Prepar3D v4 Available Now!

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Prepar3D v4 Available Now!

Postby OldAirmail » Wed May 31, 2017 5:22 pm

Prepar3D v4 – Available Now!

OK, I was going to wait and see how things worked out but I knew that I'd be buying it in the end anyway. :D

Price is for a new version, there is no "upgrade" price. Again, nothing that wasn't expected. This at least is a really big step up from V3 which could be looked at as a "New and Improved" version of FSX.

There is a number of significant improvements, and there will be a number of losses. From what I hear so far it's worth it.

The download is going very well. It projects an 18 min. Downloading and so far it's keeping up to that prediction.

I have a spare 250GB SSD. After the download I'll put that into my computer and install P3d V4 on it.

BTW - It's now recommended that you install V4 to an SSD.

Six minutes to go. See you on the other side of the 64bit sim world.
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Re: Prepar3D v4 – Available Now!

Postby Boromir » Wed May 31, 2017 6:25 pm

I was gonna wait too and then figured what the hey...get on with it. It's good, real good. Many old aircraft from P3D3 work fine (not all mind you), GoFlight already updated their drivers, other addon devs are updating their installers etc. So far very happy with the move. Had a little install issue: it did not present me the box to select an install location and just slammed it nto C:\program files x86\ you know the rest...I uninstalled it, rebooted, and then 'ran as administrator' the 'setup.exe' which then gave me the option. Good luck and may the fun be with you.
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Re: Prepar3D v4 – Available Now!

Postby OldAirmail » Wed May 31, 2017 8:03 pm

Same here - FIRST CLASS ALL THE WAY!!!!! :dance: :dance: :dance:

I don't even have it set up yet but it's already my favorite flight sim.

The speed loading is incredible.

FPS are sky high, but moving all of the sliders ALL the way to the max will drop it down into the low single digits. Not that I want everything maxed out. I have a hunch that V4 is going to be VERY hardware dependent - Don't expect a simple "Best Settings" list. Lots of playing to do here. Start with what's most important to you and work it out from there.

A lot of the planes, both freeware and payware, work with a simple drag and drop.
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Raw/basic scenery is somewhat better than FSX, and the new trees look better from a distance.

Free scenery from Blue Sky Scenery is also a drag and drop scenery - No problems at all.
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That's all for now folks, time to play some more.
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. . . . . .Any time, any plane, any weather.
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Re: Prepar3D v4 – Available Now!

Postby OldAirmail » Wed May 31, 2017 9:42 pm

I'm finding more planes that don't work. For instance, this Grumman_OZx_Goose_G21A is the only Goose that I have that works.

You have to be creative at times. Installation to a temp folder on the desktop is the best way many times. Then manually drag and drop to where thet need to go.

Even then you get an oddity now and then.
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But what's new. I'me sure that people have done their best to use old scenery & planes in newer sims for a long time now.

It's an adventure, right?
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Re: Prepar3D v4 – Available Now!

Postby Daube » Thu Jun 01, 2017 3:14 am

Thanks for opening that topic :)
I also bought the sim yesterday, but my attempt to download the 12 GB archive faced the cruel reality of my internet connection, which is too slow :/
I launched the download in the morning before going to work. It was supposed to be a 9 hours download. When I came back in the evening, the archive was there... it was 6 GB... Yes, the download stopped in the middle :twisted:

Anyways, I have read all possible feedbacks in various forums, and so far it's very clear P3Dv4 is the new king of the sims.
Concerning the performance, if the graphical options are set to the same level as P3Dv3 can reach (LOD_RADIUS and autogen draw distance can go much higher in v4 than in v3), most simmers are getting better performance in the v4 than they did in the v3. This includes testing with addon sceneries.

Concerning the addons, just like in DTG FlightSimWorld, most sceneries will work perfectly in P3Dv4. More complex sceneries, which require some external DLLs or modules like SODE, will require some update, else some objects will be missing.

Contrary to DTG FSW, the FSX native planes seem to work perfectly, as long as they don't use DLLs or external modules. Their cockpits are clickable too (not clickable in DTG FSW).
However, the FS9-format addons seem not to work at all anymore, but this is not really a problem. The only area impacted by this is the AI traffic, since all of the freeware AI traffic uses FS9-format airplanes. These packs will not work anymore, so you'll have to switch to payware AI traffic that use AI aircraft in native FSX format instead.

Concerning the new graphical options, there are some warnings:
- The autogen draw distance allows you to push the autogen appearance up to the horizon (almost). However, this has quite a high cost in performance, so you'll have to set that carefully. At least, you should be able to improve that ridiculously low default draw distance that plagued FSX...

- The dynamic lighting seems to be a bit exaggerated (way too powerful) in default planes, and for some users it is a real FPS killer ! (one user in avsim reported dropping from 50 FPS to low 20's....). I don't know if this is linked to some video card settings or anything like that...

