Instrument readability / Cockpit too dark / Eye Adaptation

Perhaps could Asobo/MS could add a cursor to set from a range of 0 auto adaptation (no transition, the outside and the internal cockpit would be seen in a equal and related light level) up to full auto adaptation (full current transition level allowed), so anyone could find its own taste on this part ?

Think you’re confusing things a bit here. The eye has two methods of adapting to brightness. The first is the size of the pupil which is fast. The second is sensitivity of the retina, which is indeed much slower. From wikipedia

“…it re-adjusts its exposure by adjusting the iris, which adjusts the size of the pupil. Initial dark adaptation takes place in approximately four seconds of profound, uninterrupted darkness; full adaptation through adjustments in retinal rod photoreceptors is 80% complete in thirty minutes.”

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Sorry, yes you are correct. I’ve edited the post. But still in either case the effect is not faster than the in-game exposure adjustment.

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Hello all.

Anybody that flies MSFS knows that the sim adjusts the brightness based on where your camera is pointed. But, during approaches, this is VERY hard to simulate. Why?

In real life, the pilot sometimes looks outside to see the runway, then sometimes he changes, looking at the PFD and speed, then chaning again to look to the runway. He focus on what he want to see. In the sim, we don’t land moving the camera. We land on a fixed camera placed on the Virtual Cockpit in which we can see the runway and the PFD at the same time. And the brightness adjustment that the sim makes is always give less focus on the runway. So if it’s NIGHTIME or if it’s daytime with CAVOK weather, the runway is so dark or so bright that you almost can’t see.

My question is: Is there any possibility to reduce this effect in the whole sim or turn it off during night time?

Look at these images:

1- Ready for taxi. Looking at the panel and ouside. This is my takeoff/landing/taxi/cruise camera. Can’t see nothing outside.

2- Looking outside. The darkness is completely gone. Now I can see details that I couldn’t see before just moving up a little bit my camera. How am I supposed to land like this?

I don’t find it realistic. Just wanted an option to turn it off or that it gets adjusted. Everybody knows that nights without moon are unrealisticaly dark in the simulator. Mixing this with that…

Whats your opinion on this? Any change of this getting repaired?



They are pretty different as you can’t see absolutely nothing on the first one. The nights without moon in MSFS are overly dark and you can notice it watching any of the billion videos on YouTube performing a takeoff or landing. What really bothers me is that any issue reported here in the forum that someone is trying to make the sim better, there’s at least 1 comment treating it normally like nothing is wrong. The sim is not perfect guys, there’s a lot missing and a lot of bugs yet. Regards.

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Fair enough, I apologize for my comment which was not actually helpful or productive.

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I am sick of this conversation as nothing happens. But his one takes the cake.

I don’t care about some fancy algorithms, as one user wrote: the bottom line is I can’t read instruments. It is even noticeable in vr. Unfortunately the situation is quite similar in X plane 12. Bit it is perfect in X plane 11.

I have a feeling that people that like this effect don’t really care what instruments show. They are just here for the gaming, not simulating.

I am using X plane 11 even though I have also 12 and fs. I just care more about flying then lookin at pretty scenery.


well, no offense, but there are thousands of others (me) who “simulate” very well than fly and that meanwhile almost 1500 hours and I never had problems with reading the instruments.
If you have ever been in a real cockpit - the problem with the “sunlight” is also there - so it is very much “part” of the simulation!
The illumination of MSFS and XP12 - also to the outside - is quite realistic - the fading effect more or less - that is debatable - but it is supposed to represent the effect of a sunlit cockpit - which it does partly well - on a PC screen probably not otherwise representable.
There are a number of tools (“ReShade”, Nvidia Filters) that can be used to help with this, and you can also set the “EyeAdaptation 1” entry in the “UserCfg” to “0” (as workaround). There should perhaps be an option in the settings, but I don’t think it’s right to turn off the effect completely (for others) just because you PERSONALLY don’t like it - and as you rightly pointed out - you can stay with XP11 !


