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hawkhero

Is PFPX worth the price?

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Hi, I us FSbuild now but am looking at a newer flight planning software. How good is PFPX? I just found SimBrief online and I like it so far. (and it's free). Any opinions on PFPX?

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Well, the PFPX is a little bit more customizable, including auto route building, fuel policies, scheduling, routing to alternate... But I feel the improvement is not worth the price.

 

At the other side, both programs are still missing some important features such as customizable cruise speed/CI per leg.

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Without a shadow of a doubt, PFPX is a product I'd recommend to ANYONE flying payware/complex stuff. Such a great tool, and it makes your life so much easier! 

 

 

 


At the other side, both programs are still missing some important features such as customizable cruise speed/CI per leg.

 

PFPX allows you to customize your cruise CI/Speed for each flightplan. 

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PFPX allows you to customize your cruise CI/Speed for each flightplan.

 

But not for each leg of flight plan.

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But not for each leg of flight plan.

 

I do not understand what you mean by each leg of the flightplan...

If I do LHR-JFK-LHR, I can plan for LHR-JFK to be at CI25 and JFK-LHR to be at CI45..

 

I don't think you can break it down further for your CI varying over your route.. I don't even think real airlines do that, do they?

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Any opinions on PFPX?

 

It's something I use to plan all my 737 flights and compared to vRoute you don't have to rely on there being a plan for the route you want to fly. There are occasional sales which make it a bargain. Check PC Aviator any other sites for sales.

 

PFPX is enhanced with TopCat but you need to make sure TopCat has a profile for your aircraft. PMDG are well catered for. TopCat will load the payload and fuel and calculate take-off trim and vSpeeds. The two are a great combination but as a flight planner I am also very happy with PFPX.

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I do not understand what you mean by each leg of the flightplan...

 

If I do LHR-JFK-LHR, I can plan for LHR-JFK to be at CI25 and JFK-LHR to be at CI45..

 

I don't think you can break it down further for your CI varying over your route.. I don't even think real airlines do that, do they?

For example: WP1 to WP5 = CI50. WP5 to WP8 = fixed cruise speed. WP8-WP10 = CI20

 

They do. Just look at what LIDO can do with flight plan and you will be amazed.

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Take a look at Simbrief. While it's not quite as sophisticated as PFPX, it's does a lot of the same things. The price is right too. It's free.

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For example: WP1 to WP5 = CI50. WP5 to WP8 = fixed cruise speed. WP8-WP10 = CI20

 

They do. Just look at what LIDO can do with flight plan and you will be amazed.

PFPX can of course do that!

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PFPX can of course do that!

 

Few months ago, I asked about that feature at this forum because I was interested to buy PFPX, but some guy told me that PFPX cannot do that. 

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I used FSBuild until I got PFPX. I also use Simbrief, mainly for the Jetstream 4100, which is not supported in PFPX. Since Simbrief does not produce its own routes I sometimes use FSBuild to do that and then continue with Simbrief.

 

PFPX is certainly the best flight planner of these three programs. The map, validation of European routes, easy inclusion of Nat-tracks all set it apart. However, Simbrief is not so far behind, just a bit more inconvenient to use.

 

I would say, if your budget is tight stick to Simbrief, but if you want the best then get PFPX.

 

Cheers,

Peter

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Few months ago, I asked about that feature at this forum because I was interested to buy PFPX, but some guy told me that PFPX cannot do that.

 

You can change altitude, cost index etc. around 10 times for a flight.

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Few months ago, I asked about that feature at this forum because I was interested to buy PFPX, but some guy told me that PFPX cannot do that.

 

You can change altitude, cost index etc. around 10 times for a flight.

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How does SimBrief fund their service? Does it also include a weather aspect so the service can determine what SIDs and STARs should be assigned?

 

PFPX does and can. That makes a difference.

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I ended up going with Simbrief and bought Aivlasoft EFB with the money I put aside for PFPX.

