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FS-Recorder Tutorial, Parts One and Two! :: Archived
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JG300-Stoopy
Power User

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Joined: Jan 04, 2005
Posts: 5832
Location: Group W bench
PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2007 5:57 pm
Post subject: FS-Recorder Tutorial, Parts One and Two!

In response to more than one comment regarding the possibility of a tutorial on using FS-Recorder, below is my best effort in providing a walk-through on using this fine freeware utility for FS9 and FSX. If you're not familiar with what this great tool does and can be used for, well, I can't think of a better way to demonstrate that other than the below, so enjoy!

I've been using it for a long time now and have a lot to say about it but will TRY to be brief and not too wordy. I do have some pointers here at the start that I believe should be said, however.

There also are a LOT of screenshots (59 in all) just to fully demonstrate all the fine points, etc, so I'm going to break this up into different multi-part posts and make them "sticky" so different major steps can be easily viewed without having to load all those images at once.

Here in Part One, we're going to review some basic yet important settings of FSR and then fly - and record, for playback as an AI plane later - a simple, easy flight from an airfield, circle around a nearby point of interest, and then land. Then we'll fly in formation with that recording, and record that flight too. By the end there will be a total of 3 aircraft recorded in the flight, all flying in a close "Vee" formation to give a just a small idea of what you can do with this to make some interesting screenies - as well as have a heck of a lot of fun flying in formation, or group aerobatics, or simulated dogfights, or whatever. Let’s get started!



To follow along and do this you'll need FS-Recorder of course, which is freeware and can be downloaded from Matthias Neusinger's excellent website - go to "Downloads" and download the flavor of your choice, version 1.31 for FS9 or version 1.3 for FSX. Don't forget to register in the forums and thank Matthias for his excellent contribution to the community!

fs-recorder.net/

It's a self-installer so no tutorial help needed there, other than to point out that once installed, the FS-Recorder options discussed below will be in a new drop-down "Recorder" menu inside Flight Sim, just next to the "Modules" menu. Install it and get ready to rock!



Step One: Some important settings for FS-Recorder and FS9/FSX:

First - I like to make sure that Prop and Engine effects, as well as smoke effects, are turned on for both playback and record, otherwise you won't see the prop turn or see smoke effects if you use 'em. Also make sure the Recording and Playback status are turned on to be displayed, at least for now.

