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Aircraft Update - Challenger 300 10.36 by Dden


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Aircraft Update - Challenger 300 10.36 by Dden

There are few very nice private jets to fly in X-Plane, but nothing comes close to Dden's excellent Bombardier Challenger 300. It has been up there since its release in July 2011, four years ago. A few updates has kept the aircraft competitive with the last just In January 2015...  Aircraft Update - Challenger 300 10.31 by Dden

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I was flying to somewhere...  Ireland I think it was only about four weeks ago in the Challenger on some VIP point to point flight. My thoughts were that it still did feel great but is it getting a little tired? Well blow me down and out of the blue (Sky?) comes another update from Dden in 10.36.

First of all the biggest change to the Challenger 300 is really an experiment. X-Plane users have long, long complained that aircraft reflections are dull, the chrome is flat and not shiny (Carenado has made it work) but aircraft are just boring matt sheens. 

Dden has created a plugin system that comes with the Challenger to change all that...  This aircraft is shiny, glossy, slippery and lovely.

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Images don't really do the aircraft justice, it is beautiful. I am personally not a great fan of shiny textures, mostly because to emphasize the shininess developers make them over glossy. The Challenger is just slightly too glossy, but it works very well in context. The hull and wings show all the reflections and with brilliant chrome it is amazing the realism it brings to the aircraft.

But this is still experimental and noted as such, so there are still a few bugs or refining to do at this stage. For some strange reason it conflicts with the new 10.40 extended scenery? and it makes the textures flash...  Very odd.

Turn off the extended scenery and it works fine. I also found the anti-alias (jaggies) was worse on the chrome and couldn't dial it out.

Biggest bonus, is the one only really glaring thing that I didn't like on the Challenger was that bad milky white glow in the dark.

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With the new shiny coat it has been banished and the aircraft now looks perfect after dark, I'll celebrate that!  I couldn't fly the aircraft at night with that creamy skin. So on the ramp you can't help but love it even more because it is so realistic. Note the lights in the steps, they are new as well in 10.36.

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Cockpit is still a really great place to be. A lot of small changes (see change log below) has tweeked all the instruments and glass panels into finer detail even the VOR 2 is now directly on the navigation display (I have spent whole flights trying get that one working). Modeling was always the best in the class but the small text and markings made the panels hard to read, does it look better in 10.36? I'm sure it does, every small detail is now very clear and not so pixel small... 

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The cabin feels slightly more sharper as well, small things like window surrounds and the internal reflections have had a few touches to make them more realistic (and it was good before) finer...  is the word I would use. The mirror is supposed to reflect, but looks the same to me, but the marble and taps are more glossy and better for it.

Lets look at the changelog:

Change log:

  • Fixed MAC versions of plugin (enabled POSIX path)
  • Added some improvements made by S-Jones568
    •   New stair lighting
    •   Lavatory mirror now given reflection, annunciator lights added to lavatory annunciator panel
    •   Galley underlight and reflection added, also drainaway added to galley surface
    •   Cockpit reflections on lavatory doors removed (wasn't right at night)
  •  Added Reflections Pluging (experimental), which adds spherical reflections to 3d model in exterior view
  • Included unofficial patch made by Jack Zero
    • EICAS changes were excluded from the patch for more testing
  • Added MFD commands made by btdoroff
  • Added Flight Director cue command toggle - cl300/pfd/fd_cue_toggle
  • Fixed backlit of the right audio panel
  • Fixed taxi light command logic
  • Added NavSource toggle, the command is cl300/DCP/navsrc_toggle
  • Fixed DME distance display bug
  • Fixed engines behavior after disabling reverse thrust
  • Fixed bus-tie with ground power
  • Added cl300/engines/gust_lock_toggle command
  • Automatic disabling of ratchet sound when XFMC is in AP mode
  • Fixed flight time display

A lot of third party patches were incorporated into this 10.36 update, small but vital tweeks. And a flight from YBCS (home city, Gold Coast) to YSSY Sydney confirmed the obvious, its good.

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It is the small things that stand out flying, certainly all those third party changes and patches have been put all into one update and it shows through have just that little more detail and the aircraft feels even more complete.

A few users have noted that the aircraft is hard to fly...  it is, within context. The Challenger 300 is what I would call a Ferrari, you can't switch from a heavy goods truck (heavy aircraft) or Hyundai sedan (Light GA) to a Ferrari as the car is so different in power and ability, and the Challenger is like that. It also requires very small adjustments to fly really well at its limits (High and Low) it a fine tuning of an aircraft and demands focus and real attention to flight and performance detail. It took me a lot of time to get really proficient at flying the machine, its called Challenger for a reason, it requires a detailed approach and I totally absolutely recommend an add-on throttle with the aircraft for very fine adjustments of speed.

Summary

The Bombardier Challenger 300 was always a class act and still certainly the best personal jet in X-Plane. No doubt it is still up there (no pun intended) as the best and now a slightly better aircraft with the new dynamic reflections and better night visuals, instrument tweeks. d

Detailing, features and the sheer quality of the aircraft mostly leaves you almost speechless and in development is Ddens new Bombardier Global 6000, One great Personal Jet in the Challenger 300 was good, but two!...   and so what a god given time it is to be alive.

 

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The Bombardier Challenger 300 Captain Edition is available now from the New X-Plane.org Store : Bombardier Challenger 300 Captain Edition

Price is US$29.95

If you already own the Bombardier Challenger 300 Captain Edition, then go to your X-Plane.OrgStore account to get the 10.36 upgrade.

For a full X-Plane Reviews release review of the Bombardier Challenger 300 then go here... 

There is now a huge selection of liveries for the aircraft on the X-Plane.Org "Challenger 300 skins" so you won't be short of the right look in civilan or military you would want for the aircraft.

_____________________________________________________________________________________

Systems represented in the Challenger 300 are:

  •     AIR CONDITIONING/PRESSURIZATION
  •     AURAL / VISUAL ALERTS
  •     FLIGHT INSTRUMENTS
  •     FUEL SYSTEM
  •     LIGHTING
  •     ELECTRICAL
  •     FLIGHT CONTROLS
  •     HYDRAULICS
  •     ICE&RAIN PROTECTION
  •     POWERPLANT/FADEC
Documents : Two Manuals with one being a “Quickflight” Guide (updated to 10.36)

Download: 150.80mb : Installed 187.90mb

Developer Support : Dden support thread on the X Plane Org

_____________________________________________________________________________________

Technical Requirements:

Mac, Windows or Linux, X-Plane 10.36 or higher (not compatible with X-Plane 9),1Gb dedicated VRAM recommended

Last updated: July 28th 2015
_____________________________________________________________________________________

Update review by Stephen Dutton

29th July 2015

Copyright©2015: X-Plane Reviews

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  • Stephen featured, unfeatured and featured this topic

The gloss looks amazing. Like you said, not all aircraft need to look this shiny but I think it suits the Challenger really well. I did try putting the plugin into another acf folder but quickly "undid" that particular hack... 

:P Gotta try these things haven't you!

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The problem of this almost perfect aircraft it is not the graphic or the small "bugs". The problem is the missing FMC, that many many users are waiting for from years...and nothing has changed yet.

Well Max, Dden is up to his eyes one line at a time in C++ code trying to fix just that. But the Global 6000 may get a FMC before the Challenger. But it is coming, when...  well.

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