By Martin Loxbo 811805
#524713 1. Is it possible to tune an 8.33 kHz spaced channel using the .com1 command? For example .com1 118.005?

2. If not, would it be possible to add support for this, or otherwise manually tuning frequencies through vPilot?

In Europe, 8.33 kHz channel spacing is being introduced rapidly and not just for enroute sectors. This year most TWR/APP/GND/DEL frequencies are also changing. Here you can see how the frequencies will change in the UK and in Sweden. As you can see, by the end of the year almost all ATS units will be using 8.33 kHz spacing, and it would of course be nice if this could be simulated on VATSIM instead of having to use obsolete frequencies.
By Ross Carlson 887155
#524714 The dot command currently enforces 25 KHz spacing. It would be trivial to change it to support 8.33, but I think the bigger question here is whether or not it is wise to use frequencies that pilots cannot tune from the radio stack in their sim and force them to use dot commands in their pilot client. From the way I phrase that question, I bet you have a good idea as to how I might answer it. :)

That being said, I definitely would like to find a way for us to properly support 8.33, I just don't know what that would be yet.
By Torben Andersen 861112
#524717 For those of us, who is using a hardware cockpit, using dot commands is NOT a way, we would like to follow. Having said that, the manufactures of hardware also need to make radio units, which can be tuned to the new range of frequencies. But no doubt this will happen quickly, if only the sims (FSX/P3D or X-plane) supports the 8.33kHz frequencies

By Randy Tyndall 1087023
#524720 Ross,

The dot command currently enforces 25 KHz spacing

I cannot speak about vPilot because I didn't test it, but I did try 8.33 kHz spacing frequencies using dot commands in FSInn and succesfully tuned on my aircraft radio and in the VVL tab of FSInn the 25 kHz spacing frequencies (using 118 MHz as an example only) 118.00, 118.02(5), 118.50, 118.72(5), and 118.10 MHz. Then, 118.010, 118.020, 118.030, 118.040, 118.050, 118.060, 118.070, 118.080, and 118.090 MHz in the 8.33 kHz list. That gave me 11 frequencies between 118.00 MHz and 118.10 MHz, inclusively, instead of the "what we are used to" 5 frequencies.

Now, there were no controllers on using any of those <dot> command tuned frequencies, so I couldn't test to see if "118.030 MHz" tuned with the dot command worked or even if it really "tuned" 118.035 MHz the way 118.02 MHz on the aircraft radio tuner will reach the 8.33 kHz frequency of 118.025 MHz.

But, the frequency did show in VVL and even showed "118.03" on the aircraft radio display, using the default FS2004 and default FSX Cessna 172.

By Martin Loxbo 811805
#524723 Thanks Ross for explaining how it currently works in vPilot and thanks Randy for looking into how FSInn handles these frequencies!

I agree that having to use the dot commands to tune the frequency is certainly not ideal. What about adding a radio tuning panel to vPilot? As for using hardware radio panels, well you must always be able to use the pilot client e.g. for text messages, so using it for frequency changes should also be possible (of course not ideal, but possible!).

I think a first step towards 8.33 support on VATSIM could be to add support for it in vPilot, but that still leaves the other pilot clients (are there any that are still being updated?).

On the ATC side, I assume the clients will take whatever frequency is typed in, but can you confirm whether it would work in VRC?
By Markus Schober 1328585
Christoph Reule 1379750 wrote:To be honest, I don't really understand the problem behind using the pilot client software to set the frequency.

To explain from my humble point of view:
  • Many if not most of the aircraft's radios offer standby frequencies, the pilot clients I know do not.
  • Many sim aircraft are equipped with a second radio, so together with the standby frequencies you are able to pre-program and easily switch between four stations. The pilot clients I know do not offer such an interface.
  • It always has been a stunning experience for interested observers that I demonstrated our hobby to how cool it is to change a frequency in a simulated cockpit and you get to talk to a different controller on the radio. Selecting a different station in an external application would probably not lead to that level of awesomeness.
  • We're always talking about realism, but the degree of realism that comes with the ability to manage the COM frequencies using the sim aircraft's radios is IMHO more desirable than being able to use real world frequencies through the pilot client.
By Christoph Reule 1379750
#524752 About points 1 & 2: I think Ross may give some ideas here, he's the true technical expert. :)

About points 3 & 4: Seen from my more than 20 years in flight simulation, the fact itself you're able to tune in different channels and talk (or write) to different controllers has always been the most fascinating part, not the way how you do this (radio panel or external application).