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    • Thanks, framerate performance is again becoming a tit for tat situation. Laminar are doing a great job in getting great performance out of X-Plane (11), but developers are gulping it up and mostly in those big 4K textures and heavy features. The SP172 (low Res) delivers 1826mb of textures where as the Pipstral Panthera loads in at 2270mb with the same graphic settings and scenery, so that pretty well shows the Aerobask is a heavier and a more featured design, I think however you should get away away with it, because it is a far efficient design than the AFL but it will still be compromised. I am now even starting to struggle with a 4gb Graphic card, never mind a 2gb...  such is progress. SD
    • Thanks for this very thorough review (as always). One thing I didn't catch (if you mentioned it) is how is the framerate performance, compared to let's say, the AFL c172 (which I can only barely run on my meager 2013 MBP)?
    • News! - Now Released! : Boeing 757 v2.0 Pro Extended by FlightFactor Aero   FlightFactor/Vmax/SteptoSky have released the Professional Extended version of the Boeing 757. An already highly configured aircraft with a study grade systems, here is another step up with more X-Plane11 compatibility (X-Plane11 is highly recommended as this aircraft does use all of X-Plane11 features).     The Professional Extended version now comes with three versions of the B757...  The original -200 version (above). And the new -300 and the -200SF Cargo versions. (below)     And each version is available with two different engine configurations (P&W and RR).     Almost everything has been upgraded including the menu system to the iPad touch (yes it was there before on v2, but it is interactive).     Including this full list of features with the FMS/EFIS... Fully Functional Professional FMS and EFIS System Custom designed Flight Management Computer, integrated with other plane systems. Terminal procedures from updatable database. Two independent analogue instrument sets for captain and first officer. Two independently simulated EFIS (EADI/EHSI configuration) for captain and first officer. Dual-FMS with two independently working CDUs. Working instrument comparators. Triple IRS and triple symbol generator systems with realistic instrument source switching. Dual air-data computers with custom failure modes and source switching. Independent 2 nav and an ils receivers. Realistic inertial and radio position updating, you can see the individual inaccuracies of those systems. Triple-channel autopilot with realistic dependencies. Fail operational and fail passive autoland with mode degradations based on system failures. Load company routes generated by Professional Flight Planner X (or other compatible programs) directly into the FMC. FMC can be used on external touchscreen or tablet, optimized for the Retina iPad.   The -200 and -300 cabin has been upgraded as well, with a completely new interior..     The Professional Extended version is $20 more than the standard $64.95 Boeing -200 version for the new -300 and the -200SF. But if you already own the current -200 standard version you can upgrade for the $20 by going to your original 757 v2 invoice to get your discount code or email sales@x-plane.org  to get the $20 upgrade price.     ______________________________________________________________________     Yes! the Boeing 757-200ER Professional & Extended versions by VMAX and FlightFactor Aero is NOW! Available from the X-Plane.Org Store here :   Boeing 757-200ER v2 Professional   Price is US$64.95   Boeing 757-200ER v2 Professional Extended   Price is US$84.95   Boeing 757-200ER v2 Professional Extended Upgrade   Price is US$64.95 + US$20 You must already have purchased and own the current Boeing 757-200 v2 version and the aircraft is required to get the upgrade deal!   Images are courtesy of FlightFactor Aero   _____________________________________________________________________________________   News by Stephen Dutton 15th November 2017 Copyright©2017: X-PlaneReviews    
    •   Aircraft Review :  Dornier Do 228 100 HD Series by Carenado   There is one aircraft that easily holds the record of the most hours flown by myself in X-Plane and that is the Carenado Beechcraft 1900D, and it is not hard to see why...  The B1900D is a very versatile machine in that it is hub and spoke master, a short range regional buster, Island hopping guru and simply a great aircraft in the capacity of flying 19 passengers virtually anywhere within a 500nm range...  and so yes both me and the B1900D have had a very long and intimate relationship.   So when Carenado announced the Do 228 for FS/P3D my interest picked up as the aircraft has very similar performance and the aircraft is the same size as the B1900D. Obviously we had to wait for the X-Plane version and now here it is, and very nice aircraft it is as well.   First of all let us clear one thing up. I noted the Do 228 has the same performance as the B1900D and it does comply with that. It has the same 19 passengers + 2 crew loading, the Beechcraft is however slightly faster at 280kts to 223kts, but the real difference is in the range. The Beechcraft can run at 500nm as to the noted 213nm for the Do 228, but you can run the same range per weight in the Do 228 at 1500kg for the same 500nm range as the B1900D or load up 14 passengers at a 1325kg payload weight to achieve a longer 700nm range, so the same routes are achievable as the B1900D if you get the weights right, and a long ferry range is set at 1,276 nmi (2,363 km) with a 547 kg payload. So that point is worth noting if you want to use the aircraft for certain longer routes.   