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How Do Media Storage Tiers Work in Post Production?

With video production projects ranging in size and scale, you can’t address media storage needs with a one-size-fits-all approach. Let’s say you’re an editor at a boutique post house or a producer on a corporate video production team, and you’re planning a big new project—one featuring dozens of interviews, hours of illustrative footage, and some fancy motion graphics to boot. It’s also going to shoot on expensive, high-end cameras delivering massive files. You’re on a tight deadline, so you’ll need multiple editors working on it consistently.

Do you rent or buy storage? Which media storage tiers do you need to make it all happen, and how much of each tier do you need? Getting through a big project like this means artfully leveraging different media storage tiers throughout the various stages of post production.

Three Tiers of Media Storage

There are three main tiers of media storage:

  • Online. This is fast, high-performance media storage for real-time workflows. It tends to be more expensive and therefore usually has limited capacity. (Think fast SSD storage.)
  • Nearline. Nearline media storage is slower but has a larger capacity—media is still readily accessible, but the storage doesn’t deliver the same level of performance (nor the same level of expense) as online media storage.
  • Archive. Archives mean inexpensive, large-capacity storage that is typically inaccessible without some level of human interaction (such as loading an LTO tape). This is also often called offline storage.

You’ll also see hybrid cloud storage setups, which store some footage in the cloud rather than on-prem. (And in today’s remote world, more houses are turning to the cloud for the accessibility it offers.) The cloud can play a role in any media storage tier, but it is most commonly used for nearline and archival storage, since online workflows require quite high bandwidth to meet performance requirements.

Tiered Storage and Editorial Workflows

Some editorial workflows are online at all times. This is especially true of projects working with smaller amounts of media and tighter turnarounds—all high-resolution media stays constantly available on a fast online storage tier until the end of the project, when the completed edit will move to archive storage to make room for the next project.

But on a big project with many hours of footage, budget limitations or editorial requirements can eliminate that possibility. This is usually when a more traditional proxy workflow comes into play. Here, the online storage tier hosts the creation and storage of lower-resolution proxy files, while the original camera media with high resolutions (and large file sizes) are stored on a nearline tier for later use.

When the final edit is locked, the timeline can then be “onlined,” wherein only media that made it into the final cut moves from the nearline tier to the online media tier. This replaces proxy media with high-resolution original camera files, which then can be used for final color correction, motion graphics, and delivery. In those later stages, more powerful performance helps keep a real-time workflow ticking along. Once everything is delivered, the entire project can then be safely stored on the archive media tier.

Planning for each tier requires balancing three vital capabilities: performance, scalability, and reliability.

Performance—How Fast Do You Need to Go?

Your media storage should deliver the level of performance required to play back the files you’re working with, in real time, to however many editors need access at the same time. Although capacity might spring to mind first—after all, you need enough space to fit everything—there’s no point in having terabytes to spare if it’s all too slow to play back the media you have at the right speed.

To start: how many editors will need to access the storage at the same time? And how many streams (or layers or feeds) of video will each editor need to play back simultaneously? Here’s where a bit of math helps.

Editors x Video Streams x Bit Rate of each stream = required throughput speed (Performance), or E x VS x BR = P

For example, two editors cutting multicamera shows with, say, four cameras each will need to play back eight streams of video at the same time from shared media storage. Each of those video streams will be stored in a specific codec (flavor of video, e.g., ProRes, DNxHD, H.264 etc.) and use a specific bit rate (bits per second). Generally, the higher the bit rate, the better quality the video and the bigger the file size.

To layer onto the example, the bit rate for 1920 x 1080 HD ProRes video at 29.97 frames per second is 147 Mb/s (megabits per second), so:

2 editors x 4 streams X 147 Mb/s ProRes = 1,176 Mb/s. Because megabits (Mb) are 1/8th of a megabyte (MB), this math happens to work out to needing to transfer 147MB/s.

Check your own figures, then look at the online media storage in question. Can it deliver—at a minimum—this level of performance? If it can’t, choppy, stuttering playback may threaten to hamper creativity and productivity, both of which most teams can’t afford to lose.

Scalability—How Much Room Do You Need to Grow?

Capacity will be an important consideration across every tier of your storage. Still, higher-performance online storage is going to be more expensive, which can limit exactly how much of it you have to work with.

Also consider that needs change. Will your tiered media storage allow you to expand its capacity?

If you’re making a substantial investment in a shared storage solution, it should be able to expand over the working lifetime of the hardware. Check whether you’ll be able to reconfigure the storage yourself (such as when adding more capacity) and whether any downtime is acceptable during that process. (These types of technological hurdles can make it worth investing in a media storage solution that comes with reliable technical support.)

Reliability—How Safe Is Your Media from Sudden Disaster?

Keeping your media safe has to involve incorporating a level of redundancy into any storage calculation you make.

Storage systems typically accomplish this with RAID (redundant array of individual disks). This means that, spread across the entire array of individual drives that make up a complete storage solution, each drive will keep a partial backup of another drive. This eats up some of the initial total capacity—however, if one drive fails, the other drives can rebuild the contents of that failed drive from their duplicates. Another layer of redundancy is to have a complete off-site backup in case of fire or theft, sometimes being drip-fed to the cloud. These kinds of backup measures protect not only your media but your budgets (and potentially reputation) in the case that disaster strikes.

There’s always a bit of pain involved in large investments, but take comfort in the fact that unpredictable disasters and other complexities can blow out a budget just as easily, and to much greater damage. A small post house choosing to save money by rolling their own tiered media storage is responsible for the time-consuming tasks of wrangling media between systems and maintaining different technology from a variety of suppliers. And if the system fails, they may still lose valuable client media. A well-thought-out plan for shared media storage helps take a lot of that stress out of the equation.

Media Storage Buyer’s Guide

Baffled by your shared storage options? Start here.




Why the Cloud Matters for the Media and Entertainment Industry

Cloud computing has dominated the IT conversation for many years now, but the media and entertainment industry has lagged behind. While the past few years have seen a handful of innovators migrating certain workflows to the cloud, it took a disaster on the scale of the global coronavirus pandemic for the broader industry to seriously consider what cloud solutions could do for media production.

