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Scenery Review : LPPR - Porto Airport Portugal by Area77 Simulations

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LPPR_Porto_Header.jpg

 

Scenery Review : LPPR - Porto Airport Portugal by Area77 Simulations

 

For some reason western Spain has not been on my route radar, eastern and even southern Spain yes, but not the Atlantic side unless I was flying over and out to South America or Miami, Florida, why that is I don't know but I rarely crossed Spain as a country. But I love exploring somewhere new.

 

Porto is known in English traditionally as Oporto, is the second-largest city in Portugal after Lisbon and one of Iberian Peninsula's major urban areas. The city is famous for Port wine and the football team FC Porto. It has a population of 287,591 and the metropolitan area of Porto, which extends beyond the administrative limits of the city and has a population of 2.3 million (2011) in an area of 2,395 km2 (925 sq mi), making it the second-largest urban area in Portugal. Its combined Celtic-Latin name, Portus Cale, has been referred to as the origin of the name Portugal and as a significant port you could say that the city is the heart of Portugal, and the UNENCO has recongnised Porto's historic centre as a World Heritage Site. So tourism is a big part of the city's economy.

 

Another new developer to X-Plane is Area77 Simulations, and they come with no FSX background, so this is their first scenery release with LPPR - Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport in Porto

 

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Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport

Aeroporto Sá Carneiro

 

IATA: OPO - ICAO: LPPR

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17/35 - 3,480m (11,417ft) Asphalt

Elevation AMSL 69 m / 226 ft

 

LPPR_Porto_General 1.jpgLPPR_Porto_General 2.jpg

 

Almost half the airport's area is taken up by just the finger single runway 17/35, so most of the airports terminals and facilities are positioned all on the southern end half. RWY 17 is also a turnaround area that requires a substantial taxi to the turnaround point and start runway hold point.

 

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The terminal design that was put into operation in 2006 is very good, as it is a very complex design, with external support structures and not internal support for maximum internal space, it is also a large terminal as well. However and this will be a theme throughout this review is that the modelling is very good, but the textures are a weak area and feel one dimensional.

So overall close up it all comes across a bit modally, the developer has also left a lot of the modeling blank (no textures) and it is noticeable, shame because the modeling is actually very good, but you are missing that earthy realism, the bland glass textures don't help either, they are reflective but not dynamic in the visual sense.

 

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All airbridges S10 to S12 and S30 to 35 are all non-active with no docking animations (SAM or Marginal), which really should now be a prerequisite to any payware scenery, but there is some nice branded OPO bus and tug animations around the terminal for some action a fire truck that does the airport rounds and clutter is not very high on the stands, but there is a fair amount overall. Out front terminal stands S36 to S54 are all walk-on

 

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These average textures are again highlighted by the container port next to the terminal, as the colours are more pastel than hard tired and worn shipping containers. Oddly up close the container detail looks good, but not at a distance and as the site is directly on the RWY 35 Approach it is highly and even distracting noticeable.

 

LPPR_Porto_Terminal 12.jpgLPPR_Porto_Terminal 13.jpg

 

Landside detail is very good with well laid out carparks and car rental enclosures, but in the slightly outer areas airport boundary areas are some empty flat photoreal textures, and that aspect totally spoils the effect around the airport's landside areas, obviously it is the autogen boundaries being set too far out, but it is highly noticeable.

 

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There is a fair amount of infrastructure detail landside like service stations and hotels, the hotel noted as the Oporto Hotel is actually wrong, it is the Park Hotel, the Oporto is actually positioned further back on the N107, but it is not represented like it is on the map.

 

LPPR_Porto_Terminal 14.jpgLPPR_Porto_Terminal 16.jpg

 

Control Tower is small considering the age of the field updates, you would think an extra bit of height when building a new one would not go amiss, official charts note a lot of tower blind areas on the aprons, the tower however is nicely done with logos and the tower view is very good and realistic, there are a few obstructions, but they don't interfere with the actual runway approach views.

 

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Cargo

LPPR is a very significant cargo hub for the Porto area, so there are two cargo areas, one the older one updated north of the terminal, and the other newer larger one is across the runways on the western side.

 

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Both are very good in detail with a lot of clutter and infrastructure, OPO airport management offices are part of the eastern cargo hub, and there is a large Everjets maintenance hangar and DHL facility on the western side with a large fuel depot. Stands S55 to S73 cover the east and used for LCC carrier parking as well as cargo, and stands T1 to T4 covers the west.

