wombat457

ATC for FS9?

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I am looking for an ATC program for FS9 that works in-conjunction with FS Commander 9.

I have tried PFE but that is a pain in the rectum to run and doesn't always work for some reason.  I also have Radar Contact but that doesn't seem to read the FS flight plans and does what it thinks it should do.  
 

What I am looking for is a GOOD (payware or freeware) ATC program that I can import the flight plan into that I created using FS Commander and have the ATC use that plan for it's instructions.  Hope that makes sense.

Thanks and hope such a beast exists.

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Radar Contact does, in fact, read and use the FS flight plans. Why would you think it doesn't? I suggest you read the manual, because for FS9 RC is as good as it gets.

DJ

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Why would I think it doesn't?  Because on the few occasions I used it in conjunction with FS Commander - it didn't simple as that.

My flight plan was created using FS Commander, loaded in FS and when I started RC it was giving me courses that were very different to the loaded flight plan and, as FS Commander was controlling the flight, was constantly telling me that I was off course. Heck, even the RC forum says/implies that it wont follow the loaded flight plan by telling people to listen to RC ATC and not worry about following the fpln shown in FS.

For what it is worth, I did read the manual and followed it to the letter when I first got it.

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It sounds like you're using two programs where you only need one. Why do you need FS Commander to control your flight while using Radar Contact? Once I've saved my FSC flightplan, I close FSC. I only have Radar Contact and FSMetar running with FS2004, and Radar Contact has always worked as it should.

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24 minutes ago, wombat457 said:

Why would I think it doesn't?  Because on the few occasions I used it in conjunction with FS Commander - it didn't simple as that.

My flight plan was created using FS Commander, loaded in FS and when I started RC it was giving me courses that were very different to the loaded flight plan and, as FS Commander was controlling the flight, was constantly telling me that I was off course. Heck, even the RC forum says/implies that it wont follow the loaded flight plan by telling people to listen to RC ATC and not worry about following the fpln shown in FS.

For what it is worth, I did read the manual and followed it to the letter when I first got it.

I haven't used RC4 or FS9 in a decade; however, I'm pretty sure you have to import the plan into RC4, not just FS9.  Also, you realize that RC4 is going to vector you once you get to a certain point, regardless of your flight plan, unless you request RNVA/ILS etc.  It sounds like you don't understand real world ATC procedures and/or didn't bother to read the RC4 manual.  If you're looking for something better, it doesn't exist.  Read the manual, it's all in there....

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First up, thank you A32xx for being civil and offering an opinion, along with a suggestion, that is constructive, polite and helpful. 

As for the other replies - well, I'll treat them appropriately.

 

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16 minutes ago, wombat457 said:

First up, thank you A32xx for being civil and offering an opinion, along with a suggestion, that is constructive, polite and helpful. 

As for the other replies - well, I'll treat them appropriately.

 

You're upset because we suggested you RTM before professing a product, that's been around for 15 years, doesn't work? Your reputation appears to be well earned, sir.... 

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1 hour ago, wombat457 said:

For what it is worth, I did read the manual and followed it to the letter when I first got it.

Just exactly what part of that are you having problems comprehending?

What annoys me, are people who don't offer suggestions, like A32xx did, but merely tell you to do something you have already done.  People who make assumptions and jump to conclusions and make comment without any basis of fact also annoy me. 

As for that reputation thing, I really don't care as it seems as though anyone will give you a thumbs down if, and when, you don't agree with them.

 

 

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2 hours ago, wombat457 said:

I am looking for an ATC program for FS9 that works in-conjunction with FS Commander 9.

I have tried PFE but that is a pain in the rectum to run and doesn't always work for some reason.  I also have Radar Contact but that doesn't seem to read the FS flight plans and does what it thinks it should do.  
 

What I am looking for is a GOOD (payware or freeware) ATC program that I can import the flight plan into that I created using FS Commander and have the ATC use that plan for it's instructions.  Hope that makes sense.

Thanks and hope such a beast exists.

You say you have tried PFE. But have you tried PF3? It is most certainly not a pain in the nether regions. Is is always kept up to date. And the "after sales" service is second to none.

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50 minutes ago, vololiberista said:

You say you have tried PFE. But have you tried PF3? It is most certainly not a pain in the nether regions. Is is always kept up to date. And the "after sales" service is second to none.

Thank you and no I haven't, actually I haven't heard of PF3 but will definitely take a look at it!  Thanks for the direction.

Just for the record though, I reinstalled both FSC and RC and they now seem to be working together properly.  A short flight from KBUF to KJFK established that with an "excellent flight" report from RC to boot, and I didn't even have to read the manual again ;)

 

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4 hours ago, wombat457 said:

Thank you and no I haven't, actually I haven't heard of PF3 but will definitely take a look at it!  Thanks for the direction.

