mikevio

Complete Newbie looking for advice

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Hi everyone!  Completely new to Flight Simulation!  Looking for advice on which flight simulator to buy.  Microsoft, Xplane?  I've been trying to read up as much as I can.

Anyway, does anyone have any advice on software to purchase or can you direct me to a beginners article.

 

Thank you!

Mike

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I recommend both P3DV4.4 and Xplane11.  Both have positive features and having both will broaden your sim experience.  Both have great default aircraft.  I feel Xplane11 has better default scenery, except for polar coverage.  P3D has better clouds and cloud shadows I feel and greater visibility options.  Which to buy first if you are on a budget?  Really tough call to make, I give the nod to P3D if you want payware add-on aircraft and payware photoreal scenery.  Xplane11 however offers free Ortho4XP for making your own Photoreal scenery.  P3DV4 offers free FSEarthTiles but making coastlines for P3D is challenging, I have only made inland areas.  My Colorado scenery, for FSX and P3D is free in Avsim's library if you want ample photoreal scenery to fly over.  I also have a freeware trike in Avsim library, which works best in P3D and I feel models slow flight the best of any flight model in a sim--made by a real world trike pilot, Me....

John

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55 minutes ago, John_Cillis said:

I recommend both P3DV4.4 and Xplane11.  Both have positive features and having both will broaden your sim experience.  Both have great default aircraft.  I feel Xplane11 has better default scenery, except for polar coverage.  P3D has better clouds and cloud shadows I feel and greater visibility options.  Which to buy first if you are on a budget?  Really tough call to make, I give the nod to P3D if you want payware add-on aircraft and payware photoreal scenery.  Xplane11 however offers free Ortho4XP for making your own Photoreal scenery.  P3DV4 offers free FSEarthTiles but making coastlines for P3D is challenging, I have only made inland areas.  My Colorado scenery, for FSX and P3D is free in Avsim's library if you want ample photoreal scenery to fly over.  I also have a freeware trike in Avsim library, which works best in P3D and I feel models slow flight the best of any flight model in a sim--made by a real world trike pilot, Me....

John

I’m going to check out your Colorado scenery for sure.  I was looking into Mega but honestly I’m not to impressed with it.  

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4 hours ago, mikevio said:

Hi everyone!  Completely new to Flight Simulation!  Looking for advice on which flight simulator to buy.  Microsoft, Xplane?  I've been trying to read up as much as I can.

Anyway, does anyone have any advice on software to purchase or can you direct me to a beginners article.

 

Thank you!

Mike

Tough decision.  Both have pluses and minuses.  My opinion on each.

XP11-  Better looking out of the box. Ortho4XP is a huge plus. Better flight modeling.  Much less payware addons. Cloud and sky modeling leaves a lot to be desired.  Default airports are much, much better looking.  AI traffic and ATC is lacking. 

P3D- Default scenery and most airports are very bland and ugly.  Much better weather, cloud, and sky modeling.  Much better selection of payware.  P3D in my opinion is superior but u have to fork out some serious cash to get it there.  

If I was on a limited budget it would be XP.  U can make very nice looking scenery for free using Ortho4XP.  Most of the default airports look much better. The default planes are better.  There is the Zibo mod 737 that rivals most payware and it is free.  If I was not on a budget it would P3D.  

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Cheapest option would be the Steam version of Microsoft Flight Simulator X, which was updated and recompiled to work a little better by Dovetail and is colloquially called FSX-SE (Steam Edition). It usually sells for around 20 quid, but can occasionally be found discounted to 7 quid.