While the impetus to move to the cloud may be a scary one, there’s never been a better time for media enterprises to investigate cloud-based workflows. Even after the current crisis passes, cloud-enabled media enterprises will benefit from increased agility and efficiency.

Cloud Enables Media Enterprises to Work Efficiently

To succeed in today’s increasingly competitive marketplace, media enterprises need to focus more of their resources on creating and monetizing content, and less of their resources on managing infrastructure. For media enterprises, cloud architectures offer the promise of infrastructure that is more flexible, agile, and self-managing.

Although workflows have become increasingly streamlined, demands for even greater efficiency have presented new challenges for content creators. In a case of the tail wagging the dog, the demand by consumers for content on any device, distributed across any network, puts pressure on content producers and distributors to deliver more finished products to these consumers. In response, they are ramping up workflows, investing in applications and relevant infrastructure simply to meet demand. However, this may not be the most pragmatic approach, nor the most cost-efficient.

How the Cloud Works for Media Enterprises

Migrating from a traditional on-premises solution to a cloud-based platform can help address the need for agility and economy. At its most basic level, the cloud provides a more cost-effective platform for fulfilling unpredictable spikes in demand. At a more strategic level, the cloud provides a platform for aligning the needs of both creative and business teams.

In the cloud, virtualized applications and servers become resource pools that can be dynamically reconfigured and provisioned as needs change. Imagine allocating resources to address ingest of source material during the day, then re-allocating those same resources to do transcoding or rendering in the evening.

Using the Cloud to Address Globalization

A global consumer base with a ravenous appetite for snackable and bingeable content is pushing media enterprises to ensure content is not only available in a wide variety of formats, but also customized for diverse audiences in disparate geographies. The globalization of the media marketplace has forced media companies to embrace global workforces to translate and tailor content to specific audiences.

Cloud-based workflows address the needs of a global workforce in multiple ways—in addition to streamlining access to media from any location, the cloud enables media enterprises to work with talent based anywhere, opening up a literal world of possibilities away from established production hubs.

Cloud-Based Media Production Provides Risk Mitigation

Beyond enabling distributed teams, the ability to work remotely also provides insurance against the inability to access physical infrastructure. While the COVID-19 pandemic is a particularly dramatic illustration of these challenges, smaller-scale disruptions happen all the time. Forward-thinking media enterprises need to proactively manage these risks to protect business continuity.

Assessing Media Operations Infrastructure

Accelerating industry-wide pressures mean that media organizations require an operations infrastructure that the cloud is uniquely well-positioned to support:

  • Dynamic allocation of resources to address high-intensity workloads
  • Remote access to media to enable a globally distributed workforce
  • Content security by eliminating single points of failure
  • Integration with existing business systems
  • Safeguards to protect business continuity

Planning Your Media Enterprise Journey to the Cloud

What media production workflows could your organization migrate to the cloud, and how will you make the transition? Start building your roadmap today.




My IBC Experience

I’m back from another IBC, my 12th, and it was an exciting IBC as the show was full of new developments that continue to push the industry forward at a significant pace.  IBC for many years was often a repeat of what was shown and discussed at NAB for a lot of companies and was an opportunity to reinforce key messaging, as well as show incremental enhancements to product announcements made back at NAB the prior April.

The Avid booth at IBC 2019

Due to the accelerated pace of an ever changing media and entertainment landscape driven by consumers demand for content delivered on their devices on their time, IBC has become a launchpad for new innovations and major new partnership announcements, many of which have happened in the relatively short timeframe between NAB and IBC.

One of the major key announcements at IBC was centered around social media and digital distribution and the MediaCentral platform.  Avid unveiled a new and improved MediaCentral | Publisher app, a first-of-its-kind SaaS offering for the MediaCentral platform, powered by Wildmoka. Not only does this significantly improve the software’s ability to get content out fast across more social and digital platforms, but also it enables media companies to insert ads and calls to action that drive revenue on those platforms while engaging with and building their audience.

Data shows that there are over 5 billion unique mobile phone users in the world who are increasingly accessing content on mobile devices that are getting more powerful, with the bulk of their time spent browsing video content.  Of course, the ramifications here are significant both operationally and economically. As more eyes move to mobile platforms, so have advertisers, with digital ad spending eclipsing television ad spending for the first time recently.

MediaCentral | Publisher app

Data also shows that getting the story out first across social and digital platforms significantly increases a media company’s ability to realize more revenue and build their audience and the difference can be a matter of minutes or even seconds.  For news, sports, and media companies, establishing that one-to-one relationship with consumers on social and digital platforms is critical to the present and future of the business.

This is why Avid delivered a more robust way to deliver fast, and deliver first, across all platforms.  MediaCentral l Publisher auto-provisions everything you need, provides tools to enhance content (aspect ratio resizing, closed captioning, titling, 3D motion graphics overlays, and more), enables audience engagement through interactive calls to action (think sponsorship and branding), and allows for ad insertion using server side pre, mid, and post roll ads.

Always forward-thinking, Avid showcased a tech preview of its IP contribution and distribution solution called FastServe l Stream. As part of a partnership with Microsoft® and Haivision® it was a showcase of IP contribution and distribution that leverages Avid’s FastServe | Stream technology and its ability to accept incoming SRT streams from any SRT enabled device or hublet. SRT is the open source protocol from Haivision that enables secure reliable transport of content across standard internet connections, but also it was a launch partner of SRT Hub. SRT Hub is an initiative between Microsoft® and Haivision® that leverages the SRT protocol and delivers a SaaS offering that enables the routing of video across the Azure network (live and file based), for delivering content securely from anywhere to anywhere using any SRT enabled device or any SRT hublet.

This combined solution enables news and sports organizations to expand their coverage at a lower cost (think a single reporter with an SRT enabled mobile device covering a story vs. sending a truck or video crew with a journalist) while not compromising on quality for both on premise and cloud-based news and sports productions.  Avid showed the ability to accept incoming SRT streams either from an SRT enabled device or from SRT Hub, unwrap and rewrap that content in an Avid friendly format, and check that streamed media into an Avid Production environment for fast access via MediaCentral or Media Composer.

