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neucoas

ORBX AU, opinions and performance

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Hi everyone, i was thinking to purchase ORBX AU SP4 as i have few bucks to spend! It's a shame I did not get on time to the sale, but my room needed new paint!  :P


 


I mostly do GA flying, but at some point i'd like to try the light airliners (dash8) so i thought that a huge region will be the best.


 


I want to know your opinions against the other NA regions, mostly on performance, attractions and quality (Considering Central Rockies too).


 


I did some research and saw screenshots with mostly 15-20FPS on the counter, so this really push me back.


 


My sistem is not high end, i own a i5 3470 and a GTX 660Ti SC 3GB, but my sim is pretty light, and I'm planning to do a full reinstall of windows soon.


 


So thats it, thanks in advance!


 

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I have AU and it's a very nice region, perhaps not on a par with some of their later regions, though I don't have any American regions to answer your question directly so I'm comparing to European ones, but very nice and when combined with the OZx and Ant's Aussie Airfields freeware, it's a very good buy, especially on the basis of km^2 per dollar.  And the OZx airfields and farm strips are a good enough reason in themselves to own Orbx AU, especially if you like weird little farm strips and *ahem* "non standard" approaches....   :lol:

 

As for framerates, I don't have a particularly sim-optimised machine (specs in my profile) and I can get everything from butter smooth to slideshow, depending on settings.  You WILL have to compromise on settings to keep your frame rate high, but with GA or even the Majestic Q400 (one of the lightest impact high quality airliners going), you should be able to find a balance that works, and it can't be any worse than default scenery  :ph34r:

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Well, I'll toss my two cents in... ^_^

 

Being their first region, the ground textures are perhaps a bit less refined than some of their latest, but still very good, and at least on par with PNW, in my opinion. Unlike the other regions, it doesn't automatically install terrain mesh, but they do offer a mesh download in their freeware section just in case you don't have one.

 

The other important thing to note is that unlike their other regions, they didn't touch the small GA airfields either. However, they really didn't need to, as there is many, many, many freeware airports that are designed to work with the region over at OZx.  A bit of work to get them all installed, but many of them are gems.  In addition to those, Orbx themselves offer 7 freeware airports for AU as well.

 

Anyhow, I quite enjoy it as a region; a lot of places to fly, some diverse scenery, and a lot of value for very little money.  I think it gets overshadowed these days by all of the newer releases, but I've always felt it's well worth it.

 

As far as performance goes, I've never had an issue keeping my frames locked at 30 over the basic region.  I do have a few of the payware offerings for the region though, and as is typical for older Orbx releases, they can be a bit harder on performance.

 

Edit:  I forgot about Ant's freeware offerings, but looks like it got covered by the previous poster!

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Thanks both! You'd say that the performance on heavy areas (canberra, sydney? is similar than the newer regions (like San Francisco, Seattle)? Maybe the 'newest' technologies will make flying over these areas "smoother"

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Thanks both! You'd say that the performance on heavy areas (canberra, sydney? is similar than the newer regions (like San Francisco, Seattle)? Maybe the 'newest' technologies will make flying over these areas "smoother"

 

Whilst not currently in a position to directly compare, not having San Fran or Seattle, I would expect your autogen settings to have way more impact than the technology differences.  In terms of FPS for similar areas at the same settings, I've not noticed a big difference.

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I've been all over Orbx Australia in the Q400.  My hardware specs are nowhere near bleeding edge (not even as good as what you have) and I've not had any frame rate issues even in the more densely populated areas.

 

I highly recommend it and think it still stands up to any other Orbx region available.

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I did hear they are working on their older AU airports to refine their performance, YBBN and YSCB are quite heavy on frames.

 

I find their PNW region is a personal favourite, amazing detail, you can fly VFR and follow roads, rivers and valleys from a real world VFR chart, and the collection of airports is quite extensive.

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YBBN and YSCB are quite heavy on frames.

