Airport Ibiza XP
Part 1 - Introduction
"It's like waking up on a beach after a scary night in Ibiza" No,not my real life experience, but someone describing a nice piece ofchill-out music. But, Ibiza really does deserve its reputation as theparty capital of Europe, and how many folks have arrived at LEIB withhigh hopes of the holiday of a lifetime? Think Spring Break inFlorida, but for 6 months of the year! Unfortunately, the author ofthis piece is well past that stage, a nice motorhome tour of Devon ismy plan for when the lockdown ends!
Ibiza Airport (IATA IBZ, ICAO, LEIB), and in Catalan Aeroportd'Evissa. The airport is the international airport serving theBalearic Islands of Ibiza and Formantera. It is located 7 km (4.3miles) southwest of Ibiza Town. As the island is a major Europeanholiday destination, it has several dozen seasonal routes to citiesacross Europe as well as some year round domestic routes.
In 2019, it handled no less that 8 million passengers. Of course,that is all irrelevant in these uncertain times, but we as flight simenthusiasts, can recreate these heady days especially with the likesof World Traffic and Traffic Global, and witness an airport full ofaircraft from Spain and Europe.
The software being reviewed is "Aerosoft - Airport Ibiza XP forX-Plane 11".
My copy was obtained from the store.flightsim.com, and is a largescenery pack. Zipped it is 4.1 GB, and unzipped, 10.7 GB. At the time ofwriting, the cost in the store was $24.99.
Part II - The Scenery
One thing to note is that, with this scenery, you are not justgetting an airport, you are getting a couple of islands as well! Bestlet Aerosoft set the scene:
Bring home some holiday feeling and enjoy the detailed airport aswell as the fantastic scenery of the two islands Ibiza andFormentera.
Both islands include accurate coastlines, the newly designedairport in Ibiza, and aerial photography textures with a spectacularresolution of 0.5 m/pixel for the islands and 0.25 m/pixel for theairport.
The international airport of Ibiza (LEIB) features numerous detailsand surrounding buildings. Moreover, fully custom SAM jetways as wellas PBR ground textures ensure a realistic flight experience.
- High resolution satellite images (about 0.5 m/px) on the whole island
- Highly detailed airport with a resolution of 0.25 m/px
- Numerous static vehicles like buses, baggage carts, etc.
- Custom landmark objects
- Fully customized SAM jetways
- Highly detailed aerial photograph night textures
- Compatible with World Traffic
- PBR ground textures
- X-Plane 11
- Operating system: Microsoft Windows 8 / 10 (64 bit), Linux or macOS 10.10+
- Processor: Dual Core CPU with 3.0 GHz
- Memory: 8 GB RAM
- Graphics card: 1 GB, DirectX 11
- Installation size: 10 GB
Theentry in the Storehas some nice screen shots to give you a flavor of the scenery.
Let's see the difference between the default scenery and then withthe Aerosoft package installed.
As you can see...much more detail!
What about the effect on frame rates? Well, Aerosoft recommendwinding your graphics settings up as much as possible, which for me,with a middle of the road PC and XP 11.4.1 would be a real problem,especially with some Orbx scenery. For example, at Edinburgh, with theUK Orbx scenery installed, and using the latestZibo Mod 738,I would be struggling at around 20 FPS with this setup.
However, I am happy to say at LEIB with the above settings, the FPSwere around 30 FPS. This was with the latest Zibo mod, and even betterwith Rotate's "Mad Dog" MD80(Traffic Global present):
This is important for those pilots like myself, who fly onVATSIM. Their latest pilot clients have an "automatic disconnect" ifthe frame-rate drops below 20 FPS for even a short period of time.
All of us who have flown to the Med for our summer holidays willremember the blast of heat as you get to the aircraft door fordisembarkation. Well, this Aerosoft Ibiza conveys that impression of ahot sunny destination. The airport itself is faithfully represented,with accurate buildings and surrounds, as you can see from the screenshots vs real life.
I like the colorful panels on the airport "streetside" facade andthe aircon units on the terminal roof, All these details add to therealism of the experience. The apron markings are clear and there isan ATC taxi network with named routes and gates (important for onlineflying).
There are some good local touches as well. A nice touch are theshaded parking spots at the car hire office. It's these kind ofdetails that can make you feel "you are there". The stamp collectorsamong us will be familiar with the following:
Now for the SAM airbridges. Point of interest; the manual for theairport says Malaga has airbridges, however, they mean Ibiza. In myown opinion, I find SAM a bit overcomplicated compared to the oldAutogate plugin, but I have to admit that when I can get it to work,SAM is impressive, I just find it a bit inconsistent. At LEIB, Ibelieve all the parking slots with airbridges are SAM capable and thescreen shot below shows me hooked up to one. But try as I might, Icould not get any of the gate guidance boards to show any information,but that might just be my setup. There is is plenty of ground trafficthough, mostly airport buses and vans. These worked well, but I didspot a bus that was travelling half underground, but that was anexception. It would however have been nice to see some traffic outsidethe airport as well.
At night, the apron is nicely lit.
Taxiing around, it would appear, to me at least, that the apronedge and centerline lights are Laminar default. Personally, I findthese a bit dim and I tend to "lose" the centerline lights on sharpturns.
But...where are the people?! There wasn't a soul in sight. Thereare loads of excellent 3d people models and I'm sure Aerosoft couldmake some of their own, but without them, the airport feels "sterile"with no airside personnel.
I took a GA flight around the islands just to get an impression ofthe ortho scenery and was well satisfied with the result. It reallyconveys the dry arid islands of the Med in summer, and of course, thebeaches!
In summary, I haven't flown into LEIB, or visited Ibiza, but Ireally liked this scenery, and consider it good value for money. Asmentioned in the review, you can "feel the heat" and it makes youbelieve that this is a proper holiday destination airport.
Things I would like to see in any future update would be:
- 3D people
- Traffic "streetside"
- Some dried 3D grass beside the taxiways (the orthos are too "flat")
Overall though, this is a nice scenery pack and in my honestopinion, a good purchase for those who like flying these Mediterraneanflights.>
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