The largest fibre and Ethernet video SAN network in the world


Out of the Ashes of the old Anglian TV studios EPIC has risen like a phoenix to become not only a major broadcasting hub in Norfolk but to rival traditional studios throughout Europe. With the financial backing of Norfolk County Council and the East of England development agency, EPIC has converted the old TV studios and installed a state of the art HD workflow solution to enable resident clients, visiting production companies and local universities to work with the very latest broadcast equipment in custom designed studios.
Epic really is the future, they provide space and resources for the companies of today and perhaps more importantly teaching the students of tomorrow. The centre is a hub for both commercial and educational users which is a first for the industry, commissioning editors in business suits rub shoulders with the spikey hair tattooed creatives which provides a wonderful pool of talent to not only draw from but to offer inspiration to others.
Mark Wells the centre Director had a vision of a state of the art facility that offered full HD capability from ingest to output. He wanted a SAN (Storage Are Network) solution that would allow a huge volume of storage to be available without any detriment to speed to between sixty and seventy edit suites. The full plan was to integrate the San with the three studios for live capture of SD and HD as well as allowing full post facilities. He took his wish list and visited IBC in Amsterdam and Video Forum in London. Almost without exception Mark was greeted with the same response from solutions providers and manufacturers which was yes it can be done but we have yet to see it work !
Obviously the manufacturers did not have a shrink wrapped solution so Mark approached the niche solutions experts and was dismayed to find either a lack of knowledge on the subject or if they had the knowledge and lack of experience in actually setting up a system of this magnitude. "It seemed" said Mark "that everyone can put together a Final Cut Pro suite but nobody seemed interested in understanding our wider objectives”.
Mark then happened upon the Video Rescue stand and was immediately put at ease by Dominic Harland (Managing Director of Video Rescue)and Ben Pearce (Technical Director), Mark told me that "They took time to listen to what we wanted, they took notes and then offered a few suggestions and improvements that we had not considered, also they talked me through various other installations that Video Rescue had been commissioned to do and gave me the contact details of the customer so I could check it out for myself; it just seemed that other suppliers wanted to sell me boxes only Video Rescue seemed to get a grip on the wider picture”
Satisfied that Video Rescue were the company for the job the next stage was to get the technical team down to Norwich for a full site survey. The building had suffered from neglect and was in the throws of being refitted, contractors were on site and walls and floors ripped out. Mark Wells and his team took Ben and Dominic on a tour of the facility and showed them the plans, whilst in hi vis jackets and protective hard hats the final specs were finely tuned and agreed. With the order placed, Video Rescue liaised with Mark and the building contractors to commence installation, the time scale and budgets were set with an end time of the beginning of September to coincide with the new term for the University.
Bearing in mind the scale of the installation there were a few teething troubles but as Mark told me "Video Rescue encountered a few problems with various hardware and software configurations but instead of burying there heads they worked night and day testing various options until they had created a highly stable SAN solution allowing both fibre and ethernet connections with incredible sustained data rates" As the deadline approached the installation was completed so when the first student walked through the door the entire solution was installed, tested and ready for action.
"Not only did Video Rescue specify, supply and install the system but they offer a complete maintenance package that includes telephone and on site support as well as remote desktop problem solving. I would not hesitate to recommend Video Rescue as a solutions company, they have a strong team who have been in the industry a long and most importantly they get the job done, within time and on budget"
EPICs needs and expectations were vast but working with manufacturers both hardware and software allied with our in house expertise we created the largest fibre and Ethernet video SAN network in the world. Any facility that uses two or more edit suites should be considering the benefits and cost effectiveness of a managed SAN network.

Tags: Video Rescue | norfolk county council | epic | tv studio | hd workflow | iss023 | san | fibre | ethernet | N/A
Contributing Author N/A

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