Panel Flying Impressions
How do I feel about EFIS systems and panel layouts now after flying my RV-10?
Updated 12/3/2006 @ 177 flight hours
Updated 2/28/2009 @ 440+ flight hours

Note: On many of my travel flights you can see the functionality of the Chelton Screens.

Initially I had trouble coming to terms with where to locate items for both ergonomics, visibility, redundancy, and function.  After having flown behind my panel for a while now, I can give a report as to how the layout and some systems are working.  I will tell you that it is very important to get yourself a full-size mockup built, before you go and cut your panel.  I did mine on cardboard with images upsized to actual size taped on, so that I would have a good idea of the view and reach required to all instruments, while sitting in my semi-completed airplane.  This helped tremendously and for me it proved to be the difference between success and failure in a layout.  Here is a report back on some of my previous concerns:

Should the EFIS screens be an over/under arrangement, or side-by-side?
Initially I had leaned towards doing an over/under arrangement on my main pilot-side EFIS screens.  This was due to flying a 6-pack for years and being used to having the DG/HSI always directly below the attitude indicator.  I was definitely concerned that the screens being side-by-side wasn't "standard" and that something would be harder to do with it that way. What I have found is that I was way off base by worrying.  In reality, I'm very glad I went side-by-side, and now I see that in the RV-10 it's probably preferable.  One of the larger reasons is that it's an easier visual scan.  All of my primary stuff is on the same horizontal plane.  Whereas I have viewed a dynon in glaring sunlight in the past and had a hard time reading the screen from a cross-cabin angle, I can actually see my Chelton screens in bright sunlight from any angle.  Also, the RV-10 panel has a couple of things that help push you towards side-by-side, and they make a difference in the outcome.  First, the panel is lower, far lower, than a Cessna panel...remember how high some of those are?  Well, if your panel is low, you don't want your panel scan to be looking way DOWN all the time, so expanding to a lowered panel so you can still do over/under gives you a real low scan.  If you stick with stock panel height, your scan stays a little higher.  Also, the sticks and stickgrips (I have infinity but all would be the same) move far enough that you can and will hit the panel with the stickgrips, and having a lowered panel will introduce even more troubles with that arrangement.  As it is, you will want to cut your stick as low as possible with most grips, but if you have a lower panel, you will need to cut and re-weld your sticks so the grip is tipped back and won't hit the panel.  So as it turned out, I'm now sold on the side-by-side for the RV-10...and would do the same thing if I did it over again.  Also, initially, the panel design is much simpler, as you just have to make room with the 2 outer ribs, but you don't have to lower the panel and do any other structural work.  Working UNDER the panel is much easier, too, as even the stock panel can be a pain to lay under...and trust me, if you do any of your own panel wiring or maintenance of items, you'll appreciate NOT having lowered your panel.    Regarding the visual scan on a panel, I find that even though it's not a very low viewing angle in MY panel layout, it's still much more un-natural viewing the lowest gauges than it is viewing the instruments that are in the center or top half of the panel.  If you're flying an EFIS with all of the info on screen, I think it'll be easier to glance sideways to view things than up and down...especially if you use bifocals, which I do not, but it's something to think about.  I am glad I saved the hassles of redesigning my panel to make it lower, and since I used the included aluminum panel, I saved cost as well.  I did get the chance to fly an over/under system, and indeed I did find it both less comfortable to look down lower to the scree, and to reach past the stick to the screen, than when the screens are mounted more in line with a higher viewing angle.  In addition, as you get further below the glareshield, you get more *glare* on the screens, and they wash out much worse.  Just more to think about.  I also believe that having the integration that I do, I made better use of space than my previous panel designs that I had scrapped along the way.  As for my backup gauges, even though they are right below the EFIS, they're harder to keep in your scan once you get using an EFIS, because they're low on the panel and there's nothing else down there that requires attention.

