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Old Dec 27, 2008, 06:25 PM
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Phoenix USB dongle with FMS and Flight Simulator X

I have PhoenixRC, and use its USB dongle to connect my DX7 transmitter to a Windows XP computer. The setup works perfectly.

But I'd also like to use my DX7 to use FMS and Flight Simulator X, both of which work with ordinary controllers. (In other words, I am not trying to circumvent any company's anti-piracy controls.)

Alas, my computer doesn't recognize that my DX7 is connected, unless I'm running PhoenixRC itself.

Is there a way to use the PhoenixRC USB dongle so other simulators can be run using a DX7?

-Lon
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Old Dec 28, 2008, 10:51 AM
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I just received an answer directly from the Phoenix support team. The answer itself is a bit of a disappointment: "You cannot use the USB cable for other programs as it is only designed to be used with Phoenix."

I have however located a $20 cable that is supposed to do what I hoped the Phoenix dongle would do: http://www.helihobby.com/html/fms_flight_sim.html
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Old Dec 28, 2008, 11:47 AM
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The link you provided includes the FMS simulator package with the cable. If you already have the simulator, you could buy the same cable from Ka Planes for $8:

http://www.ka-planes.com/inc/sdetail/714
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Old Dec 28, 2008, 12:56 PM
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The reason the phoenix interface only works with their own simulator is that it provides the security encryption of the signals coming from the TX that the software decodes. Other sims won't understand this encryption and thus won't work.
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Old Dec 28, 2008, 01:46 PM
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This is not the reason - Real Flight and FS One interfaces for example, while being also used for software protection are also valid Windows Game Pad devices and can be used to control any other game or simulator that requires such controller. It seems that this is marketing decision to limit the interface cable functionality.
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Old Dec 28, 2008, 02:43 PM
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I think we're both right - My explanation explains the technical reasons, your explains the marketing reasons
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Old Dec 28, 2008, 05:14 PM
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Mike: I should have waited just a bit before ordering. The $8 cable you linked to is the same as the $20 cable I ordered, before your message was posted. (And with tax and shipping, it came to $27!)

Skirtz and Malc: I agree that marketing must have been part of the reason that Phoenix decided to limit the use of its dongle to the Phoenix simulator. What I can't imagine, however, is what marketing benefit Phoenix gets from that decision. The Phoenix dongle can't be purchased separate from the software; and Phoenix makes all of its upgrades and new models available at no additional cost. It seems to me that Phoenix would want to market its product by promoting the fact that its dongle enables owners to use their transmitters as all-purpose Windows controllers. That would make the dongle more valuable, not less valuable. Am I missing something?

-Lon
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Old Dec 29, 2008, 08:10 AM
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Don't think you are missing anything to be honest Lon33.

Pretty sure its just that the Phoenix interface is a custom HID device - not a game controller. Probably alot more to do with program copy protection than any imagined "marketing".
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Old Dec 29, 2008, 09:00 AM
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Stan hit the nail on the head, you see the device is used as a means of protecting the software / package, in much the same way as the interface used by Reflex for XTR.

Personally I don't see that by adding a windows joystick functionality to the dongle would be a marketing benefit or make it more valuble. I mean I couldn't see any reason for wanting to run FMS when I have purchased a decent sim with excellent graphics and physics be it Phoenix or XTR
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