Editing in the cloud

  • With Adrian Pennington

Editing in the cloud

Contributing Editor Adrian Pennington has a look at the ever more important role that remote editing and cloud distributed workflows continue to play...

One of the biggest challenges surrounding the topic is the definition of what it means to do editing in the cloud.

“Everyone has their own opinion which can ‘cloud’ the subject entirely. Let’s try to clear up this cloudy mess,” says Hans Baumgaertner, Solutions Owner - Cloud Editing, VDI & Post Production, Qvest.  By moving everything to the cloud including the powerful workstations and production storage filled with hi-res original files, it removes the separation point between what is on-prem and what is cloud.

“In this situation, everyone would work either at the office using their office laptop with one or several large monitors at their desk, or work from home. Finally, with a supporting ecosystem providing an enterprise-grade “space” for editors to use their same NLE tools and plugins without compromises, it might one day not even be necessary to call it ‘cloud editing’, but just ‘editing.’” 

Recently Qvest launched Qvest Production Spaces, which means an open ecosystem, designed for use cases such as Adobe Premiere Pro editing. Baumgaertner explains, “Qvest Production Spaces was created because we realized that such a system didn’t exist on the market that covered absolutely everything end-to-end, and more. It’s an enterprise offering supplied and delivered by Qvest as a single partner simplifying the entire process for enterprises looking to modernize and move to the cloud.” 

Scratch the surface of cloud-first post workflows and you may find LucidLink under the hub. It’s a component of many cloud enabled facilities and was also used to connect the distributed animation teams during production on Oscar winning short The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse. 

It’s a file system that stores media in the cloud and allows anyone to work on it locally.  

“Traditionally, you have compute next to the data but continually moving data around will cost,” says Peter Thompson, CEO and Co-Founder, LucidLink. “If you can decouple the need to have data next to the application that is when workflows are liberated. LucidLink offer a single source of truth in the cloud that can be used as easily with the same performance remotely as in the office. Crucially, we enable users to collaborate on a common set of data without having to moved it anywhere.” 

In technical terms LucidLink is network attached storage and it works with any application from Resolve to Avid to Adobe. 

Less known is its use in live production where LucidLink provides the connection between camera feeds at a venue and remote editors for highlights clipping. Sky Sports highlight edits of this year’s Super Bowl was also edited remotely over LucidLink in a workflow that also included NEP and EVS. 

Transitioning to cloud-based collaborative editing can also pose some challenges for clients used to working with on-premise solutions.  

However, as more and more media professionals get the experience of real-time remote collaboration, much faster rendering times, and ease of use, there’s a growing demand for cloud-based solutions.  

“Traditionally, one of the biggest challenges has been the storage and transfer time of large files, but we see that with our innovative transfer methods and cost-effective storage, the big benefits of cloud editing outweigh the challenges still left,” says Helge Høibraaten, Co-founder of Norway-based CuttingRoom. 

“At CuttingRoom, we've designed our cloud-based editing platform to be user-friendly, with familiar tools and interfaces. We offer flexible pricing and scalable storage solutions to meet customers' needs. We also prioritize security and privacy, ensuring that our clients' valuable media assets are always protected.” 

Editing has gone through major technology shifts before, just think of film cutting and splicing to videotape editing or the introduction of NLEs. CuttingRoom says it is devoted to helping customers create stories faster, better, and together. 

“When creating the CuttingRoom Cloud Editor, we wanted to ensure that experienced editors would feel at home immediately,” Høibraaten says. “We are also constantly innovating and improving our cloud-based editing platform. For example, we've created innovative technology and solutions to reduce latency and improve data transfer speeds, making collaborating with colleagues and clients in real-time from anywhere in the world easier and more efficient than ever. 

“Additionally, we've enhanced our timeline responsiveness, making it even faster and more responsive than most on-premise solutions, with familiar JKL and frame-by-frame navigation.  

CuttingRoom also has a rich set of integrations and tools to help users seamlessly transfer their content and graphics templates from legacy solutions to our cloud-based platform.  

“Our goal is to provide clients with the most user-friendly and efficient cloud-based editing platform on the market, while also ensuring the security and privacy of their valuable media assets.”