A thief in the night, or why I will buy P3d V3

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A thief in the night, or why I will buy P3d V3

Postby OldAirmail » Tue Oct 06, 2015 7:58 pm

A thief in the night day might be more accurate.


This goes back to last Christmas when I bought an SSD for my wife's laptop.

Mostly she surfs the net, plays games, and downloads viruses.


Well, last year I spent about three or four hours removing viruses. I then cloned her hard drive to a new SSD and installed it in her laptop.

She was amazed, and quite pleased, how fast her laptop had become. Removing viruses can do that to a computer. As well as a very fast drive.


But time goes by, she downloads more viruses, spills coke on the keyboard, and even into the vents in the back of the laptop.

One thing or another made her think that she should get a new laptop with that new operating system, Windows 10. After all a girl should have the latest toys, right?



Saturday the new laptop came. I got it set up for her and connected to the internet and the printer.

She still wants to hang onto the old laptop for a while.


So I did what every "real" man have would. I cloned the SSD back onto her old laptop drive, and put it back into the old laptop (that she's no longer using).

What to do with a fast Samsung SSD? :think:

:idea: Get Prepar3d V3 anyway, and put it on it's own SSD. :D



I might as well. It's not like the $60 is going to break me. At least for now.

True, Prepar3d V3 doesn't have a lot of "real" changes. And reading the Prepar3d forums people either have major problems, or they love it.

And reading those posts from the people with the problems...... well.... I think that some might have a problem loading Ms. Packman.

Most of the problems that I'm seeing are "Permissions" problems, or things like we've all dealt with in setting up FSX.

Remember the problems back then? Things like random button assignments being set up for joy sticks, etc.



Then too, when I bought Prepar3d V2.1 it was absolutely horrible. It took about two or three months for updates to make it usable.

But in the end it became good enough (for me) to replace FSX.



The drive is now in my computer. Time to tell old man Martin that I'll accept his flight sim, and hope that he fixes it soon. :D
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Re: A thief in the night, or why I will buy P3d V3

Postby Capt_Cronic » Tue Oct 06, 2015 9:07 pm

well despite my doubts of any real improvement, I broke down and got v3.
I get better fps with higher settings,
no more micro studders,
all my payware works,
orbx, rex, pmdg, dodosim, a2a, etc..

so far Im very supprised and pleased.

only tweek I had to do was add the affinity mask in the cfg (highly recommended)
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WD 500GB SATA 3, ASUS DRW-24B1ST SATA 3, OCZ ModXStream Pro 700W Modular, Samsung 52" lcd, Win 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
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Re: A thief in the night, or why I will buy P3d V3

Postby OldAirmail » Tue Oct 06, 2015 10:57 pm

I've downloaded it tonight but haven't played with it much.

Despite all of the AMD video card people having problems, I've had almost none.


I was prepared to roll back the drivers but it wasn't needed.

Driver Packaging Version - 15.20.1062.1004-150803a1-187669C
AMD Catalyst Control Center Version - 2015.0804.21.41908


I've set up all three sims - FSX, P3d V2.5, P3d V3 - to share the same add-on folders on a different drive without any problems. At least so far.

Image


There were some visual problems with a couple of tested aircraft, but most of the ones that I've tested, even two FS2004 aircraft, had no problems.


All in all, it's pretty much like a fresh re-install. Everything needs to be set up.


As most of my settings aren't completed, I can't say about the FPS, but it seems to be working well.

Full screen over three monitors works slightly different than V2.5, but not in a bad way.


Both V2.5 & V3 are on SSDs so I can most definitely say that V3 loads faster.


I've used it too little to get anything more than an impression, but that impression is that V3 has a lot of eye candy improvements - smoother & better looking.

The HDR sliders can make significant improvement. Gone are the dark cockpits, but I have no modifications yet so I'll have to hold comment on that.

One odd improvement that is VERY noticeable is the light & scenery reflected off the cockpit windows - VEREY realistic looking. Eye candy, but a very nice minor improvement.

