Creative production

Why does the video content team have different storage requirements?

Types of storage

There are three main categories of storage defined by the immediacy you need to access the data on them.

  • Active storage is where you keep the files you need to access immediately. You work with those files daily, and you need to open them in various software applications. 

  • Backup storage – this is where you keep a copy of the files you use daily in case your active storage solution fails and you need to restore your data quickly and continue working.

  • Archival storage – you keep files you used in the past but don’t intend to use in the near future.

Here we will talk about active storage since video content teams’ backup, and archival storage needs could easily fit the rest of the storage infrastructure.  

File properties and storage requirements

The elephant in the room 

(pun intended)

File SIZE

Depending on your video team’s content, the footage of a single project may require more storage capacity than everyone else at the company uses for a year. Individual video files can be large, and to create an engaging video, the creative team will need to film many of them. 

There are several benefits to shooting video in higher quality than what ends up as the final result. Higher-resolution raw footage will give the video editors more flexibility when using the clip to change the composition and avoid something that shouldn’t be in the frame or bring more diversity into the scene. 

But more importantly, it is very likely that this specific footage will be challenging to recreate. Filming in higher resolution and lower compression would guarantee that the footage has more longevity and could be reused on future projects, even if the following project requires a higher resolution. 

That means, however, that each file could be a few gigabytes or even a few dozen gigabytes large. 

Performance

If you aren’t familiar with the video editing process, one thing that would be helpful to understand is the real-time playback of the footage is required to complete a project.

A few main characteristics of a video file will determine what performance is needed from the storage to ensure smooth playback.

  • Resolution – the dimensions of the frame in pixels

  • Frame rate – the number of frames per second of video

  • Video codec – the compression ratio

  • Bitrate – how much data is transmitted per second 

  • Bit depth – how much color is saved

Without going into unnecessary detail about each of those terms, it should be clear that there is quite a bit of complexity in video files compared to documents, images, and audio files. 

There are, of course, performance requirements for the workstation that is used for editing but assuming you have one that can play back anything, here are the main things to look for when it comes to the performance capabilities of your storage.

  • Bandwidth will determine if the storage can get the necessary amount of data to the application fast enough.

  • Latency – The time it takes for the I/O request to be completed. 

Latency is often overlooked, but it determines the experience that the video editor will have. When the editor presses the play button, will she get the file to start immediately or has to wait for a second and get a spinning wheel? And since each editor uses these actions hundreds of times per hour, what is the impact on productivity if they have to wait? And if they do, how frustrated and exhausted will they be by the end of each day.  

Collaboration

If you have a single person who films, edits, and colors the video content, you might not need to worry about this one for now. The editor can likely use an external SSD or a RAID system to store all of their media files. 

However, once you work with two or more people, you should immediately switch to a centralized storage solution. 

Each workstation is connected over ethernet to the storage server in a traditionally shared storage environment. This provides a good solution for teams working in the same building and having the IT resources to support them.

A good NAS should allow you to stream your data in real-time as long as you are connected to it and everyone who needs to access it is in the same building. It may require a larger initial investment and someone on-site to support it. 

In the past few years, the question of how to collaborate on video projects has become increasingly important for many organizations. With the pandemic lockdowns and the fact that video production has become the primary way of communication with customers and prospects for many organizations, the urge to find a permanent solution to this problem is getting stronger every day. 

Many video teams resort to sync and share platforms such as Dropbox, Google Drive, and Box. These solutions are not designed for video content creators and don’t offer workflows that suit the creators’ needs.

The way they operate requires users to wait until the file is completely downloaded to their local system to use it. And as we covered in the section above about size, these files can be rather large. So this method is counterproductive. 

Identifying breakdowns in a video editor’s workflow is only a fraction of the battle, while the real struggle is finding the perfect solution. Factors that need to be considered are:

  • Do I have any storage or file size limitations?

  • How will it perform?

  • How will it impact collaboration?

  • How much training will the video editors need?

  • How does it affect our budget?

File size with filespaces

When examining storage solutions for video editors, a key component is ensuring they can work with any file size while maintaining a vast amount of total storage space. In a perfect world that eliminates breakdowns in the workflow, they need a solution with unlimited upload size and storage space. Additionally, as technology advances past 4K and 8K footage, video editors will inherently need more space at a moment’s notice.

LucidLink filespaces are engineered as cloud-native, which takes advantage of cloud architecture and its ability to handle huge files.  

