Fiber is Good for You


There’s been a lot of changes over the past few months in the technologies supporting NUAMPS video production and post-production.  Stefani has posted previously about our switch to a tapeless camera, the Panasonic HVX200.  However, this is only half of the equation.  These cameras produce footage at a rate of approximately 1GB/minute.  And since our existing editing facilities were only designed to support approximately 216MB/minute, we clearly needed an upgrade.  Additionally, we had no real way to share work on large projects without long, laborious data transfers between editing machines.

Enter XSAN.  We purchased an Apple Xserve and two Promise VTrak RAID enclosures.  These enclosures house 32 750GB drives, giving us approximately 13TB of space for the editing of HD video.  These enclosures are controlled by Apple’s XSAN filesystem, providing the quickest and most efficient access to our source footage.  Finally, everything (including our five editing stations) is interconnected over 4Gbps fiber, providing a connection speed even faster than the internal drives of the stations themselves.

End result: enough space to edit even the largest of projects, with the ability to share projects immediately.

This technology has allowed us to shoot, edit, and deliver approximately 30 hours of video over a two week period – a task that would have been downright impossible using our previous systems.  Stefani will have more on this specific project.  Until then…make sure you get your fiber.