AirplaneGeeks 377 Flight Simulation on the PC

Airbus A319 Czech Airlines OK-MEK

An enthusiast talks about PC flight simulation, Dubai Air Show 2015 debrief, flight training with the Cirrus Aircraft SR22 at Emirates, antitrust lawsuit blocks United’s plan to purchase slots, and bag fees increase at low cost carriers.


Guest Nicolas Jackson talks about PC-based flight simulators. We learn that you can create the flight simulation experience you want – from flying a GA airplane in the pattern around your local airfield, to a transcontinental commercial flight.

We talk about alternatives to Microsoft Flight Simulator X (FSX), such as Lockheed Martin’s Prepar3D® simulation software and X-Plane from Laminar Research. Nicolas recommends the Steam edition of FSX distributed by Dovetail Games for new simmers. He also tells us about, an international online flying network, and broadcasting on, a live streaming video platform and community for gamers.

Nicolas Jackson

Nicolas Jackson

Nicolas Jackson fell in love with aviation at the age of 10 when he got his first ride in a GA aircraft. Five minutes at the stick and he was hooked. Soon after that first flight, he bought Sierra Pro Pilot 99. He later switched to Microsoft Flight Simulator starting with FS98 and running all the way to FSX. He started flying on the international online flying network VATSIM with complex airliner add-ons in 2006, and hasn’t looked back since. Nicolas currently flies a variety of FSX aircraft and co-hosts the Unicom Podcast as part of The IFlySimX Team.   


Resources for flight simulation:


Boeing, Mostly Booked Until 2020, Comes Up Empty at Dubai Air Show

The Airbus A350 and A320 family, as well as the Boeing 787 and 737, are sold out to 2020 and beyond. Airlines and leasing companies have no incentive to purchase more airplanes.

OPINION: Dubai air show sees lack of commercial sales from Middle East

Bombardier unveils launch customer for CS300 airliner

airBaltic becomes the launch customer for the CSeries CS300 airliner when it takes delivery in the latter part of 2016. The Latvian flag carrier has orders for 13 firm and 7 options for the 160 passenger CS300.

Bombardier said it has 603 orders and commitments for the CS300 and CS100, 243 of which are firm orders. Also, Bombardier said it was nearing completion of the CS100 flight test program and was “on track” for certification of the airplane by Transport Canada this year. CSeries flight test vehicles took more than 1,000 flights during testing.

DUBAI: SuperJet confirms March delivery and winglets for CityJet

CityJet plans to take delivery of the 98-seat Sukhoi Superjet 100 in March 2016. The Irish regional airline is negotiating for 15 Superjets with 10 options.

DUBAI: Embraer details plan for E2 test fleet

Embraer plans to build six test aircraft as part of the E2 E-Jet re-engining program: four of the E190-E2 variant and two of the E195-E2. Both E195-E2s and three of the E190-E2s would be ready by end of 2016, with the fourth following in 2017. The Pratt & Whitney PW1900G will power the planes, and Dutch lessor AerCap will be the launch customer for the 97-seat E190-E2.

DUBAI: USAF secretary to redouble efforts on sluggish FMS process

US Air Force secretary Deborah Lee James says industry and regional partners voiced complaints that the approval process for US foreign military sales is slow.

Military spend outshines orders at Dubai Airshow

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) Air Force bought two Saab Global 6000 long-range surveillance aircraft, and will upgrade two existing Saab 340 jets. Lebanon will purchase six Embraer Super Tucano aircraft for basic missions and training. Boeing says five customers are interested in its Maritime Surveillance Aircraft, a long-range spying plane. Lockheed Martin was awarded a $262.8 million contract from the U.S. Air Force to service Saudi Arabia’s F-15 sniper targeting system.

Emirates Airline Selects Cirrus Aircraft SR22 for Flight Training Academy Fleet

Emirates Flight Training Academy is going to use a fleet of twenty-two Cirrus SR22 aircraft for its flight training program.

U.S. Tries to Block United’s Acquiring More Slots at Newark

United Continental Holdings Inc. wants to buy 24 slots at Newark Liberty International Airport, from Delta Air Lines Inc. The U.S. Justice Department filed an antitrust lawsuit to block the sale.

Justice Department antitrust chief Bill Baer says, “Allowing United to acquire even more slots at Newark would fortify United’s monopoly position and weaken the ability of other airlines to compete. That would leave the 35 million air passengers who fly in and out of Newark every year holding the bag.”

Frontier, Spirit Airlines raise bag fees for holidays

Last year, ultra low cost carrier Spirit Airlines began increased bag fees for the holidays, and they are doing the same this year. Frontier Airlines is also increasing their bag fees, but not just for the holidays. Frontier says they’ll charge a higher fee during the college spring break season, and during the summer travel season, from June 9 through Aug. 16.

