• Review: Aerosoft A330 Professional

    Animations

    In regards to the animations, I was not disappointed, as overall I felt that the external animations were nicely modelled and accurate. This was something that Aerosoft needed to pay particular attention to, as each aircraft will behave differently, especially on the A330 due to its unique fly-by-wire system. I would describe the characteristics of the flight controls as being somewhat delayed in response time (compared to other large aircraft), so it was nice to see how well it was integrated.

    Another area that Aerosoft have paid particular attention to was the landing gear. In real life I would describe the animation of the landing gear to look somewhat slightly delayed, as if the gear is coming up in sequences rather than one continuous and seamless motion. Regardless I believe the animation is accurate to the real thing. Then of course you have the usual control surfaces which I felt looked realistic and accurate.

    Aerosoft - Airbus A330 Professional     Aerosoft - Airbus A330 Professional

    Cockpit

    The cockpit overall was accurately modelled and well presented; just as well really, as I would not have expected anything less from Aerosoft. Of course, the A330 has the same common rating with the A320, so if you have been flying A320's beforehand, this will be a very familiar cockpit. I have no doubt that Aerosoft have inserted a number of things onto this new plane from their already produced A320 product. For example, despite having the same screens as the A320, they now have a warm-up feature included with them, as well as an updated ECAM and EICAS, appropriate for the larger A330. Compared to the A320 the cockpit feels larger, but at the same time resembles that compact feeling.

    Functionality And Handling

    I felt that overall the functionality of the A330 was similar to that of the Aerosoft A320. Of course, they share a number of systems with identical layouts, as is standard with Airbus cockpits. As such, I would expect not to have an issue operating some of the systems; for example, ADIRS, ECAMS and FCDU, and I didn't.

    Aerosoft - Airbus A330 Professional     Aerosoft - Airbus A330 Professional

    I found that I could operate them easily and similarly to what I do in the A320, but at the same time the A330 is not just a shell of an A320 with systems thrown in. No, this aircraft retains the features unique to the A330, but at the same time, Aerosoft have ensured an easy transition over from the previous Airbus products.

    Other than that, I found the majority of the switches were usable and accurate. My only real issue in this area was that I found a number of backup systems, such as the fire push buttons and ram air turbine system were not functional. I was hoping to possibly see these features being added and for Aerosoft to capitalise on their A320 series, but not so in this release. Perhaps in a later patch?

    I would not describe this aircraft as being study sim, but despite this, Aerosoft have done a good job with modelling all the systems and it does feel as if I am flying a heavy Airbus. One of the features I was keen to test was the automatic trimming. At first it seemed that the aircraft was slow to trim itself out, and subsequently, whenever the autopilot was disengaged the aircraft immediately pitched down. However, I believe that this issue has been resolved with recent updates as I am no longer experiencing this issue.

    Aerosoft - Airbus A330 Professional     Aerosoft - Airbus A330 Professional

    In regards to hand flying the aircraft (now with the latest update), the plane does feel different thanks to the fly-by-wire control system. In my opinion Airbus aircraft feel less responsive and slightly sluggish in comparison to Boeing and Cessna aircraft. This is quite normal for Airbus aircraft, however, initially I felt that the handling was seriously off and very unresponsive. Yet again I found that after I updated the aircraft this issue was rectified and I felt the handling to be both more responsive and accurate. Due to the issues I initially experienced, I would recommend updating the aircraft straight away after it has been installed (if it is an older version).

    Airbus aircraft also feature enhanced flight protection thanks in part to their fly-by-wire system. This means that pilots are not able to put the aircraft in potentially dangerous situations, such as a stall. The real-life system is highly complicated and can be very hard to accurately authenticate, but I do feel that Aerosoft have done a fantastic job at recreating it in this product. The pitch characteristics were similar to that of an Airbus aircraft when at low speeds, and there were preventions in place to prevent excessive/dangerous roll. Overall it felt very good and surprisingly accurate!

    Aerosoft - Airbus A330 Professional     Aerosoft - Airbus A330 Professional

    Tags: a330, aerosoft, airbus

    10 Comments
    1. flightman's Avatar
      flightman -
      "In my opinion Airbus aircraft feel less responsive and slightly sluggish in comparison to Boeing and Cessna aircraft. This is quite normal for Airbus aircraft"

      No, it's not normal in Airbus aircraft. They are just as responsive as Boeings. In fact Airbus aircraft are known for their responsive handling in manual flight. Please keep simming mythology out of reviews like this.
    1. pzl 104's Avatar
      pzl 104 -
      @flightman. No 'mythology'. In any FBW Airbus the maximum roll rate you can command is 15deg/sec in normal law which is really slooow. I've never flown a Boeing or Cessna with such a lazy roll rate.

