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C525B

Phenom 300 released...first impressions

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So, I used to fly a Phenom 100 professionally in real life, and that's essentially the reason I never bought the Carenado P100.  The 300 is very sexy, however, and although normal-me knew better, its temptation was irresistible to 4-beers-me.  "Alright!" I say, "let's make some bad decisions!"  Those of you adamant that we should be voting with our money will hate me for this.

 

The model and textures are, of course, gorgeous.  The effects they made for the LED beacon and strobes are really cool and spot-on.  The exterior sound is very good, but the interior sound is muffled and weird as is typical with Carenado now (I think they're trying to make it sound like you have your headset on, but I think their success with that is debatable).  Also, they've recorded the aural annunciations using an odd mix of male and female (call it Mr. and Mrs. Garmin) voices, which is not accurate.

 

Again, speaking without previous experience with the P100, I would have to guess that the G1000 system is mostly unchanged from that release.  I did read through the P100 forum and I noticed that no one was complaining about the autopilot.  This was a contrast to the Citation and Hawker forums, where the autopilot's non-functionality was discussed ad nauseum.

 

I'm sad to report that the P300 autopilot is even more useless than the Hawker's.  Because of this absurd obsession with the pitch-based FLC mode, Carenado has perhaps taken the working A/P from the P100 and broken it.  The 300 has basically the same FLC behavior as the Hawker, but with the added twist that ALL the vertical modes are now broken, too.  That is to say: the autopilot will not level-off at selected altitude using any vertical mode.  In the out-of-the-box Hawker, it was possible to capture altitudes if you knew the tricks, but it appears that is not the case with the P300.  There are no tricks to it...it just doesn't work.  I spent 30 minutes climbing and diving all over the sky and I couldn't make it automatically capture an altitude under any circumstances.

 

Despite obvious backwards progress with the autopilot, I actually really like this one!  It seems to me that the P100 may have been one of Carenado's more polished jet releases, and thankfully that gave them a solid platform on which to build the P300.  The systems seem as good as one could reasonably expect from them.  The G1000 is really not bad.  It's not as polished and functional as Flight1's, but really not bad.  I don't see the need to mess with anything there, other than re-coding the cold & dark set-up to reflect correct switch positions (it's an Embraer product...if the switch has an AUTO position, it just stays there) and fixing some CAS messages that appear erroneously.

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Carenado have previously decided to use components from a previous release and making further modifications to them, not always for the better.

 

IMHO, they would be well advised to start afresh on the autopilot - but they do not seem to value my advice.. :nea:

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I replaced the Autopilot with another from another model, it works fine

 

one thing i have noticed, you cant enter gps points by keyboard, theres a small bug there that generates multiples of the single key press, not a problem, just added another gps and works fine

 

all in all, not too bad, still a few little things but every developer has problems

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OK, so...I wanted to know if simply replacing the P300 autopilot with the gauge from the Carenado P100 would actually be a good solution for those simmers who own both, and I was able to determine that it is NOT.

 

Using LINDA and Doug Dawson's xml_vars gauge, I was able to determine that the 3D knobs on the autopilot are not manipulating the global A:vars in FSX...they control L:vars which Carenado has made for their "custom autopilot".  Therefore simply using the P100 autopilot gauge will probably not work seamlessly because I'm thinking that one still uses the default autopilot functions in FS.  What I need to do is create a gauge which takes the inputs from the knobs, and passes them to the A:vars in FSX.  My only goal right now is to make the A/P usable by returning it to default FSX behavior.

 

When I was messing with XML for the Hawker, I tried to understand how Carenado programmed their custom autopilot to see if it was easily fixable.  Unfortunately their code was really badly organized (amateur opinion) so I couldn't really get a handle on it.  I never worked up the motivation to attempt actually fixing their autopilot, but now that I think about it...what I'm talking about above might actually be workable for the P300 and the Hawker (especially since much of the code was literally copied from the Hawker).  You just have to pass the L:vars to the appropriate A:vars (again, the global FSX ones), and then re-code the autopilot gauge so that the buttons (which are not 3D parts of the model) on the autopilot activate the appropriate FSX autopilot modes.  Your FLC won't work with this solution, but everything else will be more stable and more usable.