Easy “partial” work around… better than nothing – or you can take your SunGlasses off !!



It is not just me personally, there are a lot of people complaining about this.

I will try reshade to see if it has desired effect.

Changing cfg file does nothing for me.

I am not saying to remove effect if some people like it. But isn’t it time Asobo does something about it? It is clearly an issue for some.

How come you never had problems with reading the instruments? Aren’t they dark for you? Is there some other setting you use or have adjusted your monitor?

My experience is that you cannot do much with adjusting monitor because if you improve visibility in certain area you lose it in other area.

all right - misunderstood then ! I don’t know to what extent this part of the global illumination can be “changed” - but if so then of course on the part of Asobo !

I own VR glasses but at the moment I don’t use them ( (I think it’s worse in VR, not now that you use that) - at the moment on 3x32" curved with TrackIr - for me it looks rather like this at the worst - so for my part actually readable (looks even worse on the screenshot had to scale down the “giant” picture a bit):

The blending effect before the last update was a bit strong - you could sporadically read the instruments badly - but I think it works at the moment!
I use standard settings for the screens and in the NvidiaFilters the options sharpen, AmbientLight, colorfullness (very discreet to scale down the colour tone) !
Cheers !

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Just my personal opinion:

My personal problem with the eye adaptation effect is this:

I am sitting in the cockpit of a real plane (or in a car), looking out the window.
My peripheral vision detects the instrument panel, but of course it’s darker.
I look down at the instrument panel (NOT moving my head, ONLY my eyes).
The instrument panel immediately “lights up” and I can read the instruments without any problems.

How does this happen in MSFS?
I am sitting in front of the monitor.
I look out the cockpit window.
My peripheral vision detects the instrument panel, but of course it’s darker.
I glance down at the instrument panel (with my eyes only).
What is happening?
Nothing, the instrument panel is as dark as before.
The program can’t detect my eye movement, of course, so I have to move the whole viewpoint in the cockpit - my “head” - downwards to read the instruments.
This is unrealistic.
(In other games this is also a problem: the program sets the eye adaptation to a fixed viewpoint, because of course it can’t do anything else)

This has caused me a lot of annoyance and discomfort (straining my eyes etc)

I use Nvidia Freestyle to work around this.
It took me hours to tune in three settings, which I have to change depending on the weather conditions, and the result is still not perfect. But at least my eyes aren’t leaking and I don’t have to assign separate buttons or keys to switch views in cockpit.

Indeed an on/off switch could be the solution, but as someone explained in this topic - if I remember correctly - this is not a simple task.

Peace, love and harmony, guys! :v:

Exactly my thinking! And you explained it perfect. This is why I say to the developers: don’t simulate my eyes, simulate the aircraft.

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Thanks, i think it is much worse in my case, don’t know yet why.

It might be important that you use tracker, this way the light adapts in the direction you a looking in.

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and we have this wish topic where we asking for an implementation that users can decide by itself to enable or disable it ( easier way than config edit ), or also adjust the effect with a slider.

Then each user can set it how he like it and we not need disussions about personal feeling of each human bean in the world :rofl: … But the amount of votes do a little bit stagnate…


I want a toggle to adjust or completely turn off eye adaptation since the userCFG does absolutely nothing and is simply a fake line of text, voted


I would like to invite you guys to take a look into this thread:

I also have a hard time trying to read the instruments due to the sim´s light representation.

BUT: getting instrument lights MUCH brighter helps me dramatically.
So i created this thread, trying to collect info, how to make instruments brighter, including sample screenshots.

Maybe this is of interest for some of you too.


I wish the eye adaption in the usercfg.opt actually worked when disabled.
it’s so darn annoying to have everything overly bright outside of the cockpit.

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make sure you have PRESET CUSTOM

Version 1.1.0
Preset Custom