Ästad Vingård, Sweden—November 2018… Ästad Vingård began as a traditional farm and has evolved into a renowned conference and activities venue. Here in the rolling farmland of the Halland countryside, on the fringes of the beech woods of Åkulla Bokskogar nature reserve, Ästad Vingård spreads across 50 hectares of arable land, including 15,000 vines, and an equal amount of meadow and grazing land. The newest addition to this rural paradise is the Ästad Vingård Hotel, which recently added 24 new guest rooms, each equipped with its own sauna, climate system, lighting system, audio system, and other amenities. Everything was custom designed together with the hotel, including the furniture.
Special-Elektronik in Karlstad provided the main technical design, assisted by AV, integrator firm JaDeVa AB, which also programmed the AV systems throughout the hotel. Swedish contractor Midroc installed the systems. The audio systems for the guest rooms include Attero Tech unA6IO-BT AES67-networked audio wall plates with Bluetooth input,” recounts JaDeVa AB partner, designed, and programmer Niklas Olsson. “Each room has two audio zones, one for the bedroom and one for the spa, which has a sauna, shower/bath, and toilet. Each audio zone can select what to listen to, so a guest in the bedroom can watch TV while another guest listens to Bluetooth music in the sauna.” Special-Elektronik specified Crestron Saros Express ICE6LPT two-way in-ceiling speakers for all guest rooms.
One Attero Tech unA6IO-BT wall panel delivers all the connectivity needed for each guest room, including stereo 3.5 mm and RCA inputs, as well as Bluetooth input and a 3.5 mm stereo output. All of the inputs can be used simultaneously as independent channels. “Not everyone is comfortable with using Bluetooth, and some people just think it is easier using the aux input,” Olsson points out. “We wanted to let the guests to decide. The unA6IO-BT panel in each room is mounted in hidden compartment in a wardrobe, so there is a custom 3.5 mm input at the desk in the room that is connected to the unA6IO-BT.”
The Ästad Vingård Hotel project was Olsson’s first Attero Tech install. “We originally planned to use another product but it did not allow us to control naming and clear Bluetooth pairing, and the the Attero Tech unA6IO-BT does,” he recalls. “It’s very important in a hotel to clear the pairing as soon as the customer checks out. When I realized the first product didn’t enable this, I searched online and found Attero Tech, which seemed like a very serious company with a bunch of great products. So I got in touch with them, and we ended up using the unA6IO-BT.”
As with any project, the hotel’s budget was taken into account. “The hotel wanted to have 3.5 mm aux inputs in all rooms,” Olsson recalls. “By using the unA6IO-BT, we were able to remove a lot of analog inputs from the design, so it became a lot less expensive to use the unA6IO-BT—and we got the 3.5 mm aux input as well. Also, we used a QSC Q-SYS Core 510i processor to manage the audio system throughout the hotel, and it natively supports AES67. That meant we could use it with the unA6IO-BT without requiring an additional card, as we would with Dante, and the number of products we needed would not be a problem on the network.”
One or two Crestron TSW-760-series seven-inch touch panels, mounted on either walls or table stands, provide guests with basic system control. JaDaVa developed a custom driver to enable the Crestron panel to directly control the unA6IO-BT panels via UDP, since at the time the Q-SYS software could not manage all 24 unA6IO-BTs. “Attero Tech’s technical support was amazing,” praises Olsson. “I had quite a lot of conversations with them and gave them a lot of suggestions, and they were super responsive and took all of my input into serious consideration. Much of it was implemented within a couple of days. So a massive ‘thank you’ to the guys at Attero Tech technical support!”
So far, the Ästad Vingård Hotel’s new AV system has operated as planned. “Since the hotel opened in June, we have had no reported issues with the AV system, including the Attero Tech unA6IO-BTs,” Olsson reports. “That’s good in my book. The Attero Tech products have a very professional feel and so far have worked very well.”