Issues Receiving GSU VOR Signal in Atlanta Area on MSFS2020

Donald Evans Guest

I fly in and around Atlanta in many different aircraft tuned to GSU VOR and have not received the signal. I am typically VFR, 4500 to 9500 feet. I am using MSFS2020, and Win 11 on a top-of-the-line computer.

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Pro Member Captain
Ian Stephens (ianstephens) Captain
Ian Stephens is an expert on this topic. Read his bio here.

It's always a tad frustrating when you're expecting to receive a specific VOR signal, but it's just not showing up. Let's dive into potential reasons and solutions.

1. MSFS2020 Navigational Database:
First and foremost, the navigational data within Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 (and even X-Plane 12) can sometimes lack complete real-world accuracy. Though these platforms strive to mirror the real world, some navigational aids may not function precisely as in reality. Therefore, a missing or malfunctioning VOR might be a known issue.

2. Aircraft Avionics Configuration:
Always ensure your aircraft's avionics are set up correctly. While you mentioned you've tried various aircraft, sometimes a small oversight can lead to consistent issues across the board. A quick check: make sure the NAV radio is set to 116.9 and the related audio or display source is correctly selected.

3. Geographical and Atmospheric Interference:
VOR signals, being line-of-sight, can be obstructed by terrain or certain atmospheric conditions. While flying between 4500 to 9500 feet should generally keep you above such obstacles, it's always good to be aware of your environment.

4. Simulator Limitations:
Despite running the sim on a top-tier machine, MSFS2020's representation of the GSU VOR might not be 100% accurate due to how the simulator processes VOR data. This isn't necessarily a hardware issue but more about how the simulator's software handles VORs.

5. Potential Workarounds:

  • Cross-check with an external navigation tool like SkyVector or Navigraph to ensure you're in the actual range of the VOR.
  • Test the VOR reception in another flight simulator like X-Plane 12 for comparison.
  • Explore simulator forums or the official Asobo/MSFS forums to check if other pilots have reported similar issues and if there's a possible fix.

From my knowledge, ongoing updates to flight simulators can sometimes rectify such issues, or they can introduce new ones. You might want to keep an eye on patch notes to see if this particular VOR gets any attention in the future. If it's a widespread issue, it's likely to be fixed in subsequent updates.

In the meantime, while this doesn't replace the real-world feeling of tuning into a VOR and receiving its signal, consider utilizing the simulator's GPS system or another form of navigation to assist in your flights around Atlanta.

I hope this provides some clarity and potential solutions for your navigational challenges. Safe flying!

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