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Jimmy Helton

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Everything posted by Jimmy Helton

  1. Neat. I wonder what other marvels the triple seven has over the NGX? Personally, I was waiting for the 747 V2 in the -400 and -800 for my long haul, figuring it will be an investment at release price. From what I hear, it's going to be amazing. That, and it is and always will be the best looking wide body ever. The only thing stopping from also buying the 777 is the $$$, especially for the P3D version.
  2. Are you sure? See FCOM V2.11.41.19-22. There are four pages devoted to its operation. It was not included in the initial release, but my understanding is that it was included in a later update. If not, then why waste four pages of the manual on a feature not included?
  3. Hello! I want to be able to enter in an RTA waypoint according to the manual, but my RTS Progress page is totally grayed out. What step am I missing to activate this page?
  4. Some really interesting replies, mostly distorting the points that were being made. 1. There is no question that the Airbus automates 90% of the overhead panel functions on the Boeing 737, which is a throwback from the 60s. If everything is set to auto, all you really have to do in the bus is turn on the batteries, turn on the pumps, turn on the ADIRS, and manage the APU and lights. You aren't dealing with most of what else MUST be handled manually in a 737 overhead panel. So, can you turn off the automatic managing of most of these functions: yes, certainly, but, why would you? That's the whole reason they are there. That doesn't mean you don't "manage them" through a checklist, but you certainly aren't flipping switches to change your bus ties as you go from ground to APU to generators, manually turning on your hydraulics, turning on your window heats and yaw dampeners, or entering your pressurization altitude, etc. These functions have been simplified and modernized in a modern FBW airliner. If you examine the overhead panel on a 737 versus a 767 versus a 777, you can really see the generational progression of automating of the overhead workload, and really, the entire workload of the plane. I think I counted 14-18 steps to set up the NGX for a CatIII approach, whereas in the bus or the 777 you might have 5-7 steps. By the time you get to the 777 or bus, you won't find manual course dials or nav radios. It's all done by the flight management system. Point being it's not a less work vs. more work argument: it's a less automation vs. more automation argument, and if you choose to utilize all the automated features of a modern FBW airliner, you WILL have less to manage. I believe that is the design philosophy. 2. Yes, there is an extra step to descend in the Airbus. Instead of resetting the MCP and letting the FMC take the airplane automatically down its descent profile at T/D, the Airbus makes you sit there and wait for the exact moment to press the descend button after resetting the altitude to initiate descent. For all its automation, not even having the option to auto descend at T/D seems like an odd design choice to me. 3. ATC descent clearance hasn't been a factor in my vatsim flying, although perhaps in the real world it is. Centers rarely micromanage my altitudes, and leave that to the approach controllers. There have been a few occasions where I've requested permission to descend, but usually you are either allowed to descend at pilots discretion if you have published a STAR in your flight plan, or often on standard routes, you are given a crossing point (i.e. on the Boston to JFK route you always cross Calverton at 250/12000). How you get there is up to you, as long as you make the crossing and don't violate any speed or altitude restrictions. 4. Given that this thread has disintegrated into an Airbus vs. Boeing forum, I think we can mark it closed. The original questions were answered: yes, try Prepar3d, and yes, try the airbus. The NGX cockpit is a 1960's cockpit with a digital bandaide thrown on it to compete with the bus, which is an entirely new FBW digital aircraft. If and when Boeing designs a true 737 replacement, such as the 787 is for the 767, then I think we will see the analog switches go away. However, as long as they continue to update the 737, I believe their design philosophy of commonality will keep the switches where they are even in the MAX. Both airplanes work perfectly fine and are acceptable approaches to getting from point A to point B safely.
  5. I'm loving P3d. It's a big improvement over FSX. So far so good in the bus. She is very interesting to fly. In some respects, I love the automated and simple workflow. In other respects, it makes me feel less connected to the airplane in that I'm not micromanaging every little detail. In terms of FMC, I like the Boeing better thus far, and I'm perplexed why Airbus choose to require the pilots to initiate descent. They are both fun to fly for different reasons, I guess is the best way to put it. Vpilot could use an update.