Should I buy a 3-screen system or 2 screen system?
This one is without any doubt in my mind...A 3 screen system is well worth the extra cost and effort.   First of all, during my initial flights and throughout all of my startup processes, I like(d) having my engine instruments in the center screen.  When you're worried about temps going high, or oil pressures coming up, it's great to have that right near you.  Being able to flip my engine instruments to the far screen and have a full-size map is also handy.  I don't think I'd be happy to compromise and do the split-screen-EFIS thing either, because you lose screen real-estate to various functions.  I have not found any reason to switch my main PFD screen from anything other than PFD attitude mode, but I find I have tons of reasons to flip modes on the other screens.  Since I started taking passengers, I've flown many people other than myself, and given many pilots rides.  Not including 2 of the kids, I have had EVERY one of them feel that it was very nice for them to have the attitude display and associated information in front of them when they were given the chance to take the stick.  My wife is also very happy to have the map screen on her side, as she often enters airport info, looks at the long-range weather on the datalink display, logs data, and other various things during some flights.  In addition, being able to spend time as co-pilot with her own EFIS has encouraged her and turned her from having no interest in becoming a certified pilot, to actually considering doing it some day.  In short, I would not at all be as happy with my panel without the flexibility that having the 3 screens gives, and I consider it of core importance to my panel.  Oh, one more benefit....on the Chelton if you get terrain or obstruction warnings, my center screen will automatically switch to the map mode and display and highlight the threat.  Very coon, and nice to have 3 screens for.  Now, what if you have some other EFIS?  Well, still, consider all 3 modes being important simultaneously.  Get an EFIS, another MFD screen, and and EIS (Engine Information System) screen, and arrange them so that all 3 are pilot-visible...perhaps the Engine monitor should be the one furthest away or least perfectly arranged.  Then you will have all data on the screen at one time.  Then, think about what you have for equipment and try to stick with integrated components.  i.e. if you get one brand of EFIS, consider using that same equipment for all screens.  It will give you better integration in that if the pilot changes waypoints or info, it will flow to the co-pilot screen.  Many people do things like put in 2 screens for the pilot and then stick a cheap Dynon on the other side of the panel. Well, this is fine for backup, but it really serves you poorly from an integration perspective if the unit is to have navigation capabilities.  You can still do that small cheap Dynon...but buy a primary system you trust and get the most out of it that you can from a functionality perspective...get 3 screens.
If you NEVER plan to have a co-pilot fly, it gets easier as you don't have to worry so much about that integration, but it does become more limiting if you may have someone fly from that other side.

Will I be able to fly behind an EFIS?
Again, here I had a huge relief.  Not only does it take almost zero time to be able to fly precisely holding airspeed and altitude on the EFIS, despite the tape readout style, but I found that all of the other miscellaneous information on the main screen is equally as easy to follow.  Adjusting to the EFIS is easy.  Adjusting back to steam gauges would not be quite as easy.  I find that the whole concept of panel "scan" is changed.  I can now fly with less head-down time, because you're not looking as far for the information when you need it.  One real surprise with the EFIS was that with it's precision, and the nice display of the Chelton, I find I can hold altitude and fly better during steep turns, even when doing the turns on instruments.  Unusual attitude training during Instrument training is a piece of cake too.  One of my biggest surprises is with the SVS (Synthetic Vision System) type display of the Cheltons.  Prior to flying this plane, I had almost always felt "the leans", or vertigo when in any bumpy clouds.  As it turns out, having that larger EFIS screen with synthetic vision has basically eliminated that feeling for me.  I don't understand all the how's and why's, but that spacial orientation is just so much better and I no longer feel it.  Flying gets easier in general.  So no, no concerns at all about EFIS flying.

Should I go all-electric, or use a Vacuum system?
I didn't change my opinion at all from the original.  I see no need for the extra weight and un-reliability, and construction hassles gaind from adding a vacuum system and vacuum gauges. It's hard on them in the cold weather, they wear out much sooner, the pumps aren't reliable, and so on.  If you have a well-designed electrical system and use some sort of Aux battery (or instrumetns with built-in battery backup, AND make sure you include backup instruments), I see no reason for a Vacuum system.  I do, however, like my standard airspeed indicator and altimeter as backup.  I do think it's nice to consider the roung gauges as backups, because they aren't electrically dependent.  Perhaps a TruTrak ADI makes a great stand-alone backup in the 2.25" size too, because you can get it with internal GPS and battery backup, and it reads ground track.  Makes for a great backup instrument.

