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Gift Guide: Just Flight - 146 Professional P3D

BAe 146 Professional P3D

Publisher: Just Flight

Review Author:
Richard Nurse

Suggested Price:


Is Just Flight now officially another developer of study levelcommercial aircraft?

I have had a look at a couple of JustFlight's general aviation products, and I have seen that theseaircraft have been expertly developed, as they include a high degreeof modelling in the external model, cockpit features, flight dynamics,and systems (they are great airplanes). I am therefore naturallycurious about what sort of quality will be available in the BAe146. Just Flight has developed this BAe 146 following comprehensive,hands-on research with a real-life aircraft, G-JEAO, which retiredfrom service with British European Airways in 2000, and the CC.Mk2 andC.Mk3 aircraft of Royal Air Force, 32 (The Royal) Squadron. This issaid to be a highly detailed simulation and includes eight variants ofthe 146 with unique flight dynamics for each variant. Other featuresinclude custom effects from condensation and contrails to realisticexterior lighting, stunningly detailed exterior models featuring 4Ktextures for incredible clarity, and the latest Physical BasedRendering (PBR) techniques. The cockpit is also fantastically detailedwith hundreds of functional switches, knobs and controls in theCaptain and First Officer positions.


Another highlighted feature of this add-on is the soundenvironment. The aircraft is brought to life with immersive dynamiclighting and 3D sounds, and over 450 flight deck sound effectsrecorded from RAF CC.Mk2 ZE701. There is also studio quality LycomingALF-502 engine noise recorded from RAF C.Mk3 ZE708, and accurate 3Dplacement of sounds. There is even a distinctive flapretraction/extension airflow 'howling' sound.

Just Flight has taken no shortcuts in advertising this 146 as ahigh quality and well-developed add-on but notice that this airplanecosts $84.99 USD. This price puts the 146 in direct competition withPMDG's Boeing 737 NGX, which was previously priced at $69.99 USD,PMDG's NGXu which is now priced at $99.99 USD, and Majestic Software'sQ400, priced at $60 USD. These competitor airplanes are impeccable,and do not hamper the simmer in any way as he attempts to replicatereal-world procedures of flying these airplanes in a simulatorenvironment. So, my question must be: is this 146 as study level andeasy-to-use an aircraft as the Majestic Q400 and PMDG Boeing 737? Thisis the focus of my review.


The 146 is made exclusively for P3D, so FSX installation optionsare not available. After selecting your Prepar3D version, you can thendetermine whether you would like to install the 146 in the simdirectory, or in the Add-ons folder. Once that is decided, theinstallation should proceed without a problem.





External Model

Just Flight developers have used extensive imagery of the realaircraft to produce the external model of the 146. As a user of thisairplane, I am very impressed with the 4K textures, the Physical BasedRendering (PBR) and the general high attention to detail, especiallyin the cabin, and virtually all other elements of the externalmodel. In fact, the model indeed matches the quality of its PMDG andMajestic Software counterparts and is study level.











The cockpit of this aircraft deserves some recognition, as allbuttons, switches and knobs are operable, and the 3D modelling ofevery component is fantastic. There is one aspect of the 146 cockpitthat distinguishes it from PMDG aircraft, and that is the UHD 4Kresolution images used to produce all surfaces. When looking at thecockpit surfaces, you can tell that they are high resolution images ofthe real aircraft cockpit. PMDG and Majestic Software cockpitenvironments tend to look like they were fabricated using somesoftware tool. This is definitely a highlight for the Just Flight146.


I can look at this cockpit all day. Fantastic quality; well doneJust Flight!


Every button and switch you see in these images are operable. Theonly inoperable switches are the circuit breakers and a miscellaneousoxygen panel near to the door.






This speed card in the image below shows your V speeds based on theweight of your aircraft. No programming is necessary as it adjustsautomatically as the aircraft's weight changes. I love that speedcard. It's just one of the features that makes this aircraft so easyto use and learn.


Fantastic Cockpit Sound Environment

Equally impressive is the cockpit sound environment. When youoperate the Just Flight 146, you hear sounds coming from every switch,button, and knob, very impressive. The hydraulic systems have uniquesounds, and you can even hear the air conditioning system. You canhear the flaps operating, and the First Officer callouts are verysupportive. Just like the modeling, the sound environment is anothergreat feature of this airplane!

