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Aircraft Update : T-7A Red Hawk v1.1 by AOA Simulations


Stephen
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Aircraft Update : T-7A Red Hawk v1.1 by AOA Simulations

 

X-PlaneReviews covered the initial release of the Angle of Attack (AOA) Simulations Boeing/Saab T-7 Red Hawk multi-purpose new generation trainer, the aircraft came out of the winner of the T-X program requirements. Overall it was a great effort in developing an aircraft that is not actually in service yet, but that is the X-Plane experience.

 

Overall though there was a few areas that X-PlaneReviews found a little wanting (you could say rushed to market) that hid the more well done development in recreating the T-7 Red Hawk.  So here is the v1.1 update and quick in the response it is to cover the unfinished and remaining areas that we found a bit wanting.

 

The first area that was very unrefined was the most visual was in the external textures. The textures where overall very Lo-Res, in fact more X-Plane9 than X-Plane11 in look and feel, and X-Plane has come on a very long way since XP9.

 

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In the update v1.1 the textures have been thankfully upgraded. PBR effects have been added as well as better mapping, so there is now a far more thicker realism to the skin of the aircraft...  the Lo-Res jaggies are still there though on the text detail, but overall the effect is far better.

 

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Some wear and tear effect has been added as well that takes away some of that model kit look, in areas the T-7A was just a bit too overall white clean, so a few dirt and oil areas has made the aircraft now feel more realistic with now there also a more detailed normal map has been added for the landing gear. I was not a big fan of the GE F404 after-burning turbofan single engine exhaust outlet and that aspect has not been changed here, but with the far better quality textures around the jetpipe, it does actually look better than it should (or used to) do, a pass now...  yes I think so.

 

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There is still some exposed modeling joints that should be textured and highly visible, maybe in a fix coming in another update?

 

There are four versions now noted for the T-7A/F7A Trainer with the additions of a Red Hawk "EFT" (External Fuel Tanks), Red Hawk "CAS" (Close Air Support) and very nice Red Hawk Navy T-7N.

 

Red Hawk "EFT" has two under wing fuel tanks to increase the fuel load from 4,000lbs (internal) to 8,000lbs and of course the range.

 

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Red Hawk "CAS" (Close Air Support). This version has external stores that includes 4xGBU-53B, 4xAIM 9X, 1xGAU-25mm "Equalizer" centre store.

 

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Red Hawk T-7N (Navy) has also been added to v1.1, and this Naval version includes a tailhook, double nose wheel and a fixed refueling probe...

 

T-7A v1.1 - Update Navy 1.jpgT-7A v1.1 - Update Navy 2.jpgT-7A v1.1 - Update Navy 3.jpgT-7A v1.1 - Update Navy 4.jpg

 

...   Naval livery is super nice! and AOA also provide a A.I. (light) version of the T-7A to use for tag fighting or refueling.

Your thoughts are that a few of the above items could have been incorporated into the aircraft's menus? Yes the Naval version is different enough for a full separate version, but items like fuel probes and fuel tanks would have been easier and more accessible from just a menu selection...  overall there is now Four (Five with the A.I) different aircraft versions?

 

Other updates include larger scale pilots and re-textured (mapped) ejection seats, and with the addition of an engine exhaust cover and wheel chocks in the ground equipment (menu).

 

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AViTab: The AViTab plugin is still weird as you can't hide it? Excellent for VR (Virtual Reality) but just looks odd on the seat in normal space.

 

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Manuals: Thankfully with this version there are now fully finished provided manuals, as it was hard to understand earlier on how the modern weapon system (modes) worked and even the complex Up Front Control (UFC) display needed some explanation, now provided are three guides:

 

1.1 User Guide.pdf

1.1 Quick Look.pdf

1.1 Quick Weapon System.pdf (28 Pages)

 

And thankfully they are all very good, but they all should have been provided in the release version.

 

Still super nice to Fly!

 

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Push up the throttle, pull back the stick and your flying like a bullet... easy peasy. Yes this is a very nice fast military jet to fly. There is not the total deep immersion of say the JustFlight Hawk T1/A, but it is very modern and even fun up here...

 

Cockpit feels different? it is more polished and even shall I say...  realistic! These modern displays are notorious to get any sort of feel and realism into their black and green style panels, but I now think that AOA have done a great job here... even down to (drumroll please!) fingerprints on the screens...

 

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... very nice but the same idea on the upper UFC would benefit more than less use lower main screen, if there are already some grubby marks then it needs more "Smudge" to make them stand out, but otherwise the screens now have a true real depth to them.

 

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IFR - In Flight Refueling is not restricted just to the probe...  there is now the working body version mid-top fuselage.

 

T-7A v1.1 - Update Fly 11.jpgT-7A v1.1 - Update Fly 12.jpg

 

There are now also working "cardinal" heading letters to HUD (situated above the mag heading)...

 

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...  clicking on the OAT (Outside Air Temperature), it will now switch between Fº and Cº.

 

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Keypad has now built in views, I still mostly override these presets, because that is the arrangement I prefer, but they are good to use.

 

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The T7A is absurdly easy to fly...  but is it too easy that in can comfort you into a false sense of airmanship? It is an interesting question?

