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Stephen

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Stephen last won the day on May 31

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About Stephen

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    Stephen
  • Birthday 11/08/1956

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  1. Behind the Screen : May 2020 The month of May had a bit of everything, but the biggest overwhelming point was that how far we have really come in simulation. This aspect comes in, in various ways, but the march into the future just continues. One aspect that I loved in May was actually an old X-Plane feature, this was reflections. Reflections got sidelined for me about five years ago as the processing pressure built and the complexity came in... framerate rules! You couldn't have this processor intensive feature running as it sucked too much computing power away from the simulator, was it really a significant requirement in the simulator, no not really compared to the other required default effects you wanted running, so the slider went to zero and stayed there. Vulkan changed all that. Suddenly you had all this extra processing power and it turned into an absolute field day of options, nice options. Notably I have never been a greedy user, more than willing to except a more benign simulation than a slideshow, but there are some options or features that I can not have running, hence the above acceptance of a certain loss of what the Americans call "Eye Candy", and that is okay. So when Vulkan gave your graphics a huge new working space, then the sliders went up and the results are really good, the only compromise has been the shadows on scenery feature, that option was just one expense too far, a very much a nice to have, but the framerate loss is just not worth it.... but back to reflections. I was doodling about in the Italian Dolomites for the ever expanding "Dolomite 3D" series from Frank Dainese and Fabio Bellini, all are worth visiting and the concept is now with this third installment and now covering a significantly huge area, but the Belluno pack had something else I didn't have in the earlier two packages and that was reflections. It felt so much more different, at first I couldn't understand what was actually different as the Belluno pack is not that much in context any different from the first two Dolomite packages, but then I realised the mountains were reflecting into or onto the lakes and rivers. The extra effect now is mesmerising and much more highly realistic as that just this one extra feature could produce such a significant change to the visual look of the simulator... flying low over the lakes the mountains reflected below, then moving to the newly released (excellent) Copenhagen XP scenery you also got a lot of bonuses, mostly from the Øresund Bridge of which at dusk created some really amazing images, and brought back to me such earlier X-Plane scenes of lights set around harbours and reflecting into the water. It was at this point I suddenly really realised how much I missed the feature, a small thing no doubt, but an important one to create that full visual aspect of realism, and yes I know that I over use the words "Realism" and "Realistic", but that is the constant goal in recreating the real world on a computer screen. I marveled at the port reflections last month in Barcelona, and now most coasts have a reflection boundary that just nicely smooths out the edges, so if you can go that extra processing mile then put the slider up and you won't be disappointed. Notably Vulkan will change that realism aspect, and give you more power for less. But it is in the dynamic areas it will have a bigger impact, how much so is to wonder if the changes we have seen since X-Plane9, that in five years you can't even compare the visual dynamics of a fully featured X-Plane 11 visual scene, not only in the cockpit with its extraordinary light and shadows, but the complexity of light shading on scenery. Again the FlyTampa Copenhagen's use of metal and glass was simply awe-inspiring and the same excellent visuals are replicated in many a review. Not all shading works though, notably are some trees that come across as one dimensional, light on one side but dark on the other you don't get any realism but the cardboard cutout effect. Obviously a hard one to fix because trees with their sheer numbers have to have a very minute footprint, so they can't be complex. However I still think it is worth investigating why some work extremely well in the light and shadow effect but others trees look simply awful, worse is when the scenery developer is too lazy to match them up. To a point Vulkan has given us some breathing space. The "Turing" Raytracing graphic cards are out of most but for only the hardcore users in cost, and so is the Radeon RX 5700 series which a little cheaper... the coming Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 is said to be also thankfully cheaper. So the question is what is the next step, or with the extreme changes we have already been through put us into a position were we are already at a high point. Don't send me comments on how games are going to be more extreme, more detailed and come with more lighting effects... because simulation is a very different engine than the boxed in world of a game, anyway the word around is that even gaming is reaching a point that