A disadvantage of FSX-SE is that it is a 32 Bit application, whereas the current versions of P3D and XPlane are both 64 Bit applications. This means FSX-SE is limited to only being able to use a maximum of 4 Gigabytes of memory. This is not terrible news, after all, up until fairly recently it was what pretty much everyone used, and that limitation only really becomes problematic if you start using lots of fancy add-ons. So as an inexpensive introduction to flight dimming, it is still a good choice, but if you subsequently find that flight swimming is something you really want to get into, it is as well to be aware that FSX-SE is effectively now 'frozen in time' and will never be developed any further and will always therefore be subject to that 4Gb limitation. Because of this, more and more payware developers are moving away from it, but having said that, there are still quite a few add ons being made which work in both P3D and FSX-SE, so it is possible to 'dip your toe in the water' of flight simming with FSX-SE and still have some add-on purchases you might make be also viable for use with P3D if you later decided to get into it.

Up until fairly recently, it was reasonably fair to say that P3D lent itself best to airliner simulation and XPlane was better for simulating light aircraft, but that line is becoming increasingly blurred and they are now both good choices for either in most respects although there is still a little bit of truth in that distinction. 

Of the two, XPlane is a bit prettier out of the box so to speak, and P3D has perhaps more variety of add ons for it, but again they can both be changed and souped up by throwing a lot of add ons at them, so it is really down to personal preference in many respects.

If you want my recommendation though, I'd say get FSX-SE and see how you like it, since it is very similar to P3D but inexpensive to try out, and also try the freebie demo of XPlane. If FSX-SEfloats your boat, then consider P3D, if on the other hand you like XPlane from trying the demo, go for that.Or, you might decide to get all of them and enjoy all their various different merits.There is no rule which says you have to limit yourself to just one of them although it could potentially get expensive to indulge yourself with all of them. So take your time and spend economically until you are sure of what you like.

Most of all, have fun. :-)

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1 hour ago, Adrian123 said:

It is an endless summer in Xplane. No seasons.

Not quite true... There are free seasons available at Xplane.org but they do take up disk space....

I downloaded one to my download folder but cannot install it until I clear up some disk space.  There is a thread lower in this forum about it, or in the screenshots forum, cannot remember where it was posted but the shots looked great...

John

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39 minutes ago, John_Cillis said:

There are free seasons available at Xplane.org

There are some pretty significant limitations to it's usage, I would NOT recommend this XP11 seasons hack to any users new to flight simulation.

7 hours ago, mikevio said:

Looking for advice on which flight simulator to buy.

Lockheed Martin's Prepar3D V4.4 and/or Laminar Research Xplane 11.  Do NOT waste your money on a dead end product like FSX/FSX-SE that has no future development work (aka no updates of any kind).  FSX/FSX-SE would NOT represent the best that flight simulation has to offer.

Cheers, Rob.

Edited by Rob Ainscough
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I’m not sure why Chock is recommending FSX SE except maybe from a price point of view but don’t buy it.  It will not give u a fair representation of what P3D offers.  FSX looks horrible compared to P3D v4.  

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What is your actual PC (CPU & GPU) and what kind of flying are you looking for ? Are you looking to fly low and slow or high and fast (airliners) ?

Mike

Edited by Mikelab6

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I recommended FSX-SE because it can often be found discounted to less than the price of a couple of beers, and is broadly similar to P3D is capabilities, so if is an inexpensive way to determine if P3D would suit, since P3D is fairly expensive. XPlane on the other hand has a free demo. So buying FSX-SE for a fiver and trying the free demo of XPlane is the cheapest way to preview both options.

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I believe P3D has a 60 day money back guarantee so if you're a noob and you don't know yet if you like flight sim you can try it without risk. As Chock mentioned XPlane has a free demo.

When I was a noob I found the FSX beginner missions and flying school to be very helpful, not sure if these other sims have a flying school. That might be a reason to go with FSX and FSX:SE is pretty cheap to dip a toe in, just don't invest in a lot of expensive addons unless they also include a P3D version. Otherwise there are loads of flying tutorials on YouTube.

Another thing to consider is a joystick. I got started with a $20 joystick and once I got seriously into it I bought TrackIR and eventually a yoke and rudder pedals. Some kind of controller is helpful for a beginner because you'll find it hard to handle the aircraft with just a keyboard/mouse.

