Remote Picture Labs

The Promise of Hybrid Remote/On-Prem Editing Workflows

May 18, 2021

By Keith Gore, co-founder, Remote Picture Labs

It’s been more than 400 days since COVID-19 shut down most film and television production in Hollywood. Now, as we get back to normal (whatever “normal” means in the world of post-production), it’s a good time to ask if traditional editing workflows wouldn’t be better served by a new approach.

You may be thinking, if it isn’t broke, why bother? The answer is simple: Working through the pandemic has taught us a few things, one of them being that editing scripted or live television shows remotely can be done without compromising on performance or creativity – and offers a number of benefits when compared to traditional on-prem workflows.

Of course, some producers thrive on the face-to-face collaboration you can only get when your team is together in the office. One of the great things about remote editing is that you don’t have to give up that dynamic. In fact, a hybrid workflow combining both remote and on-prem infrastructure delivers the best of all worlds.

I couldn’t have made this claim a few years ago, but remote editing has come a long way in just the last few months. Bandwidth is no longer an issue, even for transporting 4K/UHD and HDR video. Our high-performance Remote Picture Labs private cloud, hosted in a tier-1 data center, provides gigabit speed and high content availability. It’s highly flexible, letting us create fully customized solutions for your team, something that may not be possible with services hosted over a public cloud. The comfort level you get from using your preferred post-production tools, including Avid Media Composer and Adobe Creative Cloud, can’t be underestimated. An added benefit is that our private cloud allows us to provide you with fixed costs for systems and storage, a huge help when it comes to budgeting.

The RPL solution utilizes Avid NEXIS storage servers and Nvidia GPU-powered virtualized workstations. Teradici Cloud Access Software and PCoIP Ultra™ technology is employed to compress, encrypt, and transmit data to stateless zero clients at each workstation. No media is ever actually downloaded to the workstations, only pixels, which helps assure consistent high performance and security. Teradici’s PCoIP® protocol is secured by AES-256 encryption and adapts dynamically to network conditions in real time, providing the highest possible level of content protection.

To further ease your transition to a remote workflow, RPL will coordinate the seamless transfer of your dailies and supply you with a Virtual Dailies Download Machine at no charge. If you choose to ingest content from the set directly to post, you can cut days and weeks off the post-production schedule, saving even more time and money. Many of our clients use Evercast for remote viewing and real-time spotting sessions, a system that also provides video chat capabilities.

Our virtual workstations feel and perform like a traditional edit suite, but there are certainly times when having your editorial team sitting next to you is indispensable. That’s where a hybrid remote/on-prem system really shines. Ours gives your team the ability to login for viewings or fixes from either the home or office – a level of flexibility that can deliver significant time savings and improve editor productivity.

That’s not all. Our hybrid editing solution will save you money on the cost of renting editing facilities, as well as reduce – or even eliminate – expenditures on powering and cooling on-prem servers. As well, because your team members can work from virtually anywhere, you’re no longer limited to the traditional East or West Coast talent pools.

Since March 2020 RPL has onboarded hundreds of editors, assistant editors and producers across the country. The day is coming soon for all of us to get back to work. A hybrid RPL solution lets your editorial team get up and running immediately. I’m confident that it will meet all of your requirements for performance and creative collaboration – while simultaneously saving you time and money. Trusting us with your project just might be one of the best decisions you can make as you ramp back up and prepare for next season.

Remote Picture Labs