More than that I can't say, I'll be playing with it for at least a week or two. :D
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. . . . . . . . . . . . . Prepar3d V4
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Re: A thief in the night, or why I will buy P3d V3

Postby OldAirmail » Tue Oct 06, 2015 11:59 pm

Here's an example of the only noticeable problem, and so far it isn't common.

The Spartan Executive

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And this is the Executive metal flake red

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Re: A thief in the night, or why I will buy P3d V3

Postby SpaceHippy1975 » Fri Oct 09, 2015 11:40 am

Hey OldAirmail,

I see you've gone over to the dark side! (v3) I'm still umm-ing & arrr-ing about doing it myself. Can you tell me if my biggest 2 bugbears are still there/have been changed;

Being able to access the various crucial settings such as the scenery library, display, general, sound & controls. To be able to make changes to them without having to start a flight before hand.

&

Going straight back to the default Langley AFB/F-22 Raptor scenario whenever I accidentally have a "hard landing/crash" (I know you can set up & save a scenario but I'm the kinda guy that changes things around on a whim!)

I've also been a naughty boy & have just bought myself an upgrade consisting of;
A Quad Core I7 6700K Skylake & Arctic Freezer 7 Pro Rev 2 CPU Cooler,
Gigabyte Z170 Motherboard SLI,
Kingston HyperX Fury Black 16GB Dual Channel DDR4 RAM,
But I'm Keeping my AMD Radeon R9 290 GPU though!

So I'm looking at P3D v3 at some point, IF your recommendation sways my opinion ;) (I've always tended to listen to advice coming from the Old Timers/Old Folk! :lol: )

Keith.
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Re: A thief in the night, or why I will buy P3d V3

Postby OldAirmail » Fri Oct 09, 2015 4:56 pm

I think that this might be fairly simple, unless you have Windows 10, that is.

If you have Win 10, just keep on flying whatever you have. Windows 10 has thrown a monkey wrench into the mix with a lot of necessary drivers missing.

Likewise, if someone has a computer that is very old. Graduating to a newer class of flight sim could be too expensive.



For those that already have Prepar3d V2.x, the choice is much harder. Prepar3d V3 is better in many small ways than V2.x.

But if you are not having "out of memory" errors now, you can probably wait for the next full number update, V4.

I, mostly, fly low and slow. I almost never run out of memory. So even though I have no memory problems, I've bought it because at some point it will become something far better than FSX.


People who do fly the big birds high, fast, and over many major cities do have problems. In that respect, Prepar3d V3 is a major improvement.

It hasn't completely fixed the problem, but many high flyers say that it's much, much better with few if any OOMs.






For anyone who does not have Prepar3d V2.x, and who think that they can learn something from Prepar3d, should buy Prepar3d V.3.

The many small tweaks have made it a significant improvement on FSX.



OK, Keith. Your turn.


"Being able to access the various crucial settings such as the scenery library..."

Installing scenery in the scenery library is MUCH better than it was with FSX.

First, there's no Mickey Mouse routine. You click on it and hit OK.

Second, if there is an error in the scenery library, V3 will ask you if you want to simply delete it. YOU don't have to track it down.


On the other hand, if someone didn't create the aircraft.cfg file properly you'll receive a notice about it. If that aircraft.cfg causes you any problems this can be beneficial. It it doesn't cause errors, this can become annoying.



"....display, general, sound & controls."

"To be able to make changes to them without having to start a flight before hand."

Just about any setting, scenery, or aircraft, can be changed during a flight without having to restart the flight. Easy as pie.

These settings are mostly different, rather than better. At least from the V2.x standpoint.

In order
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The HDR is a great improvement, but one set, you'll probably never change it.
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One big change is calibration. You're supposed to do it in -> Control Panel\Hardware and Sound\Devices and Printers.

The only problem is that for some people, not all Saitek equipment is showing there.

My Saitek throttle, for one, isn't there. Luckily for me, I can calibrate it in FSUIPC. But how many people will buy FSUIPC just for that?

Image

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More weather settings under Customize
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"Going straight back to the default Langley AFB/F-22 Raptor scenario whenever I accidentally have a "hard landing/crash" (I know you can set up & save a scenario but I'm the kinda guy that changes things around on a whim!)"