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3 hours ago, Chock said:

Up until fairly recently, it was reasonably fair to say that P3D lent itself best to airliner simulation and XPlane was better for simulating light aircraft, but that line is becoming increasingly blurred and they are now both good choices for either in most respects although there is still a little bit of truth in that distinction. 

I agree with that, especially in regard to programmed ATC and AI aircraft.

I would add one more difference, and that's helicopters. For anyone with an interest in civilian helicopters, I think the flight modeling in X-Plane is superior to anything except maybe DCS, a combat sim. There are a few failure modes that are either missing (mast bump) or not quite right yet (vortex ring state), but overall the modeling is very good. The new 11.30 update even includes separate modeling of the front and rear of the rotor disk in ground effect, to account for what happens when you approach an elevated helipad.

There isn't a huge selection of types compared to FSX, but the better ones like the payware Bell 412 and Bell 407 in X-Plane are excellent. And there is a wonderful free model in the Bell 429. More are in the works, like a Hughes 500.

2 hours ago, John_Cillis said:

Not quite true... There are free seasons available at Xplane.org but they do take up disk space....

There is also TerraMaxx payware, although it's designed more for "set and forget" when you're flying for an extended period in somewhere like Alaska, where you want more realistic snow cover. The loading is too slow for swapping out the textures if you're flying long-distance into different seasonal conditions.

20 minutes ago, fs4fun said:

Another thing to consider is a joystick. I got started with a $20 joystick and once I got seriously into it I bought TrackIR and eventually a yoke and rudder pedals. Some kind of controller is helpful for a beginner because you'll find it hard to handle the aircraft with just a keyboard/mouse.

Agreed, and go beyond a joystick into pedals if you want to learn how real aircraft are controlled. They're also practically mandatory for flying helicopters in full realism mode.

Edited by Paraffin

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Whilst it is true that P3D does have a money back guarantee policy, you do need to spend the cash initially to be in that position lol. But beyond this and the other fairly sound reasons why it might be worth giving FSX-SE a shot, it is worth bearing in mind too that even if you decided you liked it and went for P3D as a result of this, even the small amount you'd spent on FSX-SE would not be a waste, since there are in fact quite a few very good simulator add-ons for it which you simply cannot get for P3D, and not only this, FSX add-ons are often cheaper than their P3D counterparts as well. Just off the top of my head, here's a few which you can get for FSX that are not available for P3D:

Simcheck Airbus A300-B4, Uiver Douglas DC-2, CS Weapon for FSX, Flight Keeper, Dodosim Bell 206 JetRanger, PMDG McDonnell Douglas MD-11, PMDG BAe JS4100 Jetstream.

Moreover, there are one or two FSX aeroplanes which, whilst they can be ported to P3D comparatively easily, actually will not install without the presence of FSX on your system. Now it is true that you can create a dummy FSX install to get around that if you know what you are doing, but it's really a lot simpler to buy FSX-SE for a fiver and have it anyway for the benefit of flying all of the above aeroplanes and such. I in fact made use of this yesterday, having bought a Vertigo Simulations boxed set which included the F9F Panther, F8F Bearcat, SBD Dauntless and the P36 Hawk, all for the princely sum of two quid, and the installer would only work with FSX installed on my system, so to get them to work in P3D V4.4, all I had to do was copy and paste the folders into P3D from that FSX-SE install and that was it, done. So it is certainly useful to have FSX-SE sat on your drive to facilitate such things.

Edited by Chock
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3 minutes ago, Paraffin said:

I agree with that, especially in regard to programmed ATC and AI aircraft.

I would add one more difference, and that's helicopters. For anyone with an interest in civilian helicopters, I think the flight modeling in X-Plane is superior to anything except maybe DCS, a combat sim. There are a few failure modes that are either missing (mast bump) or not quite right yet (vortex ring state), but overall the modeling is very good. The new 11.30 update even includes separate modeling of the front and rear of the rotor disk in ground effect, to account for what happens when you approach an elevated helipad.