you must not soon expect the same huge leaps in graphic power that has been done over the last ten years, as it is like running the four minute mile the closer you get to line then the harder it is to make a bigger difference on the clock. Yes there will be advancement, but the changes will be slower and longer. Again in Vulkan the Graphic Card is now not the be and end all of your computer visual power either. As you used to have spent months dissecting graphic card specifications in relation to your hardware, there now comes the issue of having the right processing chips as well, because in Vulkan they now both count big time, and finding the perfect running mates will bring you benefits, and so having odd processor combinations will of course mean one is working far harder than the other. I think there needs to be some guidance here in that aspect, as even my eyes blur at the specifications and overwhelming details of processors and the fastest set up for "Tour of Duty" is very different for the current single piping of X-Plane. But what of the future now with Vulkan almost in vogue... all Laminar's focus has been on this one absolute goal, sadly the Vegas Expo has been called off, so there will be now no announcements from Nevada. My guess is that Laminar will give a huge sigh of relief on that one, as time is not in their pocket, but I do think they have a few things interesting in coming. On that note it is surprising in the comments is that how many users are running their X-Plane simulations (mostly with the sliders at max) at or in a lot of cases below the 19 frame threshold, some are even doing their simulations in single digits, just so they can have the full visual impact! Now that is just simply crazy, worse is the grind on your graphic card, as it will burn out if you continue with that high cost of grinding through frame after frame and that is an expensive fix, what are they doing? The new VRAM Profiler (Menu/Developer/Show VRAM profiler) gives you now a view into this processing world, and how much processing is taken up on items that have absolutely nothing to do with your current simulation? In mine I have the B777 taking up 1.35mb of processing power by just sitting in my aircraft folder? you work that out, so that came out, as did five other aircraft using up processing power for doing absolutely nothing either? go on look at your own profiler, you will be really shocked at what you are non-running? It is going to be interesting on how developers are going to have to make their products more compliant to the simulator in this aspect. On the Vulkan Beta it is now getting there and even close to a RC or Release Candidate. Most of the aircraft and plugins have also been adjusted including the ToLiSS A319/A321 series, I personally really missed the Airbuses and was very excited to get them back, the FlightFactor A320 Ultimate is still MIA and waiting for the final v11.50 release of which I makes me want it more. As is for the most missing aspect of my simulation package and that is xEnviro, I can't even use my usual fallback v1.07 in Vulkan and that is a real pain as the default weather look is very bland (meaning boring) no matter which way you look at it, but I am not holding my breath for xEnviro to update either, but I really miss it... a lot. A note that June is X-Plane birthday month, not the actual simulator itself but for the X-Plane.Org, which was started 20 years ago, yes you read that right in twenty years ago. Would X-Plane as a simulator still be a going concern without the .Org? Personally I don't think so, as one without the community behind it would not have expanded or been so involving without the huge contributions the .Org contributes, one large star revolves around the other in creating a total X-Plane universe. Another milestone was that the X-Plane simulator itself past 100.000 files as it's basic installation, when I started 10 years ago that number was 28,000 files, but I will note a few of those files are Global Airport files, but it is still a huge growing number of files to update the simulator. So sitting here at the end of May it seems we have come through a storm, but seem to be better for it on the other side (a bit like the coronavirus in passing)... like everything around us June will be interesting, but I will take for once boring, even normal and just to have a non-eventful month. Stephen Dutton 1st June 2020 Copyright©2020 X-Plane Reviews
  2. Confused? JARDesign don't have a B767, that is FlightFactor... or is it the A330?
  3. Choice of a A320 is easy as it is the FlightFactor Ultimate, expensive but well worth it, the others are grouped into dated... A330-300, B777-200LR. The JARDesign A320neo has its huge fanclub, but for official Airbus rules (Laws) then only the FF A320U and the ToLiSS A319/A321 are certified, if you are very good on the Zibo B737 then you will need the equal status study level and that means only the FlightFactor/ToLiSS. The A330 is actually very good, but again no Airbus Laws, but as a simulation is it is fine, I still like the B777 but as noted you will find it now a bit old, but purchased on a sale price and you won't be disappointed.
  4. Yes you can believe that, but it shows that updates and changes are the lifeblood of any aircraft, for everything the A320neo is still quite flyable so a lot of credit to JARDesign, hopefully the other two can be given a new life and a future.
