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pracines

New ATC voice database coming to P3D

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Thanks Paul, this is a great news, this will renew the old ESP atc platform and will align with the modern AIRAC so we can use the default ATC.

In this way do you think we can forget  3rd-party atc addon?

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1 hour ago, riccardo74 said:

In this way do you think we can forget  3rd-party atc addon?

Depends on what you're after in terms of ATC. These voices are just a redo of the existing ones as I understand with some minor phraseology changes, probably like EditVoicepack does. The default ATC still won't include things like SIDs/STARs or any realistic procedures for that matter that it always lacked. So if you want realistic ATC I can't see how this changes the current situation of default vs. addon ATC. Me be staying with addon ATC for sure.

I don't want to be the party pooper here but what I always liked about the default ATC is that the voices sound pretty good and not robotic at all. These voices, to me, just sound like TTS voices with radio editing and very robotic. This is not to say I don't appreciate their effort or the result.

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16 minutes ago, threegreen said:

Depends on what you're after in terms of ATC. These voices are just a redo of the existing ones as I understand with some minor phraseology changes, probably like EditVoicepack does. The default ATC still won't include things like SIDs/STARs or any realistic procedures for that matter that it always lacked. So if you want realistic ATC I can't see how this changes the current situation of default vs. addon ATC. Me be staying with addon ATC for sure.

I don't want to be the party pooper here but what I always liked about the default ATC is that the voices sound pretty good and not robotic at all. These voices, to me, just sound like TTS voices with radio editing and very robotic. This is not to say I don't appreciate their effort or the result.

I agree.  The voices don't sound nothing like the default original FS ATC at all which I think were real recordings.  These "new" voices I believe are those TTS voice sets with some modifications.  How clever of FSAERODATA....I'll be curious on how much they will be charging for this.

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2 hours ago, riccardo74 said:

In this way do you think we can forget  3rd-party atc addon?

I personally use the default ATC for many IFR GA flights and all VFR flights.

I also use the default ATC as background chatter when using Radar Contact 4.3. I use Radar Contact for Airline ( and some long distance GA) IFR, for the ease of use, flexibility, transition ALT/LVL, and Copilot communications as needed. 

It will be nice to hear correct phrasing of every airport name (with a comm. channel), and all the ATC facilities properly spoken, instead of just "center" "control" "approach" "departure". Also all the airline names and added aircraft models spoken. The comparison chart illustrates what's new .

Because I fly all over the world in all kinds of situations, this product is a very useful improvement for my situation.

 

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45 minutes ago, threegreen said:

"I don't want to be the party pooper here but what I always liked about the default ATC is that the voices sound pretty good and not robotic at all. These voices, to me, just sound like TTS voices with radio editing and very robotic. This is not to say I don't appreciate their effort or the result."

Ditto... (robotic voice) 😉

 

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That’s one thing that MS got right with default ATC was the voice sounds were incredibly authentic. Unfortunately the functionality of it is quite the opposite. 

ATC is the only aspect left of the ESP sim that hasn’t been cracked yet. None of the myriad third party offerings come close to the simplicity and ease of use of the default ATC. 

This is a step in the right direction, though. 

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I agree with others. While we get an addon for almost everything you can think of and for most planes you could think of flying, an addon for proper ATC is still not really existing or the ones that we have are not really developed any further and support is limited. I wonder why? Is it really that much of an hassle to develop a proper ATC addon? I mean: PMDG reaches only Boeing fans and some more, FSL reaches the Airbus fans, A2A the GA community etc. All developers of most currently available addons somehow still serve a niche inside a niche. With a good ATC addon, you would be one of the few reaching almost all flightsimmer all over the world. The potential market is huge compared to almost any other addon (except weather and global addons). Yet nobody dares to start developing such an addon...

