| ||Post & network production facilities |
|Submitted by |
| ||Editshare/West Virginia University |
|Design Team |
| ||West Virginia University: Fred Marstiller, mgr. of communications eng. |
EditShare: Andy Liebman, pres. & founder
Channel Wolves: Grant Carroll, chief tech. officer
|Technology at work |
| ||Adobe |
EditShare storage system
HP ProCurve switch
NewTek LightWave 3D
Sony Betacam SP
The Television Production Department at West Virginia University (WVU) is a busy operation, turning out more than 50 “Mountaineer Magazine” and “Mountaineer Jammin” programs per year for the Mountaineer Network, which is syndicated and carried by several TV stations in the region. These and a full schedule of live Mountaineer Network game coverage of football, basketball and other sports and campus activities keep the WVU team at full tilt. WVU needed to streamline the operation and move toward an integrated, file-based workflow that offers straight forward media sharing to keep up with demand.
Each of the edit suites were standalone units, and valuable time was wasted digitizing tapes and waiting for materials. That changed when WVU installed an EditShare system with 36TB of storage. The NAS solution is optimized for post-production workflows, offering software tools such as Avid project sharing that maximize collaboration for multiuser environments.
WVU’s system is composed of two EditShare servers connected via 10GigE to a HP ProCurve switch. Each server chassis is loaded with 24 750GB drives with room to grow. The drives are configured in RAID5, providing optimal redundancy without sacrificing a large amount of storage. From the HP switch, each of the production suites and workstations is connected to one of the 96 available 1Gb. The engineering department also has access to the EditShare storage and production material, and everyone has access to Internet, e-mail and office services for a streamlined work environment.
The old WVU workflow was frustrating. Footage had to be digitized multiple times into the different edit suites before editors could work on their individual projects. Now, the material is digitized once and it’s accessible on the EditShare to everyone. Production of this year’s WVU basketball special DVD highlighted the improvement. For each sport, WVU cuts an annual highlight DVD. In the past, a whole season’s worth of footage had to be digitized before even starting editing the project. This year, the entire season was all already available to editors thanks to EditShare. They were able to start the creative process immediately, cutting production time by half, and the product was measurably better.
EditShare’s straightforward operation and the added built-in protections make it easy to use. It’s impossible to accidentally overwrite or delete files with EditShare. WVU has allocated shared spaces on the EditShare to include audio, graphics and animations to allow others to see and preview different aspects of works in progress. Another big improvement from the EditShare installation was the ability for WVU to extend editing capability to include desktop systems. In addition to the original five Avid suites, the EditShare also connects 15 additional Adobe and Avid desktop editing systems, conveniently located in the producers’ offices.