Avid Everywhere At Sundance And Pie Town

Last month in this space, we covered engineer choices in project sharing for audio production, reporting that many engineers opt for free services such as Dropbox and others for digital collaboration and distribution.
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Avid ISIS 5500 shared storage solution with monitor. Last month in this space, we covered engineer choices in project sharing for audio production, reporting that many engineers opt for free services such as Dropbox and others for digital collaboration and distribution. As our industry is overwhelmingly Pro Tools-oriented, Avid has touted its Avid Everywhere creative ecosystem over the past year as an efficient, focused, content-creation environment versus less audio production-specific options.

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According to Avid, the Everywhere “vision” is a concept “of the most fluid end-to-end, distributed media production environment in the industry.” Its core is Avid MediaCentral from which audio professionals can produce, manage, deliver and even create income streams. It’s an ambitious setting that a range of end-users is already adopting.

From the entry-level end, Avid is now offering Pro Tools | Duet and Pro Tools | Quartet bundles that come with either a one-year subscription or perpetual license to Pro Tools, along with several groupings of content solutions. These include Artist Suite (including Pro Tools), Media Suite (a media management, distribution and monetization bundle), and Storage Suite (featuring Avid ISIS online and nearline shared storage, AirSpeed ingest/play-out server and FastBreak broadcast automation), as well as Marketplaces and Global Services features. Customers receive their choice of two Avid plug-ins, including one Tier 2 ($299 value) and one Tier 3 premium plug-in ($499 value).

An example of Avid Everywhere at work can be found in North Hollywood, CA-based television production company Pie Town Productions’ adoption of the technology. The studio juggles large volumes of deliverables and content as it strives to meet the deadlines and budgets of 10 reality television series a year, knocking out more than 400 episodes annually. Known for reality TV productions like House Hunters, House Hunters Renovation, Tiny House Hunters, Joan & Melissa: Joan Knows Best, Flip or Flop, and Say It To My Face, Pie Town also has to ensure that all its highly technical network deliverables that are completed additionally meet iTunes and Video On Demand (VOD) requirements.

The result was that, faced with so many production deadlines, high-volume workflows and an ever-broadening variety of content formats that had to be addressed and catered to, Pie Town needed a non-linear editing solution that could handle all of that. Ultimately, the company opted to facilitate its project sharing needs via Avid ISIS.

Dana Besnoy, vice president of Post Production for Pie Town, has found Avid ISIS integrates well with third-party systems, so that staying in the Avid ecosystem hasn’t limited the company: “We now use Avid products from ingest to output and the entire post process happens internally, without going to outside facilities, which helps us save time and money. Our switch to Avid has also allowed us to expand our workforce as needed. As Avid is the industry standard for media editing, our switch to the Avid MediaCentral Platform has enabled us to significantly broaden the talent pool and find a wide array of professionals who can immediately jump in on any project.”

Meanwhile, the Sundance Institute Feature Film Program’s Director’s Lab in Utah has adopted Avid Everywhere as a teaching tool in which fledgling filmmakers use creative applications and shared storage solutions while learning their craft; the month-long lab is powered by Avid’s MediaCentral platform. For 2015, the Lab is using Media Composer from the Artist Suite and Avid ISIS 5500 shared storage solution (pictured) from the Storage Suite. Together, the next generation of filmmakers are learning collaborate in a truly “connected” environment. “We’re very grateful for Avid’s continued support, which gives these singular filmmakers an invaluable opportunity to use the professional editing tools and workflows that the most accomplished film editors use,” commented Michelle Satter, founding director of the program.