Video editors can work uninterrupted on any file size imaginable. This cloud-native framework means LucidLink filespaces are fully scalable and prepared for future enhancements in video production and content creation.

High-performing filespaces

As stated earlier, the performance of storage solutions is a critical aspect of the video editing workflow. Any project, big or small, will incur severe delays and budgetary surprises because of latency and performance issues. Hundreds of clicks per hour, multiplied by even 1 second of delay per click, means several hours per week have been lost to latency.

LucidLink filespaces remove the problem of distance and latency in cloud environments by reducing the traffic between applications and remote storage. Dramatically boosting responsiveness, we enable file data to be delivered efficiently and streamed on-demand. In short, multiple hours per week will go back to the video editor’s creative process when working with the LucidLink solution.

Filespaces for seamless collaboration

The video editing workflow continues to evolve, with a typical production requiring more than one editor to complete the project. Sometimes this is related to the scale of the project; other times, it may be because a particular talent is required to complete certain scenes. Regardless of the root cause, the need remains the same: instant, reliable, and seamless collaboration between editors and the assets involved in the project.

LucidLink filespaces create the ideal solution for video editors because they provide users immediate access to files, regardless of location. Data appears as if it is locally stored on the end user’s system, allowing for fast, native integration with editing solutions. It is possible because LucidLink uses a single mount point to connect to a global namespace and refers to it as a local, shared volume. Filespaces enable globally distributed teams to stream data directly to and from the object store without downloading and synchronizing files. LucidLink eliminates redundant file duplication, ensuring users work off the most recent version. 

Filespaces are made to be simple

For video editors, functionality and ease of use are one of their primary concerns. Their focus is on creating content, and they have been hired to do. Adding additional steps, training, or considerations to their workflow will only lead to breakdowns, excessively long work hours, and eventually compromises to quality and deadlines. A creative mind should have their attention on one thing: being creative.

LucidLink filespaces take the burden off of the user in terms of setup and usability. Setup requires downloading and installing the Lucid Client to the user’s workstation, eliminating the need for additional appliances, physical OR virtual. Now video editors can instantly access assets without a comprehensive IT rollout or installation of equipment.

Filespaces work equally well over LAN and WAN and offer a concurrent streaming architecture, reduce network chatter, and end-to-end encryption (AES-256 in GCM mode) that protects data at rest and in flight. Filespaces are simple to use, require no additional infrastructure or unique configuration, and are compatible with any cloud (public, private, or hybrid), all major operating systems (Windows, Linux, macOS), and any file type.

Filespaces remain cost-efficient

With all the different solutions out there, calculating the cost and determining the return on investment can be a daunting task. The cornucopia of solutions requires a special degree just to decipher the expenses and fees related, making most storage budgets “flexible” each month. Solutions that require constant downloads result in mysterious and fluctuating egress fees every month, whereas solutions that require appliances mean you will be adding more and upgrading throughout the lifecycle. Both of these situations add to the total cost of storage, which often gets overlooked.

LucidLink’s unique architecture boosts performance while creating one of the most cost-effective solutions in the market. LucidLink’s block access prevents “single get” downloads for each client accessing a file, retrieving only the portions that you need from your cloud storage provider. This dramatically reduces the amount of egress charged for using the cloud.

LucidLink’s SaaS approach reduces storage budgets further because only the Lucid Client is required for installation. Using LucidLink filespaces completely eliminates the layers of expense incurred by additional infrastructure such as storage appliances, cloud gateways, or caching devices. 

The sight solution for your video content team

LucidLink’s approach improves scalability, reliability, and data durability while enhancing team collaboration and productivity. Users benefit from time, cost savings, tighter control over data storage, security, and device and sovereignty mandates.

Using LucidLink, customers can:

  • Consolidate their data in a secure, cloud-based SaaS platform

  • Provide immediate data access with no need to download and synchronize files

  • Gain rapid access to any size file from remote or globally distributed locations

  • Run file workloads in the cloud

  • Share information securely with end-to-end file encryption

LucidLink brings shared file services directly to the users no matter where they happen to be working at that moment. It is an ideal solution for organizations looking to empower remote video editors, enabling easy access to data files while at the same time maintaining a centralized file repository. 

Video editors are known to work long hours with intense schedules. Electing to use LucidLink will improve the workflow for any video editor and provide benefits in time management, quality of work, and mental health.