  6. That was an unforgettable demo film. On the flipside, when Captain Scully landed his airbus in the Hudson, all he had to do was pull back on the stick and let the bus decided the correct angle of attack to stay above stall speed and ease into the river. That might have been more difficult in a Boeing. FBW is great when it works. I'm sure I will revisit my opinion after a few hundred hours in the bus as to which I like better and why, if you can even really choose.
  7. Alright so to report back: yesterday I made two very big leaps of faith: P3d v3 and the A320X. P3d is running a consistent 20 fps on my system without messing with any settings. It simply looks so much better than FSX tweaked to the max. Let's hope it's stable, because I did have a few CTD on it yesterday. However, today, I haven't had any issues. I wouldn't say it's running faster than FSX, but it's running prettier and more consistently (never any huge FPS slow downs). I've taken up the A320 on both FSX and P3d and no comparison that it looks better in P3d. In terms of the A320, I'm actually quite surprised how easy it was for me to pick it up. There just isn't that much to do in terms of setting up and managing the flight, compared to the NGX. I feel a huge difference in the way it flies and in the way it handles everything. In the Boeing, I'm the pilot. In the Airbus, I'm a voting member of a system designed to fly like an airliner, and if I do anything that it considers inappropriate, it has the power of veto. That being said, it flies very well, and I've taken it up and done a few laps in it. It's actually kind of fun just how smart it really is. I was going in fast and above glideslope on a visual approach and it decided hey dude we are going around. Fiddling with the autopilot it is a bit of a guessing game (do I want dots, do I not want dots, are dots with my manual selections good or bad), but it's really good at keeping me out of trouble. I'm still a bit confused about the flaps (1234 huh?) and I miss my Vspeeds on the PFD. Otherwise, so far so good. I'm really blown away at how automated and intelligent the Airbus is and they both have a place in my hanger. My recommendation for anyone looking to compare the two would be to learn the Boeing first so you can without a doubt learn to be the PIC. There is no replacement for being in charge for right or for wrong. The experience will make you a much more educated voting member of the Airbus flight management system. The other thing I would venture to say out of pure speculation is that when the ###### hits the fan, and all the automation goes to crap in the Airbus, would you rather have a Boeing pilot or a bus driver behind the stick (or yoke)? Now, where is that 747 v.2!!
  8. Hamoody, that's not an entirely unfair analysis of the 737. Boeing wanted to retain 60% cockpit commonality from the 727, and that retained commonality from the 707. With only a few minor changes, the NGX upper panel is straight out of the 60s. When I think of merging the best of Boeing with the best of fly by wire, I think 777 or 787. How do you think the bus compares to the 777 in terms of automation? If I do get the bus, do you recommend I use it in P3d over FSX?
  9. Honestly, I'm a PMDG kind of guy, and that's why I asked it here. PMDG pilots like Boeings, but they also appreciate detail. That doesn't mean PMDG afficianados give biased opinions. I'm looking for honest comments from folks who are intimately familiar with the way Boeing does things who have delved into the other side.