 

Yeah, so...yeah.  More on that later...

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For the life of me, I do not understand why they keep using XML for these things.  RPN coding is so bass ackwards and there is a point of diminishing returns when it comes to something complex.  It's going to be prone to bugs and it's hard on framerates.  The one benefit is that people can go into the code to fix it after the sale. 

 

If you turn on logging for buttons/switches in FSUIPC or use the tracer in LINDA it might help you figure out the LVars to use if you put the original autopilot back in for a test.

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So, Carenado insist on repeating old code, and old components ? And still charge more money ?

 

Fine if they were re-using correct code, and components that work how they should. But the history of Carenado is to repeat those same mistakes. Over and over and over. They never get better, just worse as their reach increasingly exceeds their grasp.

 

I see the odd Carenado customer insists on following their lead. Fortunately they at least are becoming fewer with every "new" release.  :drinks:

 

We can all call that a small victory, even if we apparently still need a victim telling us what we all were only so aware of - It's a bugged release. And it repeats fundamental errors from lessons that should have been learned long ago.  =@

 

That's Carenado !  :Shame On You:

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Paul,

I have to agree with you about that lack and care and would also like to say that I was a guy in the past that bought everything Carenado put out.  On release day I was one of the first guys to buy their products.  That's changed!  After following the forums here, and seeing gripe after gripe and yet they do nothing about it( or very little) I've decided to take my funds elsewhere.  Will I never buy from them again???? No I'm not saying that.  There are some things they do well.  Their graphics are beyond excellent.  They also have offered a wider variety of aircraft that any other developer out there.  However, they don't want to become a top notch company! This is what irks me to no degree.  Guys like Burt Stolle and Bert Pieke( as well as many others willing to make our hobby one of the best) could make them one of the best in the business if they were to get over this "you can't tell me nothing" attitude.  Just the mere fact that they don't have dedicated forums or even check these here speaks volumes about their attitudes.  I'd venture to say there are lots more like myself that have decided to hold on to their wallets.  I think they've just moved on or don't care to say so.

 

Gary

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For your consideration, we have a member review portal where you may write up your thoughts and offer a score based on how the add-on stacked up in specific categories.

 

http://www.avsim.com/reviews

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Chase,

 

One can't review something one doesn't own, and you can't own it until you pay for it, or have it supplied on the basis of a review - are you really suggesting that we should first pay for the opportunity to critique it ? When there is no refund available ? When the trading history and development support from Carenado is so well-known ? 

 

What is attempted here is to use "people power" to avoid such costly mistakes and drive a climate of change into the thick heads of these Carenado developers. And presumably, Alabeo (same tar, same brush).

 

Don't really need a review to establish that !

 

I don't know about others, but in my opinion this forum is doing exactly what is needed. I keep an eye on this forum, not the reviews. 

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I will say this about Corenado, you don't have to buy the same plane twice if you own FSX and PD3. So many developers are really sticking it to the user when they charge again for the same plane and usually charge more for the PD3 version. 

 

That is one of the reasons why I would buy a Corenado plane,,well that and the fact that I am a graphics guy and sometimes value great graphics over some small system bugs that I would not use anyway. 

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I will say this about Corenado, you don't have to buy the same plane twice if you own FSX and PD3. So many developers are really sticking it to the user when they charge again for the same plane and usually charge more for the PD3 version. 

 

That is one of the reasons why I would buy a Corenado plane,,well that and the fact that I am a graphics guy and sometimes value great graphics over some small system bugs that I would not use anyway. 

 

Small system bugs sure, I can live with that but not groudbreaking navigation issues where you need months of community support to get it working right and carenado STILL releases new product with SAME issues.

That is a BIG difference and just shows how much they don't care.

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Can anybody of you buyers tell me more about these two specific points?