Is the E-Bus and Aux battery worth the hassle?
I really believe it is.  My E-Bus design got out there on the complex end when it came to wiring it, but when it comes to using it, I love the way it works.  The Aux battery is very handy for both engine start time, and when you're testing or playing with your instrumetns with the airplane off.  It saves you from draining your main battery.  My startup procedure is like this:  BATT/ALT ON, Aux Batt ON, E-Bus Alternate Feed ACTIVE.  Now my EFIS and EIS, and my MFD with the Engine gauges all come to life...and, since they're powered by the Aux battery, they don't reboot when cranking the engine.  Next, ignition source ALT.  This ensures that my lightspeed ignition is running on the Aux battery too, to prevent starter kickback if the voltage drops too low during engine cranking.  Now, START ENGINE.  Once it's running, it's E-BUS Alternate feed OFF, Ignition source MAIN, Avionics Master ON.  That brings to life the rest of my avionics, and after turning the NAV and STROBE lights on, I'm ready to roll.  So, there's benefit during engine start, there's benefit during instrument testing or preflight time, and there's benefit if I lose my main alternator and/or battery.  I'm very happy with the system, and although it took me 3 or 4 flights to get into the swing of which items are started on and off, it's now automatic.  Don't underestimate the importance of a completely isolated battery for your EIS or some other equipment during starting!!!  In my above scenario, I can boot up my EFIS screen and my WSI weather, and view approaching weather before engine start.  I can load flight plans into the systems, and I can turn my system to the Engine Monitor screen during startup to verify oil pressure is coming up, and things like that.  If you do not have an ISOLATED Aux battery, you risk corruption and damage from rebooting systems at bad times, and you will with many components or EFIS's, cause it to reboot.  This will also delay you on the ground as most EFIS's that have reliability checking built in will need to go through a self-test and calibration procedure prior to moving.  If you have an isolated Aux battery to run these systems on, you can fire them up and get them working, crank the engine, and then once it's running you have very little you need to wait for before you can taxi.

Should I have a standby alternator?
I still think it's a good idea.  I'm very happy with my Aux. Battery setup, so the motivation is far less to add a standby alternator, and I probably wouldn't if my only choice was the expensive B&C system (I don't feel the SD-8 is large enough to handle the task).  But, if Plane-Power comes out with theirs and it is reasonably small and works well, and I can add it without too much effort, I'll be adding that to the plane later.  In my particular situation though, the value is perhaps questionable.  My main battery is the Odyssey PC925 to give better cranking power, but that also provides a longer runtime if the alternator dies.  Additionally, once I'm on my "backup" system if the main battery needs to be shut off, I have about an hour of time with my primary gauges (my main EFIS and nav equipment), to get on the ground.  Well, the RV-10 is a fast plane, and I just feel that I have such good runtime with the systems I have that I should be able to go directly to an airport, fly an approach, and get it down well within an hour.  A standby would let you stretch that time out, but SHOULD you?  If you have a failure that is bad enough to take out your alternator and primary battery, you should probably be on the ground a.s.a.p.  My Aux battery will allow me to do that.  Continuing the flight with a known bad alternator is a ridiculous idea in IFR conditions, and perhaps not a totally wise idea any any conditions.  Just buy quality parts up front and you have much less to worry about.

Should I use an integrated engine monitor, or a separate one?
To me, this is another no-brainer.  If you use the Chelton, buy one of the integratable EIS systems.  You'll absolutely be glad you have 3 screens and can display your EIS data on it.  If you use the GRT, get GRT's EIS too for the same reasons.  The AFS engine monitor and Electronics International MVP-50 monitors are both fantastic, and are some of the most feature filled available.  All of these make a great EIS to feed into the Chelton for engine data.  If you have Cheltons, consider using 3 screens and you can save lots of money on the EIS and buy the one from Grand Rapids Technology...or, you can spend more and get one of the other more "pretty" ones.  In the case of the AFS, you can get it as an EFIS/EIS, which would give some system redundancy, but it would never be as integrated from a functionality perspective, so for the AFS you may consider going with the "mini" version, and still adding another main EFIS screen of the same brand as the pilot side, for the co-pilot.  So there are 3 options to feed the Chelton engine data. The GRT is the absolute lowest price point and I find it works great.  The MVP-50 is the highest, but it works today and works well.  The ACS would come in the middle somewhere and be nice too.  That said, I'm really not missing much with the GRT EIS, and it was a lot less money.  It just lacks features like flap/trim position indication, but otherwise provides all the other functionality required.

Should I use round gauges or a 2nd EFIS as backup?
Here it's a bit of personal preference.  I think either would be fine.  I'm not one to trust the Dynon, only for the reason that it requires your pitot/static system to be working and connected or your attitude information isn't accurate.  Other than that, a Dynon may make a good backup system.  In my panel, I think I spent less and am happy with the round gauges that don't rely on anything.  I've used the TruTrak Turn-N-Bank (which was great), and am now using the TruTrak 2.25" ADI.  Both are good.  I'd be comfortable with just the TNB, and it's much easier to mount and find space for, but the ADI gives additional redundancy options with GPS and battery backup.  If you hear anything negative about the ADI, and how it will roll level if you hold it in a bank long enough, rest assured that it functions different on a bench than it will in the plane when it has all of the G-loadings present.  The ADI does a pretty good job providing you with the flight info you need.

