d&b NoizCalc provides sensitive apres-ski for L’Abarset

One of Europe’s most desirable aprés-ski venues, L’Abarset, recently completed the installation of a carefully considered sound system from audio solutions company d&b audiotechnik. In this spectacular mountainside location, with its strict residential noise regulations, the off-site sound levels had to be taken very seriously.

Sitting in the mountain-ringed principality of Andorra, serving clientele of the Pyrenees’ largest ski resort, Grandvalira, L’Abarset is known for fine-dining and great parties. With a busy program of late-night DJs and live music throughout the ski season, it needs – perhaps more than most venues – to balance its entertainment reputation with environmental responsibility. 

Of course, the management wanted a system that could sustain the venue’s standing. “From project conceptualisation, we knew that sound quality was the main focus, and everything would hinge upon that,” says Àlex Orúe, Hospitality & Corporate Business Director at operator, Grandvalira-Ensisa.

The challenge fell to Ibiza-based technical production company, Onlivelighting, led by Toni Prats and Toni Torres. “We chose d&b because it’s rider friendly and meets the DJ’s demands,” says Prats. “We wanted to seamlessly integrate the loudspeakers into the unique architecture and to do so we used a distributed sound system for even sound coverage, where they will have less visual impact.”

At the same time, they had to be aware of how the sound would spread off-site, away from the partying punters. “We had to pay special attention to any potential effect on the natural environment,” says Prats. The answer was d&b’s unique NoizCalc package. “With the d&b NoizCalc software, we could ensure that the environmental noise pollution would be minimal,” he says.

Toni Torres adds, “The NoizCalc analysis included all the areas adjacent to the space, including hotels and nearby residential areas. It showed us that we had the biggest problem in the area farthest away on the other side of the valley.”

The insights derived from NoizCalc allowed the Onlivelighting team to optimise the system accordingly. “It led to us adding point sources in order to reduce the pressure of the main system while achieving the same pressure in the listening area,” says Torres.

Sound reinforcement was needed both inside the venue, in the restaurant area, and out on the terrace where revellers gather to enjoy the performances. Inside, d&b 8S point source and 18S compact subwoofers are installed. Outside, point sources again prove valuable with V Series and Y Series in combination, with B6 Subs hidden within space’s architecture. All are powered by 40D amplifiers and system control is via R1 remote control software and an R90 touchscreen.

“Thanks to the great dispersion control of both the V and Y point source cabinets, we can optimize very effectively where we want to avoid noise,” says Torres. “We also work actively with the R1 to correct the system according to the rather extreme weather conditions in L’Abarset.”

“Thanks to the efforts of all the crews involved, we have achieved a value proposition that is solid, qualitative and sustainable,” says Orúe. “We can become the aprés-ski of reference at European level, and this was one of the ambitions we all had.”

Torres concludes, “The d&b team has always been the brand’s greatest asset. From Christian Orcin supporting our projects, Alfonso Luria in the commercial field and above all, Juanma De Casas for the design and configuration of the system, that have all been great. Thanks to Àlex Orúe for his trust, and all the Onlivelighting and d&b audiotechnik team for making it possible.”

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