HiFi – Active Sky P3D Major Update B8080 Officially Released!

Over several months and many updates, in lockstep with new P3D builds, ASP3D has evolved to offer the best weather simulation experience possible on the latest versions of the P3D v5 and P3D v4 platforms.  This latest official ASP3D update incorporates all the redesigns, interface changes, new functionality, adjustments and fixes that have been required. The update is offered absolutely free of charge to all existing ASP3D customers.

B8080 (Update 021422) brings latest P3D 5.3 HF2 compatibility, new EA mode and Volumetric Clouds mode depiction improvements, new Volumetric Cloud transition smoothing enhancements, tuned visibility depiction in all modes, new EA mode in-cloud visibility reduction and cloud motion effect for low ceilings, and much, much more. 

Get the B8080 update today from the downloads page at HiFi Simulation Technologies:

Note: If you have already installed B8080 during the Open Beta cycle, you do not need to re-install it.

Changelog: Update February 14, 2022 (B8080)

– [02/14/22] Fixed issue in installation package with VC++ Runtime Redistributables check and automatic install preventing proper SimConnect initialization in some cases with Prepar3D v4.5

– [02/11/22] Adjusted theme reload frequency/triggers in EA+Volumetric Clouds mode for additional dynamic weather changes throughout a flight (also eliminates potential inconsistencies in conditions data compared with actual depiction)

– [02/02/22] Fixed issue with custom weather mode aloft editing page parsing issue causing wrong/low temperatures aloft in some regional/number format settings

– [02/02/22] Changed destination reload/force distance to 40nm (vs 70nm) with EA+Volumetric Clouds when Flight Plan is loaded and departure to destination distance is less than 100nm, to provide more variety in weather conditions for these shorter GA-type flights

– [01/24/22] Reduced non-EA mode upper visibility at high altitudes by approximately 20% when set to 199 miles or less for better atmospheric haze effect (use 200 miles for increased upper visibility with EA off – applies to P3D 5.3+)

– [01/24/22] Reverted maximum upper visibility option change to 200 miles – now back to 199 miles by default when EA mode is off (Docs updated)

– [01/19/22] Further visibility tuning for more consistent results between EA and non-EA modes (P3D 5.3+)

– [01/19/22] Changed Maximum upper visibility option default to 200 miles vs. 199 miles based on latest feedback – Use less than 200 miles if you prefer lower visibility (more atmospheric haze) at higher altitudes

– [01/19/22] Updated and tuned visibility handling in both EA and non-EA modes for higher effective aloft visibility and better volumetric fog depiction/blending (for P3D 5.3+)

– [01/19/22] Changed default minimum and maximum cloud draw distance options to 110 vs. previous 90 miles for better non-Volumetric cloud visuals despite an increase in potential cloud depiction overhead (to achieve better balance with P3D 5.3+ with legacy clouds) – Documentation updated for this change

– [01/19/22] Fixed visibility issue in EA mode (gray or brown band or excessive horizon visibility restriction)

– [01/19/22] P3D (HF2) compatibility established with preliminary depiction tuning

– [01/18/22] Added additional detail to error messages when P3D Appdata or Simulator installation path cannot be validated, due to potentially not running P3D for the first time after a fresh install – Running P3D first is required so that necessary configuration files are created and can be found/validated

– [01/10/22] Added experimental new EA-mode (volumetric or legacy clouds) In-Cloud visibility reduction and Cloud Motion Effect for lower overcast/broken clouds (controlled by existing user options) – works for ceiling clouds below 5000ft AGL only on P3D 5.3+

– [01/10/22] Adjusted cumulus cloud thickness when using Volumetric Clouds (with EA mode) to be thinner (max 15000ft) to prevent excessively dark daytime skies below these clouds

– [01/10/22] Adjusted cumulonimbus cloud thickness when using Volumetric Clouds (with EA mode) to be thinner (max 20000ft) to prevent excessively dark daytime skies below these clouds

NOTE: Volumetric Clouds depiction (with EA mode) effectively renders the cloud thickness much higher, anywhere from 30 to 100% higher than as configured, so the reduction of thickness parameters should not result in a visual reduction of height of thunderstorm clouds

– [01/10/22] – Adjusted stratus cloud thickness when using Volumetric Clouds (with EA mode) to be thinner (max 3000ft) to prevent excessively dark daytime skies below stratus layers

– [01/10/22] Fixed EA visibility issue where visibility could be rendered too high

– [01/10/22] Updated options descriptions and documentation for updated EA mode and volumetric cloud mode considerations (some options previously hidden have been unhidden as they are now available in EA mode depending on volumetric clouds option)

– [01/07/22] Added additional DLL version checking and warning when a mixed/invalid P3D installation with mixed components exists, which could cause multiple issues with P3D itself as well as add-ons

– [01/07/22] Fixed issue with Reset to Defaults button not properly resetting to default options in Settings screen

– [01/07/22] Fixed issue where precipitation (rain/snow) might not depict properly in P3D when ASP3D client not running and manual P3D weather themes/condition settings are used

– [01/06/22] Added special error handling and logging for rare cloud model saving error issue troubleshooting

