Lightman Posted August 11, 2022 Report Share Posted August 11, 2022 Aircraft Update Review: Magknight 787 v1.8 Introduction & History The Boeing 787 Dreamliner is perhaps one of the more well-known aircraft of the 21st century. Designed from the ground up as a replacement for the existing 767 line, its goal was to be the dream plane for pilots, operators, and passengers alike. With its streamlined flight deck, large screen displays, and perhaps the nicest feature, the brand new HGS displays for both the Captain and FO, a first in commercial airliners. For the passenger experience, the large windows, sweeping wings, and state-of-the-art pressurization system, it was certainly a welcomed improvement over its older 767 predecessor. For the airlines, the Dreamliner opened the doors to point to point flights, plus new direct flights to airports previously only reached by connecting flights, and with a range of 7,300 and 7,560nm for the 787-8 and -9, it has opened the doors to direct point to point flights. The Magknight 787 has been in continuous development since 2018, and it has certainly shaped into a real promising representation of the 787, however, there are still major issues which haven’t been redone yet, but we will go over these in the review. Let’s get started! Documentation & First Impressions The download and installation of the Magknight 787 is standard to that of almost any aircraft for X-Plane 11, with the aircraft being self-contained in a single folder. Version 1.8 brings the addition of the shorter 787-8, and upon first loading the flight I am greeted with the very familiar cockpit of the 787 with its unmistakable features, including that HGS, which I was quite excited to use as the only other HGS equipped airliner in the sim is the 737 by Zibo or Levelup and it is sadly not the most usable. My hopes were immediately dashed however as it turns out the HGS isn’t modelled in X-Plane 11 and will only be added for X-Plane 12, so the waiting game to use it begins, and I can only hope it gets the collimated treatment that it so deserves. Upon first inspection, the cockpit looks fantastic, and the exterior even better, so I’ve got no complaints there! Electronic Flight Bag The 787 like all new generation Boeing wide bodies is equipped with an EFB to the left knee of the pilot, and I was eager to check it out to compare with the Boeing EFB I know from the PMDG 747 and 777. Powering it on I was greeted with a somewhat decent representation and at first, it looked great, however, I quickly realized it was missing some features. It did still have the TO and LDG performance calculator which I could use to pull the data to plug into the FMC which is the main feature I use. Exterior Model & Texturing The exterior model of the 787 is for me one of the highlights of the aircraft. It looks really well done, with a well-detailed bump map, the details of the composite fuselage really stand out, and the wings look fantastic. The shaping of the nose has much improved over previous versions, and the overall look of the airplane has come up to a new level for Magknight. The overall shape of the airplane is really really well done and I appreciate the work that has gone into the airplane’s overall shape. The details are where it degrades in quality however, and the landing gear is especially lacking in detail compared with its realworld counterpart. The main struts and bogeys were simplified, and it sadly shows, but with a revamp of the gear that can be resolved. The other issue with the shaping I noticed was the jagged edges of the fuselage and engine shaping. I haven’t noticed it on other aircraft as much as on the Magknight, but it’s only visible when you’re looking for it. Overall, they did a good job with the exterior model. Interior Model & Texturing The Interior model and texture which was redone in v1.6 looks far better than its predecessor and I’m happy to say it still looks fantastic. I really like the look of the real 787 cockpit, and this modeled version does it justice. The modeling of the switches, levers and other small items is done to a payware quality. The overall cockpit geometry is quite accurate though I don’t have a way to measure it, sorry. The best part that makes the cockpit stand out is the texture work; it looks simply awesome, and really brings the already good cockpit model to life, but sadly it gets let down by the next section. Avionics Options & Systems While still being continuously updated, the Magknight 787 is in the end a work in progress payware and the avionics and systems depth really solidifies that, even with the beautiful looking exterior and interior model. First the positives. The displays look crisp, and the main systems are modeled allowing you to make a full flight, however too far outside the limits of a simple flight and the issues start showing. The aircraft is improving, however it still uses the default X-Plane FMC, and that really limits its functionality, and it is quite evident in the FMC’s abilities. When inputting the flight data, the FMC works fine and like I’d expect it to. The PERF page isn’t really modeled that well, the Thrust LIM page isn’t modeled at all, and the TO page isn’t either. This really threw me through a loop as coming from the Qualitywings 787 it was quite a different experience. The Vspeeds are inputted through the EFB rather than the FMC, which is incorrect but oh well, hopefully, it will be corrected in the future. The next issue was the ND. While it looks good, the ND’s are limited in functionality. The well-known large screen map display in the 787 hasn’t been added yet, and it is impossible to pull it up, leaving you only the half display map option. Plan view isn’t yet implemented either which makes it a bit of a guessing game when planning your flight to find a waypoint if you need to. The options for displaying info on the ND is also quite limited and your options are not great. The last major issue I found with the ND is the path drawing on your flightplan. With the Magknight, only the line to your next waypoint is in magenta, with all following lines being white which is incorrect. These are the large issues I found on my flights with the 787 in terms of displays and systems, but the autopilot has issues from time to time, though not often, and on my flight from KSFO to EDDF, it didn’t have any problems. I hope these issues will be corrected with time and I fully believe they will, but they are for the time being still large issues that hinder the experience. Flight Characteristics & Sounds The flight model is quite interesting for me. On one hand, it feels quite solid, and yet on the other, it feels very mushy and hard to control. At slow speeds, namely on approach, it likes to wander and twist when adding aileron input, so keep that in mind on your approaches. In most other areas of flight, it feels quite good but still different from the Qualitywings 787 I came from. That is a different bag however and it’s not completely fair to compare the two. I do think it has a few issues with the aileron control but all in all, it’s not half bad and is easily flyable which is a good plus, especially if you like to hand fly your approaches. Conclusion The Magknight 787 is going to be difficult to sum up for me. It has a great model, and beautiful VC, yet the systems let it down so much. The overall experience could be so much better if Magknight put their resources into improving the avionics and flight deck of the 787, and that’s what this addon deserves. I will certainly continue following this aircraft, but I can only wonder what Magknight has planned to improve this aircraft and keep it competitive for X-Plane 12, especially with the 787 in development from Flight Factor. So, the big question is, is this aircraft worth the $44.95 price tag? That I will leave up to you the consumer to decide. I really think it’s quite a good looking aircraft, but if that is all it is right now, then it sadly falls into a category many developers have slumped into with MSFS, eye candy with bad systems simulation. The shortcoming of the Magknight 787 is its reliance on default X-Plane 11 systems, and if they free themselves from that, I see this airplane becoming way better than it currently is. I would treat this as an investment, much in the same way as the SSG 747-8. You’re buying a work in progress addon, one that is flyable, but not to the quality of Flight Factor, or Toliss, etc. I want to be honest in my reviews, and I really hope Magknight can upgrade their avionics, and add that HGS so that it does justice to the amazing model they built for it. _______________________________ The Magknight 787: Aviator's Edition v1.8.0 is now available from the X-Plane.Org Store here: Magknight 787: Aviator's Edition Price at time of writing US$44.95 Requirements X-Plane 11 Free update to X-Plane 12 - when available Windows, Mac or Linux 4 GB VRAM Minimum - 8 GB+ VRAM recommended Download Size: 1 GB Current version : 1.8 (May 23rd 2022) Review System Specifications Windows 11 Ryzen 5800x RTX3070ti, 32GB RAM Changelog v1.8.0 Changelog v1.8.txt Full changelog details are here __________________________________ Aircraft Review by Joshua Moore 11th August 2022 Copyright©2022: X-Plane Reviews (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. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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