P3Dv5 is here.

Discuss anything here...nothing political or controversial please.
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TimC340
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P3Dv5 is here.

Post by TimC340 »

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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by gsnde »

That’s more than a hotfix...:-)
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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by John Young »

It looks quite impressive, but in the 130 listed new features/fixes/improvements, I didn't notice anything on AI. Like FS2020, it seems to be a low priority.

Will we have to pay another $60 dollars (at least) for this? If that's the case, I'll wait to see how FS2020 pans out before contemplating a new purchase, if that's the case.

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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by TimC340 »

The only mention of AI is that they will be ok with sloped runways. However, the 8.33KHz frequency spacing and the introduction of TACAN (after it’s been in service for over 50 years!) may have ramifications. Jon M has also confirmed that ADE is ready for the v5 SDK features.

I have to say that this really looks like a point update (4.6) rather than a version update, but I guess it’s more revenue. Though I can’t see LM being too concerned with the ‘Academic’ market!
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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by gsnde »

Didn't they mention a complete new graphics / rendering engine? That would be a major feature, no matter if seen for AI / Scenery / user aircraft.

From mobile hence short

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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by TimC340 »

Yes, they do mention a new rendering engine: " An all new DirectX 12 rendering engine brings unparalleled performance fully harnessing the latest graphics technologies."
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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by Kulbit »

This post coming from the FSDT forum is really interesting about the new v5..

"We have been working with P3D V5 for a while, in case someone might have wondered why the usually constant flow of updates seemed to have slowed down recently and, of course, we couldn't even tell, because an NDA was in place until yesterday.

In general, the sim offers a fairly good backward compatibility with add-ons, which means you can expect lots of stuff will work without too many issues, requiring minimal updates. Sure, we'll have to update all installers, but this is not really a problem, so you should expect to see updated installers for all FSDT products on release day, or very shortly after that.

And yes, every FSDT update for P3D5 will be FREE. Nothing to do, other than installing the updates, no reactivation needed, unless you too the chance to reformat Windows in the process...

This would be a first step, to let users USE the products, without costing anything extra.

However, the change to DirectX 12 and other changes LM did to the basic rendering engine, have some impact on our products, which will require quite a bit of work on our side, which has been undergoing for some time, and is still is right now, because we are one of the few developers who used the sim PDK quite extensively and, in this specific case, we used DirectX 11 for the "Render To Texture" option, which allows us those basic features:

- Drawing text in the scenery using any Windows font you have installed. Some examples are the customizable Jetway numbers in GSX L2, the GSX Marshaller distance readout, the GSX Fuel counter display, the Active Info Panels and the AI displays in KORD V2, the ULD with their own individual ID codes.

- Drawing textures inside textures. This is likely the most important one, which allows you to customize ground operators and jetway logos in GSX by simply picking up an image, without having to configure a repaint. And, not using a repaint, meant we reduced the number of objects in GSX by about 7000 compared to the FSX version, thanks to this feature.

These two main features were made with DirectX 11, so they'll have to be rewritten for DirectX 12. And this is not easy as it sounds, since while DirectX 11 was a moderately/highly complex API, but still reasonably manageable to learn, DirectX 12 is a completely different kind of animal. Yes, the performance gains are REAL and not only that, they can get better and better with time, the better the code becomes in using them. This is no place to explain how DirectX 12 works but, in general, the main differences with DirectX 11 are:

- DirectX 12 is designed around multi-core CPUs, because it's way more efficient in using all cores to send more commands to the GPU at the same time, so you should finally see your precious GPU being used more, to do actual stuff, instead of waiting for the CPU to send data. This has increased complexity for developers, A LOT.

- DirectX 12 moves a lot of the responsibility in managing resources to the developer. With DX11, lots of memory management ( what goes in and out from RAM to VRAM ) happened inside DX11 itself or the video driver, nobody really knew and nobody had to care about it. Which means, if you had your settings too high, even more than your actual VRAM, the sim would just become slower and start to stutter, textures would start to appear slower than usual, but nothing worse than that could happen. With DX12, you have a budget, which the OS sets up for you ( I'd guess it's about 80% of your entire VRAM, since Windows still needs some for itself ), and you MUST stay within, and if your app needs more, you are supposed to manage memory in your own code. This clearly have a performance advantage, because none the developer of the graphic engine surely knows better when and how HIS app needs more memory, surely better than the video driver or the OS. This, again, causes an increase in complexity, and the potential for developers to mess up, but also to get better performances.

If you see uninformed people saying "DX12, no big deal, it looks the same to me" or "I have this DX12 game, it's just 5% increase in fps compare to DX11, so what ?", it's because DX12 is so complex compared to DX11, that even the high-end games still haven't used it as they could. Just to put things in perspective, I think it has been YEARS since X-Plane developers discussed moving to Vulkan, and it came out just now, and it's still in Beta, and it doesn't provide ANY visual enhancement, just an fps increase.

Am I talking about DX12 so much, because I'm going to say in order to get all these new features back, you'll have to eventually pay for an upgrade, when they'll be available ?

Absolutely not. As I've said before, All our updates for P3D V5 will be and will always be FREE, I only wanted to explain quite clearly that, even if the sim is very similar to V4 when backward compatibility is concerned, in OUR case, with some products, the amount of work required to make them compatible with all their features, is quite significant and, because DirectX access is something that can potentially crash the sim, we need to test it, to be sure it's safe.

All of this to explain that, while all our updates will be free, even in their final version, we'll likely proceed in steps, like this:

- On P3D V5 release date, or very shortly after that, we'll have updated installers, which will let you USE our products as soon as possible.