Also,%20you%20can%20go%20to%20\"Recorder%20Settings\"%20on%20that%20page%20and%20make%20sure%20the%20recorder%20is%20set%20to%20record%20every%201/4%20second.%20%20You%20can%20do%201/8%20or%201/2%20second%20but%201/4%20seems%20to%20work%20just%20fine. Last%20important%20setting%20is%20to%20make%20sure%20that%20Aircraft%20Collision%20detection%20is%20turned%20off%20in%20FS,%20and%20this%20is%20important%20if%20you%20plan%20to%20do%20formation%20flying%20since%20the%20playback%20aircraft%20act%20as%20AI%20\"Scenery\"%20and%20you'll%20collide%20with%20them%20as%20if%20they%20are%20scenery,%20not%20just%20planes...so%20turning%20off%20aircraft%20collisions%20won't%20help%20you.%20Gotta%20turn%20off%20all%20collision%20detection: ONE%20MORE%20THING:%20%20You%20need%20SOLID%20and%20CONSISTENT%20frame%20rates%20to%20ensure%20smooth%20recording.%20%20NOTE%20that%20this%20doesn't%20mean%20you%20need%20HIGH%20frame%20rates,%20you%20just%20want%20them%20to%20be%20consistent.%20%2020%20FPS%20is%20just%20fine%20for%20flying%20and%20recording.%20%20I%20cannot%20suggest,%20strongly%20enough,%20that%20you%20set%20your%20frame%20rate%20to%2020%20%20and/or%20temporarily%20dial%20back%20your%20graphic%20settings%20when%20recording.%20%20If%20your%20system%20\"skips\"%20frames%20during%20the%20recording,%20the%20effect%20will%20be%20that%20the%20aircraft%20will%20jump%20around%20a%20bit%20and%20\"skip%20ahead\"....which%20you%20don't%20want.%20%20When%20you%20are%20just%20playing%20recordings%20back,%20then%20you%20can%20go%20hog-wild%20and%20crank%20the%20settings%20and%20frame%20rates%20up.%20%20So%20you'll%20see%20the%20examples%20are%20all%20done%20at%2020FPS%20and%20it%20didn't%20impact%20my%20ability%20to%20fly%20and%20stay%20in%20formation%20in%20the%20least.%20%20This%20is%20important%20and%20worth%20doing.%20 STEP%20TWO:%20%20Let's%20record%20a%20flight!!! For%20this%20example%20I%20picked%20an%20airfield%20at%20random%20(somewhere%20in%20Pennsylvania)%20and%20used%20the%20Cessna%20182%20to%20keep%20it%20simple.%20%20But%20the%20first%20flight%20is%20the%20most%20important%20of%20course%20since%20it%20drives%20the%20rest%20of%20the%20remaining%20flights%20so%20PLAN%20your%20flight%20well!%20%20I%20like%20to%20start%20on%20the%20ground%20and%20do%20a%20group%20takeoff,%20so%20that's%20where%20we'll%20begin.%20%20 It%20turns%20out%20there's%20a%20nuclear%20powerplant%20just%20beyond%20the%20airfield%20I%20picked,%20so%20the%20plan%20will%20be%20to%20take%20off,%20depart%20out%20straight%20ahead,%20climb%20to%20about%201500-1600%20feet%20and%20then%20when%20near%20the%20powerplant%20make%20a%20GENTLE%20left%20turn%20followed%20by%20a%20GENTLE%20right%20semi-circle%20around%20the%20cooling%20towers%20to%20turn%20around%20and%20set%20up%20for%20a%20group%20formation%20landing%20at%20another%20nearby%20airfield.%20%20The%20cooling%20towers%20in%20the%20background%20will%20make%20for%20an%20interesting%20bit%20of%20scenery%20for%20a%20screenie,%20and%20with%20luck%20I%20might%20be%20able%20to%20think%20of%20a%20fitting%20caption.%20%20:) The%20planning%20is%20an%20important%20step%20but%20so%20are%20some%20details%20that%20the%20first%20flight%20should%20adhere%20to,%20and%20believe%20me,%20these%20are%20golden%20rules%20I've%20found%20out%20the%20hard%20way%20that%20really%20must%20be%20followed: Rule%201:%20%20Set%20up%20a%20SIMPLE%20forward%20view%20(to%20keep%20your%20frame%20rates%20consistent)%20and%20DO%20NOT%20spend%20the%20flight%20panning%20around%20or%20switching%20views.%20%20Every%20time%20you%20do%20this%20when%20recording,%20you%20can%20cause%20a%20\"skip\"%20in%20the%20recorded%20data%20since%20FS%20incurs%20a%20small%20micro-second%20\"burble\"%20when%20switching%20views%20or%20panning%20around.%20%20You'll%20have%20plenty%20of%20opportunity%20to%20sightsee%20later%20when%20viewing%20the%20recording,%20so%20keep%20your%20eyes%20forward%20and%20focus%20on%20the%20plan. Rule%202:%20DON'T%20fly%20at%20100%%20throttle!%20%20This%20is%20self-explanatory%20to%20anyone%20who's%20been%20involved%20in%20online%20formation%20flying%20attempts%20with%20people%20who%20can't%20throttle%20back%20even%20a%20little%20bit.