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ss+(2015-11-16+at+11.18.44)

Introduction

Imaginesim’s newest version of Atlanta has been one of the most looked-forward to releases of the year.  Like many I was eager to know if Imaginesim could make a better looking and better optimized version of their older Atlanta.  The package was released first for FSX, and a few weeks later the P3D version was released.  I’ll be taking a look at the P3D version.

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Hartsfield Jackson Atlanta International Airport is one of the busiest airports in the world, and has traded with O’Hare Airport in Chicago as the busiest airport in the world.  The airport owes that title to it being Delta’s biggest hub, in addition to being a focus city for Southwest.

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Installation

Installation is simple.  Confirm your P3D folder installation (you may have to add it to your library yourself if you use v3) activate, and install.  The airport also comes with a config tool that allows users to add/remove items for optimization or visuals.  Options include 3D grass, industrial buildings, trees, and terminal lights.  For the review, I ticked all of the checkboxes.

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Manual

The manual is pretty good.  It contains optimization tips, an FAQ, an airport diagram, installation instructions, and docking guidance (may as well throw it in here, those docking guidance systems aren’t present in the real world.)

Daytime

The airport looks pretty good at daytime.  There’s a noticeable increase in quality in the modeling and textures from the 2012 version.  Imaginesim got rid of their static aircraft in this version, which helps performance a bit, and as we know Imaginesim have struggled in that department in the past.  More on that topic later, though.  The density of airport vehicles seems to be a bit hit-and-miss.  Some areas are quite covered, and others are a barren wasteland.

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The airport is certainly good as far as visuals go.  Anyone who has this and the old 2012 version will definitely see the difference in the way the airport looks.

Surroundings

The surroundings are very well done.  Several buildings around the airport are modeled very well, and cars appear in the parking lots by them too.

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Nighttime

It’s okay.  There’s no effect that really gives you a “location” of where the lights are coming from as far as floodlights are concerned.  The lit ground textures leave a bit to be desired, the same goes for the runway and taxiway lights.  The lights don’t really blend in with the surroundings either.  The airport is well illuminated though, as it should be.

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Performance

I flew from San Francisco to Atlanta with Flightbeam’s scenery on the other end.  At most airports in the NGX cockpit I can get framerates in the high 20s and low 30s.  As I was approaching Atlanta, my frames dipped down to an average of about 15 in the NGX.  I landed and my framerates hovered between 18 and 22, still on the very low end of what I get.  As I got to the dense airports on the ramp, my frames once again dipped down to around 15.  Needless to say, I was disappointed.  Imaginesim said that they were taking steps to optimize Atlanta better than their other airports.  Unfortunately, that does not seem to be the truth.  It’s better by a few frames and certainly is a step in the right direction than their previous efforts, but I was still let down.  On the plus side, the airport seems to have a light VAS footprint.

Pricetag

Atlanta costs $33 USD.  That’s more than Flightbeam charges for KSFO HD, and I definitely think KSFO is far better done than Atlanta.  It’s also about what FSDT charges for their airports, and in my opinion all of them have better performance and most of them look better than KATL.  It also costs more than all of FlyTampa’s airports, and all of those are better as well in my opinion.  I think this airport would be worth buying if it was $20-$23.  Unless you’re a big fan of Delta or Southwest, have KATL as a regular destination of yours, or have some sentimental tie to the city of Atlanta, this airport isn’t worth the price tag, and I’d even question it for any of the reasons listed above.

Conclusion

I was excited for Atlanta.  KATL 2016 definitely looks better than the 2012 version, and it runs a bit better too.  The problem is that it isn’t enough of an upgrade to pay full price again for the 2016 version.  The high price tag also doesn’t feel justified, given the competition in the same price range.

My Specs

P3D v3.0

Intel Core i7-4790k

EVGA GTX 980 4GB

16GB RAM

 

Review by Daniel Everman

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