simbol

Prepar3D V4 AI traffic Lights problem

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Hello,

Has anyone overcome the issue with the AI Navigation, Landing and strobe lights on Prepar3D?  mines are awful, AI airplanes looks like they have ball of fire on each wing from distance and no strobe light visible from distance, this is totally unrealistic.

I have spend a considerable amount of time trying to overcome the problem but I have failed, so far I tried:

1) Use Shockware lights as I did for FSX-SE, this failed since the effects don't work anymore since P3D V3.

2) I tried to assign the .fx effects lights used by PMDG and Carenado, both failed as the strobe lights don't work and the navigation lights are invisible from the distance. Landing lights remained as ball of fire from distance as well.

3) Replace the halo.bmp with different versions, this made no difference to the AI lights.

Does anyone knows any solution? or has more ideas? I can't believe LM hasn't addressed this problem so far for god sake, all that fuss about dynamic lighting, dynamic reflections, new lighting system and the AI lights looks HORRIBLE.

Regards,
Simbol

 

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Agreed - and even worse with MyTraffic as the aircraft lights are near invisible. 

Really wish there was an fx strobe addon that is compatible with V4. Still miss the night sky in FSX with WoAI strobing away with the Shockwave addons... 

 

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So nobody has or know a solution? 

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Update,

I have followed the steps from iceman2 who posted a solution for PD3 V3 here:

I performed some some alterations to his fix and as a result I have reduced considerable the "ball of fire" effect for the Red, Green lights and landing lights. However:

A) Strobe lights only display when you are up to 2 NM, as I understand it this is by design by LM.

B) Bacon light still looks too large at distance, funny enough you cannot see the strobe lights but the bacon light can be seen from 10NM, I guess the only good news is that at least you can see AI traffic from some sort of distance.

Requirements for this tweak:

1) You need to own Shockwave lights, this is because the edited FX files are using textures from A2A.

2) Replace your default Halo.bmp with the ones from Shockwave lights, this improves the strobe effect for AI.

3) Replace your default FX files with the modified files -I suggest you do a backup of these before-.

Result -EHAM At night-:

I anyone is interested on trying this fix please send me a PM and I will send you the modified .FX files, also if anybody can find a way to reduce the size of the bacon light at distance and force PD3V4 to show the strobe lights from at least 10nm it would improve the situation much more.

Regards,

Simbol

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**Update**

Folks, I found a solution to the strobe lights not displaying at longer distances for Prepar3D V4, I am currently testing it before making the fix available to general public.

AI lights fix Ver 2.0:

  • AI Strobes Lights now works with PD3V4 default textures, no need for extra libraries.
  • AI Strobes can be seen as far as 20NM improving considerable the night environment.
  • AI White Navigation Lights are now using a different PD3V4 light texture to improve its quality, this removes distortion at distance and the "Ball of Fire effect".
  • Green and Red Navigation Lights are now using a different PD3V4 light texture to improve its quality removing the distortion at distance, they will also show corresponding light reflection while on the ground when AI is taxing on the tarmac. *Note: These lights still use shockwave textures*
  • The fix will work with any AI on your system.

Recommended Settings:

  • Turn your special effects settings to maximum, this instruct Prepard 3D to display .FX files with more details and distance.

Release Notes:

  • I strongly recommend to everybody to make a backup of their effects folder, this way you can remove the fix or repair your PD3 if something goes wrong.
  • The fix is designed to allow end users to see strobe and navigation lights at distance and some users might experience dimmed lights effects at close range. This is due to limitations of the effect engine and I am working on improvements for this, see version 3 notes. 
  • I am a software engineer but I am not a FSX / PD3 developer, however my career background helped me to discovered patters with the PD3V4 lighting system that allowed me to implement these fixes.
  • The fix might not bet perfect for everyone, but hey these lights look and work much better than the default lights provided by LM and they are the PD3 professionals!.
  • Although I will try to help you if you run into any trouble please understand that there is no financial gain for me from this fix, it will be released for free to the sim community so please understand if I don't answer to your questions withing 5 minutes.
  • As far as I can tell I haven't notice any FPS impact on my system, however this might be different on yours.

