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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on 4 April 2001
All the pictures are small and B/W, quite a few don't help recognition very much. The silhouettes are tiny, almost completely black, in some cases unclear. Few technical data, nothing about engines, power, performances.
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43 of 44 people found the following review helpful
on 27 June 2008
Yes, it has colour pictures but.....

Sadly the original layout of separating into type (e.g. Jet, Swept Wings, rear Engines) has been abandoned in favour of alphabetical listings.

This is supposed to be a recognition guide but, unfortunately, planes don't fly over in alphabetical order - in order to identify an aircraft you now have to plough through the whole of the book on the offchance you will come across the right one.

It is no longer a recognition guide - simply a book of planes.

In a word, Pants.

EDIT - I notice that a lot of the earlier reveiws (the glowing ones - some more than 9 years ago) seem to refer to previous editions of this book - i.e. when it was still a useful guide. This seems a less than helpful to those buying the new edition!
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31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
I had looked forward to this for a long time, it was on back order and the release date kept slipping.... I had hoped for great things, at the very least a significant improvement on the first edition that has been well thumbed. Yes, it is now full of colour photos. But that is where the improvement stops in my opinion. Detail specs are now missing - no engine info and limited other details. The index is poor. Will I order the next edition before publication? - No.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 20 August 2009
Sorry to say that I don't recognise this as a recognition book. Derek Wood knew his business after years in the Royal Observer Corps. Wood's original recognition handbooks were pretty much perfect with similar types grouped together, confusion types listed and a photo that showed the aircraft's main recognition features.

This post-Wood series fails to do this, being an encyclopaedia more akin to the Observers books than Wood's guide. I only hope that the authors were forced into this format by a publisher who didn't know any better. As an aircraft reference it works if you know the name, but if you don't know, you'll be doing a awful lot of page turning.

On a positive note, if it is intended as a reference to replace the Observers book of Aircraft I welcome it, but as a recognition guide it could be much better.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on 19 January 2005
This is first ever Jane's recognition book I own myself. I have been keen on aviation since I was a kid, and read my aircraft recognition knowledge from many different books and other sources. Now, I have found that new version of Jane's recognition book has been very handy. I can take it with me where ever I go and when I am hesitating on plane types, I just see this book. It does not give absolute knowledge of all details between all variants and models, but covers well enough all necessary flying vehicles. Now I work for KFOR and there has been even more use for the book, it covers military aircraft very well and so far I haven't found a single aircraft that has not been in the book. In most cases, it even has enough details to recognise small details between, for example, military helicopters, which are here very common, and differences between civil and military versions.
Only thing I miss, is to have a better glossary and possibility to find aircraft types quickly by sorting them by amount of engines, props etc.
This book is excellent for basics, but if you wish to be able to recognise all variants of some model, then I recommend something else. I doubt if there is any book that would give perfect data for spotting every variant of every model, that book would just be too heavy to take anywhere!
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on 8 October 2003
I am a keen aircraft spotter, but recent editions of this Guide are virtually useless for identification. Aircraft need to be grouped by shape - twin-boom/delta/single-engine/high-wing etc. -and the introduction of colour into the 2002 edition is a distraction. Come on, Jane's, back to basics or rename the book!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 24 November 2010
This well formated book is a sad and sorry failure. The size, the layout and color pictures are all wonderful and the book could have easily become a standard reference book for the interested reader. However, the authors have made several mistakes that make the book largely useless.

First they have adopted an entirely illogical classification system - in which 2 models of the same plane are likely to be listed under different categories and comparisons between similar models are largely obscured.

In addition, the written information is sketchy and illogical. Basic information like weights, horsepower etc. are not supplied and supplemented by several meaningless statistics.

In addition the book is full of mistakes and inconsistencies, some are factual, some are editing errors and some are errors of omission.

To cap it all the book has several entery inconsistencies. Some plane models are presented several times in different guise while some major models are simply omitted.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
on 22 February 2003
Fortunatly I was lucky enough to win a competition to get one of these books and I first saw the book at the farnborough airshow and I was seriously thinking about buying it. So when I won the competition I was glad I didnt. I was pretty pleased at first with the colour photos ,the silouhettes and a little look into the background of the aircraft. I do Aircraft recognition in the Air Training Corps(and been pretty successful)and I have an older edition of the recognition handbook(where the aircraft are divided by shape)which is good but lacks the newer aircraft but when it comes to using the new book its quite difficult to compare two similar looking aircraft because they are split by they're role and not the shape of the aircraft. So its made difficult to compare a 707 and E6B(but we use slides for added help). I think that if Janes returned to the old set up of defining aircraft by shape and not role ,it would be easier to learn from. So overall I probably would have bought it but lets hope Janes revert back to shape and not role in the next edition
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 9 November 2011
This book suffers from poor taxonomy (clasification), really poor fact checking (KPH figures that don't match the Mach%) and - worst of all - doesn't even have a proper index!

A poor product. Disapointment.

The REAL Jane's aircraft book (all the world's aircraft of course) remains definative. I just can't understand how this - albeit the layman's handbook version - didn't use the same base info.

Real miss for Jane's.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 9 November 2010
As already mentioned in other reviews - the best and fastest recognition would be according to typical characteristics of an aircraft, not according to producers or basic groups such as airliners, etc. However, it is still a very nice book with a lot of interesting information and my recommendation is still to buy.
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