Before I start this review. Please allow me to get the fine print out of the way.
The product I am reviewing was purchased by me and for my own personal use. I receive absolutely no compensation of any form (cash, credit, discounts, promises) for reviewing this product. I have not contacted, nor have I been contacted by the vendor to provide this product review. The opinions expressed (good or bad) are my own, your mileage may vary.
OK…with the legal disclaimer out of the way, allow me to get started. Like many of you, I purchased the QualityWings 787 for P3D v4 within minutes of it being released. I’ve personally been anxious about this aircraft release from the time I first learned of it. However, I’ve often been critical of QualityWings for their decision to first release this aircraft for FSX and FSX: SE. But I’m also man enough to admit that I’m biased as I’ve not thought much about FSX since the early days of P3D v3.x and certainly have no interest in FSX now that the 64 bit P3D v4 is available and performing so well.
Study Level She’s Not
A question which is popping up just about everywhere has to do with whether or not the QW787 is a study level aircraft similar to any of the PMDG or FSLabs aircraft. For the record, I don’t currently own (nor will I ever) any FSLabs aircraft. The reason for this can be summed up here. But I do own the PMDG Boeing 737, 747 and 777 and enjoy flying each and every one of them. I can certainly confirm the QW787 can’t be compared to the likes of the PMDG Boeing lineup, but she’s still a joy to fly.
Study vs Quality
I make no bones about the fact that I’m NOT a real world pilot. I suppose some might wonder how I can spend over 35 years flying computer based sims, enjoy them passionately and not have any interest in real world aviation. Simply put, when I was younger and had more time, I didn’t have the money. A decade or so ago, I had the money…but just not enough time. Now days…well, as I’m older the cost of learning to fly is much more expensive and I suppose I just have a lot of other interests in my life. At least this is my story and I’m going to stick to it.
While others may see PMDG as a developer of study level aircraft, I see them as developers of quality simulation aircraft. Some folks might not see the difference between these two things…but I certainly do. As an example, I really have no idea if the PMDG 737 performs like the real thing. I believe it does as that’s what others say…but my only real experience comes from riding a few thousand miles a year in one for work related trips. Likewise, I have no idea if the PMDG 747 performs like the real thing. But from my point of view in my nice business class seat, I’ll just order another glass of wine and I’m a happy passenger.
The point I’m making here is while I do enjoy the level of detail and the tasks which must be carried out to be able to simulate flight in a PMDG 737, 747 or 777….I really have nothing to compare that to other than the fact that I appreciate the level of quality which goes into a PMDG aircraft. But I’m starting to digress and this article is reading more like a review of PMDG so let me get back on track. The QualityWings 787 Dreamliner at this point in time, is not study level and it’s also not on the same level of quality as that of the PMDG models I own. But I believe it can be.
I honestly can’t remember the last time I purchased a flight sim add-on aircraft which was 100% bug free on day of release. Most likely the reason I can’t remember is because in the history of flight simulation (and I have just about been around the entire time) no aircraft that I’m aware of has ever been released 100% bug free. Yes, the QW787 has a few bugs. Most that I’ve discovered I would classify as minor annoyances, but a few certainly qualify to be labeled and identified as major. Fortunately, I’ve personally not discovered anything I would label as a show-stopper. Here are a few of the bugs I’ve discovered.
ActiveSky and WX Radar CTD – When using both ActiveSky for P3D v4 (ASP4) and using the onboard wx radar features of the QW787, a CTD or Crash to Desktop can occur. While some may identify this as a show-stopper bug, the CTD can be avoided by simply not using the wx radar features. QW’s are aware of this and working on a fix. This is the only bug which has caused me any issues which I couldn’t overcome.
VNAV Issues – Some folks are experiencing various issues related to VNAV mostly during the descent.
LNAV Issues – Consisting of the aircraft attempting turns too early and/or overshooting turns altogether.
Altitude Constraints on SID/STARS – I’ve experienced both while flying the QW787.
If I’m not mistaken, Qualitywings have recognized these issues as bugs and are working on a fix. As of a few days ago, the ETA for the hotfix was in approx. 2 weeks.
I’m extremely happy with the purchase and I look forward to the hotfix patch which hopefully will resolve all the issues. I’ve spent several hours flying this beautiful aircraft on mostly short hops of no more than 2-3 hours. The QW787 Dreamliner is a new favorite in my hangar. I’ll leave you with a few recent images of this beautiful aircraft from some of my recent flights. I’ll also return with an updated post once the hotfix has been released. But if you are looking to add a Boeing 787 Dreamliner to your fleet for P3D v4, then look no further than the QualityWings version. I believe you’ll be pleased you did.
Until next time…
Ladies, Gentlemen and Children of all ages who absolutely love everything avgeek, the wait is over. Yes, QualityWings released their Prepar3d v4 version of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner on Wednesday. Earlier in the week, news broke that QW had lifted the NDA (non-disclosure agreement) with their beta test team and images, videos and discussions began appearing all over the interwebz. The assumption was the QW787 release was imminent.