 

1. FLC

2. Leveling off at target altitude, both in climb and in descent.

 

I have reports from people from other sites that 2. is in fact working as expected, while 1. needs some minor corrections. Interestingly, however, people who are claiming that leveling off is working properly seem to use all a Saitek Multi Panel. Now I read the report by C525B, which I hold in high regard, and I am puzzled. Reports so far are conflicting.

 

Thanks

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Small system bugs sure, I can live with that but not groudbreaking navigation issues where you need months of community support to get it working right and carenado STILL releases new product with SAME issues.

That is a BIG difference and just shows how much they don't care.

 

Yeah, big +1 there.  Think about it.  A lot of people that are looking at the 300 are looking it with hopes that at least some of the issues in the 100 would be addressed...a kind of bug fix release.   As it is, they would now have to go back and fix all those past aircraft from the TBM on...if they'd do that...as a form of apology to the folks who've bought their stuff on faith.  Also, if Carenado fixed these issues a while back they'd be releasing a series of wonderful aircraft instead of release after release of junk. 

 

Perhaps, where they fell down on all this was the fact that they could count on the community to fix their bugs.  But these bugs are big and complicated so the community can't.  So their lackluster systems have no one, anymore, that can fill the gap that has now grown very, very large. 

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This is mainly an airliner forum so I understand the fascination with intricate procedures but for me I will just stick a GTN 750 in it and go fly.

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Chase,

 

One can't review something one doesn't own, and you can't own it until you pay for it, or have it supplied on the basis of a review - are you really suggesting that we should first pay for the opportunity to critique it ? When there is no refund available ? When the trading history and development support from Carenado is so well-known ? 

 

What is attempted here is to use "people power" to avoid such costly mistakes and drive a climate of change into the thick heads of these Carenado developers. And presumably, Alabeo (same tar, same brush).

 

Don't really need a review to establish that !

 

I don't know about others, but in my opinion this forum is doing exactly what is needed. I keep an eye on this forum, not the reviews. 

 

The Member Submitted Reviews portal is an additional way for fellow sim enthusiasts to share their experiences in a structured environment with a scoring system.  There is no right or wrong way to share your experiences, opinions, or observations--whether it's in a forum or as an in depth review.  The only caveat is that if you are submitting a review in our member reviews portal you must own the product (for obvious reasons).  Keep doing what's right for you!

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This is mainly an airliner forum so I understand the fascination with intricate procedures but for me I will just stick a GTN 750 in it and go fly.

 

 

Is it possible to shoehorn the GTN in the MFD but still have the engine gauges on the left ? This release is a real shame because the exterior model is the best yet out of Carenado...... The avionics are useless though and the the autopilot is a mess as usual.....

 

I would rather have the GTN in this as unrealistic as it is.... At least it would be flyable........

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I think if you look at the Phenom 100 sections and then look for GTN 750 you will find that it has been done and you should be able to find out how from the op. The 300 looks like the same setup so should work just fine.

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I would rather have the GTN in this as unrealistic as it is.... At least it would be flyable........

YES!  I agree! 

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It would be nice if Carenado and team took some time off from releasing new aircraft and just went back and fixed all the ones they have already released....that would really show there commented to their products....Surprise us Carenado and do the right thing!!! Slim chance of that happening.

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Can anybody of you buyers tell me more about these two specific points?

 

Hawker working here cant believe it but with a multi-panel

 

This is all I have done and man it works

 

This was in VOR2 on mfd 

 

Add this to the aircraft.cfg file both of them (lite version)

 

autothrottle_available=    1 
autothrottle_arming_required= 1
 
Once in vc I turn on flc alert - not sure if that matters
 
I have one xml file from Bert that gets placed in your panel folder (in lite version panel folder also) - this was because the altitude was not changing visually in vc when turning Multi-panel knob
 
In your panel.cfg file, add a line:
 
[Vcockpit01]
...
Gauge13=CustomKnobs!Saitek1, 0,0,1,1
 
==================================================
 
Now using it I change the altitude with Multi-panel
Turn vs up around 700 to 1200 on Multi-panel - doesnt matter - higher the vs the quicker you get there
leave it alone and the thing levels off right at the altitude - same goes for descending to an altitude ( lower vs knob)
 
==================================================
 
Works great here - YEAH

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Thank you brother, but I have the Hawker already working this way. I implemented those tweaks too.

