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briansommers

reality xp? or Mindstar.. so confused as to which one?

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a lot of my oinline flying group has the reality xp gps and loves it.. everytime I keep reading about it.. with its out of date database.. it makes me nervous.. then there is Mindstar.. but never really heard of it much.. very confusing as to which one to get..


Ciao!

 

 

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Mindstar GNS430/530:

 

- Works inside P3D/P3Dv2

- Has updatable database for additional $40 per year

- Has no limitations on number of units and crossfill between them - all included in base price of $50

- Has less GNS fuctions implemented (i. e. no terrain view)

- Has a good (or even great) support 

- Development continues, so the new features to appear for no extra cost

- Has several known bugs to the moment, but devs work on them


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Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought I read a post by the Mindstar developer saying that they do not provide vertical navigation on the approach.  So no glideslope for LPV/LNAV approaches.  If true, that would be a deal breaker for me to have a GPS that can't do approaches.

 

Please correct me if this has changed as I do not mean to spread rumours, but I did read that in a post in early January.

 

--Don


Don Polidori

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Reality XP is a ridiculously overpriced product with no official support or active development, and with no clear path forward where things like future Windows versions are concerned (as it's simply a wrapper around a trainer software package from Garmin that was developed for XP-era Windows). Also it can only be updated by using official Garmin aviation database updates, which you can buy for the full price that Garmin charges for updates of real-life GNS430/530 units, or you might get current data through non-official channels from people who have bought the Garmin data - but I'm not sure that this is a Good Idea in the longer run.

 

On the plus side, it's running in a process space outside of FSX, which means it doesn't contribute to the memory footprint of the FSX process and it can make use of cores that aren't used by FSX. Also it is probably the most feature complete offering, as it was originally intended as an official GNS trainer.

 

My money will be on (and with, at some point this year) Mindstar, as the previous paragraphs might have hinted at. My one gripe with Mindstar at the moment is the very intransparent communication re implemented features, and support for plane addons.

 

On features, the first answer is: "We implement everything the original GNS does, as our unit is used for real world training." Then, when someone asks for a feature of the real world unit that is missing in the Mindstar implementation, the answer is "we only implement those features that are actually relevant for our real-world-training customers." So... a bit hard to get a clear picture from that, as I'm not one of the real-world-training customers.

 

On addons, if I got a clear message from Mindstar and RealAir that the GNS430/530 can be made to work with the Dukes, I'd have already bought the unit (for A2A there has been official support announced for the P-51D Civ and the C172 too I believe). But the RealAir dukes only let me switch to the external-gauge panels when I have the Reality XP stuff installed (which I don't, as I don't own it) and I haven't gotten an answer yet on how I might switch to those panels even without a Reality XP installation, and Mindstar is basically keeping out of the entire discussion and refer to the addon makers. Some trial and error by other form member in another form apparently have shown that you can simply drop in the Mindstar gauge into the Reality XP Duke panel, but only if you can get it to use those panels in the first place...

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I would get Reality XP. It's the same as the real thing. Yes, a bit high in price, but if you plan to use it, then its worth it. If you fly the A2A Cessna 172 with RXP installed, along with their fantastic Bendix King avionics, its as real as it gets.


Jim Shield

Cybersecurity Specialist

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Guest Mik75

+1 for the RXP gauges, they're worth the money. It can't get any better cause they use the original Garmin trainer software.

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As long as you don't require P3D - RXP is the way to go. It's more realistic than mindstar - in fact it functions exactly like the real units.

PM me if you're concerned about older navdata.

 

Obviously the downsides are no official support (but there are a few users here than can help with almost any issue), no regular official database updates, no p3d usage.


|Ryan Butterworth|

| i7 4790K@4.4GHz | 32GB RAM | EVGA GTX 1080Ti | ASUS Z97-Pro | 1TB 860 Evo | 500GB 840 Evo Win10 Pro | 1TB Samsung 7200rpm | Seasonic X750W |

 

 

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Another recommendation for RXP so long as you're not in P3D.  Right now, the Mindstar units can only be installed (a manual install) in a limited number of panels - default planes like the 172 with GPS should work OK, but most planes with 3D panels are going to be problematic.  Hopefully going forward that will change as developers begin to support Mindstar integration in their planes.  The gauges can, of course, be used as popups.  The other disadvantage to the units is their current lack of support for precision WAAS approaches.  Horizontal guidance works, but vertical apparently does not.  Going forward I hope the questions of integration and WAAS support can be addressed, as I would love to become a Mindstar supporter.

 

On the plus side, as mentioned, Mindstar will work in P3D, so if that's of concern to you, they're the only game in town.  As others have mentioned, the easily updated data is also to be considered.

