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I'm looking at picking up a good Simulator program for my laptop so that I can practise some IFR stuff as I plan on doing the rating in the near future. I've heard great things about Microsoft Flight Sim, but I just switched to a Mac and it doesn't seem like its an option. Has anyone played with any of the X-Plane versions for Mac? I've heard they're not as good, but reading some reviews on the new ones they sound not too bad. Most reviews online are from gamers and not people using them as training aids. Is there anything else out there?

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One option is to run Windows on your Mac via Boot Camp - you can boot up your machine as either a Mac or a fully native Windows machine. The downsides here are that you'd need to buy (or beg/borrow) a copy of whatever Windows OS you want to use to run Flight Sim, and the second operating system would take up some space on your hard drive.

 

I did this several years ago when flying was still a dream, and it worked great. Granted, I already had a copy of Windows XP in the house, so it was an easy decision for me. Fast forward a few years, a divorce, a career change and a couple house moves, and I've managed to misplace my Flight Sim disc (and lost custody of the XP discs laugh.gif). On the upside, I now have the CPL-H and a couple hundred hours of real flying. Kinda wish I still had Flight Sim, as it'd be good instrument practice if/when I diecide to try my hand at an IFR rating.

 

Don't know much about X-plane, but when I was researching a few years back the consensus was that Microsoft's Flight Sim was the closest one could get to the real thing.

 

 

Good luck,

 

Darren

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I used X-plane version 8 when I did my IFR training and found it to be a great tool.

The latest version 9 looks even better.

 

I think you will find X-plane to be a great tool.

Since I've never used MS Flight Sim I can't offer a comparison.

 

If you do buy X-plane I can show you a way to avoid having the DVD inserted for play (Make IMG file and mount)

 

Good luck.

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One option is to run Windows on your Mac via Boot Camp - you can boot up your machine as either a Mac or a fully native Windows machine. The downsides here are that you'd need to buy (or beg/borrow) a copy of whatever Windows OS you want to use to run Flight Sim, and the second operating system would take up some space on your hard drive.

 

I did this several years ago when flying was still a dream, and it worked great. Granted, I already had a copy of Windows XP in the house, so it was an easy decision for me. Fast forward a few years, a divorce, a career change and a couple house moves, and I've managed to misplace my Flight Sim disc (and lost custody of the XP discs laugh.gif). On the upside, I now have the CPL-H and a couple hundred hours of real flying. Kinda wish I still had Flight Sim, as it'd be good instrument practice if/when I diecide to try my hand at an IFR rating.

 

Don't know much about X-plane, but when I was researching a few years back the consensus was that Microsoft's Flight Sim was the closest one could get to the real thing.

 

 

Good luck,

 

Darren

 

You don't need boot camp to run Windows on a Mac anymore, it's called Parallels and it's about $85. It lets you run windows as an application with out having to reboot. I use it to run windows on my Mac and I go from one to the other seamlessly. U still need a copy of Windows however.

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You don't need boot camp to run Windows on a Mac anymore, it's called Parallels and it's about $85. It lets you run windows as an application with out having to reboot. I use it to run windows on my Mac and I go from one to the other seamlessly. U still need a copy of Windows however.

 

 

I haven't used Parallels myself, but a good friend (and heavy-duty Mac-o-phile) uses Parallels, and his take was that it was good for less intensive apps and tasks, and not so hot for memory/processor intensive stuff - for that he used Windows natively through Boot Camp and a re-boot. To be fair, that conversation was several years ago, and I'm sure things are different now.

 

Can the newest version of Parallels handle the processor and memory needs of a flight sim?

 

 

Cheers,

 

Darren

 

 

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I haven't used Parallels myself, but a good friend (and heavy-duty Mac-o-phile) uses Parallels, and his take was that it was good for less intensive apps and tasks, and not so hot for memory/processor intensive stuff - for that he used Windows natively through Boot Camp and a re-boot. To be fair, that conversation was several years ago, and I'm sure things are different now.

 

Can the newest version of Parallels handle the processor and memory needs of a flight sim?

 

 

Cheers,

 

Darren

 

 

Windows doesn't have the processor and memory needs to run Flight Sim (especially X)lol. In case you all didn't know, Microsoft has shut down their flight sim division so X will be the last version made. I have a copy of Flight Sim 2.0 for an IBM PC XT. It comes on a 5 1/4" floppy disc. :up:

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sorry, i still cringe when i hear pilots using a game to hone their skills.

 

i know the simulators are very realistic, but how would you feel downtown toronto or vancouver knowing the guy in a honda civic beside you at the light trained for driving using Need For Speed???

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Buy Xplane 9. I have both a PC and Mac and both sims, Xplane is alot more smooth and everything is free. There is alot of difference between how helicopters fly between the 2 and the designer of Xpane test runs helicopters flight characteristics through a real pilot. Personally I use Xplane for instrument practice, and have gone as far to instal "xsquawkbox" which allows you to connect to an extremely in depth live online ATC which operates around the world. Pretty cool to test your instrument skills while talking to a live ATC and other aircraft on the same approach.

 

Obviously it is not the real thing nor should it be thought of as such. Still and excellent training aid for the instrument side of things.

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X-plane and microsoft flight sim are both quality simulators. I didn't find it helped for actual precision flying. But it is the best way to learn the IFR procedures. The actual flying part of IFR is pretty easy as we can all hold altitudes and turns, but it's knowing how to intercept radials or how to enter the hold that are the biggest learning curves.

 

I did mine in a C172 sim and did about an hour a day. Then at night I would practice the same routing on my laptop and this is where things would really stick as I could just concentrate on the navigation stuff and not worry about flying. I didn't like using a joystick as it didn't feel very real and was hard on the wrists, so I just used what looks like a playstation controller as I could then just fly with my thumb. Worked really well. Don't bother trying to fly a helicopter on the sim's as it's too much work, just pick a plane with the nav aids you need and fly.

 

The other thing I would really recommend is the gps download. On garmin's site you can download the GNS 430/530 simulator for free. Although you would think the gps is the easiest thing to learn, you load all your approach's through this and sometimes it doesn't do what you think it should. So the more time you can spend on this the better, as some of the flight test failures I have heard of are usually finger troubles with the GPS.

If you go to http://www.reality-xp.com/flightsim/index.html you can download the GNS 430/530 right onto X-plane/flight sim for $50. This makes life so much easier as you can now load all your approach's right into your simulator on the gps, just the same as if you were on your flight test. This allows you to learn everything from home so when your actually in the aircraft you just need to fly.

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