EECH is worth checking out, but it's a different beast. Don't expect a study sim. It's closer to Lock On than Blackshark. If you ever played Gunship 2000 a long time ago, EECH is reminiscent of the potential you felt was possible in helos sims down the road. No rescue missions, but most of the other stuff is present.
First off, DCS has better sound. You can even hear bullets pinging off your aircraft. EECH has some changes to improve what was already implemented, but still falls short.
DCS has datalinking and a comprehensive autopilot. Switchology galore.
Don't expect detailed damage modeling and apparent physical damage in EECH. Unless you're smoking or your rotor is gone, you won't see signs of damage outside of the systems page and what you can/can't still do with the aircraft.
DCS has more accurate weapons modeling of what's included. ED doesn't seem to include stuff unless they can be fastidious and realistic by their defined threshold... side-stepping for a moment that there is no such thing as a perfectly realistic simulation. Dissent is, let's just say, not really tolerated by them. The idea of the previously-work-in-progress and information-restricted Comanche being in a sim is anathema to ED, let alone now that it's been canceled.http://forums.eagle.ru/showthread.php?t=65402&page=2
I find they do not take shortcuts, which also has its bad adverse effects, too. You don't always need to put every detail in to include something and sometimes can make estimated, appropriate guesses to fill in the gaps or lower computational requirements. But it's a philosophy on their part and EECH just takes a different approach in that respect. The modifications in EECH do make a difference.
DCS has more nuanced and accurate flight models. On the bright side, EECH doesn't require the nose down so much anymore just to maintain 100kts. EECH does allow optional crosscoupling/tail-mixing, which is convenient for all tail rotor helos and appropriate for the Zulu/Viper and Comanche, but it has no tail drive power limit effects when this is active. GlovePIE and PPJoy can also improve EECH (as well as DCS), but I'm apparently alone in my use of them for helo sims for auto trimming and various other nifty things. Trust me, it makes a big difference. GlovePIE and PPJoy even improve EECH's rolling and looping in aerial combat, not to mention the more modern SAS/FBW attitude hold aspects when using a joystick or pressure stick versus a forcefeedback stick like the G940 or an expensive custom pole cyclic. I don't know anyone personally who owns the latter.
EECH has some issues with yaw modeling and finding a fine balance in its more simplified model between aerodynamic streamlining & weatherveining effect and the power of something like the Kamovs' or Comanche's ability to do a hard yaw against the flow. So right now the "pseudo-real" flight model config setting errors in favor of insufficient air effect in the yaw in flight so that a Ka-52 or Rah-66 can flat turn at moderate speeds or fly sideways at low speeds. If you lose a tail rotor, you will begin to spin sooner than accurate, but since that will eventually happen anyway in real life (remember Blackhawk Down), it's the lesser evil.
Weird, counterintuitive yaw effects are still slightly present at low speeds in EECH, but this has been improved. There is another necessary compromise between the nose pointing completely the wrong way initially when banking, having no coordinated turning at all, and having too much coordinated turning effects. The current iteration in EECH is not a bad compromise again with a simplified flight modeling code. You get just a slight amount of coordination when banking in forward flight. To be fair, DCS yaw SAS authority and stability has never been completely to my pleasing, either.
DCS has no low-observable modeling, no air to air weapons on helos, no FLIR on helos (no radar doesn't bother me), and no real dynamic campaign. So DCS missions are repetitive and stale now.
Both seem to often have FOBs and FARPs with no one around at all, but at least EECH sometimes re-equips airfields in a hurry with more SAMs and attack helos... a nice side-effect of the dynamic campaign resupply.
DCS seems to have more infantry with small arms and MANPADs deployed... and it has RPGs. There are missions with a definite human presence. They both still need more infantry, in my opinion, but most of the time EECH campaigns seem to either have none or groups them all together, and those groups don't often defend themselves. I don't know if EECH models visual or auditory detection of aircraft by infantry such that Comanche and even Viper would not be noticed by "soft targets" until closer at night than the other helos in the sim. Would be cool, though.