In the future, companies will be able to plug Avid tools into any IP based workflow including news, sports, and remote live production scenarios where companies are increasingly adopting IP based solutions to deliver content over standard internet connections.  This not only lowers costs (satellite or fiber) but also reduces the resources required to deliver an event allowing the bulk of the production crew and talent to remain in place in the studio while still delivering a compelling broadcast.

SRT Hub at IBC

It also enables broader coverage by news and sports crews so that they can send fewer resources to cover any story with just a reporter and an SRT enabled device.  Last but not least, it allows users to route content easily across the Azure network to deliver content faster to more digital and social destinations leveraging the SRT hub running in the Azure cloud for occasional and 24×7 linear channel delivery use cases.

Here’s a rundown of other exciting solutions shared at this year’s IBC in Amsterdam:

 

  • Media Composer will deliver native support for Apple’s ProRes RAW camera codec and support for ProRes playback and encoding on Windows. In addition, Apple® will provide 64-bit decoders for DNxHR and DNxHD codecs within the Pro Video Formats package that is available from Apple as a free download for all users.

 

  • IBC was the European Debut of Media Composer which created a massive buzz when it launched at NAB in April. The user interface was redesigned for better, more efficient use as well as enabling custom user profiles that expose only the capabilities needed by different roles within any broadcast, film, or post facility. Though, it’s perhaps the work that was done under the hood which enables distributed processing that is just as noteworthy; it allows available CPU cycles on the network to be leveraged for rendering purposes significantly diminishing the time it takes to render even UHD effects and content.

 

  • Avid Edit On Demand is Avid’s cloud-based editing solution, and it’s not just Media Composer running in the cloud. Rather, is a full infrastructure that includes compute, NEXIS Cloud storage, and bandwidth all auto provisioned and running in the cloud allowing users to spin up the resources they need to take on any job paying only for what they use. This runs in Azure and includes Teradici clients for secure access and File Catalyst for quickly moving content into and out of the cloud.  There is an early access program and you can sign up here.

 

  • Avid’s Audio group continues to make waves in the industry, having announced the Avid S1 and S4 consoles at Summer NAMM in Nashville. Those consoles were on display on the show floor and in a meeting room where users could see it in action. Perhaps the most important thing to note about the Avid S4 and the Avid S1 is that now anyone can take advantage of what was once only reserved for larger budget productions. Both consoles offer high end capabilities with attractive economics and a variety of I/O possibilities that meet the demands of any sized production.

 

  • Avid’s graphics team also announced its next generation of graphics server hardware, Maestro l Engine 4K, which has higher channel counts, supports HDR, UHD, IP, and SDI I/O. Maestro l Engine drives Avid graphics solutions and leverages the Epic Unreal engine for rendering photo realistic images in real time for use with virtual sets, data-driven augmented reality, and video wall solutions for news and sports. This enables broadcasters to economically change the look and feel of their news and sports programs while also engaging audiences on traditional and digital platforms.

IBC was exhausting (in the best way) and Avid had no shortage of new innovations and new partnerships to highlight.  It is an amazing time to be a part of this industry as the disruption that is happening is like no other time in the history of broadcast and media and entertainment from a technology and economic perspective.

I’m looking forward now to NAB and what I know will be more new innovations that continue to move the industry further!

 

WATCH ALL IBC HIGHLIGHTS




Hit Rewind on IBC 2019

Another great IBC is in the books! We unveiled a handful of new and improved products that enhance our existing lineup of flexible, collaborative tools to help creators like you get the job done. To us, the highlights of the show were all about connecting with attendees and talking everything workflow solutions.

Demos and training sessions led by Avid pros were valuable for hands-on learning and discovery of key features that benefit audio, video, and broadcast media. Visitors on the show floor were able to check out many of our new and existing solutions, with editing, graphics, media management, storage, and collaboration tools at the ready.

As always, the IBC show is a platform for lots of big news. This year, there was no bigger story than the new partnership between The Walt Disney Studios and Microsoft, who are innovating new ways to create, produce and distribute content in the cloud, and Avid is thrilled to be working closely with them. Variety gave its take on this watershed development for the media and entertainment business.

Jeff Rosica of Avid, Ben Havey of Disney Studios, and Tad Brockway of Microsoft

Our speaking sessions were a hit too, with Oscar®-winning editor Chris Dickens and music editor Andy Patterson on hand to discuss Paramount’s 2019 musical masterpiece Rocketman.

If you couldn’t make it to the show, we’ve got you covered. Check out these highlights from IBC 2019 and browse our social media channels to see the updates we posted from Amsterdam.

Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | LinkedIn | YouTube | Pinterest

Modern solutions and refreshed features

In today’s cluttered world of content consumption, it’s essential that your breaking news and creative productions are published quickly and seamlessly. Our new SaaS offering, which debuted at IBC, is powered by Wildmoka and pushes your compelling content straight to social media—boosting viewership with a few clicks.

Pro Tools also got a refresh with the latest release, powering creators to mix bigger, smarter, and faster so that they can flex their creative muscles. Looking for a bargain to kick off your next big sound? The Avid S4 is coming soon and packs the power of Pro Tools | S6 for budget-conscious pros, whether you’re creating music, designing sound, mixing immersive audio, or teaching audio production.

Here’s the scoop on everything new and improved from Avid:

 

MediaCentral | Publisher

MediaCentral l Publisher, a new SaaS offering powered by Wildmoka, empowers media producers to create content, add graphics and branding, and publish news and sports videos quickly to stay ahead of the competition.

Start sharing on social

 

Media Composer

Avid’s flagship video editing system Media Composer 2019 is reimagined for today’s—and tomorrow’s—generation of media makers, with a new user experience and a customizable role-based interface built for large teams.

What’s new in editing

 

FastServe

FastServe | Ingest, Live Edit, and Playout are tightly integrated with Avid NEXIS and MediaCentral to accelerate ingest, editing, and playout workflows while supporting higher channel counts and a lower overall cost.

Find your workflow

 

Avid NEXIS | Cloudspaces

IBC marked the European debut of Avid NEXIS | Cloudspaces™, a powerful tool that takes the stress out of media management by auto-provisioning cloud storage to leverage the power of Microsoft Azure.