  5. Quick Impression : KOAK - Oakland International by Departure Designs I still believe that the approach into Oakland's Rwy 12 is one of the very best in X-Plane. Flying in a full flap slow approach speed you get glimpses of the Gold Gate Bridge (The big red one), the classic city of San Francisco on your right and then the brilliant low pass over the Oakland Bay Bridge, and in you go into OAK's Rwy 12... the landing experience here never ceases to excite me. There has been only one decent San Francisco and Oakland package and that was from Tom Curtis (Golden Gate), and yes there was a very good KOAK scenery as part of the pack, but that was released way back in 2013... which in X-Plane terms is that it is now quite old. So here is another KOAK-Oakland International from Departure Designs. I was quite indifferent to their KFLL- Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International, of which in areas it was very good, but in other areas it was a little patchy... so let us look at Oakland. My immediate response was to those very dark if black ground textures? and yes they are quite darkish brownish around areas of Rwy 12/30, but the eastern side of KOAK is actually a Golf Course and that is not dark at all but all nice and green. So the package does not blend in well to the X-Plane mesh here at all, and the boundaries can be clearly seen and worse close up they are not so nice either? The black patch (below left) is actually a lake? Is KOAK really like this? so I checked, no it isn't and neither is it a scorched earth policy at OAK either, So I don't like first off the overall look of the scenery as it is not at all realistic? KOAK is a significant cargo hub more than an commercial passenger airport, even then it is dominated by LCCs (Low Cost Carriers), or for more prominently for the El Cheapo Southwest Airlines. OAK Commercial Terminal area is to the south by the Rwy 30 Threshold... OAK has two passenger terminals - T1 & T2. The terminals are connected at post-security and gate areas, enabling arriving passengers to go straight to their connecting flights without having to re-enter the security check. U.S. Customs & Border Protection federal inspection facilities are located in Terminal 1. Terminal 1 serves Alaska Airlines, Allegiant Air, American Airlines, Azores Airlines, Contour Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Hawaiian Airlines, Spirit Airlines and Volaris. (while Norwegian ticket counters are located on level 2?). Level 2 houses the security check with access to gates 1–17 (gates 1 & 3 are international gates) near gate 4 is a connector to gates 20–32 of T2. Terminal 1 has a passenger transit area and the majority of the Port's aviation department offices are located in Terminal 1. Terminal 2 functions as the operating base for Southwest Airlines, and it has a baggage claim area and ticketing desks, with security checkpoint in the center and access to gates 20–25 and gates 26–32. At T2's gate 20 is the connector to T1's gates 1–17. Terminal modeling and design is far better than at KLFF, and thankfully the glass also looks realistic, so overall the terminal construction is very good. Rooftop phototextures are however really low-res, my graphic settings are all set at maximum, but they look like they are set at the lowest setting? a shame because the terminal buildings are very good, and the rooftop detail is also very good. Only Terminal 2 interior is detailed, but it is again very Low-Res affair and only to be viewed externally. SAM - Scenery Animation Manager plugin is available with Marshaller guidance, the airbridges are very well done and highly realistic and a highlight of the scenery. Ramp clutter is excellent and airline branded, but there is no ramp traffic. Remote stands "Tango" also has a "Ground Runup" (engine test bay) on the north end. A380/B748 aircraft can land on runway 12/30 and use taxiway W, but parking for the E size aircraft is restricted to the Tango zone. Landside is again totally ruined by the heavy Low-Res textures? I have come to accept Low-Res landside layouts, but this is horrible... .... carparks are well filled with 3d vehicles and the elevated rail is really actually well done, but it has no animated trains to use it, traffic does flow around the terminals so all is not lost. There is a huge facility called "Oakland Maintenance" on and near the entrance to the terminals landside, there is some nice advertising, but it is inversed on the side facing the airport? KOAK is of course a major cargo hub, with the large Oakland Sea Port not far from the airport, and FedEx has a large cargo base here. The FedEx aprons are well done and great for all the haulers out there. The KOAK Control Tower is set directly behind the FedEx base.... .... the tower is well modeled but looks not to be textured, and so also looks unfinished? Tower View is excellent on all four runways and approaches. Oakland International Airport IATA: OAK - ICAO: KOAK - FAA LID: OAK 12/30 - 10,520ft (3,206m) Asphalt 10R/28L - 6,213ft (1,894m) Asphalt 10L/28R - 5,458m (1,664m) Asphalt 15/33 - 3,376ft (1,029m) Asphalt Elevation AMSL 9 ft /3 m In many ways KOAK is a split airport with Rwy 12/30 on the west side and three runways 10R/28L, 10L/28R and 15/33 on the eastern side, and connecting the two areas is Taxiway B. This Taxiway B goes over the Ron Cowan Pkwy via a taxiway bridge. The bridge is a bit rough, but useable, again the very poor textures around it don't define the taxiway bridge very well. The three runways would be classed for GA and Light Jet