Aardman Animation and CalDigit workflow
Paul Reeves, Technical Engineer – Aardman Animation:
“We originally bought two CalDigit 3TB VR external hard drives back in 2010 to use with two camera crews who went off shooting live action segments around the world for a production we were working on called ‘Wallace and Gromits World Of Invention’. These drives went to North and South America, Europe, Israel, Kenya, and the far east. They were used to offload all of the camera cards, and then as media drives for two portable edit laptops that were also sent with the crews. All using firewire 800 interface, and set in RAID 1 mode. For failure we bought a spare 1.5TB dive module, but have never needed to use it.”
“After that job they became stock hard drives, and were used as general transfer drives, and then when extra projects came in they were used as specific media drives for those projects.
Over the last few years, a lot of our other brand drives have failed both on their interface boards, and the spinning discs inside, and we have disposed of then, because we have been able to rely on the CalDigits and also moved a lot of general file transfers over to file servers.
The drives have been used now as the DIT drives when I work on our live action parts of shooting our commercials. In 2011 we got a Guinness world record for shooting the largest canvas animation on Pendine beach in South Wales (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fza5QdTfyxs
). The drives were used to off load both camera boxes, and then on the return journey I separated out the drives from the enclosures so from the RAID 1 there were four copies of the data in separated vehicles returning to Bristol.”
“Separately last year we also purchased a CalDigit
FASTA-6GU3 to add to a PC in our Edit department to enable high speed USB 3.0 and e-SATA drives from external production houses to be connected to, and then quickly transfer our content across to their drives.Now our two VR2s live specifically as fast on-set DIT media drives to transfer original and transcoded footage from our studios to our Edit suites at the end of a shooting day.”