In EECH, wingmen often want to go off and fight even when you tell them not to, repeatedly asking for assistance. So you need to keep telling them to rejoin or return to base to get away from the enemy. The AI in general is possibly dumber in EECH, but neither sim's wingmen are particularly competent. EECH does not have "cover me" as a wingman command. Giving them a "weapons free" order seems to sort of work for that purpose, assuming they haven't run off to get some threat that briefly painted them in the distance. You have to make use of hold position quite a lot.
Back to the FMs, EECH's lift has been modified recently, so it's harder to maintain altitude than even the last version was, especially without translational lift and out of ground effect (i.e. when hovering). This is even more so when carrying a lot of fuel and ordinance in something like the Hind or when going over tall hills, which is apparently more accurate and keeps you on your toes. A fully loaded Hind apparently can't actually hover in real life, and EECH now represents that. If you don't need the fuel and ordinance, it helps to strip down prior to takeoff or get a rolling start. Some of the helos can still carry more fuel than is realistic, anyway. Finally we have a reason to use the runway! If you haven't noticed yet, I really like the EECH FM balance right now within this limited code.
Right now, Kiowa's torque reading is inaccurate, probably because it has only one engine. Just ignore that. You can get in an Osprey, but it's just the Apache from within with the same FM. Zulu/Viper also has overly-low top speed. You'll recognize approaching Vne or Vno by the vibration and rocking around. I'm not sure if the retreating blade stall and reduced authority is still modeled, but you certainly do vibrate visibly until the rotors rip apart. Watch your IAS when in a dive.
To put things in perspective, I personally would be content with the variety of EECH, the simplified attitude hold flight model of Longbow Anthology (maybe add VRS and over speed to it, and of course LB1/2 can only recognize one controller and CTDs a lot), and the weapons modeling of DCS. The switchology I can take or leave. As for graphics, obviously you've noticed DCS is where it's at if you have the hardware.
Lately I've found EECH more engaging than DCS when using PPJoy & GlovePIE to do the similar attitude command & attitude hold thing I usually do with Blackshark 2 and Comanche Gold. With the dynamic campaign, amazing ongoing mods, some tweaks to my GlovePIE scripts to make collective response more realistic and dissuade/punish ham-handednenss on the X65 sidestick (engines begin powering down otherwise! Hit those < >'s), and a few GWUT tweaks, EECH is very enjoyable in spite of the occasional CTD. There are times when it all synergizes in a way that just might be the best helo combat home experience yet.
And I'm thrilled to see an option to turn cheats and time acceleration off now in the config. This increases immersion for me and removes the temptation to game the sim, which inevitably leads to boredom. I'm tempted to also ask for some config mode to require you to be at a FARP or airfield to enter or exit a helo, but I'll stop on that front while I'm ahead ;-)
O.k., I do wish I could have stereoscopic Vision 3D in EECH the way I can with DCS, but I deal with it. Once you get used to that faux depth, it's a little tough to go back.
I have a nitpick with the seeming disappearance of the sans-radar scout Comanche from EECH for some reason and the totally wrong flight test cap in place of the radar "lamp shade" on the rotor mast of the attack version.
You have to be careful if you jump into a flying chopper in EECH, as sometimes the rotor turns off. Very bad over water, but if you have 10 seconds or more of invulnerability in the config file set, it's usually o.k. Occasionally, jumping-in and/or engaging/disengaging autopilot causes hidden pre-existing damage to suddenly present itself. I like to imagine that as random failures and wouldn't entirely call that an unwanted bug, though I don't think it's intentional.
The config file could benefit from a universal damage potential ratio, with 1.0 being the current soft and armor damage everything can absorb. Sometimes objects seem to take far too much punishment before destruction. Cutting everything down by 50% or whatever catches your fancy might be interesting without having to mess with the GWUT considering the delicate balance of comparative advantage various weapons already have.
But again, nitpicks.
EECH is definitely worth trying in spite of its quirks. Don't miss out!