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FSX / P3D Configuration Guide - UPDATED!
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PPL student observations
A worthwhile investment for the serious Simmer.
|I have spent many years at my desk flying all sorts of aircraft on FS2004 and FSX. When I turned forty recently I decided to take the plunge and learn to fly for real or I may very well regret it some day. From the very first day I sat into the cockpit of the C172 at the training school I realized that ( for now at least ) I will have to park up the virtual jets and learn to start all over again. I'm not suggesting any prospective real-time student would have to do the same but this was the route I decided to take. After a few lessons I fired up the default C172 in FSX and quickly realized how "wrong" it all was. Flight dynamics were way off and it certainly wasn't going to help me with my flight training (with the possible exception of it being useful for cockpit layout familiarization).
After some online research I decided to purchase and download Carenado's Cessna 172 Skyhawk for FSX. Given that I already had Saitek's Yoke, Rudder Pedals and Throttle Quadrant I was more or less ready to go. I was a little disappointed when I first fired up the software because the panel was creamy white unlike the black panel that I was used to seeing in my training aircraft. This was quickly resolved by downloading a freeware black panel which I manually inserted into the Carenado installation. Also missing was ILS and DME. These are not required for VFR training/flying but my training aircraft was fitted with these features so it would have been nice to have them replicated. A quick search around AVSIM solved this particular problem ( http://bit.ly/wBDhUh).
With all of this up and running it was time to FLY. I have to say that Carenado's C172 is fantastic. It has definitely helped me to solidify my skills between lessons. The flight dynamics are brilliant. Of course much of real-time flying is by sensation i.e you can "feel" yourself pitching up (or down) in a turn in the real aircraft and this can't be properly reflected on a simulated airplane. BUT, flight "dynamics" are so accurately reflected in Carenado's aircraft that you will find yourself learning to put in the correct amount of control inputs through various maneuvers. So much so, for me at least, that when I take to the air for real I surprise myself at how well I handle the real aircraft.
To bring out the true realism of the Caranedo C172 handling characteristics I recommend using FSUIPC to handle the control axis for your input devices. It does a much better job than the default FSX controllers.
Visually, Carenado's offering is not HD (to date) but the quality of the panels and switches etc is very high indeed and every button and dial is as it is in the real aircraft. The virtual cockpit will have you completely immersed. Track IR is also very useful here especially when you are looking around for a landmark or an elusive grass runway.
I fully recommend this add-on for serious simmers and real-time students alike. It is so much better than the default C172 in every way.
posted on 9-8-2012, 5:45 AM by Holdit
I also have the Carenado 172 with the add-on black panel, and earlier this year I took an introductory flight in a 172 N (I got to control the yoke, but not the rudders or throttle). As soon as I sat in the left seat, I knew exactly where I was and where everything was and what everything was. The only things that were new were adjusting the seat (it seemed to move back like a catapult), the seat-belt, and plugging in the headset (which of course usually goes into the front of the PC!).
Oh, and the panel was black...