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Introduction

Aerosoft, a large vendor well known for making everything from aircraft to scenery. Aerosoft return once again with a new version of Zurich International Airport or LSZH. Zurich, also known as Kloten Airport, is the largest international airport of Switzerland and the principal hub of Swiss International Air Lines. The airport has an interesting layout with three runways, two that cross over each other and one on the western end. For most of the day and in most conditions, runway 14 is used for landings and runways 16 and 28 are used for takeoffs, although different patterns are used early morning and in the evenings.

Installation

The airport can be bought from the Official Aerosoft store, surprisingly cheaper than expected. It sells for €21.81 EUR, but if you were a previous owner of the former Mega Airport Zurich 2012, you are entitled to get nearly a 50% discount, leaving the price for previous owners to become €10.88. Just enter your serial number during checkout to get your discount. The package comes with one installer, which is compatible with FSX, FSX:SE and Prepar3D. Like all Aerosoft installers, this one is straight forward and easy. Just enter your email and serial as the installer runs, and you’re good to go.

Manual

The manual is on par with most other developers and scenery addons. It comes in two languages, English and German, and has in depth information regarding settings and config tools. It also has full information regarding frequencies (ILS, VOR etc) and an in depth installation guide. Along with that you get a separate PDF called charts, that has 68 pages worth of charts. Departure, Arrival, Ground, ILS. It has everything. Overall, the manual is great.

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Now the Airport….

As a huge fan of Zurich, I was keen to see whether Aerosoft did better than FSDreamteam in regards to performance, quality and detail. The airport is the latest version we have. It is made with quality, but you pay a big price in the performance category. Aerosoft’s has the new A380 gates, which older versions don’t have. The airport is very good, and the modelling and textures seem to be decent.  A step up from the cartoonish modelling and textures seen in V1. It was pretty good for the price paid, but there is a con.  Just to briefly mention, won’t go to much into detail as that is covered further down. – AES is required for moving jetways, which for P3D users means no jetways will be docking to your aircraft with Aerosoft’s Zurich. For now, enjoy the screenshots as one of my favorite European Destinations shows off its brand new look.

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Nearby Area

Not much is seen in the surrounding area, but you do see some custom textures around the runway entry lights, which look nice coming into. They have included fences and signs which just boost the environment and add extra realism. They have modeled AI traffic for cars and firetrucks which are seen throughout the airport area and the surrounding area.

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Zurich at Night

Zurich at night is just beautiful. This is one of the strongest points of Aerosofts Zuirch V2. The night lighting is just drop dead beautiful. Definitely better than the FSDreamteam version of Zurich and Aerosoft’s older version. If you love flying at night, and enjoy the volumetric lights we have seen with FlyTampa and FlightBeam, then by all means. It’s a must. Enjoy the beautiful shots of the Swiss capital at night.

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Aerosoft Zurich vs FSDreamteam

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The Question everyone has been asking since the release of Zurich V2, shall I move to Aerosoft Zurich V2 or stay with FSDreamteam? Well, the Aerosoft version has better night lighting for sure. It’s more up to date in terms of AFCADS, and has the new A380 gates, whilst as the FSDreamteam version has better modeling and possibly textures, it’s out dated and the night lighting is not the best. Performance wise, FSDreamteam has Aerosoft beat out. FSDreamteam did a much better job with FPS and VAS usage. The Aerosoft one is some sort of a killer. The Frames are decent, averaged at 30 most of the time, but VAS would be 85% spawning onto the active runway at Zurich with the 777. The FSDreamteam version has moving jetways, where as Aerosoft require AES, and if you use P3D that’s not an option. Is it worth the upgrade then? If you fly in and out of Zurich a lot and you find Zuirch is an airport that you must have, and want an up to date version, then yes. It is well worth the upgrade. But if you’re happy with your current version of Zurich, and don’t even fly out of Zurich, our word of advice is to stay with your current option. Althogh we have hopes Aerosoft will release a hotfix soon to fix high VAS usage, as frame rates are generraly ok.