Check out the cloud

 

Pro Tools

From master music creators and aspiring artists to top-echelon audio post professionals and engineers, Pro Tools 2019 enables you to work faster with more creative flexibility and collaboration on the most complex projects.

Discover your sound

 

Avid S4 and S1

The new Avid S4 brings the power of Pro Tools | S6 to budget-conscious professionals, while the soon-to-be-delivered Avid S1 gives you the speed and software integration you need to deliver better-sounding mixes faster.

Mix music like a pro

 

If you want more information about these solutions or any of Avid’s new offerings, getting in touch is a breeze. Connect with us to explore your options for seamless productions, no matter the size of your next audio, video, or broadcast media production.

 

DROP US A NOTE

New style, same Avid

In case you missed it we also unveiled a new look and feel for Avid at IBC. The change is subtle, stemming from our need for a bold, modernized way to share who we are with all the amazingly talented creators, editors, and producers in audio, video, and broadcast media.

In the coming months you’ll spot small changes on our website and in our email communication that reflect this style tune-up. Have feedback? Get in touch and drop us a note!

In the meantime, keep checking back for IBC highlights, more information about our new solutions, and the latest news about everything Avid.

 

Oscar is a registered trademark and service mark of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.




A Super-Simple Way to Safely Park and Back up Projects to the Cloud — Introducing Avid NEXIS | Cloudspaces

As production teams create more immersive, rich video content, they are paving the way for deeper engagement with audiences. But that higher-quality media comes with larger, more complex projects. Teams need the ability to back up or park storage workspaces quickly and easily to protect project files and keep content production moving forward. And, unless there’s a secret stash of money lying around, budget constraints make large, up-front purchases of more storage difficult if not impossible.

The answer is cloud-based storage. Our newest addition to the multi-award winning Avid NEXIS family is just the solution.

Avid NEXIS | Cloudspaces is designed for small- to medium-size news, sports, and post-production organizations that need to back up or free up their Avid NEXIS storage space. As an add-on service, it enables your team to store onsite projects and media offsite and scale storage space as needed on demand, in the cloud. Unlike other solutions, it doesn’t require additional software components or complex configuration to set up and maintain. That means lower costs, less risk, and fewer administrative errors.

Making Life Easier for Editors, Assistant Editors, Journalists, and Producers

Say you’re an editor, assistant editor, journalist, or producer in a post-production environment using Avid NEXIS storage. You need a way to park finished projects and media not currently in production so you can easily find and retrieve them in the future.

If your Avid NEXIS storage is full, you need to manually shuttle media to external NAS/DAS storage devices, making it hard to find the clips you need. Avid NEXIS | Cloudspaces makes it super easy to offload media, finished content, and suspended projects from your Avid NEXIS system to the cloud. And because Avid NEXIS workspaces and cloudspaces are both managed through the Avid NEXIS Management Console, it’s easy to organize,  find, retrieve, and restore what you need fast. With Cloudspaces, you no longer waste time searching for and wrangling media. That means more time to create projects and faster turnaround!

You also want to back up media and project files offsite while making sure your latest changes are protected. But backing up media offsite takes time and can be complicated. Avid NEXIS | Cloudspaces works like an extension of your on-premises Avid NEXIS workspaces, enabling you to safely back up media and project files to offsite cloudspaces. It eliminates complex processes and management while safeguarding your projects from loss.

Designed to Support Business Owners, CTOs, Engineers, IT Managers and System Architects

If you’re on the technical side of the house, you want a simple and safe way to back up media and projects offsite. But setting up and maintaining an offsite system is time-consuming and complex. That’s because it often involves additional hardware, multiple software components and labor intensive processes. That’s not the case with Avid NEXIS | Cloudspaces.

Avid NEXIS | Cloudspaces’ fully integrated offsite storage solution is incredibly simple to enable, set up, and maintain—with zero learning curve. You can activate and configure it quickly from the Avid NEXIS Management Console while leveraging your Avid NEXIS user access controls for built-in end-to-end security. And it uses the same familiar Avid NEXIS workspace semantics, making management easy.

Plus, with Avid NEXIS | Cloudspaces, it’s super easy for editors to offload media, finished content, and suspended projects from Avid NEXIS to the cloud. That means no more time-consuming manual processes and additional hardware for you to maintain.

Wouldn’t it be nice if you had a simple way to integrate a secure and effective backup solution that won’t disrupt production? As you know, integrating new systems can impact production if it involves any changes to the workflow or training. The good news is that teams can safely back up and park media to Avid NEXIS | Cloudspaces without having to learn new processes or change their workflow. Workspaces can be synced to your cloudspaces, without requiring any editor involvement. And media can be parked in the cloud to free up Avid NEXIS storage space, so production keeps moving.

You Too Can Try Backing Up and Parking Projects in the Cloud – For Free!!!

Avid NEXIS | Cloudspaces offers a fully integrated offsite storage solution—without requiring any additional hardware or software. Simply upgrade your Avid NEXIS Enterprise or Avid NEXIS | PRO storage systems to the latest release of the Avid NEXIS | FS file system software (2019.4 or later).  Then choose from a variety of subscription plans in your Avid Account and get 3 months of free Cloudspaces storage.

Stop investing money in NAS or DAS storage drives that add complexity and risk to production workflows every time you need extra storage. With Avid NEXIS | Cloudspaces, you can match your storage expense to your business needs, easily scale up your capacity as needed, and safely park and back up media while leveraging Avid NEXIS to manage your on-premises workspaces and cloudspaces together for greater workflow efficiency.

Remember, all Avid NEXIS systems come with 2 TB of cloud storage  so you can start storing media in the cloud immediately. What are you waiting for?

Instantly expand your Avid NEXIS storage to the cloud

For small- to medium-size news, sports, and post-production organizations, Avid NEXIS | Cloudspaces provides a super-simple way to park projects in the cloud, as well as sync onsite Avid NEXIS workspaces for easy offsite backup.




