Tag Archives: PMDG

DC-6 Cloudmaster for FSX and Prepar3D Enters Beta

PMDG’s CEO, Robert Randazzo has announced the upcoming PMDG DC-6 Cloudmaster has gone to the beta stage.

Randazzo released the following statement:

“Concurrent with our other announcement regarding the 747, tonight we wanted to let you know that we have moved the PMDG DC-6 Cloudmaster for FSX, FSX-Steam Edition and Prepar3D into beta testing!

We still have some work to accomplish here but most of it is down to fine tuning the product and bringing in additional functionality that we are really excited to tell you about.

In the mean time, I have a few images of the old girl in Prepar3D- which I think you will find is a breathtakingly great platform for such a product.  The moodiness of the lighting, the clarity, reflective textures, bump mapping and animation capabilities really bring out the nuance and detail of this absolutely fantastic simulation!

We are in the process of moving a number of features from the 747-400 into the DC-6, such as sound processing and mouse handling- and we think these will really make this four engined beast feel like a good, well worn second home for PMDG pilots!

Stay tuned for more information and images as beta testing progresses.  These are exciting times here at PMDG…  THREE different four engine airplanes in the works all at once.”

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Queen of the Skies Returns

PMDG has released the the Queen of the Skies II for FSX and Prepar3D.

The 747-400 Queen of the Skies II has been developed over three years and building upon features of the PMDG 737NGX and 777 products.

PMDG has included every variant of the aircraft in this single package. The ubiquitous passenger 400 and freighter 400F models, the cargo-converted BCF, the “combi” 400M model, the extended range 400ER and 400ERF, and even the rare 400D domestic model that was used in Japan. Each variant is modelled with accurate weights, range and engine options.

No less than 35 pages of detailed options from the world’s 747-400 fleets are modelled. From the highly visible ones like antenna types and position all the way to obscure cockpit display and FMC options that real-world crews will recognize, it is the most complete set of options ever placed into an FSX/P3D addon aircraft.

The package also fetures a simulation of the PMDG 747-400 Queen of the Skies II models including the full functioning Virtual Cockpit, a detailed tutorial, PMDG 747 Tutorial and the PMDG OPS Center.

Click here for the PMDG website

PMDG 747-400 II Update

PMDG’s CEO, Robert Randazzo has revealed additional information on the upcoming PMDG 747-400 Queen of the Skies II.

Randazzo released the following statement:

“Captains,

As promised in my update from 18JAN17, I wanted to swing through tonight and give you some additional information on the upcoming release of the PMDG 747-400 Queen of the Skies II.

The following aircraft will be included in the initial release:

747-400         — 3 engine types

747-400BCF  — 3 engine types

747-400D      — 1 engine type

747-400M      — 2 engine types

747-400F      — 3 engine types

747-400ER   — 1 engine type

747-400ERF — 2 engine types

Each aircraft/engine combination has it’s own unique, accurate performance data, engine model and flight characteristics where that applies.  (The F flies slightly differently than the standard 400, did you know that?)

In addition to the Rolls Royce engine, you will be able to choose between two different GE versions (where it applies to the airframe) and two different PW engines where it applies.  (4056 and 4062…)

Yes…  All of that in the base package…  As a single purchase.  The 747-8/8F will come to you as an expansion for this base package a bit later!

In addition- we will include an SDK at release time, similar to the SDK included in the 777 and NGX.  This SDK is not for casual users, but is targeted toward hardware and application developers who wish to interface with the PMDG 747-400 Queen of the Skies II for their product interfaces or extensions.

Livery painters will not be forgotten, and we expect to have the paint kits or all of the above body types available to interested painters on release day.

WHAT PLATFORMS?:
Okay- so next- we will be selling licenses for the PMDG 747 base package across two simulation platforms:

FSX/FSX-Steam Edition will both be covered through purchase of an FSX based license.

Lockheed Martin Prepar3D will be covered through purchase of a P3D based license.