operations, mostly they are all quite short in length. East/GA There is an assortment of General Aviation and Private Jet facilities and hangarage along the eastern boundary and fronting Taxiway C Generally it is well done, but a few of the textures are quite Low-Res including the signage and there a few nice static aircraft placed here as well, "Signature Aviation" are represented (twice?). Ground Textures The ground textures are a mixed bag, and overall I would call them amateurish... most grains are direct and not to the shape or lines of the taxiway or runway, patches are sharp, cut and not very realistic... ... worse are the sharp edges and it all looks crappy, because it is. Again the very dark underlays don't help out here either.... a bit of a dogs breakfast. The crucial approach area just north of Rwy 12 is awful as well, flat photo buildings don't look at all realistic, and there has been no effort to cover them... ... in one word "Ugly". Lighting The biggest bonus of the lighting is that being in the dark hides those horrible textures, but overall the lighting is pretty average as well. Approach and taxiway lighting is fine. The terminal area is not bad with two tone lighting for the Tango and main apron areas... .... down on the ramps it is not bad, but the light throw isn't very long, glass is not bad either and see through, so airside gets a pass... landside however and the lighting is terrible. Terminal glass is deathly, old-fashioned and not much of it... .... carparks are JUST passible with some spot lighting, but that is about it, however the remote cargo ramps are not too bad. FedEx Hub is very average and even the FedEx sign is not lit? ditto the crude Control Tower lighting, very basic. East boundary is not much better, a few sets of gantry lighting, a few lit advertising signs and that is about it? Summary Departure Designs are pumping scenery and airports out like no tomorrow, the list is big and growing fast... but we want quality and not quantity and the production line effect is creating B or C grade products. I really wanted to like KOAK-Oakland, but the only way to love it is to visualise the airport after a firestorm has swept through the area, those ground ortho textures are simply blackly horrible, in fact a lot of the textures are too far Low-Res and even nasty. Ground textures and their poor edging are also not visually good either, however the detail around the terminal airside is very good, but it ends there. Landside is average and so is the control tower, but overall nothing can shine here with these overwhelming textures, and in other areas it is photo flat and boring and simply ruins any decent airport approach. And what a terrible shame it all is as OAK's position on the east side of San Francisco Bay is one of the best locations you can get. SAM is a big attraction, and better glass in terminals helps again airside as is the good and branded clutter, but the positive list here is not good or a long one. My first impression of Oakland International was not great, and it sadly went downhill from there, and it is sad overall because I really wanted a good working KOAK as it has so many route benefits, but this Departure Design version is not going to be that OAK scenery. _____________________________________ Yes! KOAK - Oakland International by Departure Designs is available from the X-Plane.Org Store here : KOAK - Oakland International Price is US$24.95 Features: Heavily optimized Airport PBR Textures throughout Airport Rain Textures SAM Jetways Implemented Taxiway Bridge Highly detailed Custom Animated SAM Jetways Custom WT3 support prepared by Captain K-Man Custom Night Lighting color graded Satellite Imagery High Resolution 4K Textures Terminal layout circa Q2 2020 Ortho4XP Compatible WT3: WorldTraffic GroundRoutes are not provided Requirements: X-Plane 11 Windows, Mac or Linux 4GB VRAM Minimim - 8GB+ VRAM Recommended Current and Review version: 1.0 (May 24th 2020) Installation Download scenery file size is 1.62gb: Dep_KOAK - Oakland International Total scenery installation is quite big : 3.13gb SAM Plugin - Scenery Animation Manager - Suite 1.0 is required for this scenery Documents One extensive manual in English with notes (2 pages) but no charts OAK Manual.pdf _____________________________________________________________________ Quick Impression Review by Stephen Dutton 29th May 2020 Copyright©2020 : 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) 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 - tested v11.50.b9 (fine) Addons: Saitek x56 Rhino Pro system Joystick and Throttle : Sound - Bose Soundlink Mini Plugins: Traffic Global (Just Flight) US$52.99 Scenery or Aircraft - Default Boeing 737-800 by Laminar Reserch
  6. The REP pack goes into the PC12's Plugin folder, not the X-Plane/resources/plugins folder... the other items directly into your X-Plane root folder?
  7. I haven't downloaded the new v1.5.0 version yet so I can't comment, will do this week and see how it goes.
  8. Yes I very much feel your pain (I live on the Gold Coast, QLD) Australia does not get a fair deal in the exchange rates compared to the rest of the world, there is always a sale to help a little in creating a more balanced price... but yes it hurts.
  9. Oh please!, read the review it is explained how to authorise in the XJet plugin... Aircraft Review : King Air 350 by AirfoilLabs
  10. There is more value with the "Extended" pack as you have not only the two extra variants, but the PW/RR engines as well. The Avionics pack is just the FPDS avionics.