In the late 1970s, Dornier GmbH developed a new kind of wing, called the TNT (Tragflügel neuer Technologie – Aerofoil new technology), subsidized by the German Government. Dornier then tested it on a modified Do 28D-2 Skyservant and with Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-110 turboprop engines. Finally, Dornier changed the engine and tested the new aircraft, which was named Do 128 with two Garrett AiResearch TPE-331-5 engines. The company developed a new fuselage for the TNT and TPE 331–5 in two variants (15- and 19-passenger) and named both project-aircraft E-1 (later Do 228-100) and E-2 (later Do 228-200). At the ILA Berlin Air Show in 1980, Dornier presented the new aircraft to the public. Both of the prototypes were flown on 28 March 1981 and 9 May 1981 for the first time.   After German certification was granted on 18 December 1981, the first Do 228-100 entered service in the fleet of Norving in July 1982. The first operator of the larger Do 228-200 entered service with Jet Charters in late 1982. Certification from both British and American aviation authorities followed on 17 April and 11 May 1984 respectively and by 1983, the production rate of the Do 228 had risen to three aircraft per month; at this point, Dornier had targeted that 300 Do 228s would be produced by the end of the 1980s.   In November 1983, a major license-production and phased technology-transfer agreement was signed between Dornier and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) was signed; a separate production line was established and produced its first aircraft in 1985.   RUAG, who had acquired the type certificate for the Do 228 in 2003 from a cash strapped Dornier, and then announced their intention to launch a modernized version of the aircraft, designated as the Do 228 Next Generation, or Do 228 NG. On 18 August 2010, the Do 228NG received its airworthiness certification from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).  The majority of manufacturing activity for the type is located in Germany; however, most airframe subassemblies, such as the wings, tail and fuselage, are produced by HAL in India. The main changes from the previous Dornier 228-212 model were a new five-blade propeller made of composite material, more powerful engines and an advanced glass cockpit featuring electronic instrument displays and other avionics improvements, to date Dornier/RUAG have produced 245 aircraft and 125 Do 228s has been produced by HAL in India. (wikipedia)   Carenado Dornier 228 100 As a pretty aircraft in looks go then the Do 228 is well a bit...  unusual, or with a dodo bird sorta look about it. But I will admit it looks quite nice in the flesh. Certainly the great Carenado design helps here enormously and the sheer detailing gives the aircraft a serious presence and it looks quite brilliant in the right lighting conditions.     The severe angled wingtips add in to an odd wing shape as is the long bulbous toucan nose, but there is something quite complete about the aircraft and it is a actually a noted STOL utility machine and not a sporty speedy design in the first place anyway.   The exterior looks clean and quite modern, but the cockpit gives away the aircraft's real age with the help of Carenado's worn out and torn feel.     It is exceptionally well done with the sheer craftmanship at making the aircraft look highly used and very realistic. The design is the old clockwork dials and gauges style, so the moving over from the B1900D cockpit style is quite easy. Note the really worn out and used yokes...  lovely with active trim buttons, and they can be hidden away from view.   The cabin is very similar in a boxy sort of way to the B1900D as well...     ...     it is highly detailed with beautiful seating and panel work, as for perfection... it is pretty close.   Instrument Panel The blue worn scratchy instrument panel facia does not help out here in making the panel look more complex than what it actually is...     ...  if the panel had say a cream or white background like on the Caravan you would see a more modern style and a more clearer simpler design, but it does give you a real feel for the 70's and 80's period that has been worn and run down by the the intervening years, and oh yes...   I totally love it.     The Standard Six instruments that are centred in line of sights of both the flying pilot and co-pilot with the Airspeed Indicator, Artificial Horizon and the Attitude Indicator on the top row and the VOR/ADF pointer, Heading Dial and Vertical Speed Indicators set out directly below, the bank/turn coordinator is built into the artificial horizon and also a pointer version to the far left (far right on the co side). The are two clocks each side top, with a rate fast/slow gauge on the left and an outside temperature dial on the right. Chunky gear lever is bottom panel.   The pilot get a few extra instruments in a radio altitude meter and the autopilot display. there is a KDI 572 Distance Measuring Equipment (DME) below the rad alt dial (arrowed below). There is a very nice annunciator panel that you can test and this will also test the autopilot display text as well (far left arrow).     Co-Pilot has the altitude setting panel and the air conditioning/bleed panel that actually works with great fan noise that goes up in volume the more you set the fan speed higher.   Centre panel is the main engine gauges that is almost exactly the same layout as the B1900D with the standard twin sets of gauges set down the centre left of the main panel and they cover the twin engines..   Torque (%), ITT (*Cx100) - (Interstage Turbine Temperature), Fuel Flow lbs/hr, Turbine % RPM, and Oil temps. Two fire handles are top of the engine gauges for each engine.   Usually centre panel right is the avionics stack, but here in the Do 228 this layout is different. Top are the twin main fuel gauges (x100lbs) and a resettable used fuel counter in lbs. Then are the switchable tank switches for each aircraft side tank group which contains a total usable fuel capacity of 2,078 pounds. The fuel setup is an Inboard Tank - Outboard Tank and Feeder Tank for a total combined usable fuel load of 4,155 lbs. Below the fuel tank setting switches is a Universal MFD-640 display that shows the default X-Plane map display.   Centre Console The centre console is quite complex with most of the avionics, autopilot and radio units that are laid out on here.     