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Terramax for X-Plane - First Impressions

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5 minutes ago, MarioDonick said:

To all of you who complain about the loading time

Not complaining as I have not purchase it, it just does not fit my own personal requirements.

 

6 minutes ago, MarioDonick said:

Or Laminar finally introduces shader-based seasons  (but I doubt this will come before X-Plane 12)

Then I would rather wait for 12, no hurry here,


Carlos Franklin

Sims: XPlane

Asus Sabertooth z77 - i7 3770k @ 4.6 HT WC - 32gb Corsair @ 2133 (XMP) - Asus GTX 1070 - 250 Evo Pro SSD for Win10 Pro - 500 Evo Pro SSD for XP11

 

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I'm surprised they even included an "Auto" switch for in-flight changes, since that has to be the worst-case situation. That's a ton of new data to load.

Personally, I don't think I'd be using that anyway. I usually fly no more than 200-300nm flights in GA aircraft and usually within the same seasonal zones, not transcontinental or other long hauls into vastly changing weather. I would just choose the season setting ahead of time and leave it alone.

I haven't bought it yet (busy weekend) but I will when I have more flying time. It would mean that the flying area up along the Inside Passage up into Alaska would finally look right in Winter. I'm tired of constant Summer up there.

And sure, it's a kludge. That's all we can expect for now, barring someone really getting under the hood of the scenery engine. Ideally, I'd like to see Austin's ideas for procedural weather, with particle effect snow blowing across runways, linked to the current weather data. Deciduous trees dropping their leaves at the right time, African and South American savannas turning brown in the dry season. It's the "right" way to do it, and it fits Laminar's focus on procedurally generated terrain and OSM autogen buildings based on constantly updated real-world data.

For now, It seems Laminar is busy on other stuff for v11, so this looks like v12 or further out. Meanwhile, I can at least look at a believable Alaska for the next couple of years.

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Primary sim is X-Plane 11 on Windows 10
i7 6700 4.0 GHz, 32 GB RAM, GTX 1660 ti, 1920x1200 monitor

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20 hours ago, MarioDonick said:

 

 

To all of you who complain about the loading time: Think a second about how X-Plane's scenery system works.

You will then see that ANY texture-based seasons addon will have such loading times. Why? Because for seeing a change, X-Plane needs to reload the scenery. And this scenery reload is what takes such a long time.

You can compare for yourself: Use the "reload scenery" menu command from the X-Plane menu ("developer" section). It takes also that long.

There are only two possibilities to change this behavior: Either Laminar changes how scenery is loaded (maybe in a way that not always the full amount of tiles is loaded, but maybe just the textures in next to your position, and the rest gets loaded in the background; similiar to the background load when you fly from one tile to another). Or Laminar finally introduces shader-based seasons (but I doubt this will come before X-Plane 12).

Complain? It's more about reality than complaint. Should we misrepresent the waiting time or tell the truth? The explanation is nice but it doesn't ameliorate the waiting. Personally I like the textures and was being charitable in my comments. But no use in sugar-coating the main issue.

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On 3/19/2018 at 4:51 PM, bgpearce01 said:

Another overpriced addon from x aviation that will hopefully be replaced by something better. 

If we're being honest, this kind of a comment does no one any good. At some point I hope this community learns to stop spreading hate, no matter the developer or vendor. I see it lashed towards everyone at some point, but it really serves no purpose other than to show a sense of immaturity.

On 3/18/2018 at 11:35 PM, signmanbob said:

Try about 5 minutes at least.  I got tired of waiting and shut down X-Plane through the Task Manager.  I'll be shutting TerraMaxx off completely until they get some updates. I can't stand pausing indefinitely.

It varies by computer. Some are 1 minute, some are 5. It's definitely not ideal, and it's definitely and immersion killer, and we have been upfront about that in marketing. We're trying to bend Laminar's arm at some point, but as with anything we have to start somewhere. When SkyMaxx Pro v1 got released 5 years ago we couldn't even shut off default clouds to save FPS. These things take time, but Laminar is pretty good about working with us so long as we can prove demand (and that means sales to justify the resource spent).

