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Thread: Dim FSX airport lights

  1. #1

    Default Dim FSX airport lights

    Hi,

    It seems as if my airport lightning has been dimmed or nearly vanished in FSX. I have no idea why, but at almost every airport I fly from/to the blue and green taxi lights at apron are so dim, they're almost not visible. I have lots of addons and thought a FSX disc repair would sort the issue, but it hasn't. The screenshots (Heahtrow, EGLL default FSX airport) show the issue:

    (Screenshots are very dark, but where the black color is, the taxiways and runway are located)

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    I use ORBX Global+Vector, Europe and some of ORBX's North American sceneries.

    Does anyone know how to fix this? If i look at certain addons' websites, their images show colorful and visible taxiways and runways. I've checked LOD (4.5) but that hasn't been a problem before so I doubt that would now.

    Thanks

  2. Default

    You are aware of FTX Global Lights Configurator, yes? I don't use it but perhaps it will help.

    First thing I thought of was the movie "Heat" when De Niro and Pacino have their night time gun battle at the airports runways edge. Every time a aircraft approached, the lights would brighten, then dim after it had landed. What happens when you approach?
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  3. #3

    Default

    Yes I am aware of it - but it only edits the street lights and not runway lights. I've tried another program (FTXLights), but I am unsure if the two are matching programs, as FTXLights are not really doing anything either.

    At approach it is basically the same - very dim/dark PAPI lights and taxiway lights (once landed) are not visible if I don't zoom in on them closely.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Klammath Falls, OR
    Posts
    3,738

    Default

    A handy way to control the brightness of your runway/taxi-way/approach lights is the settings in the FSX.CFG file.
    Make a backup of your current FSX.CFG file before you do anything!!
    Open the FSX.CFG file with NotePad, which comes with Windows ONLY. Never use a word processor of any kind. They add coding that renders such files unusable by the sim.
    Look down through the file for the section titled [Display].
    NOT the one that looks like this: [DISPLAY.Device.NVIDIA GeForce GT 610.0], but the other, that just says [Display].

    Now, if they're not there already, add the following lines under the [Display] section:

    Code:
    RUNWAY_LIGHTS_SURFACE_SCALAR=1.27 //scales edge, center, end, touchdown, runways
    RUNWAY_LIGHTS_VASI_SCALAR=0.77 // scales VASI lights)
    RUNWAY_LIGHTS_APPROACH_SCALAR=0.77 // scales approach light bars
    RUNWAY_LIGHTS_STROBE_SCALAR=0.77 //scales RAILs and ODALs) 262144
    You can adjust the numbers to make the display look they way you desire. Increasing the numbers makes the lights brighter, decreasing them lowers the brightness.

    Save the file off, and start FSX. See if it looks the way you desire. If not, shut down FSX, adjust the numbers, save the file, and start FSX again. Lather, rinse, repeat. Remember, the sim only reads the .cfg file when it's first started, so every time you make a change, you must shut the sim completely down, wait about 30 seconds or so, then start it back up to see any changes. You must also make sure you save the file before any changes you've made will take effect.

    It takes a little time to get things exactly the way you want, but it's well worth the effort.

    Another way to accomplish the desired goal, is to use Airfield Lights Toolbox. A nifty little piece of freeware. Works well. I can dig up the download liink for you if you desire. To me, it's easier to make the FSX.CFG changes, but the FSDeveloper forums recommend using ALT.

    Up to you.
    Pat☺

    Had a thought...then there was the smell of something burning, and sparks, and then a big fire, and then the lights went out! I guess I better not do that again!
    Sgt, USMC, 10 years proud service, Inactive reserve now

  5. #5

    Default

    Pat,

    First and foremost, thanks for an elaborate answer.

    I forgot to mention I use REX Direct too which includes settings where I can choose the layout/look of runway and taxi lights. I now decided to change the lights to the most extreme one there was, and I also had a new version of "Halo"-bmp. downloaded from another website. By the looks of it, it looks ok now if I can tweak it a bit. Stupidly enough I replaced the new Halo-bmp with the old original so I lack that one now.

    I added your inputs into the FSX.cfg (I've got one CFG-file and one FSX.cfg which is a text-doc?) and that worked well on the runway, however it was not as needed as the taxi lights - but thanks anyway.