I can't think of anything worse, for me, than starting a flight sim in a default flight, and then having to make individual changes one after another while in the default flight.

I ALWAYS start in the Scenario Setup mode. It's always set to my default flight, and I can make any, or all, changes without starting a flight.

Image






In the end, my viewpoint is that Prepar3d V2.x was a bit better than FSX. Enough so that I had moved completely over to P3d.

As far as comparing Prepar3d V2.x and Prepar3d V3, I have to say that most of the "improvements" will affect very few people.

However, Prepar3d V3, in total, is a enough of an improvement over FSX, to make it worthwhile buying.



But unless you like being a pioneer, you may want to wait a while until the software companies catch up.

The old software will usually work. Programs that "self install" will not work, but if you can manually install it, it has a good chance of working.


Think of it as when people manually installed FS9 sofware into FSX. Sometimes yes, sometimes no.

Now compare that to trying to use FSX aircraft or scenery in X-Plane 10. Ain't gona work.
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Re: A thief in the night, or why I will buy P3d V3

Postby SpaceHippy1975 » Sun Oct 11, 2015 7:49 am

Thanks for the reply OldAirmail, lots of interesting & useful info there, sorry if I'm coming accross a bit dim but I'm still unsure as to if you're able to access all of the major settings at the first screen, where you can choose the location & the aircraft you want to use before you start flying (without having to start the flight first to access them)

I'll be installing windows 10 onto my new build so I think I'll hold off on getting v3 for a little while yet, minor annoyances aside, I'm reasonably happy with v2.5

Thank you again for your kind help!

Keith.
Flying: MSFS 2020 & P3D v5 ~ Given up on X-Plane 11
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Intel Core i7 - 6700K CPU @ 4.5GHz,
ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero Z170 Motherboard,
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Re: A thief in the night, or why I will buy P3d V3

Postby OldAirmail » Sun Oct 11, 2015 9:13 am

If you're going to get Windows 10, most definitely don't get Prepar3d V3, at least not right now.

A few have no problem, but too many other people are having problems with that combination.


As far as the other question, I choose to have Prepar3d start up with this screen.

Image

If it suits me, I just hit Enter, and my slight starts.

But if I feel like changing the plane, time of day, location, weather, or one of the other settings, it only takes a few seconds.


For what it's worth, V3 starts about two and a half times faster than V2.X.


Another "for what it's worth" - a great many people are blaming Prepar3d for their problems, when it's very clear that they don't have a clue about setting it up.

I think that they're used to games, and not flight sims at all.

Before V3 came out, there were a lot of familiar faces posting on the P3d site.

Now, the questions are so simplistic and childish that the LM staff rarely get involved.

They will respond if you have a real problem or question, but if you're one of the hundreds who just can't figure out how to setup a joystick.....
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Re: A thief in the night, or why I will buy P3d V3

Postby Daube » Mon Oct 12, 2015 4:24 am

How's your experience so far with the V3, after these few days flying it ?
I have not bought it yet, but that will happen very soon I think. My 2.4 needs some good cleaning, so this would be a good opportunity for me to uninstall it completely, alonside with all the addons.
From there, installing the v3 from scratch, on a system free of any FS-related addons, might be a wise move. For me, at least.

I read on other forums that the virtual cockpits in the FS9 planes are now clickable again, but only for 3D switches. Switches in 2D are still not clickable, but it's better than nothing. Some recent FS9 planes have some nice all-3D virtual cockpits and might be worth adding in the P3Dv3 hangar, especially if we consider that they will get self-shadows, VC shadows, and no "props/canopy behind clouds/autogen". Sure, they won't get any bumpmaps or nice shine like FSX native models, but for some kind of aircrafts or paintings, this is not a problem at all.

