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Jeppessen SIMCharts? Are they any good?

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I am considering getting the SIMCHarts for FSX, I am wondering has anybody got them and are they any good?

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I have purchased the simcharts subscription and for me I think it is a very solid value, but that's for me. Me: I'm a former airline pilot/flight instructor and instrument flying is my forte. I love to have the legit (allbeit outdated-they don't want people using these for rl flight$) Jepp plates in front of me when flying into an airport. If you were to try to acquire all these on paper they would probably fill up a volume 6 ft. long and cost who knows what. The only thing they don't offer with their new version is enroute charts. They say fsx uses jepp enroute info so it's not "neccessary" To purchase jet airway charts for the country wouldn't be that expensive...To purchase low enroute charts for the whole country would cost a few bucks. I wish I had the airway charts but I really like Simcharts.

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I prefer the charts from www.navigraph.com, which are also cheaper and include all the AIRAC data for different add ons in your subscription.

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You can purchase some (paper) maps as mentioned. I did. I I really enjoy them, keeping in mind that real world changes happen post the release of the latest FS version and unless you update (as in a "add on" created to add new runways ect... or in a few cases corrections from errors in the latest FS version release)then there may be changes to note on you maps. I have the Terminal Charts for areas I really enjoy (I even got a binder which for me is nice as to not be popping up extra windows ect...), a large map that is two sided (one half USA ((this is where I live thus sim the most)) on one side and the other half on the back, and to complement the Terminal charts I mentioned I purchased the Sectionals that go with cooresponding areas I enjoy the most.I would like to mention that the "Sectional Aeronautical Charts" ie as in say the Denver "Sectional" are a good value if you want to start slow. These a really grat to view say on a table (with your favorite Beverage) as they really offer a huge view of a specific area and to me bring into focus the area in detial as you would see from a window of a VFR aircraft.NOw that said you can go to the FAA web site and print Terminal Charts free. Keep in mind that there a some difference in Jeppesen Charts and the FAA (I think its FAA.GOV) ((also the different Handbooks area posted here as well))but these differences seem to be getting less. Also, on the Jeppesen web site there is an article posted about a year ago that shows you there latest changes and a guide to what the differnt views and symbols mean.Please keep in mind I still enjoy looking a maps spread over a table top or in my case for simming they are laminated and placed on the wall around my simming pc. There is nothing at all wrong with viewing all over web sites and the like. By the time I print out any carts and or maps I dont find a huge price difference. Plus I do get lazy, LOL. The Terminal Charts from the faa.gov site are free and I can see the saving there, although I puchased from Jeppesen I just wanted to share the little bit I know. People also purchase the FAA Terminals from places like Sportys Pilot shop. What most dont know is that our friends in Denver (Jeppesen) actually print the Terminals for the FAA. Maybe thats why the printed charts for purchase are seen as a bit higher in quality and "user friendly" that the Terminals from the FAA. There was an article in t on of the PC Siim Magazines that pointed out to get your Private Pilot Lic you will "need to learn the FAA charts but if you want to fly for an airline you need to expect to use Jeppesen Charts" or somthing close to tis quote.The easiest way to tell which brand of charts are being used say for example when watching movies (like tonight in North America "Air Force One" the FAA charts have four rings that bind the lose leaf pages on the top and Jeppesen Terminal charts have a seven ring binding system for the lose leaf pages down the side. This is for at least the lower 48 United States. I am note sure but think for Alaska the paper back books that are glued from the top are the same from either the FAA or Jeppesen. "Note sure about this one but think thats it".In other words all though avalible from the PC (web or saved folder) I also enjoy the hard copies, especally the "Sectional Maps", Try just on eof these if you wish from Jeppesen or where ever (I think we are talking $8.00 US dollars or so)agian to me this gives me the big picture in a nice formate. Lastly, keep in mind that there are relase dates every so many days for the different products. You might benifit from going to the different web sites and or calling the reapective 88 numbers.I hope this helps a bit. Thank you.Mark.System:OS:MS Windows XP Professional, Ver 2002 Service Pack 2 Hardware:Intel Pentium® 4 CPU 2.802.84 GHz, 3.00 GB of RAM Radeon X1600 Pro 512MB running a 21/19.6 Sony Flat Screen Tubed Monitorand a 17/16 NEC/Mitsubishi Tubed MonitorGeForce FX 5200 128MB running a NEC/Mitsubishi 18 Flat Panel

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cool, thanks for the input I think I'll check them both out