CÉGEP de Jonquière Uses CEV to Upgrade its Media Production Infrastructure with Avid Media Campus

Located in Saguenay, Quebec, the CÉGEP de Jonquière is recognized as the ideal place to study in Art and Technology Media (radio, advertising, journalism, television production and postproduction and multimedia integration.) Indeed, many graduates of this French technical College acquire coveted jobs in the media and visual effects industry.

Since its creation in 1967, the CÉGEP de Jonquière has seen audio – video technology evolve dramatically over the years. Its early adoption of Avid editing and other digital media tools underscores its commitment to educate the next generation of professionals such as journalists, visual effects designers, editors, cameramen, and audio professionals – using the latest technological solutions.

 

Keeping pace with technology

To remain on the cutting edge of digital content creation, the Cégep de Jonquière asked CEV Inc.,- an elite Avid reseller in Montreal—to help them upgrade their Avid equipment and infrastructure, including TV news, audio and post-production studios. Known for its high level of engagement with customers and technical support, including trained and certified Avid technicians, CEV has been working with the school for the past 15 years, upgrading its technology every five years.

With this latest upgrade, the Cégep de Jonquière has taken a leap forward, transforming its production infrastructure into an avant-garde Avid Media campus. Introduced by Avid in April 2017, Avid Media Campus is a new program that provides schools with flexible licensing and deployment options to better train their students using the latest video and audio production solutions and creative collaboration workflows.

“The beauty of this approach is that everything, including studios and multimedia resources, is seamlessly integrated into a unified workflow and collaborative user experience,” says Justin Meunier, VP Sales – Broadcast, Digital Media & IT Solutions at CEV. The CÉGEP has deployed Avid Media Campus throughout, including its main production and broadcast studio, audio production studio, news and editing rooms.

Maximum Creativity

“Avid Media Campus enables us to support schools and universities worldwide to help teach and nurture the next generation of creative talent and media professionals, “said Tom Cordiner, Avid’s Senior Vice President of Global Sales. “The CÉGEP de Jonquière is a key educational partner for us in Canada, helping us to train students who will ultimately shape what and how we watch the news delivered from our Canadian broadcast customers.”

«Avid Media Campus» is based on the «Avid MediaCentral/Cloud UX», which enables all aspects of end-to-end multimedia production. The CÉGEP students in Jonquière can work and collaborate with each other in real time and share media resources from a unified environment, from anywhere on the network.

“From classrooms to studios, teachers and students can now work together in real time to create a final product, no matter where they are, on any connected device,” says Meunier.  “This gives the students an invaluable understanding of the real-time workflows that increasingly connect media professionals, whether they’re working locally or remotely.”

 

Avid a reliable partner

With its team of Avid-trained and certified technicians fluent in French, CEV is ideally positioned to support the school’s technology needs. CEV also offers a wide range of high-level services covering sales, systems design, engineering, installation, training and maintenance.

With 24 years of experience as an «Avid elite reseller and integrator», CEV provides on-site and remote technical support for software-driven Avid systems tailored to the specific needs of each customer. CEV is also distinguished by its role as being the Official Avid Control Surface Repair Center for Canada.

Training future professionals of the industry

“Our goal is to teach our students to be professionals in their craft, with the skills to create expressive and engaging media and to get rewarding jobs in the communications fields,” says the Assistant Director of Studies of the CÉGEP Jonquière, Ms. Hélène Roberge. The majority of ATM graduates are getting jobs in the industry, including first rate positions at Canadian television stations.

“For the CÉGEP, this ensures the continuity of training and the sustainability of existing products, while providing a simple and effective transition both at the pedagogical level and the level of technical assistance to students and teachers. “, adds Gilles Gauthier, Project Manager at ATM integration of new technologies. “We chose Avid because their products are the industry standard, especially for broadcast newsroom workflows. We trust Avid to provide a complete environment that reliably integrates all aspects of our work, including remote access, storage and resource management. ”

In order to familiarize the students with state-of-the-art systems, the CÉGEP Jonquière has selected several key Avid products, including Avid NEXIS, iNEWS, Interplay and Airspeed, which are now integrated in all ATM pavilion facilities.

With Avid iNEWS, soon to be renamed MediaCentral | Newsroom Management – Future journalists and technicians learn to control every aspect of news and television news processing using a “story-centric” approach. They can create, view, and edit stories using the latest media content and content from many sources, including social media, and then broadcast their stories across multiple platforms. With iNEWS, journalists can work effectively from anywhere by simply using a mobile device or laptop.

An important part of the creative collaboration process involves searching for appropriate media clips and using them to expand more effective reporting. Avid Interplay has the power to make millions of clips easily accessible to media professionals, whether they work locally or remotely in a unified creative endeavor.

Hardware systems driven by Avid Airspeed and Avid NEXIS software are also essential for this high-performance processing environment, enabling real-time media acquisition and delivery as well as intelligent and configurable storage, providing bandwidth necessary for work in 4K / UHD. The CÉGEP students in Jonquière can work with these industry standard systems as part of their world-class training.

At the request of the CÉGEP de Jonquiere, Adobe Creative Cloud has also been integrated into the Avid Media Campus infrastructure. The entire upgrade took CEV close to one year, from the design and planning phases to installation and testing, while adhering to the college’s budget and approval process.

Brand image thanks to industry standards

The Cégep de Jonquière spokesperson Gilles Gauthier added: “With Avid Media Campus our students are well prepared for the Media Arts and Technology programs and the job market. When our graduates get their first job in the industry, we want them to be ready to go out and collaborate with other creators. With the help of CEV and Avid, we are able to train technicians, broadcasters and journalists to fully participate in production environments in the labor market.”

Avid NEXIS

Invest in your future with the reliability you need today, the scalability for tomorrow, and the technology to take you beyond. Take your storage to the next level with Avid NEXIS.

Pro Tools | S6

Choose a pre-configured S6 system or build your own. Speak with our experts to determine the best fit for your workflow and business.




Play Together — Avid MediaCentral | Editorial Management

Avid’s past, present and future has, is and always will be about helping creative people play together.  Even 27 years ago, when the original Avid1/Media Composer was released, it was all about collaboration.  Back then, the big technological breakthrough that took place was the ability to get 30 highly compressed frames playing from a hard disk in a single second.  So, the concept of an NLE being able to take a project from start to finish was not just financially impractical, but pretty much impossible from a technology standpoint.  In light of that, for a digital nonlinear editing system to revolutionize the industry, it had to function effectively as part of a bigger picture.  It had to have truly solid media management and interop capabilities.

