• Review: Carenado - C90 King Air for X-Plane 11

    C90B King Air

    Publisher: Carenado

    Review Author:
    Rohan Nair

    Suggested Price:

    Buy Here

    Beechcraft. A name that has taken firm roots in the realm of aviation. Born in 1932 by the will of Walter Beech and Olive Ann Beech as the brand of the Beech Aircraft Corporation, Beechcraft went on to become a prolific American manufacturer of aircraft. Single engine light aircraft, twin-engine turboprops, business jets, and military trainers, they've made them all. The company eventually came under the umbrella of Raytheon, then later on Hawker Beechcraft until finally being acquired by Textron, an American conglomerate, as part of a bankruptcy sale. Nothing, however, has fazed Beechcraft from continuing to manufacture a myriad of aircraft. The popular piston powered twin engine Baron and the twin turboprop King Air 350 found their way into the Microsoft Flight Simulator franchise too as a pair of default aircraft.

    Carenado Beechcraft C90B

    A lineage of iconic products from Beechcraft are their King Airs: a family of utility twin engine turboprops. Production started in 1964 and continues to this day. The original King Air family has two variants: the 90 and 100 series. Later developments, known as the Super King Airs for a time, came in two characteristic T-tailed variants: the 200 and 300 series. King Airs have found a place in every corner of the globe. As a result of the efforts of Carenado, the King Air C90B now has a place in the world of X-Plane 11 too.

    The C90B is one of the smaller 90 series variants of the original King Air family. Over previous variants, the C90B features airframe improvements, four blade propellers, propellor synchrophasing, and an Electronic Flight Instrumentation System (EFIS). The C90B sports a pair of Pratt & Whitney PT6A-21 turboprop engines. A total of 456 C90Bs were manufactured until production ended in 2005. C90Bs are still in active service across the globe. They have served as passenger aircraft, cargo aircraft, flying ambulances and even served for military purposes.

    Carenado first offered the C90B for X-Plane 9 and 10 sometime in 2013. Later, on an HD series rendition was released for X-Plane 11 and that is what this review is about.

    A 328 MB download from the FS Pilot Shop that will set you back USD $34.95 is one way to get this add-on onto your system. Before you decide to do so, bear in mind that Carenado believes you'll need a 3.5 GHz i5-6600K or better, 16-24 GB of RAM and a DX12 capable graphics card with 4 GB or more of VRAM that parallels or overtakes a GTX 1070 to get the best of their product. Fear not for these aren't the minimum system requirements. They're the recommended system requirements. If your system can run X-Plane 11, you can probably run the C90 too. In theory, at least. One of the great features Carenado's C90 shares with X-Plane is that it works on any Windows OS from XP to 10, Mac OS 10.10 and above and Linux operating systems too. I did my review on a 3.6 GHz 4th generation i7 with 16 GB of RAM and a 4 GB GTX 960M running a 64 bit Windows 10 OS with X-Plane 11.11r2.

    Carenado Beechcraft C90B

    What's the usual way of dealing with a payware add-on once you have purchased and downloaded it? Unzip, run the installer and then fire up the sim. Right? That's not what you'll do with this add-on for X-Plane though. You'll have to drag and drop a folder into X-Plane 11's Aircraft directory. Do this and the Carenado C90B in six liveries shall await you in X-Plane 11. If you're a pedantic, a real aviator, or a professional textbook style flight simmer, then you know the importance of good documentation for an add-on. Head into the obviously named folder inside the C90B's aircraft directory and you folks will find what you need. Maybe. Why so? You'll learn why in a bit. For now, let's roll out the C90 from the hangar to admire its visuals.

    Carenado's C90B is visually impressive inside and outside. Crisp HD textures, clear gauges, a good number of animations and effects make this add on a treat for the eyes. There is a 3D virtual cockpit and a virtual cabin too that both come with a good number of animations. Some of animations that caught my eyes were the sun shades in the cockpit, the adjustable overhead lights in the cockpit and the cabin, the pens in the pen holders on the glareshield that rattle around when starting the engines, polarizable windows in the cabin, and engine cowlings that can be opened to reveal a detailed representation of the internal engine components.

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