Features:

The finished development condition results in some new features:

  • Newly created buildings and objects with lots of 3D details, partly high resolution 2K textures with rendered shadows and lighting.
  • New transparent boarding bridges with glass sides at every gate.
  • Updated taxiways and parking positions, as creating parking positions for the Airbus A380 changed other positions and moved lots of taxiway markings.
  • Parking position E67 at Dock E now includes a separate, elevated boarding bridge
  • Static Airbus A380 of Emirates Airline, parking at Gate E67 (optional)
  • Terminal 2 is currently being rebuilt and set to be finished by the end of 2015 – we already completely finished the terminal for this scenery
  • Enhanced Apron P with additional parking positions
  • Jet engine test site with new, large noise absorption hall
  • The entrances to terminals 1 and 2 are currently being rebuilt – we already completely finished the reconstruction for this scenery, including a new roofing

Additional features:

  • Completely created scenery of Airport Zurich for FSX ACC-SP2-SE and Prepar3D, state of late 2015
  • Detailed representation of the airport
  • Photo realistic ground textures based on aerial images (0,5m/pixel)
  • Seasonal colouring of ground and vegetation
  • All buildings and airport facilities
  • Photo real textures for buildings, vehicles etc.
  • True to original navigation systems (ILS, VOR/DME, NDB, ATIS)
  • Complete taxiway and runway signage
  • “High speed taxiways”, allowing for exiting the runway at high speeds
  • Great night effects (baked textures)
  • Animated radar systems and wind hoses
  • Animated vehicle traffic at and around the airport (AESLite), for FSX ACC-SP2 with “Intelliscene”
  • ADGS – Aircraft Docking Guidance Systems
  • True to original runway and taxiway lighting
  • Traffic routes with ground traffic signage
  • Optimised for good performance (frame rate)
  • Optimised AFDs for different landing directions on the crossing runways
  • Compatible with Airport Enhancement Services (AES)
  • Compatible with default AI traffic as well as AI traffic add-ons (e.g. MyTraffic X)
  • Compatible with Switzerland Pro X and Ultimate Terrain Europe
  • Manual in English/German and up to date charts

Update:

If you are owner of the former Mega Airport Zurich 2012, you are entitled to get a close to 50% discount (update price: 10,88€ plus tax, if applicable). Just enter your serial number (box or download) in the order process in our download-shop (above your payment option).

Compatibility:

Works with ORBX FTX Global, OpenLC Europe and has full support for the following platforms:

  • Flight Simulator X (FSX)
  • Flight Simulator X: Steam Edition (FSX:SE)
  • Prepar3D V2+ (P3D V2.X)

Performance

Ahhh, Performance. What everyone wants to know. Aerosoft Zurich v2, doesn’t perform the best compared to the competition from FSDreamteam. VAS usage is significantly higher, and FPS looking away from terminals was generally okay. But looking at the terminal, they dropped as low as the low twenties. Final approach frames were not the best either, but kept in the stable twenty region. Sitting at the gate they were a stable 30+. The modelling and textures have not been optimized the very best as looking at them from the active runway you see significant stuters and fps drops. VAS Usage is horrible. Like mentioned earlier 85% spawning into the active runway with the 777. We did some test flights with the A320, 737 and 777 from Vienna. We landed at Zurich with the A320 first and finished off with 92% VAS, the 737 was at point of death region at 99%, and lastly the 777 did not even make it on the ground. Aerosoft did inlcuded two tools, one disables traffic and the other downsizes textures. Doing this most defenitly helps and reduces the VAS usage. If they do not work, remove the .BGL files manually.

Conclusion:

If you love Zurich and feel it’s a must have airport, and want the up to date version, then the Aerosoft v2 is for you.  If you care more about performance, then stick with your FSDreamteam version. But Aerosoft Zurich does seem more eye candy, especially at night. No moving jetways, which once again is not the best. Our overall impressions are pretty good, and we hope Aerosoft fix the bad VAS usage and this airport will be fantastic.

Videos:

Most Products come with Official Videos showcasing the product. Below we’ve attached some videos for you to watch, just in case you prefer them over screenshots. Videos by: (Jeroen Doorman)

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