Original concept sketch for Avid collaborative post. October 1987

Although professional editors often cite Media Composer’s timeline model and the ease with which they can manipulate a cut as to why they choose Avid, none of that would have mattered back in the 90’s if they couldn’t easily bring all their “offline” editing work forward into the other parts of the process; the color timing and correction, the sound mixing and editing, and finally the mastering and conforming.  Here we are in 2018 and all those things are still important.  For no better reason than that in professional post workflows you have highly skilled people who specialize in specific parts of the creative process.  Collaboration will always be the answer for getting work done faster and at the best possible quality.  Helping to make all that happen has always been Avid’s mission.

There are two key components to Media Composer’s leadership position in collaborative workflows.  The first would obviously be Avid’s shared storage.  When the original Avid Unity centralized storage product was introduced over 20 years ago, this was a huge leap forward in how post teams worked together. It was where collaboration changed from being about a fluid “linear” workflow, into a situation where creative teams were working in parallel and rapidly accelerating the post process.

The Amazing Race

It’s no coincidence that around the same time reality television production really took off.  Shows like Survivor and Amazing Race have enormous shooting ratios and extremely tight deadlines.  The only way to pull off something like that is to have a small army of editors, assistants and producers all working in parallel in an environment that is intuitive, responsive and very stable.  To this day, Avid’s intelligent shared storage products, from our original Unity systems (which are STILL actively in use throughout the world) to our new NEXIS line, form the backbone of thousands of production environments.

Despite all the focus on the storage itself, and the storage file system, it’s Avid’s bin model that was really the magic behind helping editors to collaborate effectively on the same project.  And that’s proven by how prominently Media Composer and NEXIS are deployed throughout professional post and broadcast.  In those environments, media and asset management are things that need to be completely reliable and not disruptive to the creative process.  Editors are able to work together without even having to really think about how they’re sharing clips and bins with assistants or other editors.

Avid NEXIS

Although Media Composer and NEXIS are the key parts to most professional post environments, NEXIS also fully supports Adobe Premiere, Final Cut Pro X, DaVinci Resolve, EDIUS, and of course our DAW, Pro Tools.  While none of those third-party solutions have the same level of bin sharing capabilities as Media Composer, you can easily have them be part of a hybrid workflow, as many people often do.  Supporting third-party solutions is obviously a good thing, because it gives the creative teams more flexibility on how they want to support different projects.  But, as I mentioned earlier, Avid’s true goal is to help teams get their best work done faster.  And that’s where the next revolution in post workflows comes in with our new MediaCentral | Editorial Management.

MediaCentral | Editorial Management

Technically you’d have to classify it as asset management, but it’s more like collaboration management, as it does some things that have never been possible before.  I mentioned that Avid’s bin model was a key part of how we made collaborative post easy and reliable.  But even that was limited to a world where you needed both a Media Composer system as well as someone trained to use it.  The game changing part of Editorial Management is the new HyperBin architecture.  Simply through an easy to use web UI called MediaCentral | Cloud UX, anyone can browse and search all of the media they have access to on NEXIS.  More importantly, the user can also create Media Composer bins and folders right from that same web UI.  So, an assistant could literally be moving dailies around and prepping bins for an editor from anywhere in the world, provided they can get to the network that the NEXIS is on.

Media management, something that most editors don’t want to spend too much time on, now gets distributed out so that it’s something the entire team can take part in.  And again, you don’t need Media Composer, or even someone trained on Media Composer to do it.  That said, Media Composer editors also get to enjoy some additional benefits as well. The same UI in the web browser also exists as a panel in Media Composer.  The beauty of that is that editors can now easily search for clips and bins across all their NEXIS workspaces, not just the active project that they have open.  This will really speed up the process of finding the exact right clips you need.  And, in keeping with the theme of openness, we’re also developing the same panel for Adobe Premiere.

Although I’m sure I can continue writing about MediaCentral | Editorial Management and the exciting prospects it brings, it’s much better if you take a look at it for yourself.  My friend Michael Krulik has put together a short demo for you so that you can see Editorial Management in action.  Check it out!

Creative Collaboration Made Simple

Add powerful, simple-to-deploy asset management capabilities to your file-based editing workflow with Avid MediaCentral | Editorial Management.




New Horizons for Fast Access to Archived Media — Introducing Avid NEXIS | E5 NL at NAB 2018

The growing demand for video content is accelerating production schedules across all platforms. From news and sports organizations to post-production groups, deadlines are growing shorter, increasing the need for streamlined workflows that can access archived video, quickly and reliably. As media producers create more assets, you need to find cost-effective ways to store and protect your valuable media, while still making it easily accessible for reuse. You can’t afford to have all your media taking up space in online high-performance storage systems.  You need a nearline storage solution that enables your team to move material quickly to and from online production storage.

We have great news! Avid just announced a new addition to the world-class Avid NEXIS family, designed to address these needs and more.

Introducing Avid NEXIS | E5 NL, a high-density nearline storage system that expedites access to archived media.  It provides a fast, intelligent solution for parking and retrieving assets and projects no longer in active production for repurposing and reuse, to maximize the value of your media.  It offers scalable, multilevel protected storage on-premises with integrated media management, making it easy to access, preview, and restore assets and projects, browse proxies of archived material, and stage upcoming projects and events quickly—all at an affordable price.

Avid NEXIS | E5 NL

Take control with a new Avid NEXIS Management Console UI

Avid is also introducing an updated Management Console for all Avid NEXIS shared storage that provides a responsive UI to support mobile and desktop devices—aligned with MediaCentral | Cloud UX—making systems monitoring, administration, and management easier.

This HTML5 User Interface offers a new Dashboard that provides an overview of your system’s performance, bandwidth, and status, as well as access to configure and manage workspaces, storage groups, user access, notifications, and other functions quickly.

