The Proff

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  1. The Proff

    My take on voice activated checklists

    VC10man, I downloaded the Iris version of the Vulcan while it was on special offer. It has a few quirks, such as always loading with the engines off and the cockpit dark. There is a set procedure to go through for starting the engines, but when you get the knack it can be quite quick. There is a fast start option, or you can use the air bleeds from engine 1 to the others to do your own fast start. Either way, if you save a flight while still in the air give yourself about 20,000ft height to get the plane flyable before it hits the ground - you even have to turn on the control surface motors and all the necessary fuel tanks! Mine then began losing the master power, and the switch had no effect. I found a solution by re-creating that flight from scratch, and then re-saving it. Soon after Iris let me have a patch for it, and I haven't seen this problem again. The Vulcan is heavily overpowered, and so the flight dynamics do model what I understand is the correct behaviour - leave the throttles at 100% after take-off and shortly the plane takes a dive. You again need enough height to idle the engines and slow the aircraft before you can recover form this. Another quirk is that the autopilot heading hold doesn't directly switch on, you need to select HDG in the radio stack window as well, though the course hold does work straight away. I've not tried all the others yet - I'm still enjoying landing by hand. Overall I enjoy flying this machine, and have a number of flights saved with it in different parts of the world.
  2. The Proff

    My take on voice activated checklists

    Hi Paul. Firstly I'd like to add my compliments on your software. I've used a combination of your editor and notepad to create my own checklist - for the Vulcan B2! This is based on the Iris model, using their checklists and adapting them where necessary. I'm not sure that I 've quite understood which indicators are referred to for the fuel panel checks - there seems to be some crossover between the centre console fuel panel and the starboard refuelling panel. Anyway, could you let me know where best to post the checklist for general use? I had a few issues in getting your software to work, as I'm using Windows 7 64 bit and it started minimising the FSX window every time I tried to use it. Switching the GUI off didn't help, and as I found in searching the web this is a problem inherent in Windows. However the workaround of running FSX in a maximised window stopped the minimising problem, and also meant I could use the checklists to the full. Picking up on your initial comments about the Windows default voice, I installed the free Microsoft speech engine 11 and downloaded many of the 32 bit English voices. Initially I couldn't find them in control panel - another Windows 7 feature - but after more web searching I found that both the engine and SDK need to be installed, and then the registry entries need changing to be able to see them, after which they could be selected as the default voice. After all that, I found that, for me, the American ZiraPro is very clear and quite natural, closely followed by the English Hazel. Neither of them stumble over the technical terms, and by careful use of hyphens I could get a pause into the checklist items. I think the Vulcan checklists need a little more work, but are reasonably useful now. I'll start work on a few more and post them when they are ready. By the way, I noticed in your video the frame rate stuttered a bit, as mine did. After some advice at the 2015 Flight Sim show I invested in a GeForce GTX 960 video card. So far flying is now silky smooth, apart from some issues specifically with a payware Typhoon - I'll deal with that when I've got five minutes! Once again, my thanks for a useful piece of software, which certainly enhances the flying experience! Best Regards, Dave Millett