Originally Posted by pharcycle
well.... distributed in the sense of using one computer per monitor and combining to create large spans of screens with their offsets for multi display setups... Bit like eyefinity but as you're duplicating the complete hardware you don't get any loss in performance with the large resolution... just a loss of liquidity! You can spit the data out to multiple instances of Xplane across a network so have say 4x for displays, 1x for an instructor console and another as a control platforms to drive a servo'd platform. It runs under linux and there are certainly versions of linux that can work as a distributed system (all current supercomputers employ this method for example) but I've not heard about xplane running like that.
Xplane employs a numerical method to calculate the aerodynamic forces on small 'finite elements' of the wings, fuselage etc (called blade elements - hence blade element theory) so it is more computationally intensive than FSX (which looks up tabulated parameters of how the aircraft behaves). This means XPlane can be used to predict the behaviour of new wing designs as well as more accurately model flight behaviour outside of stable flight (stalls, vortex ring states, etc). Xplane even comes with a wing modelling package so you can enter your own geometry for it to model and contains the surface maps of Mars so you can fly your planes there... should you want to... and give it rockets of course!
But, the graphics aren't quite as sweet as Microsofts offering so it depends what you want really
Very well put! Must say I like the way X-plane models flight dynamics but in the end the battle is lost for Laminar because ultimately FSX is raised form the dead by Lockheed Martins Prepar3D. I have not purchased it yet because on my hardware it will likely not run any better than FSX and I may have some problems with some of my addons. It is at version 1.4 Last time I checked but rumour has it that a major upgrade is coming in 2013. If it comes before Black friday my current hardware will get a chance to see how it handles it. If it comes after black friday we will see how my next gen hardware in the frigid garage runs FSX.
The current i7 2770k does really well overclocked 4ghz++ but at this point I will wait and see what plays out:
Here is an great example of FSX on a current machine. Granted this guy likes to add some after effects:
Compared to my i7 920 at 4.62ghz: