to look around. I don't have track IR (Yes I know, this should probably be on my buy list) but I do use the space bar then move the mouse to look around. I have a feeling this can be easily accomplished as the default x-plane map is the right click on the mouse.

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... What I will probably end up doing is mapping the keys to MSFS key commands.

 

Of course this your choice, and no one can hinder you to do so :lol:. But once you are used to the XP key commands, you will wonder why it was so complicated in MSFS. No joke ... !!

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First of all about how realistic airplanes flying in X-Plane, as real life pilot and X-Plane aircraft developer I can say that they are as good as they are build. What X-Planes offers is way more realistic tools to achieve a realistic flight model. There are crap flying things in FSX, as in X-Plane, no doubt.

 

UI is a thing that had many critics (for years). At a point seemed that everyone wanted it to change, only Austin had a different opinion! Mostly because people (like me) coming from FS found it... different. Yes it is. And thanks God, Austin was right! Since you start find your way through it, then go back to FSX and tell me which one is easier to use.

 

To me seems that X-Plane gives you and overall better flying feeling and feels concentrated to the things that matters more.      

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First of all about how realistic airplanes flying in X-Plane, as real life pilot and X-Plane aircraft developer I can say that they are as good as they are build. What X-Planes offers is way more realistic tools to achieve a realistic flight model. There are crap flying things in FSX, as in X-Plane, no doubt.

 

UI is a thing that had many critics (for years). At a point seemed that everyone wanted it to change, only Austin had a different opinion! Mostly because people (like me) coming from FS found it... different. Yes it is. And thanks God, Austin was right! Since you start find your way through it, then go back to FSX and tell me which one is easier to use.

 

To me seems that X-Plane gives you and overall better flying feeling and feels concentrated to the things that matters more.

I definitely agree, xplane does have a superior flight model for the majority of aircraft. It hands down wins with flight dynamics within actual atmospheric conditions. I have not used opus though, that program seems to do wonders with fsx/prepar3d. Although there is a video on YouTube which explains that if the air file is created very well using actual data (PMDG for example) fsx/prepar3d does have the better flight model on a case by case basis.

 

Someone should get to work combining the sims :P.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk 2

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