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P3D Complete System Build


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Hello all!


This is my first post, though I have been a long term lurker. I finally decided to join and seek advice from you knowledgable folk as I begin my flight sim adventure in earnest.


I am a flight student doing virtually all of my PPL hours in the flight school’s Cessna 172, but I plan on purchasing a used Beechcraft 36 shortly after completing my PPL and complex/hi-perf certs. I also plan on immediately moving on to my instrument rating so I am hoping that by building a reasonably good simulator in my home I can build proficiency more rapidly as well as practice approaches/landings, etc on the various airports I will be flying into once my license is acquired. I also am keen on getting practice with cockpit workflows incorporating ForeFlight as well as the various avionics I may encounter in my actual flights. In short, I wish to use this as a true simulator with my own personal entertainment a secondary concern.


Budget is not much of an issue, except when it is. Wife Acceptance Factor is an issue however, which is why I’m not doing the full blown home simulator (e.g., OntheGLideslope.net.) The complete immersion that his simulator provides is really attractive, but I do not have the space to build such a simulator. I would like to be prepared for VR flying once it is ready for prime time.


I am not interested in gaming, though my 6 kids will likely use the rig sans flight controls for their own entertainment purposes, nor am I likely to ever fire up an aircraft on the simulator which I am unlikely to fly in the Real World (RW). With that in mind, here is my plan:


Already Purchased, not yet built



  • Intel Core i7-6700K 8M Skylake Quad-Core 4.0 GHz
  • GIGABYTE G1 Gaming GA-Z170X-Gaming G1 Motherboard
  • GIGABYTE GeForce GTX 1080 G1 Gaming GV-N1080G1 GAMING-8GD Video Card
  • Noctua NH-D15 SSO2 D-Type Premium CPU Cooler
  • G.SKILL TridentZ Series 32GB (2 x 16GB) 288-Pin DDR4 SDRAM DDR4 3400
  • SAMSUNG 850 EVO 2.5" 1TB SATA III 3-D Vertical Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
  • CORSAIR RMx Series RM750X 750W Power Supply
  • Fractal Design Define R5 Blackout Silent ATX Mid Tower Computer Case


  • LG 34UM88C-P 34" FreeSync IPS LED Monitor 3440 x 1440 WQHD 21:9 UltraWide Monitor
  • Logitech Performance Combo MX800 Illuminated Wireless Keyboard/Mouse
  • Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 THX Certified Computer Speaker System

iPad Pro 9.7”



  • Microsoft Windows 10 Home
  • ForeFlight

Flight Sim Hardware

  • Saitek Pro Flight Cessna Yoke System
  • Saitek Pro Flight Three-Lever Throttle
  • Saitek Pro Flight Cessna Trim Wheel
  • Saitek Pro Flight Rudder Pedals


So that is my starting point. Here is where I am going I think…


Planned/Proposed System Purchases



  • Saitek Pro Flight Radio Panel
  • Saitek Pro Flight Switch Panel
  • Saitek Pro Flight Throttle Prop Mixture System
  • Wheel Stand Pro Stand for Saitek Pro Flight System (So I can mount everything and put it away when not in use)


Flight Sim Software

  • Prepar3d v3.x
  • FreeMeshX
  • Active Sky 2016 (P3D)
  • REX 4 Texture Direct HD with Soft Clouds
  • FSX HD Moon Texture V3.0
  • Aimé Leclercq’s FSX Road Textures
  • ORBX: FTX Global: Base
  • ORBX: FTX Global: Vector
  • ORBX: FTX Global: OpenLC North America
  • A2A Cessna 172 Professional


I would very much appreciate any guidance, comments or suggestions.


Thank you for your help!

Not all who wander are lost.
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Looks like you have it very well thought out. A couple of suggestions - I'd get ASCA to go with AS16 rather than REX, simply because the dynamic weather injection is superb. A much better touch of realism.


I would skip the Orbx stuff and go with GEp3D and UTX - they are easier on system resources and comparable in visuals. Your processor at 4.0 is OK but to do what I think you want, you will really need to clock it up in the 4.5 - 4.7 range. I don't think the Noctua will handle that - it MIGHT - I had a Noctua on a 980x that was running at 4.7 and it kept that cool but I had a lot of other case fans, etc. So you might want to consider one of the liquid cooling solutions like Corsair.