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I use default ATC, and I think that the voices are very realistic. I just wish that the P3D development team would look at sorting out a few minor issues.......like the annoying "stop/continue/stop/continue/stop...." messages whenever an AI plane is behind me :angry: It would also be nice to see the AI planes moving a bit faster when they are on a taxiway link just short of a displaced runway threshold. A good example of this is UK2000 Gatwick Xtreme. There are two hold short points for runway 26L at this airport, and the AI planes move sssooooo ssslllloooowwwwlllllyyyy up to the runway threshold from one of them. It offsets the advantage of having two hold short positions for departures. I really do not understand why they move much slower in situations like this than they do on normal taxiways..... :huh:

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6 hours ago, AnkH said:

I agree with others. While we get an addon for almost everything you can think of and for most planes you could think of flying, an addon for proper ATC is still not really existing or the ones that we have are not really developed any further and support is limited. I wonder why? Is it really that much of an hassle to develop a proper ATC addon? I mean: PMDG reaches only Boeing fans and some more, FSL reaches the Airbus fans, A2A the GA community etc. All developers of most currently available addons somehow still serve a niche inside a niche. With a good ATC addon, you would be one of the few reaching almost all flightsimmer all over the world. The potential market is huge compared to almost any other addon (except weather and global addons). Yet nobody dares to start developing such an addon...

If it were easy to do you can be sure someone would have done it already. There have been numerous ATC programs over the years. (I've owned all of them) They've all been lacking in one way or another. As you stated, it's the one addon whose appeal would be universal. There's a ton of money to be made if a developer came up with a program that contained the best of all of the programs that came before. I don't think we'll see it anytime soon.

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1 hour ago, mwilk said:

If it were easy to do you can be sure someone would have done it already.  There's a ton of money to be made if a developer came up with a program that contained the best of all of the programs that came before. I don't think we'll see it anytime soon.

Of all the technologies out there for any simulator, the ATC has to be the biggest let down, we are still using a 20 year old default ATC. Changing the voices won't help either, how difficult can it be to just do a decent VFR ATC with flight following.

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16 hours ago, pracines said:

I personally use the default ATC for many IFR GA flights and all VFR flights.

I also use the default ATC as background chatter when using Radar Contact 4.3. I use Radar Contact for Airline ( and some long distance GA) IFR, for the ease of use, flexibility, transition ALT/LVL, and Copilot communications as needed. 

It will be nice to hear correct phrasing of every airport name (with a comm. channel), and all the ATC facilities properly spoken, instead of just "center" "control" "approach" "departure". Also all the airline names and added aircraft models spoken. The comparison chart illustrates what's new .

Because I fly all over the world in all kinds of situations, this product is a very useful improvement for my situation.

Paul - i use the same setup you do,  i thought i was the only one doing it this way.   The one annoying extra step that i do take is to request landing from P3d controllers eventhough i'm working  with the RCV4 controllers.  that seems to be the only way to maintain some kind of separation on final.   

I listened to the sample waves, I have to agree that the voices sound a little too robotic for my taste.  But i do  applaud them for putting some effort into the weakest area of flight simming, ATC

Richard

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This may be a touch of rose tinted glasses but some of the best ATC predates P3D by a long way and that was contained in subLogic's Flight Assignment: ATP.

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6 hours ago, Christopher Low said:

I use default ATC, and I think that the voices are very realistic. I just wish that the P3D development team would look at sorting out a few minor issues.......like the annoying "stop/continue/stop/continue/stop...." messages whenever an AI plane is behind me :angry: It would also be nice to see the AI planes moving a bit faster when they are on a taxiway link just short of a displaced runway threshold. A good example of this is UK2000 Gatwick Xtreme. There are two hold short points for runway 26L at this airport, and the AI planes move sssooooo ssslllloooowwwwlllllyyyy up to the runway threshold from one of them. It offsets the advantage of having two hold short positions for departures. I really do not understand why they move much slower in situations like this than they do on normal taxiways..... :huh:

Agreed. 

