For FSX/P3D Published by
Reviewed by Rob Scott
Up until recently, if you wanted to fly a good quality
Beechcraft B1900D in FSX the only real option you had was the
PMDG version. Since the release of FSX, I have clocked up
countless hours in the PMDG B1900D for FS9 ported over into FSX.
It works well and is still fun to fly, but it is now 10 years
old and times change.
When I heard Carenado were developing their own version of the
B1900D for FSX, I knew two things, it would be very good, and
that I had to get it. So, on release day I bought and downloaded
it to see if it could tempt me to finally retire my PMDG B1900D.
The Beechcraft B1900 is a twin engine, turboprop aircraft with a
pressurised cabin which seats 19 passengers. It was primarily
designed as a regional airliner to be used from airports with
fairly short runways. It first flew in September 1982 and
entered service in February 1984. A total of 695 B1900s were
built, which makes it the most successful 19 passenger aircraft
It has a range of over 1,000 nautical miles, but in reality it
is most often used on the shorter routes between 100 - 600
nautical miles (up to two hours). The B1900D is often preferable
to jet aircraft on routes up to 300 nautical miles due to the
fuel efficiency of its engines.
The B1900D was designed to allow passengers to stand upright in
the cabin, a result of which meant that winglets and more
powerful engines & propellers were needed (compared to the B1900
& B1900C) to overcome the extra drag produced by the modified
Availability and Installation
Carenado's Beechcraft B1900D is available as a 'download only'
product from Carenado and Carenado resellers. Some resellers
offer a master CD / DVD back-up service for a minor additional
cost. I purchased my copy direct from Carenado on release day
for US$39.95 (about £25) – watch out for foreign currency
commission charges from your credit card provider. The
downloaded file is 218MB and took hardly any time at all to
download from Carenado’s servers. After completing your purchase
you can download six more free liveries from Carenado. I can
only assume they were not included as standard in order to save
disk space on peoples hard drives.
Installation is quick and simple, and I would not expect
anything less from a payware developer now. Run the installer
and follow the on screen instructions, a few minutes and 760MB
of disk space later, you are ready to go.
In my opinion Carenado have always been a bit hit and miss with
their documentation. In this case it is a hit. In total, there
are 10 documents, although some are not very long, so they could
probably have been merged into one:
Avidyne Multifunction Display:
● B1900D EFIS;
● B1900D Emergency Procedures;
● B1900D FMS (see separate section);
● B1900D Normal Procedures;
● B1900D Performance Tables;
● Carenado GNS530 Users Guide;
● Electronic VSI;
● Recommended Settings; and
The ‘Normal Procedures’ document is probably the first one you
will look at, and it consists of very detailed procedures for
all phases of flight. Some of them are not applicable to the
desktop simulator but I cannot complain about that because, on
the other side of the coin, if this detail was not included some
people would complain it was missing. The only other document I
would like to have seen included is a full tutorial.
The model features listed by Carenado for the B1900D are typical
of other models in the Carenado range and HD Series and include:
● Carenado GNS530 with Reality XP integration option;
● EFIS (EADI and EHSI);
● Avidyne multi function display;
● HD quality textures (2048 x 2048);
● realistic night lighting effects on panel and cockpit,
including separated lighting for instrument panel and cockpit
● cockpit vibration effects;
● landing and taxi halo effect lights;
● original HQ 3D digital stereo sounds;
● dynamic environment gauge reflections;
● windows lighting scratches effect;
● volumetric side view prop effect; and
● dynamic propeller shine effect.
General External View
External Rear Quarter View
The trend of Carenado producing stunning looking aircraft
continues once again. The internal and external models are
superb and feature HD 2048 x 2048 textures. The external model
does not suffer from any jagged edges and the virtual cockpit
(there is no 2D cockpit) is a very nice place to have as your
office. The only criticism I have of the cockpit is some of the
readouts on the gauges were a bit tricky to read without
‘popping’ them into a 2D window.
Flight Management System
I was quite intrigued at the inclusion of an FMS and how it
would work on a ‘simple’ turboprop. Its operation is much the
same as Boeing and Airbus FMS' by using the LSK to confirm /
advance between screens, so it should not take a great deal of
studying in order to use it.
