The PA28-181 Archer one of the newest version of the PA28 and is powered by a 180 hp Lycoming O-360-A4M engine and is capable of 128 ktas at cruise power and of 522nm of range (including 45′ of VFR fuel reserve).
The JustFlight rendition was built after a real PA28, G-CIFY, based at Turweston Airfield. This model features an impressive suite of avionics for instrument training and IFR flights, with a GNS 530 GPS, GNC 255 radio, S-TEC autopilot, HSI and ADF instruments, meaning that this aircraft is perfectly suitable for advanced IFR training.
Flight Model and Aircraft Behavior.
When we get a JustFlight aircraft we already know from our past experience how realistic they are and how accurately the flight model was tuned, so we directly begin our tests with some real-world maneuvers to check if the aircraft response and behavior matches the specifications of the model. As we expected also with this model JustFlight has done a very good job and the aircraft is fun to fly, making you enjoy the flight even if you are not a real world pilot, but it’s precision in the response and in the performances will stratify also the most expert users. Something very valuable for us is that the response you get from this model is not the same you get on their PA28 Arrow III and this makes you understand that a fine tuning and a deep research was done, and the flight model wasn’t just copied and pasted (as unfortunately we can clearly see in some models that are similar each other that comes from some other developers).
The JustFlight quality can be clearly seen in this aircraft’s flight model that achieves a 9/10.
Sounds and Cockpit Immersion
Let’s now talk about sounds. Once again we’re already used to JustFlight’s quality and for us it’s not a surprise. This aircraft isn’t an exception. The engine sound is clearly different from the other models and when we tried the aircraft for the first time it wasn’t what we were expecting, so we had some doubts on how realistic it actually was. To finally clarify is it was the actual sound of the aircraft or not I’ve decided to do a little research on the internet for real world videos of this aircraft when the engine sound could be heard at different RPMs. We’ve analyzed them and finally we’ve been able to affirm that it’s 100% realistic and was portrayed in the simulator perfectly, giving you the exact same feeling of the real thing.
For the cockpit immersion I have to admit that I don’t like this cockpit. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t like the real cockpit, it’s color and the instruments locations, while I really love the PA28 Arrow III one. But this is obviously a personal opinion on the real aircraft, when it comes to the JustFlight’s one… well… I don’t like it exactly as I don’t like the real one, but that means that It is absolutely realistic. Anyway, personal opinions apart, the cockpit immersion is, in my opinion, at the same good level of the previous JustFlight’s products and if you’ve already tried one of them you’ll feel at home
Sound and cockpit immersion of this aircraft gets a 10/10 mark.
3D Model and Textures
From the 3D Model and Texture point of view there isn’t much to say honestly. If you’ve tried one of the JustFlight products you’ll already know what you’ll find on this one. 3D Model and textures on this model are exactly at the same high quality of any of their products. If you haven’t done yet read one of our old reviews on a JF product and you’ll find that that quality level is applicable also on this one.
For this section of our review the aircraft gets 8.5/10
Systems and Plugins
The plugin set of this aircraft is almost the same of their others products, except the Hawk, and is very complete as always. The discussion done for the Sound part can be applied also on the plugin section.
Systems are always hard to replicate and while they are well done, from the injection to the elec part, I’ve to admit that I was a little bit disappointed when I saw that the circuit breakers were not functioning. Don’t get me wrong, they are not a major feature but they were functionals in the PA28 Arrow III and they were a sign of the high quality of JF products testifying that each system was independent and realistically modeled.
The radio is the same I use in the real world and I’ve found the JustFlight model to be very good and realistic, if you’re used to it you’ll find your self at home for sure.
This issue with the circuit breakers compromises a little bit the experience with the systems that gets a 7/10
There are two manuals provided with the aircraft. One of them only contains tables and graphics from the real manual, and they are a very useful feature for the most advanced pilots that usally makes use of them for planning each flight it’s better to use the data that comes directly from the manual of the original aircraft. The other manual contains the description and explanation of the aircraft and it’s systems and equipment.
The documentation provided is very accurate and enjoyable for both the expert simmer and the newby and gets a 9/10.
To conclude we can say that JustFlight has not disattended our expectaions and the product is very enjoyable and realistic. We feel to recommend this product both for simmers that wants an aircraft to start their General Aviation experience in X-Plane as this aircraft is not complex (no variable pitch and no retractable gear) but is perfectly equipped bot vor VFR and night VFR training and bot basic and advanced IFR training. But we also recommend this aircraft to an expert simmer and real world pilot that wants to fly this model or an analog IFR equipped model.
Overall mark for this amazing JustFlight product is 9/10
As always I personally thank JustFlight for providng the press copy and we remind you that we were not influenced by this in our review that aims to be the most objective as possible.