Sunday, November 24, 2019

A-4 Single Seater Beta for P3Dv4.4/v4.5

As per my usual procedure, here is the post meant to collect the feedback from the A-4 Beta Testing. This post is (almost) constantly update with the "accepted" bugs and suggestions, color coded to reflect their status. "Accepted" means that I have understood what the testers reported, I could replicate it (or at least be sure this is not a misinterpretation or an error from the tester) and I have "accepted" it as a item to be addressed.

To apply for the Beta please send and email to with:
- SHORT description of your system: just CPU, GPU, RAM
- Exact version of the simulator you are running (A-4 requires at least P3D v4.4)
- If you have Tacpact installed or not
- SHORT description of real and virtual flying experience


Precedence will be given to users and testers of the TA-4J as they are more familiar with the plane.

Color code

RED means that it the defect has been categorized as a major issue. This is typically a showstopper (operation of the aicraft is impossible or severely inhibited) and must be addressed before the product release.

YELLOW means that it is definitely an issue for the project, that should be addressed before the product release, but not as critical as a "red" issue

GREEN means that either the issue is very minor (and will not be noticed by most users), or the problem is non-existent (feature reported as bug) or that is was an red or Yellow issue that has been solved

BLUE means suggestions or ideas to improve the product

I am not sure if a flight manual will be available before the Beta is released, most probably not, but here are some peculiar things you need to know before operating the aicraft.

The preferred way to report bugs is to post a comment on this blog (so that everyone can see it). Otherwise, email messages with "TA-4J Bug Report" as subject are fine.
It is better, before posting, if you check if thebug you have spotted is already in the list below or in the comments.
Bugs or change request are evaluated ASAP and, if confirmed and accepted, added to the list below.


This list was updated on 01/12/2019 21:00AM CEST
The latest Beta version is 1, released on 13/12/2019
Internal Beta (not released) version Beta 2 last built: 13/12

Total lines (excluding suggestions) 16
Current red lines 0
Current yellow lines 2 (of which 0 rejected for various reasons)
Current green lines 21
Current blue lines 0
Progress towards release: 91%

A4P3DEXT01 - Canopy animation missing - FIXED 01/12
A4P3DEXT02 - Smoke pipe exhaust missing from Blue Angels specific model - FIXED 12/12
A4P3DEXT03 - Remove guns from SuperFox models - FIXED 01/12
A4P3DEXT04 - Tail planes are not perfectly aligned (all models) - FIXED 01/12
A4P3DEXT05 - Minor glitch in windshield seal geometry - FIXED 09/12
A4P3DEXT06 - Added specific model for A-4G/K (with bent probe and spoilers but no hump) - FIXED 12/12

A4P3DVC01 - Add missing canopy scratches - ADDED 01/12
A4P3DVC02 - Gunsight collimation mask does not work - FIXED 01/12
A4P3DVC03 - Request to animate the toe brakes - ADDED 07/12
A4P3DVC04 - Point of view too low - FIXED 05/12
A4P3DVC05 - Stick visibility does not work as intended… you cannot make it show once hidden. - FIXED 05/12
A4P3DVC06 - Captions on throttle panel incorrect - FIXED 09/12


A4P3DMISC01 - Files are not signed for Tacpack multiplayer - SIGNED FILES 05/12
A4P3DMISC02 - Pocket checklist is for the TA-4J, not the A-4E/ pocket checklist is needed. - FIXED. Adapted pocket checklist to single seater.
A4P3DMISC03 - Flight manual is for the TA-4J, not the A-4E/ manual WIP. - FIXED 12/12
A4P3DMISC04 - Incorrect reference to TA-4 sound folder - FIXED 01/12
A4P3DMISC05 - Guns do not work as intended (check Tacpack code) - FIXED 01/12
A4P3DMISC06 - Inaccurate behavior of SideWinder missiles

A4P3DMISC07 - Sound dll configuration poiting towards the TA-4 folder - FIXED 04/12
A4P3DMISC08 - Israeli A-4 livery did not show as the numbering in aicraft.cfg was incorrect. FIXED 04/12 

A4P3DMISC09 - Tacpack STA5 release position is incorrect - FIXED 06/12
A4P3DMISC10 - Add smoke to Blue Angels modelA4P3DMISC11 - Create specific folder for upgraded A-4E with hump - FIXED 12/12


fudgepuppy said...

