Beta Update And A Recent Stream

Testing of the new X-Plane 11.5 Beta 1 continues today. I spent some time with VR yesterday, and found it very finicky. But I think this is more about Oculus than X-Plane: since I moved to the Rift-S my Oculus software has been very buggy and unreliable. So much so that I’d pretty much given up trying to use it in X-Plane 11.41. Regardless, what I found yesterday was that I was able to fly VR under Vulkan if I first loaded X-Plane, then loaded into the airport / scenario, then started the Oculus software, then reloaded Oculus from within the Oculus software (I had to do this before 11.5b1), then switched to VR in X-Plane. A lot, but it works.

My experience was that performance in Vulkan was much better than in VR for 11.41. While I still kept objects one notch below max, I flew with shadows on, full reflections, max textures, HDR and had reasonable frame rates with … importantly … few stutters. When anti-aliasing gets too high, though, it gets stuttery, so I stayed around 2x and sometimes 4x. I also found that in non-HDR I only had one eye working in VR. Asynchronous Spacewarp doesn’t seem to help smoothness, and super sampling makes things a bit sharper but comes at a performance price. As some others have noted, the GPS screens seem more blurry than usual in this beta. Today I’ll get to settings that I consider optimal, but overall the experience in VR was great and a significant improvement.

Today is going to be testing day, and I’ve already warned Mrs. Glideslope that I’ll be in “The Hangar,” which is what we now call the closet in which the sim sits, most of the day. Also, with us under stay-at-home orders here in Florida I’m no longer traveling for work or flying in the real world, so I have more time for the sim — and need to spend time in it to remain at least basically proficient in checklists and IFR procedures for my real-world flying. All this is to say that I expect to be streaming more in the coming days. On that note, my streams have been very unreliable ever since I upgraded to the 1080ti GPU. I think I’ve finally resolved those problems (I’ve under-clocked it a bit, and fiddled with some other things), and in a test stream the other day flew for an hour without crashing. So let’s hope that continues. Here is that post-bug-squashing test flight from the other day, and it showcases some of Orbx TE Florida as well. Note that it took a while to get the audio levels right (it’s been a while since I’ve streamed).

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