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sudden changes in visibility

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I decided I was going to repost what Damian Clark (author of the AS weather addon) wrote on the subject of visibility issues in FS9 (on Avsim's AS forum) hoping some of those (serious) shortcoming can be fixed in FSX. It is so well argued that for the record I decided to include his post in its entirety. First, with default AS options, vis graduation is enabled which will clear your visibility based on altitude and cloud layers as you climb up to the max visibility setting.The main problem is that when visibility transitions above the 9.9sm mark, several changes in depiction occur (by FS9): 1) The sky color goes from grey to blue, 2) The horizonal visibility "mask band" is lifted, showing much more forward visibility and, related to 2, 3) The actual depiction of visibility appears to grow greatly without linearity (i.e. it appears to go from 9sm to 20sm in one step). Same thing happens in reverse when going below the 9.9sm mark.We've provided a solution to issue #1, the sky color, by including the "Day Smooth Horizon" sky color sets. These have much less color transition between the visibility levels. What it results in is a blueish fog but as vis clears the transition is much less obvious.Unfortunately #2 and #3 cannot be addressed (by us) as this is part of the weather/graphics depiction code within FS9. It would require modifications that are beyond the scope of the FS license agreement (i.e. disassembly and low-level modification of internal FS exe and .dll files, and subsequent re-distribution of such modified files).As to depicting a cloud layer to represent visibility, this IS done via AS "Fog Layer Generation" feature (optional). When vis is less than 3SM a cumulus (or sometimes stratus) layer will be drawn. Unfortunately, depicting such cloud layers with higher vis ends up being quite unrealistic. I.e. do you want a solid cumulus deck obscuring the ground when skies reported clear but vis 8sm?We are all hoping that FSX has a much better visibility rendering system and either makes things great by default, or at least enables us to provide a better 3rd-party solution. It is obvious that it is a very popular "gripe" about FS9 weather and I'm pretty sure the FS development team is well aware of this and will do what they can to improve things within their capability. Whatever happens, we will continue our ongoing effort to provide to the best, most realistic weather and sky experience, using whatever new technologies, tools or techniques are available to us. The visibility issue has pretty much been our #1 priority for improvement for well oer a year now. It's so far resulted in the many visibility handling options you now see in ASv6 including visibility Graduation, Depict FS9 Haze Layer, minimum and maximum visibility limits, fog layer generation, and use FSUIPC vis smoothing as well as the new Day Smooth Horizon sky color sets. It is clear that users have many different expectations and tastes when it comes to this, so our options and textures hopefully allow an acceptable interim compromise despite the limitations we are up against.Michael J.http://www.precisionmanuals.com/images/forum/pmdg_744F.jpghttp://sales.hifisim.com/pub-download/asv6-banner-beta.jpg

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Hi,Here is a follow-up post that explains a little more how this problem occurs based on altitude with ActiveSky due to graduation and/or smoothing: http://forums.avsim.net/dcboard.php?az=sho..._id=25598&page=The instant 9.9sm shift does not occur with default FS9 when climbing(instead it instantly shifts to maximum when climbing above the visibility ceiling/layer). To clarify, the improvement we are hoping for includes making the transitions between all visibilities linear and smooth, without sudden shifts in depiction at specific visibilities (i.e. 9.9sm, 29.9sm, 59.9sm, etc.). This would enable add-ons like ActiveSky and/or FSUIPC to implement visibility smoothing in much beter way. Of course, internal FSX horizontal wx zone-based visibility smoothing would be nice too :) While we're wishing, we would also like to see "update" smoothing in visibility, winds, barometic pressure, cloud formations and temperature. This way the weather can be updated within the local visibile range of the aircraft without any sudden unrealistic depiction changes.Best,

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Guest Fjorko

Yes, this issue is near and dear to my heart as well. I would also like to see this fixed in FSX.....SMOOTH Visibility changes please, both horizontal and vertical.EDIT: Actually I just came across this blog : If you read the "Wheather or Not" article, you will at least see that the FSX team are aware of the things that can be improved in the weather, but that they are not yet in a position to TELL us which will be fixed and which not - see here :https://blogs.technet.com/hal9000/default.aspxThanks

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Well, I put my 2 cents in...A few weeks ago I sent an e-mail to the MS FS Team's suggestion box about this very issue.And we're probably right, tdragger and Pixelpoke probably have read this , but really can't respond meaningfully at this time. That's the great thing...they have probably READ it. You can't say the same about the process back with FS98, FS2000, etc. The "thanks" thread above is right on...Rhett

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