It’s been a long and winding road
According to my blog site search engine, the first mention of the QW 787 Dreamliner in any of my writings was back on 22 June 2017. Later in 2017 from a hotel room in Orlando, I followed up with my comments regarding the fact QW opted to release the 787 for FSX (boxed) and FSX: Steam Edition before any version of Prepar3D. This was somewhat of a head scratcher for me especially since P3D v4 had been out for about 5 months at this point and other aircraft developers (PMDG, A2A and others) had managed to release their aircraft which were originally developed for FSX and older versions of P3D with P3D v4 installers. But oh well…we would just have to be patient.
The Un-official Race
I’ll admit that over the years I’ve been slightly critical of QualityWings. I’m not the only one that has wondered “what the heck are these guys thinking” when it comes to the decisions they’ve made. I often speculated just how long it would take them to release their 787 for P3D v4 and even felt it would be well after Aerosoft released their Airbus A318/A319 & A320/A321 product for v4. I guess it’s a good thing that I didn’t actually wager any money against this bet, as I would have lost. The guys at QualityWings have beat Aerosoft by country mile. As I recently discussed, the Aerosoft busses won’t be released until 26 June. So congratulations QW.
Not a First Impressions Article
I’m going to wait a few days before I write my official “first impressions” piece. I feel I need some more time in the aircraft before I’m able to write a fair and balanced piece. But I’ll certainly share two screenshots and a bit of commentary from my inaugural flight last evening. I plan to spend some of this upcoming long, holiday weekend in the Dreamliner and will have a much better sense of just how good (or bad) this aircraft is. But I can tell you this much. My initial impression of this is QualityWings have lived up to using the word “Quality” in their brand. I’m impressed.
Cruising at FL360 enroute from KDFW to KDEN. As I’ve discussed before, I really don’t have the time to fly a lot of long-haul flights. So while the Dreamliner truly was designed for long-haul and even ultra long-haul flights, most of my use will most likely be fictional flights of no more than 2-3 hours in length.
The “Sporty” style of the B787 Flight Deck is impressive. While this aircraft shouldn’t be compared to a study level PMDG aircraft, it truly isn’t bad. There’s still enough work that needs to be done to ready this aircraft for flight to keep me 100% interested. I’m fairly confident, the QW 787 Dreamliner will get used often.
One Small Issue
Ok…well, perhaps it really isn’t that small. Especially considering I did experience a CTD (crash to desktop) on my inaugural flight. One flight, one CTD…I guess one could say it might be a bigger issue. But after reaching cruise altitude, I was messing about with the weather radar features and while doing so experienced the CTD. This was the first CTD I’ve ever experienced in P3D v4 and certainly the first CTD on the new Beast v5 gaming machine. But I see absolutely no reason to panic. I’m fairly certain this product will be like most others….there will be a few quirks that will get resolved in an update patch/fix soon.
The good news, I run auto-save via FSUIPC. FSUIPC performs an auto-save of my flight, complete with all aircraft configuration settings every 15 minutes. I was able to re-launch P3D and resume my flight (just like nothing ever happened) from the latest save.
OK…well I must get to work now. I quickly wrote this piece while easing into my Thursday morning in the office. The coffee is gone and I must go find more or today will be a long and difficult day.
Until next time….I’ll be dreaming of my next Dreamliner flight.
Hello to all. Life has been quite busy for me the past few months. I must apologize to my readers as in typical fashion, my busy schedule has had an impact on my blogging. It’s been several months since I posted an article to my blog and for that I must apologize. I had the best intentions of writing more and of course writing about flight simulation. After all, it was flight sim which caused me to create this blog site over 10 years ago.
As I write this, I’m sitting in my hotel room in Orlando, Florida where I’m on my third business trip in the past five weeks. I just got back from dinner (I’m stuffed), turned on the TV (boring) and decided to check my email. One of my long time readers messaged me asking if I had spent any time with the newly released QualityWings 787 Dreamliner and what my impressions were. Well…unfortunately, I had to answer his question with a short answer of no, followed by some additional comments I’m going to share here.
I believe the last time I wrote about the QualityWings 787 was back in June of this year. At that time I had read a Facebook message stating the aircraft was expected to be released in the Summer of 2017. Unfortunately, QualityWings missed their mark slightly. The season of summer came to an end on Friday, September 22nd and the QW Dreamliner was released in early October. Now I realize I’m being a bit cheeky with pointing this out….but details matter right? OK….perhaps not. The good news is the much anticipated QualityWings 787 Dreamliner is available, but the bad news…it’s only available for FSX!
