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Aircraft Review : C340 ll HD Series XP11 by Carenado

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Aircraft Review : C340 ll HD Series XP11 by Carenado

 

We have all enjoyed that moment, it signifies freedom, and the chains have been cast aside for awhile. It is the end of another long day, and in my case a challenging aircraft to fly and review and there was still a few ends to tie up before the work is finished. Waiting patiently is the next review of Carenado's C340 ll, and so I load it up and pre-pep the aircraft for a flight from Shoreham EGKA on the Southern English coast to Dublin EIDW on Ireland's east coast. It is a simple route via VOR to VOR that is noted up and the whole exercise to just simply just to see what the aircraft is all about and how it flies...

 

First VOR is SAM (113.35) and so after taking off from EGKA's RWY 20, I direct the aircraft to a heading of 290º and trim the aircraft up. My altitude is going to be 15,000ft, so the official rate of climb is 1,650 ft/min (8.38 m/s), but the C340 will easily sit on 1,500 fpm for the first 10,000ft until I reset it for 900 fpm for the last 5,000 ft or so, I get to altitude around SAM and then direct the aircraft towards BND (Boscome Down 108.20) and with the aircraft settled I head back to finish off the other waiting review.

 

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As I work the C340 ll purrs it's way over the western England and is heading towards Wales, a quick check of the VOR heading and fuel consumption and I head back and finish off the review... Soon I am done in the reviewing and all the work for the day.

 

The odd thing in reviewing is that you don't actual have time to fly, yes you fly everything but always in the context of the review, so everything is focused on that aspect, and you are messing everything around or heavily changing X-Plane's settings to get the maximum out of the simulator and best performance out of the aircraft or scenery you are reviewing (worse if it is plugin).

 

But now I am finally done for the day, and the C340 ll is still purring along at 180 knts and the indicated TAS ground speed of 220 quite nicely...

 

It is all very nice indeed in here as well.

 

C340 ll_XP11 Internal 1.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Internal 2.jpg

 

Panel layout is very similar to the 208 Caravan, as that is a Cessna as well. In the rear it is a luxury four seat club layout, all soft pile white leather, and all very comfortable. It is an aircraft cabin that is not too over adorned with fittings, so it all feels clean, plush and modern.

 

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The work table is animated with two actions, one to open the top panel and two to pull out the table on the right side of the aircraft...

 

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....  but I am not in here to work, so I slide it all away again. Beacon VOR is next (BCN 117.45).

 

Instrument Panel

The cockpit is like the sportscar version to the Caravan's utility highset feel, but they are both still very familiar with the creamish backgournd and center pedestal arrangement, and the engine dials are set out here along to top slightly to the right compared to the Caravan's vertical twin dial arrangement.

 

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The pilot's instrument package is quite complex and heavily detailed. Standard Six instruments are Airspeed Indicator, Artificial Horizon and the Attitude Indicator positioned top, and the Turn Coordinator, Heading Dial with built-in Course Deviation Bar (CDI) centre and the Vertical Speed Indicator complete the lower set. Left of the SS is the OAT (Outside Temp) top and Astrotech Chronometer below. Right of the SS is the VOR 2 OBS and EDM JPI 760 digital readout and lean find display. Very top of the panel is the Prop anti-ice amp meter, Autopilot display and Bendix/King VOR 2 distance/speed/time display.

 

Lower panel has a very nice and again a very similar set to the Caravan of annunciators that can be tested (arrowed left), lower panel is the oxygen dials and adjustable settings (arrowed right) to keep the cabin at the right pressure as you have a 29,800 ft (9,085 m) ceiling in the C340 ll, on returning back to the ground the system can be also be depressurised via a switch.

 

C340 ll_XP11 Internal 9.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Internal 10.jpg

 

Digital Fuel Flow readout for each engine and fuel remaining display is left and adjustable radar altitude dial is right.

 

Copilot's side is quite sparse of flying instruments, and most positioned here are in the back up capacity. Airspeed Indicator, Artificial Horizon and the Attitude Indicator are central, with a heading (aircraft silhouette style) and Vertical Speed Indicator... a ADF pointer is left. Top right panel is a Alcor EGT (Exhaust Gas Temperature) readout and Suction dial.