Top left is the aileron, rudder and stabiliser positions with the flap settings to the right. Then some very nice looking BF Goodrich prop de-icer gauges in amps, they work when you switch on the electric de-icers on the OHP.   Right console is your avionics stack, with the GNS530 built in top, then a KMA 24 radio selector. Then two radio sets in the Bendix/King KX 165 COMM 2/VOR-NAV2 set (COMM1 and VOR-NAV1 is set on the GNS530) and the Bendix/King KR 87 ADF radio tuner below. The transponder is a Bendix/King KT 76A, basic but it works.     Lower right console is interesting because there is also the default X-Plane FMS panel installed. In reality it allows you to use both GPS systems for setting up your flightplan...  one with the GNS530 unit for a simple flight plan (which I did here), or use the more complex FMS unit to add in SID/STAR and Runway allocation points to your flightplan. You can also invert the flightplan (on the GNS530) as well and both units will accept the rerouting changes.     Autopilot is bottom right panel with the pop-up scalable version available from the left lower menu tab (A). The autopilot has two feature settings in "Bank Limit" and "Soft Ride". Bank Limit is obvious but is only used during cruise flight, Soft Ride is used during turbulence to prevent the autopilot from over-correcting. The only odd item is the FD Off button in that when on it is blank and shows "Off" only when switched off, so you tend to push it as you think it is already switched off and not on?   The aircraft's hydraulic system is powered by an electric motor. System pressure is indicated on the pressure gauge located on the hydraulic panel at the aft end of the center console. The hydraulic system affects these systems in Landing Gear extension and retraction - Wheel brakes and Nosewheel Steering (NWS). The switches are covered by red "Do not Touch" flaps and so you "Don't touch" them unless if you want to fly everywhere with the gear down, as they deactivate the gear mechanism and nosewheel steering.     Throttle and Engine Speed (mixture) levers are excellent with nice chrome handles for the stubby throttle levers. The Do 228 has a "Start Lock" system where as the propellers are flat when starting up the turbines...  So to engage the start locks, the power levers are then briefly pulled back into reverse while the engine is between 60% and 30% RPM, then to disengage the start locks, the power levers are briefly pulled into reverse while the engine is above 60% RPM. However start locks must be disengaged before attempting to taxi or takeoff.   The Avionics power switch is quite hard to find... It is labeled "Radio Master" and not "Avionics" and it is situated behind the throttle levers (I lost a lot of time looking around with that one), another switch here is for the optional to install the Reality XP's GTN 750 unit, but this is an addon extra and costs you another $49.95, and that replaces the GNS530.   Overhead Panel Like everything else in this Do 228 cockpit the excellent Overhead Panel (OHP) is worn and very realistic.     The Dornier has two engine-driven starter-generators of 28 V and 200 amps each that is controlled by the two GEN switches for two nickel cadmium batteries at 24V, 25 amp-hour and both are normally connected to Bus 1, this then supplies power when either BATT is on and MASTER switch is ON. AC current is two static inverters to provide 26/115 VAC 400 Hz current busses as the 115V Bus - 26V Bus. And the systems are very realistic in operation and tree settings. Ground power is switchable on Batt 1 and Batt 2 in the lower position, but there is no external GPU provided which would have been a nice feature. The main electrical panel is on the right.   Internal light switches are top left and the External switches are top right, lighting for the pilot and co-pilot (Instr) are both ends with the main panel lighting right. De-Ice is left centre and fuel pumps are left centre lower.  Bottom left panel is the ignition and starter panel, which is a little tricky until you work it out...  The window blinds in their stored position does cover parts of the ignition and starter panel, they are odd things too and not very effective but they are well done.   Top of the OHP are the fuses and the (active) rudder trim handle.     Internal fittings are excellent and note the great chrome touches and even a cup holder. There is so much detail in simulation today and it can be overwhelming. The armrests do slip up (animated) and that is required to access the centre console in certain areas.   External Details The external detailing is just as high quality as the internal fittings. Carenado have always been the leaders in the sheer detailing and perfect design work that others till struggle to match (that gap is however getting more closer) but this Do 228 proves certainly how high the standard is today.   Panel and rivet work is just sensational, perfect panels and the joints that are holding the whole aircraft together.     Even a year ago chrome was not an exceptional X-Plane feature, but boy that is not the case today...  the spinner chrome work here is simply awe-inspiring as is the engine and wing construction. Glass is also now highly evolved and very realistic and note the excellent spotters window.     Undercarriage detailing is exceptional as well. All struts are highly animated with force effects to recreate perfect gear movements when either on the ground or extended in the flowing air. The aircraft's ground stance widens and changes to the aircraft's weight as well.     Note the excellent main rear gear struts and highly realistic textures of wear and tear with the perfect tyre rubber and great hubs, there are nice lighting housings as well with both the taxi and landing lights perfectly recreated.   The aircraft's flap animation is well worth highlighting. There are four flap positions in: Up - 1 -2 - DN. The movement between Up and 1 is very slight but crucial, then the larger movements to 2, the 3 and finally the full DN (Down) position. Detailing of the flap rod - track system is excellent.     