      Contrary to the A320 I never had to apply full aileron multiple times in the 767 or any other jet during the approach.
    1. DominicS's Avatar
      DominicS -
      Quote Originally Posted by flightman View Post
      "In my opinion Airbus aircraft feel less responsive and slightly sluggish in comparison to Boeing and Cessna aircraft. This is quite normal for Airbus aircraft"

      No, it's not normal in Airbus aircraft. They are just as responsive as Boeings. In fact Airbus aircraft are known for their responsive handling in manual flight. Please keep simming mythology out of reviews like this.
      Before criticising the author of this article for certain opinions they might have, perhaps thank them first for the time and effort they put into writing it.

      In regards to the "mythology" as you put it, here is some further reading on the topic:

      https://slate.com/news-and-politics/...nd-airbus.html

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flight...ope_protection

      https://scudrunners.com/home/airbus-...s-perspective/

      Many thanks Alex for a thoroughly enjoyable review.

      Dominic
    1. Christian Bahr's Avatar
      Christian Bahr -
      Hello Nels.

      Thank you for your detailed, balanced and above all fair review!
      I really like the Aerosoft A330 Airbus, it differs from its smaller brothers the A318-A321. Both technically, optically and in handling. Very well done add-on. I love the airbus

      Best Regards
      Christian
    1. Nels_Anderson's Avatar
      Nels_Anderson -
      I'm just the publisher, please give credit for the review to author Alex Dickinson.
    1. Christian Bahr's Avatar
      Christian Bahr -
      Nels, now I've read it too. Review Author: Alex Dickinson

      Thanks to Alex for this great review!

      Best Regards
      Christian
    1. hivue's Avatar
      hivue -
      Maybe some of the problem is that everybody should make sure they understand the differences between how FBW and non-FBW flight controls operate. In AB FBW airplanes (which is all of them currently manufactured), stick deflection commands roll rate. The more you defect the stick left the faster the airplane rolls left. Once it's at the attitude you want you center the stick and it tends to hold that attitude. This is referred to as rate control attitude hold (the Space Shuttle used the same flight control philosophy). In non-FBW airplanes (and maybe FBW Boeing 777s & 787s, I don't know for sure) the more you turn the yoke left the further left the airplane will roll. When you center the yoke the airplane will tend to go back to level flight.

      I don't have this or any other AB airplane so I don't know how well it mimics AB FBW behavior (all airplanes in computer simulators are, per force, FBW). Maybe the article author can say.
    1. flightman's Avatar
      flightman -
      Quote Originally Posted by pzl 104 View Post
      @flightman. No 'mythology'. In any FBW Airbus the maximum roll rate you can command is 15deg/sec in normal law which is really slooow. I've never flown a Boeing or Cessna with such a lazy roll rate.

      Contrary to the A320 I never had to apply full aileron multiple times in the 767 or any other jet during the approach.
      15 deg/s is not "really slooow" for a transport category aircraft. It isn't an F-16. How often do you need to roll anywhere near that fast? Anyway, my comment was about it being less responsive than a Boeing. Whatever you think of the max roll rate in Normal Law, the response is not sluggish, there's no lag, which is what the review appeared to suggest.
    1. pzl 104's Avatar
      pzl 104 -
      Quote Originally Posted by hivue View Post
      In non-FBW airplanes the more you turn the yoke left the further left the airplane will roll. When you center the yoke the airplane will tend to go back to level flight.
      That's about the worst description I've ever read and it couldn't be any more wrong.
      A non- FBW aircraft doesn't behave like a car! Have you ever used a flightsim?
      FBW or not, the greater stick/yoke deflection, the higher the roll rate.
      The only difference is that the FBW system sometimes limits the roll rate and/or the maximum bank angle.
      Aircraft designers aim to design their aircraft with neutral to slightly positive spiral stability which means that the present bank angle tends to stay the same with neutralized controls.
    1. pzl 104's Avatar
      pzl 104 -
      Quote Originally Posted by flightman View Post
      15 deg/s is not "really slooow" for a transport category aircraft. It isn't an F-16. How often do you need to roll anywhere near that fast?.
      15deg/sec is slow, especially considering that the A320 is capable of delivering a roll rate of 40deg/sec. How often? Did you miss the part about the required full sidestick deflection? Btw. the CRJ 100 had a roll rate of 90deg/sec, even at low speed.
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