AI lights fix Ver 3.0 ***IN PROGRESS:

  • AI Strobes Lights: Adding reflections effects to so the lights illuminate the tarmac and airplane when they flash.
  • AI Strobes Lights: Testing different textures to see if I can improve these lights further, alternatively I might create new textures for this purpose.
  • Green and Red Navigation Lights: Developing own set of lights textures to remove any Shockwave lights requirements.
  • Waiting feedback on people with 4K screens, depending on results I might design two set of lights, one for people with low resolution screens and another for people using 4K screens.

I sent version 2.0 already to a couple of users so they can test it as well, please note my screen resolution is 1680 x 1050 an although the traffics lights looks perfect for my environment I am interested to know how the adjustment works on high resolution screens since I don't have access to 4K (Unless you want to donate money for this purpose :laugh:).

If you want to participate with the tests please send me a PM with your email address so I can email you the updated .FX lights.

Kind Regards,

Simbol

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Hi Simbol,

thanks for your efforts and expertise. I think this fix will be well received by P3Dv4 uses. I tweaked my effects for V4 and improved them somewhat but still have distance issues so I'm very interested to see what you have done and look forward to trying your work when released.

ICE

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1 hour ago, Iceman2 said:

Hi Simbol,

thanks for your efforts and expertise. I think this fix will be well received by P3Dv4 uses. I tweaked my effects for V4 and improved them somewhat but still have distance issues so I'm very interested to see what you have done and look forward to trying your work when released.

ICE

Iceman,

Many thanks for your encourage words.

Regards,
Simbol

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**Update**

I decided to call this fix AI Lights Reborn, early version 3.0 is now ready

Version 3.0 Beta 1 Change Log:

  • AI Strobes Lights: Reflections effects are now in place, this has improved the quality of strobe lights at close range, these lights now illuminate the tarmac and airplane when they flash, they will also react to dynamic lighting configuration of your Simulator.
  • Green and Red Navigation Lights: Removed all Shockwave lights textures requirements.
  • Green and Red Navigation Lights: Improved lights reflections, as a result the lights are now more realistic.

Version 3.0 Pending / In progress:

  • AI Strobes Lights: Developing a set of new textures to improve these lights further.
  • Green and Red Navigation Lights:  Developing new textures to improve these lights further.
  • White Navigation Lights: Developing new textures to improve these lights further.
  • Waiting feedback on people with 4K screens: depending on results I might design two set of lights, one for people with low resolution screens and another for people using 4K screens.
  • Installation: Creation of an installation file to help end users to install the AI lights.

Regards,
Simbol

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2 hours ago, Iceman2 said:

thanks for your efforts and expertise. I think this fix will be well received by P3Dv4 uses.

+1

Thanks for taking your time to create a fix to the AI lighting problem irritation. I too find the lights unrealistic and am looking forward to trying your AI Lights Reborn v3.0

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8 hours ago, F737NG said:

 

+1

Thanks for taking your time to create a fix to the AI lighting problem irritation. I too find the lights unrealistic and am looking forward to trying your AI Lights Reborn v3.0

F737NG,

Thanks for your words they are very much appreciated.

Regards,
Simbol

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Hello guys,

First I would like to express my gratitude to all the members of the Beta team, AVSIM staff and AVSIM community for their support for this project.

**Update**

The AI Lights Reborn project Beta team has reached 9 people, the initial feedback from the team has been very positive and so far it seems that everything works perfect on 4K screens / resolutions so it appears I would not need to create multiple versions of the textures. 

The final release should be ready in less than two weeks, mostly because I want the installation process to be smooth and easy for end users, I will keep you all updated.

Regards,
Simbol

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Wow, Simbol, thank you so much for doing this, I have been waiting for an imrpoved AI light fix as well for the longest time and miss the shockwave lights back in FSX. I would love to beta test your mod out as I am running P3D v4 at 4K as well. I am looking for a more realistic AI light approach for my planes... like you said, sometimes it's difficult to spot AI planes in the night sky, or the lights look out of proportion, etc.

For your light mod, do we need to set the special effects slider to max in order to get the most out of this mod?

Would love to see some screenshots or video of this in action, this sounds very promising!