  10. Okay, so yesterday I spent most of the day cleaning up my ever bugged FSX installation. What I've found from experience is the more add-ons you cumulatively use, the more sluggish and error-prone FSX becomes every month (honestly, that's my experience with windows as well). I'm using a four year old system, albeit a very high end one for it's time, and it runs FSX pretty well. From time to time, I've found it to my benefit to wipe the hard drive and reinstall Windows from scratch. Similarly, from time to time, I uninstall FSX and reinstall from scratch to debug any errors that have crept into my simulation experience. Typically, this works pretty well. I'm using boxed FSX from 2006 plus boxed Acceleration. As I was flying around on my better but still less than entirely stable simulated world, it did dawn on me that the inevitable is going to have to happen if I want a truly stable simulation designed for THIS decade.....Prepar3d v 3.2. It also occurred to me that most of my add-ons, like ASN, Rex Essential + Overdrive, and FSC already are compatible with P3d, leaving me to the conclusion that if I switch the only issue would be my payware airplanes. Now, I wouldn't wipe FSX, because it works, and it has several of my PMDG planes. But, at the same time, I wouldn't particularly miss my Concorde X accelerating into a BSOD or my NGX freezing at random points in the flight path. I definitely wouldn't miss my gorgeous high def clouds turning into strange graphic artifacts. Going forward, I would buy P3d payware, such as the eagerly anticipated 747-400 v.2 and hope that P3d gives me the stable, predictable simulation experience that I want and need. Now, all that being said, it occurred to me that if I want to go ahead and start using P3d and see how well it does on my system in terms of frame rates, there is one modestly decent airliner that was smartly coded to work on both FSX and P3d...an airliner as foreign to me as the French language...an airliner I swore I would never fly...an airliner that is an unintuitive to me as picking up that pretty blond girl at the bar (not that I would as the wife would be ######)...but an airliner that I can keep even if my system decides that P3d is just too much for it to handle....the A320X. In the perfect world, the wife would agree that I should definitely sink $2500 into a new gaming computer as opposed to paving the driveway, and then rebuy all my payware in P3d. But, in the world I live in, such as it is, this seems like a safe bet if P3d doesn't work out for my system. As a Boeing forever driver, can any of you speak from experience as to how you found this airliner compared to the NGX? The way I see it, at best, I might actually like something completely different on occasion, and, at worst, I get to see how the other side lives. However, even just watching some cold and dark tutorials on youtube, the FMC makes me sweat and the MCP is scary (what, no VNAV?). By the time the engines are fired up, I've already convinced myself that the bus is just too different for a Boeing guy. What do you guys think?
  11. In order to save any livery specific changes, the Operations Center MUST be run with admin approval in Windows. Failure to do so will not allow FSX to recognize livery specific settings even when the OC records those settings as changed and saved. Page 20-21 refers to running FSX as an administrator, not the Operations Center.
  12. In order to save any livery specific changes, the Operations Center MUST be run with admin approval in Windows. Failure to do so will not allow FSX to recognize livery specific settings even when the OC records those settings as changed and saved. The reason I couldn't LAND 3 was that FSX was still recognizing every livery but house as Fail Passive, even though OC saved them as Fail Operational. This is such a simple fix that it should probably be the FIRST thing suggested if this problem is ever brought up again in the Forum. Kudos to Kyle Rodgers for suggesting it.
  13. Oh, Windows, how I love thee.... Yes, it turns out that not running PMDG as an administrator was the reason behind all my livery and autoland issues. It would have been nice to have a popup in the OC letting me know that was required, as it would have saved a LOT of my time. Kyle, thank you for thinking outside the box and making that suggestion!!! There was nothing wrong with the NGX or the pilot after all.
  14. I believe I've narrowed down the problem to the PMDG Operations Center. The NGX is not recognizing any aircraft specific changes saved through the OC. If I take any livery and then load the house PMDG tail number inside the cockpit, Land 3 works. I'm sure this is because the house PMDG is set to fail operational. I can also load any tail nail number from any livery and see that the cockpit doesn't match up at all to the "saved" livery specific settings in the Operations Center. The OC is updated to the current version.
  15. The PMDG Operations Center's aircraft specific settings per livery do not seem to be having any effect on the airplane. I noticed this when I flew the United livery the other day and the EFIS/MAP was up even though PFD/ND was selected and saved in the Operations Center. This could also explain my autolanding issues if it's not recognizing my fail operational setting. Is there a recommended fix for this?
  16. I guess there is a reason that SWA does not use autothrottle or VNAV. They want their pilots to be continually engaged with the airplane. I'm going to turn off all the magic and actually fly the plane for a while.