Senator blasts airlines for holiday bag-fee boost; Frontier chief strikes back

Sen. Bill Nelson of Florida, the ranking Democrat on the Senate’s transportation committee sent letters to major airline CEOs asking them not to raise bag fees. Nelson wrote, “These increased surcharges fly in the face of declining fuel costs and appear focused on increasing profitability on the backs of American families,”

Airplane of the Week

Dassault Rafale

Dassault Rafale

This week David looks at the tip of the spear for the Armee de L’Air, the Dassault Rafale.

Across the Pond


Pieter welcomes back Diego López-Salazar from Aeropodcast to talk about his recent visit to Airbus and their Innovation Day presentations. They talk about some of the non-flying innovations Airbus is creating that may well find uses in other industries, such as Airbus Glasses, waste compactors, and paper cable ties. Pieter and Diego also get a short discussion in on the latest British Airways news, that IAG owned Vueling boss Alex Cruz is to become Chairman and Chief Executive of British Airways.

Follow the Spanish-language Aeropodcast on Twitter and Facebook.


Terrafugia founder Carl Dietrich appears in the movie Back in Time,” a documentary tribute to the Back to the Future movie series. The film is available on Netflix, Amazon, and iTunes, with tour dates running through November 24th. (The Terrafugia segment starts at 1:13:30 if you want to skip straight to it.)

Connie’s 60th Birthday Start Up

25 Things You Didn’t Know About Air Force One

New Routes Mean More Noise for Some Homes Near Airports


Post photo Airbus A319 Czech Airlines OK-MEK courtesy aerosoft.

Opening and closing music courtesy Brother Love from the Album Of The Year CD. You can find his great music at

4 thoughts on “AirplaneGeeks 377 Flight Simulation on the PC

  1. Jean

    Great episode. However, you failed to mention the newest and most prominent simulator out there at this moment, DCS: World.
    It started as a simulator for USAF A-10C pilots, making a transition from A model to C model of the Warthog.
    It’s as detailed as a simulator can be at this moment and it probably the best in the looks department also.

    Check it out and maybe do an update. 🙂

  2. @pilot_ngb

    Jean beat me too it. Another great episode however your flight sim guest sold the hobby short.

    ATC – No mention of PilotEdge (google it). Real World Controllers available 24/7 in the a portion of the US.

    Intel vs AMD – AMD processors/GPU’s suck for anything greater than out of the box FSX. To run the best add-ons you need a Intel CPU > 4Ghz and a GPU 9xx series. An out of the box PC off the shelf will run standard FSX/P3D but you need to beef up your PC if you want it to look great.

    DCS – DCS World is now at Open Beta 1.5. You can go and shoot your friends now. Sim is FREE. You need to buy the aircraft.

    David – How about a spot of air to air refuelling? –

  3. AviatorJ

    Interesting show but you really need to put Flight Sim users in three different categories; those who play it as a video game, those who treat it as a hobby and are searching for high levels of ‘realism’ and those who are looking for certain aspects to have realism in order to use it as a pilot training aid.

    You could get into countless arguments on the difference between the first two groups. If you’re not into games, just want to plug a joystick in and not worry about hardware requirement than your guest was right and the Steam version of FSX is the easiest way to get going.

    The second group like the two above comments will tell you there are many more options available as you get more into it. My current setup fits into that with a fairly beefy computer running Prepar3D with all the yoke, pedals, throttle quadrants ect. I even have a few monitors with utilizing TrackIR or an Oculus Rift to increase a greater immersion. Some people go all in building movable platforms, cockpits etc… trying their hardest to emulate actual flying.

    Then there’s the 3rd group which I fall into and that’s using a home setup for pilot training. You tell most pilots this and they will roll their eyes. I somewhat agree with that response because no amount of hardware, software or settings is ever going to emulate the controls and responses of a real plane. Even the $80,000 Full Motion FAA Certified Redbird doesn’t improve your stick and rudder skills. So when I talk about training I’m not referring to those type of activities.

    What I’m referring to is mainly procedural or equipment orientation items. Think of it as advanced ‘chair flying’. I recently passed my instrument checkride and in preparing for it I used the game with a 182 that matches my actual plane complete with a Garmin GTN650 addon. I even spent a few months using the above mentioned PilotEdge service to get my comfort level of requesting and copying clearances up. So instead of spending hours in the air fumbling with my GTN650 or botching up comms I was able to practice at home and implement in the air. My EFB (WingX) even connects with my computer allowing me to utilize that for all the charts, sectionals, ect.

    I can only speak for GA because that’s what I fly. But the point is I’m sure no matter what you fly or what you’re training for there are addons out there to help you accomidate using it for a purpose.

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