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Eric C

Any Thoughts or Opinions on AutoStar X?

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Eric C    207

Hey guys and gals, I heard about AutoStar X on fsxtimes.com and it's supposed to be a program that creates more brighter stars at night in fsx. Was wondering if anyone recommends it before I install. I've already backed up the stars.dat file. Thanks again

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Eric C    207

Yup!

I use it, it changes your night sky in FSX thats for sure, makes it looks really awesome too. Its a complicated little program, so read the manual and have fun!

Will do, thanks for the reply jordan :)

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Eric C    207

And dont forget to whack some shots up Eric :D

cheers

Iain

You know I'm good for at least one of them my friend, maybe two or three....haha ;)

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mra    3

Never heard of it before but that is one of the great things about this forum. the constant exchange of information about our hobby. I will be heading over to fsxtimes.com after I sign out of the forum.

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Iain Emms    3,553

Any luck with this Eric and what it looks like, it sounds a bit complicated but how have you faired so far with it my friend.

cheers

Iain

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Eric C    207

Any luck with this Eric and what it looks like, it sounds a bit complicated but how have you faired so far with it my friend.

cheers

Iain

I've been all over learning more switches and procedures on the NGX all day my friend, haha. I'm about to try it now for real this time :) I'll report back.

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Iain Emms    3,553

Yes Eric i know what you mean about the NGX to be honest ive given up learning about all of them too much for me, i look foward to see what you think.

cheers

Iain

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Eric C    207

So I backed up the original stars file, excited, looking forward to it and all, and then I took a glance over the word document manual and realized there are more rules and setting changes for my own good, haha. :) It may be cool, but I was looking for something basic like the hd moon update, where all that required was backup up the 15 original files and replacing the new HD files in the same fsx folder. Again, it may be very good, but when the word document said things like...

"Run FSX. Set the date to March 10, 1976 and set the time to early dawn"

"Note: after performing a small Windows update I found that the Run FSX function failed to work if there was a space in the FSX path. Nice one, Microsoft. That Windows update made my installation more similar to DOS in this respect.

When this works you could experiment by turning on other options such as planet names, celestial circles etc."

"But if you go to the northern hemisphere you'll have to exit FSX and run AutoStar again with this option un-ticked."

"Don't click on the small cross at the top right to exit, as this will not save the ini file and you could lose your settings."

I could go on and on, but at the end of the day, I thought I was maybe going to get the "shockwave" stars effect, that's all, not a fsx version of a planetarium. I'll have to pass on this, but just opens up the door and idea for a designer/utility developer to make a 5 to 10 dollar shockwave/FSWC like plug in that is simpler, and makes the sky fuller, brighter, and more realistic. Nothing overly complicated as AutoStar X is, "less is more". If any talented individuals take this idea on, I'll be glad to test it :)

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Iain Emms    3,553

I will give this a miss Eric i thought from what ive read it was very complicated to set up and use, then in the end you could end up buggering your fsx up so i will pass as well my friend.

cheers

Iain

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Rob Newman    286

I'm having a go at my end... I think the difficulty lies mostly in the manual being very "wordy"... Once you understand what options do what, it's half way intuitive.

Strikes me that the main issue it has is that you need to run it often of you want to see the accurate planetary positions... It creates the positions of the planets based on a date which is then set in stone in the stars.dat file... so the planet positions are then set as is is on that specific date...

I'll put up some before and after shots...

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Rob Newman    286

Here's a comparison...

Very subtle difference, but certainly an improvement! Almost double the stars and also the planets... The constellations seem accurate and the star colours are much better and reflect the true value. The data comes from the Smithsonian Institute website so I'm confident it is accurate.

Wish it would improve the visibility of the Milky Way, but I'll take it!

And by the way, the whole AutostarX program does just one thing... It spits out a "stars.dat" file which FSX uses for the stars... Now that I have created it, I would be happy to send it on to anybody who wants it... It just overwrites the file already in the root FSX folder...

Posted Image

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Matthew Kane    256

Ah Man....Just when I thought it was safe to go back in the water.

Now I am getting sucked into another FSX Time Wasting Addon...Thanks Guys...LOL

Cheers :D

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Eric C    207

Here's a comparison...

Very subtle difference, but certainly an improvement! Almost double the stars and also the planets... The constellations seem accurate and the star colours are much better and reflect the true value. The data comes from the Smithsonian Institute website so I'm confident it is accurate.

Wish it would improve the visibility of the Milky Way, but I'll take it!

And by the way, the whole AutostarX program does just one thing... It spits out a "stars.dat" file which FSX uses for the stars... Now that I have created it, I would be happy to send it on to anybody who wants it... It just overwrites the file already in the root FSX folder...

Posted Image

Nice comparison Rob and I agree that the main issue was that the manual was too wordy. A lot of us dread the thought of having a corrupt FSX and having to re-install everything. With all those ifs in the manual i just didn't think it was worth the risk, but if it's just that .dat file you said and if that's all that's needed to make it work, then I'll try it. I'll send you a PM with my email. Thanks.

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Bills511    47

Hey guys and gals, I heard about AutoStar X on fsxtimes.com and it's supposed to be a program that creates more brighter stars at night in fsx. Was wondering if anyone recommends it before I install. I've already backed up the stars.dat file. Thanks again

Funny you brought this up Eric. I discovered this program a couple months ago but didn't pay a great deal of attention to it until now.

This time I did the import SAO catalogue and convert stars tool to make sure I had the latest star catalogue which was dated Oct. 2007. Also played around with some of the settings. And I love the results.

I'll definitely be doing more night flying now.

Click on image for better view

Orcas Island 8-12-12 5:00 AM

0.50 zoom factor. Auto planet brightness turned off. 50.ipg

Orions belt is seen right above nose of aircraft.

Posted Image

1.00 zoom factor. Auto planet brightness turned off. 100.jpg

Venus lower arrow and Jupiter upper arrow

Posted Image

1.00 zoom factor. Auto planet brightness turned on. Planets don't show as well.

Posted Image

Big Dipper 1.00 zoom factor.

Posted Image

Default FSX. Orions Belt is not as accurate. And no planets.

Posted Image

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