I have both airports, YBBN smashes my system, even with the detail turned down. No problems with YSCB, it is a nice airport to fly into... Of course I may be biased as it is my home town.

 

The great thing about AU is it is huge. Flying in the desolate outback is fun, coastlines are fun, so you get a whole lot of terrain for your dollar, especially if you are flying the Q400.

 

B.

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I have also had horrible performance with YBBN. Very disappointing as I love the other Orbx sceneries I have.

Ian

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YBBN and YMML both are hard airports on VAS and FPS. It took me 2 nights of work modifying those two airports to lower the VAS and gain descent performance. Now I can get a solid 25 to 30 FPS at them with descent VAS usage but it was a shame that I had to do all the modification myself after spending the money on them.

 

It's been years, but if I remember correctly,YBBN used up so much memory that if I tried to fly a circuit around the airport in the PMDG J41, I would almost get an OOM and the textures were very slow to load.

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I've had Orbx since it's initial release through to it's current SP4 version, it is an exceptional release, and it conjunction with OZx which covers a lot of the smaller airports around Australia (available from aussiex.org and is freeware) add to enjoyable flying  I've flown around Australia in GA fixed and rotary wing aircraft over the last 30 years and Orbx is very accurate to the real world. I had problems with ORBX YBBN, YMML and YSCB until I upgraded to an i7-4790K because of it's resource hungry libraries, this fixed the problems encountered. I use it in FSX, FSX-SE and P3D2.5 with now performance issues.

 

In short,  go for it! you won't be disappointed.

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Thanks guys! Last night i considered the NRM+CRM combo, as there is not huge metropolitan areas (FPS might not suffer) thoughts?

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Another benefit to the AU pack is the really excellent AI aircraft freeware package. For Oz it includes both GA and Commercial aircraft. Go to the freeware page on the Orbx site and download. There is a pack for PNW as well, and it really adds a lot to busy areas like KSEA and KPDX.

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Thanks guys! Last night i considered the NRM+CRM combo, as there is not huge metropolitan areas (FPS might not suffer) thoughts?

 

Well, I'm partial to NRM, since I live within it.  However, in all honesty it's probably one of the least desirable regions compared to their other efforts.  Lots of trees. :rolleyes:  There's a lot of rugged country included as well, but nothing really stands out.  There's a few areas which can be challenging performance wise as well; add CEF4 and almost any upgraded CYYC, turn on a bit of AI, and watch the frames dip... Another potential drawback is the lack of payware airports for the region; there's very little out there.  Don't get me wrong, I enjoy the region a lot, but that's only because I can fly to places I've been many times.

 

If your thought is to bypass AU because of performance concerns, I wouldn't worry.  AU is such a big region, with vast unpopulated areas in-between those brilliant freeware gems, that you'll easily be able to find somewhere to fly that won't be a concern in regards to frame-rates.  Truth be told, almost every single region has it's performance 'heavy' areas, especially if you turn up the sliders.

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If your thought is to bypass AU because of performance concerns, I wouldn't worry.  AU is such a big region, with vast unpopulated areas in-between those brilliant freeware gems, that you'll easily be able to find somewhere to fly that won't be a concern in regards to frame-rates.  Truth be told, almost every single region has it's performance 'heavy' areas, especially if you turn up the sliders.

I am not really convinced with AU and the fact that if i want to get non-default airport  (like others regions) i have to load my sim with 2 or 3 GB more and lots of library entries.. And it could kill my load times or framerate!

 

I sound like a girl i know, but a light sim is important for me  :ph34r: As i dont know the region well, if you could suggest 2 or 3 good performance near freeware GA-Airports (LOL) to use as home-base, will be great! Or tell me your fauvorites ones of the region  :lol:

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I am not really convinced with AU and the fact that if i want to get non-default airport (like others regions) i have to load my sim with 2 or 3 GB more and lots of library entries.. And it could kill my load times or framerate!

 

Any Orbx region has a ton of overhead in file space and library entries.  The only difference between AU and the other regions is that you have to install some of it yourself.  Which just means that the cost / value benefit is far greater, simply because there is so much freeware.