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16 minutes ago, captain420 said:

Wow, Simbol, thank you so much for doing this, I have been waiting for an imrpoved AI light fix as well for the longest time and miss the shockwave lights back in FSX. I would love to beta test your mod out as I am running P3D v4 at 4K as well. I am looking for a more realistic AI light approach for my planes... like you said, sometimes it's difficult to spot AI planes in the night sky, or the lights look out of proportion, etc.

For your light mod, do we need to set the special effects slider to max in order to get the most out of this mod?

Would love to see some screenshots or video of this in action, this sounds very promising!

Hi Aaron,

As I understand from the current PD3 SDK documentation (latest version is 4.0.28.21686 -which of course I am using-)  all Special effects are rendered in accordance with these settings, this is why I am recommending to move the slider to the maximum to improve the quality of the AI lights.

Personally I haven't seen any performance issue with the settings set at maximum (My FPS remained the same), but my PC is overclocked and using water cooling, however now that you are part of the Beta team by all means play with the settings and report back via email your results with different slider bar configurations, that is the point of beta testing.

We should also Bear in mind that the final release version might be relatively unaffected by the special effects slider due to the new textures that I am developing, but of course that is yet to be seen, I will let you and the rest of the guys to play with these before we can reach any conclusions.

Kind Regards,
Simbol

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1 hour ago, d.tsakiris said:

This is great, really looking forward to it being released!

Many thanks for your feedback and interest, please be patient it shouldn't take that long.

As an additional information to everyone, I continue to improve the lights every night, my only spare time to work on this project is from 9pm to 1am (I have a full time Job from 8am to 6pm, a wife and a two year old daughter) so some nights I do great progress others not so much, I have also contacted Lockheed Martin to confirm that they are happy for me to release this new "Free" add on.

In the meantime the Beta team continues to report great results and excitement, I should be sending them another version next Monday and assuming that no problems get reported we should start testing the installation program prototype in order to confirm that everything goes smooth and nice (as I want) for everybody in the community, after this is done the last step would be to contact AVSIM staff so they can try the tool and give me the final approval to release the AI Lights Reborn Free Edition to the community.

My biggest hope is that I can provide to everyone a WAO factor and a level of excitement when they apply this new add on to their simulator, so far the feedback received from the beta team indicates that this should be the case :wink:.

Speak to you soon.

Kind Regards,
Simbol

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** Update **

AI Lights Reborn Free Edition Release Candidate is ready.

Version 3.2 Change log:

  • AI Strobes Lights: Lights reflections improved with new textures and effects.

  • AI Green and Red Navigation Lights:  Lights improved  with new textures and effects.

  • AI White Navigation Lights: New textures applied, effects were re-adjusted to avoid any orbs at distance.

  • AI Beacon Lights:  Lights improved with new textures.

  • AI Beacon Lights: As suggested by members of the beta team that are RW pilots, the lights effects are now adjusted so the lights are not visible until short final. 

  • AI Beacon Lights: As suggested by members of the beta team that are RW pilots, the bottom beacon light makes reflections against the tarmac and the lower part of the airplane. Please note this effect is very subtle in order to keep the simulation experience as immersive as possible.

  • 4K and 2K Monitors: Lights and effects were confirmed by the Beta team that are working without any problems on 4K and 2K screens.

  • AI Lights overall: All the AI Lights were adjusted to react accordingly to daylight time, for example during the day strobe lights are less reflective than at night .


Pending / In Progress

  • Installation program: Under tests.
  • Confirmation from Beta Team that the RC is fine and the installation file works as expected.

The RC should be send to the beta team after I finish the installation program tests, after the beta confirms that everything works as expected, the RC will be send to Avsim staff for final approval.

Lockheed Martin have now replied to my letters stating that as long as I followed their User Eula, Developer Eula and developing guidelines there a not problems to release this or any other utilities developed in the future, on this regard the AI Lights Reborn Free Edition will be installed & implement as instructed by Lockheed Martin SDK Developing guidelines.

Speak to you soon

Kind Regards,
Simbol

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** Update **

AI Lights Reborn Free Edition Release Candidate is now with the Beta Team, they will be testing the installation file and the latest version 3.2 of the AI lights.

Everything rest now on the hands of the beta testing team, if everyone is happy with the results you should have the release version very shortly.

