Bigger Is Better…Yet For Some, Never Enough

by Vincent LaForet

I’m sure that I’m not alone when I say that this year I’m likely to shoot AND access more data, more quickly and from more locations – than in all the years of my career to date – combined.

The resolution of my cameras (both still + video) keep increasing. HDR is becoming common on both, high frame rates are more common, and now: Virtual Reality… we’re talking 6-14 camera arrays in many projects these days (!)


With Ultra HD (UHD) 4/5/6k video becoming the norm, and cheaper digital medium format stills systems becoming more affordable, we will need larger and more efficient storage systems than we did last year. The prospect of UHD virtual reality is also becoming a possibility (for some, at least – maybe not in terms of consumption just yet, but definitely in terms of capture), and when you throw 6 Red EPIC Dragons together in an array, you could easily find yourself chewing through 100+ GB of data each minute.

This is why I’ve completely changed my data storage system as of last summer. I finally rid myself of a massive, $50,000+ server system that I’d be using for years. That thing ran so hot over our NYC summers that I found myself spending $700 a month in ConEd electric bills to keep the AC running just to keep it cool.

When I moved to LA five years ago, it was critical that I found a suitable location to house it. Fortunately, things have changed dramatically since then. G Tech’s Studio XL has revolutionized this as it’s a portable, efficient solution that does exactly what I need. I now have two systems set up across both coasts, with copies of everything, both hooked up to a Mac Mini to make them online 24/7 – and that I can also hook up to more powerful macs – which provides remote access from anywhere, anytime. Compared to what I had, the improved performance, size and affordability are revolutionary. read more...

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