Facilis TerraBlock Fast-Tracks University of Hartford Student Broadcasting

University of Hartford STN2From crafting on-air scripts to producing and editing interviews, University of Hartford’s STN Channel 2 encourages students to get their feet wet in the broadcast field early on. Each week, students are tasked with creating a 30-minute live broadcast covering campus, local, national and world news, which airs on the university’s network and online. Throughout production and post, participants are given access to a newsroom equipped with the latest cameras, editing gear and storage – including a Facilis TerraBlock Shared Storage System to assist with the management of large video files.

STN 2 added a Facilis TerraBlock 24EX Shared Storage System to its workflow last year in an effort to accelerate post-production. Andrew Mannino, General Manager and Chief Engineer, STN 2, said, “My predecessor looked at several solutions on the market, but ultimately went with TerraBlock because it had expandability options in terms of speed that others could not match.”

Over the last year, Mannino has seen a considerable reduction in the time it takes the station to turn around broadcasts. He shared, “With TerraBlock, students can easily share project files between workstations and collaborate on the same projects simultaneously, which saves us a ton of time. On top that that, it’s very fast! If we want to render graphics or playback footage, even over Ethernet, we never have to worry about lag time.”

STN 2’s current post-production pipeline comprises two PC edit suites running Avid® Media Composer ®, which are connected to the TerraBlock via 8Gbit Fibre Channel. Additionally, STN 2 has a third Media Composer suite, two Adobe® Creative Suite® workstations and six Panasonic P2 Viewer stations for logging footage – which are all connected to TerraBlock via 1Gbit Ethernet. On occasion, editors will also bring in MacBooks and connect to their laptops to TerraBlock to edit files in programs like Apple® Final Cut Pro®.

With TerraBlock in place, the P2 editors are able to pull footage from any of the workstations connected to TerraBlock (rather than having to move everything over from an individual hard drive), which has simplified the station’s overall workflow. “Students no longer have to sign up to use whichever edit suite is holding the footage. We can access what we need when we need it,”

Mannino noted. “TerraBlock gives us one central location where we can store and access videos. It’s truly been a great asset.”

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