Yann, owner of the Garcia Exploration 45 “Corto” launched at the beginning of October 2020, is a professional skipper. He carries out this activity in Greece, in the Cyclades, and was getting ready to set sail the night after the encounter that gave rise to this article, in order to avoid the strongest of a winter depression.

Although his new boat is primarily intended for personal use, Yann doesn’t rule out assigning it to certain professional navigations: “I will sometimes sail aboard my Garcia for work, but only with friendly clients,” he explains.

He considers his sailboat as an ideal living environment to move between his personal life – in which his wife and young son Hector play a central role – and his professional life. And what could be better, he says, “to relax after intense sailing, than to listen to good music in good conditions“?

Billie Holliday, James Brown, Eric Satie… Yann’s musical tastes are part of a very wide repertoire, from which no genre is a priori excluded: “I have very eclectic tastes, and really listen to very different things; but I am always attentive to the interpretation, the versions and of course to a certain quality of listening. And in this domain, I have found someone to talk to at the Garcia yard, in the person of Yvan“.

Yvan Poirier is indeed a recognised sound specialist, with a fine ear and a particularly rich background in this field which requires very advanced skills. His arrival at the shipyard has made him the natural technical referent for all audiophile installation projects on board the boats produced by Garcia Yachts, as well as by Allures Yachting.

Yvan continues in these terms: “On board Yann’s boat, I recommended the installation of a Focal listening system based on the Dôme proximity speakers, which combine large dynamic range and precision of the sound picture, and are therefore perfect for restoring a detailed and faithful sound to the original, in a volume such as that of the saloon. I also recommended the addition of a subwoofer from the Focal Flax Evo range, installed as close to the floor as possible, next to the saloon table: it allows for the correct reproduction of low frequencies, so easily absorbed by trim elements such as cushions or linings“.

Obviously, this “custom” installation was not easy to set up for Yvan and the Garcia Yachts teams, as the sound universe of a boat, surrounded by various noises emitted in a very wide range of frequencies, differs from that of a perfectly controlled recording studio or auditorium. The technician explains: “the high level of insulation of the Garcia Exploration, with 74 mm of high-density foam all around the cabin, or double-glazed windows in the saloon, or even wood-foam sandwich floors, is not only efficient from a thermal point of view alone: this also has a strong influence on the general sound comfort, with a highly absorbent environment that is in fact suitable for listening to music, since no outside noise filters through and no resonance is created by the interior sounds”.

All the more reasons to adopt on board this Exploration 45 several of the fundamentals dear to audiophiles: this is the case of the air vent serving as a bass vent, as well as the very layout of the speakers, which may surprise you because they are located on either side of the galley. This installation is in fact designed to reproduce an astonishing true stereophonic image, which takes its full measure on the other side of the cabin of the Exploration 45, at the level of the saloon benches. “The result is convincing, but I’m sure that we can do even better to satisfy the requirements of our customers,” says Yvan, who would happily fall into the category of those who never give up when it comes to raising the level of quality offered.

The control system is very practical too,” says Yann, calling up this or that track from his virtual music library with a simple press on the digital tablet controlling this audio system.

No doubt, whether in the Aegean Sea or anywhere else, our skipper, comfortably installed in this listening area, will be able to keep a long watch, even in the middle of the night and under the intense flow of the Meltem, taking advantage as much of the ability to manoeuvre his sail from the pilot saloon, as of Billie Holiday’s so emotional, soulful vocal register.