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Product Marketing Manager
FUJIFILM Recording Media U.S.A., Inc.
Over the past decade, the Media and Entertainment (M&E) industry has experienced a considerable increase in the amount of data generated due to the transition from traditional media workflows to fully digital environments. Today, the retention and accessibility of digital assets and video are incredibly vital to maintaining a competitive advantage. Fujifilm understands M&E companies’ digital storage challenges; that’s why companies like MLB, The LA Kings Ice Hockey Team, Chainsaw Edit, and others have turned to Fujifilm tape to ensure the integrity of their video assets while drastically reducing long-term storage costs.
Today, tape storage is used in modern infrastructure to deliver high storage capacities with low cost of ownership compared to other storage solutions.
Modern M&E companies continue incorporating data tape storage into their environments to combat costs. Nowadays storage requirements are on a different scale from where M&E companies first started, and data will continue to increase exponentially as the industry moves from HD to 4K, and soon to 8K recording. Today, a single digital 4K camera can record up to 1.5 TB for every hour of filming. Before this, companies like the LA Kings only recorded 200 GB in an entire year. Most IT budgets in the industry are not growing enough to support today’s data deluge—of which data storage can consume 70%.
“Tape storage in general is the lowest cost storage of any type of storage,” says Storage Economics expert Brad Johns
The cost of using LTO-7 tape is as low as $0.01/GB which can be 7 times less expensive than disk storage over a ten year period.* Additionally, tape doesn’t use any energy when it’s not being used, on the other hand, disk systems use 76 times more electrical power than a similarly configured tape system.* “Tape storage in general is the lowest cost storage of any type of storage,” says Brad Johns, founder of Brad Johns Consulting LLC, a storage consulting firm.
Why are leading M&E companies turning to tape?
- Extremely cost-effective
- Highly reliable
- Portable to use at remote locations
- Scalable to extremely large capacities
- Open standards to allow the interchange of files
LTO tape is an ideal solution for M&E companies. LTO is an open format designed for interoperability and together with LTFS, provides easy data access and management—perfect for easy file share, high performance, and improved workflow.
How are M&E companies are using tape today?
NewBay Media has compiled how LTO technology and LTFS manage every stage of content creation/ management:
- Production. LTO technology with LTFS protects original content with on-site backup copy, reduces camera media inventory costs, and enables the interchange of content between production sites and post-production.
- Post-Production. LTO technology with LTFS offers a low-cost storage solution for work-in-progress, scales to meet large capacities, provides a standard means of interchange across the post-production ecosystem, and gives users the ability to offload less active content from expensive, high-performance flash or disks.
- Distribution. LTO technology with LTFS supports the transfer of large amounts of digital content at low cost and serves as the de-facto standard for submission of content—to studios and between business partners.
- Archiving. LTO technology with LTFS is ideal for long-term storage due to its durability, reliability, and low cost of operation. It scales to meet very large capacity requirements and supports rapid restoration for the repurposing of content.
Tape’s low-cost acquisition price per gigabyte and TCO advantage compared with other storage mediums make tape the most cost-effective technology for long-term data retention. Today, M& E companies can compare the total cost of ownership of data retention using TCO calculators created by Brad Johns Consulting, https://page.dternity.net/TCO.html, and the LTO consortium, https://www.lto.org/resources/.
More M&E companies are seeing the advantages of LTO tape, which can store massive amounts of data and combat ever-increasing storage costs across production, post-production, distribution, or archiving.
*Source: ESG report “Analyzing the Economic Value of LTO Tape for Long-Term Data Retention.”
*Source: The Clipper Group “Continuing the Search for the Right Mix of Long-Term Storage Infrastructure —A TCO Analysis of Disk and Tape Solutions.”