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  1. I found them. Then I lost them again.
  2. I'm just in the (long) process of reinstalling my FS9 setup. I'm looking for some liveries for the Fifty North 737 which I'm absolutely 100% certain I had at the end of 2016 but didn't backup (I know, my bad). I spent pretty much the entire evening yesterday trying to locate these liveries on multiple sites with file libraries but had no luck. The ones I'm looking for are: Fifty North 737-300 Easyjet Fifty North 737-300 Delta Colors In Motion/Deltaflot livery Fifty North 737-300 & -500 United white/blue pre-Continental merger livery If anybody has these liveries or can point me to where I can find them I'd be very grateful. BTW, I know HJG have recently released a really nice 737 Classic model. At some point I'll have to try and merge it with the Wilco/FT 737 Classic panel, but at the moment the HJG model is quite new and is missing lots of liveries until the painters catch up.
  3. The Tu-95 *is* a contemporary of the B-52. The two aircraft are very close in performance - the B-52 has a marginally faster cruise speed, but the Tu-95 has a little bit more range and payload. The current version in service is the Tu-95MS which was built from 1981-93. As such the Bears you see the Russians flying today are actually a lot newer than any of the USAF B-52H. The Tu-95MS is a cruise missile carrier. Depending on the specific sub-model they can carry up to 16 Kh-55 cruise missiles which can carry a conventional or nuclear warhead up to 200kt and have a range of 1,600nm. Some of the Bears can carry the Kh-101 and Kh-102 which are low observable (stealth) versions of the Kh-55. Lots of people look at the Bear and see the props and think it's just an old piece of junk. It's not.
  4. @OP Do you have one of the laptops that have an integrated graphics card *and* a discrete graphics card? You know the ones that switch between low power consumption/heat integrated graphics for basic tasks and then switch in the high power/heat discrete card for games? If so you might want to check FSX is actually running on the discrete card and not the integrated. I've had this before on my laptop when the Nvidia software failed to recognise FSX as requiring the discrete card and would start it using the integrated card.... at 5fps. You can use the Nvidia settings in the Control Panel to force FSX (or any other application) to use the discrete graphics card.
  5. Precisely. Which ties back in with the comments I've made in the thread in Hangar Chat about flight sim development now being driven largely by the concerns of the professional training segment of the market. This is the road we are now going down and it's not one I think is going to be a good thing for the future of the hobby.
  6. I'd like to get it, but I have a pro license so I'm locked out by VRS. It's a shame really because the Super Hornet is an extremely well crafted addon, so much so I could maybe, possibly just swallow forking out another $110 for it. Alas, as I've been told so many times, the lack of an entertainment license for P3D is a non-issue and stuff like this isn't a problem because it won't happen.
  7. Just had a look at the product page at Simmarket - it does indeed look intersting. From what I can gather the "mosaic" technique allows them to give the illusion of higher resolution textures, but at the cost of having a grid pattern which is painfully evident in the urban textures. You might be able to get away with this in perhaps a North American city, but for older European cities it looks very artificial.
  8. Er no, the Telegraph is not a tabloid but a broadsheet, one of the more respectable newspapers in the UK.
  9. Unfortunately, like so many recent conflicts the western media is presenting a horribly simplistic and one sided version of what's happening in Ukraine. People are happy to lap this up because it feeds their world view and sometimes prejucides. Suffice to say perhaps it might be worthwhile going to ask the 60% of Crimeans who are of Russian descent exactly who they think the "bad guys" are. I'd like to write more, but I know Avsim isn't the place for this kind of discussion.
  10. Thanks for the insight, interesting stuff. The Tornado's performance in the first Gulf War has been something of a controversy in the UK. The Tornado was conceived as an aircraft that would penetrate Warsaw Pack air defences at low altitude and high speed, day or night, in any weather to attack targets behind the front lines. The RAF in particular intended to use its aircraft to attack Warsaw Pack air bases. This same role was given to the RAF Tornados in Desert Storm. When the RAF told the USAF that it was going to attack at low altitude and use the JP233 submunition to take out the Iraqi runways the reaction from the USAF was something along the lines of "YGBSM!" Iraq was flat and featureless, lacking the opportunities for terrain masking. The USAF advised the RAF against attacking from low level, but the RAF pressed on and five aircraft were lost in low level attacks before the RAF switched to medium level attacks. To this day the decision - insistence even - of attacking from low altitude in such flat and featureless terrain in the teeth of such heavy defences remains very controversial. The interesting thing is that even now the US is still the biggest defence spender by a very large margin. The US defence budget is mind boggling - it's equivalent of the next ELEVEN biggest defence spending nations COMBINED. The entire USAF could be disbanded tomorrow, and just with the remaining assets of the USN and USMC the US would still retain the most powerful and capable air force in the world. An observation on my part - again, with all due respect and no offence intended - is that many Americans are absolutely convinced that they have to retain this massive military machine at any cost. It's hard for me to understand how you guys have got your knickers in such a twist over healthcare reform yet don't seem to even bat an eyelid at spending nearly 700 BILLION dollars on defence when no other country could even dream of spending that much. US defence spending could be cut massively and still retain a world class military, whilst at the same time plowing all that extra money into national infrastructure or public services. The climate of profligous defence spending is exactly how you're now stuck with the F-35 - an aircraft that is 160 billion dollars over budget and seven years late. It's how things like F-22, B-2, SSN-21 and DDG-1000 have all happened - massively expensive weapons programmes that have cost the American taxpayer astronomical sums of money. These words from President Eisenhower were absolutely prescient: As FSCamp correctly points out, Finland was never in NATO. I don't know how your history is but you may or may not be aware that the Soviet Union actually invaded Finland in 1939. The ensuing Winter War was one of the most heroic and extraordinary military actions where the Finns exacted a very heavy toll on the invading Soviets and forced them to sue for peace. This was actually on of the things that convinced Adolf that he could defeat the Red Army during Operation Barbarossa in 1941. Finland spent the Cold War in a position of armed neutrality.
