J G

Active Sky 2016 - Is it worth the upgrade?

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Has anyone out there upgraded from Active Sky Next to Active Sky 2016?

 

If you have made this upgrade, is it worth it? How much of an improvement is it (if any)? 

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I certainly think so JG, at least for P3D, much smoother transitions of clouds and no more popping of clouds, the claims from their site are quite evident in the sim And of course now is the time to buy  (collects commission from Reed :D).

 

Blurb-

Active Sky 2016 (AS16) represents the culmination of 16 years of weather simulation engine development!  New In-Cloud Motion Effects, Weather Scenarios System, Airborne Weather Radar, P3D v3 Visibility Smoothing and Volumetric Fog Integration, Navigraph Data Integration, Re-designed Map-based Custom Weather Editing System, Universal Web Companion App, an Improved Mapping System and a High-Latitude Cloud Squeeze Fix are just a few of the new features to debut in this brand new version of Active Sky.

 

Beyond the many new features, AS16 also extends and improves all aspects of weather simulation and depiction, from data parsing, to synthesis, interpolation, depiction, performance, and everything in-between, your entire weather experience will be more realistic than ever before.

 

AS16 also incorporates full integration with Active Sky Cloud Art (ASCA), our brand new graphics add-on for both FSX and P3D.  ASCA includes cloud textures, sky textures, and brand new 3D cloud models to transform your skies, while also debuting a ground-breaking new feature when used in combination with AS16: Real-Time Dynamic Cloud and Sky Textures!  This enables realistic weather-influenced texture variation that reloads throughout your flight without needing to shut down and restart your simulator.  You can use any graphics add-on(s) with AS16, but dynamic texture reloads require the AS16+ASCA combination.
 

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JG, YES! 

I upgraded a few weeks back and then recently added ASCA to it. As Joe has already mentioned, the cloud transitions are now barely noticeable if at all. In cockpit view, you now get clouds passing over the nose and wings which adds another level of realism, for me at least.

The cloud formations are really stunning compared to default or previous versions of ASN.

I would say you can trust the blurb in this case.

Cheers.

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Thanks guys.

 

I watched a review on You Tube by Froogle which basically said that AS 16 was a vast improvement on AS Next.  It was hard to get a proper feel from the video as it was hard to see the cloud transitions in his video.  I think this is probably because they were so transparent as to not show up well in the video.

 

Froogle's view was that AS 16 was very good on its own, and that ASCA made it less realistic but perhaps more interesting.  I dont know what you guys think of that, it would be interesting to know.

 

Another question. What is the upgrade from AS Next path like?  Do you have to uninstall AS Next and Soft Clouds before you install AS 16 or is it a straight overwrite? 

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You can run the programs side by side (I did for a while) 1 for ASN for FSX and AS16 for P3D.

Don't bother with ASCA, the textures are nowhere as good as REX textures, the only difference is ASCA can inject different textures "on the fly".

You're welcome :hat:

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Thanks Joe.

 

I now have AS16 for FSX and love it, and I wont be getting ASCA, it is just fine with REX,

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Good decision JG! I'm really pleased you like it. 

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I'm a little confused and need some guidance here.  I have some Christmas money burning a hole in my pocket and am planning to update my sim software.  I mainly run FSX-SE and have Rex Essentials + Overdrive, updated to the latest (SP3 Hotfix, from 2014, believe it or not).

 

If I'm reading this thread correctly, it's possible and desirable to ALSO run the new AS 2016 in parallel with it.  Not sure I understand the difference between them and what each brings to the WX table, but am willing to buy AS 2016 if that's the thing to do.

 

Thanks for any advice and enlightenment.

 

John

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Hi John,

 

There is a trial key available which is the full version valid for 7 days. http://hifisimtech.com/as16-fsx-trial/

 

As much as we can rant and rave, or dismiss the product, that is only valid in our own experience.

 

However, I would recommend AS16 (but not the Cloud Art program) because of the extra realism it gives in the cockpit as well. There would be no need to uninstall REX as they can run alongside each other. Just use REX for the clouds/sun/suk/sea textures, and AS for the actual weather gen. 

:hat:

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Thanks guys for the precious info, I was looking for some good advice and found it here. Just got AS16 (upgrade from ASN) without ASCA, I'll be using REX for textures.