  11. Scenery Review : EKCH - Copenhagen XP by FlyTampa Everyone has a bucket list. A list of destinations that they really want and still considering everything that list is still pretty long in X-Plane. Our hopes were quietly were raised as a few more of the iconic brands of FlightSim movement moved over into X-Plane, but in reality a lot of them if not all of the bigger scenery art houses don't do or release any of their most high profile products in the X-Plane Simulator. This was in fact a really big head scratcher in the fact that why try to make a big new presence in a new platform but then deliver the most and obscure scenery products that were so off beat, or worse off route, and almost all of the FlightSim developers are all guilty of this strange behavior. It is only this last year that Orbx has finally delivered scenery we would want to actually buy in EGHP-Edinbourgh and EGFF-Cardiff and maybe you could add in EGHI in Southampton, but where still are we wanting for any of their excellent Australian sceneries except for Broome, I mean who flies to Broome for god's sake even from within Australia? That brings us to FlyTampa... when FlyTampa announced they were going to do scenery products for X-Plane, then you could feel the whole X-Plane community go "Yes", finally we will get some decent scenery from their excellent back catalogue. But no offence what we actually got was Corfu XP? Yes again an excellent scenery, but really Corfu? who goes there, Corfu is really a once when in the right mood destination? So it is the same promise and the same FlightSim result. As noted many times before on this site, the FlightSim developers all noted that X-Plane was a simulator you simply can't make money out of? But the reality was they gave us nothing to want to actually want to spend our actual money on worthwhile either, so who is really doing the wrong business plan here and then blaming us all when it is not working. So here is one of the big ones, a top rate scenery from FlyTampa that everyone wants to use. EKCH-Copenhagen airport has been at the top of my scenery must have list for so long the print on the paper has faded... It is finally here, finally a decent, decent hub for us to (finally) access and enjoy... but does this EKCH live up to the extremely long, long wait we have had to persevere to get into Copenhagen's CPH (no offence to the hard working Freeware devs). EKCH - Copenhagen XP by FlyTampa Copenhagen Airport, Kastrup Københavns Lufthavn, Kastrup IATA: CPH - ICAO: EKCH 04L/22R - 3,600m (11,811ft) Asphalt 04R/22L - 3,300m (10,827ft) Asphalt 12/30 - 2,800m (9,186ft) Asphalt/Concrete Elevation AMSL - 5m/17ft Copenhagen Kastrup Airport is a bit of a sprawl, all the facilities and the terminals are all set tight together on the north side of the field, the runways 04L/22R, 04R/22L and 12/30 are a cross (04R/22L and 12/30) and a offset parallel (04L/22R) layout, but that is what make EKCH so very interesting as an airport. The Öresund We will get the obvious out of the way first... the Øresund Bridge. The famous (Nordic television show) bridge is indeed reproduced here in the FlyTampa scenery, I have used a freeware version of the Øresund Bridge for years, but this version of the bridge is far more detailed and quite perfect with great animated traffic that flows from one side (Denmark) to the other (Sweden). The Øresund Bridge is highly visible from Kastrup and so it is a big and important part of the overall aspect of the airport. In fact the E20 Øresundmotorvejen goes around CPH airport and on to the bridge. Terminals and Concourses Kastrup has three terminals... Terminal 1, Terminal 2 and Terminal 3. Terminal 1 In note Terminal 1 is now part or an arm of Terminal 2 and Terminal 3. Previously all domestic flights departed from Terminal 1, but from 29 March 2015 all departures have now been collected in Terminals 2 and 3... but for the sake of confusion and the size of the terminal arrangements at CPH we will still note the Terminal 1 as a standalone. One thing that immediately becomes apparent is that it is simply impossible even with some brave attempts to recreate these CPH terminals with facades and generic objects. The terminal design is simply far too complex and so distinctive, you would never ever get it right. Custom modeling is the only way to create the feel and shape of the terminal... that said even with a custom design you would have to be again seriously good artist to... One. To take the project on, and Two. actually pull off the complex architecture, shapes and material look to make it all look actually authentic... but the results is that if you do have the skills and the talent are simply outstanding, we will get to the details and materials in a moment, but first just look at the results. The detail is breathtaking, sublime.... on and on in accolades, even the departure areas internally are well recreated. A Stands A18-A23 are (five) airbridges, A25-A34 (ten) are all walkon-walkoff stands. Terminal 2 Terminal 2-3 IS CPH - Kastrup, Terminal 2 overall is simply HUGE! but confusingly both Terminals 2 and 3 are also part of each other and you can actually flow between all three T1,T2 & T3 as Copenhagen want to promote the Danish easy-flow travel experience... Terminal 2 has two (piers) concourses in Concourse A (A Gates), Concourse B (B Gates) and Terminal 3 has Concourse C (C Gates) and Concourse F (F Gates). We will still split up the Terminals to absorb the separate areas... Terminal 2 There are two halls as part of Terminal 2, one is easily visible, but the other hall (lower above) is hidden behind the Carpark P4. Obviously the second hall is a terminal built in a different era in design and in fact it was opened 10th May 1960 and very much looks like the Heathrow of the 60's era. The 60's era recreation here is excellent, the terminal design is totally authentic, as with the later addon extension of which is all glass. Both A and B piers were part of the original 60's terminal building, but have been both