21 hours ago, Paraffin said:

I'm surprised they even included an "Auto" switch for in-flight changes, since that has to be the worst-case situation. That's a ton of new data to load.

If you're an online flyer it's not a good option. If you do you're own flying and you REALLY want auto season changes, then it's nice to have choice. It's a checkbox, so not like it was really a bad idea to offer (especially considering we want to work with Laminar on smoothing it out in time).

3 hours ago, Lenny777 said:

Complain? It's more about reality than complaint. Should we misrepresent the waiting time or tell the truth?

I don't see any problem in you telling the truth, and you should. You have valid concerns.

@MarioDonick is correct in what he has said. There is NO WAY around the load situation at this point and time based on what Laminar provides to programmers. Things will need to change in the X-Plane end first, but we'll work on that to express our needs just like we did for SkyMaxx Pro (which also benefited xEnviro in the end). Someone had to be first, so here we are. :-)

Edited by Cameron XA
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Founder of X-Aviation

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On 3/20/2018 at 4:32 PM, Cameron XA said:

It varies by computer. Some are 1 minute, some are 5. It's definitely not ideal, and it's definitely and immersion killer, and we have been upfront about that in marketing. We're trying to bend Laminar's arm at some point, but as with anything we have to start somewhere. When SkyMaxx Pro v1 got released 5 years ago we couldn't even shut off default clouds to save FPS. These things take time, but Laminar is pretty good about working with us so long as we can prove demand (and that means sales to justify the resource spent).

1

Is there any way to include a progress bar when loading these textures?  At least I would know that my sim hasn't frozen up.


Robert Yunque

PilotEdge Ratings =   CAT-11 (2016-09-13)  I-11 (2016-10-23)  V-3 (2016-08-01)

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Just now, signmanbob said:

Is there any way to include a progress bar when loading these textures?  At least I would know that my sim hasn't frozen up.

I meant to address that question! No, we can't. X-Plane controls the actual load process and doesn't give us any kind of progression. We simply say, "Hey X-Plane! Wake up and I command you to load this!"...after that it's all in the hands of Laminar, for which we get no progress feedback on to indicate a load percentage.


Founder of X-Aviation

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I bought this today. I loaded up a flight, I set to fall textures, the load time was very very long as has been reported...mine about 10 minutes. I did a short flight. I liked the results without getting too picky.

I then loaded in a new flight out of Orbx Manchester...the sim textures loading thing came on..and it took forever to do nothing it just stalled....after some 20 minutes or more I just shut down the sim.

And rebooted.

And then tried to load in Manchester from a cold reboot...the sim loaded normally but the texture were back to summer. So I clicked the change to fall...and the sim just sat there spinning and spinning doing nothing...my PC locked up. I rebooted my machine.

I'm frightened to even try this addon again...it seems dysfunctional not at all like I anticipated.

Bryan


Bryan Wallis aka "fltsimguy"

Maple Bay, British Columbia

Near CAM3

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On 3/19/2018 at 10:06 AM, Lenny777 said:

When it finally is in place looks pretty nice. But that wait......I would set it to hard winter until Spring, then change over manually before you fly next time for summer. The process of inserting textures on the fly is slow and painful. I would, however, prefer this than anything else out there. This whole thing is not ideal though. Flying FSX/P3D for years X-plane's history in this respect of changing textures/seasons has been miserable.

The problem is simple, Xplane11, already a large program, would quadruple in size, it is much larger than P3DV4, the texture format is just too big.  When I compare FSEarthtiles generated scenery to Xplane11 Orthophotos, the FSEarthtiles scenery comes out much smaller, it can be compressed to an acceptable compromise over quality whereas Ortho4XP has no compression option.  So it seems Xplane11 does not use compressed textures, its major hold up from what is otherwise a great sim.  It's footprint is enormous compared to P3DV4 and all my add-ons.  I just manage to have good performance with both sims, just manage, by the hair of my chinny chin chin, lol.  But in the end P3DV4 is more fluid, but I feel it has less detail than Xplane11 in terms of autogen and landclass and mesh, so that may be why I lean more towards Xplane these days than P3D.