Speak to you soon

Kind Regards,
Simbol

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Just one maybe stupid question: I own REX TD for P3Dv4 and if I am not completely mistaken, it includes a new halo.bmp in a classic texture set. Will this interfere with your AI Lights Reborn Free Edition Release Candidate? Do I have to take care that when using REX TD, none of the lights are changed? Same question goes for the FTX Global street lights, I think they also modify some basic light textures which are used globally...

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34 minutes ago, AnkH said:

Just one maybe stupid question: I own REX TD for P3Dv4 and if I am not completely mistaken, it includes a new halo.bmp in a classic texture set. Will this interfere with your AI Lights Reborn Free Edition Release Candidate? Do I have to take care that when using REX TD, none of the lights are changed? Same question goes for the FTX Global street lights, I think they also modify some basic light textures which are used globally...

Hi AnkH,

Many thanks for your question, in terms of AI Lights the Halo.bmp is used internally by PD3/ FSX to override the AI Landing lights automatically. This freeware is not touching any landing lights or effects configured for AI traffic and therefore it would not interfere with your current configuration.

This add-on was designed to avoid any conflict with the most well known 3rd party add-on and utilities, so the freeware will also install its own set of textures that will be used accordingly for the Navigation, Beacon and Strobe Lights.

Conclusion

You can use REX TD without any problems since the AI Lights Reborn Free Edition do not use Halo.bmp textures in anyway.

Once again many thanks for your interest and support.

Regards,
Simbol

 

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Simbol, I haven't received my latest update yet. Could you please send it to me. Thanks.

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Hi Simbol,

nod bad, from starting this topic to offering a solution within 2 weeks - my compliments!  

I found this here due to a search for a solution regarding the awful lights in P3d v4 for myself. So, I highly appreciate what are you doing und looking forward what will come :happy:

Thx in advance once again and thumbs up!

Kind regards

Michael

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6 hours ago, captain420 said:

Simbol, I haven't received my latest update yet. Could you please send it to me. Thanks.

Apologies, it seems your email address blocked it, I send you an alternative way to retrieve the update via your private email address.

Regards,
Simbol

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5 minutes ago, miwe said:

Hi Simbol,

nod bad, from starting this topic to offering a solution within 2 weeks - my compliments!  

I found this here due to a search for a solution regarding the awful lights in P3d v4 for myself. So, I highly appreciate what are you doing und looking forward what will come :happy:

Thx in advance once again and thumbs up!

Kind regards

Michael

Michael,

Many thanks for your kind worlds and support, I am sure you will love this freeware add-on.

We are very close to release it, I want to release it this week so stay in tune.

Regards,
Simbol

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It's this kind of dedication to our hobby that makes the whole thing great.  It's a seemingly small change in the grand scheme of things, but actually, it's visually quite significant and adds yet more depth to overall immersion.

Thanks for you efforts.

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29 minutes ago, ErichB said:

It's this kind of dedication to our hobby that makes the whole thing great.  It's a seemingly small change in the grand scheme of things, but actually, it's visually quite significant and adds yet more depth to overall immersion.

Thanks for you efforts.

Hi Erich,

Many thanks for your kind words.

Many simulator users (including me) have dreams of becoming real world pilots flying for an airline, private Jets or small GA planes around local airports, small details like these is what make us in a way fulfill that deep dream we have (at least for a couple of hours), personally I am very passionate about and flying that I cannot go on without flying at least once a week (My wife keeps asking why you don't get a real plane? I keep saying to her only if I could honey!!, but don't we need to keep paying the mortgage no?) , the lack of details currently present in many flight simulators products and their third party add-on's is staggering.

Not many developers out there understand the passion for our hobby, this is not just a hobby, we are living a "Dream" when we fly and this is what they need to understand before starting to develop any tool for any flying simulator, this is not a game, it is a simulation...

I have a couple of others projects already on my queue for the very near future, it seems I will need to develop a couple of add-on's myself, I am tired of waiting for over 10 years for someone to give me what that I need to make my dreams (and yours) come true..

Stay tune, I will let you know my plans after the AI Traffic Reborn free edition is available to general public.

Regards,
Simbol

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