Hello, I am a cadet from a cadet from Central and East Yorkshire Wing. I am trying to identify the best VR RTX Flight Simulator for our Squadron. What specs would you recommend for a PC or what laptops would you recommend, including what VR headset would you recommend for all of this. We are looking to buy a full new “Set.”
There’s an “official” set up available through chill blast however it will involve you selling every optional organ you have avaliable in your body to fund due it being massively over priced…
Could use this as a gauge and self build?
Try having a chat to your Wing Aviation Officer. They cover flight sims too so will have some good ideas and links!
Depending on your squadron budget, you’ll need a minimum of 6 cores, maybe an RTX3070 or above and I recommend the Oculus Rift S
If theyre willing to invest some good money into it get:
Ryzen 9 3700X
32GB DDR4 Ram
and get the rift S
Also think about what you are trying to get out of it… If its for principles of flight training etc VR may not be the best route as it can be a huge interference between student and instructor
And others people’s organs too looking at that price!
As someone who was once part of a squadron who invested in a six PCs capable of using flight simulator… We went along the route of a trackIR system.
Less computing power required, no issues with cadets being disorientated, student and instructor can see the same things on a large screen. Just needed x2 extra USB 2.0 slots per machine.
We used a system, similar to trackIR, called Delanclip. Circa £40 per machine for the complete set up.
Simulator wise, we had installed on each machine;
Microsoft FSX for basic flight, using the Tutor. Great for basic theory of flight, airmanship, etc.
(used as part of Leading Cadet Training)
Digital Combat Simulator (DCS World), using the Hawk T1. (for those in the know with DCS, we’ve kept that version running). Great for introduction to Military Aircraft Systems, Operational Flying, Air Power, etc.
(Used for Senior & Master).
If you can, I’d also recommend a programme called Tacview. Even the basic free version, allows for a flight replay, where you can display everyone’s aircraft, instruments, etc. We run it on a server PC, connected to a TV, where it can be viewed by the whole class as a debrief.
Feel free to drop me a PM if anyone would like more information, or even a demo of those 3 programmes over teams (as I’m a geek and have them at home!)
Make sure you speak to your WAvnO/RAvnO as there are syllabus changes under discussion which might affect what you need to buy.
The Chillblast PCs are excellent, and not overpriced at all in my experience. But no doubt there are ‘experts’ in here who will say otherwise.
The problem as I see it is if any new syllabus prevents continued use of current Sqn flight sims.
It’s one thing if a Sqn has an old pc with a dodgy copy of some random military flight sim.
Quite another if they have invested 5k+ on bespoke simulator equipment etc.
I can think of at least 4 sqns in my wing who have excellent sim capability and instructors who would be straight out of action if an arbitrary sim syllabus is produced.
My thoughts would be to create a basic framework or syllabus which Sqns could follow on any sim type equipment to achieve an end standard of knowledge.
Eg by after 10 sessions a cadet knows about…
Use of flaps
Straight and level flying
Ok so some equipment might not have the ability to provide maximum realism.
But as long as the knowledge is given that’s what should be taken as important.
Equipment specification should be no more than.
A computer capable of running suitable flight sim software.
Independant yoke or control column.
Independant Rudder pedals.
If a Sqn has really only got a keyboard and mouse for sim, well clearly that’s not helpful for the cadets.
But I very much doubt there are many if any of those out there.
What this doesnt do is force the Sqns with big kit to change everything. Or worse be stopped, for no good reason.
I would hold off buying anything for now.
Aside from possible changes from HQAC mentioned above, the new Microsoft Flight Sim is due to come out on consoles (already out for the PC). It will need a powerful internet connection but it is a step change from the old FSX or even X-Plane.
Yes the graphics look pretty, but is the physics engine really any better?
And, is there really any benefit for training cadets of MS FS 2020 over FSX, FS2004 or XPlane?
Primarily that it will run on a console (if Microsoft holds good its promise). That could be far more affordable than even a mid spec gaming PC. I don’t think any of the other flight sims run on Xbox or PS4/5.
I got my pilots licence and bought my aircraft at a fraction of that cost!!
how an earth can that price be justified for domestic use when real flying can be achieved at 10% of that cost!
You got a licence and bought an aircraft for a fraction of £5k…
Even doing one or other is unlikely.
Unless it’s a paper airplane or a drone operators licence…
I got a licence and bought an aircraft at a fraction of the cost of the flight sim (~£10k)
i got my licence for less than 10% of the cost of the flight sim.
it is not unlikely, I have 170+ hours P1
my pilots cost me ~£3300 and a share (50%) in an aircraft £3000, which i later bought outright when the syndicate member chose to upgrade.
So in my experience both are very easily achievable under £5k each
I don’t profess to being an expert in computers, I’m more of a flight simulator user.
But, we equipped our squadron with 6 sim PCs with large monitors and X52 joysticks, 1 Flight sim server PC, one large TV, all funded through grants and fundraising for £6k!
They are perfect for what we use, future proof for at least 5 years… And you can still use them for doing Ultilearn.
I’ll admit, I benefitted from having IT specialists on squadron at the time who built them.
It’s often considerably cheaper building a PC yourself too.
Have a good look around online, even if you don’t have the capabilities for someone to put it together for you. Having looked at the chillblast offering in a few minutes I found a supplier I used in the past for components, Scan, based near Manchester do a comparable spec machine but with larger SSD and liquid cooling built for a little over 2k less, I would think you would easily get a decent monitor, VR headset and joystick and still have a substantial saving.