 

Also worth noting, is that you (or anyone, for that matter), should always look to actively maintain their scenery library.  When you talk about loading it down with multiple GB's and many scenery entries killing your load times, you should really always look at whether you need all that stuff being loaded.  If you're not actively flying there, disable it in / remove it from your library!

 

 

but a light sim is important for me

 

In addition, not to blast the Orbx products, for so many of them are simply superb, but Orbx products and the phrase 'light sim' really don't often go hand in hand...

 

A lighter sim approach would be FTX Vector + FTX Global + FTX Global freeware airports.  You could exchange that for UTX + GEX + freeware AFCADS from the Avsim library if so desired.  Magnitudes lighter. ^_^

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Any Orbx region has a ton of overhead in file space and library entries.  The only difference between AU and the other regions is that you have to install some of it yourself.  Which just means that the cost / value benefit is far greater, simply because there is so much freeware.

 

Also worth noting, is that you (or anyone, for that matter), should always look to actively maintain their scenery library.  When you talk about loading it down with multiple GB's and many scenery entries killing your load times, you should really always look at whether you need all that stuff being loaded.  If you're not actively flying there, disable it in / remove it from your library!

 

 

 

In addition, not to blast the Orbx products, for so many of them are simply superb, but Orbx products and the phrase 'light sim' really don't often go hand in hand...

 

A lighter sim approach would be FTX Vector + FTX Global + FTX Global freeware airports.  You could exchange that for UTX + GEX + freeware AFCADS from the Avsim library if so desired.  Magnitudes lighter. ^_^

I got your point, but Global+Vector is expensive for me and im not interested on it for the moment.  :P

 

Thanks for posting, I think i will buy AU. Any aiport recommendations?

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I have almost all Orbx regions and airports (but not any of the global products).  I still find AU to be one of the best scenery packages they have offered.  It is an older product, but the textures are quite good and believable.  I still fly there often.

 

As for performance, Seattle and San Fran are notoriously hard on frame rates.  Several of the Orbx airports, particularly the large ones (and Cairns) are also hard on frame rates.  The rest of them, and the regions themselves, cause very little if any hit on performance.  There are quite a few of the smaller airports that are very good.  Aeropelican is one of my favorites.  Warnervale, nearby, makes a nice pair.  Caloundra is also a favorite, as is YBUN.  

 

But get Ant's airports.  Several of them are very good indeed, including the one on the coast, whose name I can't recall, and Boonah, in particular.  You won't quickly tire of his nice little airports.  

 

Australia gives you a lot of beautiful territory.  

 

As for the NA regions, PNW is still, perhaps, my favorite, although Northern California is very good indeed.  OzX also makes a set of freeware airports for the San Juan region that are a lot of fun for small light aircraft like the Cub.  Bowerman, a free airport, is one of their very best, and Vashon island and West Wind, also free, are also very nice, so PNW is good in respect of freeware airports as well.  

 

If you haven't yet, download the PNW demo and Bowerman and give it a try.  

 

None of this comes without significant cost in HD space, but I wouldn't fly FSX at all if it weren't for Orbx scenery.  So, it's worth it.  

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I run AU on my i5 2500k at 4.6gz along with an EVGA  2 Gig Nvidia 770. I used to have OOM issues with YMML and YBBN in my 32bit win pre DX10 fixer days. Now it runs fine though I still turn the scenery complex down a bit for smoothness. Love flying Cairns to Alice Springs in a PMDG Quantas 737. Unlike the US there is little to see inland from the coastal cities. I have the FS Pilots 2010 terain mesh but the free one on ORBX is fine also. Like the prior replies I love flying around AU in the Q400 from smaller airports like Tamworth or from the smaller free OZx airports. I run UT2 instead of the free AI from ORBX. The free one was nice though when I used to use it before getting UT2. After this you have to get ORBX New Zealand for a close by destination :lol:

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