– [01/06/22] Tuned cloud detection logic for P3D 5.3+ for more appropriate in-cloud detection (was detecting outside clouds in some cases due to cloud scale/rendering changes in P3D) – Applies only to Volclouds off and/or EA off

– [01/04/22] Fixed issue where very long smoothing transition times might occur with P3D 5.3+, causing very high visibility when low visibility is expected, especially on approach/landing at destination in IMC where clearer visibility exists on the approach path and descent into surface altitudes (below approximately 7,000ft) occurs at those initially-higher visibilities

– [01/04/22] Increased visibility transition speed in general (P3D 5.3+) to further avoid potentially long smoothing times in some cases

– [01/04/22] Increased wind smoothing transition speed by approximately 4 times (P3D 5.3+ only) to avoid high surface wind situations on approach/final when lower upper-air winds are very high and surface winds are much lower

– [12/23/21] P3D compatibility established with (HF1+Update for lights fix)

– [12/20/21] Fixes for AS Connector package/revision issues in previous build

– [12/19/21] Added automatic force of maximum upper visibility to 200sm when EA mode is on, or EA mode is changed to on during a session

– [12/19/21] Added automatic hide of visibility options that do not have effect when EA mode is ON

– [12/17/21] Reverted some previous 5.3.12-intended visibility changes, as the now-available P3D shader fix from LM is available to apply and does a better job and providing expected general visibility vs. ASP3D adjustments – This shader fix is expected to be available officially in the next P3D update/hotfix – See to apply the fix yourself until it is provided in an update

– [12/17/21] Minor volumetric fog adjustments for better visuals

– [12/17/21] Removed max upper visibility slider option when in EA mode to avoid confusion and assist with better visuals in all EA mode conditions, forcing this internal setting to 200 miles when EA is active (changing option on the fly in simulator may result in unpredictable visibility behavior, and a restart of sim/ASP3D is recommended when changing modes)

– [12/17/21] Updated option descriptions and documentation to account for changed/missing options in recent updates

– [12/17/21] Adjusted legacy (non-volumetric) cloud theme load update process to avoid potential clear or thin clouds issue in some cases

– [12/15/21] P3D compatibility updates and tuning

– [12/12/21] Various adjustments and tuning to visibility, both upper and lower altitude, for better P3D 5.3 results in all cases and all graphics/depiction modes (EA/Volumetric Clouds)

– [12/12/21] Horizon distance adjustment options and relevant visibility depiction results tuned for better P3D 5.3 results (applies only to non-EA mode)

– [12/09/21] Brought back the “Maximum upper visibility” option and defaulted this to 199 miles, providing upper altitude visibility “haze at a distance” by default as per feedback – To turn off any haze and have upper visibility be effectively unlimited as per previous 7900 and later builds, set this to 200 miles (docs updated)

– [12/09/21] Adjusted visibility depiction to prevent visibility being rendered too high in many cases with P3D 5.3

– [12/07/21] Adjusted visibility smoothing interval to be significantly quicker with P3D 5.2+ to avoid excessively lengthy transitions that might result in unexpected visibility conditions, especially during landing at destination

– [12/01/21] P3D v5.3.12 compatibility added

– [11/18/21] AS Connector Installer package update fix for ActiveSkyUtils.exe version checking to properly identify out-of-version installations and notify that update is required on some version of P3D

– [11/13/21] Adjusted ambient precipitation trigger to override surface conditions and always follow the radar if conditions did not specify precipitation in METAR (e.g., in areas of transitioning conditions) – Applies only to non-volumetric legacy clouds or non-EA mode

– [11/09/21] Adjusted SimConnect interface process for better performance

– [11/09/21] Adjusted New User Registration Form to remove reference to old open beta

– [11/09/21] Adjusted process to prevent ASCA theme installation when not needed (e.g. EA Mode On with Volumetric Clouds On)

– [09/20/21] Attempted fix/adjustment regarding Weather Request Menu in P3D where temperature and dewpoint, when using certain Windows number formats, would result in a missing decimal separator (e.g., 15,0C would be outputted as 150C) – Now all comma (,) characters are converted to period (.) characters (150C now shows as 15.0C) to help avoid confusion despite potentially wrong decimal separator – This is due to P3D not properly handling comma (,) characters in Menu text

– [09/18/21] Fixed potential problem with ambient interpolation (such as improper temperature in spare areas in some cases)

– [09/09/21] Fixed problem with XGauge BKG button not cycling correctly

– [08/19/21] Significant visibility handling changes for better accuracy, reduced hard line depiction at lower altitudes, and better smoothing when using P3D v5.2 HF1 (or later)

– [08/19/21] Disabled the application of Low and High altitude Volfog horizon distance adjustments when in EA mode, since these options do not have the intended effect – these option descriptions and User’s Guide reference items have been modified to indicate that these options only apply to non-EA mode

– [08/19/21] Removed Maximum Upper Visibility option description in User’s Guide (option removed in previous update and forced to 200 miles for best results)

– [08/19/21] Fixed issue related to Cloud Draw Distance and EA mode with legacy (non-volumetric) clouds, where ASP3D would reduce the apparent cloud draw distance to 80 miles regardless of CDD settings

– [08/19/21] Various small documentation and user option description updates regarding EA-mode applicability

– [08/11/21] Fixed an issue related to loading of multiple previously-saved offline weather files

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