At NAB 2022, Quantum’s three new storage products focus on the demands of high-volume, collaborative content production, including speed and capacity but also intelligence and detailed asset management.
The H4000 supports shared storage for small, independent teams whose members need to work together and manage video data from dispersed locations. The F2100 is for larger organisations that need high speed, high capacity and enough processing power for AR/VR and other complex work. Last is a new system devoted to customisable AI functionality, using Quantum CatDV asset management software. This system works with tools on NVIDIA’s AI platform concerned with automation, curation and monetisation.
H4000 Essential Collaborative Shared Storage
The new Quantum H4000 Essential appliance integrates Quantum CatDV media asset management and Quantum StorNext 7 shared storage software on the H4000 storage platform. H4000 Essential includes highly available shared storage and automatic content indexing, discovery and workflow collaboration for small creative teams.
The H4000 was developed to make the systems and techniques used by larger studios, broadcasters and post facilities available to smaller organisations. It does not require specialized IT skills to set up and support and has features that integrate media management and storage so that teams will need to spend less time searching for content while they create and work. The appliances have a low entry-level price.
“The new H4000 Essential has the most important capabilities of two platforms – CatDV and StorNext – and removes the complexity and time needed to manage them separately and set up production workflows. The time it takes to set up a new project or team in H4000 Essential is very short – whether users are working directly on the storage, collaborating remotely from the field, managing multiple projects simultaneously, or all the above,” said Dave Clack, vice president and general manager, Cloud Software and Analytics, Quantum.
CatDV Plus StorNext
StorNext collaborative shared storage systems start at either 48TB or 96TB of raw storage in a compact 2U server, expandable up to 384TB by purchasing extra capacity. The high-availability dual-controller architecture and 25GbE networking connection to customer networks makes it possible to start projects quickly. The user experience is also designed to help teams get up and running faster.
Unified StorNext and CatDV accounts can be created with StorNext-powered SMB storage volume-sharing. Quantum CatDV is pre-installed and pre-configured for use by up to 10 named users, including use of the Adobe Premiere Pro CatDV Panel integrated with Quantum Cloud-Based Analytics (CBA) software for remote, proactive system monitoring.
StorNext shared storage operations may be used to trigger file ingest, metadata extraction, proxy and filmstrip creation without file tree polling. In some systems you can poll the file system looking for changes, but this approach is usually inefficient and hard to scale. Other automated features include automatic content cataloguing and indexing based on folder structure, made immediately available to all users.
Backblaze B2 Cloud Storage
Archiving plugins for Backblaze B2 Cloud Storage, or various types of S3-compatible storage, are available as a way to extend CatDV’s searchable catalogue as projects are completed and moved to cloud storage, while keeping them available for recall if needed on the H4000 Essential.
“The H4000 Essential's features are matched with the Backblaze B2 Archive plugin. Through the visual catalogues in the UI, teams can scale up and protect archives, and maintain visibility into all the content they have stored on Backblaze B2,” said Nilay Patel, vice president of sales and partnerships at Backblaze.
Nick Smith, vice president technology, Exertis Broadcast, noted the speed at which they can launch a fully configured and integrated instance of StorNext-powered shared storage and Quantum CatDV, which makes the system’s tools accessible to the content teams across their network of resellers. The H4000 Essential is available to order now from resellers.
F2100 NVMe Storage
Quantum is releasing a new generation of its F-Series portfolio, the F2100 NVMe storage appliance at NAB. The new system is faster and features more NVMe storage capacity than the earlier models. NVMe storage lends speed and parallel processing to production workflows, rendering and video and image processing. The F2100 ships with the recent Quantum block storage software release, which unifies the user experience across F-Series NVMe storage and H-Series SSD/HDD storage, and added flexible configuration options and better reporting and monitoring.
The F2100 is fully integrated with Quantum Cloud-Based Analytics software for proactive system monitoring. All of these customer applications are accessed using the MyQuantum online service delivery portal, a single-entry point where users manage their support cases, search Quantum documentation, download software, and monitor and analyse their Quantum assets.
Quantum indicates increases in performance of up to 50GB/s for multi-client reads. In capacity, a choice of drive sizes in 24 drive arrays include 15.36TB, 7.68TB and 3.84 TB for a maximum raw storage capacity of 737.28TB in a 2U system, suitable to meet demands from modern media, VFX, life science and AI/ML applications.
Teams can also use the Quantum StorNext 7 file system pools feature to create drive volumes composed of different types of storage mediums together inside the single system and define policies for moving the files between the pools. For example, the F2100 and spinning disk volumes could be grouped with this feature so that users can fine-tune their workflow storage for performance, capacity and cost, all under a single StorNext 7 namespace.
The F2100 has pre-configured RAID 6 volumes for fast deployment, and a connectivity choice of 8 ports of 100Gb/s Ethernet or 16 ports of 32Gb FibreChannel. The F2100 NVMe storage appliance is available now from Quantum resellers.
NVIDIA AI, Analytics and Automation
Quantum is showing a new system at NAB that can analyze and enrich video content used in broadcast, post-production, sports and other media workflows. It integrates Quantum’s CatDV asset management and automation platform and the NVIDIA AI platform, using NVIDIA A2 Tensor Core GPU infrastructure. CatDV software accesses AI and machine learning capabilities from NVIDIA Deepstream, Riva and Maxine SDKs, all of which are part of the NVIDIA AI platform.
Made as is a streaming analytic toolkit to build AI-powered applications, DeepStream takes the streaming data as input -- from a webcam, video file or RTSP stream -- and uses AI and computer vision to generate insights from pixels for understanding of the environment. NVIDIA Riva is a GPU-accelerated SDK for building Speech AI applications. These are customised per use case and work in real-time.
The NVIDIA Maxine suite of SDKs, also GPU-accelerated, rebuilds human-to-human A/V communication skills with AI, using standard microphones and cameras, for clearer online interaction. These skills can be used as features and built into customisable deep learning pipelines.
“Quantum CatDV has used NVIDIA GPU systems for years as part of our media transformation functionality. With this new system, users can add NVIDIA’s AI and ML systems to content workflows and use them to reveal further value in content libraries and curate more precisely and accurately,” said Dave Clack, vice president and general manager, Cloud Software and Analytics, Quantum.
It can also be considered an on-premises alternative to cloud-delivered AI services, taking advantage of high-performance GPU hardware in an asset management and automation platform. Common content-tagging and enhancement tasks may be automated -- such as object recognition within video frames, speech-to-text transcription, video and audio super-resolution, and others -- to add metadata to video and image files, saving time and money.
This enhanced video enrichment capability was first demonstrated at NVIDIA GTC in March 2022, using as an example a sports broadcaster who wanted to find all instances of referee yellow cards across hundreds of hours of soccer footage. Once objects or actions within the video frames were identified, this content was then compiled into a ‘supercut’ within CatDV with fully indexed and correlated timeline markers for human expert review, potentially saving hours of work.
The Quantum AI content enhancement automation system is comprised of Quantum CatDV Enterprise with CatDV Automation, integrated with the StorNext shared file storageS environment. NVMe storage to accelerate content movement and archive to Quantum ActiveScale, Quantum Scalar tape, or S3-compatible storage are options.
The AI/ML integration based on NVIDIA’s AI platform SDKs is also supplied with the system, with A2 Tensor Core GPU infrastructure pipeline integration for Quantum CatDV proxy generation, transcoding and AI acceleration. Custom AI/ML development for specific applications or to enable development teams is optional. www.quantum.com