completely redesigned with the A Concourse now having a T shape with a rebuilt end, you can actually see parts of the original pier as part of the B Concourse, but again the design is now very modern and updated here with a circular end design rather than another T bar shape. If you love exceptional detail and for pushing simulation to the edges of extreme realism, then Concourse A will bring you to tears... ... the metal cladding materials with even all the riveting are just sublime. Reflections are also awe-inspiring with the same metal textures, and have your taxi-light light on when parking and it is about as real as it gets. Gates A4-A17 (Ten) gates and all are active airbridges. Airbridge detail and design is also drop-your-jaw magnificent, and they are all also SAM-Scenery Animation Management active, are you crying yet, you will be or should be. To note everything is not totally perfect as some FlightSim quirks have still come through, like with the transparency around stairs and a few objects turning blue, but this is overall simply heaven made quality for the most of us. Concourse B is just as good... same exceptional cladding here with stringers, the quality is excellent.... ... which brings us to the glass. I had a lot to say or complain about with glass in the KFLL-Fort Lauderdale scenery... notably that glass is very hard to get right or very wrong as the KFLL scenery showed... but here it shows you can actually do it right or use the right way to do realistic glass. Here reflective but dark tinted glass throughout the EKCH scenery is perfect and totally absolutely realistic, so it can be done correctly. Gates B4-B19 (ten) Both the Gates A and Gates B waiting internal areas are represented and well done, even the centre pier corridor is completed... impressive. Terminal 3 The arrow shaped building is the entrance to Terminal 3, connected to the railway station landside... ... Terminal 3 serves both the International departure terminal as well as the LCC (El Cheapo) Low-Cost Carrier terminal in one building and designwise it is hugely impressive. And even if the internal fitout is a bit sparse compared to the others, with just checkin counters situated each side. Terminal 3 airside is complex with a big C, it looks straight forward, but the actual terminal and Concourse C (C Gates) have so many different elements... ... it is a credit to FlyTampa that it looks so very if totally realistic, as even down to each parking bay then the design can be different... overall there is a sort of same design logic to it all, but totally sensational this design all is, glass is again sensational and get into the right lighting conditions and the quality simply blows you away... C37 and C39 are Class E or A380 stands, and really well done they are... I however couldn't get the Peter A380 to connect, sometimes it showed, but other times it didn't in the SAM? but I think it is the aircraft being more out of date than the SAM issue. Notable here are the A380 notes, the A380 can only use RWY 04R/22L (the smaller one?) and the permitted taxi routes are clearly defined, Navigraph supplies the correct notes (10-9C1) and the noted taxi routes. Gates C27-C39 are on the concourse, side on facing Terminal 3 are D1-D4, and all gates have animated airbridges. Internal Terminal 3 Concourse C is also modeled, from the main arrival area with shops to the corridors and waiting gate areas... ... internally it is not super detailed, but can be highly explored if you like that kind of thing... I think it has the right balance between detail and efficiency. The design circular language of the A380 zone is kept very real, and over the two arrival and departure levels. CPH created a new section called CPH Go, now called Pier F, and it is a dedicated low-cost carrier terminal with remote stands, Concourse F was opened in October 2010. CPH Go - Concourse F Clever in a way to create a dedicated area for LCC carriers. There is an actual terminal building that is connected to Terminal 3 via a covered walkway... ... but the connection is odd in that it does not actually connect to the actual F Terminal? On google Maps you can see the problem in that there is a missing walkway section (in red) from the main walkway into the terminal, an oversight? Stands E36, F1, F4, F5, F7-F9 front the terminal, F89-F98 are Remote stands with H101-H106 for the larger twin-aisle aircraft, there is an overflow area of E Stands fronting the SAS Maintenance Hangars, for stands E70-E82, buses are of course required. Airside on the F Stands it is simply sensational, a great place to arrive in a prop or domestic jet... internal Terminal F is again good. Airside clutter is sensational, all vehicles are SAS or CPH branded and just about perfect in density.... animated traffic is good as well, with cars, tugs, vans and buses all rotating around the airport, but I like the lower flow of vehicles that move around, enough for movement around the scenery, but not to be cluttered up with too much colliding traffic... ... note if using EKCH in v11.50 there is a need to update the Ground Traffic plugin, IMPORTANT details are in installation below. Landside Kastrup Airport landside has all the terminal designated carparks with all buildings having very up to date and great visual advertising... The Clarion Hotel (ex-Hilton) is well represented and has the same metal (reflective) cladding as the terminals. Considering the excellent clutter detail airside, then landside is completely different, actually more like the forgotten area, as spaces are quite empty and there is a general feeling of desolation, overall it is a stale feel... a sort of post-apocalypse world or post-virus disaster. There is traffic that circulates around the inner roads and on the whole it is good, but not actually very busy... I would add in more static elements to fill theses area a bit more in these drop off, pick up areas. ... green roads don't fit into the landscape either, and washout quite badly in other areas with such a