F-4C flight performance is identical to 1.95. Caps out at 1360kph.
F-4E has the flight characteristics of a late E with wing slats (despite the model being that of an early E). It has slightly more overall thrust than the F-4C, but caps out at ~1305kph. Turns better than any other Phantom, but bleeds speed like a MiG-21MF.
F-4EJ performs like an early E (i.e. no slats. It has the same thrust as the F-4E, but has a slightly lower empty weight (by 240kg). The EJ turns only sightly better than the F-4C and caps out at 1420kph (although the practical limit is about the same as the F-4C).
All of the FMs seem to be performing as they should. I admit I haven't seen the performance data of a late F-4E with slats, but the in-game F-4E performs very similarly to the F-4S, a modernised F-4B that also had wing slats and engines with near-identical thrust.
The F-4C's gunpods are now angled at 0 degrees (yay), but the extra 2 gunpods now properly affect its performance. It caps out at 1220kph / M1.0 at SL if you take them, on top of hampering climb and turn. Recoil with 3 pods still bucks like a bull on steroids.
F-4E and EJ nose gun is technically angled at 0 degrees, but for some reason the aiming reticle is at about -0.5 degrees. The pods on both the E and EJ are angled -1 degree. Depending on whether you acknowledge the flight manuals or general arrangement diagram, the nose gun should be angled either -2 degrees or
-2.75 degrees. In any case, the gun only has 640 rounds and there's no lead indicator, which means its offensive capabilities are going to be very limited until you reach AIM-9Js.
Speaking of missiles, the AIM-9J has so far been… OK, I guess. It pulls like a 20G missile should, and can definitely be considered an upgrade to the AIM-9E, but it has numerous weaknesses:
- First, it has a maximum launch load of 4G, compared to the R-60's 7G. This means the AIM-9J has trouble being used in close range (< 1.5km) maneuvering fights. The ability to uncage the seeker pre-launch (exactly like the 9E) somewhat helps with this.
- Second, the J has the same rocket motor as the AIM-9E, meaning it has the same mediocre speed and range. Shots from beyond about 2km often don't land if the target just flat turns. Admittedly, the R-60 has similar constraints, but it falls far short of the longer range AIM-9D.
- Third, the AIM-9J has a fairly mediocre track rate of 16.5 deg/s for its seeker, compared to the R-60s 30 deg/s. Essentially, this makes it difficult for the J to track through hard jinking during the last second or so before impact.
Both E and EJ are the first aircraft to have access to flares (Tier 1 upgrade). They deploy in a similar pattern to the AH-1Z (weird progressive spiral thing). Be aware that these are not a silver bullet for countering IR missiles. If you're in afterburner, an incoming missile is unlikely to go for the flares. Missiles approaching from the sides are also less likely to be affected by flares. The best method is to put the missile directly between your aircraft and the flares (i.e. directly behind you). Even better is the pre-fire flares when someone is trying to get a lock on you. This is especially true for modern helicopters, which apparently can't even lock you if you attack head-on and continuously pre-fire flares.
F-4E also has a arcade-style bombing reticle apparently. Not sure about the EJ or C though.
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