Of course, we knew this would be the case and I even touched on that in my previously mentioned June blog post. QW explains this decision is due to the fact the 787 has been in development longer than Prepar3D v4 (or even v3 or v2) had been in existence. While I understand this fact, I must also mention that I’m of the opinion that QualityWings really have never fully embraced the Prepar3d P3D platform. While it is true they did FINALLY update their Boeing 757 for P3D v2.5…but their treatment of P3D could be likened to that of a “red headed step-child”.
While I fully realize many flight sim enthusiasts still fly FSX and FSX Steam Edition, surprisingly there appears to still be a large number of FS9 users….but I’m of the opinion that FSX (in all forms) is just simply dead. But I must again say that I don’t blame or fault QualityWings for releasing the Dreamliner for FSX. But I’m curious how long it will take them to bring this wonderful aircraft to P3D v4?
I know some might say, “but the QW development team is small” and “these things take time”. I get all that. But I will remind everyone that PMDG was able to update their older Boeing 737 NGX which was released in the 2011 timeframe (if I’m not mistaken). So in theory, the same can be said of PMDG that they began development on an aircraft prior to Prepar3D, but was still able to update/release the NGX for P3D v4 within a few weeks of release.
So….to answer my readers question. Unfortunately, when Prepar3D v4 was released earlier this year I made the decision to embrace it as my flight sim platform and I’ve not looked back to earlier P3D versions or FSX since and I don’t plan to.
But having said that. Just as soon as this beautiful aircraft is released for P3D v4.x, I will purchase it and I’m sure I’ll have more than a few things to say about it here.
I’m exhausted after a long day and ready to turn in. I’ll post this sometime on Wednesday or Thursday. So until next time….Happy Simming!
Could the wait be almost over? It certainly appears so. Looking back through my archives of blog articles, it appears the first time I mentioned the QualityWings Boeing 787 Dreamliner was way back in February of 2013, so yea….over four years ago. What I said back then (and I quote myself) “QualityWings Simulations currently has a Boeing 787 Dreamliner in development and if it is anything like their 757, I’ll certainly make the purchase pending it has the upgraded batteries”. Of course, the battery remark was referencing the issues Boeing had been experiencing during that timeframe on the real Dreamliner aircraft.
Anyway…according to this Facebook post directly from QualityWings, this awesome aircraft is expected to roll out of the QW Hangar sometime in the Summer of 2017. This truly is great news for those who are Boeing fans (like me) and are looking for a little variety.
FSX Rollout First
I suppose the news stating that initially the B787 will only be released for FSX doesn’t come as a big surprise. After all, with a development spanning over four years and their initial reluctance to support P3D….those still on FSX will get to have the first level of fun. But don’t fear…the QW787 will also be supported on FSX-SE (Steam Edition) and Lockheed Martin’s Prepar3D v4. Unfortunately there is no mention if they also plan to support the older P3D v3 (or even v2 for that matter). I would certainly hope QW would at least consider releasing and supporting it for P3D v3.
QualityWings have announced their QW787 will be sold separately for FSX (including SE) and P3D. This is become more and more common with add-on developers and the price will be $69.95 USD for each platform. Purchasing the product for FSX will not guarantee operation in P3D and vice versa. Finally, the QW787 will be sold through Flight1 and will include a 30 day refund policy.
More about the Dreamliner
Boeing announced the development of the 787 Dreamliner in 2003 and the first test flight occurred in late 2009 with the first production model being introduced in 2011. The Dreamliner is a long-haul, mid-size widebody, twin engine jet liner. It offers variants seating anywhere from 242 to 335 passengers in a typical three-class configuration. The Dreamliner is approx. 20% more fuel efficient than the Boeing 767 which it was intended to replace. Airlines are using the Dreamliner for both long-haul and shorter high-density routes.
Saying Goodbye to an old friend
With my move to Prepar3D v4 (and not looking back), it appears I’ll need to say goodbye to my old friend the QualityWings 757 as QW has no plans to make it available in P3D v4. At one point in time, the QW757 was my favorite aircraft. But much like the Level-D 767, they both really began to show their age in a post FSX world. Fortunately, according to the latest news from FSELITE, the folks behind the popular Level-D 767 have finally announced their 757-200 which is reported to be approx. 80% ready and in beta. Of course, time will tell just when and how this will be released. Rumors are also going around that Level-D is looking at what it would take to get their 767 into P3D v4.
My Hangar Needs
When (if) the QW787 is available for Prepar3D v4, it’ll fit in nicely with my PMDG Boeing 737NGX (800/900 and 600/700), Boeing 747-400 (Queen of the Skies II) and the wonderful Boeing 777 (200 and 300 variants).
As I just don’t have time for many long-haul flights, I would suspect I’ll use the Dreamliner in the shorter-haul high density passenger route configuration (2-4 hour) both in North America and Europe and continue using the 777 and 747 to simulate freighter operations across North America and Europe. My 737NGX will continue to be my workhorse.
Until next time…