mars03

DA 42 Twin Star

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Well I've been an 'early adopter' on Carabeo's last few releases but I'm going to hold out on this one, until I hear some reports on how the FADEC, sounds, and FDE are. :smile:

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Impressive price tag for an addon with the functionality of a FSX default aircraft! Just to remind you: For only $15 more you can get an A2A Accusim addon.

And what again was the difference between Alabeo and Carenado...?

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Yes, a bit costly for a simple plane -- especially with the notorious Carenado glass nav systems. I wonder what it is about this offering that makes it worth the price jump?? Certainly not in line with prior "Alabeo" pricing. Previous Alabeo planes have been pretty nice....and my hangar has a bunch in the lineup.

 

Oh well, looking also for some commentary from first DA42 owners. Comments on the glass cockpit performance would be appreciated -- to see if they have cleaned it up at all(?) -- or maybe should just save the bucks for the Carenado Hawker 850 (if their attempt at "glass" using the Navigraph data system actually works right).... :lol:

 

Thanks!!!

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As expected; with the popularity of Alabeo planes rising, the prices rose as well. It's too bad because one of the strengths Alabeo had compared to Carenado was the value.

 

Is it a good plane at least?

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There are 2 favourable reviews of the new Alabeo DA42 on YouTube.

 

 

 

 

Even though it does seem to do the basics pretty well, $34.95 is just too expensive for this level of addon in my opinion.   I almost choked having to pass Carabeo $44.95 for the Citation, and although I like it. I don't think it was worth that price point for a minute...

 

.... but this one, nah, I'm going to give it a miss.   It's personal subjective opinion of course but it just feels like Carabeo are exploiting the FS community a little now, offering aircraft with almost default functionality at prices that are now between $30 - $50.   It's just too much.    If people pay these prices then by the time we see the Hawker, we may be paying $60 for it !!

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If people pay these prices then by the time we see the Hawker, we may be paying $60 for it !!

 

I wouldn't be surprised if it costs $60 of more. The Navigraph update for the Citation will cost $10, and it will come standard with the Hawker.

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I have to admit that I'm a huge Diamond Aircraft fan, so getting the DA42 wasn't optional. ^_^ Had the Iris and Eaglesoft before and both didn't cut it for me.

 

As the videos Craig has posted state, there's no doubt regarding the beauty of this Alabeo rendition. The sounds also fit the rather humble powerplants and won't spoil the fun with partial usage of default FSX ones as the competition for example did.

 

I shall continue with some unsorted impressions from the first few circuits and short routes, using FSX, that year 2006 software.:

 

Fps are among the best when it comes to Carenado glass planes but one should expect a significant drop in areas like Orbx Seattle plus rw weather. That's where I took her first and, while remaining flyable (20-ish), it's more like running a detailed airliner in that aspect. Outside of dense Seattle, means right after leaving KSEA, everything should be fine with some i7 powering the rig.

 

There's a very noticeable yaw tendency. Not talking about the one when altering the power setting since the counter-rotating props don't cause any trouble there. This yaw feels strange but I have to fly her some more. Since I started out with zero sim weather, something in the FDE is causing it and I can't really relate to it.

 

The rest of the FDE is actually very good. You don't get an overpowered plane like with Iris and while checking the cruise TAS at low-ish altitudes (between 6000 and 8000), the values were spot on when comparing them to the rather limited performance docs coming with the plane.

 

The rudder trim direction is reversed. If I set the indicator in the VC to establish a right trim, the trim tab tries to steer the rudder to a left tendency. Since we are on reversed things, seems like the gear sound for 'up' is the one for down, and the other way around.

 

I spare you praises for the great optics. You had enough of that in the above videos.

 

So how does the G1000 do? Well, on the main features like map display and some submenus, it's actually quite good and offers all measurement units for US and worldwide flyers plus a meters conversion in the gauge. When it comes to details, like the display of oil and coolant temps or voltages, expect some always yellow and/or red needle positions. One can fix that, I hope they will.