There isn't a huge selection of types compared to FSX, but the better ones like the payware Bell 412 and Bell 407 in X-Plane are excellent. And there is a wonderful free model in the Bell 429. More are in the works, like a Hughes 500.

There is also TerraMaxx payware, although it's designed more for "set and forget" when you're flying for an extended period in somewhere like Alaska, where you want more realistic snow cover. The loading is too slow for swapping out the textures if you're flying long-distance into different seasonal conditions.

Agreed, and go beyond a joystick into pedals if you want to learn how real aircraft are controlled. They're also practically mandatory for flying helicopters in full realism mode.

If you do not have room or the right furniture for rudder pedals, I recommend the Logitech Extreme 3D pro with its twist rudder.  It is the ONLY joystick that has ever given me the nuances of rudder pedals I used in my real flight training especially on a Luscombe 8A Taildragger once about ten years ago..

Its rudder pedals and controls were perfectly harmonized, I was so content flying it, I only let go so the owner could land us due to some approaching embedded thunderstorms that aborted our flight early.  We both recognized a hidden flash and both agreed, flight over.   As we just touched down on a grass strip it started to pour but that lovely Luscombe held true and did not ground loop in the owners skilled yet gentle limbs.  A cub pilot friend of his could not get off the ground that day, he could not hand prop his Cub sadly, we tried to help him.  When the Luscombe's owner saw that I was comfortable trying the "Armstrong" starter, he let me start his aircraft for him, quite like the forger in the movie the Great Escape, but I turned the prop, not a crank and with just a smooth quarter turn I got the Luscombe smoothly started with my feet positioned to move backward like the owner taught me. 

There is an electric start stc now out for the Luscombe.  I would not buy a hand started one because law requires two persons to be present when starting a hand start aircraft at controlled airfields in the US.  A wise law because hand starting an aircraft improperly and alone, without ropes on the chocks can cause an aircraft to run away from you, and it takes a highly coordinated effort to do so alone==even at low idle aircraft can move, unlike in our sims, I have been there and done that in real life many times in my aborted lessons ten years ago...

John

 

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Wow, thanks everyone! Appreciate all the feedback! Seriously!  Looking to fly airliner initially. The A-320 specifically.

 

Thanks again everyone!

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2 hours ago, Chock said:

and is broadly similar to P3D is capabilities

You're making me cringe Alan when you make comments like that ... anyway, not getting into the long long long list of difference from DX11 to 64bit to, to PBR, to ...

P3D has 60 day money back guarantee and can cost $60-$200 pending version purchase.  XP11 has a free demo that will last 30 minutes and you get two areas to fly around.

As far as Commercial aircraft XP11 have some great choices from Flight Factor A320 and IXEG 737, but these are not on the same level of complexity and feature set as PMDG 747, 777, 737 and/or FSLabs A319/A320.

Out of the box experience is better in XP11.  AddOn experience is better with P3D and there are many more P3D add-ons but XP11 is now getting more AddOn attention also.

Both support VR.

Both support PBR.

Water (3D waves) are better in P3D, the waves are far more diverse and respond to wind speed and direction with nice white caps and even shoreline waves.

Reflections, P3D supports more reflection types and more detailed "dynamic" reflections on the aircraft and/or any reflective surface that is setup to support Dynamic Reflections ... at it's highest setting DR includes sky/cloud reflections on reflective surfaces and even other aircraft and vehicles including terrain, trees, etc. (windows, metal, etc.).  XP11 has reflections also but they are more restrictive which helps them perform better even if some loss in detail.

Visuals, the default Autogen and terrain in P3D is very dated and bland. 

XP11 has a horrible brown haze 24/7 (it can be removed with some work and/or addOns).

Shadow quality in XP11 is bad, just turn it off. 

P3D terrain is known to "shift" (especially in mountain regions) during flight, how much it shifts will depend on graphics settings and add-ons used.

Weather, still not there in XP11, P3D weather depiction is much better with more accurate winds aloft data.