- The "Render to Texture" feature will likely be initially DISABLED. This basically means no Logo on Jetways or ground vehicles, they'll be generic with only their base colors. And no Font, so no distance readout for the Marshaller and no Fuel Counters. Other than that, the program will continue to work exactly as before. KORD V2 requires DirectX/RTT for the Info and AI panels, so those won't work either, initially.

In the following weeks, we'll work on restoring RTT using DX12 first, and provide small updates to sceneries that might require them. P3D V5 renders objects a bit differently than V4, especially in relationship with Transparency and Dynamic Lights, so we might have to adjust some textures for some of our products.

- One of the main difference in the V5 graphic engine, is that now almost everything is PBR, including the base Terrain/Landclass. This was a bit of a problem in V4 when doing airports, since we could make a 100% PBR airport before, it was more like 90%, because for ground polygons, we generally use PBR only for Aprons, since the other background ( grass, snow, etc. ) had to offer a visual continuity with the surrounding scenery, which didn't use PBR so, it was as if they were living in different worlds, and if we did everything in PBR, it would look very weird, since the ground from the airport would react to the light in a different way than the ground outside.

In V5, the base Terrain is PBR as well, which means it looks better over different times of the day, it's more integrated with the sky lighting, so now it's possible to make an airport 100% PBR and won't have it stick it out badly as it would have in V4.

We already have an update ready for KORD V2, which will be released in the next weeks, and we'll release a similar one for LFSB. These are our two "90% PBR" products that requires it, older sceneries that ran in FSX too are less affected, since they weren't using PBR.

We plan to continue to offer updates in steps, when issues are found, and when the inevitable Hotfixes for the sim will come out, another area that might require some work are Dynamic Lights over PBR textures, we already updated most of them for KORD V2 and LFSB, but it's still something that might change, even this week of final testing.

Again, all of this will continue to be free for the whole P3D V5 lifetime.

And yes, we are also working in parallel to a big feature in GSX L2 that many users asked for..."
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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by TimC340 »

That's really interesting. I hadn't appreciated that DX12 was so much of a change. However, I suspect that - for our purposes - there won't be a lot of change initially. The potential for better scenery is interesting, and I assume that this change will make it easier to port stuff to/from FS20, which is also DX12.
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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by TimC340 »

Interesting that one of the Gallery shots is Iwakuni!

https://fselite.net/previews/lockheed-m ... o-gallery/
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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by Victory103 »

For the mil simmers TACAN has been a long awaited feature that developers have had to code in other ways. I just got v4.5 HF2 working fine or I guess it's never really done. For the C-130, I got all excited when I found the soft panel version, only to find out it did nothing. Looked over the SDK and learning how to code Shockwave gauges seemed way above me. Sadly still see the old Virt H-60s.
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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by Firebird »

God, I can remember in my day in the RAF that Navs used to grumble about TACAN, obviously out of earshot of pilots. about the fact that pilots used to think that Navs were becoming redundant.

I remember doing TACAN approaches in the sim as neither CGY nor WTM had ILS. The interesting thing about TACAN was the 63 rule that was used for Air to Air. Finding Tankers in quiet mode was very useful.
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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by Kulbit »

P3D v5 Beta with Orbx not yet upgraded sceneries...
By the way the sea rendition is awesome !!

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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by TimC340 »

Yes, it looks good. I don't know what ATC input you're using, but only hearing ATC with no replies from the aircraft he's talking to would do my head in!
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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by Joseph29 »

I have seen a few preview videos I have seen of v5 and I have not seen the cloud shadows on the ground in any of them. Has that feature been removed in v5?
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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by TimC340 »

Joseph29 wrote: 12 Apr 2020, 03:39 I have seen a few preview videos I have seen of v5 and I have not seen the cloud shadows on the ground in any of them. Has that feature been removed in v5?
Check Kulbit's video at 7:45 (the Lighting control screen). Clouds cast shadows is still in there as a selectable feature.
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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by Joseph29 »

TimC340 wrote: 12 Apr 2020, 08:15
Joseph29 wrote: 12 Apr 2020, 03:39 I have seen a few preview videos I have seen of v5 and I have not seen the cloud shadows on the ground in any of them. Has that feature been removed in v5?
Check Kulbit's video at 7:45 (the Lighting control screen). Clouds cast shadows is still in there as a selectable feature.
Guess I wasn't paying attention close enough. :)
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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by TimC340 »

I have the release version now up (but not running) on my computer. Why not running? It doesn't work! Within 30 secs of starting the default scenario (no addons installed), the sim stops with a GPU hangup. The GPU is an AMD Radeon 5700XT 8Gb, so a fairly high-end device, running on an Aorus Pro motherboard and an AMD 3900X 12-core CPU. The P3D forum is maxed-out just now, so I guess I'm not the only one!
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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by petebramley »

Think I will give it a month or so whilst they iron out the kinks. I am averse to being an unpaid beta tester !!

On the other hand I might just wait for FS2020 !!
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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by TimC340 »

I'm sure they'll get it sorted out soon. Meantime, I have v4.5 to keep me going!
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Re: P3Dv5 is here.

Post by Greg »

Works fine here. The sky looks great out of the box but as with every release, the ground textures don't, so ORBX Global is still a must. Luckily most ORBX stuff is already compatible so I'm brining them over now.

I can't say anything yet about AI compatibility. I don't expect too many issues but still need to test the Matrix regions. On the other hand, I expect that every airfield scenery will need to be checked since LM finally made some changes to the vector and airfield data in this release.
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