Systems Modelling

Since this aircraft is a direct competitor with the PMDG andMajestic Software add-ons, you can be assured that all the systemswork as intended, with a high degree of detail and modelling. Yes,this is indeed a study level aircraft. However, I will now mentionsome of the systems that don't quite operate to my satisfaction.

The FMS is the worst aspect of this aircraft, as it is not verywell developed. You cannot save more than one flight plan, so you haveto manually input the flight plan for every flight. There is also noApproach section in this FMS, so you cannot define RNAV or ILSapproaches, only Arrivals and Departures, so you have to do all theapproaches on your own using the approach plate. These issues, plus afew more, show that Just Flight did not give as much care to their FMSwhen compared to Majestic Software or PMDG.



There is no Approach selection option, so you have to executeapproaches on your own.


The FMS of the 146 works though, and you can use it for yourroutes, but just do not expect VNAV, approaches, VNAV guidance fromcruise altitude, nor use of the NAV page. But it is not acceptable foran $82 USD add-on aircraft. Like many others, I need this FMS to befully modelled and tuition worthy.

The Cockpit State Saving System Is Not Very Good

With this 146, you can expect to have to perform your flight fullyevery time without closing the system because saving the flight andreloading it causes the cockpit to return to the default aircraftstate. While the overhead panel remains as you left it, theinstruments of the main panel return to a cold and dark state. As aresult, reloading flights requires significant work. In addition, theFMS completely turns off, so you have to reinput your route. Good luckknowing exactly which waypoint you reached because you don't reallyhave a map display!

Lycoming ALF-502 Engine Sound


The engine sound deserves a great deal of credit, as it is veryentertaining and pleasing to listen to. Studio quality LycomingALF-502 engine noise was recorded from the real aircraft, RAF C.Mk3ZE708. It brings alive the feeling of being in the cockpit environmentof the real 146 and is very representative of a study-levelsimulation. The external engine sounds are blaring and fun to listento, especially when the engines are spooled up! The sound environmentas a whole is definitely worth the price of this airplane.

External Sim Features

All high-quality commercial jets must include a detailed real-worldoperation manual, and a configuration management tool. This 146 comesequipped with a config tool, a load manager, and a cockpit textureswitcher. Let's have a look.

The Cockpit Texture Switcher

The cockpit texture switcher converts all textures of the cockpitto 2048 VHD textures for users with low-end systems. I believe thatthese textures are for the external model as well. These textures tome are not very impressive to look at, and the text around the cockpitbecomes blurred, so I leave them at UHD and turn down my P3D textureresolution and world settings if I have to. But, let me mention that Idon't have to do it much, as this aircraft is not VRAM resourcehungry! It runs really well, with high frame rates.


The Config Tool

This config tool gives the simmer additional options for theaircraft. As you can see, this aircraft features service-basedfailures, and I have detected one such failure. It was the hydraulicsystem which stopped working and prevented me using the hydraulicsystem brakes. You don't want to disable the sounds as they are afantastic feature of this airplane.


Load Manager

Many great aircraft include a fuel and payload manager, and I amalways excited to see how developers use their creativity in which tomake them easy to use and functional. The Distance Calculator at thebottom calculates trip fuel for you, but you don't have to use this,as SimBrief is great at fuel planning for your flight.


The Aircraft Manual

The aircraft manual is not an official document from the aircraftmanufacturer, but a document developed by Just Flight. It does howevercontain detailed descriptions that I believe were sourced from theofficial manual of the aircraft. There is also a great tutorial, whichI personally used for my first flight. There is also a great NormalProcedures section that describes how all of the systems are supposedto be used for each stage of flight. Altogether I would say that it isa good quality manual, and it teaches the simmer how to use theairplane properly. The manual lacks Non-Normal and EmergencyProcedures though.

Simmer Opinion of Just Flight's BAe 146 Professional

Having taken a very close look at Just Flight's BAe 146, I canhonestly say it is a well-developed, very advanced airplane, and thatit is very representative of its price of $84.99. It competes verywell with PMDG and Majestic Software in terms of its excellent UHDtexture exterior and interior, its functionality of all instruments inthe cockpit, even the compass controls, and the very well-developedsound environment.

Is there any room for improvement? Yes, definitely with the FMS andthe cockpit state saving systems. If these were fully developed, thisaircraft would be perfect!

As it stands, this is a very good representation of the BAe 146 anda model I can highly recommend. Just Flight's BAe 146 receives 4.8out of 5.


Richard Nurse


Purchase Just Flight - 146 Professional for P3D v4/v5

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