Europe?s largest open-air festival looks to Digico

Rental company Concept Solutions this year provided Donauinselfest, or Danube Island Festival, with two Digico SD8s for FOH and monitor duties.

Concept Solutions’ Raphael Rupprecht explained the process of working such a large-scale event: “This is a three-day festival featuring open-air stages around the island,” he said. “We started working at 9am every day, bands arrived at 10am for soundcheck and the show itself ran from 3pm to 12pm. It was a huge workload – we had to set up our standard backline, plus the individual amps and instruments for each band and sometimes there were as many as four drum kits on stage waiting to be miked up – but all acts ran smoothly and the overall mood was great. 

“The starting point for each act was a standard console setup, which was adapted as needed. I had prepared eight effects: drum plate, percussion room, medium plate, guitar chorus, vocal plate, warm hall, simple delay, kick ambience, which was plenty for most requirements.

“The SD8’s onboard matrix allows for 12 busses in addition to the 24 stereo busses, which is very special. We used this to feed main PA, subs, outfill, frontfill, delays and VIP area. The full processing, plus dynamic EQs and multiband dynamics, even on the matrix busses, resulted in a powerful and perfectly balanced sound in every area, which was very nice.” 

Many of the bands brought their own FOH engineer with them, with Rupprecht mixing those that didn’t. Concept solutions also provided a monitor engineer, as very few bands took their own.

“The SD8 has 24 stereo auxes for in-ear monitoring, all with full processing, plus a stereo master for side fills, so this was plenty for everything we needed,” added Raphael. “The Gain Tracking feature of the SD8s was used to share the same racks between FOH and monitors, which was a great relief as in previous years we had to use huge analog splitters. This time we had less equipment, straight and clean wiring, plus better reliability – who wouldn’t like that? It’s so quick to use these desks that changeovers were completed in half the time scheduled.”