Menu The menu system is standard Carenado with three tabs, lower left screen in (A) Autopilot, (C) Cameras (Views & Sound) and (0) Options.     (0) Options has switchable (on/off) Glass and Instrument reflections. And four animated door options for nose Baggage Door, Pilot Door, Passenger Door left (1) and Passenger Door right (2) and another Baggage Door in the tail. You can change the livery here also.     Static elements have gone a little basic with Carenado. And here you only get the options of chocks and cones, but now when you do deploy the static elements the pilots disappear! No more leaving them sitting there in the cockpit in the dark all night...  now they go home to their families.     If you want the crew visible with the static elements then you can have that as well, via the "Pax" logo on the (C) - Views menu.   Flying the Dornier Do 228 Engine start is making sure all the right switches are correctly placed...     ...  you have to "Enrich" or prime the engine after switching on the fuel pumps, then set the IGN switch to start, this is not the actual starter switch, that is the one under the protective cover. "Start" is set to ground or air depending on the engine start. and your Engine Speed (mixture) levers are set to minimum and the "Start Lock" is set.   If you got the procedure right then the engines should whine and start. Once running with a little more engine speed then turn the IGN off and reset the start switch cover to protect...     Sounds are excellent, if brilliant. All sounds are of course FMOD and 360º directional, start up, taxi and in flight and you really feel the aircraft through its aural background, and there is no boring droning sounds here either to drive your nerves up the wall... no you can spend a lot of time in the Do 228 and enjoy every last minute of it.   Like most Carenado's the Do 228 is sensitive to taxiing speed. Here you need the Engine Speed levers (red arrow below) to be as low as you can get them, or you will find the aircraft running away from you. And then there is a trick...  two throttle levers even slightly up is too much power, but one lever (green arrow below) is fine and the aircraft will still track straight quite easily     Getting out of tight gates is always a pain with light props, as you can't turn out without hitting something and the pushback truck overwhelms the aircraft. I found the Do 228 was great with using the reverse pitch to do the job... If this is a real world action I am not sure of (I did check) but I used it anyway.   The Do 228 has the beta gate behind the throttles, but the beta system does not work that well in X-Plane and is confusing in different aircraft. But I did find the X-Plane setting "Toggle thrust reversers" did switch the pitch from forward to reverse, so I use that. You do need to use both throttles in this case, but it works fine, you use the same setting for pitch reverse on landing and it works fine there as well...   There is setting for "beta" prop in the X-Plane settings but I found it didn't actually work and you have to keep switching it over every time you change the aircraft, toggle thrust reversers does the same job anyway with both prop and jets.     The forward windows are huge and the view is almost helicopter like. the wipers only cover the lower half, so you have to look out low if the weather is heavy. Taxiing is a joy, nice speed (on one throttle feel) and great tracking.   Runway lineup on EGJJ (Jersey) RWY26 and don't forget to put the Engine Speed levers to "high" or full power and flaps only to the "Flap 1" setting. The Do 228 is a STOL utility aircraft, so if you flap setting is too high it will lift up quite quickly and suddenly.     The yokes don't really infringe that much on the instruments, so you can leave them visible, they do cover a little of the lower Vertical Speed instrument, but not the upper positive pitch area which you are only now using.   I am relatively light at 4177kg, so the Do 228 leaps off the line and powers it's way down the runway, rotation is around 138kts or the yellow marker (green arrow) on the airspeed indicator...     ....   rate of climb is 1,570 ft/min, so just under that at 1400 ft/min is fine.     Gear retraction and animation is excellent, and well worth observing.   The Do 228 handles really nicely (when trimmed, but you don't need much of that), this is a really lovely aircraft that responds to your every whim, you really feel the Do 228 as that unique wing has very special qualities.     With the Autopilot (AP) activated you can use the VS to hold your pitch, this is different in the case that in most times with using the VS (vertical Speed) in that you press the VS then you set your climb angle. In the Do 228 it is a different system in that the VS only holds the pitch, to adjust the pitch manually you have to switch the VS button OFF and then use the "pitch" wheel to descend or climb.     Another note is that to lock in the flightplan you have to press three buttons in the "HDG", "NAV" and NAV/HSI to connect. The NAV/HSI does the same operation as the GPS/VLOC on the GNS530.     A couple of quirks... the window reflections are very strong, too much so. You can hide them of course, but I love great window reflections.     An odd one as well is the reflections in the cabin windows are the cockpit view? very strange.     The drop down front window blinds are not really effective and as noted cover some of the switchgear on the OHP, but they are however realistic.     Yes you can fly around up here all day, nice sounds and with a great X-Plane view...      A lot of flyer users struggled to get the Do 228 down to a slow speed of the blue marked 100kts. You won't unless you tune back the Engine Speed levers to "LOW". There is still plenty of power to keep the Dornier happy, and unless you need a lot of power or are in a go-around situation the low mode setting is fine.     In fact that 100kt zone is a nice place to be, but only full flap at the last minute because it has that bit more heavier drag...     