x+s+r // lghi chios + klax (sfd)

xsr chiosLAX hdr

Two rather interesting new scenery files out today, and one of those is a new Los Angeles International by none other than Mr X himself. The other, a small Greek airport in the eastern Aegean, couldn’t be more different, so lets start with that one.

LGHI Hdr

Descend2View is a new developer, and this is their first payware scenery file for Xp. This can (often) lead to issues like: I opened the file with all rendering options at Max settings and my iMac Pro ground to a stuttering halt, so I checked the scenery load and it was over 18Gb! Mind you, this is the first time this has happened on this computer (it has 16Gb on the video card, for heaven’s sake), and I had just been open at the new KLAX (with no issues, but more on that later). So, after resetting textures (down a notch) and knocking reflections out completely I reopened and framerates were now quite good. Still, the scenery load was close to 8Gb, so if you’re flying with anything less than 8Gb onboard you’ll have to fiddle with settings to find a happy compromise.

The immediate question then becomes: will you even want to?

LGHI Chios might well be considered off the beaten path for most users in Xp, so let’s take a closer look:

LGHI Chios GE 1

The island of Chios is located in the eastern Aegean and, as it happens, it’s located quite near Turkey. Like…4 miles from Turkey…

LGHI Chios GE 2

The airport is located on the eastern shore, and yes, that’s Turkey you see off to the east in the image above.

LGHI GE 3

The airport is, as you can see in the satellite overhead above, quite small, and the list of airlines and destinations is equally abbreviated – with most destinations in Greece. The island has a history that reaches back to antiquity, and tourism is a principle feature of the economy.

Descend2View’s scenery falls into the category of hyper-detailed airport file, with special attention paid to both the airport itself and the immediate environs, including local population centers (and ports). Looking at the airport closely in Google Earth it appears that the file is accurate down to the placement of shrubbery, and the feel on downwind or final is utterly convincing…

LGHI comp

Pay attention to the foliage and grasses used here, as this is a work of art. It also accounts for the heavy scenery load.

Is it worth it?

I think so, at least assuming you have the horsepower to run the file, and if you do you might find this island immersive – and enchanting. If you’re already flying around Greece this will be a no-brainer; it will be an easy Must Have file for you. If not, consider that tdg has a great Athens and don’t forget FlyTampa’s Corfu. With just those two files onboard you’ll have a great regional RJ network in place, and you’ll have three really great airports on-hand to use. Add a few more of tdg’s files in the region and you’ll have a compact regional network for RJs, turboprops, light-heavies, and GA aircraft – and in some of the most interesting scenery you’ll run across in Xp.

So, anyway, consider this new file to be right up there with the very best we have in X-plane.

If you’re like a lot of us and you like to support new developers who produce excellent work, please think about adding this one to your already bulging custom scenery folder. You won’t regret it, unless your 8 year old PC has a 1Gb video card…

At 26USD, the file is reasonably priced, and it’s available at the THRESHOLD STORE.

//

lax hdr

There were already two large, well detailed KLAX files on the shelves, so like a lot of you I just kind of shook my head when Mr X announced his first new file after his KABQ debut would be yet another Los Angeles International.

Really?

Why?

I’ve been using the FunnerFlight KLAX (with 750 animations!), so let’s look at a side-by-side comparison and maybe you’ll see why Mr X is considered one of the best (if not The Best) scenery developer in X-plane:

KLAX 1

It always come down to detail, and Mr X tends to beat everyone else hands down when it comes to fitting out an airport with relevant detail. Pavement, ground clutter, parking lots, rooftop detail…you name it, he does it better…

KLAX comp 2

So, the most relevant questions become:

  1. If I already have a good LAX, is Mr Xs so good I should switch?
  2. If I don’t have any version of KLAX, which one is better?

The answer to the first is easy. No, not really. The only compelling reason I can see to make the switch is that Mr X’s (excuse me, Short Final Design’s) KLAX is highly optimized and you’ll likely see better frame-rates with his file vs the older FunnerFlight file.

The answer to the second is easier still. Buy the Short Final Design’s version. With extreme detail and with über good performance, this is now the file to beat.

And keep in mind: the same argument used above still applies. We need to support new developers, and Mr X is still in the new developer phase. So yeah, I now have two really nice KLAX files onboard, and so what? This file cost less than a steak at a decent restaurant, and I know I won’t regret buying another file from Mr X, while most steaks these days just don’t impress that much.

Food for thought?

No way. This new Short Final LAX is at the Org Store, for about 26 buckeroos.

Y’all have a nice week – A

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