- Despite that dynamic lighting, P3Dv4 is still very far away from the graphical quality of XPlane 11 at night. This is a little disappointment but for now it's compensated by the 64 bits architecture benefits. For now, we can only hope Lockheed continues to improve the lighting in future patches.

- Although the shader-modding tools like the famous PTA will not be available for P3Dv4 (authors have stated on the forums they won't be developping any new version), it seems the modified shaders from the v3 can be moved to the v4 without issues. This will be interesting to improve the lack of luminosity, saturation and contrast that P3D is famous for :P

- For those who never tried P3Dv3, I suggest a bit of caution when setting the "cast" and "receive" options for the shadows settings. The main dangerous points are the autogen objects: buildings and vegetation. In both cases, the "receive" option is not expensive in FPS at all, and it really improves the rendering (no more illuminated autogen in shadowed areas). However, the "cast" option can have a huge FPS impact in some cases. From my experience, the cast option for buildings has never been a problem. But the cast option for the vegetation killed my FPS in OrbX sceneries with dense forets (PNW). I expect the same behavior in v4.

That's pretty much it. P3Dv4 is there and a lot of addons from FSX or P3D are already usable, and more will come. Nevertheless, although the most famous addon makers (A2A, OrbX, PMDG, FSLabs etc...) have already promised a free upgrade of their products from P3Dv3 to P3Dv4, there is still no promise from VRS to update the TacPack (neither for free or for fee...). This is a major problem for all the people who fly military planes in P3D and we hope they will soon change their mind, or at least provide some news...
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Re: Prepar3D v4 – Available Now!

Postby zswobbie1 » Thu Jun 01, 2017 6:25 am

Very interesting to see how LM & DTG have marketed their products. So far, it seems we have a winner. The tribe has spoken.....
It would be very interesting to see a comparitive pictures of FSX, FSW & P3Dv4, using default scenery & the same plane, with no add-ons.
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Re: Prepar3D v4 – Available Now!

Postby SpaceHippy1975 » Thu Jun 01, 2017 8:27 am

Hi OldAirmail,

Thanks for sharing your findings so far, must admit I've already bitten the bullet myself.
Just started downloading now, it says it'll take approx 22minutes.

See you on the other side!

Keith.
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Re: Prepar3D v4 – Available Now!

Postby pete » Thu Jun 01, 2017 11:44 am

Thanks for sharing! Front page and FB posted. Will get this myself.
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Re: Prepar3D v4 – Available Now!

Postby OldAirmail » Thu Jun 01, 2017 6:24 pm

A note on performance.

I have FSX Acceleration on my mechanical hard drive and have kept it pretty much "standard". FPS on my system is about 150 (set on unlimited).

The FPS on Prepar3d V3, with most of the settings set as high as I want them and loaded with tons of scenery, is about 30-40. That may sound bad but I have all kinds of FPS killers like high detail clouds and almost everything casting shadows everywhere.

The FPS for P3d V4, on basic settings, is around 200-220FPS. There are a few here that have much better systems and should be doing better than myself.

I'm not worried about having the highest FPS so I'll be moving those sliders to the right.



About aircraft handling.

In the limited time that I played with V4 I can safely say that the few planes that I tried did handle differently. I like to fly general aviation planes and the sim planes did handle, somewhat, like what I experienced in a recent Cessna 172 flight.



Weathering the weather.

For the past six months I've been alternating between Active Sky 2016 for P3D (along with Active Sky Cloud Art SP1) and OpusFSI V 4.73.4.

To me, neither one is "Better". In certain situations one will do better than the other, and not by just a little bit either.

Nevertheless, OpusFSI V 4.73.4 worked with P3d V4 without any problems.

I have no doubt that a fix for Active Sky 2016 for P3D will be along pretty quick.


While on that subject, I find the basic clouds in V4 to be VERY good. I'll be very careful to preserve the cloud textures before I go messing around.



Whither I goest

One program that I enjoy, and use, a lot is Plan-G. At the moment it's not compatible with V4.

Plan-g is shareware so we'll just have to hope for the best.



What do the instrument say?

About five or six months ago I bought Air Manager V2.1.3. Essentially, it lets you put any of a fairly large number of instruments on any monitor. It IS NOT used to add instruments to 2-D or 3-D cockpits.

Obviously, it works with V4.
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Because it's, relatively, easy to modify or create instruments I'd strongly recommend this program, but a new version should be coming out this year.



It's a beautiful world - Orbx

If you have FTX Central 3, and you should if you use Orbx sceneries, than Prepar3d V4 will be added to the list. If it's not there then they're not ready.

BTW - I'm talking about the installer for the scenery that you've already bought - There is no update charge to go from V3 to V4.
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. . . . . . . . . . . . . Prepar3d V4
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Re: Prepar3D v4 – Available Now!

Postby OldAirmail » Thu Jun 01, 2017 8:37 pm

For what it's worth

I don't think that there are all that many people on Simviation using SPAD.neXt, but for any that do use it, or any who may be interested in using it, SPAD.neXt works well with Prepar3d V4.