That way I got a great flight planner and great flight management system that also walked me through SID n STAR selections

 

Simbrief uses live weather but doesn't suggest SID /STARS

 

The biggest plus with PFPX is its ability to build routes. That's great unless your flying real world routes in that case your better off pasting a route from flightaware into Simbrief which then checks it off using navigraph data.

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How does SimBrief fund their service? Does it also include a weather aspect so the service can determine what SIDs and STARs should be assigned?

 

PFPX does and can. That makes a difference.

It includes weather aspect for enroute calculations, prints sig. wx charts, and wind charts with plotted route, prints metar/taf for dep/arr/alt airports...

 

Additionally, it suggests runways for take off/landing, but as it cannot build route, there's no way it can suggests SID/STAR. However, it recognizes manual input of SIDS/STARS as part of route, and validates if route is good for given airac. IFPS validation can be obtained via independent web site for free.

 

The real difference between PFPX and Simbrief is in automatic route builder. Is it worth of price? For some people - yes, for others - no.

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Thanks g_precentralis. Still not sure how they fund that service. No such thing as a free lunch eh? :smile:

 

I'm sure many use it but I still prefer what PFPX gives me.

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Thanks g_precentralis. Still not sure how they fund that service. No such thing as a free lunch eh? :smile:

 

I'm not sure if they have other source of funding other than donations.

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I have no idea how its funded. I can only say that I was skeptical until I tried it. The output is incredibly good.

 

Yes, it pulls the weather for departure and arrival and advises which runways are to be expected. You still have to select your own SID / STAR though as that part is not automatic.

 

Its free, all you have to do is register. Give it a go.

 

Check out the interactive help guide. At the end is sample flight plan output.

 

http://www.simbrief.com/system/guide.php

 

Having said that though, I think if you already have PFPX, you may as well make use of it having spent the money. 

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The PFPX route planning is only slightly better than FSBuild's or FSCommander's. For me only real world routes top the paid version of rfinder in route planning.

 

The fact, that PFPX pre-selects SID and STARs is quite nice, but when flying in Europe, it doesn't work as well because PFPX can only guess which runway might be in use and the weather might change between planning and the flight.

 

So even with PFPX, I'm importing a route I have created outside PFPX. This is why I use PFPX when flying with aircraft that have TOPCAT profiles. For everything else, it's either SimBrief or FSBuild for me.

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Here's another aspect of PFPX that I had forgotten about. The first year gave you free access to their weather server. My subscription just expired so it's about $15 USD to renew it. In theory, you were supposed to be able to use weather from Active Sky or FS Global Real Weather but apparently that part is not working. They are working on a fix but there's no telling when that will happen. I'm not sure if I want to sink more money into a utility that I paid a good price for to begin with.

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Thanks g_precentralis. Still not sure how they fund that service. No such thing as a free lunch eh? :smile:

 

I'm sure many use it but I still prefer what PFPX gives me.

 

Actually, if you go to the 'about' page of the website, you will see how its funded and supported. There is also some topics in the forum that explains the pains the website author went to keeping the service free. 

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Actually, if you go to the 'about' page of the website, you will see how its funded and supported. There is also some topics in the forum that explains the pains the website author went to keeping the service free. 

 

It was only mild curiosity. :wink:  As a satisfied PFPX owner I won't be moving. But it's good for the community people are prepared to offer such a service.

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Another fan of FSCommander here!  It combines the functions of a moving map, route planner and (some aspects) of an EFB.  

 

I bought PFPX when it came out, in truth (and this is very much a personal opinion) i don't like or use it greatly.  It probably comes into it's own when planning ETOPS routes for the 777 but it seems over complicated for smaller hops.  As the Gentleman above stated, the weather aspect has only worked with the PFPX subscription service, no idea if this will ever be fixed.

 

I tired Aivlasoft EFB, it looked really nice, i was sorely tempted to buy; three things stopped me:

Talk of a 2nd version coming out (shortly).

No detailed SID / STAR display on map, very difficult to know which one to take.

Requires a running process to work.

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