 

Opposite the terminal and east cargo there is significant remote stand parking in three zones that covers S20 to 25, S40 to S43 and S60 to S66 parking

 

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Small details are set out around the airfield. There are two fire station areas with a small one just off Taxiway A1 and the main larger station to the east nearer the threshold of RWY 17.

 

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Right of threshold of RWY 17 there is a radar installation with a rotating animated radar tower, and the installation details are very good.

 

Surprisingly runway, taxiway, concrete and apron textures are very good, nice depth, texture and detail.

 

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Particularly well done are the rubber tyre marks on the runways, taxiways and around the aircraft on the aprons... 3d grass is also well done and abundant right across most of the field, and field linage and signage are all excellent.

 

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Lighting

LPPR's lighting was also another surprise as it is very good to excellent...

 

LPPR_Porto_Lighting 1.jpg

 

....  approach to both runways is excellent with full taxiway lineage lighting.

 

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Terminal area is outstanding with a lot of standing lighting with the correct tones and overall feel.

 

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Carpark lighting is about perfect, and the full landside all feels very realistic and visually it is all very nice to look at...

 

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The night texture glass is not bad either in contrast to the day feel, but it still looks very early FSX. I really like the copper tones of the remote stands. it looks great visually, but the tower lighting lights only both sides of the aircraft but leaves the fuselage in the dark? so working out here on the remote ramps in the dark is not actually preferable. 

 

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The western cargo area looks great and feels about right both air and land sides, but to note the larger of the two fire stations on the finals on the approach to RWY 17 feels very bright and even distracting for what is only really an operations area. Overall though the lighting effects are very good.

 

Porto

The visualization of Porto and the surrounding environs is excellent. Here the X-Plane autogen does an excellent job in recreating a visual spread of the city. Inserted VFR reference points help in creating the right aspect...

 

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... all the Arrábida, Luiz I, Infante, D.ª Maria, S.João-e-Freixo bridges are all represented and look outstanding, however the autogen traffic ending intrudes badly on the Ponte da Arrábida and in many areas the autogen is cut short and exposing the photo textures.

 

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Leixões, Afurada-e-Freixo marinas are also represented, as is the bizarre shaped Casa da Música. The Port of Leixões is well represented with the port and docks all modelled, but the significant and iconic cruise terminal on the barrier sea wall is oddly missing? and some shipping would have been nice.

 

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All the coastline looks great and is blended in well at the end of the photo-textures, however the line of the end of the underlays does show as a darker to lighter scenery area and it is not blended in and noticeable on the RWY 17 approach. LPDA - Massarelos Heliport (LPDA) and Pedro Hispano Hospital (LPPH) have both been created and the heliport looks great positioned just past the Arrábida Bridge, another skyline note is the Town hall of Maia and the building is highly visible from the airport.

 

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The Lighthouse Leça da Palmeira is also represented and the revolving light works in blinding at night the neighbour hood and is very visible on the RWY 35 approach.

 

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WT3 : WorldTraffic ground route, Parking Defs and operations files are provided with the scenery. But the developers skills may have created the ATC routes, but is lacking in other areas, and especially in the airport flow network. Both the provided and a generated set of ground routes are a mess.

To be fair LPPR's runway and taxiway layouts are complex, as you have a finger turnaround threshold and a noted incursion spot and a cross at the start of RWY 35. But with a correct flow traffic setup most if not all of the limitations could have been easily eliminated.

 

The provided routes are actually the worst. They do taxi up the finger, but turn early, but then the aircraft takes off on the runways verge?

 

LPPR_Porto_WT3 1.jpgLPPR_Porto_WT3 2.jpg

 

Both have wrong flow directions in that the landing aircraft departs at taxiway H (RWY 17) directly into the departure path, a continued taxi to taxiway D or C would avoid this confrontation. The threshold to RWY 35 departures are another mess in that if any arrival aircraft is using the taxiway A (1,2 &3) it hits the departing aircraft on taxiway B, again a cross runway at taxiway H route would miss the pile up. The generation route aircraft take-off at the incursion spot, and does a short takeoff roll, but at least it looks more realistic, so both fail, but the GEN route is the best of the worst.

 

Services

All major European airlines fly to OPO, but the two LLC's EasyJet and RyanAir dominate, and TAP Portugal is based here. International is a lot of routes and services is seasonal including Canada, but Emirates (Dubai), Azul Brazil, TAAG Angola Airlines, Turkish Airlines and United Airlines all fly here. Azore and North African routes are also highly represented. DHL Aviation, Turkish Airlines Cargo and UPS Airlines cover cargo operations

 

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Summary

These newly developed sceneries contemplate consideration because they are just that in a new fresh developer creating a new scenery, that means hours of work and resources. In that context the LPPR - Porto Airport is very good and there is a lot of considerable detail and work in this scenery, so the basics are very good, like with most it is only in the finer areas that needs reflection and more skills.