%20%20The%20leader%20just%20runs%20away%20from%20everyone%20and%20no%20one%20can%20catch%20up%20-%20pointless,%20and%20it%20sucks.%20I%20don't%20even%20TAKE%20OFF%20at%20100%%20throttle,%20since%20most%20planes%20are%20more%20than%20capable%20of%20getting%20off%20the%20ground%20at%2085%%20throttle%20or%20so%20if%20you%20don't%20mind%20using%20a%20little%20more%20runway%20and%20flaps.%20%20Once%20in%20the%20air,%20throttle%20back%20to%2070%%20or%20so,%20or%20you'll%20have%20a%20recording%20that%20you%20just%20won't%20be%20able%20to%20fly%20alongside%20with. Rule%203:%20%20BE%20SMOOTH%20and%20GENTLE.%20%20That%20is,%20IF%20you%20want%20to%20do%20formation%20flying%20and%20want%20your%20wingmen%20to%20stay%20in%20place.%20%20If%20you%20want%20to%20create%20a%20dogfight%20session,%20then%20by%20all%20means%20do%20what%20you%20want%20to.%20%20But%20for%20formation%20flying,%20the%20leader%20has%20a%20responsibility%20to%20not%20whip%20his%20wingmen%20around%20and%20loose%20them.%20%20That%20means%20no%20sudden%20throttle%20changes,%20no%20steeply-banked%20turns,%20and%20try%20to%20fly%20using%20trim%20only%20and%20just%20the%20smallest%20joystick%20movements%20you%20need%20to.%20%20Your%20wingmen%20(you)%20will%20thank%20you%20later. Rule%204:%20%20Give%20your%20wingmen%20time%20and%20try%20to%20use%20visual%20cues%20when%20possible.%20%20For%20instance,%20at%20the%20start%20of%20the%20flight%20I%20sit%20still%20on%20the%20runway%20for%2015%20seconds%20to%20give%20myself%20time,%20later,%20to%20make%20any%20small%20adjustments%20to%20trim%20or%20view%20before%20takeoff%20that%20I%20might%20need%20to%20do%20as%20a%20wingman.%20%20Then,%20right%20before%20throttling%20up%20for%20the%20takeoff%20roll,%20I%20flash%20my%20NAV%20lights%20on%20and%20then%20off%20a%20second%20later.%20%20That'll%20show%20up%20in%20the%20recording%20and%20is%20a%20visual%20cue%20saying%20\"lets%20roll!\".%20%20You%20can%20use%20NAV%20lights%20to%20indicate%20gear%20or%20flap%20up/down%20changes,%20or%20even%20use%20scenery%20landmarks,%20such%20as%20turning%20on%20your%20airshow%20smoke%20(or%20whatever)%20right%20when%20crossing%20the%20runway%20threshold%20for%20instance,%20so%20it'll%20be%20easier%20for%20the%20later%20flights%20to%20synchronize%20with. OK%20that's%20my%20preaching%20on%20the%20subject%20(I%20promise)%20so%20let's%20fly! Set%20up%20your%20flight...easy%20enough.%20%20Airplane%20on%20runway,%20check: Set%20up%20your%20forward%20view.%20%20Use%20the%20\"w\"%20key%20from%20the%202D%20cockpit%20(or%20\"a\"%20key%20in%20FSX%20to%20get%20to%20the%202D%20cockpit,%20then%20press%20\"w\")%20for%20the%20\"wonderwoman\"%20full-screen%20HUD%20mode.%20%20You're%20not%20out%20for%20realism%20here,%20you're%20out%20for%20VISIBILITY.%20%20So%20you%20might%20want%2075%%20zoom%20for%20this%20view%20also.%20%20Later%20flights%20as%20wingmen%20will%20want%20to%20zoom%20out%20to%2031%%20(you'll%20see%20why%20when%20we%20get%20to%20those%20flights). Also,%20I%20strongly%20suggest%20turning%20on%20the%20\"Axis%20Indicator\"%20in%20the%20View%20Options%20menu%20so%20you%20have%20a%20reference%20point%20to%20lay%20against%20the%20horizon.%20This%20is%20CRITICAL%20for%20maintaining%20smooth%20turns%20and%20level%20flight%20so%20your%20wingmen%20won't%20be%20struggling%20to%20stay%20with%20you. Next,%20SAVE%20your%20flight%20because%20you%20need%20a%20saved%20starting%20point%20for%20your%20wingmen%20to%20start%20from%20too.%20%20Plus,%20if%20you're%20not%20happy%20with%20your%20recording,%20you%20can%20come%20back%20any%20time%20and%20start%20from%20the%20same%20place%20to%20re-record%20it. OK,%20now%20that%20you're%20ready%20and%20have%20everything%20set,%20go%20to%20the%20\"Recorder\"%20menu%20and%20hit%20record! Hit%20\"OK\"%20to%20accept%20the%20default%20FSR%20setting%20of%20recording%20every%201/4%20second%20of%20flight: The%20\"recording\"%20status%20should%20show%20at%20the%20bottom-right%20of%20your%20screen.%20%20I%20wait%2015%20seconds%20(see%20Rule%204%20above)%20then%20flash%20my%20NAV%20lights%20on%20and%20off%20(Rule%204%20again)%20and%20throttle%20up%20SLOWLY%20to%2080%20or%2085%%20throttle%20or%20so%20(Rule%202!). Fly%20your%20planned%20flight,%20keeping%20your%20view%20forward%20at%20all%20times%20(Rule%201%20above).