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In our first feature of What’s Happening at IBC, we’re spotlighting a European customer, BBC Northern Ireland (BBC NI), and a technology partner, Cinegy, to find out how this national public broadcaster solved its production challenges with a proven Quantum and Cinegy solution.

Who is BBC Northern Ireland?

BBC NI is a national division of the BBC and the primary public broadcaster in Northern Ireland, providing news, sports, current affairs content, dramatic series, and cultural programming. It distributes original material and programs developed by other national BBC channels over two television channels, two radio stations, and a broad range of new media platforms. In addition, its facilities serve as a central digital archive for the Rewind Projects, hosting thousands of hours of existing content from all of BBC’s different national sites—storing, protecting, and making the content available for reuse by the public and the entire BBC archive community.

What Were BBC NI’s Top Challenges?

BBC NI began transitioning to an all-digital capture and media asset management (MAM) system a couple of years ago, with its overall goal being to improve workflow efficiency, ensure signal availability, and control costs. As new technologies were added to the operation, the growing volume of content and proliferation of recording formats began to put stress on older components in the workflow, calling for the need to expediently and cost-efficiently update the organization’s existing Quantum StorNext® storage infrastructure.

BBC NI’s top requirements were:

  • More seats with collaborative access
  • Higher overall performance
  • An easier way to scale the system

How Did BBC NI Solve Its Challenges With Cinegy and Quantum?

Recommended by trusted partners—Siemens Business Systems, Quantum, and Cinegy—the solution was to overhaul the entire workflow system, upgrading applications and the network as well as the storage systems. An existing StorNext environment was dramatically expanded to include two Fibre Channel–connected locations, and the MAM was upgraded to the latest Cinegy software.

Challenge: More seats with collaborative access

Solution: “It (the new system) provides much more flexibility. Now we have 200 seats with high-performance access to all shared content through the StorNext File System—so that more editors can work faster and more collaboratively, and spend less time moving themselves or content around.”

– Roland Rogers, technology development and infrastructure specialist, BBC NI

Challenge: Higher overall performance

Solution: “The new system has much faster performance overall.”

– Roland Rogers, technology development and infrastructure specialist, BBC NI

Active work is split up between two locations, both with performance disk resources and a StorNext AEL6000 tape library acting as an archive to hold existing content and protect work in progress, providing maximum performance and backups. Editors normally work from proxy files stored on disk, and when the full-resolution versions are created, Cinegy pulls the full-quality versions from disk or tape, depending on their location.

Challenge: An easier way to scale BBC NI’s system

Solution: “Over the years, we moved from a minimum-sized implementation…to a fully redundant, highly resilient, dual-site implementation without significant downtime or disruption to our users. This capability is a strength of StorNext, and the way that it and Cinegy work together.”

– Roland Rogers, technology development and infrastructure specialist, BBC NI

Stop By and Say Hello at IBC

To learn more about BBC NI, read the full case study or watch the webinar. And if you’ll be attending IBC2017, stop by the Quantum and Cinegy booths to learn more about how you can solve your top workflow challenges with a proven joint solution.

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