Canopy does not open in external models.

Airtrooper said...

Some low altitude sounds for the engine appear to be missing. For instance when on the ground with the engine running you can only hear it when looking from the front. When looking at the jet pipe it is silent!

Airtrooper said...

The default eye point in the VC is set very low indeed. I need to raise it quite a lot each flight just to be able to fly an approach.

Airtrooper said...

When lowering the flaps (possibly above speed, though I don't get a warning) the "Wheels" amber light on the warning ribbon illuminates. Is this correct?

Dan said...

On the cosmetic side of things is it possible to have the windshield frame not as thick and more round? Don't worry I know it is a really low priority. I concur with the eye point, I have to set mine at 1.95.

Airtrooper said...

Regarding the low altitude sounds I get this errors as I take off:

Error Encountered
The system cannot find the path specified.

Full Error Code 0x3
Location 5

... so it assumes you already have the TA-4J installed ;-)

Airtrooper said...

Would it also be possible to have the smaller Bullpup A model included, rather than just the huge B model please?

Airtrooper said...

Regarding the sounds, it appears to me the Sound.ini file inside SimObjects\Airplanes\A-4E\panel\Sound\ need to have all the occurrences of /TA-4J/ replaced with /A-4E/

Tim Swindle said...

The fuel dump appears inop. With the switch set to "dump", the fuel quantity doesn't change.

When the APC system is turned on (gear and flaps extended, power above 70% RPM per the manual), the throttle either goes straight to idle, or goes to full power for a couple of seconds and then to idle, and it doesn't attempt to respond to AoA at all, since the power stays at idle regardless of what airspeed/AoA the aircraft reaches.

In reference to the previous comments about the default VC eyepoint, the gunsight reticle moves with the eyepoint when it's adjusted (with or without the CCIP option selected), but I recognize that's tricky to solve since P3D doesn't really do collimated stuff very well.

Airtrooper said...

I like to use the RFN Gauge (I do have TacPack, but prefer not to use the carriers). I've installed v5 of the gauge into the A4 but it won't function properly. It does work with other aircraft I installed the gauge into, in the same way, after the A4. The problem is switching the Standby frequency for the carrier to the Active frequency (the button appears inactive, but I suspect it is the A4 radios preventing the switch over). The only way I can get it to work is to fly a different aircraft with the gauge on and correctly tuned in, then switch aircraft to the A4.

Airtrooper said...

I'm a TacPack user but I cannot 1) get the canon to fire; or 2) the Sidewinder to lock on (even when trailing a KC135 for miles!). This could be a TacPack issue, an A4 issue, or a Code-18 error... I simply can't tell. I have no problems launching rockets and dropping bombs from the A4 with TacPack by the way.

Airtrooper said...

So far I've been testing in 2D in the VC. Today I switched to testing VR, using my Rift CV1. I have a few comments/questions etc.

1) Are the pedals supposed to dip forward when applying the brakes (a la toe brakes)? Currently they don't

2) I get no sense of there being any cockpit class... it feels like I'm sitting in an open cockpit. Can some reflections and very, very subtle dirt/scratches be added help with this please?

3) VR frees one's eyepoint. I already raise the eyepoint because I regard the default as being too low. The non-collimated gunsight becomes more obvious still in VR (the reticle is seen to be floating out over the aircraft's nose when viewed in 3D). If I could request only one change to this model it'd be the addition of a fully collimated sight/reticle ;-)

Airtrooper said...

