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Rapid Blue Deploys EFS 300 Storage System From EditShare

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Rapid Blue is now using the EFS 300 storage system from EditShare for all its in-house shows.

Through the use of EditShare FLOW media management and workflow tools, the company has built a very efficient and cost-effective platform which allows multiple users direct access for review and approval, as well as supporting large post production teams. Rapid Blue’s productions encompass a diverse array of content, spanning from drama serials such as Is’thunzi to studio shows like Family Feud South Africa and Last One Laughing South Africa, as well as location-based reality programs including The Bachelor and Come Dine With Me South Africa. Rapid Blue, who is part of BBC Studios’ international family of production companies, is also the South African producer of international hits such as The Great South African Bake Off and Dancing with the Stars. The result is large volumes of content acquisition, often needing very rapid turnaround times.

When its central storage system reached end of life and began to raise serious issues with reliability, Rapid Blue looked for a system that would deliver content security as the top priority. Workflows needed to be fast, intuitive and cost effective. The EFS platform answered all the questions, and the company installed a 280TB storage network, implementing the system in conjunction with Protea Broadcast & Multimedia, EditShare’s South African partner.

"The whole facility runs off it, and it’s been awesome," said Jacques Wolfaardt, Rapid Blue Head of IT. "It hosts almost all of our productions, and we can connect all our edit suites – as many as 20 – at the same time on the same content, giving us great productivity and fast turnarounds."

Rapid Blue uses both Adobe Premiere Pro and DaVinci Resolve non-linear editors, and both are tightly integrated into the EditShare FLOW media management functionality. The relevant parts of the shared storage appear as locations within the software, so editors get direct access to the material they need, and can save cuts directly to the storage network.

"We connect many desktops directly to FLOW, and it automatically generates high-quality proxies," Wolfaardt said. "Producers working on their own computers can select the content they need from bulk ingests before it gets to editors – and reality shows generate a massive amount of content. They can also review and approve cuts, all without tying up edit suites just to look at material. That saves us time and resources, and makes us much more efficient.

"We also use the workflow automation in FLOW,” he continued. “It creates all the deliverables in different formats, and delivers them to FTP sites, without tying up staff or facilities."

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