• Review: Alabeo - C177 Cardinal

    C177 Cardinal

    Publisher: Alabeo

    Review Author:
    Bill Otten

    Suggested Price:

    Buy Here

    For some time I've been looking forward to an opportunity to review an aircraft from Alabeo. I'd read many reviews, looked at the videos online, and was intrigued by what I'd read. When the chance to review the C177 came along, I welcomed it. The past few reviews I had done were either flying big commercial jets, or high performance general aviation turboprops...it was time to get back to some low and slow, hands-on type of flying.

    Alabeo C177 Cardinal

    The Alabeo - C177 Cardinal is available from the FS Pilot Shop as an Instant Download or Instant Download + Disc Backup. I chose the 259 MB Instant Download or the "Instant Gratification" method, because I wanted to install the plane and get flying right away. In a few minutes, I had the zipped file from the FS Pilot Shop, and was ready to extract and install. Installation was a breeze, with no problems encountered. An executable file inside the zip was extracted, clicked on the application executable file and installation into my FSX folder went seemlessly. A quick check with File Manager and it was indeed in the aircraft folder.

    The install contains eight different liveries, several with US call signs, and several European. I counted six liveries in the fixed gear version, including one plain white version which would serve well for the painters out there. There were four retractable gear paints, again one was a plain white version for repainting. As I typically do, once a plane is installed, I do the tarmac walk-around to evaluate the visual aspects of the model. This one is nicely done, all the rivets, lighting effects, glare, windshield scratches, exhaust stains, etc. are there...which makes for a realistic presentation. I don't go to the extremes with rivet counting but everything looked as if it were rendered from actual photographs or blueprints of the real plane.

    The description from Alabeo on the FS Pilot Shop mentions the following:

    • Two Cardinal II models:
      • C177B (fixed gear)
      • C177RG (retractable gear)
    • Eight different HD liveries
    • Alabeo GNS530
    • Reality XP GNS530 integration
    • Superb material shines and reflections
    • Volumetric side view prop effect
    • Gauge reflections
    • Window scratches and blade shines
    • High quality 3D model and textures
    • Two blank textures for creating your own designs
    • Realistic behavior

    I would concur with the statements above. The material shines and reflections are just as described, as well as the window scratches, tint, and blade shine reflections. All the radio antennas, pitot tubes, etc. are rendered nicely as well.

    Alabeo C177 Cardinal

    After the initial walk-around it was time to check out the interior features and then get this bird flying. The interior panel is very well done, although I might have wished for at least a variation in panel configuration or two. Perhaps a different radio stack setup or a panel with some variability in wear & tear from use. As it was, the panels were all pretty clean with only some indicated wear on the propeller rpm and throttle knobs, and some wear on the pedals. One would think if those items had wear patterns, that the remainder of the panel might see a bit more as well. I'd have liked to have seen some differences in wear on the yokes, perhaps a few different items tossed about the cabin such as charts, flight bag, or a set of headphones that was different amongst the different liveries just to vary things up a bit. The gauges were about as good as I've ever seen though, the reflections on the glass covering the gauges were very realistic and apparent. The Garmin GNS 530 was a nice part of the radio stack, and easily readable and capable of being used without having to pop it up as a separate window, although that is possible. Interior paints and fabrics were color matched to exterior trim colors.

    Alabeo C177 Cardinal

    1 Comment
    1. bravesfn's Avatar
      bravesfn -
      Is there any chance this plane, C 177, will ever be available for X-Plane?
      As a former C 177 owner I would be your first customer.
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