Thanks to the pandemic, I’m getting in many Huddle Room solutions to test, and one of them that stands out is the Konftel C2070. This solution is a platform-independent system, meaning that it uses a PC or laptop for connectivity and isn’t hard tied to any of the video conferencing platforms.
Given the diversity of solutions and the fact the market is bifurcated between Microsoft Teams, WebEx, and Zoom at the moment, I prefer hardware solutions that are agnostic. You don’t want any artificial barriers to connecting or collaborating on top of the natural barriers of having to do these things remotely.
Let’s talk about the Konftel C2030 this week.
A Green Product
One of the interesting, and to date, unique aspects of the Konftel C2070 is that it is presented as a Green product. Not only is the company aggressively mitigating its climate impact overall, but the product comes shipped in highly recyclable packaging. Konftel embraces the Climate Neutral Standard, which means they have offset their greenhouse gas emissions.
With Global Warming now doing substantial damage to the environment, more and more companies are demanding products from companies who are aggressively fighting the related pollution. Konftel is doing more than most to stand out as one of the greener companies thanks to their being certified to carry the Climate Neutral brand on this product.
In contrast with some of the other huddle room products I’ve tested, which were highly integrated one product offerings containing speakers, microphone, and camera, the Kofitel C2070 is a bundle of three products that distribute the functions better for larger and particularly longer rooms.
The Camera (Konftel Cam20) that comes in the bundle is impressive, as it is a 4K camera with an 8K zoom and has, at 123 degrees, one of the wildest viewing angles of any of the cameras I’ve so far tested in this class.
The 8X zoom is handy for focusing on things more pronounced in the room, thus the long room advantage mentioned above. The image quality is impressively good; there is simply a massive advantage with 4K cameras in this space because you can zoom in to the image remotely while retaining an impressive amount of detail.
The speaker and microphone are in the Konftel 70 voice system, which places both in the center of the table much as we did, and still does, with conference room speakerphones. The sound quality is excellent with the speaker. The Beamforming microphones and central placement are arguably better than the all-in-one solutions that place both the speaker and the microphone with the camera, making it far harder for someone in the back of the room to hear or be heard.
The final component is the OCC Hub which connects the Speakerphone and camera into a single break-out box and provides a single USB cable for laptop connectivity to connect the laptop you are presenting from and use that laptop as the host for the video conferencing service. It also comes with a wireless remote to manage and control the experience even if you aren’t sitting next to the PC.
Installation was straightforward, and I was up and running in 15 minutes. I did have trouble downloading updated drivers, but the system seemed to work fine without them as I had no issues getting the camera, microphones, and speaker to work for a video conference call.
I do wish they had included cable ties, though, as there are several cables to manage several that could be neatened up into bundles. The kit also came with Velcro to more solidly attach the conference phone and the hub to the table.
As far as Huddle Room solutions go, the Konftel C2070 solution, priced at $749, is one of the best I’ve ever tested. It is a bundled system allowing you to distribute the components around the room, arguably making the solution far easier to use and have far better sound and camera coverage for larger, and particularly longer, rooms.
It will work with all of the large video conferencing providers and works particularly well in larger and particularly deeper huddle rooms and small conference rooms. If you need something for an even bigger room, they have the Konftel C5070 with an even more impressive camera at $1,299, but I haven’t tested it.
If you need a Huddle room solution that puts the microphone and speakers in the middle of the table where they are generally more effective, check out the Konftel C2070. The fact that it is a relatively green solution makes it that much sweeter.