Lo-Res texture, which is a shame as almost every other area is so well done in the scenery, but the traffic is great and so are the trains that travel all the way (and back) to central Copenhagen. SAS Maintenance Kastrup is a main SAS hub and airline base, and the airline has a major maintenance facility here with the four main maintenance hangers dominating the northeast side of the central terminal area. Sadly the doors don't open per SAM. Cargo The large cargo facility is far northeast and a separate area from the central terminal area on the threshold of RWY 10. Again very well represented the cargo haulers will love the large apron and well detailed clutter. The usual suspects in DHL, FedEx are well represented, but again more landside cargo clutter would have been nice. SAS Cargo have their own facility and this area is well done as is the SkyChef's catering building set behind. Area South and Copenhagen Airport South Diagonally opposite and southwest of the central terminal area is the noted Area South. Here is the Control Tower and a Military Supply area, plus various Danish Company Airport facilities like Maersk and Goldschmidt Aviation... mostly very military in feel and look, but that Danish design comes out well here as authentic. Kastrup Control Tower is an exposed concrete style affair, not very pretty, but very authentic and very well done here and opened and operated in 2008 by Naviair... tower view is set somewhere in the Terminal 1 zone? a very odd place and totally useless? Copenhagen Airport South The area southwest is the really old original section of Kastrup Airport and has the original 1920's terminal building as part of the area, which is now used as a VIP and Royal terminal. The Original terminal was moved about 2 km during the 1990s to its current position. SAS traffic has an office that resides at Copenhagen Airport South under the old control tower, and there are also few airport facility support buildings including the bus depot also located over in this area. Ground Textures The runway and taxiway textures are exceptional... rough edges and patches, with that highly realistic asphalt join marking on the runways that is really good to excellent detail. Rubber gloss on touchdown areas and so many other fine details, make these textures some of the best lately... ... all textures have PBR reflections and are excellent in damp or wet conditions, grain is very good and so is all the signage and markings, you just simply can't fault it. Grass is unique as well... this is the first multi-layered grass I have seen, and that low and tall grass/flowers effect is simply so effective for field realism. The scenery comes with SAM-Seasons built in and the winter textures are excellent... I don't run SAM-Seasons as I use xEnviro, but have seen them in action and they are very good. (images are courtesy of FlyTampa). Copenhagen FlyTampa are renowned for not only providing the actual airport scenery, but all the surrounding cityscape as well... In that aspect the Copenhagen XP does not disappoint. Because the whole area has a custom mesh then the Copenhagen Airport is very well immersed into the scenery, and obviously there are no boundaries or change of texture colour here. The cityscape is excellent with Danish objects that covers all the housing and buildings in Copenhagen. It is a little generic in feel, missing though are important church spires and the large government buildings and Palaces, but overall it is very good... Custom areas include Ørestad a modern area of the city with the Marriott Bella Sky building and the Bella Centre, but missing though is the very distinctive (now closed, but soon to be a museum) Svanemølle Power Station and it's three tall funnels that dominates the Copenhagen skyline and harbour entrance? Highly visible are the twenty power wind turbines (The Danish are very into climate change and the environment) that I thought were static... ... but they do actually turn as their speed of rotation depends on the strength of the wind speed, a nice feature, there is another wind turbine at Ørestad... and note the Øresund Bridge again in the background. Lighting Kastrup lighting is quite spectacular! There is a huge differential in tone between the airside's extremely bright areas and the landside's more subdued illumination. But bright on the ramps it is? this is one of the brightest ramp areas I think I have seen, personally I absolute love it, but I know it will seriously divide the punters. Even with the subdueded lighting it is more than one tone, so it works overall, but I still question if a bit more lighting was required landside? The lit advertising is very nice. Terminal 3 is bit dark, but overall the rail terminus, office and administration building lighting (SAS) is very authentic and looks good. Remote stands F and E are excellent. Area South is well lit, with a lot of nice drop lighting and overhead gantry... Cargo and SkyChef's catering is also very good. Copenhagen City is not bad, but there are areas of monochomic lighting and some tall buildings are not lit? but other buildings look great.... overall the city nightscape is very good. Recommended is to have v11.50's reflection detail switched on, the Øresund Bridge looks brilliant on arrival and departure at CPH under a full moon. ___________________________ Summary Iconic Flight Simulator developers for years have been taunting X-Plane users that they created exceptional scenery, but simply refused to develop for the X-Plane platform, but instead threw us usually the most obscure and even worthless product to convince themselves that X-Plane as a simulator was not worth their time or investment, and in most cases they then wondered why we never purchased anything from them. In other words both sides lost in a game of wasted resources, time and even good business sense. The slow death of the original FlightSim movement, and the rise of the quality of X-Plane11, the tide turned in the fact that to just survive with the movement of a lot