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twharrell

MindStar GNS530 integration

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Hi, folks. I've been testing the MindStar GNS53/430 avionics package in the Twin Otter Extended. First of all, congrats to Aerosoft on an awesome aircraft. just purchased the Twin Otter Extended yesterday to try it out the GNS530 and the gauge works perfectly! The gauge package will be released very soon, FYI.

The only "hitch," which isn't MindStar's or Aerosoft's fault, is the gauge cannot be placed in the VC. I was looking at the panel.cfg file last night, wondering if there is any way to do this. SImply replacing the default GPS entry in the VC with the MindStar gauge didn't work like I hoped, but wasn't surprised. I know Aerosoft modelled the GNS530 as part of the VC (as is standard by al developers these days) and it cannot be simply removed. Just so people know, the MindStar gauge is very different from the RXP gauge in the way it is modelled and coded (I won't go into detail). If one of the fine folks at Aerosoft has a possible solution for the VC integration please PM me.

I really think people will enjoy this unit in the Twin Otter, and I hope Aerosoft and MindStar can talk about how to integrate this gauge in the VC. Until that happens (if that happens) this GNS530/430 package can still be very much enjoyed as a 2D pop-up, as it integrates with the Twin Otter's flight control unit and HSI seemlessly.

OK, I have a Twin Otter flight to Telluride to catch.

Todd

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The best way to make this happen is to get Mindstar to contact Aerosoft unlike reality XP. If it woks, I can see both Mindstar and Aerosoft benefiting from this.

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Just so people know, the MindStar gauge is very different from the RXP gauge in the way it is modelled and coded (I won't go into detail).

Of course, as RXP is actually an interface to Gramin's trainer, which executes on background, and I guess Mindstar version is a custom coded gauge that provides GNS's most important functions, though using FSX style on its map display.

BTW, Mindstar compatibility with VC installs will depend on its own capacity for handling GPS events, so it's more something that had to be considered by Mindstar when making the code.

Tom

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OK, here are a couple of screenshots. I apologize that I didn't get any shots during my flight, as I had to stop right after takeoff to tend to the kiddos. This is the third aircraft I have tried it in and have had no issues with integration. The gauges are smooth and Ihave had no issues with flights in Prepar3D (smooth framerates).

You get both the 530 and 430 with the package, including crossfill, FYI. The ability to enter airways into the flightplan will be added to the 530 in a month or two, and WAAS will be added to both later this year.

Tom, you are essentially right with your comparison of this gauge with the RXP gauge. This gauge is custom coded from the ground up. I am not a software engineer, so I'll leave the details of making it all work together in the VC to the guys who make it all happen. I hope MindStar and developers like Aerosoft can work something out with VC integration, because this is a nice package. Just so you know you'll be getting with this package: these very gauges are already being used commercially in Redbird and other Simulators around the world. Pretty cool for MindStar to make it available to the flight sim community.

And I agree, this just puts the icing on an already outstanding aircraft.

Todd

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post-46187-0-77778300-1381120810_thumb.j

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Quite interesting Todd. But it is still in beta? I couldn't find anything on MIndstar's website.

Also it would be interesting if it could yous NavdataPro as database.

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Technically, it isn't in beta because it already is being used commercially. The unit works fine. I'm just trying it in various addons I have to see how it works.

Neither NavData Pro nor Navigraph will be implemented. Mindstar uses uses a company called RealNav, which also provides AIRAC updates for its commercial customers. I know some people won't like that, and I do understand the frustration of using multiple AIRAC subscription providers. But understand Mindstar's gauges were created for the commercial simulator marketplace. That has been and always will be their main focus. An annual RealNav subscription is $40USD and includes 5 update cycles. That will bother some, but consider you are getting a commercial level AIRAC. I actually like it a lot. And just FYI, I also use Aerosoft's Navdata Pro for my other addons. RealNav does not offer AIRAC updates for any other flight sim addon so it does not compete with Navigraph or Navdata Pro. For me, it's Navdata Pro for my jets and RealNav for my GNS and G1000 units.

Todd

Todd

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Too bad, 40 USD for only 4 updates is IMHO too much. But maybe, when Mindstar aims the "home" simulator market, they will consider to make it possible that also NavdataPro can be used, as both Navdatapro and RealNav got the same source: Lufthansa Systems.

Until then....

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Too bad, 40 USD for only 4 updates is IMHO too much. But maybe, when Mindstar aims the "home" simulator market, they will consider to make it possible that also NavdataPro can be used, as both Navdatapro and RealNav got the same source: Lufthansa Systems.

Until then....

Well, I think it is a great question to ask the guys at MindStar directly. I can tell you first hand they are very responsive and helpful if you contact them by phone or email (both can be found on their website). If enough people request compatibility with Navdata Pro, you never know! It certainly never hurts to ask.

As for the $40USD pricepoint, there might be certain database features available through Realnav (such as WAAS data for example) that Aerosoft may have chosen not to include. That is purely speculation on my part. Do remember, Realnav caters primarily to the commercial sim market, which demands certain features that may be deemed unnecessary for the flight sim entertainment market.

Commercial subscribers to Realnav pay several hundred dollars annually. So, while Navdata Pro and Realnav both use Lufthansa Systems, I have a feeling we may not be comparing apples to apples, in terms of what you get. Again, pure speculation on my part, and in no way am I suggesting one is better than the other, just different in terms of the markets they are each targeting.

Todd

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Our NavDataPro is able to provide the complete AIRAC data but it depends on the tool or aircraft what is actually used. I am surprised about the price asked for the updates and hope they will consider users to use the same data from Navigraph or NavDataPro. We sell 13 datasets (a full year) for $32 and Navigraph is about the same price.

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Unfortunately one of the MindStar developers had this to say over at the AVSIM forums...

1. Mindstar can not legally provide a copy of the RealNav database without a corresponding subscription. It is what it is and it's not going to change, move on.

2. Mindstar's units are used in real world training and as such can not be paired with a database source that can not legally be used for training. That would be both Navigraph as well as NavDataPro. Neither are licensed for training use. Changing the GNS units to use those databases would open up a massive can of legal worms. That isn't going to happen, move on.

Regarding current nav data with an addon... when I approached Navigraph for the Eaglesoft Citation X... Navigraph gave me a very specific copy of the database to distribute with the aircraft for installation. It was way out of date. It was and still is the onlyversion of the database that addon can be sold with. If other addon vendors are shipping with the very latest, I have to wonder why they would be given a different "deal".

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Regarding current nav data with an addon... when I approached Navigraph for the Eaglesoft Citation X... Navigraph gave me a very specific copy of the database to distribute with the aircraft for installation. It was way out of date. It was and still is the onlyversion of the database that addon can be sold with. If other addon vendors are shipping with the very latest, I have to wonder why they would be given a different "deal".

This is simple: Most get a database that is current at the day of the product release. Afterwards they may not change it. Of cause I am not sure if this was the case here, but this is what I would expect.

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Is there a possibility for a full VC integration of the Mindstar GNS530 unit? I would love to have this one in the twin otter.

Kind regards,

Jorik

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Is there a possibility for a full VC integration of the Mindstar GNS530 unit? I would love to have this one in the twin otter.

Kind regards,

Jorik

Sorry, we don't plan to do that.

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