My question was addressed to buyers of the Phenom 300. As I said, I am reading conflicting reports about FLC and other altitude related features. Some claim they work, some that they don't.

 

One interesting detail in your post: you are using Saitek Multi Panels, just as FSMania and other Phenom 300 owners I talked to, who claim A/P features are working as expected. This might be an hint or just a wrong assumption, I don't know yet.

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Thank you brother, but I have the Hawker already working this way. I implemented those tweaks too.

My question was addressed to buyers of the Phenom 300. As I said, I am reading conflicting reports about FLC and other altitude related features. Some claim they work, some that they don't.

 

One interesting detail in your post: you are using Saitek Multi Panels, just as FSMania and other Phenom 300 owners I talked to, who claim A/P features are working as expected. This might be an hint or just a wrong assumption, I don't know yet.

 

Hi Buddy forgot mention I use left mouse click on flc button in vc - no multi-panel action there

 

Yup could be that you only have to change autopilot lines mentioned above - not sure but luv this Multi-panel works great on many aircraft - have not tried it on pmdg and axe yet - need to give that a go

 

Negative  out of the box on pmdg and axe - guess have to give Linda a go when I have a chance

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Thanks Rich for your input and fixes.  I was looking at the Phenom 100 forum and saw one of our long time members who posted a 3 part video of a flight to Jackson Hole http://www.avsim.com/topic/457279-new-carenado-phenom-100-video-on-youtube/.  He explains in detail how the G1000 is set up and even set up a flight plan.  It's the same one that's in the Phenom 300.  He also recommended turning off the co-pilot's G1000 as it is not needed and it saves on fps.  The Phenom 100 and 300 VC's look almost exactly the same.  In any case, it all works as verified by the videos in the Phenom 100 forum. 

 

Best regards,

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I have to say I don't feel the hate for Carenado. I purchased the Phenom 300 with no qualms. It fits my GA, non-procedural style of flying to a tee.

 

Using SimLauncherX I can set my departure airport, my flight path as defined by Plan G, and load up the family (including the two black lab mooses @ 100 lb each) with sufficient gas to get where we want to go. I start my OPUS FSI weather engine, and fire off P3D 2.5 with everything preset.

 

Once the sim has loaded I do a cold and dark start, including setting the LFE in the G1000. All the knobs and switches seem to work, and I can preset the target altitude and vertical speed on the AP. Set HDG to a gentle intercept of NAV and we are ready to roll.

 

Take her out to the runway, preload the engines but keeping N1, ITT, and N2 below orange (ITT saturates first), and off we go. Once airborne I have found that a shallow climb to get some airspeed really pays dividends on ultimate climb rate, and since I don't ever fiddle with FMC programming, *I* have to control all these variables. Keep the speed up, engine loads in range, adjust as necessary. She levels off just fine at target altitude and we are set until we begin our descent. About the only real gripe I have is the G1000 displays Distance to Target instead of Time to Target. I try to do the conversion in the head, but when everything is triple digits it makes it kind of hard for this old noggin to calculate. 

 

The frame hit is there, but not as bad as some I have seen. I guess it is a natural "trade secrets" type of thing, but the senors at Carenado really could learn a thing or two from RealAir and A2A about efficient modelling.

 

Speaking of senors, I have contacted Carenado support maybe ten times, and each time I have been answered back. A little Spanish honey (and respectful attitude) goes a long ways. The last dialogue I had with them was multiple exchanges, all for a problem that was not their fault as I happily informed them at conclusion.

 

I would love to post some pics (she really is a gorgeous aircraft - I can see why she was the recent top selling bizjet according to Wikipedia), but I have not discovered the keys to posting pics at AVSIM. As expected, eye-candy!

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