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ssair1

New to Prepar3d: Recommendations!

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I've just delved into the world of Prepar3d V4, so forgive me for the beginner questions :) First off, I'm using a 34-inch ultra-wide Acer predator monitor, should I set my default views for widescreen on the settings menu or untick the box? Second question: how can I save my custom views to automatically come up the next time I open up Prepar3d? And the third question, I did purchase Orbx Vector, Global base, Open LC North American, HD Trees, isn't there another company that competes with them perhaps? Or any recommendations as to what must have scenery enhancements to buy next? As a regular X-Plane 11 user, I appreciate "photo real" scenery. And finally, what is the best airliner to purchase and the best GA aircraft? Responses will be greatly appreciated. 

Cheers! 

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I think you'll find very diverse answers in this forum, but in my opinion:

1. I wouldn't know since I don't use an ultra-wide monitor. Will leave that one for those who do.

2. There's an addon called Chaseplane which is he ultimate sensation in cameras and views for FSX and P3D. I recommend it 100%. You can create any kind of view, and then navigating through your presets is a piece of cake. Otherwise, without an addon, I wouldn't know how to save a custom view with the default system as it's very limited for my taste.

3. There's some photoreal scenery that you can purchase but I wouldn't know which.  There's also free global texture pack by user Leclercq A.  A search will help you there. I haven't used it because I use ORBX, but those who have seem to like it

4. Again, the question is very broad. In my opinion, you can't go wrong with PMDG 737, 747 or 777 for airliners (FS Labs A320 seems to be in the same league, I haven't tried it). As for GA, my favorites come from A2A. I personally fly the Cesnna C182T Skylane, but there's a big selection. 

Cheers.

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Dunno about the specific monitor, I'd say try both options and see which works.

There are plenty of custom view application add-ons for P3D. You can actually do it manually yourself with the camera config file (with some effort) but you'll probably prefer to use one of the many add-ons. You've got quite a few options, personally I like Lorby SI's Camera Position X, which is inexpensive and works well.

Scenery-wise you've got loads of choices, for example, you've got Turbulent Design's TerraFlora Trees, Ultimate Terrain, GEX, and so on. Phototerrain choices will depend where you are and what you prefer. There's really too many to list, so what I would recommend you do is go to Simmarket and have a look there. You don't necessarily have to actually buy from Simmarket, there are plenty of other places to buy, but Simmarket is well organised for browsing stuff if you want to see what is around. Although if you want a European photoreal recommendation, VFR France's Isle de France add-on is well worth checking out, it's a massive amount of bang for your bucks, gives you about 5,000 square miles of phototerrain with custom made Autogen scenery sat on top of it, including Paris in its entirety and souped up airports all across that area too including all the major ones which serve the French captial.

Best airliner? Depends on your criteria, best could be best running in the sim, best value, best in terms of realism, best looks, or all of these things. So, here's a few which hit some or all of those criteria, by no means a comprehensive list, but some worth investigating...

Comprehensively good across the entire range of products is Precision Manuals Design Group. PMDG's aircraft add-ons are all great, in particular, their Boeing 747-400 is worthy of note because not only is it a very good simulation of the aircraft overall, it's also pretty good value when you consider how many variants you actually get in the package, and how many different engine fitments are also accurately simulated. Their 737 NG is also very accurate as a simulation too. A bit more off the wall is their vintage Douglas DC-6 simulation, which is somewhat unusual among PMDG's add-ons in that it includes a virtual flight engineer if you wish to use that, since the real thing does of course require quite a few crew members. You might be familiar with that from XPlane, since it is also PMDG's lone foray into that sim platform.

Competing with PMDG's 747-400 and 737 NG are the ones from iFly. These are considerably cheaper than PMDG's add-ons, but still very good simulations of the real thing. They are perhaps not quite as pretty as the PMDG ones but they match them in most other respects and in fact actually outdo them in one or two areas, not least of which is value since the iFly 737 NG includes all variants of the NG including all the BBJ variants too, whereas the PMDG version only includes two variants and an additional pair available as another payware add-on, so the iFly NG is a lot of bang for your bucks.

Across the pond from Boeing is of course EADS, makers of the Airbus, and this is most realistically represented by the Flight Sim Labs Airbus A320. Like PMDG add-ons, it's a bit pricey, but you certainly do get what you pay for as it has a very good claim to being the most complicated and faithful rendition of an airliner for any flight sim, not merely FSX or P3D. FSL went to obsessive levels of detail with it, and it shows. But, some of that stuff is really only going to be of interest to people who like all the full on realistic detail of things to be so accurate because they are intimately familiar with the real aeroplane. Many people might not even notice the difference with some of the other Airbus models available which are cheaper and reasonably okay, such as those from Black Box Simulations and Aerosoft, which might not be so obsessively detailed or realistic, but at least have the virtue of being considerably cheaper. So in the end if you want the most realistic airliner for P3D, it probably is the FSL A320, but make sure that really is what you want, because it's a lot of money for one aeroplane (well technically two since it simulates both engine variants, i.e. CFM 56 and IAE V2500).

Turboprop-wise you can't go wrong with the Majestic Bombardier Dash Eight Q400, which does conceivably have a claim to being one of, if not the best airliner for P3D if one doesn't agree it is that FSL A320. Note there are two versions available of this aeroplane, one is the Pilot Edition, the other is the Pro Edition, the Pro version is ten quid more but for that extra it ups the realism quite a bit, adding a customisable failure system, head-up guidance system, shared cockpit functionality, autopilot TCS mode etc. Interestingly, the Majestic Q400 is one of the few P3D airliners which does actually simulate all the circuit breakers properly, which is fairly unusual for airliner simulations since most of the time pilots leave that stuff well alone hence many simulations don't bother to model it, however, if you feel like messing with that stuff, the Majestic Q400 will let you do so. The reason I think this is possibly a contender for the title of best, is that it is very faithful to the real aeroplane in functionality, has lots of systems simulation, but still has an acceptably low price compared to PMDG and FSL's offerings, whereby it is about half the price of some of their stuff. So that really is a lot of bang for your buck. If the Q400 wasn't such a fugly aerolane, it might even have been my favourite lol.

