Night lighting in MSFS overly soft and blurry?

I mentioned that I tried that and it kept my resolution at 5120x1440 even though it showed 2560x1440 as the selected resolution and kept the window as super ultrawide. It’s OK, I’m not gonna get trying to test as I think it’s been confirmed already anyhow. :slightly_smiling_face:

As you can see in this video, msfs 2020 is from xp 11 looks much better. but as you climb higher the fs2020 gets much worse. It’s like you’re flying over a yellow potato field.

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Nice video, shows how much better MSFS is over xplane. No comparison.

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Yeah because floating red blobs of light are sooo realistic :rofl: First off, this is default X-Plane. There are low cost and also free plugins that make the visuals so much better. Second of all, this thread has already established the issue IS AFFECTING ULTRAWIDE AND ULTRA HD RESOLUTIONS. The lighting in MSFS looks perfectly fine in 1080p. I never had a problem with night lighting in MSFS when I first started using it. At some point an update made the night lights soft fuzzy and bloated. It’s a bug, it’s not that I don’t like their night lighting overall.
They do however have to fix the mystery floating lights over certain areas that are just hovering in the sky. Try to do the Aspen landing challenge to see an example.

Really? IMO neither is perfectly accurate. But there are definitely things to like and dislike in both sim’s night light representation.

I agree with @Crunchmeister71, XP’s looks very sharp and photograph like. Yet in some places, XP seems too dark. There also seems to be no variety in the lighting in XP. On the other hand, the way night light is generated in XP is better. The lights on roads and highways come from lightposts, not random floating orbs of light. The light from traffic on roads is also from moving traffic, you can see the light being cast from moving yellow headlights and red taillights.

In MSFS, there is a lot more variety in night light in terms of brightness and color temperature and that actually provides an overall plausible look. But on arterial roads and highways the lighting is too bright. MSFS implements road and highway lights in a different manner. I remember one of the devs mentioning during a QnA that they have generated data about night lighting which gives them temperature and brightness information. I believe they have a snapshot of the planet at nighttime on which they run imaging algorithms to figure out the color temperature of lights in different regions of the planet. Using that data they generate those floating light orbs to cast light in those regions. This leads to one major side effect - the highway lights are too bright. Why? Because the orbs on the highway are generated based on the overall light there which came from the traffic headlights and taillights. That is why you see static red lights every few meters on highways, which is very unrealistic.

But yeah, MSFS gets more points for plausibility, not for being realistic.


But in X-Plane 11 there are mods for night lights, and you can edit the light bulbs properties also (brightness, size, halo, illumination range etc).

This is the night light tweaks that I am currently using for XP11… See how it significantly enhances the night lighting there.

The day Asobo updates MSFS to have night lighting bulbs small and as sharp as this, would be one of the happiest day in my life!


Don’t forget that video is showing the PREVIOUS night lighting that we have in MSFS (release version until update-4). It does not look like that anymore since update 5.

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The sepia effect is definitely better now, which was really bad in previous updates.
but the issue with 4K displays and ultrawide displays still remain, with stretched lights.

I personally use a 4K display and light sources look very blurry kinda bloated.
But overal the night lighting looks better with it being randomized a bit more.
I hope Seb finds a way to fix the blurry lights issues tho

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I’m running MSFS in 3440x1440 and see the exact same issue with night lighting. Actually close in, the lights are nice and sharp, but further away just bloated dots, way too big. They even change color when you zoom in and out. Look at red lights in wide angle, then zoom in… they become paler, zoom out and the red intensifies again. And the blob size remains almost constant in all zoom levels.I think it is not well done at the moment.
Anybody else having a live weather issue again? Can’t get live weather to work after last update.


And there are still many other issues too. RWY lighting is also not so good. The size of the TWY lights is the same in the foreground as in the background, see the screenshot…

(And yes, the other sim does indeed do a better job on the RWY’s and TWY’s!). Approach and edge lights are way too bright. Aircraft taxi and landing lights are way too dim on the TWY and RWY. It is awfully dark on the RWY.

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And in the other sim the RWY looks super at night, but closer in there is a bit too much bloom. However there is a difference in size of the lights that are near and those that are far… Just a screenshot from higher up… Vehicle lights on the roads are also much more realistic.!!

The apron lighting (masts) is way too bright aswell in the other sim.

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And here is MSFS again… all lights same size and brightness…

And one more pic from the rival…

I can actually see where I am taxiing to… and look at the centreline lights and edge lights… way more realistic, they are larger closer in and emit more light ( a touch too much bloom though), further out that changes. An believe me, I know what I am talking about, I have worked in ATC for more than 25 years, I know what airport lighting looks like at night…
Now compare the TXY lights to the MSFS pic (the first one).
I am not picking on MSFS, I think it is absolutely awesome for VFR! The jets are however still sooo buggy, it is a shame… When flying on Vatsim I always revert to the other sim, Airbus (Toliss) is just so much better… FMS works the way it should…


For me, if I turn off BLOOM in settings, it makes the night lights better…less blurry.

You might want to support this:
Night lighting issues still present - The community solutions - #719 by CptLucky8

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Already voted.


Thanks, I’ll give it a try.

Can I also suggest that everyone logs a zen desk ticket. That way we get a better chance of this being prioritised for a fix.

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