What are good locations for switches?
I think that lower switch panel is great for most of the switches.  I like the layout that I have in general, with my masters and keyswitch an E-Bus switches all up on the panel, but all the other stuff on the lower panel.  It will also make it easier to add and change future switches around if you put them on the lower panel, and especially if you add an additional strip of 1.5" x .063 aluminum to that switch panel.  It acts as a cover that can be easily pulled and re-drilled or re-labeled as needed, and it makes your whole panel flush from top to bottom.  Don't underestimate this, as later in life you may find things you want to add or change, and having an easily replaceable switch panel can be a great help.

Should I use breakers or fuses?
I am very happy with what I have.  My theory is, if it's something that you may want to pull in flight, use a breaker.  Things like Autopilots, Trim, Flaps...stuff like that you don't want to have running uncontrolled.  It's also nice to be able to pull power on your main avionics sometimes.  But, for lighting, and other accessories, like my WSI weather, entertainment power, encoder, and that sort of thing, I'm happy to have that on a fuse. If sized properly it should never blow unless there's a real problem, and if there's a real problem, you don't want to reset a breaker anyway.  To me, a breaker is more of a rarely-used switch.  One important note:  If you have ANY items that control flight surfaces or are critical to flight, you want them on a breaker.  This means TRIM, FLAPS, Ignition System (if you use an EI like I do), and things of that nature.

Should I buy an AOA gauge?
I don't have any disagreement that AOA instruments are nice and can improve safety.   That said, if they were very cheap I'd put one in, but with what I have, I don't see a lot of point.  My Chelton calculates AOA to about 2-3mph accuracy, and it already voice warns me about stall, terrain, and such.  Having an AOA also barking at me doesn't do much added good, and I haven't thus far found any reason to add this plane or all that I've flown.  Again though, I think AOA is a good thing and I don't disagree with having it as long as the cost doesn't prevent you from buying something else that might be more useful.  To date, I find that I'm just happy I didn't spend the extra money on it.  For aerobatic aircraft who are flying "on the edge" all the time, an AOA may be more important, but if you can fly and approach to land and hold airspeeds without stalling, there really isn't a lot of benefit in a cross-country cruiser like the RV-10.

How many AMPS does she draw?
I've only looked hard at this one time, but it looks like I'm drawing about 28 amps without landing lights and maybe 34 or so with them.  (I have dual HID's that are around 3A each)  This is during daylight, so no interior or panel lighting turned on.  I'll try to update the numbers later.

Should I get a GNS480, 430/530, or SL-30/40 for my COM2?
This is a tough question.  I still think that if you're going to add an expensive Nav/Com/GPS, you should consider the GNS480.  But, since they're hard to get now, the 430W is an acceptable substitute.  The GNS480 is the most capable system for IFR use, once you learn how to use it, and the 430W is more of a very enhanced VFR GPS with approach capability, to many people.  I'm glad I have the 480,  but I don't know what's the "best" way.  The remote-mount Freeflight or Chelton WAAS GPS would take up less panel space, and actually integrate better and add some additional functionality to the Chelton, but the on-screen display and traffic on the GNS480 is nice and it serves as a total stand-alone backup and makes you legal for any approach too.  I think if you have a Chelton system, it gets to be a tough choice as to what's a better way to go.  I've used my GNS480 for running side-by-side flight plans, for grabbing my ATIS/AWOS, and viewing traffic, but rarely flown an approach on it yet.  The Chelton is so much easier to fly approaches with and the flight planning is so much better, than the ANY of the others, they get relegated to the background.  This is why using one of the remote-mount WAAS GPS's is attractive, because you can now have Gamma 3 WAAS LPV capability totally integrated with the Chelton system, whereas done any other way, you really should be loading the approach TOO on the other navigator, even if you fly it on the Chelton.  With Cheltons, a person can get a hugely capable system with just an SL-30 and SL-40 combo, if you add the freeflight or Chelton GPS.  I did fly an ILS and compare the needles between the GNS480's CDI and the SL-30's Chelton-displayed CDI....both were dead on accurate, and in 440+ hours, I've never had a hiccup out of the built-in GPS on my Chelton's AHRS.

