• Review: vFlyte Air - Piper Twin Comanche for X-Plane 11

    PA30 Twin Comanche

    Publisher: vFlyteAir

    Review Author:
    Stuart McGregor

    Suggested Price:

    Buy Here

    vFlyteAir Piper PA30 Twin Comanche     vFlyteAir Piper PA30 Twin Comanche     vFlyteAir Piper PA30 Twin Comanche

    The Aircraft

    The aircraft under review is vFlyteAir's Piper PA30 Twin Comanche. According to the developer, the model in question has recently gone through an extensive upgrade (v1.2, July 2017) to ensure it can utilise the latest and greatest features now available in X-Plane 11.

    The Comanche itself, is a twin engine, single wing light aircraft with retractable landing gear, and has been around since the 1960s, with more than 2000 aircraft sales being reported across all variants. According to the literature from the developer, the variant on offer here, was actually modelled on a 1964 Piper PA-30, and is their first venture into the twin engine market.

    vFlyteAir Piper PA30 Twin Comanche     vFlyteAir Piper PA30 Twin Comanche     vFlyteAir Piper PA30 Twin Comanche

    Initial Thoughts

    To be perfectly honest, this class of aircraft is one of my favorites, and being a big fan of the Baron B58 and the likes, was delighted to be offered the opportunity to take vFltyeAir's recent upgrade for a spin in X-Plane 11. I should mention that during this review I was using X-Plane 11.05 throughout.

    I purchased my copy over at FSPilotshop.com and in my opinion, is reasonably priced at $29.95. It is a large download at 635 MB, so be prepared for a wait if your internet connection is taking a sabbatical, however from what I experienced, the wait is well worth it.

    Installation is just drop and drag, and there is a very nice manual provided in the 'Documents' folder of the download. Once purchased, I highly recommend you take a look at this, as it is one of the best manuals I have seen for an X-Plane aircraft. The quality and detail provided is excellent, which for me, shows you are dealing with a developer who is intent on providing a quality product. It is the little things like this that make all the difference, and the manual is stuffed full of all sorts of excellent information. It includes a description of the aircraft they based their model on, detailed photos of the layout and features, advice on hardware requirements and expected frame rates, menu options, technical data, and lots more!

    vFlyteAir Piper PA30 Twin Comanche     vFlyteAir Piper PA30 Twin Comanche     vFlyteAir Piper PA30 Twin Comanche

    On The Ground

    So, once you are loaded and all ready to go, the first thing I always like to do, is take a look around the aircraft to see what I can find. The model is well proportioned from real life photos I have seen, and it really is a thing of beauty. The exterior details are fabulous, and it is almost difficult to put into words what I mean, as there is so much detail - screw head and rivet details, dirty paint and chip marks, landing gear details, radio antennas, X-Plane 11's fuselage shine... I still can't believe the amazing level of realism the average armchair pilot has at their disposal, and modern add-ons such as the Comanche blow me away every time I fire up the sim! Another nice feature you can observe from the outside of the cabin is the synchronisation of the flight controls (yoke and throttle) with the pilots arms, where both move hand in hand so to speak, and I just love this sort of realism.

    The stock model comes with a number of different liveries, 12 to be exact, and these cover countries such as the UK, USA, Germany, Canada, Italy, Sweden, Spain (military) and Australia. If you wish to create your own livery, over at the vFlyteAir web site there is a free paint kit for download.

    vFlyteAir Piper PA30 Twin Comanche     vFlyteAir Piper PA30 Twin Comanche     vFlyteAir Piper PA30 Twin Comanche

    Moving inside the cabin, you will find lots of further details in a well modelled interior. Most of the switches, levers, fuse buttons, door catches, latches and windows are animated, and the well-used feel of the cabin is fantastic. The vFlyteAir team really have done their homework here, and I can clearly see that a large number of hours have gone into the Comanche to get it to the standard it currently is. From what I could tell during my short test, most of the switches and radio features of my Saitek panels (switch, 2 x radio, multi) worked with no need for any additional scripts, although the flaps and autopilot features were not fully compatible as supplied. In saying that, I am sure this can be fixed with an appropriate script and a bit of data ref manipulation, and to be honest, it didn't really detract from my flying experience that much.

    1 Comment
    1. DominicS's Avatar
      DominicS -
      Many thanks for the review Stuart. This certainly does look like a must have aircraft! X-Plane just keeps getting better and better
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