i bought this plane as this month i'm loving semi-acrobatic, nippy little planes - such as the bellanca decathlon and lancair legacy.
please note the pics are from the site, not that it makes any difference - they just don't have my pretty scenery
i bought this plane also as it has a maintenence mode - so you can see tire wear, oil changes and the plane even gets dirty! i then read i could take the key out of the ignition - sold!
it loads up fast enough in the aircraft menu - good. it's very neat and clean looking, not really that complex, but i suppose it suits the real aircrafts smooth lines. i chose the camo paint job as it's the best.
on loading it up it's quite ok, a few frames lost when spinning around the outside. i can open the main door..and i think that's it nevermind. i do like being able to open up engine bays etc though.
the textures are as you;d expect. very smooth and nice to look at. no complaints apart from how crap some of the paints are!
The panel loads up quickly, and the gauges are nice and smooth as you'd expect. The panel has many pop ups to enlarge instruments, and you can switch between pilot, passenger and VFR views. what did annoy me in passenger view is the spelling error, the sign stating 'ALOT' instead of 'a lot'. Bitmap quality is nice, the autopilot and radios especially. Iy's certainly not the best panel bitmap i've seen - too smooth and little texture.
Virtual cockpits in small aircraft are a must, and the pictures on the site make it look rather nice - indeed they are. the picture above tells no lies! what i did like though was the reflective glass, it's a small touch, but i love it. However the vc does cause a few lost frames and sometimes an annoying stutter.
Flying such a small plane with 200hp is interesting. the thing takes off in very short spaces - great fun! i even managed to get it over the tree on the default courcheval. it rolls and spins easily, and the control feels nice and tight. When coming in to land it never got too jittery and i had little problem lining up.
landing it however isn't quite that simple. Having such power the torque gives a very definate left tendancy. The other problem is that the thing doesn't really slow down! shifting to almost idle throttle and full flaps at least 8nm away (for a long runway) seems to be the trick. Handling on the ground is easy.
the rv7-a has a tricycle gear, so it is a bit easier to land and take off, however i found taxxing impossible due to an error with the nose wheel - eep. support hopefully will sort that out. the a version includes autopilot and flaps - so it's better to use on the longer distances.
I do suggest some modifications. Firstly i got the camo texture from almost 50mb to 15mb, just by converting to DXT3 format. Now it loads instantly with no stutters when in chase cam view. Sweet!
i noticed the overall package neared 400mb - why? well the sounds are duplicated and the textures are duplicated. I deleted 3 liveries - total saving 120mb (without having compressed textures). result? brilliant. after compressing textures there are no stutters to be found anywhere and my aircraft folder looks a bit better. definate mod and only a few mins to copy some config info over.
The documentation is excellent and really does help. enough said.
Now, the maintenence mode. it often doesn't load up properly, however i found dragging it around the screen (it's invisible, but it's in the centre) and pressin return gets it to how it should be. not really a problem. Anyway. I found it quite fun, and it is interesting to see how much running the thing costs. plus, the dirt is cool
OVERALL: it's worth $8 for sure. A very solid product - fun to fly, good to look at, nice paintkit, 2 models and good vc. The only problems i had were with file size (an easy mod) and the strange behaviour of the maintenence mode - but it takes like 3 seconds to fix. 9/10 - for the price.
3.2ghz Pentium 4
256 Nvidia Graphics
1g RAM (dual 512's)
flight time: 4-5hrs ish
Great review hinch
I missed it the first time around 'cause I got impatient waiting for the pictures to load. Silly me...
Very nice review hinch. The model looks very detailed
just to add, support had never heard of my nose wheel problem. they were very good and quick however. fortunately i found the error myself in the config where the nose wheel could apparently steer 180 degrees - thus only in a straight line. sorted now and i loves it.