In low light and restricted visibility the heavy window reflections became quite strong, yes I could still turn them off, but why should I have to do that. Basically if you follow the yellow 138kts, Blue 110kts and Red stall 70kt markers and you can't can't go wrong and then work and get your approach speed down to a comfortable 85knts.     Flare should be a smidge over or even on the Red 70knt marker. Control in the final moments is very good with lots of feedback and feel.     Hitting the reverse pitch is like walking into a wall, it is very effective and I easily found I could use the first exit off EGHI's RWY 20. It is a STOL remember, and you don't have to give out full throttle power either to slow the aircraft from an already slow landing speed...  reverse prop sounds are excellent.     Reducing the engine speed earlier allows you to easy transition back to your taxi speed, but remember only to use one throttle lever, any side can be used and also helps while doing the turning at the tight end of runway in turnaround situations.     Last but not least is the way you shutdown the aircraft's Honeywell TPE-331-10 turboprop, 776 shp (579 kW) engines. If you pull the engine speed levers to the full reverse the engines will still rotate...  You will need to go back up to that actual starter switch, that is the one under the protective cover and switch it over to "STOP", and only then will the Honeywell's finally slow down a stop.   Do 228 Lighting Lighting is excellent and very versatile. There is both taxi and landing lights, but you can only use one or the other as they are both on the same switch...     ...  there is very good tail lighting and a wing (Inspection/Ice) light, but again both are on the same switch so it is again one or the other.     Cockpit lighting is very, very good. There is both separate instrument lighting for both pilots, under glareshield strip lighting and overhead dome lighting and all are adjustable and you are able to find the right lighting conditions that you require.     OHP is separately controlled as is the strip lighting.     The cabin is actually even better!  There is three cabin settings in: Off - Dim - Full     Seatbelt & No Smoking signs are separate as well and even the Fire exit signs can be switched on or off.     External has good navigation, beacon and the new double strobe flash. However the window reflections are quite bad at night and need to be turned off.     Liveries There are eight liveries with the default white called "Substance". All liveries are 4K and very high quality textures, and they do take a fair bit of power and framerate to run if you have your Texture Resolution set high, your best option is to down the texture resolution a notch to pull it under the 4gb graphic limit. Other liveries include: 57-06 (German), Aerocardal (Chile), Air Caraibes (French Guadeloupe), G-EMEK and Aurigny (UK), MM-69231 (Mexico) and Kustwacht (Philippines).     Summary You marvel at the changes, now more than ever as the quality goes higher, aircraft go more complex and you have even more extreme detailing, last years brilliance is this years middle shelf life and on it goes. But how good is this Dornier Do 228-100.   In every area it exceeds, and you get so much now for your flying dollar. The only blight on the copybook are the reflections, just too strong and become even intrusive in certain lighting conditions and have to be turned off, the cabin window reflections are the wrong ones as well.   But that is a smidgen of the smallest of the smallest of things compared to what you have here. The Do 228 does have some quirks that you need to adjust too, but again that is part of the familiarization of flying different aircraft. And to note the aircraft is VR compatible as well and ready for your Virtual Reality headset.   The quality is just outstanding as is the detailing with outstanding full PBR (Superb material shines and reflections) that are working overtime here, features are excellent and it flies extremely well once you are accustomed to its design and observe its weight restrictions. Two types of FMS systems are also available and its your choice on which one you use. Lighting internally is excellent as are the FMOD sounds... it is just a great aircraft.   Is it then better than the B1900D its main competitor? Overall the Do 228 is a more modern construction from Carenado than the far older B1900D, so it has a more deeper feel and very expansive and a higher quality feel. But the B1900D is still extremely good when you take it in its latest XP11 form, so both aircraft are really line ball the same in many ways. Certainly for me I will be putting more hours in the Do 228 as it is so good and nice to fly, so overall the choice for those short regional/hub&spoke routes are now simply down to a coin toss? B1900D or the Do 228, either way you are a certain winner which ever aircraft you choose. The Do 228 is however highly addictive to fly in X-Plane11...  the best yet from Carenado, and maybe yes...  it is overall excellent.   ______________________________________________________________________     Yes! the Dornier Do 228 100 HD Series by Carenado is NOW available from the new X-Plane.Org Store here :
      DO228 100 HD Series   Price is US$37.95   Features Specially designed engine dynamics for XP11. Flight physics optimized for XP11 standards. Ground handling adapted for XP11 ground physics. Physically Based Rendering materials and textures throughout. PBR materials authored with industry-standard software used by the film and gaming industries. X-Plane GNS530 (FPS friendly) Support for RealityXP's GTN750 (integrated into 3D cockpit, when available). VR compatible click spots. Goodway Compatible. Realistic behavior compared to the real airplane. Realistic weight and balance. Tested by several pilots for maximum accuracy.   Requirements:
      X-Plane 11 Windows, Mac or Linux 2GB VRAM Minimum. 4GB+ VRAM Recommended Note the 4GB VRAM is highly recommended, to use the 2GB minimum your texture settings will have to be set quite low.   Installation Download of the Arrow Dornier  228 is 668mb and it is installed in your General Aviation Folder as a 898.00mb folder.   As noted liveries are 4K and very high quality textures, and they do take a fair bit of power and framerate to run if you have your Texture Resolution set high, a notch below is recommended. The Reality XP's GTN 750 unit can be installed, but this is an addon extra and costs you another $49.95, and that replaces the GNS530 on the centre console.   Documents Documentation is very good, but no real POH (Pilots Operation Handbook). Quickstart manual is good to find all the great features, but it is no flying guide.   X-Plane FMS Manual.pdf Copyrights.pdf Credits.pdf DO228 Emergency Procedures.pdf DO228 Normal Procedures.pdf DO228 Performance Tables.pdf Do228 Quickstart Reference Guide.pdf DO228 Reference.pdf Recommended settings XP11 .pdf   _____________________________________________________________________________________   Review by Stephen Dutton 17th November 2017 Copyright©2017: X-PlaneReviews   (Disclaimer. All images and text in this review are the work and property of X-PlaneReviews, no sharing or copy of the content is allowed without consent from the author as per copyright conditions)   Review System Specifications: Computer System: Windows  - Intel Core i7 6700K CPU 4.00GHz / 64bit - 16 Gb single 1067 Mhz DDR4 2133 - GeForce GTX 980/SSE2 - Samsung Evo 512gb SSD  Software:   - Windows 10 - X-Plane 11.05 Addons: Saitek x56 Rhino Pro system Joystick and Throttle : Sound - Bose  Soundlink Mini Plugins: Environment Engine by xEnviro v1.07 US$69.90 : XPRealistic Pro v1.0.9  effects US$19.95 : WorldTraffic 3.0 Plugin - US$29.95 Scenery or Aircraft - EGJJ - Jersey by tdg (X-Plane.org) - Free - EGHI - Southampton Airport by Pilot+Plus (X-Plane.OrgStore) - US$19.95    
    • This is a particular version of the A320-214 and the performance is referenced to that model. The winglet and latest Pratt & Whitney PW1100G engines will come later as the performance is very different. Another point is that the -214 version is the most common and there is years of data of performance as the newer neo versions have only a few years of data, and that data is very important here in this study sim. The current main aim is to get the base line, then work on the different performance models later. SD
    •   Update Review : Sikorski UH-60 Blackhawk v2.0 by BFDG (Brazilian Flightsim Development Group)   In July 2014 I reviewed the Sikorski UH-60 Blackhawk by Brazilian Flightsim Development Group and the final verdict was not good, in fact it was not great at all. It felt under developed and the flight model was very poor, if unflyable. To many users it was a Blackhawk to fly in X-Plane, but as a serious helio it was not and the Blackhawk and X-Plane deserved better. It did have a few updates but nothing than a complete rework of the performance was going to fix the embedded issues, and so here is that update to v2.0 and this new version also includes X-Plane11 compatibility as well.     The original release was to be honest awful. The 3d modeling was average in a very competitive arena and the textures were of a very average resolution and even by the standards of that time. In v2 both of those areas have had serious attention and this Blackhawk does have a far better modeled design. A lot of the pointed 3d work has been smoothed out and the details have been given a far more finesse look. Some areas are still clunky, but overall this new UH-60 is light-years away from the original.     The textures have also had a huge improvement in quality and resolution, that terrible blurriness is gone and that has been replaced by sharp detailing and fine lines.   Menu Now you have a menu as well of which the original release did not. The original release system was clumsy without a menu of which it was hard to open doors or whatever and worse you had completely different aircraft files for each version (eight in all) and that made it a huge download and a complex arrangement in loading up the version you required (plus the setting up of the countless view versions).     The new menu tab is positioned lower left of your screen, and you now have only one aircraft file to load. The menu is called the "The Hawk Pack', but I am just glad of the easy access.   "The Hawk Pack' does however make aircraft changes now far more easier...  in just pushing a radio button.     Want either an external two tank or four tank setup then just select the radio button, easy.   Doors can be opened and closed including the pilot and cargo door, but then they still only bang straight open and have no smooth animation between open and closed positions.     Seating can be optional as can the passengers, or now you can also select a cargo option for crates.     The crew are a bit Thunderbird/ Gerry Anderson in that their faces are bigger than their bodies, but overall they are not too bad.   There are still the two optional gunners...     They can be set internal or with the windows removed with the protrude out (gunship mode) via a flick switch called "Master ARM" on the centre pedestal. Of course the external fuel tanks have to be removed for this layout.   Seahawk There is the Seahawk version that changes the rear wheel position to under the cabin from the tail, and adds in a few different packages for carrier operations.     Pave Hawk You also have the option of the Pave Hawk or the HH-60 Pave Hawk. Pave Hawk's primary mission is insertion and recovery of special operations personnel, while the HH-60G Pave Hawk's core mission is recovery of personnel under hostile conditions, including combat search and rescue. Both versions conduct day or night operations into hostile environments. Because of its versatility, the HH-60G may also perform peacetime operations such as civil search and rescue, emergency aeromedical evacuation (MEDEVAC), disaster relief, international aid and counter-drug activities.   