I could watch a few test videos of the V3 which looked pretty convincing, regarding the memory usage, and thus the reduction of the risk of "out of memory" errors. Of course when adding so much addons and high res textures etc... the sim will still crash, but at least it's going in the right direction. However I have not seen any serious reviews regarding the graphic evolution. It seems they fixed a few things with the clouds and they improved some performance stuff with the heavy sceneries, but I have yet to read a real comparison on this.
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Re: A thief in the night, or why I will buy P3d V3

Postby Daube » Mon Oct 12, 2015 5:03 am

So, I'm going to answer my own questions :D
I just got lucky and found that video from the famous "FroogleSim", and it's quite a good review with a lot of interesting information. Not always accurate, but very helpful to get a first opinion.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xfz6eTqDPxc[/youtube]
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Re: A thief in the night, or why I will buy P3d V3

Postby OldAirmail » Mon Oct 12, 2015 11:16 pm

I think that the best way to describe V3, is that it's what I wanted V2.X to be.


On the other hand, you might want to hang on to the P3d V2.X for a while. Keeping it in your system isn't going to interfere with V3 at all.

There could be many problems with add-on software & hardware to be resolved. In which case you'll want V2.X around.

That's what a lot of people are reporting, anyway.


Having said that I've had a great deal of success setting up my hardware/software.

I have an AMD R9 280X video card with an newer driver. It works perfectly. Others find that V3 doesn't work with AMD R9 cards, unless they drop the driver back to a 2014 version.


Seriously, many of the complaints appear to come from people with absolutely NO flight sim experience.

A steadily growing number of those complaints come from people with both Windows 10 and Prepar3d V3.



I can say is that it works great for me on Windows 7 Pro, and that all my Saitek hardware works flawlessly. Ditto for TrackIR.

Once set up, there's a fairly significant FPS improvement. Switching between V2.5 and V3 gets me about 20 extra FPS.

That was tested with the same UK airport in each version, and with the FPS set to unlimited.



I think that the LOD looks better. Trees, for instance, do pop into view in the distance, but they do so at a smaller size, a speck really, and more spread out.

The end result is that the outer LOD creeps closer, rather than jumping into being in large sections.

This is hard to see, and could be a result of my video card & settings.

Whatever, it does look smother.


The backward compatibility is another plus. You can't guarantee 100%, but that's life. Things change.

Installing some scenery and ancillary programs works just fine.

Many, like A2A AccuFeel install by simply redirecting the installer.

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There may be some hard spots, but I've been able to think around the problem.

None were beyond what most of us have learned to do in FSX.



Prepar3d V3 is much better than the bug fix list leads you to expect.
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Re: A thief in the night, or why I will buy P3d V3

Postby Daube » Wed Oct 14, 2015 8:04 am

Finally this morning I took some time to cleanup my computer from any FS addons, and I uninstalled P3D v2.
Then I proceeded to install the v3... which took much longer than I expected. First of all, I had forgotten about this stupid installer than requires several gigabytes of free space on my C drive, even though I was installing to G drive... So I had to move a few files to free enough space, then the installation worked without problems. But I lost too much time and I could not really perform a real flight.

I just had two minutes to push the graphic settings to almost maximum, and then trigger a takeoff with the F-22 from KSEA. With my FPS locked at 30, I was getting a stable 16 FPS with the AI traffic on.
Then I switched that off and it went up to 18 FPS.
Then I switched the FPS limit to "unlimited" and it rose to 26 FPS, which is not bad in that area.

Anyways, tonight if I have time, I'll start installing some addons again, including some very heavy scenery that used to kill the FPS in P3Dv2 (FranceVFR with 3DAutomation sceneries). I'm very curious to see the results.
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Re: A thief in the night, or why I will buy P3d V3

Postby OldAirmail » Wed Oct 14, 2015 8:26 am

Depending on how much space you have on your other drive, you might want to try this - Magically make more space available on your C: drive.

I've been using this for years without any problems.

Junction links / Symbolic links have been a part of Windows going back to XP.

It freed up just over 60GB from my SSD C: drive.



I also use it to share "Add-on" file between FSX, Prepar3d V2.5, and now Prepar3d V3.

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Not only is it invisible the sim, but it's even invisible to paid software installs.
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. . . . . .Any time, any plane, any weather.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . Prepar3d V4
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