• Review: Active Sky XP


    Fortunately, or unfortunately depending on your perspective of ideal flight conditions, my current geographical location and season seems perfect to experience what ASXP has to offer. I loaded up X-Plane 11.31, selected a favorite aircraft (X-Hangar Aerostar 700) and set the airport to CYHM John C. Munro International Airport. Since it's winter here in Canada, the METAR didn't disappoint: 23022G30KT 8SM -SN DRSN BK023 BK037 M19/M24 A2989. Yep, it's winter here.

    I departed and climbed up to FL240, climbing up through the cloud layers and precipitation. The visual effect were as I expected, normal X-Plane clouds and precipitation (see Features and Limitations for information about the Active Sky replacement textures). Simulator frame rates didn't appear to suffer too much; I saw 20-30 fps in the climb, and at cruise over 30 fps.

    When I was nearing the top of climb, I wondered to myself "how do I know that it's working correctly?" This thought put me on the trail of where the weather file is stored (in the X-Plane root folder) and how I can verify it's working. I opened the X-Plane Flight menu and selected the Weather option in order to test my theory.

    HiFi - ASXP

    HiFi - ASXP

    Looking at the first of the two images above, notice the Weather Mode field at the bottom left corner of the X-Plane program; it reads "from custom METAR (.rwx) file.

    This should indicate that ASXP is providing the weather for the simulator. If you wish to verify it's using the correct .rwx file, select "Load new METAR" beside the Weather Mode field and select the METAR.rwx file in the X-Plane 11 root folder.

    Looking at the second of the two images above, notice the Weather Mode field says "Match Real World Conditions". This indicates that the default X-Plane weather engine is taking care of the weather business. Now, compare the differences between the information in the two images regarding the cloud layers and wind layers.

    The differences might not immediately jump out at you, but it does show that ASXP is doing its job. The gusty winds at the various flight levels provided some light turbulence, which didn't overwhelm the sim flying experience and added just the right amount of realism.

    To finish up the flight, I returned to CYHM, descended for a cloud break as the reported ceiling was 2500' and performed a visual arrival (hah!) at Hamilton airport. The local visibility wasn't stellar, but it was at least VFR.

    1. W33's Avatar
      W33 -
      My first purchase for XP11 and enjoying it very much.

    1. bstikkel's Avatar
      bstikkel -
      Quote Originally Posted by W33 View Post
      My first purchase for XP11 and enjoying it very much.

      Yes, I use it in P3Dv4 and FSX and also in those flightsims it is amazing good!
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