Flight models, both have good and bad ones and has been debated endlessly which is better, P3D does allow any aircraft vendor to do their OWN flight model and/or even partially do their own

Seasons, no "native" support in XP11 (as mentioned) but there are some hacks available but still not really viable IMHO.  P3D has native support for seasons.

Night lighting ... this used to be heavily in favor of XP11, but with the addition of Dynamic Lights in P3D and some updates from various add-on vendors they're very similar now, however, P3D Dynamic Lights do require that you have a strong GPU in order to use them.

XP11 and P3D have OrthoXP which is a great way to get "free" photoreal content into your sim, it does take some work but OrthoXP makes the process easier.

Particle effects, XP11.3x add this feature recently, P3D has had a similar system for a long time but it can be a little quirky to work.

Shader support, XP11 officially says "don't mess with their shaders" but there are products that do.  P3D supports shader changes with several shader products from PTA, TOGO Projects ENVSHADE, TomatoShade, others.  So whatever your shader desire to reach whatever "visuals" you like/want can be achieved with either XP11 or P3D.

Textures, both XP11 and P3D have support for texture replacements and they can make a dramatic difference (especially sky textures).

AI aircraft, work much better in P3D and you can a lot more of them without a huge drop in performance.  No need to generate taxi pathways at airports like one has to do with many of the XP11 airports.  P3D is single install and go, no reliance on other products/downloads to work correctly.

P3D has an Avatar mode, where you can jump out of an aircraft/vehicle and walk around the area and even supports object external triggers (i.e. opening doors etc.) and you can jump into a different aircraft/vehicle in networked multiplayer session.

P3D now supports high resolution Photoreal with 512x512 and 1024x1024 terrain textures, this was a big weakness in P3D prior to V4.4.

Aircraft lights, horrible in XP11 (big giant size blobs when you look at them head on same with Nav lights) and there seems to be no "solution"?

P3D takes some work to get stutter free performance especially if one is running a 60Hz monitor.

ATC "as is" is better in P3D.  There are add-on for both that will improve the ATC experience, but P3D still has the ATC edge.

Since you didn't mention a "budget", I'll assume it's not relevant to you without more information to go on.  But please don't waste your time with FSX/FSX-SE, those products are NOT similar in capabilities to P3D.  XP11 and/or P3D V4.4 are really the best options available.

In summary, "out of the box" (no additional content/add-ons) will be better with XP11.  However, if you have some cash to spend, then carefully selected addOns for P3D V4.4 will be very rewarding also.

This is probably going to start a long debate of X vs. Y, but both platforms are worth the investment, unfortunately to see the best out of P3D does require more AddOn purchases.  And both platforms will require the use of a "blind eye" (aka compromises and ignoring obvious issues).

Cheers, Rob.

 

 

 

Edited by Rob Ainscough
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29 minutes ago, Rob Ainscough said:

You're making me cringe Alan when you make comments like that ... anyway, not getting into the long long long list of difference from DX11 to 64bit to, to PBR, to ...

Yup, but that's not the point of my post, I'm trying to help someone who asked for advice on which sim to choose, to find a way to decide between a couple of the big choices, and I presented a way for them to determine that, at little cost.

What you list there are pretty much all visual difference capabilities between FSX-SE and P3D V4.4, and as such they are best harnessed by what they can bring to payware add-on development in the eye candy department, so this is not something which is going to immediately be of import to someone who is at the point of evaluating sims before deciding which one to go with. Pictures can do that part for them, what they need to know at this point is how well does it simulate flight and does it do it in a way they are pleased with. How much you can tart it up is not an issue at this stage of the proceedings.

Pretty much everyone I've ever seen comment on P3D when they first use it, and particularly those coming from FSX, has mentioned that they were disappointingly surprised that it doesn't look that great out of the box and in fact is barely discernible from FSX, not least because it doesn't even have a decent simulation of live weather or clouds in a bare bones install. So yes, the improved visual capabilities you mention mean it can look a lot better courtesy of some add-ons, but P3D and FSX-SE are basically the same flight simulator in terms of what they can simulate flight model-wise, and before one festoons it with add-ons, P3D really does not look much different from FSX at all, nor does it need to if you are principally testing its ability to simulate flight.

