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I think DCS is trying to model two flashlights, a battery-powered pocket variety and the corded cockpit utility light. The former being white-only non-bright-adjustable independent of the airplane state and the latter being the other one.

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I remember discussion about cocpilt flashlight and someone said it works even without battery, so auto switching between flashlights dependeing on battery state is a non sense.

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F/A-18 has two lights. I'm going to call the above light "flashlight" distinct from the corded light which is officially called the "utility floodlight". To avoid confusion I will use these two terms carefully, flashlight to refer to the object pictured above and utility floodlight to refer to the aircraft-powered corded lamp mounted in the cockpit.

 

The flashlight is a simple on-off singular-intensity light which operates without airplane power. The utility floodlight is described in the flight manual section 2.6.2.7. This light has a white or green color option, various levels of intensity and is powered by the airplane. It can be dismounted from its stowed location

 

Anyway, right now both lights share a single power action called "Flashlight".  The utility floodlight uses the color and intensity actions. When power is not available the flashlight is used and while power is available the utility floodlight is activated. What's really confusing is that the two lights automatically switch based on power availability automatically. This can be demonstrated by joining an F/A-18 ramp start cockpit possibly at night and doing the following...

 

  • Press the Flashlight action key. A white light appears. Press the color toggle and intensity adjustment action keys. Notice they have no effect. This is because this is the flashlight.
  • Turn on the aircraft battery. The light appears to be unchanged however this is no longer the flashlight. This is the utility floodlight. It is impossible tell but the two lights have been switched the instant the battery was turned on.
  • Press the color toggle and intensity adjustment action keys. Notice they have an effect because you are changing the utility floodlight. Leave the utility floodlight in green mode for the next step.
  • Turn off the aircraft battery. The light has changed from green to white. This is because you instantly switched to using the flashlight the moment the utility floodlight stopped working without aircraft battery. As always when using the flashlight the utility floodlight action keys (color, intensity) have no effect.
  • Now here's the real confusing part, remember how we were using the utility floodlight in green mode (and possibly dimmmed) before we turned off the aircraft battery? Well it has completely forgotten that configuration.
  • Turn on the aircraft battery again. The light is fully bright and white but it is the utility floodlight now that power is again available. The utility floodlight always initializes at full intensity and white color when power is interrupted regardless of how it was last configured.

I think this is very confusing as the two lights are hard to tell apart and the shift from one to the other is seamless. Overall I think it would be better with a few changes:

  • Remember the color selection on the utility floodlight on power interruption. From what I can tell reading the color selection should persist until deliberately changed.
  • Give the flashlight and utility floodlight visibly different light patterns. Slightly different cone widths or edge effects or colors or something so white flashlight and white utility light don't look completely identical
  • Either remember the intensity selection of the utility floodlight over power interruptions or always initialize to full brightness without power interruptions. Having different behavior makes no sense. The manual says there is a button to turn the light on at full intensity directly. I don't understand if that's the only way to turn on the light or not.
  • Hide the model of the utility light 3D object when it is in use to show to the user that the pilot has picked up the utility floodlight in hand and is aiming it around the cockpit
  • Possibly make interacting with the utility light cockpit clickable for some or all features

But it's nice to have two different lights and probably best that they aren't treated fully independently which is just more keys to remember. When in normal use the fact that power interruption resets the utility floodlight configuration isn't a practical problem. It just takes a bit of poking to figure out what's going on.

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This is correct as is. 

 

It was decided this was the best option for our flashlight. 

 

thanks

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13-01067.jpg
F/A-18 has two lights. I'm going to call the above light "flashlight" distinct from the corded light which is officially called the "utility floodlight". To avoid confusion I will use these two terms carefully, flashlight to refer to the object pictured above and utility floodlight to refer to the aircraft-powered corded lamp mounted in the cockpit.
 
The flashlight is a simple on-off singular-intensity light which operates without airplane power. The utility floodlight is described in the flight manual section 2.6.2.7. This light has a white or green color option, various levels of intensity and is powered by the airplane. It can be dismounted from its stowed location
 
Anyway, right now both lights share a single power action called "Flashlight".  The utility floodlight uses the color and intensity actions. When power is not available the flashlight is used and while power is available the utility floodlight is activated. What's really confusing is that the two lights automatically switch based on power availability automatically. This can be demonstrated by joining an F/A-18 ramp start cockpit possibly at night and doing the following...
 
  • Press the Flashlight action key. A white light appears. Press the color toggle and intensity adjustment action keys. Notice they have no effect. This is because this is the flashlight.
  • Turn on the aircraft battery. The light appears to be unchanged however this is no longer the flashlight. This is the utility floodlight. It is impossible tell but the two lights have been switched the instant the battery was turned on.
  • Press the color toggle and intensity adjustment action keys. Notice they have an effect because you are changing the utility floodlight. Leave the utility floodlight in green mode for the next step.
  • Turn off the aircraft battery. The light has changed from green to white. This is because you instantly switched to using the flashlight the moment the utility floodlight stopped working without aircraft battery. As always when using the flashlight the utility floodlight action keys (color, intensity) have no effect.
  • Now here's the real confusing part, remember how we were using the utility floodlight in green mode (and possibly dimmmed) before we turned off the aircraft battery? Well it has completely forgotten that configuration.
  • Turn on the aircraft battery again. The light is fully bright and white but it is the utility floodlight now that power is again available. The utility floodlight always initializes at full intensity and white color when power is interrupted regardless of how it was last configured.
I think this is very confusing as the two lights are hard to tell apart and the shift from one to the other is seamless. Overall I think it would be better with a few changes:
  • Remember the color selection on the utility floodlight on power interruption. From what I can tell reading the color selection should persist until deliberately changed.
  • Give the flashlight and utility floodlight visibly different light patterns. Slightly different cone widths or edge effects or colors or something so white flashlight and white utility light don't look completely identical
  • Either remember the intensity selection of the utility floodlight over power interruptions or always initialize to full brightness without power interruptions. Having different behavior makes no sense. The manual says there is a button to turn the light on at full intensity directly. I don't understand if that's the only way to turn on the light or not.
  • Hide the model of the utility light 3D object when it is in use to show to the user that the pilot has picked up the utility floodlight in hand and is aiming it around the cockpit
  • Possibly make interacting with the utility light cockpit clickable for some or all features
But it's nice to have two different lights and probably best that they aren't treated fully independently which is just more keys to remember. When in normal use the fact that power interruption resets the utility floodlight configuration isn't a practical problem. It just takes a bit of poking to figure out what's going on.
Makes sense. Thanks for the lengthy explanation!
Cheers!

Sent from my MAR-LX1A using Tapatalk

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@Frederf it's even more confusing - when you switch the battery on, you have the utility light. And when you start first engine and generator kicks in it again switches of utility light and you have only flashlight avaible.

@BIGNEWY how on earth it can be correct when simple switchng a switch puts a flashlight into my hand or grabs it off my hand and puts utility light in? This didn't happen even in "Hot shots!" movie.
And this is not the best option if I can't change brightness or color of the light during flight. If you can't make two light mechanics just let us have the one with color and brightness change.

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