  11. It's extremely unlikely the US or NATO will get into a shooting war over Ukraine. You are correct though, an A-10 would be pretty vulnerable against modern Russian forces if it tried to get down in the weeds like its original mission demanded. The Russians have had well over three decades to come up with air defence systems to counter the A-10. That's pretty much the crux of my entire argument. As I explained above, the kind of AA units I'm talking about are self contained, embedded, organic to the ground forces they are designed to accompany into battle. They're not going to be taken out in the initial wave of SEAD strikes - they're going to stay passive and wait until an aircraft is foolish enough to get into the heart of their engagement envelope. Unless you've got a way of detecting and identifying individual air defence units embedded in the ground forces, and then attack them from outside their engagement envelope you're going to have problems. Ironically, the F-35 with its sensor suite is better placed to do this than any current platform. The A-10 is a one trick pony. Modern air forces - even the USAF - can't afford to have too many of those.
  12. Ryan you're missing the point. How long was that A-10 stuck on the ramp for being repaired? Did it fly again during the war? Did it fly again at all? Is it not better to build an aeroplane that avoids being hit in the first place? I really don't know how many times I have to repeat what I've said above - the A-10 was designed post Vietnam where the low altitude threat was almost entirely small calibre AAA up to 23mm. It was never designed to fly into the teeth of the kind of modern battlefield AA defences that I've given examples of above. Look at the changes made in the A-10C and the capabilities added - they are designed to allow it to fly at medium altitude using precision guided weapons so that it doesn't have to go down low and put itself in danger in the first place. Exactly. Just as General Horner explained above - when the A-10A was sent against well trained and equipped Republican Guard units it got a bloody nose, with FOURTEEN aircraft on the ramp needing repairs before they could fly again. F-16s had to be used to finish the job. Another interesting case study to look at from Desert Storm was "Package Q". Emboldened by early Coalition successes a very large strike package consisting of 78 aircraft including more than 50 F-16s supported by F-4Gs, F-15Cs and EF-111As were sent to attack targets in the Baghdad area. The mission was a failure, two F-16s shot down, and several aircraft barely making it to friendly tankers before they ran out of fuel. The package was quite effectively "mission killed" by Iraqi air defences and the Coalition planners then went straight back to only using F-117 and Tomahawk missiles to attack targets in the Baghdad area. One of the lessons taken away from Package Q was that the next generation of tactical aircraft would need to be stealth if they were to remain effective in the face of an integrated air defence network. Fast forward to 1999 and the Serbians managed to shoot down an F-117 with a 1961 era S-125 Neva missile. A lot of people make the excuse this was a one off, a fluke, poor planning by the F-117 mission planners, etc. What is slightly less well known is that another S-125 detonated close enough to another F-117 in the same conflict. That F-117 managed to make it back to its base but it never flew again. Gulf War 1 & 2, Libya 1 & 2, the Balkans - all pitted the west against 1960s era Soviet air defence systems. US/NATO/Western aircraft and weapons remain untested against anything like contemporary Russian and Chinese air defence systems.
  13. The AC-130 is a pretty mean system, but much like the A-10 it needs a permissive environment to work in. From what I've read the demand for AC-130s outstrips the supply by quite a bit. Another interesting platform that has come out of Afghanistan is the USMC's Harvest HAWK. Then of course you can consider UAVs such as the MQ-1 and MQ-9. The whole CAS game has changed dramatically in the last decade. Prior to Afghanistan it was something of a niche capability performed by selected platforms. Nowadays pretty much every aircraft can perform it and the capabilities in terms of sensors, datalinks/networking and weapons have improved dramatically.
  14. Correct, the current model A-10C doesn't. However, if the A-10C is now going to be loitering at medium altitude using precision weapons... well just about every other combat jet can do that too (and has been doing that for over decade), so the A-10 becomes kind of redundant for everything except fighting poorly equipped insurgents. So if you are required to make serious defence cuts and entire aircraft fleets have to go, it maybe begins to become clear why the A-10 is the prime candidate.
  15. By "control of the skies" I presume you are talking about air superiority, and you'd be right. However, please have a read of the Wikipedia links I posted above showing some of the more modern battlefield air defence systems the Russians are selling. These are self contained systems that can be embedded within ground units. Their very purpose is to counter against enemy aircraft operating at low altitudes. The A-10 has never been tested against these. As I said, I think you'd struggle to find an A-10 pilot who be happy about the idea of getting down in the weeds with air defence systems like these embedded in the units he's trying to attack. Again, there's a very good reason why the A-10C was given the capability to carry an advanced targeting pod and precision weapons employed from medium altitude. We had a very similar situation here in the UK in 2010 when it was announced the Harrier would be retired. The Harrier is to the British very much what the A-10 is to the Americans - a hugely popular, iconic aircraft that has seen decades of sterling service, was one of the heroes of the Falklands War and provided a unique capability. However, the decision was made to rationalise down to just two types of fast jet and the choice was between retiring the Harrier or the Tornado. It was decided the Tornado was the more important capability retain. It looks like maybe defence spending in the US is starting to come a bit more under the spotlight, just as it has in the UK. Tough times, tough decisions.
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