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Socata TB20GT Final Beta Available!

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We are pleased to announce that the Socata TB20GT "Final Beta" is now available at:http://catholic-hymns.com/frbill/FS2002_Pi..._T20_Panel.htmlWe cordially invite all our friends in this forum to participate in the "Final Beta Testing." It is our hope to have this new GA ready for public release on November 15th.Please make note of the following:1) The panel and gauges are completed. Some polishing of the 3d panel artwork must be done, but I'm not going to be making any changes to the panel layout, instrument sizes or window arrangements... :) There are a few gauges on the 'knee panels' that haven't had the 3d backlighting installed yet. The VC gauge lighting is tied to the landing light switch, so you must leave it on at night (if you want to see that is!).2) We are particularly interested in how the package installs, the clarity of the "readme.txt" and ancilliary documents, and how the flight dynamics behave.3) We are interested in the frame rates on your system(s).4) There will be a full color, 10 page, printable checklist available in the release version, but it is not yet ready for this Final Beta.5) I will be creating entirely new mapping for the fuselage textures, and cleaning up some 'green artifacts' that seem to have crept into the wing textures.6) A very special THANKS is due to 'odog,' who graciously stepped in and supplied the windshield at the last minute!Muchas Gracias!!!

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Hello Bill,I am downloading it as we speak. I will take it for a test ride and tell you how it has been. A big thank you for letting us Beta test it for you.Take care,Udo.:-wave

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Well, tested her out, and the characteristics are good. Just my opinion, since I am not a real pilot. Some remarks, I have included some shots for you. You may have to turn down the Alpha a bit. The paint looks chrome instead of white. One picture is with reflection off and one on. You can see the difference. Also for highlight try these values : 50,100,0.2. Also I expected a bit more reaction in pitch, since the elevator is rather big. The frame rates are good on my Amd 1200 mhz with GF3-200. Very smooth. Take care,Udo.:-wave

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>Well, tested her out, and the characteristics are good. Just >my opinion, since I am not a real pilot. Some remarks, I >have included some shots for you. You may have to turn down >the Alpha a bit. The paint looks chrome instead of white. >One picture is with reflection off and one on. You can see >the difference. Also for highlight try these values : >50,100,0.2. Also I expected a bit more reaction in pitch, >since the elevator is rather big. The frame rates are good >on my Amd 1200 mhz with GF3-200. Very smooth. Yikes! Somewhere along the line, my "Reflections" option got turned off! No wonder I didn't see any difference with or without the Alpha channel, and my 'chrome spinner' didn't really look very 'chromy!' :)I've redone the Alpha channels and will put the files on the server in a few minutes, and update the "Final Beta" with the new textures. Thanks for the information.The owner of the 'real life prototype' was complaining about too rapid pitch changes, so we've lowered the elevator effectiveness in an attempt to keep it more in line with the real deal.I get good frame rates here (for me at least!) of about 13,18 fps on an antique PIII/850 w/512 MB RAM & a 64 MB ATI Rage Fury Pro card.The model is huge, but part of that is because the [interior] is 'autogenerated' and not selectively created. The Release Version will be more carefully created to eliminate the unneeded bits and pieces on the [interior] section.Thanks for the feedback. Here are a couple of screen shots with the toned down Alpha channel(s):

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Replacement textures that reduce the Alpha channel reflectivity are available on the website for those who've already d/l'ed the Final Beta version 2.0 posted last night. It is a very small (49KB) zipped file, cleverly called:http://catholic-hymns.com/frbill/FS2002_So...nt_textures.zipThe complete package will be updated in about an hour for those who haven't d/l'ed it yet...I've also got to fix the nosewheel steering, somehow the animation was lost... Fortunately, my habit of saving important parts as separate .gmax files will make this easy... :)

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I downloaded the Socata--on a dial-up, no less!Looks great. I could only see a few issues, and they are texture related...The door frame doesn't match the rest of the fuse color. Well, it does, but in twilight, one side looks bright and the other dark, and then it doesn't match. My suggestion... Make the doorframe and the area bordering the windows the same as the fuse color. I tried this the other night, and it gave the Socata a very clean look. But I couldn't do it for the door frame, as that seems to pick up an internal color as opposed to the colors from the bitmap.Only other thing I noticed, again in twilight, is just forward of the firewall on side the engine cowling, about even with the bottom of the windshield, the texture takes on a bit of a "Dented" look. Everything else is top notch. I could almost feel the fabric of the seats, it looked that real. And the cockpit is amazing. Great job--worth the download on my dial-up!-John