John

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3 hours ago, 1st fltsimguy said:

I bought this today. I loaded up a flight, I set to fall textures, the load time was very very long as has been reported...mine about 10 minutes. I did a short flight. I liked the results without getting too picky.

I then loaded in a new flight out of Orbx Manchester...the sim textures loading thing came on..and it took forever to do nothing it just stalled....after some 20 minutes or more I just shut down the sim.

And rebooted.

And then tried to load in Manchester from a cold reboot...the sim loaded normally but the texture were back to summer. So I clicked the change to fall...and the sim just sat there spinning and spinning doing nothing...my PC locked up. I rebooted my machine.

I'm frightened to even try this addon again...it seems dysfunctional not at all like I anticipated.

Bryan

Bryan

I strongly suggest you contact the appropriate support channels.  The developers are always willing to help if there are any problems, and seeing as they don't frequent avsim that much, your complaints may go unnoticed.. 
As for the problems you are describing, there are way too many unknowns.  You could have scenery conflicts, too many plug ins, 3rd party scenery+ortho+terramax+etc...

It needs to be properly diagnosed for you to get any kind of solution.

 

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6 hours ago, Cactus521 said:

When I compare FSEarthtiles generated scenery to Xplane11 Orthophotos, the FSEarthtiles scenery comes out much smaller, it can be compressed to an acceptable compromise over quality whereas Ortho4XP has no compression option

P3D and AF2 internally compress the textures in their file formats so subsequently scenery is much much smaller.  Just look at how small a 5 season ORBX Netherlands was, or Aerofly's Florida. P3D and AF2 can store the same ortho scenery at nearly 20% the size of X-Plane.

DDS, that X-Plane uses, is somewhat compressed and a very efficient method of having textures, but also DDS textures contain mipmaps (reduced versions of the same texture to show at different levels), hence the size. There are ways around it, such as giving people the original jpegs and running a conversion over them (aka. Forkboy's US scenery), but well after conversion they still need a lot of storage space.

7 hours ago, 1st fltsimguy said:

I then loaded in a new flight out of Orbx Manchester...the sim textures loading thing came on..and it took forever to do nothing it just stalled....after some 20 minutes or more I just shut down the sim.

This product won't change the seasonal textures in ORBX Manchester (I'm the developer of that airport). It only changes the existing textures in the sim, and Barton doesn't use them. So you'd probably get a green oasis in the middle of snow which could look quite odd :). However, if it does crash, please send me over your log.txt file so I can rule out anything in the airport causing a crash.

 

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We do provide scenery developers the ability to integrate with TerraMAXX for seasonal variants.....

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13 hours ago, GoranM said:

Bryan

I strongly suggest you contact the appropriate support channels.  The developers are always willing to help if there are any problems, and seeing as they don't frequent avsim that much, your complaints may go unnoticed.. 
As for the problems you are describing, there are way too many unknowns.  You could have scenery conflicts, too many plug ins, 3rd party scenery+ortho+terramax+etc...

It needs to be properly diagnosed for you to get any kind of solution.

 

Ya, I know. I'm just really disappointed, another bloody addon that I have to mess around with to get working properly.  Sometime the tinkering and continual or ongoing tweaking can drive us nuts.

9 hours ago, tonywob said:

This product won't change the seasonal textures in ORBX Manchester (I'm the developer of that airport). It only changes the existing textures in the sim, and Barton doesn't use them. So you'd probably get a green oasis in the middle of snow which could look quite odd :). However, if it does crash, please send me over your log.txt file so I can rule out anything in the airport causing a crash.

 

Yes, thanks I'm aware of this issue, they have been clear about this in their information.

I'm going to start over, do the install with the less than 5gig video card option which I assume means less quality texture trees and see what happens.


Bryan Wallis aka "fltsimguy"

Maple Bay, British Columbia

Near CAM3

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