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Geofa

Radar Contact / FSX

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Hopefully this is an appropiate post for this forum...if not please excuse this post.IMO, FSX ATC is less than desireable. I do use VATSIM but it's not always avaliable when I am.I'm considering purchasing RC...To those of you using RC w/FSX would you reccomend it?Reccomendation to run it on a seperate computer or not.Thank you,Vince

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Yes, I recommend it; been using it for years. For the past several years, I have been running it on my WideFS machine to offload my FS-rig as much as possible. WideFS purchase from Pete Dowson required for this type of configuration however. Good luck & enjoy...

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I'd also recommend it for much more realism. My only complaint is that with 2 sound cards, all the RC output comes from the default speakers. There is no easy way to direct it to the headset in XP. There is one other addon that is supposed to do this but I find that it screws up my sound settings.As of last contact, the developers have no plans to change that behavior.Other than that, I love the programQ6600 G0 CPU 2.4 o/c 3.65Evga 680i A1 with P31 BIOS 2G XP2-8500 DDR2 1066FSB Mushkin 996535 RAM 5-5-4-12-2T320G 7200 HD partitioned for XP/Vista/Programs 2 - 74G Raptors in RAID0 500G 7200 HD for backup SATA DVD burner Evga 8800GTS 640 PCIx 169.13 betaKandalf LCS case w/ built in liquid cooling 850W Thermaltake power supplyVisit the Virtual Pilot's Centerwww.flightadventures.comhttp://www.hifisim.com/banners/hifi-supporter-sigbanner.jpg

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I use to use RC. The Downside to RC is there is no ground control. It will assign you to the runway AI is using, although you can override that I think if I remember correctly. It's up to you how you get there. It also doesn't know what gate to park at, but you can predefine one that it will remember in it's flight setup screen. There is no guarantee though, that an AI aircraft won't be parked there when you get there. So you need to know the charts for the airport. I had one other problem in the FSX version, but could never get an answer whether the problem was more widespread, or just me. While RC did respond to AI traffic, to contact new frequencies. I never heard any altitude change instructions to AI. It did give your aircraft these instructions, and it also worked for AI traffic in the FS2004 version. I lost my copy when my system melted down, and never really got into it again, now I use default, modified with FS Editvoicepack. There is also VOXATC which I just tried the demo. I had to repeat my responses for every instruction, which I think is just the training phase, in time, that would happen less and less. It does handle ground traffic, for both you and AI, but it does it, by completely replacing your AI with it's own using the aircraft you have used in your current stock and places them in the airports your flightplans define, but not necessarily according to realistic schedules. Like default it does use a slider to define how much AI you want. 100% is much more than you have now!!

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I have VoxATC as well. I really do enjoy it, although I have had a few small issues with it. The plus is that you get to speak out your ATC dialog. VoxATC is simple to use, and provides good prompts for how to interact with ATC. I do have to repeat myself a few times, but it doesn't happen all that often as long as I use the default configurations. I like the advanced AT&T voices the Deluxe FSX version of the product ships with, as they are superior to the synthesized voices VoxATC used to have. Jeff ShylukAssistant Managing EditorSenior Staff ReviewerAVSIM

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I'm a long time user of Radar Contact in FS9 and now in FSX. First, understand that RC4 is IFR only - it does not support VFR. Next, you do lose taxi guidance - RC4 will tell you what runway to go to, but not how to get there. When you land, it tells you to taxi to the gate, but not which gate or how to get there.As far as taxi guidance, I use the map from FSNAV in FS9, but in FSX, I simply use the overhead view to plan my taxi path. I don't find it to be a problem.As far as the ATC functions, Rc4 is vastly superior to the default. You can do SIDs, step climbs, almost any kind of instrument approach, emergency procedures, etc. Most ILS approaches are vectored closer in than the default and AI traffic is ususally cleared (very few go arounds) you can choose to do holding or not.My only complaint is that RC4 sometimes clears you to intercept the localizer before you are in range to receive it (you can use the atc window info to figure when to start your turn). The only thing I can think of that would be better is VATSIM, where you interact with a live controller.Dale

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Thanks for all the replies....looks like I'll give RC4 a shot.Vince