 

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The aircraft has a very interesting if complex fuel system. Main wing tanks are 50 Gal each and those tanks are the "(Wing) Tip Tanks" and not the in the wing tanks. The inner wing tanks here are the backup "Aux" tanks 31 Gal each, so you have to remember which tanks you are feeding from. On selecting the "Aux" via the floor positioned fuel selector, then if the inner wing aux tanks are selected there are two lights shown (arrowed) for each of the tanks above the fuel gauge, and the gauge is now showing the "Aux" quantity of fuel and not the main fuel quantity. All fuel on each of the wingtip tanks will crossfeed with the opposite tank, but the "Aux" tanks don't crossfeed, and the full fuel capacity is 162 US gallons.

The "Aux" fuel pumps can be set to "High" or "Low" but when in flight it is best to switch over in the "low" boost setting to stop any fluctuations of fuel supply. Lower flap selection is noted as UP - 15º (168 kias) - 30º (124 kias) - 45º, and the flap selector can be hard to see from the pilot's position.

 

The engine dials are all twin needle (L & R) with left to right Manifold Pressure, RPM, Fuel Flow...  then there is a set of gauges for each engine covering Oil Pressure, CYL (Cylinder) and Oil Temperatures.

 

C340 ll_XP11 Internal 13.jpg

 

Equipment stack is just the basics, with a standard issue Garmin 347 audio panel top and two X-Plane Garmin GN350 GPS system's (COM 1/ NAV 1 - COM 2 / NAV 2) below. Then there is a Bendix/King units KR87 TSO ADF and a Garmin GTX 320 transponder below. The crappy basic Bendix/King weather radar rounds out the avionics. The RealityXP's GTN750 can also be used if you have that option.

 

The pilot's left side panel is for electrical. Internal instrument and avionics lighting sliders are lovely and easy to use, external switches are below. The landing light switch acts rather odd? It wants to be a three way but it is actually only a two way operation. This in case it is caused by me having a switch on my Saitek throttle for switching the lights on and off, but the lights also retract into the wing? so my throttle switch will turn them off, but I still have to throw the panel switch to retract the lights themselves, a three way switch would have worked better. There is a very nice Cessna branded AMPS/Volts meter that is switchable.

 

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Right panel is the Air-Conditioner switches, Oxygen cylinder quantity and Hobbs hour meter. Note the very nice Bose branded headset interface.

 

Twin yokes are both beefy and in the "I just want to hold them" category, beautiful is to be almost perfect...  sadly or oddly for Carenado the usual electric trim thumb switches don't work?

 

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Center pedestal is almost the exact same as on the Caravan. Top twin sets of levers to cover: Throttles, RPM and Mixtures, side large vertical trim wheel and rudder trim is set in lower and by a roll trim knob. Autopilot is very basic but thankfully pops-up and is also scalable.

 

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Two push/pull levers bottom opens or closes the engine vents, but use with caution and watch the engine temperatures.

 

Lighting

Lighting is very good, if beautiful as well.... importantly you have very clear instruments. Like the Caravan the instruments are lit indirectly, which gives it all a nice glow to the panel...

 

C340 ll_XP11 Lighting 1.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Lighting 2.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Lighting 3.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Lighting 4.jpg

 

...  and there is a nice blue glow created by an overhead blue light, and two overhead lights that can only be adjusted directly. There is switch called "Courtesy Light" but I couldn't see or find what it did?

 

Cabin lighting is excellent with four fully adjustable spot lights and one for each seat.

 

C340 ll_XP11 Lighting 5.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Lighting 6.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Lighting 7.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Lighting 8.jpg

 

The rear entrance door had the odd reflections of the instrument panel? But otherwise the window reflections are excellent. External lighting is also very good with the now standard neon strobes, two offset beacons and navigation lights.

 

C340 ll_XP11 Lighting 9.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Lighting 10.jpg

 

When the wingtip landing lights are extended they reflect nicely on the underwing and tip-tanks... taxi light is built into the front wheel strut and switches off on gear retraction.

 

But I am not at 15,000ft to do a review, the work today is now done....