Because this is the case, that's enough capability in FSX-SE for someone to determine whether they like the way it does that or not with a sim which they can get hold of for a few quid rather than spending very much more on P3D only to perhaps find they might prefer the way XPlane goes about that sort of thing (that's up to them to decide, but it is my point here).

If you want to call it potential eye candy simulator, then it is true, P3D can indeed ultimately look a lot better than FSX and won't CTD whilst doing it owing to a VAS limit, but then again, XPlane is better than both of them put together in at least that regard, so again it's a matter of preference and wasn't my point anyway.

Edited by Chock
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1 hour ago, Chock said:

to find a way to decide between a couple of the big choices, and I presented a way for them to determine that, at little cost.

Understood, but cost was never mentioned and I would NOT consider FSX/FSX-SE aa part of the "big choice" as it's rapidly losing market share and has ZERO ongoing development.

1 hour ago, Chock said:

what they need to know at this point is how well does it simulate flight

Is that what they need to know?  I didn't see any mention of flight physics?  If they were interested in flight physics as a deciding factor, then I would mention that a tail dragger is XP11 was close to impossible to taxi and takeoff in even 4 Kts winds ... I haven't tested my ASDG Piper Super Cub in XP11.3x recently to see if Laminar fixed this problem (problems that cause aircraft developer to introduce invisible canard and/or skids to try and make the aircraft behave with believable accuracy in XP11), reports are it's better but still some issues.  Because flight physics haven't changed that much in P3D does that mean it's a bad thing?  There have been endless debates regarding flight physics on both sides and the conclusions are always the same one is no more accurate than the other.

1 hour ago, Chock said:

What you list there are pretty much all visual difference capabilities between FSX-SE and P3D V4.4

No I didn't, re-read, there are actually many additional visual items I left out like Cloud Shadows, Tessellation, and more that is P3D exclusive.  I covered a wide spectrum of features of the two main flight simulators P3D and XP11 not just "visuals".

1 hour ago, Chock said:

Pretty much everyone I've ever seen comment on P3D when they first use it, and particularly those coming from FSX, has mentioned that they were disappointingly surprised that it doesn't look that great out of the box and in fact is barely discernible from FSX

I find that hard to believe and contrary to my experience.  Anyone coming from FSX will already be conditioned with a multitude of AddOns and well aware of the "out of box" experience so I doubt an existing FSX user would be surprised.  FSX users will have a high likelihood or free upgrades of addOns to P3D version and/or a small cost to upgrade a FSX license to P3D (with some exceptions of certain vendors).  But, the OP posted "Microsoft or Xplane" ... which in itself is a little odd given the information contained here at AVSIM ... but no mention the OP has experience with FSX.  Heck this could just be a "seed" thread for all I know (I've seen that before many times), but I'll take the OP at face value and provide as much information regarding the two "main" platforms as possible in a very quick synopsis.

1 hour ago, Chock said:

If you want to call it potential eye candy simulator, then it is true, P3D can indeed ultimately look a lot better than FSX and won't CTD whilst doing it owing to a VAS limit, but then again, XPlane is better than both of them put together in at least that regard

Both simulators provide eye candy (as they should, it sells), P3D provides more eye candy than XP11 per those features I listed that simply aren't being rendered in XP11.

I provide as much info (missed a few things) as I could that may or may not be relevant to the OP.  And I was pretty clear "out of the box" XP11 does a better job ... but that doesn't mean it is the better choice for the OP, only he/she can decide what is important to them.  But providing the OP with an option that says "try the 1959 Porsche 356B" (aka FSX) and then try the 2019 Porsche 911 Carrera (aka XP11) ... rather than tell the OP to try the 2019 Porsche 911 Carrera (XP11) vs. the 2019 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S (P3D V4.4).

