An Introduction to Flight Simulation - Computer Hardware

Choosing the right components

In this section, we will outline the hardware items you’ll need to get started in flight simulation: the different components that make up a PC System, their specific functions and some suggestions with regard to the optimum and minimum specifications. While this is not specifically aimed at one particular simulator, we have commented about some requirements needed for the new Microsoft Flight Simulator (MFS).


The brain, (or heart if you will) of any PC system is the Central Processing Unit (CPU), which, as in our own body, is essential for us to function. Currently, there are two main manufacturers of CPUs: Advanced Memory Devices (AMD) and Intel. They both produce a range of processors tailored to different requirements and budgets.

Intel CPUs 

i5 – The i5 series is now the lowest CPU capable of running MFS with acceptable frame rates.

Become a Premium Member to Read More

This is a premium article and requires an active Key.Aero subscription to view. You can also access it if you’re subscribed to one of our Key Publishing magazines.

I’m an existing member, sign me in!

I don’t have a subscription…

Why not join our community of aviation enthusiasts? Pick one of our introductory offers and access a wealth of world-class aviation content.