 

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...   nope, and this is my time.  This is where we came in, I'm flying now as if I am driving home, that carefree moment that you are tired but happy the day is done, you are taking it all in, and now just flying in X-Plane as it should be. Below the English countryside passes by slowly, and the sweet afternoon light fills the cockpit... The C340 ll is doing all the work.

 

C340 ll_XP11 Flying 3.jpg

 

It is time for reflection and the pure joy of flying without the stress, and the C340 ll is very much like that, it is calming and very easy to live with, "this is a damn nice aeroplane". X-Plane is behaving as well, no jutters, no pops... the weather is calm and comforting, it is just you and the sky and you feel it will all go on forever.

 

Time for another heading change and this time at STU or Strumble (113.10) and the final hard turn towards Dublin and out over the Irish Sea...

 

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Quality is a known with Carenado, it is usually excellent and the C340 ll does also not disappoint here either. The industry-standard software used by the film and gaming industries is evident in the shine and depth of the Physically Based Rendering materials and textures throughout the aircraft, detailing is again first rate as is the lovely chrome spinners and pitot probes. Glass is reflective and perfectly formed, it is hard to believe now in that in the early days on how bad real reflective glass was, now we take this quality as normal.

 

I really do like the look and feel of the C340 ll, as it is clean and sleek, it feels more like a twin-engined version of a private small jet in say a Lear than a GA.

 

C340 ll_XP11 Flying 5.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Flying 6.jpg

 

The C340 is nearly as quick as well with a maximum speed of 244 kn (279 mph, 452 km/h) and with those twin large bulbous wing-tanks you get a range of 1,406 nmi (1,606 mi, 2,603 km) at an economy cruising speed.

 

But guilded moments can't last forever, as moments don't last either or they never do...

 

Time to take control as Dublin is coming near.

 

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I set my descent at minus 1,400 fpm, but pull the throttles back over half way and the alarm goes off!, I need less speed than that? I Go into the circuit to land from the North on EIDW's RWY 16 and level off about 3,000 ft to roll back the speed. Dublin passes to my left...

 

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Turn to approach and heading 16º for the Rwy

 

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I drop the gear to get access to the flaps and to be able to lower my approach speed. Undercarriage detail is excellent, as is the extraction (and retraction) of the gear. The flaps are unusual in that they are under of the rear of the engine cowls, but a bonus is that one setting to 15º and the flaps act like airbrakes and control or slow the speed until you can get a more 30º setting and the slower 110 knts in speed, the transition of the flaps to speed is very good with no lift or stall.

 

C340 ll_XP11 Flying 13.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Flying 14.jpg

 

Internal construction detail in the flap box is very good and highly realistic, as is the nice rear cowl on the front landing gear strut...

 

C340 ll_XP11 Flying 15.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Flying 16.jpg

 

...  final transition to full 45º flap and a nice 100 knt final approach speed is again effortless, the aircraft is very stable on approach.

 

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Like all X-Plane11 aircraft, then throttle control is crucial, as even slight adjustments can gain or lose you height, but don't get me wrong the C340 ll is very easy to fly at this point, and you can put it down anywhere easily.

 

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82 knots is stall but I was 80 knts and still in control to go straight into the flare.

 

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There is no reverse prop thrust, so it is a little hard on the brakes...  or a long run off is needed to flatten out the speed.

 

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Dublin is very busy today... the Ryanair pilots strike must be finally over?

 

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Menus

The C340 ll comes with the standard three tab Carenado menu.

 

C340 ll_XP11 Menu 1.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Menu 2.jpg

 

The menu tabs are on the left lower screen. A ) is for the pop-up Autopilot panel. This is a 2 Axis Autopilot panel which can be scaled for size. C ) Is the standard Carenado ten preselected Views, Field of View and Volume panel. And O ) is the Options panel.

 

Options include Window and Instrument reflections. The Static elements provided here are still quite basic with only two cones, wheel chocks (front only) engine inlet covers and having no front flag pitot covers is being a bit mean? The twin highly realistic (and new) animated pilots do disappear when you activate the static elements.

 

Doors opening include the main rear passenger door and four...  yes four separate Baggage doors with two front nose lockers and those interesting lockers in the rear of each of the engine cowlings.