 

I also wanted to provide a bit of counterpoint to two of the criticisms I often hear leveled against the RXP units - cost and the fact that they're "just" a wrapper to the Garmin trainer.  Cost I want to specifically address as value.  The units and how well they work are the single biggest factor preventing me from moving to P3D.  They're that good.  If you fly GA, especially GA IFR, they're indispensable.  Coupled with the fact that I amortize the costs over, I believe, 11 planes now, I have no question that they've provided good value for the money paid.

 

As for the "wrapper" issue - first of all, if what RXP had done was easy, others would've done it for less.  Add in the fact that using the Garmin trainer as the base means you get FULL Garmin functionality, and the fact that most of the heavy lifting being provided outside of FSX process space translates to better performance and lighter VAS footprint and it becomes obvious that there are major advantages to the way this was accomplished.  The RXP units actually offer better performance than the default FSX GPS on my system.

 

Support can be a concern, and is the major reason I temper what would otherwise be an unconditional recommendation.  However, most issues have long since been addressed, and community support is excellent.

 

For what it's worth...

 

Scott

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Another recommendation for RXP so long as you're not in P3D.  Right now, the Mindstar units can only be installed (a manual install) in a limited number of panels - default planes like the 172 with GPS should work OK, but most planes with 3D panels are going to be problematic.  

 

Not exactly right, if I understood this correctly - for VC panels that are RXP-ready, it supposedly possible to simply point to the Mindstar DLLs instead of the RXP ones. There is no real reason why this shouldn't work really, as the 3D models obviosly have to be the same (it's a GNS530/430 after all). I've been told this works for the A2A C172, the P-51D and the GNS430 in the Dukev2 (and so very likely also for the GNS530 in the Duke, as well as the same in the TDuke). That's the point in my post above - as soon as I'm shown a way how to switch the Dukes to the RXP panels without actually having to have them installed, I'd give that a try. 

 

Maybe someone with the RXP stuff and a Duke can help me with some discovery here? Probably would be sufficient to log file or registry accesses when opening the Duke configurator, I could tell you how to do that...

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Reality XP all the way.

 

People talk about there being no support but ;-

 

i). The product is very mature and bug free.

 

ii). You will get support, from places like AVSIM and other helpful simmers. 

 

If you have ever used a real GNS 430 / 530 well, the Reality XP is almost identical.   Things like direct legs in the middle of a flight plan just work beautifully. Others claim the same functionality but it's never quite right.

 

I left P3D2 mainly because I could not use my RXP any more.  With the usage I've had from RXP since I bought in 2007, it works out ridiculously cheap.

 

I haven't looked too much at Mindstar - I'm just not won over on that organisations approach to communication and customer interaction.  (eg.. the whole "we might sell it to simmers, we might not" debacle plus the way some Mindstar representatives have responded to feedback and suggestions.   That's just my opinion and I freely admit it's based on the organisation and how they go communicate; not their products.   But hey, "I buy people"    :wink:

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RXP, no doubt. PM Ryan about navdata, he can assist.


Ron Hamilton

 

"95% is half the truth, but most of it is lies, but if you read half of what is written, you'll be okay." __ Honey Boo Boo's Mom

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Not exactly right, if I understood this correctly - for VC panels that are RXP-ready, it supposedly possible to simply point to the Mindstar DLLs instead of the RXP ones. There is no real reason why this shouldn't work really, as the 3D models obviosly have to be the same (it's a GNS530/430 after all). I've been told this works for the A2A C172, the P-51D and the GNS430 in the Dukev2 (and so very likely also for the GNS530 in the Duke, as well as the same in the TDuke).

 

Note I didn't say it's not possible, only that it can be problematic.  The point being that the best situation for Mindstar users (and potential users like me, as I'm interested for possible future P3D use) will be when/if developer supported integration begins to happen.  I expect this support will eventually come.  I've followed the A2A 172 discussions (it's one of the planes I use the RXP in) and understand that some users have made it work with A2A's 172, with a few potential gotcha's. 

 

 

 

 


Maybe someone with the RXP stuff and a Duke can help me with some discovery here? Probably would be sufficient to log file or registry accesses when opening the Duke configurator,

 

From those same discussions and others, I understand that RealAir have been contacted and have so far not provided information on this.  If you're a RealAir customer I expect that would be the best avenue to pursue.

 

Scott

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Note I didn't say it's not possible, only that it can be problematic.  The point being that the best situation for Mindstar users (and potential users like me, as I'm interested for possible future P3D use) will be when/if developer supported integration begins to happen.  I expect this support will eventually come.  I've followed the A2A 172 discussions (it's one of the planes I use the RXP in) and understand that some users have made it work with A2A's 172, with a few potential gotcha's. 

 

 

 

 

From those same discussions and others, I understand that RealAir have been contacted and have so far not provided information on this.  If you're a RealAir customer I expect that would be the best avenue to pursue.

 

Scott

Ok then we're on the same page.

 

I own both Dukes and have contacted them, but no useful answer so far. Keeping me fingers crossed...

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