%20%20When%20turning,%20ease%20slowly%20into%20the%20turn%20to%20give%20your%20wingmen%20time%20to%20see%20the%20change%20and%20follow,%20and%20keep%20your%20bank%20shallow%20(Rule%203).%20%20The%20\"pipper\"%20or%20Axis%20Indicator,%20that%20you%20turned%20on%20in%20the%20View%20Options%20menu,%20will%20help%20you%20keep%20a%20consistent%20bank%20angle%20and%20also%20help%20keep%20your%20nose%20on%20the%20horizon%20and%20keep%20your%20vertical%20changes%20in%20flight%20path%20to%20a%20minimum. If%20you%20feel%20the%20desire%20to%20pan%20around%20and%20see%20exactly%20where%20you%20are%20in%20relation%20to%20landmarks,%20remember%20that%20doing%20so%20will%20cause%20\"jumps%20and%20skips\"%20in%20the%20recording.%20%20Doesn’t%20mean%20you%20can't%20do%20it%20though.....just%20PAUSE%20your%20flight%20(recording%20will%20be%20paused%20too)%20then%20go%20look%20around%20to%20your%20heart's%20content: Keep%20flying%20a%20nice%20smooth%20flight%20until%20you%20think%20you've%20recorded%20enough%20to%20make%20you%20happy.%20%20I%20like%20to%20have%20my%20flights%20end%20with%20a%20formation%20landing%20and%20\"parade%20taxi\"%20back%20to%20a%20wing-abreast%20shutdown%20on%20the%20ramp.%20%20%20If%20you%20want%20to%20do%20the%20same,%20just%20remember%20to%20land%20a%20little%20long,%20enough%20past%20the%20threshold%20to%20allow%20room%20of%20your%20wingmen%20to%20touch%20down%20without%20having%20to%20prune%20the%20trees%20on%20final.%20%20As%20for%20length%20of%20recording,%20mine%20usually%20go%20about%2010-15%20minutes%20(600%20to%20900%20seconds). I%20like%20to%20find%20a%20nice%20scenic%20place%20to%20park%20before%20shutting%20'er%20down.%20%20Don't%20bother%20opening%20the%20door%20of%20the%20airplane,%20only%20because%20this%20is%20something%20that%20FSR%20can't%20record%20or%20playback.%20%20But%20it%20will%20record%20the%20engine%20and%20prop%20stop. Press%20ESCAPE%20when%20you're%20done%20and%20FSR%20will%20pop%20up%20and%20ask%20where%20you%20want%20to%20save%20the%20flight.%20%20If%20you've%20choked%20and%20don't%20want%20to%20save%20it,%20hit%20\"Cancel\"%20and%20tell%20FSR%20you%20don't%20want%20to%20keep%20recording.%20%20But%20if%20you're%20happy%20(and%20hopefully%20you%20are)%20then%20go%20ahead%20and%20save%20it.....by%20the%20way%20you%20may%20have%20to%20make%20a%20\"FS-Recorder\"%20folder%20for%20your%20recording,%20and%20I%20find%20that%20a%20good%20place%20to%20make%20such%20a%20folder%20is%20in%20your%20\"My%20Documents%20/%20Flight%20Simulator%20Files\"%20folder.%20%20I've%20got%20so%20many%20now%20that%20I'm%20making%20sub-folders%20for%20certain%20themed%20flights.

That's it, you’re done with this part! Now, on to Part Two where we play that flight back and fly alongside of it, and it gets REALLY cool!!!



To go to Part 3, click HERE!

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Last edited by JG300-Stoopy on Thu Sep 20, 2007 5:05 pm; edited 7 times in total
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Uhu_Fledermaus
Aircraft Demolition Expert

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Joined: Nov 27, 2004
Posts: 4368
Location: Blaricum, The Netherlands ~GMT+1
PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2007 6:09 pm
Post subject: Re: FS-Recorder Tutorial, Parts One and Two!

This is absolutely wonderfull Stoopy !!

Chapeau !!


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JG300-Stoopy
Power User

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Joined: Jan 04, 2005
Posts: 5832
Location: Group W bench
PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2007 6:48 pm
Post subject: Re: FS-Recorder Tutorial, Parts One and Two!

Glad ya like it Fled, Part 3 is done too and even more to come.

And I'm gonna say.....please, direct all positive comments to Matthias Neusinger at his site (listed above). He deserves all the credit in the world for making this great utility. I'm just passing the word along on some pointers as requested.


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