There is no need to program the route into the FMS as it takes
if from the default FS flight plan, but it is quite easy to
program a route in should you wish to do so. I found it a little
frustrating when the FMS displayed the options for the waypoint
it only listed its co-ordinates (whereas some other FMSs list
how far away the waypoint is). Some educated guesswork was
needed to make sure I selected the correct waypoint.
I like that you are able to modify the default FS flight plan
from within the FMS if you need to. One thing I did not see
noted in the FMS documentation was if you input the crossing
altitude for the waypoint, this altitude is automatically
transferred to the altitude select window and cannot be changed
during flight (unless you change it in the FMS). If you have
calculated these crossing points accurately, and are not at the
mercy of the FSX ATC, it should not be a problem. The part of
the FMS that is of most use to me is the fuel section. It gives
you up to date readings for aircraft weight, endurance, and
range, based on the current aircraft configuration. I found it
to be fairly accurate and has helped me in being able to plan my
fuel loads correctly prior to a flight.
All of the above is rendered useless unless the B1900D performs
in the air, which it does. The B1900D flies with the agility of
smaller corporate, twin engine, turboprops, and care must be
exercised initially if you are not familiar with this type of
aircraft. I have never flown any aircraft so cannot comment with
any real accuracy, but I felt the handling is fantastic and
feels about right. Carenado state the B1900D behaves as per the
real aircraft and has been tested by real pilots and the
modelling of the flight dynamics appeared to accurately reflect
the performance specifications and flight characteristics of the
real world aircraft. Establishing yourself on a stable approach
can take some practice, particularly into smaller airports and
on visual approaches. However, once you are practiced at it, you
will find the B1900D reasonably forgiving. To be fair, I would
not expect anything less from Carenado now. Unless the weather
was very bad I did not engage the autopilot until I was almost
at cruise altitude and most of my approaches were hand flown.
Cannot Fault the Externals from any Angle
I found the fuel flows published in the documentation were
reasonably accurate. With the suggested power / prop settings,
the fuel flow was slightly lower than stated in the
documentation, about 40 to 50 lbs per hour less. I suppose this
is better than it being the other way, especially if you are
planning a long flight.
The engines have an original high quality digital stereo sound
set which is superb. There is a realistic delay from when you
make changes to the throttle to when the engines respond, so you
will always need to stay about 5 to 10 seconds ahead of where
you want to be in order to not let the aircraft run away from
I had no issues at all with frame rate performance, even when
flying into busy airspace with detailed scenery and heavy
weather. My frame rates are locked at 30 fps and they rarely
dipped below that mark.
This version of the Carenado Beechcraft B1900D is for FSX / P3D
only. Other specified technical requirements are as follows:
● Windows XP (with SP3), Vista or Windows 7 (32 or 64bit);
● Microsoft Flight Simulator FSX with SP1 and SP2 (or
Acceleration Pack) or Lockheed Martin Prepar3d Flight Simulator
● Pentium V, 3GHz or similar, 2GB RAM, 512MB graphics card, and
760MB available HDD space.
My initial question was, 'Could Carenado make me to finally
retire my PMDG B1900D?'. The answer is a resounding, 'YES'. The
two just do not compare and Carenado have shown just how far our
hobby has advanced in the last 10 years. I have racked up a lot
of hours in the B1900D and will rack up many more.
So what about the score? As fantastic as this aircraft is, I
felt the B1900D is lacking something which I cannot quite put my
finger on, so consequently, I cannot award it full marks. Almost
everything about it is first rate, but there is a missing 'X'
factor. However, do not let this put you off buying it, as the
Carenado B1900D will be a fantastic addition to your hangar.
The Beechcraft B1900D is another excellent product from Carenado
which displays the typical high quality and attention to detail
we have come to expect, and it represents very good overall
value for money.
Quality and attention to detail.
Realistic modelling and performance.
Some panel gauges difficult to read.
Minor performance variances.
● Flight Characteristics (does it fly by the numbers):
● Flight Dynamics (does it feel like what it looks like) :
● Value for
The Carenado Beechcraft B1900D is awarded an overall Mutley’s Hangar score of 9.2/10, with a "Highly Recommended" and a Mutley's Hangar Silver Award.