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CRJ honest review


ASH624
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I am a fan of MSFS, and mainly fly the FBW A32nx on Vatsim. Prior to this I used Xplane with the Zibo 737 and the ERJ series jets being my favourites. I also have 3000hrs IRL flying experience. I was excited to purchase the CRJ as a smaller jet I could take into more regional airports, just like the ERJ series in Xplane.

 

The modelling and detailing is fantastic, as are the manuals. This is a high benchmark others should follow.

 

I understand the need to make everything as realistic as possible, but for use in simulation an aircraft has to be usable, here there are some real issues in my opinion.

 

The PFD and MFD font is quite ridiculously small. It might be realistic, but for simming the font is useless. To actually see the "Alt" set in the PFD you have to be very close to the display itself, and if you do that, you can no longer see the Alt knob on the glare shield to change the set alt.

 

ILS info font, waypoint info, and most other essential info font is way too small. Its no good being "realistic" if you cant read it.

 

Zooming into an active flight plan does not seem to increase the font size.

 

Trying to fly a manual ILS approach is impossible as the green diamond is the size of a pinhead and gets lost against the background. The lateral ILS navigation is also not great to read for accuracy.

 

The A/P when following a flight plan tends to bank too soon, then has to turn the other way to correct itself, requiring quite a few wobbles to get on track again. The A/P often overshoots a desired altitude in climb or descent, sometimes by several hundred feet.

 

The barometer keeps flashing at me to change the setting, even though nowhere near required altitude to change it from QNH to STD (transition set in the FMC)

 

Positives are many, its a delight to fly, highly detailed switches and systems, I am pleased I purchased, but disappointed especially with the font size.

 

Fix the font size and "tweak" the A/P and its going to be fantastic.

 

All the above just my opinion.

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Agree it’s really hard to read. What I do is pop out the screen I need to see while adjusting. So when adjusting AP altitude I will pop out the PFD (using right-alt/left-click.) Cheating a bit but doesn’t kill immersion for me. I just pretend I’m leaning forward to see it. :)

 

This is an absolute work of art but ruins my day when, without fail, the AP dives on approach. If they can fix that this will be pretty much the only thing I fly in MSFS. I just love it so much. 

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I have created several custom views to be able to see both the AP knobs and PFD/MFD at the same time (but it is entirely "heads down").  It definitely requires a lot more switching between these views than something like the A320, but I've found it a blast to fly!

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44 minutes ago, kvk1 said:

I will third the font "issue." I resorted to popping down the HUD in critical phases of flight where I really need to keep an eye on the numbers.

If you're only "resorting to it" you're denying yourself a incredibly effective tool for safe and efficient airmanship...maybe I'm biased because my career is designing and testing (acceptance testing/flying) flight trainers for the military, but HUD's are a incredible asset to SA.

 

All that aside larger displays are becoming very popular for simming, I have no problem with the font. My primary display is a 55" 4k oled for my sim station and a 34" ultrawide in my main desk, with dedicated touch panel controller and 13" navmap screen.

 

People would raise absolute hell if the fonts were not correct. Getting the fonts right on avionics is hugely important to the majority of the enthusiast community who are probably the primary target market for this product.

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And if they made the font's larger and more readbale the "die hard realism" guys would chime in and whine about wrong text size.

 

HaveYou tried to press "Alt Gr" (Right ALT) and the hovering the mouse over the Displays ?

 

A looking glass will appear and You can open a resizable undocked version of the Display.

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Oh I didn't mean resorting in a negative way, I love the HUD, especially coming from a mainly DCS background. Said that, inclusion of options that strike a balance between realism and QoL for video game purposes never hurt.

 

Also, the concern of "die hard realism" people doesn't really concern me. People who treat this hobby like life and death suck all the joy out of it.

