Ray Proudfoot

Best cloud package for P3D

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I'm looking to change the default clouds in P3D. When I used FSX I bought Real Environment Xtreme (REX) Essential Plus w/ OverDrive but it included many things I didn't use like a weather engine. I appreciate it also has replacement runway and water textures as well as numerous sky and cloud textures.

But it was a massive package and I don't really need something as extensive as that now. There's mention on the REX forum of a small subscription to make it work with P3D. It's a possibility depending on the subscription.

There appears to be two current offerings - Rex Soft Clouds and ASCA from Hi-Fi Technology. As both sites have a sale on ending in a couple of days I'd like to take advantage of one of these packages. I already have AS16 but would appreciate your views especially if you've tried both.

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To get the best bang for the buck go with ASCA. The combination of AS16 and ASCA will give you dynamic cloud changes on the fly rather than the old method of using the same theme. As far as visual preference, you'll get as many for REX as for ASCA. I prefer ASCA plus I get the dynamic clouds. 

 

Vic

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Thanks Vic. That makes sense especially for AS16 owners. I'm watching a video by FroogleSim on AS16/ASCA at the moment and he's always liked their products. I've had AS v5, ASN and now AS16.

Just $18 at pcaviator. :smile:

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Hi Ray,

It sounds like you may a bit of a minimalist - so this may not be what you're after...

I had the massive REX package too...

Since then - I've moved to AS16, ASCA, ENVTEX (integrates with ASCA) and PTA which provides me with the best looking skies I've ever seen... Personally - never been a fan of Hi Res cloud textures - so I'm running minimum resolutions on cloud textures - 256 or 512 ? The AS16 really was a major step up from ASN and makes IMC flights far more realistic...

Best of luck...

Regards,

Scott  

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I second the AS16/ASCA suggestion!  Using Full Dynamics mode in ASCA allows different cloud texture sets to be loaded during a flight.  I had always used REX soft clouds which are great but like Vic, the AS16/ASCA combo with dynamic changes wins IMO!

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Hi Scott / Eric,

Thanks for the recommends. Not so much a minimalist. More someone who doesn't constantly tweak. Once I have textures I like I tend to stick with them. I hadn't changed the runway,sky or water textures in ages.

But having seen the video of AS16/ASCA by FroogleSim I was quite impressed and for a paltry 13 quid I can hardly go wrong. I like the feature where it changes the textures on the fly with no user intervention. I have enough to do already flying Concorde and handling fuel management. :biggrin:

I may look at ENVTEX in slower time once everything has bedded in. I still have a fair amount of software to install but now seems a good time to buy some products with the sales on.

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Don't forget to take time to fly too Ray! :biggrin:

 

Vic

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ASCA + Rex soft clouds for me, love the combo, soft clouds look so good. I've just started to use PTA and that's a game changer, also now use ENVTEX for everything apart from clouds

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7 minutes ago, vgbaron said:

Don't forget to take time to fly too Ray! :biggrin:

 

Vic

Switching sims is a huge undertaking Vic. I've been on it for 4 days now and still not done. Another week and it will all be done. :smile:

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4 minutes ago, Nyxx said:

ASCA + Rex soft clouds for me, love the combo, soft clouds look so good. I've just started to use PTA and that's a game changer, also now use ENVTEX for everything apart from clouds

Thanks David but it was 3-1 for ASCA. :wink: ENVTEX has 2 recommends now so I will look at that in slow time.

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When I used ASCA alone imo the clouds look to harsh, hence soft clouds. Try and see what you like if there too harsh you know what to do :) 

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I like soft clouds too. 

 

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As a long time (and that is day one on most of their range) REX supporter, I now have to say I much prefer ASCA, with their revised structures and textures that match the stuff from REX and go several steps forward IMHO. You can use the ASCA structures with any other textures of course, but the ones supplied are as good as anything out there, with an amazing weather engine to boot. REX have dragged their feet too long in giving us their new, long promised, product (I would say FUD) so they have now lost me to Hi-Fi and others who seems to work hard to make great products without the BS. Skyforce, or whatever it was called will not be bought by me now.

There are some great freeware clouds (and sky's far exceeding REX) and other decent payware (ENVTEX for one) package to choose from as well.

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25 minutes ago, Bobsk8 said:

I like soft clouds too. 

 

If you blur a cloud you will get a soft cloud.

Or : take a cloud and use the lowest resolution. Better for framerates with clouds too..

Myself , I use ASCA clouds icw AS16

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For me AS16/ASCA + ENVTEX + PTA the best combination.

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AS16+ASCA+ENVTEX+PTA Ray. Couldn't get better than that. 

Cheers

hoang Le

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Thanks to all who have given their opinion. It seems everyone chooses one of the two I listed so I have a 50-50 chance of having picked the right one. :biggrin:

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2 hours ago, GSalden said:

If you blur a cloud you will get a soft cloud.

Or : take a cloud and use the lowest resolution. Better for framerates with clouds too..

Myself , I use ASCA clouds icw AS16

I was talking about  Rex soft clouds. Friend of mine got ASCA when it came out with AS 16 I didn't like the looks of it at all. 

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I have had AS16 since it was released, but was hesitant to purchase ASCA since most of the screen shots that I had seen made the clouds look like oil paintings of clouds rather than actual clouds.  I purchased ASCA yesterday since it was on sale for the Easter holiday weekend.  I now wonder why I waited!  I flew four flights yesterday in full dynamic mode, with clouds set to 1024 texture size at 32-bit resolution, and not once did I experience the oil-painted look in the clouds.  I too am a fan of softer clouds and would have used 256 or 512 texture but did not see a setting at that resolution which was 32-bit.  I have never liked clouds displayed using DXT compression, since it has been my experience that it can cause the painted look I hate.  The clouds during all of the flights were soft in appearance and well-shaded.  I have to say that I am now a big fan of ASCA.  My next step will be to test with ENVTEX in full dynamic mode to see if I like that better.  One thing to consider is that with ASCA you also get new cloud models, which are significantly better than the default models.  The upcoming REX SkyForce 3D will also have new cloud models, but I got tired of waiting for it's release and could not pass up a sale on ASCA.

In my opinion, AS16/ASCA produces the best visualization of real weather conditions so far.

Cheers,

Gerald

 

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24 minutes ago, Bobsk8 said:

I was talking about  Rex soft clouds. Friend of mine got ASCA when it came out with AS 16 I didn't like the looks of it at all. 

Just as a FYI Bob, there have been several updates to ASCA graphics since the original release and the consensus has been very good.

Vic

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Soft Clouds is no muss, no fuss and does the job here.  BTW I only us Wx Themes to reduce load.

 

bs

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Waiting upon rex skyforce 3d

 

So tempted to get ASCA thou.

 

 

 

 

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7 minutes ago, mikeymike said:

Waiting upon rex skyforce 3d

 

So tempted to get ASCA thou.

 

 

 

 

+1.

Been waiting forever now for this. I keep refreshing their status update pages in the hope of some news. This product will easily surpass everything else on the market. I wish they would let out an early beta release! :biggrin:

I will say though, as a temporary solution, ASCA is worth the price!

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hde v2 clouds, add mipmaps to them as some are unmipped, keep them 32 bit

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I had AsNext and Rex Texture Direct/soft clouds and liked my sim look. Then after the Queen release I upgraded to As16 and Asca. Could not be happier. The best is I can set smaller resolutions clouds and still get full overcast coverage with little fps and vas hit.

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