I also use the default ATC and must say that despite its obvious bugs it's still pretty darn good compared to the 3rd party payware offerings currently available.  

I continue to hope that either Lockheed Martin or some 3rd party developer will simply offer a fix/improvement to the default ATC.  Maybe it's not so simple, but it seems to me far more laborious to develop an entirely new ATC system like other developers have done, and all of them have major shortcomings IMO.

Dave

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, AnkH said:

I agree with others. While we get an addon for almost everything you can think of and for most planes you could think of flying, an addon for proper ATC is still not really existing or the ones that we have are not really developed any further and support is limited. I wonder why? Is it really that much of an hassle to develop a proper ATC addon? I mean: PMDG reaches only Boeing fans and some more, FSL reaches the Airbus fans, A2A the GA community etc. All developers of most currently available addons somehow still serve a niche inside a niche. With a good ATC addon, you would be one of the few reaching almost all flightsimmer all over the world. The potential market is huge compared to almost any other addon (except weather and global addons). Yet nobody dares to start developing such an addon...

I completely agree. Unfortunately, the ATC part was overshadowed by the development of aircraft and scenarios.
Yet it would be a fundamental addon that would satisfy everyone's needs. In my opinion one of the most successful addons was definitely Radar Contact, 
solid and stable, but unfortunately obsolete and with voices frankly unlistenable nowaday and with the impossibility of controlling ground traffic. 
Unfortunately it was not, and I believe it will never be updated.
We were hoping for a version 5, but unfortunately the developer didn't have the chance to continue. 
Another more recent addon is Pro ATC X but even this seems to me to not manage the ground traffic at its best and, although it has the ability to manage
SID / STARs, it still does not reach the solidity of RC e the ground controlling traffic of default ATC.
Probably the fact that there has not been a solid and updated addon to the state of the art for ATC is the lack of SDK dedicated to this aspect;
 so I hope that P3D can release SDK so that an ATC, worthy of the name, is finally developed.
Edited by riccardo74
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I’ve tried almost all of the atc addons out there and always end up coming back to default.

As for this product I will be curious to see what it does that EVP does not other than different accents.  I do the majority of my flying in North America so the accents aren’t a huge deal for me, especially if they still play randomly rather than based on where your plane is in the world.

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2 hours ago, Slick9 said:

The one annoying extra step that i do take is to request landing from P3d controllers eventhough i'm working  with the RCV4 controllers.  that seems to be the only way to maintain some kind of separation on final.   

I set up STB to separate arrivals 12 NM out and 4 NM apart, that does a pretty good job for the approach phase. It is very rare for me to see constant go arounds. Now to prevent AI from getting a T/O clearance while I'm on final, I set up an FSUIPC hot key (ctrl-3 as a toggle) to freeze ground traffic. I freeze ground traffic about 7-15 miles out depending on back-taxi requirements, then after I touch down I release the ground traffic. 

 

1 hour ago, HighBypass said:

This may be a touch of rose tinted glasses but some of the best ATC predates P3D by a long way and that was contained in subLogic's Flight Assignment: ATP.

Yes I agree, it was very good ATC for its time, but with no AI to contend with, and an instant teleportation feature from the terminal to the runway, made ATC kind of easy.

 

7 hours ago, Christopher Low said:

I use default ATC, and I think that the voices are very realistic. I just wish that the P3D development team would look at sorting out a few minor issues.......like the annoying "stop/continue/stop/continue/stop...." messages whenever an AI plane is behind me :angry: It would also be nice to see the AI planes moving a bit faster when they are on a taxiway link just short of a displaced runway threshold. A good example of this is UK2000 Gatwick Xtreme. There are two hold short points for runway 26L at this airport, and the AI planes move sssooooo ssslllloooowwwwlllllyyyy up to the runway threshold from one of them. It offsets the advantage of having two hold short positions for departures. I really do not understand why they move much slower in situations like this than they do on normal taxiways..... :huh:

There is a conversation in the official P3D forums about this.  Rob McCarthy from LM seems to be interested in at least exploring options of improving P3D ATC. It couldn't hurt to add to the conversation. 

http://www.prepar3d.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=6306&t=133127

_________________________________

I think most flight simmers agree that ATC needs improving. This specific Voice Database from FSAerodata is a step in the right direction as Navdata and AI schedule updates are much more frequent these days for many.  