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7 minutes ago, kvk1 said:

 

Also, the concern of "die hard realism" people doesn't really concern me. People who treat this hobby like life and death suck all the joy out of it

 

The beauty of flight simulators is you can use them however you want, if you want to be ultra-realistic, go for it, if you want fun, go for it, maybe a compromise if possible is having an option in the EFB where you can increase PFD/MFD display fonts, like you can change the PFD colours and that should satisfy both sides :) 

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2 minutes ago, kvk1 said:

Oh I didn't mean resorting in a negative way, I love the HUD, especially coming from a mainly DCS background. Said that, inclusion of options that strike a balance between realism and QoL for video game purposes never hurt.

 

Also, the concern of "die hard realism" people doesn't really concern me. People who treat this hobby like life and death suck all the joy out of it.

 

As a Flightsim developer from the past I can assure You those people will start reporting in all kind of FS forums that the CRJ isn´t realistic and that the Font´s are wrong and that realism is compromised.

Also it would require alot of thinking into which text should be enlarged, cause in the end, if the size of the displays should reflect the correct overall size, only a small protion of the Display content could be enlarged without compromising the overall look and usability of the Displays.

 

Even in real life I guess (without ever have seen the CRJ Displays in real life) these displays are rather small.

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Is there a reason you do not simply pop them up? Even undock? On my screen I can then read the text from a meter away without problems. And there are of course other options, new viewpoints that can make the characters huge, zoom in.... 

 

In the end we simply can't make the displays larger then they are and when you use a bigger font the information simply does not fit. All text would overlap.

 

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1 hour ago, kvk1 said:

Also, the concern of "die hard realism" people doesn't really concern me. People who treat this hobby like life and death suck all the joy out of it.

 

Apologies, reading back this came off way too vitriolic. Worded better, putting roadblocks in front of features of accessibility because it doesn't conform 1:1 to real world specifications is a bit of a bummer.

 

Mathijs those are all great options I already use to full effect. As I said in my original post this is an "issue" and not really an issue. Just spitballing a personal wishlist of sorts. Best.

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kvk1, don't worry, any comment is welcome and I did not see it as problematic. We al written stuff on forums that came out harder then expected.

 

I did not fully understand it, as there is no possible solution in the 3D environment. If you undock the windows however and have a large enough screen you can read them from meters away. I add the screenshots as a zip so the forum does not resize them. These are from a standard 4k screen.

 

 

Desktop.zip

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I have changed some values in the camera.cfg to be able to quickly use my flight sticks hat switch to go to Pilot Close or Pilot Landing view.

I have increased zoom for them and also for Pilot Close the angle.


CRJ700

[CAMERADEFINITION.0]
Title ="Pilot"
InitialZoom =0.4

[CAMERADEFINITION.1]
Title ="ClosePilot"
InitialZoom =0.2
InitialPbh= -18, 0, 0

[CAMERADEFINITION.2]
Title ="LandingPilot"
InitialZoom =0.3

 

Not sure if there is another way to achieve that permanently other than changing this file. 

If you want try it out - for me it makes all the difference. 

Of course when there is an update it might probably overwrite these changes - but they are redone quickly. 

 

To the Aerosoft team - maybe they would be a better default for the plane as indeed the screens are very hard to read in the default view. And popping them out costs a lot of fps (at least on my system).

 

 

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The ILS seems to work better if you switch the Nav source to Loc, instead of leaving it on fms after your on the glide slope. I pop out the primary flight display and resize for final approach reference. Yes, fonts are hard to read if your sitting back in the seat, but custom views help. I find using the scroll mouse wheel to adjust vs is too sensitive. Left clicking the vs speed wheel is much more precise. I like the aircraft and other than the WT mod on Citation it's the best to fly.

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In MSFS you can hit CTL+ALT+(Some number key on the top row, not sure of the number pad).  This will create a custom cockpit view.  I use this to create views of the FMC, Center Console, Overhead panel, EFB, My personal primary flight view,  and MCP panel.  This I just assign these to my switch.  I have zero problems reading anything from one of these views on a 43 inch 4k Monitor that I have located about 3 feet in front of me.  I have yet to see a need to manually modify cameras in the camera.cfg file.

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Hi everyone!

