Usually I do not record complete flights, but interesting approaches for a later performance review. I use FS Recorder as software to record the relevant flight data. FS Recorder is an add-on module for Microsoft Flight Simulator available for FS2004 and FSX. It allows recording and playback of flights, similar as the instant replay and video recorder built into FS, but with a lot more features.
The recorded flights are saved in a binary file format containing flight data and can be played back inside FS. Additionally FS Recorder includes camera features, which give you more freedom for watching your flights
I record the following flight data:
- Flight Controls: Elevators, ailerons, rudder
- Flaps: Flaps handle
- Spoilers: Spoilers handle
- Gear: Landing gear lever
- Throttles: Throttle levers
- Engines On/Off
- Lights: Aircraft lights
- Parking Brake
- Smoke System
- NAV Radios: Nav1/2 frequency and OBS, ADF frequency
- COM Radios: Com1/2 frequency, transponder
- Airspeeds: IAS, TAS, Mach
- Ambient Wind
FS Recoder configuration menue
The recording can be started either per dialog or silent. I prefer the silent version with the key combination ctrl + shift + R. Record stop either manual per dialog or automatically after a predefined time has elapsed after landing.
During the playback of a recorded flight sequence you can lean back in your pilot seat and watch the magic things which happen. The aircraft is flying without any intervention, complete automatically. During an approach the flaps and the gear get extended, the trim wheels are turning and much more things happen. Just in the same way than the approach was recorded. Thanks to the event triggered audio setup of the flight deck, sounds e.g. for gear and flap transisitions are triggered as occurred during the recording.
The playback of the recorded data is also possible on an other computers than originally recorded. Prerequisite is an installation of the same MS Flight Simulator version and installed FSRecorder modul. Of course, the same aircraft add-on should be installed and used. Once in a while I do that for screenshots of a previous flight. During playback I can pause the flight simulator any time and so I have plenty of time to find the best camera position.
Snapshot from a recorded take-off in EDDM, Munich, RWY 08R. Scenery by Aerosoft
The latest version of the FSRecorder includes a alpha version for video rendering. I made several attempts to get it running, the result was always a wmv file with black content. As soon as I have time I will investigate this problem.
FS Recoder: http://www.fs-recorder.net/