I solved my RFN Gauge issue... 1) master avionics need to be on; 2) and the radios need to be on! ;-) You could call it a Code-18 error... or something to add to the Manual (unless I missed it).

On the subject of carriers... the A4 tends to take a dive off the end of a short catapult. It needs to be trimmed properly and the stick held back, but even so the nose dips as it moves along the track. This is a shame as the A4 spent more time flying from smaller boats than most other jets of its generation. It'd be lovely if it could be fixed.

Airtrooper said...

Some nice-to-have, though not essential, suggestions...

As the A4 was designed and built as a nuclear bomber it'd be great to have one/some/all appropriate weapons as an option, such as:

Mk7 (inc. folding fin, perhaps linked to gear up/down)

These could either be static (i.e. non-drop-able dead weights) or use a version of the default drop-able object code... such as was used for the TMB (i.e. nuclear weapon) on the Flying Stations S1 & S2 Buccanneers, made by Phil Chandler. This is because TacPack doesn't do nuclear. A default [conventional] bomb blast could be included, but the manual could point users to the free nuclear blast addon (I could go find it if needed).

The "icing on the cake" would be the anti-radiation heat shield (i.e. blind) inside the cockpit, which could either be toggled visible/invisible by the user or as the above weapons are loaded. This could also be animated to close/open by the user (great for blind flying practice too!)

As I say, just nice-to-have suggestions.

Airtrooper said...

Another suggestion to improve the product... The option to carry a buddy-buddy AAR pod on the centerline station.

ScimmiaSpaziale said...


Apologies for the lack of feedback in the comments...I've been byusy for my day job.
Miscellaneous comments below:

Wheels light -> behavior seems correct as per flight manual

Canopy/windshield shape -> the depicted versions have the older canopy and windshield. Later versions (A-4M and beyond) had a different shape and better visibility

Bullpup, AAR and other stores -> Maybe they will be added at a later stage. At the moment I am leaving them out as the package is already too big to handle.

Avionic switch -> In the sim, the AVIONIC MASTER switch is tied to the radio knob. If the radio is off, all avionic equipment is off. Also, it will not be possible to engage the autopilot.

blackout11c said...

While I’m not a tester, change A4P3DEXT06 seems a bit iffy to me, as unless the model for the A-4K is specifically intended to reflect the aircraft in its configuration after Project KAHU (1987 at earliest, 1991 at latest), the A-4K should should have the dorsal avionics hump

Dan said...

Any new built to test before the release ?

ScimmiaSpaziale said...


I'll check the specific serial an correct the model. I had the specific request from the repainter to remove the hump from the included livery… which may lead to an incorrect model, as AFAIK, project KAHU had the new A-4M canopy, which is not depicted in my model. Apologies for the inaccuracy.


No - project has been released.

Anonymous said...

Are the beta testers getting a copy of the release version? Thanks!

ScimmiaSpaziale said...


I have checked and the included livery (NZ6206) is correct without hump - livery is from 1987 - model canopy (old style) is correct, although the real plane had additional antennas.

@Anonymous tester

Testers can request a free copy by email by specifying the email associated to a SimMarket account.

blackout11c said...


While the A-4K always had the original-style canopy, this does mean that there is an issue with the 3D modelling around the canopy, both on the external model and in the VC. The issue is actually surprisingly common with 3D models of the A-4 - for example, the same issue can be found on the Virtavia Skyhawk.

Specifically, the issue is the models have the canopy on the same basic plane as the side of the forward fuselage - you can draw a straight, unbroken line up the side of the fuselage and canopy - when on the real aircraft, there is a noticeable change where the windshield and canopy glass starts. I have an Imgur post with images of the 3D model, as well as images of the real aircraft for reference:

I'll stress that this is a minor issue, but it just looks a bit off once you know about it.

Victory103 said...

1st test flight complete, I only have some left over or miss aligned bolts (8) for the clock/wet compass on the canopy bow. Noticed in-flight and then once on the ground with canopy open. Can provide pics if needed.