Just for the record though, I reinstalled both FSC and RC and they now seem to be working together properly.  A short flight from KBUF to KJFK established that with an "excellent flight" report from RC to boot, and I didn't even have to read the manual again ;)

 

This is the latest iteration of PF3 in operation. A short flight to Turin that doesn't quite go to plan!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WF1PVEVdQDo&t=1809s

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Thanks mate, I'll take a look at it as well.  I did look at PF3 and it does look good.  To be honest though, I am a little concerned about it being an OnCourse product, having read a large number of issues with their products with regards to installation and connectivity.

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Just looked at your vid and have to say, that is the first time I have seen a bird strike in FS, sad but amazing!  

The voices seem to be less robotic than RC and and a little clearer and that is a plus. I do like the directions to the gate, if that is a part of PF3 that is.  All in all, it does seem impressive!

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Yes, directions from/to the gate/terminal/parking spot are from PF3's included TGS (Taxi Guidance System).

If vololiberista hadn't already mentioned it, I would have recommended it, too.

(disclaimer: we are both beta testers for PF3)

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Thomas,

Thanks, appreciate the confirmation.  Don't take this the wrong way but as you said, both yourself and vololoberista are Beta testers for it so I was wondering if there was any where I could get an "independent" review of it as well.

As I said, it looks good from what it has and from the small video, but so did FDC Live and PFE Deluxe (which I have both of) and they are littered with issues.  

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I will offer you an independent view - but will probably get attacked by dedicated users for doing so.

Both of the suggested offerings have some excellent features - I have tried them both. Alas, I have also abandoned both because they are not fully integrated with Flight Simulator. There is only one that works fully with FS, for all its faults, and that is the one that comes with the game. The add-ons are overlays and run at the same time as FS's system (you have to turn the volume to zero on that).

The problems I found with the add-ons was that they did not deal with other traffic at all well and noricable features (if you can call them that) were a total lack of hand-offs for other aircraft and poor (if any) ground handling. Traffic control areas seem a bit random and I remember speaking to UK Control when in France (or perhaps vice versa). Now the TGS system in PF3 sounds grand, but it will happily take taxi you up a dead end, to an occupied gate (unless you start faffing with AFD files in advance of the flight), or to the nearest spot even if it is general aviation parking at some airports and has no regard for other traffic on the ground at all. Quite simply, because FS manages other traffic its own system knows where everything is but the add-ons have to guess from limited information fed to them by FSUIPC.

If I remember rightly with PFE you never get handed off from Departure if you are flying below 10000 feet. Few will do that with airliners, but its poor implementation for those of us who plod around in unpressurised DC-3s.

In RC, if you have not descended fast enough for hand-off to Approach for your destination you will be sent off abruptly (and rather aggressively, if I remember!) at 90 degrees to your route.

In PFE I have occasionally been routed straight across the ILS beam for my runway without a word from Traffic Control and left to head at 90 degrees to it for ever end the night.

They are both admirable efforts and the altenative voices are grand with their wide range of country accents - in PFE linked to airlines of their country. Some may wish to sacrifice some standard FS features to have such delights but I'm afraid that after much preseverence with both pieces of software I reverted to the default system with the "no-nags" modification. Couple that with the ease of airline name voice modifications with EditVoicePack and you have a good solid sysem only spoilt by worldwide US accents.

On balance I think PFE is the better of the two choices, and it will run along Flight Deck Companion from the same developer although some of the calls seem to come a bit late when you do.

I understand (I may be wrong) there is no further onward development for either product, so what doesn't work for you will not be fixed. If true, it actually surprises me the products are still being sold.

Hoping this helps.

John

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42 minutes ago, John Hinson said:

I will offer you an independent view - but will probably get attacked by dedicated users for doing so.

...

If I remember rightly with PFE you never get handed off from Departure if you are flying below 10000 feet. Few will do that with airliners, but its poor implementation for those of us who plod around in unpressurised DC-3s.

Regarding the first: Sorry if that happens. Yes, it should not.

Regarding the second (no time now for more comments): With PF3 you can configure the center altitude before the flight, so you can set it below your cruising altitude. Default is (I think) 8000ft, but I often set it to a lower value, too, because more often than not I'm flying with Cessnas not having a pressurized cabin. Yes, it would be nice if PF3 could automatically do that, I think I'll talk to the main author about this.

And for the OP: There is a demo version of PF3, so you can check for yourself if it works for you.

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PF3 is a much much more enhanced animal compared to PFE. And actually it is easier to use than PFE. There is little wrong with it. It does a reasonable job for IFR, VFR, FAA and ICAO. There are some omissions but it is an ongoing development which is more than can be said for other ATC add-ons. There is also the possibility that it may work in the future with AI controller. The developers have been in touch.  It also works with MCE.

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8 minutes ago, vololiberista said:

PF3 is a much much more enhanced animal compared to PFE.

OK, that is good news - I am obviously out of touch there as I assumed they are one and the same.

In that case my "review" is invalid as I have no experience of it . . . yet!

Best regards,

John

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Good Morning and thank you all for the input, although some of what was said is a little over my head.

In hindsight, I would have to agree with John regarding the use of add ons - they are an "overlay" as such and cannot interact with FS (or any sim) like the default element.  I would also have to admit that ALL add ons seem to have problems or lack something as well so it comes down to works for the individual.

With that being said, RC is working for me (along side FSC) with only one issue found to date, altitude or FL's when associated with QNH.  At times, such as my last flight last night, I was directed to descend to 5800 QNH 1007 and despite doing that, RC kept complaining I was at the wrong altitude, and complained some what arrogantly at that. I am also skeptical as to whether or not RC "builds the scenery file" properly as well as some of the approach headings called by RC seem off to me.

As such, I am going to download the "Trial Version" of PF3 this evening and take a look at it, paying particular attention to the way it installs and it's complexity of use.  I believe the "Trial Version" is the "Full Version" on a time limited thing so I should be able to get a good appreciation of it and be able to give a "review" of it afterwards.

Thanks for the input guys, it is appreciated and good to know a discussion can be had with everyone's opinions being considered.

wombat457

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Thomas,

Thanks mate I knew it had limitations like any trial software.  The 15 minutes (for pop ups) must have stuck in my head :(

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Okay, I have downloaded the Trial Version of PF3 and it has not been a good start.

1.   It looks identicle to PFE in look.                                                                                       2.   The setup appears to be the same as PFE with nice added options

Now the problems, at least with the DEMO version:

1.   I loaded a flight that was 198 miles and it was rejected by PF3, I then loaded another for 187 miles and it too was rejected.  I eventually got PF3 to accept a flight of 128 miles and connect to FS.

2.   The PF3 window opened and showed no options to do anything.  As such, I assumed it would automatically contact me as I sat at the gate.

3.   Within a couple of minutes the pop up appeared and I pressed the OKAY button to get rid of it.  With that, a message appeared in the PF3 window telling to clear the pop up.  As I had already cleared the popup, there was nothing I could do and, after a short time, the PF3 window (in FS) disappeared altogether despite the main PF3 remaining open and connected. 

As such, I didn't get to see what it could or would do.  Needless to say, if the DEMO (marketing item) doesn't work or is flawed then what is the full version going to be like?  Are people going to have the same or similar issues with PF3 as they had with FDC and PFE?  I don't think (at this point) I am willing to spend money to find out.   

This is most likely NOT what anyone wanted to read but honestly, I had reservations about the product due to OnCourse's previous product issues but did think that the demo would at least work so I could evaluate the program.  

 

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The Demo isn't flawed.  Some visual aspects are similar to PFE but that is all. PF3 is in effect a complete re-write. Most of the stuff that looks similar has also been re-written. If you are seeming to have problems with some of  your flpls or your setup then by all means raise them on the PF3 forum. You will be answered promptly. All of these ATC add-ons are a steep leaning curve and one does need to read the manual. Most people don't seem to have problems with the demo. So it may be some existing add-on in your system that may be conflicting.

I have read posts from some who have downloaded the new 747 from PMDG. They complain that some switches and dials don't work the way they are used to and can PMDG change them back please. It's a different aicraft with different systems. In the same way PF3 is significantly different from PFE so you need to spend time with it exploring what it can do. As said any problems report them on the PF3 forum.

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2 minutes ago, vololiberista said:

The Demo isn't flawed.  Some visual aspects are similar to PFE but that is all. If you are seeming to have problems with some of  your flpls or your setup then by all means raise them on the PF3 forum. You will be answered promptly. All of these ATC add-ons are a steep leaning curve and one does need to read the manual. Most people don't seem to have problems with the demo. So it may be some exisitng add-on in our system that may be conflicting.

As said, installing and setting PF3 up was straight forward - there wasn't an issue there.  Once it accepted a flight plan it saved it and (presumably) loaded it and then connected to FS without a problem.

The problems occurred after that as mentioned.  The FP3 ATC window (in FS not the main window) displayed but offered no options to do anything, ie 1 for Departure etc.

The main issue was the pop up window displaying and, once cancelled, essentially closing the PF3 ATC window in FS.

In short - the software installed, setup was straight forward ie loading a flight plan, and connecting to FS was good but that was as far as I could get.  If there was a conflict with other software tat is installed, but not running, then I don't think I would have gotten as far as I did.  

With that being said I will post the problem in the PF3 forums but this really is a feeling of dejavu where oncourse software is concerned sorry to say.

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