The biggest caveat is that you'll need to go through your controllers in P3d V4 and remove any "automatic" assignations that all flight sims seem to set up. Things like assigning rudder control to your throttle lever.


I also don't think that there are many that are using FSUIPC in an active way. It might be built into some of your software, you just may not know it.

In any event, FSUIPC is a 32bit program that will not work with 64bit V4.

A few cockpit builders may be using FSUIPC. You may need to stick with P3d V3 or find another way to make your hardware work the way that you need it to.

Personally, I think that SPAD.neXt is the easiest way to make everything from Saitek Radio Panels or joysticks, to Leo Bodnar boards or Arduino boards work the way that YOU want it to.
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Re: Prepar3D v4 – Available Now!

Postby zswobbie1 » Fri Jun 02, 2017 2:09 am

Actually, FSUIPC is the most essential add-on you will ever have.
It allows you to calibrate your controllers, far better than the sim can. It allows you to allocate far fore key assignments that the sim does.. the pay-ware version, that is..

It also allows you to use your mouse wheel as a trim wheel.

There are quite a few plane add-ons that use the free version of FSUIPC, BUT the free version does not allow calibration.
It is very worthwhile to download the free version & look at the README documents. Pete Dowson, the developer of FSUIPC, is VERY active on his forum, &, provided you have read the documentation, he will answer all your queries within hours.

He HAS released a free 64bit version for P3Dv4 already, with the pay version shortly to be released.
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Re: Prepar3D v4 – Available Now!

Postby OldAirmail » Fri Jun 02, 2017 5:54 pm

zswobbie1 wrote:....

He HAS released a free 64bit version for P3Dv4 already, with the pay version shortly to be released.

Yes, I'd seen Paul's notice when I came home just now. Until then I knew nothing of the 64bit update. Updates of various software are coming out far faster than I would have thought.

As to the usefulness of FSUIPC, I've been pushing the FSUIPC sense 2013 when I paid for the full version.


FSUIPC lets just average people with VERY little programming ability do some sophisticated modifications. And if you can program, it's amazing what you can cook up.

SPAD.neXt is a quantum leap from the old SPAD and has the ability to work with FSUIPC built in. The combination of the two programs is so simple, and yet so powerful, that it can do just about anything.
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. . . . . . . . . . . . . Prepar3d V4
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Re: Prepar3D v4 – Available Now!

Postby gregj » Fri Jun 02, 2017 11:26 pm

I like it... a lot. Much better lighting, clarity, and FPS with all sliders right waiting for the rest of scenery to be added - all the base/land classes are up now. FSUIP5 in development - don't use the so-called beta version - Pete Dowson called me out on it today - as I wanted to know how to activate it. some people have retooled 4 to read as 5 and that's akin to robbery IMHO. I can wait for all the developers to catch up - as I "re-build" my sim to the much better 64bit version. I uninstalled everything from P3Dv3 once I was sure the new one would work and since it does, and it's summer - I'll enjoy my time outdoors and tune in frequently to update, add-on and check-out what's new. I really hope the majority of planes (heavies) and hovercontrol, and milviz helicopters will be compatible - Carenado and VRS too - (I paid for it - they should update it so it works). Can anyone tell me what the likelihood is for the newer versions of planes here on Simviation in downloads to be effectively working? Kinda hate to install w/o knowing they will work - and then bloat P3Dv4 with effects and gauges that don't uninstall when something that doesn't work needs to go. Does anyone have a work around for that?
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Re: Prepar3D v4 – Available Now!

Postby zswobbie1 » Sat Jun 03, 2017 12:08 am

Never use auto installers to install directly into the sim.
Always install into a temporary directory, read the Readme, then copy and paste into the sim. That way you know exactly what is there, and if the sim does not like it, you know exactly where to look and what to delete.
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Re: Prepar3D v4 – Available Now!

Postby OldAirmail » Sat Jun 03, 2017 12:17 am

So long as you don't have to do it too often, setting up a "new" sim can be fun. Well, maybe not.

But in searching for those things that you want, you can also find details that might be of interest.

A while back I mentioned that when flying light aircraft, they felt more like a real GA aircraft. That effect was due to the setting below. For those who fly big birds high in the sky, you may want to turn this one off. Me, I'll leave it on no matter what I'm flying.

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What it'll do is let the winds rock your aircraft as in real life.



One of the nicer things that I've noticed so far comes from our new ability to increase the distance that trees & buildings stretch into the distance. Sfter setting it to the max, I reduced it to somewhere between halfway and two thirds to the horizon. It really does make a nice difference. Also, I didn't notice any trees or buildings "popping" into being. Nice.



A year ago, I bought New York City X. At full detail it crashed FSX & P3d V3 within minutes.

Well, they'll be putting out a new installer, and I for one am egerly looking forward to flying New York City.
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. . . . . . . . . . . . . Prepar3d V4
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