 

C340 ll_XP11 Menu 3.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Menu 4.jpg

 

Liveries

One blank and four liveries is quite basic, they are all very good and very high quality, but all a bit samey. They include beige, Bluegold, gray and red.

 

C340 ll_XP11 Livery blank.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Livery N796A.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Livery C-GBDA.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Livery N553F.jpgC340 ll_XP11 Livery N5229T.jpg

 

Summary

Nice medium twin engined aircraft are numerous now in X-Plane and even Carenado's range is also now quite a large one. Do we really need another twin? of course we do...  as this excellent Cessna is a real beaut of an aircraft.

 

All the usual Carenado highlights are here in, great quality, amazing detail and loads of great features and aircraft interaction. Lighting is excellent as are the quality reflections and overall the C340 ll flies very, very well with the X-Plane11 dynamics.

 

Overall it is a "damn" nice aircraft and in reality the review summed up the aircraft. I was tired, over the work for the day and just flopped into the aircraft. I flew it and actually rested as I enjoyed the aircraft immensely as it purred along over the south coast of England in sunny summer skies and took me away from the long day, it was shame that I had to actually land in Dublin...   

 

_____________________________________________________________________________________
 

X-Plane Store logo sm.jpg

 

The C340 ll HD Series XP11 by Carenado is a new release for X-Plane11 and is available here at the X-Plane.OrgStore

 

C340 ll HD Series XP11

 

Price is US$32.95

 

This aircraft is noted as a new aircraft for X-Plane11, and not an upgrade from the X-Plane10 C340 ll version, so a full cost for ownership is required.

 

The aircraft is directly available from Carenado as well.

  
Special Features
  • Version 1.1 : Only for X-Plane 11
  • Support for RealityXP's GTN750* (integrated into 3D cockpit, when available)
  • State-of-the-art configurable FPS-friendly logic system
  • Fully VR compatible
  • Full PBR (Superb material shines and reflections)
Features
  • Specially designed engine dynamics for X-Plane 11
  • Flight physics optimized for X-Plane 11 standards
  • Ground handling adapted for X-Plane 11 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 GNS430 (FPS friendly)
  • 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
Version 1.1 (last updated August 23rd 2018)
Download Size: 500Mb
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Installation:

Download for the C340 ll HD Series XP11 Series is 475.85mb and the unzipped file is deposited in the "General Aviation" X-Plane folder at 550.70mb.

Key authorisation and a restart is required.

 

Documents:

There is Normal and Emergency procedures (checklists), excellent sets of reference and performance tables. But no full manual. There is a full manual of the C340 ll fuel system.

 

  • C340 Fuel System.pdf
  • C340 Normal _ Emergency Procedures - Performance Tables.pdf
  • C340 Reference.pdf
  • Carenado Copyright.pdf
  • Credits.pdf
  • Recommended settings XP11.pdf

 

_____________________________________________________________________________________

 

Review by Stephen Dutton 
25th August 2018
Copyright©2018: 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 - ASUS GeForce GTX 1080 8Gb - Samsung Evo 512gb SSD 

Software:   - Windows 10 - X-Plane 11.25

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

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

- EGKA - Shoreham - Brighton City Airport by NKdesign (X-Plane.orgStore) US$15.00

- EIDW - Airport Dublin V2 by Aerosoft (X-Plane.OrgStore) - US$24.95

  

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Great I bought it last night and Carendo manual was really thin on the systems so I downloaded this excellent manual from SimCom. http://www.grayskies.info/DOWNLOADS/C340/SimCom/Cessna 340A_Cessna 340A Reference Manual_Rev 0.pdf.pdf

 

and checklist http://www.grayskies.info/DOWNLOADS/C340/SimCom/Cessna 340A_Cessna340-N-E Proc Short Cklst_Rev3_09 25-15.pdf.pdf

 

A must have! I’d love to fly this bird in real life. Biggest I flew was only a Piper Aztec E. I also have been reading input from current owners. She’s a bit of a maintenance Queen. 

With GTN 750 integration it is really fun to fly and manage the fuel correctly!

 

Take a look at a refurbished one from Pristine airplanes! 

 

http://pristineairplanes.com/listing/1977-cessna-340a-for-sale/

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