From accelerating archive-to-online workflows (and vice-versa) and providing workspaces for staging, to delivering to multiple storage tiers when integrated with MediaCentral for public and private cloud workflows, Avid NEXIS | E5 NL gives you everything you need to maximize and protect the value of your media.

New Avid NEXIS Management Console Dashboard

Streamline your media production workflow

Forget having to wait while pulling media from tape. Avid NEXIS | E5 NL gives broadcast teams faster access to archived media, enabling you to quickly browse, search and shot-select proxies of the high-resolution assets on tape. This eliminates the need to restore large amounts of high-res material just to search for the ideal clip as the news cycle changes. Put together a rough-cut sequence using the proxy instantly available on Avid NEXIS | E5 NL and kick off a selected, faster restore from tape of only the required clips. In a pinch, you can go to air with the proxy if all the high-res assets are not restored. This enables you to get on air first with the best story possible.

Post production teams often struggle with multiple competing projects that may get put on hold. Or you may need a shared staging area for upcoming events and a library of common assets. Avid NEXIS | E5 NL is the ideal tier 2 storage that enables you to fully utilize your high-performance tier 1 Avid NEXIS | E2, E4, E5 production storage for currently active projects. Avid NEXIS | E5 NL is high density, protected storage that enables you to move media from online to nearline quickly if a project goes on hold, or when you are awaiting final approval. Also Avid NEXIS | E5 NL is ideal for event staging when you need to pull media from a tape archive to prepare. You can avoid cluttering your online storage while the slow restore from tape is progressing. You can collect all of the media in the Avid NEXIS | E5 NL nearline tier, and when ready, quickly move it to your Avid NEXIS online storage for production.

Avid NEXIS | E5 NL is the perfect cost-effective companion to any Avid NEXIS and MediaCentral environment, streamlining the workflow between active and non-active production.  Avid NEXIS I E5 NL integrates with MediaCentral to take advantage of the platform’s media management capabilities. This includes MediaCentral | Shared Library, which provides a powerful, flexible archiving solution for all types of assets. Get instant browse access to proxy archive and parked projects, which can be restored to Avid NEXIS | E5, E4, or E2 for active production, then parked back to Avid NEXIS | E5 NL when finished.

Avid NEXIS | E5 NL is the only nearline storage solution that offers tight integration with MediaCentral and its workflows to streamline production. And because its built on the same robust, industry-proven architecture and file system as Avid NEXIS online storage, you have the reliable media protection and redundancy you need to prevent your nearline from going offline.

120 TB Media Packs for Avid NEXIS | E5 NL

Scale your system as you go

As your business and project needs grow, Avid NEXIS | E5 NL is right there with you. Avid NEXIS | FS—the common scale-out file system across all Avid NEXIS storage engines—makes it easy to add storage capacity. Scale from 480 TB of storage to more than 7.5 PB by connecting multiple E5 NL engines together as a single nearline system. Plus, each engine delivers 1 GB/s of throughput, enabling fast media transfer.

In addition, this highly intelligent, unique file system enables you to flexibly adapt capacity, bandwidth, drive protection levels, and user read/write permissions to meet changing production and security needs. You can use E5 NL as dedicated nearline storage or integrate it with other Avid NEXIS | E5, E4, and/or E2 engines to facilitate media transfer to multiple storage tiers.

 

To see how Avid NEXIS | E5 NL can cost-effectively improve and accelerate your media production workflow, come and see our demonstration at Upper South Hall – Booth SU801 (located next to the hall entrance).

Avid NEXIS | E5 NL

Get access to your archived media instantly. Avid NEXIS | E5 NL is a high-density, disk-based nearline storage system that provides a fast, intelligent solution for parking and retrieving assets and projects no longer in active production.




Media Security in a Digital Age

When you look at the productivity gains that we’ve seen over the last decades, it’s hard to imagine a life today without our electronics. But there’s also a lot of vulnerability around digitalization. The word “privacy” takes on a new meaning when files are digital, and I often wonder if “privacy” is a concept that is available only to those thoughts that are held internally and outside the digital world.

My company, Fortress Risk Management, is at the very center of the digital world. We exist to protect financial institutions against transactional crime. When we analyze who the ultimate victim of financial crimes is, it is society in general, which includes not only financial institutions, but also government entities, businesses and consumers. Vulnerability continues to increase as every data point become available online. Customers demand ubiquitous connections to their accounts, and these connections create vulnerability that the fraudsters exploit. The more we digitize, the more vulnerable we become.

When you look at the history of crime, what jumps out at you is the scalability of crime inherent in digitalization. In the 1700s, a criminal would hide in the alley and hold a knife or gun up to a victim and steal their money. This type of crime was not scalable — you could only rob so many people each day. In the 1800s, the same criminals found it easier to jump on the train and rob those passages sitting in a car of a train.

Now, without leaving your home, you can steal millions of credit cards, with very low risk.  For instance, in the Target breach, there were over 110 million cards stolen — that represents a quantum leap in crime productivity. And these criminals are not targeting any one particular institution or person; they are attacking everyone and anyone.

When we look at the statistics, in 2015, about 80% of all financial institutions in the United States admitted to being a victim of credit or debit card fraud; 76% have had check forgery; 50% have been a victim of phishing fraud; 43% have been victimized by account takeover, which normally reveals itself as ACH or wire fraud; and 35% has had POS and ATM skimming. This only takes into account the actual events that were caught, which obviously do not include the transactions that were never spotted. There are other surveys that show much higher levels of suggested fraud. Keep in mind that financial institutions do not want their customers to know that they have been victimized. So, many institutions hide fraud as much as possible, as there is a stigma to being the victim of fraud.

You may ask: How large is fraud within financial institutions? The American Bankers Association estimates that annually, deposit account fraud, not taking into consideration card fraud nor credit unions, represents $1.9 billion in losses. LEXIS-NEXIS estimates there is $10.9 billion in card fraud, and of that, $2.7 billion lost on debit cards. And on top of that, check fraud accounts for $600 million in losses. And remember, these are annual figures. These numbers continue to grow and grow.

