September 23, 2015
How Avid & TM Television Cut Project Delivery Time and Created Peace of Mind
For the past 15 years, Post Production Systems Specialist Craig Wright has been with Dallas County Community College District (DCCCD). From 2003-2004 the video production department had TM Television install an Avid editing system with 12 terabytes of storage. Then about a decade later, Wright’s department embarked upon an extensive upgrade project.
He approached the project as an opportunity to tackle a pesky and ongoing challenge that burdens most media professionals at one time or another — too much footage, not enough storage.
Tasked with producing multiple series of 26 half-hour documentary programs, the department often shared B-roll footage among four editors. “We had a lot of work going on and a lot of collaboration around shared footage,” explained Wright, who said that the media department needed to centralize the sharing of all that B-roll footage.
Because DCCCD had trusted Avid and TM Television for years to provide reliable and powerful workflow management, Wright and his team once again turned to TM Television and Avid to find the solutions they knew might be answers for their storage dilemma.
Wright said he began going to all the TM Television events to learn more about his options. “That enabled me to download the company’s “intel” and to understand what was coming and what would be available,” explained Wright. “They’ve been one of my primary sources in this local area for information and technology resources, whether that’s cameras, build-outs or in upgrading our studio to HD. Likewise, they have been integral in helping me connect with other vendors and peers in Dallas that share their experience on the storage challenge.” Wright said, “TM Television is our connector into the industry to get the answers we need.”
“TM Television is our connector into the industry to get the answers we need.”
In evaluating the DCCCD problems, TM Television dug beyond the storage dilemma and discovered that the department also needed to retain their media assets for longer periods of time.
Fulfilling that ongoing need required the purchase of storage on a regular basis. TM Television Regional Sales Manager, Bob Roose explained, “We designed a solution that included an archive system that could safely store programs for years, while allowing their disk based storage to be used to edit the work in progress.”
The design allowed for a seamless workflow that would enhance their collaborative efforts. Using hierarchical storage management, which included an LTO based archive system, helped DCCCD achieve their archive goals.
Prior to the Avid upgrade, DCCCD had a 12 terabyte system, but after the upgrade to the Avid central management system, DCCCD has increased the media storage system eight fold, providing all the storage they need with a total of 96 terabytes.
Due to the upgrade, the team no longer needs to perform stop gap measures for storage, which used to include regularly going in and deleting footage, Wright explained, “With the extra storage space, we don’t have to micromanage the space any longer.”
Essentially, his team no longer needs to negotiate with other media departments to get things deleted. “I can go back to the master and create from it,” he said.
In the past, Wright said he would often be asked to go in and get all 26 episodes of a production, output it in a new format, and have it ready by the end of the week. In reality, that request often required a tedious one to two month process; however, now it can be done in a week.
Roose explained that DCCCD had been confronted with client requirements that exceeded the capacity of their ability to transcode. “They demanded their jobs be completed in days, but with the manual processes, it took weeks,” said Roose, who explained that the solutions not only speed up the transcoding, but also add automation. “Jobs can be completed when requested by clients, and workflows are now automated, which frees up personnel for other more productive tasks.”
Wright is pleased with the upgrades and additions. “I can now fulfill disaster requirements that are being pushed out across the educational culture,” Wright continued, “Our supervisors need to know that we aren’t going to lose all of these valuable assets and now we have peace of mind that we won’t.”
“Our supervisors need to know that we aren’t going to lose all of these valuable assets and now we have peace of mind that we won’t.”
As one of the largest community college systems in the state, Dallas County Community College District includes seven independently accredited colleges: Brookhaven, Cedar Valley, Eastfield, El Centro, Mountain View, North Lake and Richland. The colleges of DCCCD equip students for successful living and responsible citizenship. Since 1965, the college has served more than 1.5 million people and also provides economic benefits to business, taxpayers, and the community. For more information, visit www.dcccd.edu
About TM Television
TM Television is a leading supplier of digital video, audio and workflow products to the broadcast, production, post-production and corporate industries. Offering the most advanced hardware and software products from leading manufacturers in the industry, TM Television provides seamlessly integrated workflow solutions, ongoing service, and expert guidance for all media production needs.