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I've posted my ATC wish list on the P3D forum.

It's nice to see that the Core Lead developer is involved in the discussion.

Hopefully we'll see improved ATC in the next version of P3D.

Dave 

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Terrible voices. Will be a pass for me.

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One of the reasons the default ATC sounds like an actual person talking is... it was an actual person talking.  Computerized voices still sound artificial.  Won't be on my purchase list.

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Flight Unlimited II & III had the best ATC sounding voices I've ever heard in a flight sim. Too bad it will never be replicated.

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Posted (edited)

I am using default ATC too, in spite of its drawbacks. It is most unfortunate that ALL developers who made attempts to create a realistic ATC were unable (technically or financially or both) to manage reaching the quality level of the original FSX ATC voices. I don't mind having "only" six or seven different voices instead of 120, as long as they sound like in real life. I concur with all the posts above stating how regrettable this is for our hobby, ATC has been neglected by LM and perhaps it's high time something is done about it. Enough of these "cut and paste" sound bites, this is tolerable on an answering machine because you listen to it a few seconds, but not during a three to four-hour flight session. 

FSAerodata is trying hard to make ATC more accurate for our flights, how about going the extra mile and make it "accurate" too for our ears? Yes it will be more costly and require competent handling on the sound recording side, but I too would predict that such a product would sell well! I'd be the first on the buying line...

Edited by Jean-Claude

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Posted (edited)

Talking of "cut and paste" sound bites, this is something that annoys me at times with those EditVoicePack updates for airline callsigns etc. The bit that annoys me is that there are times when some of the voices pronounce the callsign reasonably well, and yet the remaining ones are a bit of a garbled mess. A good example of this would be the "NEPTUNE" callsign that I have installed (West Atlantic UK). A handful of the voices pronounce this as "NEP-TOON" or something similar, which is fine. However, the rest pronounce it something like "@£*&-TOON". In other words, the first part is just unidentifiable nonsense.......and that drives me nuts! In fact, I have decided to change the callsign for a handful of airlines to something completely different (an alternative callsign is better than just a number), simply because I can't stand listening to garbled rubbish.

Edited by Christopher Low

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I still prefer default ATC with Editvoicepack mods. I agree that with some voices it's a challenge to get the name of the airport to sound correct, but it's still user friendly. I hope that LM addresses the ATC bugs and considers improving it in this version of P3D.

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Posted (edited)

Part of the problem is that a third party developer would need to record the 24,991 airport names in the database before you even begin. Then you have all the control centres and the FIR boundary names.

Then you need to record realistic accents for the whole globe. Now, the aviation language is English so this does make life a bit easier as you could lump together the voices of non-native English speakers for a lot of places - Scandinavia, Latin America and the Iberian peninsula, Eastern Europe, huge swathes of the Far East, the Caribbean, the Arab speaking world etc etc. Yes there’s enormous generalising going on but even as a native English speaker I couldn’t tell the difference in accent between a Moroccan speaking in English or a Jordanian from 2500 miles away. 

But then you need to control AI, vector, handle SIDs and STARs, the list goes on. I think it would be an enormous job  

The easiest thing would be to open up the SDK of the existing ATC so that you can add new voices and functionality and give it support for SIDs and STARs etc. But before then you’d need to fix the issue of not being able to direct the sim to use specific runways as with light variable winds, it’s often a crapshoot as to which runway it wants to use. Hence I use the ‘force ATC wind lock’ feature of AS to force a steady wind for planning purposes. 

Edited by Airline2Sim
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