    Is there anywhere or anyone that could send me the Halo file in private message or here? Would be very appreciated.
    Last edited by gustafsg; 06-14-2018 at 05:04 PM.

  6. Default

    Always so helpful Pat - I'll try that as well!

  7. #7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by PhantomTweak View Post
    A handy way to control the brightness of your runway/taxi-way/approach lights is the settings in the FSX.CFG file.
    Make a backup of your current FSX.CFG file before you do anything!!
    Open the FSX.CFG file with NotePad, which comes with Windows ONLY. Never use a word processor of any kind. They add coding that renders such files unusable by the sim.
    Look down through the file for the section titled [Display].
    NOT the one that looks like this: [DISPLAY.Device.NVIDIA GeForce GT 610.0], but the other, that just says [Display].

    Now, if they're not there already, add the following lines under the [Display] section:

    Code:
    RUNWAY_LIGHTS_SURFACE_SCALAR=1.27 //scales edge, center, end, touchdown, runways
    RUNWAY_LIGHTS_VASI_SCALAR=0.77 // scales VASI lights)
    RUNWAY_LIGHTS_APPROACH_SCALAR=0.77 // scales approach light bars
    RUNWAY_LIGHTS_STROBE_SCALAR=0.77 //scales RAILs and ODALs) 262144
    You can adjust the numbers to make the display look they way you desire. Increasing the numbers makes the lights brighter, decreasing them lowers the brightness.

    Save the file off, and start FSX. See if it looks the way you desire. If not, shut down FSX, adjust the numbers, save the file, and start FSX again. Lather, rinse, repeat. Remember, the sim only reads the .cfg file when it's first started, so every time you make a change, you must shut the sim completely down, wait about 30 seconds or so, then start it back up to see any changes. You must also make sure you save the file before any changes you've made will take effect.

    It takes a little time to get things exactly the way you want, but it's well worth the effort.

    Another way to accomplish the desired goal, is to use Airfield Lights Toolbox. A nifty little piece of freeware. Works well. I can dig up the download liink for you if you desire. To me, it's easier to make the FSX.CFG changes, but the FSDeveloper forums recommend using ALT.

    Up to you.
    Pat☺
    However, once the runway and taxiways have been sorted out now, all my addon scenery (3rd party) have gone black. I.e the terminal buildings, and also some runways too on certain 3rd party addon airports.

    What could be the cause?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Klammath Falls, OR
    Posts
    3,738

    Default

    I'm not absolutely certain, but the settings I showed should, SHOULD I say, have nothing to do with anything but lights, the lights shown in the comments following each line.
    Easy way to find out, anyway. Just comment them out, ie: put // in front of each line you don't want. Save, test. If they have nothing to do with the scenery trouble, no trouble. Just take the comment symbols (//) out again.

    It may be that your processor is having trouble painting the lights the way you want, AND all the add-on scenery "stuff" you may have. Have you tried turning things down to see if it helps? I've found that the Airport Vehicles really take a lot of resources. So do 3D clouds. Especially with add-on "stuff", like REX.
    Just a thought. Adjusting scenery settings in the FSX.CFG file is a whole big can o' worms...

    By the way, the .TXT file you have may be a back up of some kind. Maybe REX made it when you installed it. Maybe something else. I still strongly recommend making your own back up of your FSX.CFG file before you make any sort of changes. I just rclick on it, and click COPY, then lclick on a blank area, rclick there, and click Paste. You wind up with a file named FSX-COPY.cfg. The next one is FSX-COPY2.cfg and so on. Very easy to restore. Just delete the one you don't want, change the name of a backup to FSX.CFG again, and bingo! All done.

    On a separate subject, have you tried looking in the library for the Halo file you desire?
    Like HERE, or THIS ONE over on Avsim?

    Might be worth a look.

    And, once again, the program Airfield Lights Toolbox, which you can download from HERE, is a very helpful little utility.

    Hopefully, something in all my ramblings is useful...
    Pat

    Had a thought...then there was the smell of something burning, and sparks, and then a big fire, and then the lights went out! I guess I better not do that again!
    Sgt, USMC, 10 years proud service, Inactive reserve now

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