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Thanks for the feedback, John!>The door frame doesn't match the rest of the fuse color. >Well, it does, but in twilight, one side looks bright and >the other dark, and then it doesn't match. My suggestion... >Make the doorframe and the area bordering the windows the >same as the fuse color. I tried this the other night, and >it gave the Socata a very clean look. But I couldn't do it >for the door frame, as that seems to pick up an internal >color as opposed to the colors from the bitmap.This is a very difficult problem to solve, and one which has thus far eluded an effective solution. Unfortunately, I cannot do what you suggest, because if you look closely at the attached image, you'll notice that because of the 'wrap around bonded glass,' the window frames are all internal, with the glass covering them! I've been trying to texture the 'frames' grey to match the tinted glass as much as possible, but it's a real '#####' to get right.I'm going to try a new texture mapping technique I've mastered, which allows me to select the precise polys for each color group, and apply a unique Material ID # to the group. Then when I develop the UVW maps, I can be more exact with placement, color and detail. For example, if you look around in the VC, you will notice the crisp and precise lines where the headliner fabric meets the 'plastic' side panels.I'm also going to use the same technique to remap the doors as well.>Only other thing I noticed, again in twilight, is just >forward of the firewall on side the engine cowling, about >even with the bottom of the windshield, the texture takes on >a bit of a "Dented" look.I've found that area and 'fixed it.' One vertex was .001" off from where it needed to be... :) Thanks! >Everything else is top notch. I could almost feel the >fabric of the seats, it looked that real. And the cockpit >is amazing. Great job--worth the download on my dial-up! My 'graphics artist' seems to have gone AWOL, so I've been forced to try my own hand at doing the bitmaps. I'm no good at creating anything out of whole cloth (pun intended!), but I'm pretty good at 'borrowing' stuff when needed... :)I've fixed quite a few problems, and have just today created new textures for the VC Yokes, added the Astrotech LC-2 timer to the pilots's VC yoke, and 'illuminated' it for night flying. I've also redone the artwork for the VC panel to fix some 'bad' corners where the original artwork didn't match the upper rounded corners of the P1 and P2 consoles.Now, I am interested in hearing how well (or poorly!) it is running on your system. Odog reports that he's having a struggle with fps under Win XP. I consistently get between 12-15 fps on my antique PIII/850, which is on a par with the default C172, so I'm more than a bit concerned about it not doing well on Odog's computer, especially considering that it's at least three times faster than mine!Also of great concern to me is how I'm going to deliver an update only to those who've already got the most recent beta. I think that I'm going to create a separate update package and put it on my server for you folks to d/l. There's no point in making you d/l the sounds, etc. again!Thanks again for the feedback!

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I have a P3/800.... I did notice a greater fps impact than some a/c, but I'm not sure why. From in the cockpit or VC, there's no impact, which is normal for every aircraft I've flown. In external view, w/reflections on, I get about 12... With them off, about 18,19.... Most aircraft I get 22-25 w/reflections off (Flight1's 421 serves as a good example) in external view, and 15-18 reflections on.I noted your comment about the wraparound glass. I have seen some Socata shots w/o it. It looks nicer with it.... Hope you get that one figured out.The V/C cabin looks so comfy, I want to take a nap there.I am eager to see where this project ends up... I suspect it will rank among the top freeware GA releases of the year.... -John

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>I have a P3/800.... I did notice a greater fps impact than >some a/c, but I'm not sure why. From in the cockpit or VC, >there's no impact, which is normal for every aircraft I've >flown. In external view, w/reflections on, I get about >12... With them off, about 18,19.... Oh, so our systems are practically identical in specs and performance. I'm using a 64MB ATI Rage Fury Pro video card, and 512MB SDRAM on an Intel PIII/850. I get about the same fps as you then... No surprise there! :)>Most aircraft I get 22-25 w/reflections off (Flight1's 421 >serves as a good example) in external view, and 15-18 >reflections on.I've also managed to 'kill' a whole bunch of unneeded polys, by redoing the control surfaces and the landing gear. They look just as nice, but I've manage to shave about 4k polys so far. I'm aiming to cut it down to about 30k total, from 45k as it is in the Final Beta!>I noted your comment about the wraparound glass. I have >seen some Socata shots w/o it. It looks nicer with it.... >Hope you get that one figured out. Now you know the major spotting distinction between the TB20 and the TB20GT (Generation Two)! :)>The V/C cabin looks so comfy, I want to take a nap there. >>I am eager to see where this project ends up... I suspect >it will rank among the top freeware GA releases of the >year.... Well, I don't know about that! From what I've seen there isn't a whole lot of interest among most simmers for light GA aircraft. They mostly seem to "wanna go fast and BIG..." I will proudly admit though, that this is one of the nicest, cleanest and sharpest VC's I've ever seen among any freeware releases.Thanks again!

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Looks Great bill I am going to get it later tonight and then I am going to realy test the airframe the engine and avionics to

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