• Review: Carenado - Fokker F50

    In said cabin, not much can be done beyond drawing the shades and moving the viewpoint around to look at different views. What is interesting, however, is that the shades drawn in the cabin visually affects the exterior model too. In this example, the front three shades were drawn in the interior, and it corresponds to the three drawn shades as seen from the exterior. It should be noted that the cabin may be rather taxing on the system, as I noted a significant frame rate drop between the cabin-less "LITE" version and the normal version with the cabin. If you face performance issues with this aircraft, perhaps switching to the cabin-less version of the aircraft will help.

    Carenado - Fokker F50

    Carenado - Fokker F50

    Beyond the looks, though, there really isn't that much to show for. Whilst the knobs and switches are modelled, the flight management is handled only by a simplistic "Universal" Flight Management System (FMS), which feels somewhat unintuitive to use. The FMS can handle simple functions such as flight planning, flying a SID/STAR, flying directly to a waypoint on your flight plan or viewing performance and fuel parameters. Judging by pictures online, the FMS captures the look and feel of the real-world FMS decently, though I don't suppose that the functions are captured fully. Nonetheless, due to my inexperience with regards to the specific systems of the F50, I cannot outline the specific differences between the real-world FMS and the one represented by Carenado.

    Carenado also touts GTN750 integration, which I am unable to test since I do not own the GTN750 add-on. If you had the add-on, there is a click-spot on the center pedestal which you can use to bring up the GTN750 panel.

    In closing, whilst the appearances of the cockpit and cabin are certainly top-notch and live up to the quality set by previous Carenado releases, the lack of in depth systems simulations may be a turn-off for serious pilots looking for an aircraft to add to their collection.

    Flight Dynamics

    My first impressions of the aircraft places it as a heavier default King Air 350, with much lower sensitivity on the elevator and slower roll rate.

    During taxiing, the aircraft performs favorably, with a tight turning radius and good acceleration, but throttle control proved somewhat challenging. When pushing the throttles forward, the torque produced increases very slowly initially. After a certain point, the torque jumps to around 35%, at which point the aircraft surges forward and accelerates quickly. Whilst I'm unsure if this is a realistic representation of the throttles on the aircraft, I found it best to allow the engines to spool up, accelerate then bring the engines back down to slightly above idle and taxi.

    Carenado - Fokker F50     Carenado - Fokker F50

    Carenado - Fokker F50     Carenado - Fokker F50

    On takeoff, the aircraft accelerates extremely quickly to reach its takeoff speed and can climb out rather quickly. The autopilot in this add-on is pretty well modelled with several modes: IAS, VS or ALT hold, along with an arming switch to hold a pre-selected altitude. I elected to test out IAS mode, in which the autopilot will attempt to hold the speed of the aircraft by pitching the nose. In my experience, given the correct throttle settings, the autopilot can maintain the speed displayed on the PFD (which corresponds to the speed which you engaged IAS mode at, there appears to be no manual way to set the IAS hold speed) to within 2 to 3 knots.

    Tags: carenado, f50, fokker

    1. gt401964's Avatar
      gt401964 -
      Too expensive.
    1. flightman's Avatar
      flightman -
      Thanks for the review. As you say the FMS is rather simplified and I find it struggles to cope with waypoint changes, often missing them. This may be because it flies offset from the magenta line, so might never get close enough the waypoint to change leg. There are a lot of small things wrong with the F50. I reported a long list of issues back in March but Carenado don't seem interested in supporting the product. The most annoying thing for me is the night lighting. On the main panel there is only floodlighting. If you turn that off you lose the instrument lighting too, very unrealistic. There is no dimming on the main panel either, yet the overhead panel has it.

      On page 3 of the review you say you couldn't find a way to manually adjust the IAS for autopilot IAS hold mode. The IAS can be changed using the Pitch INC/DEC wheel on the AP control panel on the pedestal. The same control as is used to adjust VS in VS mode.


    1. squiremel's Avatar
      squiremel -
      It's a nice plane to fly and to look at. I don't notice any major FPS issues with all the extra eye candy but there are lite versions for those who are FPS conscious. Superb for those regional flights.
    1. jgmustang's Avatar
      jgmustang -
      Could not take off with this aircraft in other words never came close to V1 even at full power.
    1. lear45xr's Avatar
      lear45xr -
      Quote Originally Posted by gt401964 View Post
      Too expensive.

      Have to strongly agree. As with most add-ons this is overpriced. No value here. Price sells. Why not sell more for a reasonable price as opposed to a few way over priced.
    1. smokin's Avatar
      smokin -
      Totally agree with the elevated price comments. I can afford it, but will no longer support it. Literally, hundreds of dollars of poorly designed FSX products residing on my computer. No more.
    1. smokin's Avatar
      smokin -
      Try this again. FSX prices are getting too expensive.
    1. lear45xr's Avatar
      lear45xr -
      Quote Originally Posted by smokin View Post
      Totally agree with the elevated price comments. I can afford it, but will no longer support it. Literally, hundreds of dollars of poorly designed FSX products residing on my computer. No more.

      Smokin I'm the same as you. I can afford all the add-ons my heart desires but no more of these over priced aircraft. I'm done getting bent over just to get another one. Hope these developers are listening...PRICE SELLS!
    1. leodirk's Avatar
      leodirk -
      Thank you. It is a very nice Fokker 50 to fly. The very best Fokker 50 I have ever flown. The FMC is bad. But when you use Aivlasoft you can fly the flight plans reasonable with the FMC.
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