Pave Hawk combat enhancements include a radar warning receiver, infrared jammer and a flare/chaff countermeasure dispensing system.     Other options include Nose FLIR (Forward looking infrared), refueling probe and a different radar dome position (larger).   You can winch up and down a crew member via the red button on your cyclic and can also perform a Helicopter Rope Suspension Training (HRST) or SPIE which is Special Patrol Insertion/Extraction.     Slung Loads are also available of which you can carry up to 368lbs. It uses the built in X-Plane system to select the weight and a button on the cyclic (black) to attach the crates.   Final menu options include in that you can have the sounds as "earplugs" in that you have a headphones on and opening the pilot's door will give you the same effect. And P1 and P2 views for Pilot view and Co-Pilot view.   Flying the v2.0 Blackhawk To put it bluntly the original Blackhawk in handing was simply awful and required more than just a quick adjustment. To be fair BFDG has not tried to do a quick fix, but to redo the complete set up and find that balance and make the aircraft airworthy, it still has a few foibles in that if you go too aggressive and outside the envelope the aircraft will behave in a way you will not recover control (I did once but lost it a second time). That said if you keep to the parameters then the Blackhawk will fly quite well, not perfect but very flyable. A bonus here is that users that don't have high helio skills will and can fly the aircraft, but for absolute helio pro's there is still a bit of more tuning required.   First thing to note is that if you use a dual-throttle system (I use x56 Rhino) then the collective is set on the 2 Throttle and not the usual 1 throttle setting which is quite odd? (I kept wanging the 1 throttle up and down for ages with no lift?), and the throttle levers require both the main (button out) and the XFD to be both set forward for full power.   The collective need a lot of travel to bite, almost past halve way is required and the yaw is very strong (tail-rotor push power) in that the you are almost full left rudder to control the aircraft forward. These actions are to highlight the weight of the aircraft, the Blackhawk fully loaded is no lite-weight machine unlike say a niggly Robinson R22, but you are holding that heavy left yaw very high in flight in that for long periods in that it would certainly tire out your wrist.     But control is not that bad once you get the right feel for it...     ...   the UH-60 is quite nice to manoeuvre and you can easily get a nice flow ofwhich you require with flying choppers.     It is still very dark on the panel. Unless there is direct sunlight it is very hard to read or see instruments and the text is close to 5 point small and in areas buzzy. Certainly the X-Plane11 lighting dynamics do help in brightening up areas of the panel and it looks quite sensational in the right lighting conditions, but overall it is still quite a dark place to be.     To a point in times I had to use the built in X-Plane flashlight to find things...  in the daytime? and the main instruments have a sort of frosted look (not reflections) and do not great resolution or a blurriness that makes these important instruments hard to read, so you sometimes have to guess your speed and and height and the Artificial Horizon was very hard to read in feeling the attack angle of the aircraft for forward flight.     Instrument lighting is average as well. Really only one knob on the overhead panel works, and a lot of the switchgear on here is also still only for show.   Centre console is quite good with radio units and flight controls with SAS - Autoflight controls, but again it is quite low-res if you don't have your texture quality set at all the maximum settings.     A GNS 530 GPS (default) is now installed centre panel and is a great addition for longer flights and precision navigation, it pops-up as usual for easier access.   The SAS - Autoflight is also new to v2 and it does take away a lot of flying work for flying over distances. There are three buttons to control the Autopilot on the panel for HDG (Heading) NAV (Navigation with the GNS530) and ALT (Altitude) with SAS 1 and SAS 2 available. You do have to get the correct height and speed and heading correct to lock it in, and get it wrong and it then takes awhile to settle down, mostly in the pitch and it requires a little touch here and there from the stick to settle it down, but once centred it is fine. Likewise coming back to manual control requires you to find the transition point cleanly so it doesn't jump the aircraft (again mostly in the yaw position). Both panel and console switchgear activation works.     Sounds are very good, but not at the FMOD level yet, so you don't get that 360º sound directional feel, but I overall enjoyed them.   That dramatic Blackhawk tail down look is now very evident to wash off the speed...     ...  but even with the collective to the floor the aircraft doesn't want to descend. The best way to lose height is by pushing the nose down early before you wash off the speed, if not you will find yourself too high or floating at the landing area.     Autorotation is not to bad and control in the landing phase was not the fine jiggly art you require with a lot of helio's, the UH-60's size and weight works into your favour here and is easier for the more novice vertical flight pilot's out there.       Another fix in v2.0 is that the aircraft will now sit on the ground correctly and not above it, and with the correct shadow position. And the wipers also sit flat on the actual glass, and that one was really visually annoying.     Liveries The original release had only four liveries and they were all of very poor resolution...  this v2 release fixes that in a big way with twelve liveries and all of them in a very Hi-Res and quality textures, to say they are night and day different is that they are.   