 

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One thing I don't like still is the switch back on AutoThrust from .M - Mach to Knots, it locks the speed in at 131 knts, and you then can't adjust your Knot speed? I really hate that factor as the only way around it is to disconnect the ATH or to fly totally manually, the 131 knt speed is the final approach speed, but you have no control of the aircraft above that set speed...  the HUD "manual" ILS mode has been added here in this v1.1, but I couldn't use it, because I was locked out on the 131 knts speed for adjustment... so is it all too AUTO? to a natural pilot it just feels weird.

 

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Overall though I really do love flying this aircraft once you do adjust to the Hi-Tech systems of the aircraft, there is still a bit of unrealistic hard banking, go to altitude unrefinement in the aircraft's movements, but overall you fly this machine with a huge smile on your face and thoroughly enjoy totally the overall experience that has benefited hugely from this v1.1 update.

 

T-7A v1.1 - Update Fly 25.jpg

 

Summary

March 2020 saw the release of the Boeing/Saab T-7A Red Hawk v1.1 by AOA Simulations, the Hawk is a new-gen trainer designed for and won the T-X program requirements for this modern multirole trainer/fighter.

 

As with all releases the T-7A was overall very good, but felt underdeveloped in a few areas, mostly with the poor textures and clean detailing. This is the updated version of the T-7A in v1.1 and overall it is a very comprehensive update.

 

Covered in the update has been major improvements to the textures, in quality, mapping and PBR effects, there are still a few Lo-Res text areas, but overall the visual look and feel has been greatly improved, it now looks and feel more realistic than the model kit look of the release version. New textures also cover the undercarriage, ejector seats and better scaled pilots. Added has been separate versions for  EFT - External Fuel Tanks, CAS-Close Air Support and a full version of the Red Hawk Navy T-7N. AOA has also provided a A.I. (light) version to use for tag fighting or refueling.

 

The three missing manuals are also a welcome addition that cover the general overview of the T-7A but also cover a Quick Start and most importantly a guide on how to use the modern weapons system.

 

As usual this update creates an aircraft that really should have been the release version a few months ago, but it is now certainly a far better quality and far better detailed aircraft with a now a lot of usable options, simply brilliant to fly as anyone can control an aircraft this automated, but with more skill and the maximum use of the modern avionic system details can deliver more than expected and can turn your simulation into a serious experience...  now a recommended aircraft.

_______________________________

 

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The  T-7A Red Hawk v1.1 by AOA Simulations is now available from the X-Plane.Org Store:


T-7A Red Hawk

 

Priced at US$36.00

 

Original purchasers of the AOA Red Hawk T-7A can update to v1.1 for free by going to their account at the X-Plane.OrgStore

 

Main features
  • T-7A advanced trainer and F-7A light fighter
  • Highly detailed, fully animated 3D model and weapons
  • PBR textures
Advanced Features
  • SASL 3.8 based plug-in system
  • “Roll to See” dynamic pilot POV camera option (non-VR mode) points pilot camera based on pitch, roll and G forces
  • "Target Track" points, locks and follows AI planes with pilot camera
  • Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System
  • Fly from forward or aft cockpits as student or instructor
  • "Virtual" ground and In-Flight Refueling capability
  • Track-IR and VR compatible
  • AviTab tablet integration (Download AviTab plugin separately)
Cockpit based on preliminary assessment of prototype T-X screen shots
  • Head Up Display
  • Up Front 32 points touch screen control and display panel
  • Large format glass panel with embedded G1000 color moving map
  • Multiple sub panel page options
  • Dedicated engine data display
Navigation
  • Fully autopilot control thru Up Front Control panel
  • Dual ADF
  • GPS 
  • Nav1 & 2 VOR / ILS
  • Low altitude, all weather Terrain Following
Radar
  • Air to air, with radar lock on AI targets
  • Dedicated threat situational awareness cockpit display
  • Terrain mapping radar
Weapon system
  • Master jettison switch
  • Weapon display panel
  • 4 x AIM-9X Infrared A2A missiles
  • 8 x Small Diameter Bomb II's
  • GPS aim point bombing mode
  • Gun Pod
Miscellaneous
  • FMOD Sounds, aural warnings
  • Particle systems effects
  • Animated ejection sequence
  • Ground support equipment
  • Removable test probe (T-X prototype)
  • Three liveries
  • Additional liveries available free on X-Plane.org download manager
  • Paint kit
  • Download Quick Look PDF from our support page for a preview of the aircraft

 

Requirements

X-Plane 11

4Gb VRAM Video Card Minimum - 8GB+ VRAM Recommended
Download Size: 447 MB
Current and Review version: v1.1 (May 30th 2020) 
 
Changelog v1.1

________________________________

 

Update Review by Stephen Dutton 

26th June 2020

Copyright©2020 : X-Plane Reviews 

  

(Disclaimer. All images and text in this preview 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 - 32 Gb single 1067 Mhz DDR4 2133 - ASUS GeForce GTX 1080 8Gb - Samsung Evo 1TB SSD 

Software:   - Windows 10 - X-Plane 11.41 and tested in X-Plane11.50b11

Addons: Saitek x56 Rhino Pro system Joystick and Throttle : Sound - Bose  Soundlink Mini

Plugins: None

Scenery or Aircraft

- KRSW - Southwest Florida International Airport by Aerosoft  (X-Plane.OrgStore) US$24.95



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