 

I have the new crj for msfs, works like a breeze. Only problem is that the aircraft turns too soon and tends to undershoot turns before waypoints. This does not happen every flight, but once it does, it does it for the rest of the flight. Anyone else experiencing this? any fixes? thanks in advance

 
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9 hours ago, haskell99 said:

This is an absolute work of art but ruins my day when, without fail, the AP dives on approach. If they can fix that this will be pretty much the only thing I fly in MSFS.

There have been a few people asking Aerosoft to fix known MSFS bugs but they just can't. Unless by "they" you means Asobo, it doesn't read that way though. That Asobo have made a priority of at least the two of the nastiest bugs affecting the CRJ is a good thing though.

 

2 hours ago, N38TM said:

The ILS seems to work better if you switch the Nav source to Loc, instead of leaving it on fms after your on the glide slope.

 

Mine switches automatically. Yours doesn't? Maybe you need to select Approach mode a little earlier or something?

 

I do experience a gentle rocking as it follows the glide path. I've no idea if it is realistic or not. All the airfields I've gone to have a large 90 degree crosswind (so unrealistic but it matches MeteoBlue) so I figured that could be contributing to it. These things move in the parcel of air after all.

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It does switch to the loc, but if you change the nav source knob to use nav1 rather than fms it turns green. I may be mistaken?!

Maybe somebody else can say what is correct.

 

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7 hours ago, N38TM said:

It does switch to the loc, but if you change the nav source knob to use nav1 rather than fms it turns green. I may be mistaken?!

Maybe somebody else can say what is correct.

 

You need to switch to the correct source for AP and displays. FMS is satellite based navigation and will not work for VOR or ILS navigation. That what the NAV Source switch is for. If it is green than it is active,

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In regards ti the views we have created. They are based on 4K and 3K monitors. If yiu are using smaller monitors, then I suggest to set the zoom in the UI General-Camera. My base is 65%. You can also modify your default view position there. 
But is it a difference if you fly a C172 or an airliner and requires a compromise on readability and view angle.

Another option is using adhoc zoom function if you need to spot a specific figure.

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22 hours ago, ASH624 said:

 

Trying to fly a manual ILS approach is impossible as the green diamond is the size of a pinhead and gets lost against the background. The lateral ILS navigation is also not great to read for accuracy.

 

The A/P when following a flight plan tends to bank too soon, then has to turn the other way to correct itself, requiring quite a few wobbles to get on track again. The A/P often overshoots a desired altitude in climb or descent, sometimes by several hundred feet.

 

The barometer keeps flashing at me to change the setting, even though nowhere near required altitude to change it from QNH to STD (transition set in the FMC)

I use a 4K monitor which helps with reading the displays, but you can also set your own custom views that are zoomed in closer. That is what I have done for the pilot, center and copilot views, as well as a zoomed view of the pilot’s FMS. My custom views are probably zoomed 30 percent over the default, but I can still see over the glare shield by pressing the space bar. 
 

The fonts in the real aircraft really are as small as you see them, as is the glideslope diamond. The green shade of the GS diamond is, IMO, a poor color choice by Rockwell Collins, but that is exactly how it looks in the real aircraft.


The real displays have to pack a lot of information in a small space. The danger of trying to increase the font size above the existing size in the sim is that the formatting of the display might look really bad.

 

Turning before actually reaching a waypoint is normal behavior for the real CRJ autopilot, (as it is in most airliners) unless the waypoint is marked as a mandatory flyover waypoint in the Nav data. This is known as “turn anticipation”, and the aircraft will normally cut the corner on the inside of the waypoint, then rejoin the path beyond it. A strong crosswind will complicate things, and perhaps more tuning can be done in this area. My experience has been that with no (or light) winds aloft, the lateral tracking is excellent even with very sharp course changes.

 

A mandatory flyover waypoint can be a struggle even for the real CRJ, because turn anticipation cannot be used - the aircraft must directly overfly the center of the waypoint, and only then can it begin turning to the new course.
 

In testing, I have never seen the issue where the barometric setting flashes anywhere but at the defined TA/TL. I do all my flying in the US, and use the default 18,000 feet. I have not tried setting a different TA/TL - perhaps there is an issue there. I will check this.

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