Included is the US Army default, US Army Black, Civil 1 & 2, a few Brazilian liveries in Exercito, Forca Aerea, Marinha and Federal Policia. A United Nations and US Navy with Airforce VIP (Trump mover) and another US Airforce Black in a Medivac role. Final two are US Coastguards in standard orange/white and yellow.       Summary Thankfully in a way the Brazilian Flightsim Development Group didn't try to patch up the Blackhawk original release as it needed a more serious and deeper redevelopment. And that is what you get here in v2.0.   Most of the offending areas have been redeveloped and that included the modeling, livery and texture quality and the inclusion of a menu system to reduce the aircraft files to one from eight as before.   Also added in has been various combat enhancements like FLIR, HRST, Slingload and Cargo (yes slingload and HRST was on the original, but here they actually work).   Most importantly the flight dynamics have had a lot of attention with those completely rebuilt flight dynamics and the aircraft is now actually flyable and even a very nice aircraft to fly if you get the correct feel for it. Don't get me wrong in that a Pro chopper pilot would not agree with that in context, it is certainly not at that level of performance, but it is a nice machine to fly if you want to use it at a certain skill level and that includes any entry fliers to helicopters, the newly added in Autopilot (autoflight) helps in this case as well.   Not all areas have had however the focus put on them. The cockpit is still very dark, but the actual poor instrument resolution and small unclear text doesn't help here either (although it is noted as upgraded?). Poor reflection detailing can make the instruments really hard to read and instrument lighting is quite average and they are all very important when flying helicopters as you do rely on your instruments for stable flight and certainly that altitude instrument.   Overall though this is a nice and though upgrade to the UH-60 Blackhawk from BFDG, certainly more work is needed in areas but you can now enjoy and fly the Blackhawk on a mission capability scenario and that was not at least possible before, the more I flew the Blackhawk then the more I liked it, but to note that this v2 is now X-Plane11 compatible only as the X-Plane10 version is now on the shelf.   Certainly the aircraft is head and shoulders better than before, so now this aircraft is well worth a purchase and deserves a lot of flying time to get the most out of it...  overall this is a very good and deep upgrade.   _________________________________________________________________     Yes! the UH60 / S70A Black Hawk v2.0 by BFDG is now available from the X-Plane.Org Store here :   Sikorsky UH60 Black Hawk v2   Price is US$24.95   Requirements: X-Plane 11 (not compatible with X-Plane 10) Windows, Mac or Linux 2Gb VRAM Minimum   Support Thread : BFDG Sikorski UH60L/S70A Black Hawk   Features: UH60 BlackHawk with several 3D models variants  Nice real UH60 Blackhawk sounds High-res custom textures, gauges and systems Animated flight controls, rotor axis and blades Detailed virtual cockpit and cabin with animated switches, knobs and levers Realistic Flight Characteristics Animated gunner windows with retractable M134’s Animated pilot and cargo doors Stability augmentation system Passengers in or out just in a click Hoist down with a rescueman just in a click HRST rope extraction to 5 men just in a click A slung load with some crates in a cargo net just in a click GPS – Autopilot – NOE Flight mode Nice flight model tested by real helo pilots English manual – user friendly – checklists   Installation: Download is now a lighter 440.50meg to an expanded 566mb folder that is positioned in your X-Plane "helicopter" aircraft folder. Note the collective is set on "Throttle 2" and not on the throttle one setting in X-Plane settings.   Documentation: Pilot Operational Handbook - Manual is 29 pages. X-Plane G530 Manual   _____________________________________________________________________________________   Review by Stephen Dutton 14th November 2017 Copyright©2017: X-PlaneReviews   (Disclaimer. All images and text in this review are the work and property of X-PlaneReviews, no sharing or copy of the content is allowed without consent from the author as per copyright conditions)   Review System Specifications: Computer System: Windows  - Intel Core i7 6700K CPU 4.00GHz / 64bit - 16 Gb single 1067 Mhz DDR4 2133 - GeForce GTX 980/SSE2 - Samsung Evo 512gb SSD  Software:   - Windows 10 - X-Plane 11.05 Addons: Saitek x56 Rhino Pro system Joystick and Throttle : Sound - Bose  Soundlink Mini Plugins: Environment Engine by WorldTraffic 3.0 Plugin - US$29.95 : XPRealistic Pro v1.0.9  effects US$19.95 Scenery or Aircraft - Seattle, WA - Gateway to Boeing Country by Tom Curtis  (X-Plane.OrgStore) - US$29.95    
    • It has been awhile since the Aqulia has been updated in June 28 2016, but it is noted as X-Plane11 compatible.
    • I'm assuming that "..version 10.40 or higher" means this will run on X-Plane 11 also?
    • thanks for the deep review Stephen BUT what happen with the sharklets? why not have??...
    • The Sea King is one of my all-time favorite helicopters and I thoroughly enjoyed flying this model in XP 10.  Unfortunately, it needs updating for XP 11 and soon the latest release.  The primary issue seems to be that GPS issue older models had.  I tried tweaking it myself, and it at least runs, but I continue to get rotor shadows that are pitch black and extend to infinity.  That makes the model virtually unusable.  (Which, I guess, might be always true because it is a virtual helicopter, but you know what I mean.)    I fly in VR through FlyInside with Oculus Rift and LeapMotion sensor, so having fully interactive cockpit is also important.  I'm hoping the developer will update the model.
    • Hello, you are right, best idea is to make system of liveries for 777 extended pack. For example,200-airline; 200LR-airline; 300-airline; cargo-airline.It helps user to avoid confusuion with liveries for different aircraft in pack
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