 

There's a certain panel in the cockpit, the real plane is using it for setting up the fluid based de-ice system. Alabeo calls it 'NO SMOKING'  :huh:  and you even get a few buttons to push ('SwitchNoSoking_Max' [sic], don't press it!), perhaps for some serious smoker avoidance. It also has some pump controls, again for the de-ice fluid, which are currently mapped to the fuel pump command.

 

Lights. Those are great and the internal ones even offer some multi-level setup as opposed to just a simple (and often too bright) ON! The external ones look impressive but lack a bit of range and width to be really useful. Still, your strobes will also illuminate the ground which is a nice detail for a GA plane.

 

The autopilot isn't particularly detailed and the VC gauge also lacks the 'FD' button, which the popup version has.

 

Details. Well the great point about the DA42 is/was that it's modelled Thielert Centurion engines consume Diesel or Jet fuel. Now, the current aircraft.cfg defines the fuel as Avgas, which gives you.. the wrong fuel. One can edit this easily and the sim instantly causes the specific fuel weight to rise, which in turn slightly affects your weight and balance. But why do I have to tweak that?

 

Regarding those engines, it seems like they established a nice curve for the lets call it sim FADEC. Means your hardware won't affect the mixture since the plane, like the real one, handles this. And the rpm also follow a pattern, which gives you the realistic 2300 at TO settings and then, at cruise power, automatically lowers them. The only slight annoyance might be that TO power alters the rpm between 2295 and some 2305 and numbers above 2300 shortly flash red.

 

Oh, the popup G1000 display seems to use a different setup than the VC one since the VC unit correctly disregards the lack of 'suction' (G1000 doesn't care!) while the standby instruments do follow that lack of resources. Now, if you popup the 2D G1000 display, it fails like the analogue gauges, which shouldn't happen-

 

Some nicely modelled VC details, in that sphere of high fidelity, are the safeguards on the fuel levers. You can turn them into the right position, so they actually prevent an accidental shutdown when you just want to cross-feed.

 

tl;dr: Wait for the SP1 B)

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So how does the G1000 do? Well, on the main features like map display and some submenus, it's actually quite good and offers all measurement units for US and worldwide flyers plus a meters conversion in the gauge.

 

Hi CoolP --- question about the above. Curious about the G1000 in that....can you navigate with it?? Can you enter a flight plan and/or Direct-To destination and does the autopilot fly it ??? Could you talk about that a little bit. Relative to navigation, what can you do???

 

Thanks!!!!

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Hi, Bob. Must admit, the first thing I do with the Carenado/Alabeo G1000 planes (some of them, like the TBM, are really cool) is to add a popup RXP GNS530 since this unit then handles the lets say streaming of correct data into the Carenado gauges.

 

So anytime I would set up a flight plan, I would do it in the RXP which then drives the C. gauges. I can confirm that direct-tos work well and that following a route is no problem, but I never tried the G1000 planing/routing abilities with more than that. Instead, edits are also done via the RXP.

 

Other opportunities would include programs like Aivlasoft EFB which also allows to live stream (you don't need to exit flying and load a flight plan).

 

Now, since you've asked, I shall later try to set up a simple plan purely in the G1000 and report back. I think Alabeo states that this should be possible, albeit based in the FSX internal nav data only.

 

So maybe there's more in those tuned default gauges (that's how I look at them in the planning/routing aspect) than I know. To be tested. B)

 

Edited. So I tried and got mixed results. First, yes, you can start and edit (multi stage) flight plans, so that's a level above the default gauges. But wanting to enter a simple VOR doesn't lead to a VOR in the actual plan but a blank.

 

Going from airports to airports works fine but I fail to get some VORs in there, even after seeing that the gauge recognised e.g. 'SEA' and asked for a confirmation. With NDBs, I succeeded though. :huh: Lets leave that open and assume user error.

 

If I load a flight plan from the default flight planner, I get the full picture and can edit the legs. So that's something which clearly exceeds the capabilities of the default gauges while staying far away from e.g. the Flight1 G1000 gauges or FMC planes.

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If I load a flight plan from the default flight planner, I get the full picture and can edit the legs. So that's something which clearly exceeds the capabilities of the default gauges while staying far away from e.g. the Flight1 G1000 gauges or FMC planes.

