David Roch

So, is BlackMarble worth it with P3Dv4?

Recommended Posts

The answer is clearly YES.
I am not used to write reviews in English and this is not my aim.
But after a first negative try, I decided to reinstall BM and test it again and I am so impressed by this addon now than I wish to share my excitement.

I am used to FS and I have very much appreciated UTX night lighting a decade ago, as well as Orbx lights, later.
BM is way much powerful and renders night lighting like nothing seen before.
This is real world navigation and complete road network. You can almost use BM for real world navigation training. Not repetitive cartoon textures but reality!
And it is amazing to see the night environment from the cockpit, sincerely amazing. Road textures are bright, sparkling from far distance, so beautiful!

Does it work well with Orbx products?
One has to tweak settings a bit if he wants to get the best from the addon but it also works as it is, with less lights.
If the developer finds a way to make BM works with Orbx series without tweaks it will be perfect.
If not, one can easily switch from one to the other without hassle.
The single remaining issue is the lights pattern (oval P3D default wheat seed looking textures) when flying low but it seems like this one can be fixed.

From the cockpit, with P3D v4 lighting engine: a whole new flying experience for night flying:
2017-814.jpg

2017-815.jpg

2017-813.jpg

2017-816.jpg

2017-812.jpg


This is PMDG 747 on a short domestic flight in Greece, with Orbx Vector + OLC + BlackMarble Base + Vector.
Simply gorgeous!
 

So BM is indeed a fantastic tool which still needs some tweaking to work smoothly with Orbx but which has a great potential and provides already a real addition to our flying pleasure, without any significant impact on fps.

You like night flying?
This one is for you!

(I didn't try it on FSX or P3D <v4 though)


 

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Help AVSIM continue to serve you!
Please donate today!

Hi David

As of  now, what Orbx Tweek do I need to do to make BM/Vector work properly?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Manny,

Because there is still an issue with Orbx Regions (Orbx and Chris Bell are working on it) , I suggest NOT flying in NA fat regions.
For me the basis is the following:

- Do not make any change in FTX Central (don't touch at Vector roads nor at OLC roads)
- Do not use the "remove 3rd party" option in BM.

You'll get this, which is already more detailed and acurate than Orbx alone:
010.jpg

 

Now, don't move from the simulator and untick ORBX\FTX_VECTOR\FTX_VECTOR_EXX in the Scenery Library.
You will get that, which is BM in all its glory!
113.jpg

 

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Seems quite good however problem with ORBX really needs to be solved. As far as I get from their forums, roads in day time is quite a problem when used with FTX Vector.

Plus pricing is a bid too much may be? (39.99 USD for Base (lights pack basically) + 59.99 for Vector and additional cost if you want "support")  

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

During day time I just check back the Orbx entry within the sim to avoid the roads issue.
The problem is when you fly between both day/night but it is not a big deal, really.

Yes, IMO, support fees are a non sense, the dev has to provide support for free.
Regarding pricing, I believe 89$ to get the whole package once Traffic and Bridge additions will be released could be much attractive than the present price.
But to be honest there is a lot of work behind this addon, not a simple textures addition (actually there is ZERO textures, just solid rendering engine and vector database), so yes it is pricey but it deserves a high price.

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So I take it the subscription is to "pay" for support? It would be nice to get an answer to the question that has been asked many times already.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 minutes ago, Jazzfan said:

So I take it the subscription is to "pay" for support? It would be nice to get an answer to the question that has been asked many times already.

Ain't that the truth!! Since when does a developer of flight sim products charge for supporting their product? The cost of added support supposed to be already in the cost of the product.

Maybe the subscription is so you can get updates? On the other hand, that wouldn't be too good either.

Paying for updates is usually only when a product crosses the line into a completely new version, like X-Plane 10 to X-Plane 11, or FSX to P3Dv4.

I surely wouldn't buy this if I had to pay for regular support.

 

Bob

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, FSXtreme said:

I surely wouldn't buy this if I had to pay for regular support.

I agree. The price is too rich for my sim tastes. Hopefully, maybe, Orbx will "improve" their night-lighting now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shots look nice.