Cheers, Rob.

 

Edited by Rob Ainscough
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One easy way to trial P3D, buy a one month developer's license, last time I checked it was something like $9.99. Although... going to my next point:

Rob, I'm curious, do you work for Lockheed Martin? You are touting/praising the benefits of P3D over FSX-SE and X-Plane, convincing someone that the $200 price tag is worth it and claim a long list of features that other sims either lack or P3D just does better, but this is just your opinion. I don't think anyone can argue that P3D is lacking out of the box, and for $200 you'd expect much more, namely:

  • A usable and working camera system
  • Much better and smoother performance
  • 2018-2019 nav-data, and not the same data and closed airports from 2006
  • A nicely simulated G1000 or GNS530 that does some effort to at least simulate the real thing

At least without the last two, how can it be considered a professional simulator worth the $200 every 2 years or so?. It amazes me that people find this acceptable. As for seasons, if you consider P3D's native support of seasons a great feature (Which you've argued about at ORBX) then I ask you to fly over the UK in winter, and then do so in real-life, and you'll see just how bad this feature is. I'm glad both iPacs and LR see that this method of doing seasons is wrong and are looking at other solutions. You also list many advantages P3D has over FSX-SE, but out of the box, in my opinion, it is still not much different visually than FSX, and people seem to forget that P3D is on its 4th major version now. There is absolutely nothing I can't do in P3D v4 that I couldn't do in FSX-SE, so this is what I see as a user, and not that it may support some API internally that very few devs want to use.

DTG's FSW had more new features in it on its first version that the average user would care about, but it was ripped apart by the community with many not even giving it a chance. 

If you're a jet flier, then perhaps the addons are still better in FSX/P3D, but for the GA flier, I'd say there is better choice on X-Plane, and it won't cost and arm and a leg to do so. If you're a jet flier and don't fly over complicated scenery, then you can save some money just sticking to FSX-SE as the "pro" tag is missing from the products (which are identical anyway).

 

 

 

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There are some innaccuracies in @Rob Ainscough post that needs to be corrected so that readers who don't know anything about XP11 (such as the OP)  can know how it actually works there (and Rob might also learn something new, which i think is the very core of sharing experiences in our favourite "games"). I'll quote what i believe is an uncorrect statement and the following one will be my reply. What i don't quote of course is something i agree enough with Rob with 🙂 Bear with me.

 

Quote

P3D has 60 day money back guarantee and can cost $60-$200 pending version purchase.  XP11 has a free demo that will last 30 minutes and you get two areas to fly around.

This starts with an assumption that comes from my usage of the XP10 demo back then, the XP11 demo can be run as many times as you want even tho every session is time limited. This of course is not enough time for a full airline flight but more than enough to focus on individual features.

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As far as Commercial aircraft XP11 have some great choices from Flight Factor A320 and IXEG 737, but these are not on the same level of complexity and feature set as PMDG 747, 777, 737 and/or FSLabs A319/A320.

I think you meant airline aircrafts. In which case the Zibo 737 and the Ultimate 737 projects both needs to be mentioned. What they are, well, they are different versions of the Boeing 737 line free, which are constantly developed by Zibo and few others and receive changes weekly. The audio part is also supported by FMOD and is quite realistic in my experience. Being a free project, it is well integrated with other projects made by other members of the community (Tablet for settings, reading charts, terrain radar, custom FMC fonts and so on).

If we are talking about commercial aircrafts, i think the Saab 340 above all needs to be here too since it is used commercially. And so can the Toliss Airbus 319.

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Shadow quality in XP11 is bad, just turn it off. 

Unclear statement, if you mean jagged lines those can be easily fixed by increasing the shadow size. If it's not about that, i don't know, because i consider the shadows on the scenery pretty decent. 

 

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Weather, still not there in XP11, P3D weather depiction is much better with more accurate winds aloft data.

Most P3D users are using Active Sky for accurate winds aloft data, which happen to have reached Xplane too. If we talk about default weather then, i believe P3D cannot download real weather at all like FSX, FSX-SE and X-Plane can.