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Each time a post on this subject arises everyone has their personal preference. I agree that different type ATC programs can give different results but when I see comparisons being made that are not accurate then we must give credit where credit is due.Each ATC system available including VATSIM has its strengths and weaknesses but we should be careful when saying one is vastly superior to the FS9/FSX default. In most cases the default ATC system of FS9/FSX has not be explored to its fullest and then ends up getting the short end of the stick in these post. That can be misleading for too many Users and I encouage everyone to push the limits of the FS ATC system before making comparisons.Examples of a Payware ATC system vs FS ATC SystemPayware ATC says SIDS. You can program any SID into the default FS Flightplan and execute the SID on departure as per ATC vectors to the entrance of the SID.Payware ATC says step climbs. You can set your initial FP altitude to whatever you want then start asking ATC for step climbs (multiple increments in 1000's) until reaching your final enroute altitude.Payware ATC says almost any kind of instrument approach. FS allows and ATC vectors your plane for every single published approach as per Jeppesen plates based on cutoff dates.Payware says emergency procedures. If you set up random failures on a FP in FS then you have the option to divert your destination through the ATC system and land as soon as possible.Payware ATC says you can choose to do holding or not. There are 1000's of inbound holding patterns built into FSX that ATC will honor on request. You must know how to ask ATC for these Transitions with holding patterns. Once in a holding pattern you can stay there as long as needed (weather related or altitude to high for the IAF final).Payware says most ILS approaches are vectored closer in than the default. Not sure what this means. FS uses a FAF for any ILS approach code written in the database that says the plane on a IFR FP will be vectored on a 30 degree offset to final just outside this Terminal_Waypoint. Some of the approach code is used for the User plane and some is used for the AI Plane.Contrary to popular belief FS9/FSX uses a .dll seperation code for all Planes that are being vectored to the outside of the FAF (IFR FP) if a ILS approach code exist. The standard seperation in FS is 7 miles but other type AI Planes on approach do not have FDE's as a standard for approach speeds based on many different AI Plane modelers and non standards. We end up penalizing the ATC system of FS when the root of the problem is 3rd party.If no ILS Approach code exist and weather is VMC then FS ATC uses a set of hard code .dll values to vector a plane to a fake FAF and standard 2000 ft AGL altitude when it takes ownership of a runway.VFR FP/VMC conditions uses a different set of .dll rules. This is just a few examples but I also see many continue to ask about STAR arrivals into a Terminal Airport area. In order to understand STAR's you have to study Country's. Many Country borders are small and a STAR maybe nothing more then a Terminal approach procedure (EHAM's ARTIP, RIVER, and SUGOL STAR's). However these type STAR's can be requested and flown all the way to the IAF for the final of any runway at EHAM under the watchful eye of ATC.In the USA STAR's can start at 400 NM from a airport. In some of my readmes for enhanced airports found here on AVSIM I explain how to file a STAR arrival that starts 400 NM's from an airport that ATC honors and then once inbound how to Transition to a Terminal Procedure approach based on wind direction and then lastly fly to the IAF for final all in control of the FS default ATC system.We know that the ATC system for FSX was not enhanced much from the previous version of FS9 but there is still a lot that can be explored that many never knows exist or use.

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Thank you Jim for the excellent response. A couple of problems that I have with FS ATC is for example..KORD / KDTW I get passed around from one freq to the next within the center for no apparent reason other than I suspect it's done so just to give some interaction Within 80 miles or less from KDTW I get passed off to Flint tower only to be instructed to go back to Center, back and forth for what I believe no reason other than what I stated earlier. When flying a longer flight it's a bit annoying to have to constantly check in with the same center..I have no idea if this is real life or not but I find it a bit annoying. And if you ignore it your ATC is canceled.I do however like the way FS ATC does the decent and the way it vectors me to the ILS RWY. I do use Vatsim also (limited) but its not always available when/where I am. One poster recommended an ATC where it actually listens to your responses, I checked out the site, watched the video, but the ATC sounded to "robotic" and it seemed a bit complicated. I imagine like you say there's positives and negatives to everything...just trying to make it more real...Thanks again,Vince

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Keep in mind that airspace is very complex. In your example above-since you mention it, (this is the area I fly in)-you are usually handed off to Flint approach -then to Detroit Approach-and then several different Detroit approach freqs-if at a specific altitude. However get above a certain altitude and Cleveland center controls that airspace-just north of Flint is Saginaw approach-but just north of it Minneapolis center handles down quite low -Lansing approach to the west. You can look at an ifr sectional and will see who controls what. Here is something I pulled off the web:"Sectors have horizontal, vertical, and time boundaries.For example, a simple sector at an airfield may extend out to 10 miles from the airfield and from the ground to a height of 10,000 feet. It is may be open from 06:00 to 22:00.Most Sectors are in a complicated environment: they may be next to, above, or below other sectors. The boundary between sectors may be horizontal, vertical, or both. Different ATC units may control adjacent sectors."Now where I have found the problem in fsx/fs9 is when doing practice approaches-often fs will detect that you have crossed a barrier when in reality the local controller would be handling all. For instance-if you do practice approaches at Flint in the sim-you may be handed back and forth between Flint and Detroit-where as in reality Flint would control the whole approach. So I have found the boundries for xcross country flights actually pretty good-it is in doing approaches where it doesn't always work right. Considering the complication though I think it does a pretty good job of this. It isn't done for interaction-the sim has a database of sectors-perhaps not as complicated as the real thing but somewhat close. With that in mind-I haven't found a perfect atc yet. They all do certain things well, and others perhaps not. But considering atc is dynamic and has live personalities it is awfully hard to simulate.http://www.mediafire.com/imgbnc.php/1b5baf...b9f427f694g.jpgMy blog:http://geofageofa.spaces.live.com/

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