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Great choice Ros, wait until you experience the live cloud textures as you fly through thick cloud in the cockpit.. awesome!

 

Also, leave plenty of space between you and the departing/landing aircraft, the wake turbulence could cause you major headaches.

 

Ciao!

Joe

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Thanks Joe, will follow your advice! :thum:

I'm flying right now with the Connie from Brindisi to Naples and the cloudscape is amazing. I had to reduce the cloud turbulence, the passengers don't like rock and roll!

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@JA - Joes advice below is the best:

 

On ‎11‎/‎27‎/‎2016 at 08:41, mutley said:

You can run the programs side by side (I did for a while) 1 for ASN for FSX and AS16 for P3D.

Don't bother with ASCA, the textures are nowhere as good as REX textures, the only difference is ASCA can inject different textures "on the fly".

You're welcome :hat:

 

In short the best combination is AS16 with REX textures.  I have REX4 and Soft clouds which seems to be a great combination.

 

I am glad that someone else finds the official blurb from the websites as confusing as I do!!

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From their start-up screen, how do I tell Rex Essentials + Overdrive to only do textures?

 

John

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Hi John,

 

I have not had the program for ages but normally you generate the textures on an adhoc basis and the textures are copied into the FSX Textures folder and stay there until you create new textures.  So if you already have the cloud textures you like, then there would be no need to run REX at all if you have AS16 installed.

 

Joe 

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Yeah, I see Rex build and load textures when starting but didn't understand that they are persistent.  Since it does it each time, I thought it NEEDED to do it each time.  Not so?

 

John

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No John, the textures are persistent, REX doesn't unload them.

 

Joe

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OK, got it ($31 and change).  Installed and working - so far, so good.

 

John

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Once you have a textures set you are happy with, you don't have to open REX again, until you feel like changing them, maybe due to the season, maybe due to flying in a different area, but you can just ignore it once you've made and loaded a texture set. I only change mine maybe once every 4 months.

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I'm just coming in to this thread. The 777 has been on my mind for a while now and one of the items mentioned in the Airline2Sim dissertation on the install is the use of Active Sky and Rex (neither of which are mounted on my FSX platform).

 

I'm giving a lot of thought to doing a big jump - from FSX to P3D (which I have and don't use, yet) just for the 777. There's evidently some substantial gains to be had by using P3D and the cost of the 777 justifies the switch. I've been resisting the change more because I've finally got FSX and FSUIPC running to my immense satisfaction. Time to mess that up for sure.

 

Of course, I went to my favourite "reviews" ,site ;), but I found nothing on Active Sky. Any plans in the works?

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Hi March,

 

There's no plan to review AS16 in the time frame that you look to buy, however, I think if you look at the overwhelming level of positive responses and feedback both here and other (lesser!) fora you could possibly form a decision on that. :) 

 

Joe

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I can say that installing AS2016 into FSX-SE was a piece of cake.  Can't say one way or the other about P3D, however.

 

John

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2 hours ago, mutley said:

Hi March,

 

There's no plan to review AS16 in the time frame that you look to buy, however, I think if you look at the overwhelming level of positive responses and feedback both here and other (lesser!) fora you could possibly form a decision on that. :) 

 

Joe

 

Thanks, @Joe Lawford, looking that way for sure.

 

Probably needs to be set in a different post, but I've had issues with my Cessna Trim Wheel and P3D, as well as problems with the PMDG 737NG and the trim wheel - I've got to get that one put to bed, first. Seems every time I try to switch back and forth between the sims I get this issue. I've long ago removed all of the Saitek drivers, the key to the problem, but like the proverbial 'bad penny' the issue keeps coming back. I'm studying my notes right now. I've got to get P3D stable before I go any further. No WiFi on the sim computer, so bback later.

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Got that issue solved - drivers again! Where are the darn thing coming from?

 

Any way, started with Rex Essentials. Wow! Been at least an hour now and still downloading.

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All sorted John? looking at maybe upgrading fromASN to AS16 with my REX HD Textures and Soft Clouds, I am guessing by the previous posts they work well....

 

On the subject of Saitek trimwheel I find if I move the wheel it disables my Thrustmaster flightstick, dont know how and certainly dont know how to stop it happening...driving me bonkers, in FSX this is as I have sacked P3D......

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