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Suggestion for a good entry-level B737?

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I have been simming for 25 years now with all flavors of MSFS/P3D sims, thus I consider myself somewhat experienced. However, I nearly exclusively have been using GA so far.

I would like to make a detour with big iron and thought a B737 might be a good start. Neither do I have time to study several 100 pages of Boeing manuals nor flip levers and switches for half an hour in the 1 or 2 hours left after work. Thus, I am looking for a version being easy to handle but sporting a realistic flight model, if something like this exists. Given my specifications, I think the PMDG version anyone is raving about being not proper.

My setup is a bit special (hardware panel with Saitek gear, I also have a spare throttle quadrant available), and it would be great to find something fitting:

flight_simulation_small.jpg

There are (clock-style) B737 gauges available from https://fsxtimes.wordpress.com/. The plane should be (or soon become) Prepar3d4-compatible.

Anyone prepar3d for a suggestion?

Thanks a lot for any hint, Michael

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Hi Michael,

If you want to fly a 737, imo there is only one you should get the PMDG NG. 

You say you don't want to spent 30 mins setting up, OK, you can set the default startup state to ready for take off. 

But....

It's a 737, you could just push the throttle to full and go for a spin, but that's really not the thing to do. Your a simmer so you will need to program the FMC. 5-10 mins on how much you want to enter.

It's a 737 not a 172.

If you want a simple 737 with no FMC, fly VOR to VOR, then milviz 737 is fine but not for v4, captain sim has one but no idea how that is.

I for the first 2 years simming only did GA, but frankly I feel they is nothing to them, so simple, I felt I had little to no reward flying them. Taking control of an NG I find hugely rewarding. To get everything right is the thing I love. Hand flying the PMDG NG is something special. 

You sound like you want to push on from GA's. It's a big leap but a very rewarding one.

Can I say, you don't want to spent 30 mins setting a NG up. Well it's normally 20ish. But that itself is very rewarding. To know that cockpit and FMC and feel totally in control of that before you even takeoff to me is 100x more rewarding than doing a circuit in a 172.

I follow a PDF for the NG and Ryanair.(I make my own) If anyone followed it you would be fine but it does not include how to set up the FMC but will get you from A-B with all the steps. If you wish to have a copy just PM me with your email.

One last thing. I only do short flights. Around 45mins-1 hour flight times, but set up and taxi on top of that. So around 1.30 -2 total 

 

 

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Do you own a copy of FSX?  I have the default 737 installed and, while it is indeed basic compared to the suggestions above, it works well in P3Dv4 and could get you started in bigger aircraft.  I don't think (although I could be mistaken) that there are any legal issues with using FSX aircraft in P3D as long as both programs are properly licensed.

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The PMDG will be fine for you. Once you do a tutorial flight or two you'll find getting it up and running isn't too complex and it becomes quicker over time. I wouldn't waste your time with a lesser model.

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There's only one way to transition and that's the proper way. PMDG all the way.  Have fun

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There is no real need to spend ages programming their flight management computers, the tutorials which come with sim 737 aircraft will explain it all, and then it quickly becomes second nature, although what will make it a much more enjoyable experience and certainly recommended by me and I know many others here on Avsim, is this Boeing sim manual, which is an easy and entertaining read:

http://www.utem.com/shop/index.php?l=product_detail&p=20

With the 737, it's likely to be the bleed air system and the APU/ground connections and electrical bus switches which will be the part which requires some getting used to rather than putting a flight plan into the CDU which is not really that complex, but again, the above book is recommended for all that and will make it a painless and easy learning curve.

At present, for P3D V4, since there is no decent B737-100/200/300/400/500 variant available, the iFly or PMDG 737 NGs are the ones you want: The iFly being cheaper and offering a wider range of variants (600/700/800/900 plus the BBJ variants and the extended range models), the PMDG being more expensive with less variants (just a couple, with more available in a payware expansion), but in its favour, the PMDG 737 has more faithfully detailed systems and such and so is better at simulating failures and abnormal procedures and such. It's a bit 'swings and roundabouts' with them to be honest, the iFly and the PMDG 737 NGs both have merit in differing areas.

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I would suggest that you buy the PMDG 737NGX for P3Dv4, then get Cpt. Mike Rays book on flying the 700 Boeings.

http://www.utem.com/shop/index.php?l=product_detail&p=20

Mike Rays books are very entertaining, but also very informative. They will make learning to fly the 737 a real pleasure and in a short time, it will become second nature.

You can also use them as a quick reference keeping them next to you.

You won't be satisfied flying a dumbed down version of a 737. 

With Cpt. Mike Ray's guidance, you can very easily learn to take the PMDG 737NGX on any flightplan, and then keep expanding on what you have learned.

The link is for the download version (.pdf), but I have purchased all of his hardcover books, and they have taught me to fly both Boeing and Airbus. They make learning them as entertaining as flying them.

Bob

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I echo the comments of FSXtreme as to Mike Ray's books. Also, I'd consider seriously getting the PMDG 737.  You can start off pretty simple and over time as your knowledge grows get pretty complex if you choose to. You'd get years of learning, use and enjoyment out of these two purchases.

Dave

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Thank you all for the well-thought suggestions which I'll certainly keep.

It's not unexpected the PMDG seems to be favored most, and probably I'll go that route. It has the additional advantages there seem to be millions :happy: of users out, so there's a high probability you'll get help .. just in case.

Kind regards, Michael

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You can fly the 737 VOR to VOR and do visual approaches, it has the same instruments. But you will soon want to learn more about that beauty and you will be stuck with a not so complete simulation. I wasted money in other 737's before deciding to invest in the PMDG 737NG.

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My group used to take GA pilots up in airliners in Shared Cockpit, teach the the air, fuel, electrical and IFR flight planning for FMS/RVSM capable aircraft, flight management systems, all in about 3 two hour flights (plus we did it on VATSIM).  We were really good at it as well.  Sadly, we're so busy with testing flight sim products that we have little time for anything else except to enjoy a shared cockpit flight with one another every so often. 

But reading your post really makes me wish that wasn't the case, as I love nothing more than to share my knowledge and love of flight sim with someone else.

I can send you a custom start up state for the NGX that leaves you only to push back, start up the engines, taxi/takeoff checklists and go. 

Also, it's pretty darned dated, but the Wilco 737 Pilot in Command (737-300/400/500) was a really terrific entry level airliner for FSX.

 

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2 minutes ago, DaveCT2003 said:

but the Wilco 737 Pilot in Command (737-300/400/500)

My thoughts too, Dave.

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1 minute ago, vc10man said:

My thoughts too, Dave.

I know, right?  I loved that aircraft!

 

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On more question: If I go for PMDG, I could buy from Aerosoft or directly from PMDG. Does the PMDG shop have a limited number of downloads, as, e.g. the A2A shop has (which I really would like to avoid).

Thanks and kind regards, Michael

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