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PMDG 747: My Opinion

Pro Member Chief Captain
CrashGordon Chief Captain

I thought I saw a post recently where someone asked for opinions about the PMDG 747. At the time, I didn't own one so I didn't reply.

Got it this morning and have been flying ever since, so I figured I'd post this.

First, the plane is rather pleasant to fly by hand...if you remember how much weight and mass you've got...and don't try to break the laws of physics. I flew it from KLAX to KPHX by hand since I knew the route, the heading and landmarks. It takes off just like the real ones. The engines have that same growl. When I landed, I came in slightly low, but shallow. Guess I didn't want to drop all that weight onto a runway too abruptly. Not a perfect landing since I used more runway than I should have, but hey, for a first try...not bad.

Taxiing the plane goes well. Just remember how much plane you're moving.

If you are used to the PMDG 737NG or the Level-D 767, navigation won't be difficult. If not, read the manuals. For my part, I wish the manuals were in HTML format, rather than in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) because then I could more easily bookmark things I used frequently.

Last but not least, it has the best V/C I've seen and it is frame-rate friendly.

Pro Member Captain
Jared Captain

Why thanks for remembering my post. I've heard so much positive feed back from a ton of people. Well i'm glad you like it. The only reason I am not sure about getting it right now is because I am not a fan of long haul flights. I love taking my King Air out and doing 1 hours or 2 hour flights. Thats the reason.

Pro Member Chief Captain
CrashGordon Chief Captain

About the only negative thing I have found is that while the V/C shows tool tips when your mouse is over something (including the PMDG cola can where it says, "only 1250 calories"), the 2D panel has no tool tips.

But, you are right that if you don't like long flights, it isn't a good choice.

I think I'm done buying planes for a while. Well maybe the Legandary Herk, when it comes out. 🙄

Pro Member Captain
John Hodges (originalgrunge) Captain

Yeah, I got to know the 747 very well this weekend! I took my checkride for UVA from IAD to Heathrow, and faced all sorts of weather, conflicts, and you name it. I sat in the cockpit for nearly the entire flight, and saw it in all of its stages!

It truly is a remarkable aircraft, and by far the most realistically modeled out there. It deserves the "groundbreaking" 5 Star rating from AVSIM! In case you were thinking that your LDS 767, PMDG 737, PSS Airbus, or any number of aircraft in your arsenal are as real as it gets, just fly a day in the PMDG 744! By the checklists (for normal procedures, not to mention all the things that could possibly go wrong with this thing!) it takes me about 30 minutes from start to finish to get the plane ready for departure, with some of the most inter-dependent systems I've ever seen! If you skip a step, expect your failures to start piling up on you!

The plane is great to sit in for long hauls too. With the FMC fully functional, there's tons of fuel calculations, fix-bearings, etc. that you could be watching/tinkering with...the fuel tanks usually have to be set/adjusted mid flight (I.E. cross feeds, OVD pumps, etc), and several times at that!

Crash is definitly right though, you have to remember that you're flying something roughtly 5 times larger/heavier than your average 737 (and that's on final too!), but it's not that hard to learn anew.

There are still bugs to be worked out though. I'm starting to learn of a new one that I've been the victim of (and some other people with similar issues), where the throttles become un-synced when you dis-engage the autothrottle. (I.E., when you're on final and switch it off to retard the throttles, your controls usually only work for engine 1, with the other's still at N1 of 70% or so!!)

It really is a great craft for anyone interested!

Pro Member Chief Captain
CrashGordon Chief Captain

Here is an example of attention to detail. When extending flaps, don't forget to wait untill the panel indicator turns green before extending further. It gets rather noisy in the cockpit, otherwise. 😂

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