MCDU Comparison

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747-400 MCDU

The original Boeing/Honeywell MCDU display.

My MCDU, in display-only mode for dedicated hardware (uses normal Windows display and the Windows keyboard or equivalent, so you need to construct or purchase some computer-looking-like-a-MCDU hardware, like PFC's).

A photo-realistic MCDU, fully mousable and suitable for touch screens. This is a real photo of a real 747-400 MCDU, thanks to Jörg Löhnig. My MCDU redraws the display with special fonts, so you get the authentic look of the vector drawing display unit. The annunciators are painted with overlay bitmaps taken from the real unit in BULB TEST mode. This is truly as realistic as you can get it.

Sort of competing software from Project Magenta. Although they, like most MCDU software, use good graphics for the keyboard part, they do not use proper display fonts. It really does not look like the real thing at all.

A mode for 600x800 (portrait) touch screen displays where no photo backdrop is wanted to gain space. You see three special things here: 1. 22 lines instead of 14, 2. a 'meta block' at the bottom which stays visible at all times and contains important meta keys and annunciators, and 3. a virtual popup keyboard for occasional alphanumerical entries. This keyboard pops into view (and out of view) via the KEYBRD meta key. What is not visible is that the display itself has hot touch spots for the line select keys overhead the carets; this leads to a remarkably intuitive interface.

Lastly, the same 600x800 touch screen mode, but now showing off the colour support. Obviously these colours are not only available in touch screen mode; they fully depend on the controlling application. The MCDU is and will remain a dumb terminal only.

© 2021 Jeroen Hoppenbrouwers For more information, mail to