of their own customers the FlightSim developer then decided to finally deliver quality products for the X-Plane Platform, but to a point because still the bigger scenery assets were going to take time to convert to the X-Plane specifications, so again we had to wait. But time was now running out in the fact the FlightSim world now had a new version in FS2020 (Still in development). For years X-Plane has been starved of the sort of mega quality scenery other platforms found accessible, it is not about money, it s about the quality of the scenery that is the attraction, plus the requirement that it also conforms to the X-Plane features and effects. So here is FlyTampa's first big mega scenery or a sort of leveller scenery that the FlightSim community have not had access to for years. And not only is this Copenhagen XP our really first taste of their top grade scenery, but also the quality that can help the simulator at least have fair balance on keeping Ex-FlightSim simmers in the X-Plane platform FS2020 not withstanding. The main point to make with this scenery is the way that FlyTampa has utilised the X-Plane PBR effects in metal and glass, not to mention the complex modeling in recreating a very highly realistic Kastrup, to not have done so would have ruined a major chance of any big FlightSim developer in creating any decent scenery for X-Plane in the future, in fact it could have killed any future development stone dead, as the poor sales figures would have seen to that alone. Copenhagen XP is really a huge triumph for everyone, both FlyTampa and X-Plane users in the sheer quality and quality of this scenery. As noted the modeling and the use of materials in this scenery are simply outstanding, as noted metal, glass and reflection effects are off the scale in quality, but also is the use of the mesh, textures and even down to the use double scale grass to create almost a masterpiece of Kastrup for X-Plane users to use. Small detailing of the branded clutter, good vehicle animation, SAM-Scenery-Animation-Manager airbridges and included also are season textures, Copenhagen city, Øresund Bridge and highly impressive lighting are also huge plus-points It is not perfect though, nothing is totally absolutely perfection. Landside is missing the heavier clutter detail of the airside, and actually required here to cover the more lower-resolution textures, the small but important missing connection between the walkway and Terminal F, green roadways and washed out textures could be more Hi-Res... and lighting could be just a bit better on the landside as well... the tower view is just MIA. The fate of FlightSim quality scenery is really now in our X-Plane wallets, ignore this scenery for poor freeware, or invest in a quality we deserve and also have a seriously important European hub for our route requirements. So buy and receive finally a scenery we have been begging for years for, it is now your choice and in reality vote with your wallets and show that yes X-Plane can be a profitable platform because this Copenhagen XP scenery gives us absolutely now no excuses because FlyTampa has certainly delivered here, the future is now set with how X-Plane as a community repays them for in doing so. As a note, FlyTampa announced EHAM Schiphol as another scenery to be released besides this EKCH, now that airport is also another certainly been worth waiting for if it as good as this Copenhagen XP..... Absolutely must have scenery. _____________________________________ Yes! EKCH - Copenhagen XP by FlyTampa is available from the X-Plane.Org Store here : FlyTampa Copenhagen XP Price is US$31.00 Copenhagen Airport Copenhagen Kastrup International (EKCH) Airport Addon Airport modeled with PBR material 3D bridges, Animated vehicles & trains SAM Animated Jetways SAM Docking Guidance system Copenhagen City Copenhagen city fully modeled Hand-placed vegetation, and 3D lighting High Resolution surrounding Photo Scenery with custom mesh Dynamic lighting Volumetric Grass WT3: WorldTraffic GroundRoutes are not provided and a generation is required, and overall the airport generation functions perfectly. Traffic Global runs fine Requirements: X-Plane 11 Windows or Mac (not compatible with Linux) 4GB VRAM Minimum - 8GB VRAM Recommended Download Size: 2 GB Current and Review version : 2.0 (May 10th 2020) Installation You download an Installer, that you then set the X-Plane install address and then insert your email address and the authorization key... the installer will then do the rest (Internet connection is required and fast if possible). Install is five folders set in order: FlyTampa_Copenhagen_0_airport FlyTampa_Copenhagen_0_city Flytampa_Copenhagen_1overlays Flytampa_Copenhagen_2Photoreal Flytampa_Copenhagen_3Mesh Total scenery installation is a huge big : 6.84gb SAM Plugin - Scenery Animation Manager - Suite 1.0 is required for this scenery Seasons Seasons for the SAM - Seasons (SAM2 Suite) is provided and the installer does the work for you at the Installation phase. Ground Traffic The Ground Traffic plugin does not work in v11.50 (Vulkan). There is a fix that can be downloaded here, and then you need to replace the Ground Traffic file.xpl in ALL the PLUGIN folders in the: airport, city, overlays and Photoreal folders... then it will work. Documents One extensive manual in English with notes (6 pages) but no charts FlyTampa-Copenhagen.pdf _____________________________________________________________________ Scenery Review by Stephen Dutton 20th May 2020 Copyright©2020 : 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) 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 - tested v11.50.b9 (fine) Addons: Saitek x56 Rhino Pro system Joystick and Throttle : Sound - Bose Soundlink Mini Plugins: Traffic Global (Just Flight) US$52.99 Scenery or Aircraft - Default Boeing 737-800 by Laminar Reserch
  12. Your going to have to supply more information than that? My Traffic Global works fine in both v11.41 and v11.50b
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