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Ravna

Dedicated Soaring Simulators

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Got my hands on 2 dedicated soaring simulators.

They are called Condor and Silent Wings

Graphics could be improved, but flight dynamics, weather and resulting lift, makes soaring in FSX look bleak

Download Condor & the Miffin scenery, and you know what I'm talking about.

Both offer trial downloads, give them a spin.

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I've got Silent Wings, think it's great, but have you ever tried adding a plane other than those on their website ?

:cheers2:

Max

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Aircraft other than those on their website ? Are there any ?

Are you trying to use unmodified MS Flight Simulator Aircraft ? That's not possible.

However, planes made for FS9 can be converted, it's pretty simple.

There's a tool called GngModeller, to import mdl files.

Bitmaps can be converted with Nvidia tools, or the ACES image tool in FSXs SDL.

Configuration files are in plain text and self explaining.

Doesn't take longer than a few hours.

Here's a Tutorial

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Doesn't take longer than a few hours.

:lol: Did you ever try to convert a FSX plane with 3d instruments in the VC ?

I did... try... :cry:

:cheers2:

Max

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Theres always a catch, huh ? ^_^

Without the source files it's next to impossible, that's true.

But you don't have to, and you can't use them anyway.

As said above , "planes made for FS9" and earlier.

I had no trouble converting Wolfgang Pipers LS4.

FSX models don't work with the GngModeller.

The files are still called *.mdl, but the format is different.

But I've read that someone is working on an importer for Blender.

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Hey Ravna

Are you soaring with the fsx add ons: Cumulus x and Simprobe V3 and with the new Soar DG or are you making this simulator comparison with stock fsx ?

Hodge

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I compare them to FSX with all add-ons.

The stuff SimProbe and CumulusX do, is already build-in.

That's why they are called "Dedicated Soaring Sims"

MS has never given soaring much thought.

And they use less resources.

I get around 45 fps in stock FSX. With SP and CX enabled the framerate drops below 25.

Silent Wings gives me +70, with all options set to max.

But don't take my word for it, download a copy and have a look.

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Nah!!........I'm really happy where fsx soaring is at, I don't have any framerate problems and when I'm finished soaring, my kids can take off in an FA 18 hornet from Zell am Zee on full afterburner and fly at 50ft through the mountains!!

Hodge

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Hodge

I am with you on this topic. But on the other hand I do appreciate the fact that Ravna is looking out for our best interest(s) also. I really enjoy what Ravna has brought to the table for us all to munch on and I really hope he is not turned to the "Dark Side". Ravna punched out two missions, that were in my humble opinion, pretty good. He gave me reason to expand my horizons to more texture and scenery. I do not posses the ability, skills or forethought that Ravna does and if he is converted he will be missed by our community.

Thanks

Sam

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No worries Sam, it's all about diversity.

As Hodge said: He can soar, and his kids can fly F-18s afterwards.

That's the strength of MS FSs and also their weakness.

They do everything fairly well, but nothing really good.

Their flight model is made for a Cessna, if the aircraft get's larger, weight and engines are added.

Still, it's the FM of a Cessna . . .

They don't care about the dimensions of the visual model, you can assign the FM of a 747 to a Sailboat.

This approach isn't ideal for gliders, military jets and especially not for Helicopters.

I'm not saying FSX is bad, I just wanted to point out that there are other good sims.

With the size of todays HDDs, we can have a dozen or more on our boxes.

Nobody ever said this site is Microsoft only.

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Both offer trial downloads, give them a spin.

Where did you find the trial for Condor Soaring ?

DR

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As you say Ravna, its all about diversity, I have heard that Condor as a dedicated sim is very good, however if each of us is happy with what we have then it doesnt matter much whether we are flying fsx or condor or whatever, as long as we are having a good time doing it. I really like the interraction with the group of people who are developing missions and doing add ons for fsx soaring. and all the ideas and fun that goes along with it. :smiles:

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Hi,

just a short comment.

There's no trial version of Condor.

Nevertheless I own a Condor license and did never regret. I use both (FSX and Condor) for soaring but with slightly different attitudes.

FSX I use for flightseeing, exploring great scenery, trying out different planes and having fun with missions (special thanks to all mission developers here).

It's a pleasure that one could go out for soaring worldwide in a couple of seconds, having all types of weather conditions.

Another reason (for me) to use FSX is navigation. I love to fly IFRR - I Follow Roads and Rivers - With FSX graphics, details and Addons it's possible and kind of realistic. Say far more realistic then with the comic-like-graphics[TM] Condor offers.

Condor I use if I'm in the mood for a little competition. Especially for competition Condor offers same planes for all (as they are approved by Condor-Dev-Team), FAI handicap system, different types of tasks, a good weather-engine for soaring (although it's always flying-conditions there - no rain, wind with a max of 50km/h), hundreds of tasks downloadable from a database wehere you can search for tasks with different properties (as estimated flight time, difficulty, type - e.g. mountain or thermal flying) and so on. Additionally one doesn't have to prepare an event weeks before it takes place, inviting those few pilots and hoping they participate. There are races out there in the web you can join almost 24/7.

I'm pretty sure FSX is getting closer every week and Condor has it's limits, too.

You just have to know what you need the simulator for and then chose the one suiting best for you. That's not easy , I admit that.

Cheers,

Dirk.

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Hi,

just a short comment.

There's no trial version of Condor.

Nevertheless I own a Condor license and did never regret. I use both (FSX and Condor) for soaring but with slightly different attitudes.

FSX I use for flightseeing, exploring great scenery, trying out different planes and having fun with missions (special thanks to all mission developers here).

It's a pleasure that one could go out for soaring worldwide in a couple of seconds, having all types of weather conditions.

