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Xplane Scenery : HD mesh v2.0 by Alpilotx


Wycliffe
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X-Plane 10 HD Mesh scenery v.2.0 by Alpilotx

 

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Last week I mentioned that I was downloading this incredible freeware package and that it was taking a little bit of time to just download Wales, in fact it was an overnight download taking 5 hours. since then I have bought a membership to one of the sites hosting and the downloads take only minutes now which is a lot better I can assure you. As I now have had a chance to spend a little more time with the mesh I thought i might write a little more than just the announcement that I made last week. 

 

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Here is the product information from the Alpilotx website:-

X-Plane 10 HD Scenery Mesh v2 is an update to the older v1 HD Mesh (and a replacement of the default Global Scenery) and brings a lot of improvements in many areas:

  • It is a much higher resolution base mesh (more, smaller triangles) compared to the default Global Scenery which ships with X-Plane 10 (one could say: approximately 2-3-times more dense)
  • The higher resolution mesh allows for a much more detailed representation of the elevation profile of the landscape
  • The higher resolution mesh allows a much more detailed/exact representation of the underlying landclass data (because of the smaller triangles, which can follow landclass changes in the raw data more closely)
  • It is based on a completely new Openstreetmap (OSM) data (approximately end of September 2013), which brings (compared to default Global Scenery) a lot of improvements in:
    • water features (lakes, rivers, coastline) – many previously missing water features are now finally there
    • roads
    • railroads
    • power lines
    • urban park areas
  • It includes line rivers from OSM (not just polygons as before) tagged waterway=river which improves the landscape in most regions quite a bit
  • Uses improved urban zoning (thanks to improved algorithms in the scenery generator)
  • Many smaller and larger landclass data improvements
    • completely replaced the landclass data for Canada (big improvements)
    • improved forest density representation in Europe (changed the sparse / dense classification)
    • some new classes added (in many regions), like: moraines, riverbeds, mining/dump sites
    • added differentiation between ice (perennial) and snow (more temporal) to have an even more detailed representation of mountains. There is a nice description of this by Albert (the texture master) on x-plane.org: follow this link
    • added differentiation between irrigated / non-irrigated crops (in some regions – like the USA etc.)
  • Completely replaced the elevation data with viewfinderpanoramas.org (if yew have a few cents, donate to that guy!). This doesn’t changes much in areas which were already great, but fixes some which were really hosed.
  • Latest airport data (2013.10) boundaries used, to have up to date airport areas.

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Alpilotx. Andras Fabian, has been working with xplane for a number of years now and has been responsible for the default terrain mesh, in a recent interview he gives some insight as to what motivated him to do scenery work ad if I recall it was the fact that Xplane8 could portray real forests that sparked his interest. http://www.flightsim.com/vbfs/content.php?13946-Interview-With-Andras-Fabian/view/1

  

I'm happy that he did start tinkering (his word) with the program because that has led us to the happy state we find ourselves in now, a terrain mesh which nearly covers the whole world for free. Created using the most up to date and reliable geodata available, and Andras is very good at locating the best data there is. I believe that total download is close to 55gb of data which is a huge amount and unless you have a very fast broadband connection with unlimited bandwidth it is going to take a while to download. 

 

 

Already some individuals have downloaded the whole package and placed them on torrent sites. I prefer not to use torrent sites as I really don't trust them to offer clean downloads. If you trust the torrent site then of course use that method. 

 

installation is very easy and instructions are included with each package you download so you cant go wrong, what I particularly like is that you simply install the packages to your custom scenery folder, you don't have to delete or over write the default scenery because of the way that xplane manages custom scenery it always becomes the first scenery installed. If you decide you don't like the terrain mesh simply delete it restart xplane and the default terrain mesh will be there.

 

After installation you don't have to do anything else, it's just load up and fly.  Andras does say on his site that you might have to adjust settings because the terrain mesh can have an effect on FPS but to be honest I saw no hit at all.

 

These images do not do justice to the scenery at all, the problem with taking screenshots is that everything looks flat and xplane is not flat and this fantastic terrain mesg is not flat either, I took only a quick flight around LOWI during which my wife walked into the study/mancave/flightdeck and you know what even she said "WOW that looks good, how much did you pay for that" when I said it was free she gave me a kiss and walked out. Now that is well worth the download time alone lol.

 

Whats more she came back with a wee dram of my finest single malt. I know it's coming up to christmas but i have to think she is after something. 

 

Whichever way you look your monitor is full of WOW moments especially when you fly over somewhere mountainous, I did do a flight over Snowdon in North Wales, and once again this took my breath away especially as I have the UK photoscenery. So my friends I suggest you get downloading, but as I said in my intro piece just download one or two areas just to get yourself going. 

 

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I haven't downloaded any of the America's but I have got all of Europe, I mostly fly in Europe so there is little point in getting the mesh for across the pond, although  the lure of the Rockies might be to much and I will download it after all. 

 

Wycliffe

 

Developer Site : X-Plane 10 - Alpilotxnet

 

©X-Plane-Reviews 2013

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