Both platforms will be available on release day.  The licenses for FSX/P3D are not interchangeable or exchangeable.  For Prepar3D users, we are still planning to protect P3D v3 users if/when Lockheed Martin elects to convert v3 to x64bit.  (it is assumed this will be called v4, but nobody really knows and Lockheed Martin has made NO commitments or announcements in this regard.  As of today, an x64 P3D is not in development that we are aware of any any conjecture of imminent release of same is largely hyperbole…)

COMPATIBILITY WARNING:
Currently the PMDG 747-40 Queen of the Skies II is not compatible with versions of Prepar3D earlier than 3.2.  We are evaluating if it is possible to make it compatible with v2.x but as of this writing, it does not appear that this will be possible.

WHEN WE WILL BE RELEASING?:
I’m going to narrow down the release timeline, based on our expectations as they stand right now:  We are within two weeks of release.

NOTE:  If anything comes up late in testing that we feel is a show stopper- we will slide the release date as far as it need to slide in order to cure the problem.  Please bear that in mind before you send your wives and kids off to Bolivia for vacation, take that leave of absence from work, or just outright quite your job.  :Tounge:

WHAT ELSE?
I am in the process of compiling a list of “okay, THIS is cool” details to show off some of the really interesting details and features that are packed into the PMDG 747-400 Queen of the Skies II.  We have a number of simulation experiences ready for you that will be entirely new to simming- and we expect them to add an entirely new level of realism and authenticity to your simming experience!

Additionally we have a few things buried in this build that we will unveil at a later date…  that will truly blow your mind.

Stay tuned for more details on those!

VAS USE:
We are putting together a little chart of VAS use to give you some real data on actual VAS use.

Overall, my experience has been that the 747-400 has better performance overall than the 777.  Frame rates are more fluid, and VAS use is more easily managed.  We will put together some real-time comparisons for you so that you can see where she weighs in!

PRICING:
Seriously though:  We will release pricing information when we tell you the actual release day…  You can expect it to be in line with the 777, roughly- which we think makes this package a pretty darn good value because you get the entire 747-400 product line to work with for a single purchase!”

Queen of the Skies Shaping Up

PMDG CEO, Robert Randazzo has announced the PMDG 747-400 Queen of the Skies II has moved to beta testing!

Randazzo continued: “This is a big weekend for the PMDG 747-400 Queen of the Skies II, as we begin the process of moving her from Tech Testing to beta testing at long last!

We have been working with our tech team since we assembled them back in late January, and they have been an incredibly valuable resource in making this product better, more accurate, and of course- more complete. I know our beta team tends to get all of the glory, because they are usually folks who also participate here in the forum and thus you get to know them personally- but I’d like to take a moment to thank all of our tech team members who have played an incredibly valuable role in helping us to move this simulation further and further along.

Our tech teams always surprise us with their knowledge and enthusiasm- and the team that has assembled to help us re-launch our flagship 747 product line is no exception. From obscure trivia to nuances to operationally based testing- no stone is going unturned and the results are really very good.

In fact- the tech team has caused us to evaluate replacing some key components in our simulation engine that will have long term benefits not only to the 747, but to the 777 and NGX as well. Some of these changes are already in place, and others are so major we elected not to include them in the initial release because of the risks to the release timeline- so we will be slipstreaming some fairly major updates into the usual post release update process. I am excited to tell you more about those changes- but I’m going to hold off a bit, just in case we pull a rabbit out of a hat and have them completed prior to release! Ultimately though, this means that the product will grow and expand in the post release phase- even more than the hundreds and hundreds of changes we have made to the NGX and 777 in their post release life cycles.

So with all of that said- we are currently in the process of preparing the aircraft to enter beta testing during the week ahead. Our beta team has been chomping at the bit for more than a year to have access to this product- but we have held off because we just didn’t feel we were ready for their input- given how much feedback we were receiving from our Tech team.

We have a put a huge amount of effort into animations on the outside of the model in order to please even the sharpest aircraft enthusiast. As with the 777, we are using an active fluid-flow and pressure model for hydraulics in the 747, and this has been expanded to include many of the flow-limiting devices that are used to control things such as gear doors and landing gear and occasionally flight controls as they near their range limits. By adding these features to the simulation, you will notice a greater fluidity, and natural motion with animations than is normally achieved with external part animations. No abrupt or instantaneous motion here- it is fluid and organic- which leads to a very convincing external model view.