 

Hi Again --- OK, thanks much for the info. I am still up in the air (pun) on this one, but like you, I am a fan of Diamond A/C and have the others too which do not look as good as the Alabeo. Like you noted above, you can always fall back to the FSX flight planner and get a working plan.

 

Cheers!!!!  :Big Grin:

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I've sent them my list of possible bugs via their rather sophisticated support system. So lets hope SP1 brings some changes regarding those. Must admit that I have the feeling of having bought her too soon while, at the same time, with knowing that they mostly do just one SP, it might have been just right to generate some input.

 

As for the G1000 features, they offer a refund policy, so one could try if it offers enough to be happy without any extra gauges like the RXP. Still, I think SP1 is worth the wait since one can then judge how serious they take the fixes.

 

Mmm, now I have a DA20, DA40 and DA42. What a fleet! :lol:

 

If you get her, Bob, please report back as to how good or bad she performs for you.

 

Time for a DA42 section, eh? I've asked the mods to help us with that one.

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CoolP ---- yep, think I will wait for SP1 and see what comes along. Still not happy with the price point versus the aircraft. But we will see what comes along. Thanks again for the great feedback and reporting.

 

:lol: :Big Grin:

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Good informative (re)views here, for which thanks - but that price......  Pass on this one  :Yawn:

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Thanks for your kind words, guys. Just to update you on the progress re: my small list, Alabeo answered the ticket stating that they might consider including 'it' (they don't refer to a special item) in a future patch.

 

On the pricing level. You have a point. I'd like to see future Alabeo planes coming in a bit cheaper while staying equally impressive on the presentation. Found that this was their strength, their market. As an example, planes like their Extra 300 were spot on and a great fun to fly.

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For about $10 more than the Alabeo, you can get the Eaglesoft DA42 with a much better G1000 and great FDE, and the Arezone DA42 HD Soundset to replace the icky default engine sounds...

 

Eaglesoft DA42 : $34.95 (plus it's Flight1 with a 30-day moneyback guarantee) http://www.eaglesoftdg.com/DiamondDA42.htm

 

Arezone DA42 HD Soundset: $11.21 (Simmarket)

http://secure.simmarket.com/arezone-diamond-da42-soundset.phtml

 

Total: $46.16

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Eaglesoft DA42 with a much better G1000 and great FDE

I can not confirm the first item as the Eaglesoft, same as the Alabeo, uses a gauge with slightly enhanced default functionality. I actually see the Alabeo leading, when compared.

 

As for money back policies, Alabeo also offers one. But you have a point regarding the alternatives, albeit older looking ones.

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Phil, the icky sound set is of actual recordings of the Thielert Diesel engines. Don't forget the Mindstar KAP140 AP included... B)

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Nah, no offence to Ron but the ES DA-42 visuals aren't up to today's standards IMHO. I also had problems with the RPMs on that aircraft.   Despite it having RPM control, I always had to do the key assignment for Max RPM (Ctrl+F4) before taking off; otherwise my RPMs were too low and engine power was insufficient for take off.  This was with no prop assignment axes in FSX either.

 

I'd rather see the Alabeo patched up.  The sounds are pretty accurate on it, and I don't think the systems are that much behind the ES model.   Neither provides true FADEC simulation.   

 

Ron is right though, the sounds on the ES DA-42 are fine.  These are diesel powered TDI engines, and are supposed to sound like an old truck.  :smile:

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Hmm, the Mindstar Aviation KAP140 and the ability to easily drop the Mindstar G1000 into our DA42 adds value in our own opinion.

We'll bow out now as this isn't our forum. Only responded because we were mentioned. :rolleyes:

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Hi guys,

 

I have a few hours on the real thing. The RPM's hitting the red during take-off and the yaw thing is actually something I experienced during every flight. Your really need to work your feet during take-off. I thinking of buying it today. In real life it is a great plane to fly.

 

Cheers Jeroen

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Thanks for the information, Jeroen. Looking forward to your FDE review. :smile:

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