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Marketing shill disclaimer: Jeppesen is a close partner of ours (Microsoft's). One of the nice things about their SimCharts line is the fact that the navigation data comes from the same source and, more importantly, the same date as what we ship in Flight Sim. Granted, frequencies and procedures don't change dramatically all the time, but they do change in real life. And until and unless we start updating the FS nav database, having charts that match our data makes a lot of sense. If I weren't working on FS, I'd still buy and enjoy SimCharts. - Hal

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For US flyers, the best option is to order a Digital Terminal Procedures DVD from the FAA's NACO site. $13.50 gets you a complete set of US (including AK/HI) approach plates, SIDs, STARs, Airport Diagrams, and Charted VFR procedures (in native .pdf format, not scans of paper products), along with a nice viewer utility that works sorta like an electronic flight bag for your PC.http://naco.faa.gov/ecomp/ProductDetails.aspx?ProductID=DTPPFrom what I read about Jeppesen SimCharts 4.0, it's $60 for a time-limited (1-year) access to a set of worldwide approach charts. Not sure what happens after your year from the purchase date is up, but the idea of a pricey time-limited subscription to already outdated nav charts is, well, goofy.If you get a NACO DVD now, it'll still be pretty close to the database used to build FSX and the price is pretty reasonable. International flyers have fewer good options available, I'm afraid.Also, all of the current US approach plates are available free from the NACO site...but it's nice to have them instantly available from the HDD.I ordered a cycle 0509 NACO disk 18 months ago at the same time Garmin updated the GNS530 database in the trainer software used by the RealityXP GNS530, so I have approach plates that match the database in the RXP530. That's useful.RegardsBob ScottATP IMEL Gulfstream II-III-IV-VSantiago de Chile

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Jep's simcharts make no sense to me. You are buying an already 3yrs out of date set of charts, and it will only work for one year! After that you have to pony up another $60, for even more out of date data.If you want something very convenient, but payware, Navigraph is a much better deal, the charts are a little different style, but you get used to it.For the US & Canada there are plentiful free sources, as well as for a number of European countries. There are lists of freeware sources worldwide as well.All of these are UP-TO-DATE, unlike SimCharts.* Orest

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The only reason simcharts are out of date is because they are protecting their real life approach plate business and I can tell you those suckers aren't cheap. When using a SIM an outdated chart is of very little concern. In real-life aviation I trained with jepp plates, i instructed with jepp plates, I was also supplied with jepp plates with the airline.They are the standard and that's a fact. In my world there is no substitute for jepp plates, but that's me. So I can say if you want jepp plates which are the best plates, then simcharts is a good value. 60 dollars wouldn't even give you an hour in a real 172. It would also probably buy you 2 states worth of real jepp approach plates. And if you are psycho you can print out every lovin' plate if you don't want to subscribe the next year. But that's A LOT of plates!However, sectional and enroute charts would be nice and simcharts does not offer that. Although I can't think of any suitable digital substitute for the real thing since they are so friggin huge and colorful. At least I don't have the printer for it. I only have a b/w laser printer.

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I agree, it's a pretty good value for a world-wide set of charts. I think making it a subscription keeps the initial cost down (if you don't like it, you don't have to buy it again), and it gives them a continual revenue stream and incentive to keep offering the product.As Hal and another poster noted, having up to date charts isn't much help in FS. There's a not remote chance you'll be setting the wrong frequency somewhere.Don't forget that Matt Fox has created digital versions of all the sectionals of the U.S., and terminal charts, and they're right here in the library.http://library.avsim.net/search.php?CatID=...&Go=Change+ViewAlso, I suggest checking out his website for lots of other cool data, including a downloadable sectional overlay for Google Earth (scroll down a bit, dated Dec 26, and Dec 13 2006 for some good info and the latest overlays)http://www.topomaps.fox-fam.com/and even a compilation of FSX tweaks (outdated at this point but still relevant)http://www.fox-fam.com/wordpress/?page_id=41Thomas[a href=http://www.flyingscool.com] http://www.flyingscool.com/images/Signature.jpg [/a]I like using VC's :-)N15802 KASH '73 Piper Cherokee Challenger 180

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Just a reminder for those who like the real thing for flight Simulation...drop by your local FBO and get to know a friendly charter pilot... If he is already a good friend then you are in good shape because he will have boxes of enroute charts and plates that he will ask you to haul off because he just received his newest cycle :-) :-)

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It depends what you sim-fly, and how. If you stay strictly within FSX and use FSX "ATC", then Simcharts may work fine.If you are flying on a network like VATSIM, you will be quite behind the curve, and constantly asking for vectors. VATSIM ATC will be right up to date. That is how I fly, so for me Simcharts is of little value.* Orest

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