Instrument readability / Cockpit too dark

I find that if the view of the panel is moved using my assigned keys or the mouse , and the panel is more than two thirds the panel on the screen , it just seems to automatically brighten up.
I don’t know why but the instruments are easily readable.
If the sky is about 50/ 50 with the panel it looks like the screenshot in the earlier post.

Currently, as a temporary work around, if you force Eyeadaptation 0, then the effect of outside lighting, causing a simulated Pupil dilation, and not being able to read your panel, is greatly reduced.

There is still a slight (realistic) dialation, and a slight reduction in Panel brightness, but this is quite realistic with EyeAdaptation 0 (as opposed to default 1)

Note: Streamed via OBS. so OBS video setting adjusted to try to match what is seen on my Monitor. Close, but a little washed out via OBS. Monitor is a lot clearer.

These are so many factors that affect what you appear to see, on your monitor !!!

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How does this setting affect the overall brightness? because there is still the case of everything being too bright/washed out when its clear skies…

Its a compromise, of adjusting Video card / Monitor Brightness, contrast & Gamma, and your room lighting etc etc.
This is why, it is being suggested that there should be different user controlled sliders to adjust the lighting Inside the plane, as well as outside.

Note: This was possible to do in FSX, with some difficulty, where you had access to the Shaders.

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Its a shame that people have to jump through hoops to sort out something that shouldnt be a problem in the first place. With 120 votes I hope its enough to a) get visibility and traction and b) implement a fix to sort this out.


I’ve just discovered this topic thanks to a Q&A question.

I don’t believe I have a solve for your question, but related to it, here are 2 topics directly related to this you might want to check out to see if you agree with:

[BUG/FEATURE] Implement a metering system better suited for VR

[BUG/FEATURE] Provide Color Space, Tone Mapping, CAS Shader Strength and post-processing effects controls in VR

The first one in particular is exactly one of the reasons cockpits can be too dark and the external view too bright. If you were shooting these highly contrasted cockpit scenes IRL with a camera, you’ll end up having to choose what you’re exposing the overall picture with. It is no different, except with a typical Reflex camera you can choose spot metering (center only), weighted average (a convolution over a pre-determined set of points), and even more sophisticated algorithms can now sample hundreds of points and use IA to decide.

Here is an example of different metering modes in a modern camera:

With FS2020, like with any other game, the metering is most likely averaging out the entire render frame in order to set the “gray” point. In such very difficult scenes where there are strong contrasted zones, the algorithm has to draw a line (so to speak) and in this case, the average is not always the best for a cockpit. It is a simple way to do this (averaging the entire frame) and it is working good usually when you’re in an open space shooter for example (entering/leaving buildings etc…), but it is not suited for cockpit views in my opinion, like it is demonstrated in this topic and many others.

A nice page with photo examples to see it all:
Which is best? Spot, Center Weight, or Matrix metering? :: Digital Photo Secrets

NB: even if these are listed in the VR sub-forum because this is where users have the least control over any form of post-processing or calibration (unlike in 3D with the limited yet available adjustment options via direct monitor calibration and post-processing effects like ReShade), the two topics I’ve listed above are equally suited and needed for 3D as well. I believe if MSFT is deciding to implement these in any case, it wouldn’t make any sense to limit this to VR only anyhow, and it won’t because it is purely pixel Shader code related equally applicable for both.


Thanks @CptLucky8

As a work around, I have found that altering EyeAdaptation 1 to 0 or even -1, seems to eliminate this unwanted effect, so, at least for me, it is no longer an issue.

… Although it would be nice if there was a better solution than running a script each time MSFS starts, to programmatically edit (Hack ? ) configuration files .

The list grows … of these crude edits, necessary at the moment to achieve satisfactory operation.

ie the last 3 Options in the World maps display options, that are never saved, so you have to always turn them back on again, each time you use the World Map.

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If, and this is my personal taste on this and not meant sarcastic in any way, we could also have dynamic bokeh (subconscious view interpretation) + vignette (eye squeezing), less strong pupil dilation plus constriction (by the current ‘metering’). I’m happy and are able to call it eye adaptation (you would need eye tracking though).

I would do like a sunglasses icon then though.

-1 works? That’s unexpected…

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Yes … I was surprised as well … but if you don’t try things, you may never know.

I need to go back and check the difference between 0 and -1, but after I set it to -1, I “THINK” it may have improved the situation even more ?

Need to do a side by side comparison … with screen shots,

or Now, using -1,

"if it works, don’t mess with it anymore"

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What you’re looking for is also known as Varifocal Lenses. It is promising because it solves to problems in one: focus distance and vergence. But I only know FB is working on this tech for years and there is still no product available yet.

Pupil dilation/contriction is just an adjustable variable. In XP11, it is a dataref you can already play with… but I’ve discussed about their “eye adaptation” with their lead developer on a few occasions and it is not working as expected. This would be cool indeed, you could simulate slow recovery from hypoxia (along with vigneting)!

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Yeah, where the concept is “simplistic” in real world, the translation to fictive is a major challenge as you continuously need to calculate distances and keep it seamless. Allthough the link with varifocus can be made. I should have added distortion and dynamically chosen object removal (focus culling) :grin:

True, this is also where your mentioned metering modes come into play.

I can definitely imagine, it’s not just a simple one factor solution.

Edit: (I’m derailing, appologies…)

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At this point in time, it would be cool if we could just read the Instrument on the Instrument panel, in daylight, without having to put all the Instrument Panel lights up to full.


Has anyone whos done the -1 got any comparison screenshots? before/after?

I’ll attempt to make a Video Comparison over the weekend. Seeing the changes Dynamically in Video is far more informative than some still screenshots.

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Thank you and much appreciated!

I can just about handle the number of other problems the sim has but this one thing totally ruins the visual aspect for me and was so much of a pain that it got me to join the forums.

Looking forwards to seeing it and thanks again.

Did you ever manage to get around to doing this?

No, currently too many other things are not working, or giving strange results.
Both EyeAdaptation and Fringe seem not to be having any affect now if I change them.

Today, with WU6, I did a complete re-install,

If that fixes there parameters to start having an effect again , I’ll be able to make the video comparison.

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I fly only single engine classic/vintage/antique planes and suffer from the problem originally described in this thread (before it got somewhat off topic) – insufficient illumination of the instrument panel when flying with a single monitor. Is there somewhere I can vote on this as an issue that needs to be addressed? Better yet, a customizable HUD where you can place “steam” instruments, and control it’s brightness and transparency.

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There’s a “vote” button at the top of the thread.

On the assumption that MSFS-2020 is an upgrade to MSFS-X, please restore the ability to adjust the instrument panel lighting to the best contrast and brightness for your viewing situation.

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