Adelaide International Airport (YPAD) is one of the oft forgotten major airports in Australia when it comes to scenery design. AUscene's FSX reproduction brings Adelaide International Airport to life and finally does justice to this internationally award recognised airport.
History and Location
Adelaide International Airport was first established in 1955 and the new dual domestic / international terminal was opened in 2005, with the new ATC Tower officially opened on 25th August 2013. It is the principal airport serving Adelaide, the capital city of South Australia. Located approximately only six kilometres (3.7 miles) from the city centre, it is the fifth busiest airport in Australia by passenger volume. In 2007, the airport was rated the world's second best airport in the 5 – 15 million passenger category at the Airports Council International (ACI) 2006 Awards in Dubai.
A short flight distance from Melbourne, Canberra and Sydney, YPAD lends itself to being either a departure or destination point for these and other airports, be it for a quick business / commercial jet flight or a general aviation flight.
Availability and Installation
Adelaide International X is available from PCAviator Australia as a 'download only' product (a master back-up CD / DVD service is also offered for a minor additional cost). It is priced at AU$27.95, or the equivalent on currency cross rates. The file size of 237MB is good considering the detail and quality of the scenery and it requires approximately 618MB of HDD space for installation.
The installation process is easy and intuitive and the installer automatically "adds" the scenery in FSX.
As part of the installation, a 12 page user manual is provided in Adobe Acrobat format (.pdf) and this is accessible from the …\FSX\Addon Scenery\Adelaide X\Documents folder. The manual provides information on the following:
● an overview of Adelaide International Airport;
● optimal settings for FSX; and
● extras – optional extra scenery files.
Adelaide International X includes the following major features:
● highly detailed representation of YPAD;
● highly detailed custom ground layer;
● 30cm high resolution aerial image;
● PAPI and approach lighting;
● custom and realistic night lighting;
● accurate placement of buildings and vegetation;
● high quality and painted textures;
● working NAVAIDS (ILS, VOR / DME, NDB);
● animated road traffic around the airport;
● accurate gate assignments;
● compatible with Orbx FTX AU Australia;
● compatible with most AI traffic programs; and
● living environment.
Adelaide International X predominantly covers the airport precinct and some immediate surrounds, but there are other isolated areas further from the airport that are also covered, such as Morphettville Racecourse. With a resolution coverage in the airport precinct and the immediate surrounding area of 30cm, a comparison of the coverage area using Google Earth and FSX images demonstrates the accuracy in detail in Adelaide International Airport X.
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The general level of detail in Adelaide International X is excellent. The detail around the airport precinct is of a very high level and even includes the ground texture variations that are evident in the surface of Runway 05/23 and Taxiways F3, F4, and F5. Other than the terminal, all the major on airport facilities and operations are included, such as, Australian Air Express, Australian Federal Police, Cobham Aviation, DHL, Pilatus, Q Catering, Qantas Freight, Rex Airlines, and the Royal Flying Doctor Service. The airport also has a good balance of static scenery and AI vehicle movement around the airport.
Likewise, the representation of commercial and industrial areas around the airport precinct are excellent, with places such as the iconic Ikea store and the United petrol station at the airport entrance, the Harbour Town Shopping Mall at West Beach and the wharf, boat marina, and luxury apartments at Glenelg all being depicted accurately.
The airport night lighting was stunning and very realistic and added to the immersive experience and feel of flying into the airport at night.
A folder of additional scenery extras is provided as part of the installation. The User Manual provides details regarding these and how to add them to the active scenery.
The scenery did not include the new car park development in front of the terminal building, however, this is probably due to the lack of availability of suitable aerial photography.
The scenery blended reasonably well with FTX AU Australia, although it has a more "dry climate" look to it. However, there was a notable texture anomaly with Morphettville Racecourse and some playing fields in the same vicinity, in that they appear covered in tree vegetation. This is more than likely generated by FTX Global, and I would expect it can be easily addressed in a subsequent update.
There also appeared to be a possible error with ramp parking designation in the general aviation parking area, as an AI Boeing 737-800 parked in the area in front of the Rex Airlines building. Having said that, this could also be a factor of the AI traffic program.
Quality of Buildings
The detail of individual buildings are accurate, in both their geographical positioning and physical size. A review of comparative images from FSX and Google Earth clearly demonstrate the high level of building accuracy represented in Adelaide International X. In particular, the new ATC Tower is excellent and has been accurately modelled and positioned
In short, the same level of quality already seen in the product overall is also evident in the quality of the buildings, both in the airport precinct and the surrounding area, and there is no use of distracting "eye candy".
There are no stated, specific system technical requirements, other than a system capable of running FSX. The Adelaide International X User Manual provides some good advice on the various FSX scenery settings that will maximise the performance of the software and FSX.
Adelaide International X performed excellently within the existing settings I have in FSX. I have my frame rate locked at 30 frames per second with most of my settings set high to very high and there was no need to make any adjustments to compensate for performance issues. There was a marginal impact on frame rate performance, but this was no more than I have experienced with detailed default FSX scenery and other detailed add-on scenery. Having said that though, paying heed to the relevant sections in the User Manual should avoid any disappointment and provide optimum performance for your particular system.
Value for Money
Value for money is always a difficult criteria to assess and can be very subjective. Adelaide International X is considered reasonable in the value for money stakes. Whilst the scenery is predominantly confined to the airport precinct and immediate surrounding area, the airport is located in a good geographical position to be able to maximise your use and flying enjoyment, be it in commercial jet aircraft or general aviation aircraft. If Adelaide International Airport (YPAD) is a part of your FSX flying, then Adelaide International X is a scenery add-on you will want to have.
Review Computer Specifications
The specifications of the computer on which the review was conducted are as follows:
● Intel i7 990X Extreme 3.46GHz;
● NVidia GTX580, 1536MB graphics;
● 12GB Kingston DDR3 2000MHz;
● Windows 7, (64bit);
● Microsoft Flight Simulator FSX Acceleration; and
● additional major add-ons include:
● REX Essential Plus Overdrive; ● Ultimate Traffic 2; ● Orbx FTX Global; ● Orbx FTX AU Australia; ● Orbx FTX EU England;
● Orbx FTX EU Northern Ireland; ● Orbx FTX EU Scotland; ● Orbx FTX EU Wales; ● Orbx FTX NZ North Island; ● Orbx FTX NZ South Island;
● Orbx FTX NA Northern Rocky Mountains; ● Orbx FTX NA Pacific Fjords; ● Orbx FTX NA Pacific Northwest;
● Orbx FTX NA Southern Alaska; and ● Orbx FTX US Central Rocky Mountains.
Adelaide International X is an excellent scenery add-on. It is rich in detail and quality and AUscene have done a marvellous job in their representation of the airport. For anyone who flies to or from this airport regularly, or is simply looking to expand their Australian airport collection, Adelaide International X will be an addition to your scenery you will enjoy having.
Verdict and Rating
Adelaide International X is a solid product from AUscene that displays a high level of quality and attention to detail.
● High quality.
● Excellent level and attention to detail.
● Reasonable value for money.
● Minor noted anomalies with Orbx FTX products.
|• Scenery Coverage:||9.0/10|
|• Level of Detail:||9.0/10|
|• Quality of Buildings:||9.510|
|• Value for Money:||8.5/10|
|Mutley’s Hangar score of 9.1/10, "Highly Recommended" and a Mutley's Hangar Silver Award.|