Among the other worthy jet contenders worth mentioning is TFDi Design's Boeing 717 (or MD95 if you don't subscribe to all that Boeing marketing nonsense, or souped up DC-9 if you don't subscribe to that kind of thing from McDonnell Douglas either) which is similarly comparable to all the other decent add-ons and ahead of them in one or two regards and features. 

If you prefer older airliners, you should definitely swing by A2A's website. Sometimes people ask me 'which developer do you think is the best Al, PMDG or FSL?' to which I always answer: 'Neither, the best developer is A2A.' That's not even a joke either, I really do think they are, simply because they've got such a broad range of products and every single one of them has been standout, everything from Spitfires to four engined prop airliners, realism utilities, 3D light utilities and so on, and they unquestionably make the best GA add-on aeroplane too, which of course answers your last question, because the best GA aeroplane for P3D is without any doubt whatsoever, A2A's Piper Commanche.

Anyway, don't expect everyone to agree with what I've said here, and don't even take my word for it either; just because I think this is the case doesn't mean you will agree with me, so check out some reviews before spending any cash. Except in the case of the A2A Commanche that is, I bet everyone agrees with me on that score. Good alternatives to that Commanche come from Milviz and Just Flight's PA-28 variants and Socvata Trinidad and Tobago add-on is worth a look too. If you want a really good GA twin, check out Fly SimWare's Cessna C441 Conquest II, Fly SimWare also make a really good LearJet 35 if you want a decent business jet.

Oh, and if you need a decent chopper, the Milviz UH-1 Huey is excellent. A decent cheaper alternative is again from Fly SimWare, who make a really nice Bell H-13 Sioux which being the chopper it is, is excellent for VFR with that big plexiglass canopy.

Weather wise you'll be needing something too, since by default P3D doesn't include realtime downloadable weather and the default clouds in P3D are, to put it bluntly, utterly cack. So, I'd recommend looking at Active Sky and possibly the Active Sky Cloud Art add-on which adds nice textures to it and improves its dynamic changes. It's pricey, but it is the best. Note that having these adds some functionality to quite a few payware aeroplanes, for example, the stormscope in that Just Flight Trinidad and Tobago work with Active Sky and some of the weather radars in a few of those airliners do too.

Keep in mind that some of that lot will set you back quite a few quid, and it's coming up to sale time for Black Friday and there are often Chistmas sales too, typically Captain Sim have one every year for example and some of their classic airliners are worth a look, although not many of their add-ons are updated to P3D yet. Most online stores will be having that sort of thing within the next couple of months, so if you can tolerate the wait, it will save you a lot of money.

In the meantime, you can improve the look of P3D quite a bit for no money at all if you get hold of Open Shade. It's not the only shading tweaker you can get for P3D, but it is the best freebie one. A Google search will find it pretty easily.

Something else you'll be wanting when it comes out soon will be A2A's AccuFeel, which is currently only available for FSX, but when it comes out for P3D V4, trust me, it'll be a no brainer purchase for everyone.

 

 

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2 hours ago, ssair1 said:

I've just delved into the world of Prepar3d V4, so forgive me for the beginner questions :) First off, I'm using a 34-inch ultra-wide Acer predator monitor, should I set my default views for widescreen on the settings menu or untick the box? Second question: how can I save my custom views to automatically come up the next time I open up Prepar3d? And the third question, I did purchase Orbx Vector, Global base, Open LC North American, HD Trees, isn't there another company that competes with them perhaps? Or any recommendations as to what must have scenery enhancements to buy next? As a regular X-Plane 11 user, I appreciate "photo real" scenery. And finally, what is the best airliner to purchase and the best GA aircraft? Responses will be greatly appreciated. 

Cheers! 

I would hold off a few weeks before purchasing anymore Orbx products. Historically the have a big sale towards the end of November.

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4 hours ago, ssair1 said:

best GA aircraft

A2A Simulations. C172 Trainer, C182 Skylane, Cherokee 180, Comanche 250.

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6 hours ago, ssair1 said:

First off, I'm using a 34-inch ultra-wide Acer predator monitor, should I set my default views for widescreen on the settings menu or untick the box?

Long story short: use widescreen.

6 hours ago, ssair1 said:

isn't there another company that competes with them perhaps? Or any recommendations as to what must have scenery enhancements to buy next?

Not really imho. If you want to get better scenery than those addons you mentioned I'd go for FTX regions. However, since you like photoreal: Orbx has started to work on photoreal FTX regions! First up will be FTX Netherlands Photoreal (which we all hope will be released this year already but well, it probably won't be here before 2018) and after that they will work on FTX PNW Photoreal. These addons will have 3D buildings everywhere (fitting in the footprint of all photoreal textures) and photoreal seasons too! You can't buy them yet but the future looks bright in this regard: Orbx is the best scenery developer out there imho.

1 hour ago, bills511 said:

A2A Simulations. C172 Trainer, C182 Skylane, Cherokee 180, Comanche 250.

+1

Although I would have said 'Comanche 250, Cherokee 180, C172 Trainer' because I think the Pipers are the best and the most fun. :wink: (And I don't own the C182.)

4 hours ago, Chock said:

the best GA aeroplane for P3D is without any doubt whatsoever, A2A's Piper Commanche.

Amen.

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Thank you, everyone, for the valuable responses. Glad to be apart of this community. :) 

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