For me, I have become exhausted with tweaking sims...and for P3D4 I haven't made one.  And don't intend to. I just don't want to be having to remember to switch between this and that...its old school.

Not be a big night flying anyway, but do enjoy short hops...this is not for me especially due to pricing.

I'm suspecting this is more for those that fly the heavy's for night long hours flights etc.

Its a nice product though and the developer by teaming up with Orbx has now (which he should have done in the first place) will not doubt improve the product.

What is needed is a configure module of some sort, I'm thinking.

Bryan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I for one love the sunset atmosphere in the sim.
Better than full black nights.
And BM is splendid at dusk :-)

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
56 minutes ago, David Roch said:

Bob,

No need to purchase this support option, you just untick the check box.

David, does that mean that I don't get any support for the product?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't know, it looks like obvious that the developer is already providing support for free on his forum but I can't talk on his name. 

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, David Roch said:

I don't know, it looks like obvious that the developer is already providing support for free on his forum but I can't talk on his name. 

we do provide support and updates in the first 3months at not extra charge,
the additional charge is for a two yea live updates and support services;
we expend more about that on our FAQ on our forums,

https://forums.chrisbelldesigns.com/topic/326-all-about-our-new-shop-and-our-future-plans/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nearly $100 for the base and vector, without paying for support. Way too expensive and I've already invested in this product line and company from its Night Environment days. No support for v4 offered there or any kind of loyalty discount to previous customers and all that investment is now pretty much down the drain just because I decided to enhance and move to a more stable platform while the developer decided to stick on a fresh new price tag for making that decision. Of course, you're free to charge what you want but I, personally, will not be supporting this product or the developer any more as I'd like to think that an upfront cost includes support, updates and enhancements to the product (I can't think of any other developer that doesn't provide us with this luxury) while its within a particular simulators life cycle without being asked to shell out even more so I can have the most up to date and stable version of the product. 

I think the technology Chris & his team have achieved is going to pave the way in the future for night lighting in our sims so anyone that hasn't experienced what his previous venture (Night Environment X) had to offer should definitely support him with this new line of product.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Karan you are mixing things up here again, i've explained to you already it is not us! you are Aerosoft customer!!!
they are the ones who should be offering loyalty update pricing; we allowed this for them!
THEY REFUSED IT!!!

so please take that issue up with who you should be taking it up with!
i can tell you its not our new publishing company - Creative Design Studios!

you should look at it this way...
Chris Bell is now Publishing his new and up to date work through a new company called - Creative Design Studios,
from here you should be able to drive the right conclusions forward,

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Chris Bell said:

we do provide support and updates in the first 3months at not extra charge,
the additional charge is for a two yea(rs of) live updates and support services;
we expend (explain) more about that on our FAQ on our forums,

https://forums.chrisbelldesigns.com/topic/326-all-about-our-new-shop-and-our-future-plans/

Ouch!...so if I don't buy the "Support" option, after three months, I will get neither updates or support for my purchase.

I must admit, I am drawn to this product, but this part of it doesn't seem very attractive or customer friendly.

Also Chris, I don't think the customer should have to do research by searching through FAQs and forums, in order to find out basic purchasing information like this.  It should be full disclosure on the product page.

Thank you,

Bob

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

we are just trying to be nice by allowing you to save additional $1.99!
sometime it makes a difference to people; we could have included this in the main price and publish 1 year support included price just the same!

either way we will deliver you a working product to your satisfactory within those 3 free months,
you can ask around; we work hard for our customers,

now that you have an account with us; keep an eye and you will see how different we are in our approach, 
its a new format with emphasis on supporting rather then profiting goal (which is still important for a business!),
i challenge you to do a price comparison with 2 year support included!
and don't forget NO TAX! and we sale in US $, not EUR!

and we still come out with an attractive and competitive pricing after all that!

bottom line support buy's you a peace of mind and makes us 100% committed to you in that time frame!
this is important in a world where LM pushes out updates every month now!!!
do you have anyone offering this sort of commitment in our industry today?

they include a support fee in the price today and hope for the best! not the case here!
you are dealing direct with developer and publisher! there will be no BS when you paid for it!

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, Chris Bell said:

we do provide support and updates in the first 3months at not extra charge,
 

Just turned me OFF

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now