  17. Before I get into what I want to talk about, here is a little background on me. My last four years of flying and learning systems aircraft that are as close to real as possible has been with Digital Combat Simulator and their A-10C they developed for the Air National Guard. From there I went on to the Ka-50 and eventually the Mig-21, but the A-10C was always my first and favorite. I remember reading the manual for 3 months before I even took to the air. Sure, I flew in FSX before that, but I never invested in payware. Last year, I decided to take the plunge and fully immerse myself in flying as real as you can get airliners on Vatsim. There was really only one choice: the PMDG NGX. That being said, I have a lot to learn about airliners, which brings me to the topic of this post: greasing on my landings. When do most of you start your flare in the 800? I've been trying to figure out the exact point during altitude callouts to grease it on without slapping it down too hard or heaven for bid bouncing the nose gear. I don't always get it right. I'd say I get it wrong more then I get it right. It may really be more about the feel, but most of you probably start your flare at a specific altitude above the runway. Assuming a flaps 40 approach speed going down the ILS with the autopilot doing the throttling, is there a consistent time to flare? Any advice on how to get the feel of flaring an airliner like the NGX? To compare apples to oranges, when I'm flying the A-10C in Digital Combat Simulator, it forces you to grease on and damages the gear if you land too hard or too fast (anywhere from busted tires, gear won't retract, to collapsed gear). When I land the Warthog, I'm very much focused on speed. I know my V speeds, and those numbers don't really change between flights as much as they do on an airliner. My objective is to cross the threshold (Vat) about 10 knots above the touchdown speed and lose that speed on flare to touch down right above stall speed (Vso) (very similar to a Cessna I might add). Hit the runway too fast and you pay for it (or rather, Uncle Sam does). Of course, I'm manually controlling pitch and throttle and making constant adjustments on approach to keep the proper angle of attack and speed. I can't stress enough how you have to be about 7-10 seconds ahead of the jet on your throttle and stick inputs. The Warthog has a very rudimentary autopilot even less capable then what you'd find on a DC-3, and so almost all of the flying is done by hand. On the NGX, I feel like it's so automated that I have no "feel" for the airplane, if that makes any sense. The autopilot takes me down the ILS until decision height. The autothrottle idles the throttle somewhere between 30-50 AGL, and its up to me to time my flare and place her on the centerline. I once heard an airline pilot say that you don't land an airliner, you fly her on to the runway. Still the same principles should more or less apply to any airplane....with the autothrottle idling the engines there should be a "right time" to flare to touch down at just the right speed. Maybe I should manually fly my approaches, and dispense with the autopilot altogether until I can really "feel" the NGX. I'm definitely going from a sports car (if you can call a Warhog that) to a bus. Any thoughts? Jimmy Helton
  18. Should I reference this thread in the support ticket? Any advice on how to phrase it so they don't turn around and tell me to follow the tutorial?
  19. RESULTS: Oddly enough, after creating a new panel state from the default panel state, the NGX would not autoland, same as before. The NGX only seems to autoland if you start with the default panel state with engines on. Since my instrument settings are the same for each landing, I can't think of what the difference would be that I'm overlooking. There has to be a reason. The NGX is a complex machine, and I'm not willing to write it off on software issue just yet.
  20. Okay, I accidently saved the panel states with the Isolation Valve off instead of open, so that explains Engine 2! I will test my newly saved panel states tomorrow and report back, then I think we can mark this topic closed. It still doesn't explain why the default cold and dark panel state won't do an autoland, but we have a sufficient workaround.
  21. Well, went to test my newly saved panel states and now have a new problem. Engine 2 won't start up! Bleeds are on, ignition is set to both, and packs are off. Fuel pumps are on. Engine one starts per usual then after hitting GRD for engine 2 the valves open but absolutely no fuel flow! N2 doesn't spool up at all. I tried everything I could think of to fix it. I'm not doing anything I haven't done a thousand times before.
  22. Okay, what I have done is started with the default and then after doing an autoland made a new cold and dark file with the ngx about as shut down as most pilots would see in real life. My understanding is that few airlines ever go completely cold and dark even after the last flight of the day. I have made that new file my start panel state.
  23. How would that be any different than loading the default panel and then saving to cold and dark?
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