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P3D does allow any aircraft vendor to do their OWN flight model and/or even partially do their own

FlightFactor A320 is an example of an addon which is running their own flight model entirely outside of the X-Plane environment.

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Night lighting ... this used to be heavily in favor of XP11, but with the addition of Dynamic Lights in P3D and some updates from various add-on vendors they're very similar now, however, P3D Dynamic Lights do require that you have a strong GPU in order to use them.

They will be similar once P3D dynamic lights will be applied to any light source, everywhere on the planet. It isn't so now since it is still based on addon vendors to introduce them on their own scenery, and as you said, they do require a strong GPU to be used.

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P3D has an Avatar mode, where you can jump out of an aircraft/vehicle and walk around the area and even supports object external triggers (i.e. opening doors etc.) and you can jump into a different aircraft/vehicle in networked multiplayer session.

XP doesn't have an "Avatar mode", but interacting with external triggers is perfectly possible and an example of such a thing is the DreamFoil 407.

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Aircraft lights, horrible in XP11 (big giant size blobs when you look at them head on same with Nav lights) and there seems to be no "solution"?

It's one of the easiest fixes out there Rob, a lot of the famous .lua files includes such a fix and there are other tools instead which can make you change them visually while running the sim itself, find the configuration that you like the most, save it and have it auto loaded into the sim every time.

 

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That's all folks, i'll stress again the fact that the points not mentioned in this post are things i generally agree with. But the above mentioned things had to be clarified for the sake of the reader.

 

Edited by france89
fixed layout
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4 hours ago, tonywob said:

 

If you're a jet flier, then perhaps the addons are still better in FSX/P3D, but for the GA flier, I'd say there is better choice on X-Plane, and it won't cost and arm and a leg to do so. If you're a jet flier and don't fly over complicated scenery, then you can save some money just sticking to FSX-SE as the "pro" tag is missing from the products (which are identical anyway).

 

Maybe I'm missing your point but my biggest issue with Xplane is the lack of quality GA aircraft.  If you are looking for an ultra realistic simulation u have the AFL 172 and that is about it.  The REP packages are nice but don't come close to A2A quality.  I feel the XP flight model is superior for GA use but then the ground handling is way off.

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A good part of your decision should be based on your hardware.  If you have an older computer system, 3,4 or 5 years old for example, P3D and X-Plane may not work that well.   FSX:SE may be the way to go.  If you have a new up-to-date computer with the latest graphics card then X-Plane or P3D for sure. Some items to think about. Seasons, X-Plane does not have built in seasons. FSX:SE and P3D do. What this means if you in Canada in the winter, P3D / FSX will have snow on the ground, X-Plane will not. P3D and X-Plane are in consistent development. After a major update some add-ons may not work right away, the developers have to modified their products to work with the new versions.  sometimes they charge for an upgrade.  This will not happen with FSX:SE.  All three sims will cater to what ever flying you will want to from the smallest ultra light to the largest airliner.  Some people are still flying FS2002 and FS2004 (FS9) and are very happy and some are flying P3D and X-Plane and are still not happy, LOL.  I still fly FSX:SE because of my older computer and I'm still very happy with it.

John Cottreau

 

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Rob Ainscough’s P3D bias is so obvious it is embarrassing to say the least. It’s amusing how he went to such lengths to mention pros and cons of XP vs P3D only to be corrected by someone who actually uses XP, which Rob clearly does NOT based on his ignorance of simple lua script fixes for the sim and lack of any videos of him using it on his Youtube page (other than to show supposed flaws in XP bs P3D relating to CPU core threading). He even blames XP causing “drift” on an Xbox controller in one video when in fact he had Cinema Verte mode enabled which was the real cause 😉 

It is becoming a bit annoying to see Rob’s bias negatively influencing potential new adopters of XP11, particularly when he behaves like an expert witness, but is anything but.

What is the agenda here?

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