We are also using some new techniques for external lighting that allow us to capture details such as the variable brightness landing lights that are a unique feature of the 747-400. Most users will never notice them- but those who really appreciate detail will see them for what they are: Another example of just how deeply into the simulation we take you!

Sticking with our moody, evening departure for a moment- here is a great shot of the flight deck as the ship is pivoting into position on the departure runway. What I cannot relay for you in this image is the sound the airplane makes as you conduct the turn. From the normal airframe shifting sounds to unique sounds emanating from the body gear steering or the nose gear if you abuse the turn rates, to the vibration of the nose gear slipping under tension, once again we are very focused on the use of sound in conjunction with animation to give you a very real sense of “being there” on the flight deck.

Lighting as usual, is a big part of immersing you in the sense of feel, and once again we have put an incredible amount of effort into making sure the lighting matches the actual airplane. From studying the wash and panel lighting, to making certain (as we have for more than a decade) that the various lights, indicators, annunciators and such are properly powered by the correct sources- to ensuring that the mix of lighting choices accurately interplays to give you the correct response to the dimmers and panel back lighting. All of it is there- just as always- with the advantage of continual subtle improvements in techniques and form.

With the base package, we are giving you three unique engine models, each with its own core engine simulation and sound package. Aficionados of the 747-400 will appreciate how accurate each ship sounds when compared with her real-world engine mates.

You will also see the old style MCP, with the incredibly annoying flutter digits making up the displays. When flying the airplane, there are few things more annoying when you are managing a complex manoeuvre than to have to wait around while the digits settle in from their energetic dance so that you can see if you got that ATC heading dialled in correctly or not.

This version of the flight deck is using the original style CRT displays mixed with an integrated standby flight display- and although you cannot see it in this image the autobrake selector is in the original position on the centre pedestal.

As always- we are cramming a HUGE number of options and configurations into the product so that you can match the equipment to a specific operator or tail number, thus increasing the level of realism in your simulation.

Also visible in this image is the Para-Visual Display, an interesting little techno device that uses input from the ILS and the FMS in order to increase the crew’s awareness of runway centreline tracking during low visibility conditions. We just got this operable this week, and I have been playing around with it some during my testing. For those who love gadgetry- this one will tickle the funny bone for sure- especially since you can run it through the self-test and dimming functions just like you would on the airplane in operation.

Now properly lined up, you get a good sense of the mood just prior to the start of business in earnest. The low visibility, diffuse lighting in the flight deck offset slightly by Jason’s turning up some of the panel flood lighting slightly in order to increase visibility of items on the panel a bit. All of it gives a very good sense of just how beautiful this product is when used with Lockheed Martin’s Prepar3D.

All of the images in this preview were taken using Lockheed Martin’s Prepar3D v3.4. While our technical testing has been taking place, we have been quietly prepping the Prepar3d version of the PMDG 747-400 QOTSII for testing simultaneously in P3D by both our Tech and Beta teams starting (we hope) this week.

The plan, as of today, is to release both platforms side by side… but there are some interesting challenges to accomplishing that goal- so it is still entirely possible that we might hold the Prepar3D version back while we complete updates that are unique to the v3.4 platform.

We are hoping that this won’t happen- but if it does- the time delta between the two releases should be relatively short. (He says… now… Hoping nothing crops up to make him eat his words…)

Now that we are pushing her out to the beta team- I expect you will begin to see far more information from us and from them… as we start winding up development and moving her toward release!”

Cloudmaster Arrives in Mac OS X

The PMDG DC-6B Cloudmaster Base Package for X-Plane 10 is now available for Mac OS X.

The OS X version is sold as a separate product for either Windows or for Mac.

The PMDG DC-6 Cloudmaster Base Package features an accurate cockpit, a realistic flight and engine model, including auto-leaning, caged throttles, complex engine starting, full propeller control, highly accurate simulations of the electrical, fuel and hydraulic systems, accurately displayed flight and engine performance data along with detailed manuals.

The package has been tested with X-Plane 10.45 for Mac OS X. Compatibility with different X-Plane versions will be updated as they are made available, and may require software updates depending upon changes made by Laminar Research.

Click here for more information on PMDG’s website