Should I use Push-Pull or Throttle Quadrant?
I'm a quadrant fan. It looks nice, wasn't hard to install, and my personal opinion is that I can get the Manifold pressure and RPM tuned in more closely using the quadrant than the vernier push-pulls.  (The standard throttle cable isn't vernier)  I found my 5 hours in N220RV to be frustrating with the throttle/prop controls.  It could have been the EIS in that plane had processing lag, because my EIS is very quick to respond to changes in RPM and MP, but I still feel the sensitivity of that well made quadrant is better.  Also, with a longer lever moving a shorter cable throw, it makes sense that it wouldn't be too bad.  I've not had to engage the friction lock yet either.  Other people have noted that vernier throttle cables are not allowed in formation flying, and that a quadrant makes it easier to see the exact control position.  There will still be some who prefer push-pulls, and I say "great, go with it", but don't expect it to be smoother, or even as smooth, as the quadrant.  I don't know if it's the cables or quadrant, but this one works exceptionally better than others I've used.

Should I get an external CDI for my NAV2?
Well, if you get the GNS480, you may as well.  It's not that much extra money and it gives you a fully certified GPS system capable of flying a WAAS approach and an ILS. Will you get much use out of it?  Probably not, if you have a Chelton system.  I do think it's a nice thing to have on NAV2 though.  Even if you have a Nav 2, it can be a nice addition for backup purposes.  It's just that with today's EFIS's, it will likely be just that...a backup.

Do I need a Flap Position Indicator on the panel?  How about Trim?  And rudder trim?
Flaps, No.  There is no trouble on the -10 viewing the flaps and telling which flap setting you're on.  You can certainly put one in, but with only 2 notches of flaps plus relflex position available, it doesn't make too much sense to worry about it.  If you have an EFIS that will display position, great.  If not, I'm not sure it's worth the effort.  It's an easy over-shoulder check, and you can definitly feel flap position in how the airplane feels as they deploy.  Trim, yes...don't put in an electric trim without trim indicators....elevator and aileron, or sure, and rudder optionally.  I have not found trim indication for rudder to be a necessary thing.

Boy that GRT EIS screen is ugly, should I hide it, or panel mount it?
I thought it was ugly too.  Turns out it's kind of handy to have on the panel, and it has tons of info on it.  Just buy the nice trim plane from SteinAir and you'll be happy and be over it soon psychologically.  It is very readable from a distance too, so it is actually nice to have.

Do you need Aileron trim, or not?  Where should I mount my switches?  What about Ruder Trim?
Yes, Aileron Trim is worth it.  The RV-10 exhibits quite a bit of imbalance in aileron as loads and fuel supply change...more than I thought it would, and more than my previous planes I've flown.  It has longer tanks that are less "deep" front to rear.  I didn't think I'd need it, but bought it just in case.  My old Beech didn't need it at all.  The -10 will benefit from it...definitely. Sure, you can fly with the autopilot and it won't matter as much, but you may as well take some of the pressure off your AP servos too.   After 200+ hours, I finally added rudder trim, but I'm kicking myself for not adding it earlier.  It is a very simple system, doesn't cost a lot to install, and really makes those long X/C flights more comfortable.  I find that a trim block does work, but since it only works perfectly at one speed, I get too much correction on descent, and too little in lower speed cruise.  Add rudder trim before you paint and pull your tail wires!  As for switches, don't bother with a panel mounted trim switch for anything but rudder.  You'll want the aileron trim and elevator trim on your stick grips. My panel switch for elevator trim has been used test it.  

What functions should I put on my stick switches?
On my infinity sticks, I put a Coolie Hat with Aileron/Elevator trim, a pushbutton screen swap for the center Chelton on the Left Stick, and the Right Chelton on the Right stick (I do not have the remote switch kit yet though, so it's not functional), I have the EFIS mute as the pinky button.  The Trigger is the PTT switch.  The Thumb button is the AP disconnect and Control Wheel Steering button.  The (on)-off-(on) momentary toggle flips the frequencies on COM1 when up and COM2 when down.  Every one of these functions I find useful, and I think will be very nice to have.  The EFIS mute is indespensible, as is the CWS/AP disconnect button.  I'm not for having flaps on the stick...not necessary, and possibly unsafe.  I also have many of the functions (most just GROUND to activate) run through a panel switch that allows me to disconnect a single combined ground on the co-pilot side that lets me disable the co-pilot from running the trim, or frequency flip-flops.  Keeps the kids from messing with things accidentally.