Another reason (for me) to use FSX is navigation. I love to fly IFRR - I Follow Roads and Rivers - With FSX graphics, details and Addons it's possible and kind of realistic. Say far more realistic then with the comic-like-graphics[TM] Condor offers.

Condor I use if I'm in the mood for a little competition. Especially for competition Condor offers same planes for all (as they are approved by Condor-Dev-Team), FAI handicap system, different types of tasks, a good weather-engine for soaring (although it's always flying-conditions there - no rain, wind with a max of 50km/h), hundreds of tasks downloadable from a database wehere you can search for tasks with different properties (as estimated flight time, difficulty, type - e.g. mountain or thermal flying) and so on. Additionally one doesn't have to prepare an event weeks before it takes place, inviting those few pilots and hoping they participate. There are races out there in the web you can join almost 24/7.

I'm pretty sure FSX is getting closer every week and Condor has it's limits, too.

You just have to know what you need the simulator for and then chose the one suiting best for you. That's not easy , I admit that.

Cheers,

Dirk.

Dirk,

You need to download Alpi 3.0 for Condor, and look at the graphics there. They are not as good as FSX, but they close. There is also another scenery download called Riete (sp?) that gives you most of Italy, and is by the same fellow that did Alpi 3.0. I have FSX, Condor, and Silent Wings. I haven't been able to get Cumulus!X/SimProbe to work yet in FSX, and have drifted away from SW. Condor has such a large, active community, and choices of where to fly, that it's #1 with me right now.

Binky9

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Well encouraged by the fun I have with ridge soaring in FSX, I downloaded the Silent Wings demo, but it's entirely lack lustre with the limited graphics, sure it's better for thermalling, but I enjoy the ridge running more and the open world of FSX let's me do that in more places with reasonable scenery, plus I found FSX gives me much better/smoother frame rates on my old PC, that's not something I say often (ever) with FSX. No demo of Condor to try, but the resolution settings don't cover 3 screens from what I read and limited Trackir support also, so I'm sticking with FSX until something better comes along. I fly FSX with a friend over the web and mix in FSRecorder sessions of previous flights, it makes it much more involving.

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While FSX is limited according to some sources, I am overall happy with soaring in it. The graphics and scenery are amazing and the flight model is pretty good, especially with CumulusX.

While not to stray too far off topic, how do X Plane and Flightgear weigh in against FSX and the dedicated soaring sims?

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Hi there,

I am a great fan of condor. I have silent wings as well, but found condor to be the more realistic (this issue is heavily debated on the silent wings and condor forums). There are sure many limitations to condor. The graphics and esp. aicraft models are more simple than FSX. You can not add any aircraft - this is because condor is mainly a competition soaring simulator and the developers want to guarantee a certain realism standard and avoid people using "improved" aircraft models to get better competition results. What makes condor and silent wings special is the flight model and the lift simulation. Both have very realistic simulation of thermals, ridge lift and waves. Silent wings simulates rotors, while condor comes with things like adiabatic lift. Thermals are not generated randomly, but depend on surface (fields>grassland>forest>water) and angle of the respective aria to the sun. Condor has quite an active comunity and there are many online competitions, free flight sessions, training lessons going on during the weekends.

Little picure of the condor thermal visualization:

Kind regards

Manuel

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Hi Manuell, I'm sure the dedicated soaring simulators give more precise simulation than FSX, however they are aimed at specific user types, particularly the Condor package which like you say focuses so much on competition flying.

With regard to thermal generation, being tied to (fields>grassland>forest>water), but unless that itself is realistically placed then it's no more accurate than a random setup, although the pilot does benefit from finding probable lift areas based on ground visual clues other than using an artificial visualisation. As I understand it FSX also places thermals based on specific landclass tiles, it just does a relatively poor job of it. There was a download somewhere that extended that definition a little, but the extent and thermal style is still a little lacking, hence the need for cumulusX random thermal generation. If FSX thermalling was developed a little more, I think it provides a super environment for the non-competition pilot.

If Condor provided a demo, I would certainly try it.

Cheers

Allan

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Condor sounds pretty neat, and the multiplayer support kicks ass so if we don't get an FSX multiplayer mission working I might have to try it. ManuelL thanks for the screenshot and Dirk thanks for the fair comparison. I'm very much a VFR pilot, often close to the ground, running three screens with triplehead2go, and for that setup the FSX graphics can't be beat. I suspect it's the multiplayer aspect of Condor that's the killer app - FSX has gradually accumulated thermals, ridgelift, flight models and glider instruments that are at least comparable to the dedicated soaring sims.

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Well said all. Not much to add.

FSX is improving, if your interested in screen shots and some short movies

about Condor check out http://team-falcon.us go to Movies or Galleries. It

will show you quit a bit.

Yes it would be good if there was a trial version, but I have heard from others

that they downloaded a version 106 or 108 something like that, Liked the program

uninstalled it then bought the full version. ( You cant join the online flights with those).

Mainly if you get version 112 and Plane Pack 1 you wont be disappointed,

http://www.condorsoaring.com/

There are over 5000 online Soaring pilots that use Condor and a large percent

fly RL also. You will find most are members of Condor Club http://www.condor-club.eu/

and there you will find Sceneries, Tasks, and the ability to earn your different Soaring

Badges and Diplomas.

We also fly FSX and are now starting to test out the new Discus. When we fly

online we use Hamachi to connect.

Condor to Kick A** and compete , You can also just fly for fun, there are many free flights

meaning no task assigned.

FSX to Have fun and sight see

When we figure out how to maintain scoring FSX would be more scenic for Comps.

Ken

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hey lighthorse nice necro!

there are some great videos on your site. I still think it's the multi-player that sets Condor apart - would you disagree? Maybe the ease of installation - for FSX there is still too much messing around installing add-ons but once you get there FSX is getting harder to beat.

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