Setting up a successful post production workflow is a challenge. There are many questions that have to be answered. You have to ask yourself, “What format will we shoot our media? How will we store it safely? What format will we edit our media? What format do we need to deliver our media?” and even “What do we do with our media to keep it safe once we are done?”
Then there are other variables as well…things such as the need to view media remotely on the go, having a bunch of editors and collaborators using different software, and having your client’s expectations and needs change during your time working with them. There are many companies that offer different solutions to each of these dilemmas. Finding the one company that did it all well was like hunting unicorn…impossible. But post production professionals can rejoice because there is a company that does it all, and they are snuggled deep into Allston, Ma.
EditShare started as a company that did only shared storage, but as the post production industry evolved, so did EditShare. EditShare has opened up their offerings to solve every problem you could ever encounter when creating content and delivering media. They do so much now, that I would argue that the name “EditShare” does not accurately show what they are capable of.
I recently attended a four day long seminar in their Allston home base. In those 4 days, EditShare had an international audience whom they gave a deep dive into all of their products. EditShare’s reach is growing year over year and they are now a staple in the international post production industry. This month in Tech Edge, I will give you a primer on each of EditShare’s offerings. They are available end to end or a la carte. Whether you need to build a complete post production workflow solution, of fill in a hole that you are currently missing, EditShare can help.
Geevs – Ingest and Playout
With file based video creation and delivery now the norm, it seems that baseband capture and play out has moved to the back burner. Baseband video capture used to be something that you would outfit for each edit bay with its own video capture devices. Baseband video capture has moved to the server room. Facilities now will get one server that does baseband video capture and just capture that media to a shared storage where people can all use the media in real time.
Video capture used to be done with an editing application, but now people will do it with a small application (as EditShare does) or even in a web browser. Geevs is EditShare’s answer to this problem. Geevs Client is EditShare’s client software that enables you to set up all these fabulous baseband video captures.
Shared storage used to be something exclusive to server rooms with big heavy iron servers. EditShare has created a field shared storage device called XStream Field 2. They also offer the traditional server setups as well, however, XStream is the only shared storage appliance that can fit in an FDA regulation size airline carry on bag. This makes what was once unimaginable, collaboration on the road, the simplest ever.
XStream supports up to fourteen direct ethernet editing clients, or a 10GB fiber connection to uplink to a switch for even more editing clients should you need it. There is also no need to bring an IO device for baseband capture either, as Stream has two SDI ports directly on it. For total editing video stream count, the device supports eight streams of DNx145 or ProRez 422. This makes Stream that most versatile shared storage divide on the market.
Organizing footage can be a daunting task. It is one thing to capture a clip of video and keep it on shared storage, but it’s another thing to make that media easy to search after the capture. The Flow line from EditShare offers easy media searching, cloud-based metadata management, task automation, logging and some ingest.
Flow offers the easiest metadata tagging I have ever seen. Flow allows you to create one click tags of keywords that you would search for, and not only that, you have options to make tasks mandatory. This prevents employees who cut corners with metadata tagging. You can force tagging on checkin. But you and your employees will likely not mind this at all because Flow makes metadata tagging an actual enjoyable experience. I found tagging metadata with Flow to be as easy and intuitive, that I would trust a child with it.
Once your production is done, you have hopefully done a great enough job to score another gig. Now you have to wonder how you are going to make space on your storage for the next job, while keeping the media from your previous job available should that older client’s media may need to resurface. This is where Ark comes in.
Ark is EditShare’s archive solution. Do you want a LTO tape based archive? No problem. Do you want a hard disk based archive? Also, no problem. Ark Tape will give you the LTO deep archive you need and Ark Disk will give you the near chive you want. Some might ask, “what is a ‘nearchive’ exactly?” Well a near chive is a disk based semi-archive were facilities will keep low bandwidth proxy versions of their media for playback. Near chives will usually house your full resolution media as well, but real time playback can get dicey.
Some of the great things that Ark can do are email you when your archive and/or restores are done. It can also do partial restores of media. Need only two minutes of that three hour long clip? Ark will restore only that two minutes you need. It also supports automated nightly backups.
Steve McGrath is a Broadcast Sales Engineer for HB Communications. He has worked with NBC, ABC, CBS, NESN, NECN, Fox, ESPN, Pentagon, Powderhouse and many others. You can reach him at Steve.McGrath@HBCommunications.com. Learn more, visit www.HBCommunications.com.