 

So from a reviewers point of view you can criticise but to the changes and not towards the hostile, it is a learning curve after all. But this is payware, you are paying money for the scenery, so you want a decent return on your investment.

 

The modelling work in the scenery which is quite complex in areas like the large terminal is actually very good, and only let down by the average bland textures and the visually noticeable bland port containers, a lot of exposed 3d work sometimes works in the buildings features but overdone in many areas like all the apron/carpark lighting towers that require custom textures. Glass is PBR but still being quite bland looking does not help either, and as a noted UHD scenery it isn't, yes the phototextures are very good, but the other textures are not. Missing active airbridges are also a big factor on a scenery of this calibre, static jetways just don't cut it anymore with great and free animated options.

 

Poor autogen boundaries also leaves blank areas that are visibly very noticeable, both at the airport and in Porto city itself, if it won't autofill then you have to fill it in yourself, unless it doesn't work.

 

Provided WorldTraffic3 ground routes are awful, the home generated version is just as bad with either sets not having any decent traffic flows, yes it is a complicated layout, but still not that hard to set the right arrival and departure aircraft flows on the ATC routes.

 

But there is a lot to like here, ground textures (surprisingly) are really good, as is the excellent night lighting, 3d grass and detail is very good with branded clutter. Excellent Porto autogen is supported well with great VFR visual items and the spread overall is very good except you can see the phototexture boundaries.

 

So to the question and to invest in LPPR - Porto, overall yes, because the good is very good and yes I have seen far much worse on a debut scenery, secondly is that most of the areas that are average to the rest of the scenery can easily be updated without major changes to the overall scenery.

So overall I really like the airport and it's surrounds and as an debut scenery it is an excellent effort, it just needs some adjustments around the edges to make it a perfect Portuguese destination.

 

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Yes! LPPR - Porto Airport Portugal by Area77 Simulationsis Available from the X-Plane.Org Store here :


LPPR - Porto Airport Portugal, Portugal

 

Price is US$23.50

 
Features:

 

  • Buildings around the airport such as warehouses, container park and car parks;
  • Animated radar;
  • Navigation station: Glideslope, ILS e DVOR/DME
  • Oporto hotel
  • Metro stations
  • Airport freeway bridges and access
  • Lighthouse in Leça da Palmeira, Matosinhos
  • Pedro Hispano Hospital, Matosinhos
  • Pedro Hispano Hospital Heliport
  • Massarelos Heliport
  • STCP Museum, Porto
  • Vincci Hotel, Porto
  • City bridges: Arrábida, Luiz I, Infante, D.ª Maria, S.João e Freixo
  • Leixões seaport
  • Leixões, Afurada e Freixo marinas
  • Custom lighting
  • Road traffic
  • World Traffic Routes
  • Custom mesh

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Installation

The download package is 879.40mb and there are five folders with one mesh and one roads to be inserted in your "Custom Scenery" Folder.

 

  • LPPR - Francisco Sa Carneiro Airport - Porto - PORTUGAL
  • LPPR - Mesh
  • LPDA - Massarelos - Porto - PORTUGAL
  • LPPH - Pedro Hispano - Porto - PORTUGAL
  • LPPR - Roads

 

Total scenery installation is a huge 1.92gb

 

Documents: 

Manuals in English and Portuguese

  • MANUAL_EN.pdf
  • MANUAL_PT.pdf

 

Requirements :

X-Plane 11

Windows, Mac or Linux
4GB VRAM Minimum - 8GB+ VRAM Recommended
Download Size: 880MB
Current and Review version: 1.0 (Aug 3rd 2019)

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Scenery Review by Stephen Dutton

13th August 2019

Copyright©2019: X-Plane Reviews

 

Review System Specifications:

Computer System: Windows  - Intel Core i7 6700K CPU 4.00GHz / 64bit - 16 Gb single 1067 Mhz DDR4 2133 - GeForce GTX 980/SSE2 - Samsung Evo 1Tb SSD 

Software:   - Windows 10 - X-Plane 10 Global ver 10.45 / Checked install in X-Plane11b6

Addons: Saitek x52 Pro system Joystick and Throttle : Sound - Bose  Soundlink Mini : Headshake by SimCoders

Plugins:  WorldTraffic3 US$29.95 : Environment Engine v1.07 by xEnviro US$69.90 :

Scenery or Aircraft

- Boeing 738 by Laminar Research - Default with X-Plane11

 

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