P3D Rig

I7 7700K @ 5.0ghz Asus Maximus X270 16G G.Skill 3600 15-15-15-18 2T EVGARTX2080ti Corsair 1000W PSU 1TB Samsung SSD for P3D - 2 - 256G OCZ Vector SSD - HAF X - Corsiar H100i V2 Liquid Cooler W10 64 Pro.

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Thanks Vic, that is EXACTLY the kind of feedback I was hoping for!


I thought I *might* need to beef up the cooling if I OC, but I thought I'd wait and see how the beefy fans in the case handle

Not all who wander are lost.
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I agree with Vic on both points. You're probably needing 4.5Ghz to really do well at what what you want. And speed equals heat. If I were doing a scratch build, I'd go ahead and liquid cool from day one.


Why double your efforts? You'll probably need it soon anyway. If not right now, certainly when the gear and software creep kicks in. Believe me, whether it be you or your kids both gear and software creep will occur!


"A step in time saves nine." :cool::cool:

Being an old chopper guy I usually fly low and slow.
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Wow, I'm in Florida MrUnSavory and just ordered from another builder, wish I had seen this post on Jetlinesystems to investigate.


Folks, I'm going to be running P3d and possibly war thunder or DCS. I have an Oculus Rift and a Predator 34" LCD for screen. Two questions:


1. The system is Core i7 67000 4.0ghz with: MSI Z170A M9 ACK board, 8g NVIDIA GTX 1080, 16g DDR4 2666mhz ram.


-- Should I be over clocking this ??


2. Any knowledge of RAIM 0 configuring? The builder does it, I saw it messes with flight sim stability, I have no idea?


Thanks all!

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Guess I'm on the contra camp as i would recommend for compatibility purposes and the closest accuracy you go with the FTX Global, Vector and Open LC NA route.


There is no substitute when you factor in the latest updates for each - Vector 1.45 resolves the fps issues that afflicted the earlier versions. Using all three ensures that if and when you decide to add any USA Regional sceneries (as you surely will... juts go look at the videos then compare it with what you are seeing out the window IRL) then you have the package that ensures cross-compatibility inside & outside the regional scenery modules.


One exception to this rule is that UTX does offer better looking roads and it IS possible to blend UTX USA with FTX Global. This will need more research.

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Since you said $$ is not really an issue I would move away from Saitek and take it to the next level of quality hardware. Don't get me wrong, I like Saitek. I have all all their gear except for the individual instruments. But I fly as a hobby/entertainment. But if I was going for a PPL I would want more of a professional feel, weight and smoothness by taking it to the next level.


I would also consider photoreal scenery for VFR flying.

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+1 photoreal for VFR flying! Hopefully, SimwestDesign finishes their photoreal project soon!

Intel i-9 13900KF @ 6.0 Ghz Cpu, MSI RTX 4090 Suprim Liquid X 24GB Videocard, MSI MAG CORELIQUID C360 Water Cooler, MSI Z790 A-PRO WIFI Motherboard, MSI MPG A1000G 1000W Power Supply, G.SKILL 48Gb Ram @76000 MHz DDR5 Ram, MSI SPATIUM M480 PCIe 4.0 NVMe M.2 2TB Drive, Windows 11 Pro Ghost Spectre x64


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Thanks for the ongoing feedback!


I'm still leaning toward the ORBX solution suite though...


Just remember, none of this need be installed Day One. You just need to be aware of your options.


Load up your default sim at you home field. Compare it with out the window... you can soon see. It might be all you need if it's close-to-life (although I suspect it won't be).


If that field is included in the Regional addons coverage area then you only need the Region and FTX Global to start with - the Regions include textures, vector AND mesh and will give a firm base for local flying.


you can add Open LC NA and Vector for the rest of the continental USA afterwards. If not, then start with those two and go from there.


What is the home field you are using for RW training?

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  • 4 months later...

I have a similar system

Prepar3D, X-Plane 10 & 11

Saitek Pro Flight Cessna Yoke System

Saitek Pro Flight Three-Lever Throttle "two of these

Saitek Pro Flight Cessna Trim Wheel

Saitek Pro Flight Rudder Pedals

Saitek Trim Wheel

Logitech 3D Pro Joystick


The problem I am having is configuring throttle quadrants to twin engine.

I would also like to configure the other throttle and the trim like an ag plane.


I am also having trouble using the downloaded BlueSky Scenery

I don't know how to apply them, or whatever the terminology is.


If you can refer me to some tutorials, I would be very grateful.

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