Optocore Festival Box scores on live circuit
Tuesday, 15 October 2019
spice-girlsdublintimms0004Spice Girls in Dublin (Photo credit: Andrew Timms)
Europe - Optocore’s Festival Box has been successfully deployed on a number of festivals and tours this summer.
As demo systems were released to targeted dealers and production companies around the world, Optocore technical sales manager, Maciek Janiszewski, said, “It is gratifying that customers have trusted us with delivering a completely new device concept and placed it immediately on high-profile tours and festivals.”
Early adopters have included Billie Eilish and Spice Girls, both with Wigwam, while festivals have ranged from the mighty Sziget in Hungary and KFPP Opole in Poland, to Parklife and Bluedot festivals in the north of England.
Festival Box allows any audio protocol as well as video and data to tunnel over the same fibre, making it an efficient solution for multi-act scenarios. Migrating the technology from sister company BroaMan’s Repeat48WDM media converter, which uses Repeat48-2Fiber modules at its source, it offers countless conversion options, supporting all fibre protocols as well as Cat5 Ethernet-based standards or even HDMI, since the standard SFP optical module transceivers are hot swappable.
“With each sound engineer bringing different consoles to festivals, running different protocols to the stage box, everything can now be transported down Festival Box using just a single duplex fibre, thereby saving a tremendous amount of cabling between FOH and Stage,” continued Janiszewski.
Alex Hadjigeorgiou, from Optocore-BroaMan dealer, fac365, reports, “It’s been very well-received and we’ve had really positive feedback,” he said. “This year has been all about getting the concept across. In some ways the name ‘Festival Box’ restricts it as it is so much more than that: it’s perfect for running complete touring infrastructure down it, using just two fibres.”
In Poland, GMB Pro Sound have had it out at the Open’er Festival at Gdynia Airport, Krakow Live Festival and Festival Opole, as well as on tour with Meskie Granie. Festival Box also provided an efficient solution at the Sweden Rock Festival in Solvesborg, supplied by Soundware Sweden, Sziget in Hungary (via Leon Szolgaltato Ltd), while in the north of England fac365 supplied the devices to dbnAudile (for Parklife and Bluedot).
Said GMB Pro Sound director, Remigiusz Kasztelnik, “Festival Box might be a new concept but those who have tried it have immediately found it extremely useful, especially when there are different protocols in place. The big advantage is simplicity—there is no software or configuration necessary; you just plug in the cable onstage and FOH, and pair the stage boxes and consoles - whether Cat5, coax or fibre.
Wigwam co-founder Chris Hill added, “I have always liked the quality of Optocore products and what they stand for. Festival Box has already dug us out of a couple of holes, and is proving to be a very useful tool.”
It made sense to invest for many reasons, he said. “When Spice Girls came along we put it on as a data tunnel so we could put comms, video, the support band console and remote aerials through it. It got used heavily, and proved to be very flexible, reducing the number of cables to plug in at front of house.”
(Jim Evans)

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