When we consider solutions, we could eliminate almost all fraud by simply creating verifications back to the account holder for every transaction. But when a financial institution thinks about asking their customers to spend time monitoring their accounts, this is very unappealing for the end-user customer. The customer considers that this is a financial institution’s problem and not their own, so it is difficult to get customers to become allies in defense. Sending alerts to customers, if done occasionally, is tolerated. If it is excessive, the customers will ignore the alerts or move accounts. The financial institutions have to come up with defensible strategies. At Fortress Risk Management, we have an extensive arsenal of machine learning algorithmic models that try to predict fraud in advance and in real time. We are throwing the best data scientist at this problem and having great success. But these fraudsters keep us on our toes.

As our lives are converted from analog to digital, there is a lot of great productivity behind the conversion.  But the conversion is not without risk, and the vulnerability is huge. One thing we know is that we aren’t going back to analog, so we need to figure out quickly how to protect ourselves and our assets in a digital world.




Students Learn Real-World Tech Skills and How to Manage Media with Avid NEXIS

Increasingly today’s high schools and universities are recognizing the value of technical literacy and the importance of teaching students how to access and manage information and media in the digital age. Avid is an active partner in this endeavor. Teaming with educational institutions at both the high school and collegiate level, we’re helping make our tools/solutions available to students around the country.

Avid’s shared storage domain offers the ideal way for students to learn valuable media management skills in a real-world environment. Schools nationwide have been using ISIS storage systems that enable up to 40 students to connect, collaborate and simultaneously access the same high-res media in real time.

Now a growing number of schools are acquiring Avid NEXIS, the world’s first software-defined storage platform that enables true storage virtualization for any media application. The system builds on the power and performance of ISIS, offering even more capacity, unrivalled performance, scalability, and reliability. And now it provides greater bandwidth to accelerate 4K/UHD and finishing workflows, plus new support for Pro Tools collaboration.

The power of one

One group of schools in Southern California was the fortunate recipient of Avid NEXIS systems, due in no small part to the passion and unrelenting dedication of teacher Matt Stroup. Matt spends most of his days teaching video production and technology literacy at Clark Magnet High School in La Crescenta, California, where a total of 540 students rotate through his classes each year. He also advises on all matters media and technology throughout the Glendale Unified School District. But that’s only part of the story. To understand what Matt and Avid bring to the students, it helps to understand how schools came to have Avid NEXIS solutions in their media labs.

 

A vision realized

Matt has roots as a working professional in the industry. So he’s experienced with a range of media production tools and knew that he wanted to expose students to a network-based shared storage workflow. “When I step back and look at the world – professional work is being done over some type of digital network,” he says. Part of his goal was to demystify how cloud-based platforms function. ”The cloud is not a magical unicorn floating out in space somewhere,” he says. “It’s hardware networked together – a great big Wiki world.”

From his work in the entertainment industry and with competitive products, he also knew he wanted Avid for his school. At the time, in 2009/2010, there was no funding to make this goal a reality. But Matt lobbied the media department at Clark Magnet High School while he also looked outside the school for like-minded supporters and potential partners. He found them in another six schools and colleges in the Glendale area. With a bond from his school plus a six-million-dollar grant from the state of California spread across the consortium of schools, he got his wish with new computers and multiple Avid NEXIS systems up and running.

Giving projects life

Matt’s students put Avid NEXIS through its paces to varying degrees – moving from simple for his technical literacy classes to extremely complex in his advanced production classes, where the software functions just as it might for a professional studio or film production. The platform is used to help create everything from PSAs for the city to short one-camera narratives to complex, multi-camera films.

He describes his advanced video production capstone class project with excitement, explaining that this year’s film, which may be shot on location at Fort Tejon, explores relevant themes like racism through the story of a civil war fort. Their film experience involves finding locations and actors, raising money, developing the script, shooting, production and post – the same as any feature. Students have developed their own specialties and all have defined roles.

 

Beyond the classroom

Matt’s goal is to prepare students to be successful out in the world, whether or not they pursue careers in media and entertainment. “Students can transfer these skills out in the world. It gives them more power – the ability to get more done in the environment we live in today. Knowing how to work over a network, collaborate as a team, and know how things are stored and how to access them are all extremely valuable skills.”

Clark Magnet High School is also part of the Avid Learning Partner Program so students receive training and certification. Those serious about film and video production have a huge advantage right out of the gate and secure internships directly out of school. Some students move straight into the workforce as competent filmmakers where, as Matt says, “clouds are the limit.” Others contribute in computer support roles. Their technical proficiency has them well prepared for the work world and is highly attractive to employers.

Avid NEXIS scores in-stadium

Avid NEXIS is also impacting educational life outside the classroom – literally. Earlier this year, Colorado State University Athletics debuted its new on-campus football stadium, which includes a massive 4,200-square foot video board and 1,290 feet of ribbon board around the stadium. These boards bring action on the field to life in a new way, displaying rich content like in-game stats, sponsor ads and league scores. The new control room housed in nearby Moby Arena is connected to the stadium via fiber optic cabling, bringing video graphics to volleyball, basketball and football games. To facilitate collaboration between the two sites, RamVision, Colorado State’s video production department, selected three Avid NEXIS | PRO software-defined storage systems.

Designed for small video and audio production teams, Avid NEXIS | PRO offers Avid NEXIS performance and reliability in a smaller and more affordable package. As with in-class use, Avid the shared storage platform helps students flex their creative muscles in new ways and enhance educational experiences. “We’re ecstatic about the new capabilities Avid NEXIS will bring to the table for us,” says Benjamin Brune, Director of RamVision at Colorado State University. “Avid NEXIS will allow us to work collaboratively and securely across different locations, while focusing our time on being creative. At the same, we’ll be able to train our students on professional solutions they’ll work with beyond graduation.”

A look at the High Schools, Colleges and Universities who installed Avid NEXIS in 2017

At a time when some schools struggle to provide even the most basic educational tools and programs, it’s inspiring to see the passion of educators result in technology and programs that not only enhance classroom experiences but also impact students for the rest of their lives. Avid is proud to be part of this commitment.

Learn how Avid for Education helps bring advanced production tools to schools and impacts students’ lives.

Avid NEXIS

Invest in your future with the reliability you need today, the scalability for tomorrow, and the technology to take you beyond. Take your storage to the next level with Avid NEXIS.