Do I need a trim speed control system?
I really think this will be a necessary thing on the elevator trim, but not even desierable on the aileron.  I installed the "Safety Trim" system after flying a long time without, and I'm trilled with that added benefit.  One time during the flyoff, I had a binder on my lap, which rested on the trim switch just for a second.  IMMEDIATELY the plane shot up in a climb and I had to quickly figure out that it was the trim and re-trim it back.  When you're in cruise, you have to only very quickly and lightly tap the elevator trim, or you'll overshoot. Try it yourself, but I think the elevator trim is so powerful that it's over-sensitive to the point of being dangerous if you accidently hold the button too long or bump it with a chart, or binder like I did.  I'll be adding it to the elevator.  I previously had ray-allen relays, but also had relay failure, so a while later I got motivated and added Safety-Trim.  At this point I think it should be a standard item on all RV-10s.  On my flights to demo the RV-10 to other pilots, I've demonstrated the elevator trim speed to most of them.  On my most recent demo flight however, the co-pilot tested it before I had a chance to warn him, and he noted at 145Kts IAS that it was VERY sensitive.  You can get over 4000fpm of climb and descent, and pull 2 or more G's, with just one full second of high-speed trim in cruise.  Safety trim fixes that.  Also, I have a flap and airspeed switch on the Safety trim, so taking the flaps out of Reflex, OR flying below 100kts will put me to normal speed trim, so that is an important benefit as well.

Is the GTX330 with Mode S TIS worth it, or not? What about the Gov't getting rid of it?
All I can say is, that's a hell of a lot of cool traffic functionality for not all that much of an increase in cost over a regular transponder.  Be aware that the phase out for TIS is SCHEDULED for a 10-year phase-out.  That's IF the Government keeps the schedule.  The people that pass up on Mode S for 5 years while waiting for their ADS-B price to come down (currently about $8K), will not know how much they're missing.  I have also tested an ADS-B system from NavWorx with my Cheltons and it works great, so over the next year I will be integrating that as well.  This traffic stuff is VERY cool and adds a good measure of safety.  If we can just convince the Feds to keep Mode-S we'll all be better off until ADS-B fills in all over the country.  I suppose like all things, it'll have to be done in blood....enough traffic related deaths and they'll refocus on preventing them with technology.  Why does it always have to be the hard way.  So far by having traffic, it's actually had a few occasions where it could have saved my bacon had things continued in the same direction.  Configuration note:  The GTX330 feeds it's traffic data to the Chelton through an ARINC to serial converter.  You use ARINC #1 out from the GTX330, into the converter, and then hook the other side of the converter (serial in/out) to the Chelton's J1 connector.  (COM5 TCAD)  The trick to getting it working is that in the limits editor, you need to set COM23/24 to HIGH speed.   Man, once I got that information and the TIS displayed on my Cheltons, I can't imagine skipping traffic as an option.  It's one of the coolest things in the panel.  I don't think I'll ever want to be without traffic again.

Is the Gretz Pitot any good?
Sure seems to be.  I've now flowin in IFR conditions, right up to freezing temps, but it seems to work just fine.  My airspeed is now really close, within 2kts with the new Cleaveland static ports, so the pitot can't be that inaccurate.  It's nice having the thermostatic control to keep the power draw down.  Until someone has a negative report, don't expect much news, but it does seem to work as designed.

How's that PMA8000 audio panel?
Man, if there is something that's nice to have in the plane, this is it!  It feeds me audio warnings from all my equipment, I have the SPLIT-COM function where I can use one radio and the copilot uses the other.  The music input is phenomenal!  I have a front and rear input jack, and both are switched to allow the people in the front seat to choose either jack as their audio source, the rear seat passengers to choose either jack as their source.  That means I can listen to the video playing in the back seat, or my own music up front.  The Cellphone input is great too.  I got paged while on the runway and answered the call from the plane.  The voice quality is so nice that the called party doesn't even know you're in the plane.   I have the MUTE button the shuts off musing muting when you talk on the front intercom...nice for singing along to the songs.  I have the AUX button programmed to turn off muting in the rear so when we talk on the intercom the kids don't freak because they can't hear the movie.  This is one VERY functional piece of equipment for under $2k.

Sunlight Protection
The RV-10 Desperately needs sun visors.  They are offered by Alex at Aviation Tech Products.  He sells both the Rosen brand, and Blue Sky.  The Rosens cost more, are less easily maneuverable, and heavier, but built better.  The Blue-Sky's are very light, can be moved all over the place, and much cheaper.  They have a cheaper feel to them, too, but they look fine and work well, and I think are easier to mount, too.

What isn't as perfect as I should be?