I assume you’re reading this article because you have already decided storing hard drives and camera media in a desk drawer is not a good idea and you’re looking for a better way to manage your content. Time to skip past the many stages of grief related to lost media and awkward file sharing, and move forward with improving the accessibility and uses for your content resources.
Some really good news
With recent advancements in virtualization and cloud resources, the cost and ease organizing your media has taken a quantum leap forward. First let’s agree on some terms for the common types of asset management systems.
Post and broadcast production asset management systems:
In most post and broadcast environments, a Production Asset Management system (PAM) is perfect. For Larger applications or tighter integration with other business systems, a Media Asset Management system (MAM) is a more functional and customizable choice. Digital Asset Manager systems (DAM) can be used for post and broadcast, however MAMs are typically used with DAMs to provide better workflow functionality.
Secure Sharing & Remote Access
PAMs, MAMs or DAMs consider secure files sharing with coworkers and clients to be a core feature. Assets can be directly accessed via browsers or other applications, saving everyone time and effort. To minimize bandwidth for these purposes, proxy (low resolution) versions of the files are used with access to the full resolution version for download as needed. This is the single most important issues when determining system hardware and cloud resources.
Clients requiring remote access or working on mobile devices can also require real-time proxies. In general, the more proxies you need, the more processing you’ll need. If your demands moves beyond a few editors or require real-time proxies, special hardware or dedicated cloud/virtual services may be required (ie: it can get expensive quickly). However the flexibility and benefits may be well worth the extra costs.
MAMs, Future Proofing & APIs
For larger applications, MAMs can provide real-time access to data for other business systems. This opens up functionality for ecommerce, traffic, compliance and many other crucial business functions. Communication with other business systems is usually managed through a common application programming interface or “API”. The need for APIs is largely related to customization and real-time data sharing. For systems requiring customization or sharing program data, API is a big feature. If you think APIs will become important for your future needs, this may determine if the extra cost for a MAM compared to a PAM is a good value. If you invest in a MAM, you should confirm the API documentation is well maintained and supported by the manufacturer.
Ease of Use Is Everything
Editors don’t like to leave the editing application while they are working. For this reason, PAMs or MAMs that allow editors to access and manage assets from within a workflow application’s user interface are highly valued. To accomplish this, the MAM or PAM asset features appear as a panel or menu option. This is a big time saver as bouncing between applications becomes unnecessary. DAMs don’t usually provide this feature for post and broadcast applications.
Each asset management system has its strengths, weaknesses and specialized features. There are 100’s of manufacturers, and each have their own market focus. Let’s compare MAMs, PAMs and DAMs from the post production and broadcast perspectives. Below is a brief comparison for each system type.
PAM (Production Asset Management)
Editshare Flow, Avid Interplay, SNS ShareBrowser, Facilis FastTracker, ProMax Platform
MAM (Media Asset Management)
Arvato MediaPortal, Square Box Systems CatDV
DAM (Digital Asset Management)
MicroSoft Sharepoint, Workfront (formerly AtTask), Adobe
Which One is Right for My Application? MAM, PAM or DAM?
– Fear not! There is likely a product off the shelf that’s right for you… but it will take some tweaking. If this article helped answer a few questions, it likely created even more. Drilling down on the details of the many manufacturers and options can be the more challenging part of the process. We can help you get it right today while keeping an eye on future trends to protect your investment.
Give us a call, chat or get a quick quote today!
Remembering Ray Dolby, Audio and Video Pioneer
For most people, “Dolby” is just a light on their home entertainment system. For working audio and video professionals, the Dolby Company founded by Ray Dolby has been the backbone of technically superior products and technologies for over 4 decades. Ray died September 12th 2013 at the age of 80.
I first experienced Ray Dolby’s genius in the early 1970’s. At the time, tape based audio players and recorders had limited dynamic rage and audible “hiss”. Dolby offered the early processing features needed to expand the fidelity and reduce noise in the studio and home. This early awareness of merging technology and solving practical problems would be Dolby’s focus for many decades to come.
As a chairman of one of the Audio Engineering Society chapters I experienced personally for many years, Ray being very active in promoting the highest quality engineering practices and bringing new people into the world of professional audio and video. It would be impossible to touch on all of Ray’s life accomplishments in a single blog or even a book. We simply wish to thank one of our industries most influential pioneers for his great work and service. (View an interview with Ray from the AES website).
Thanks Dr. Ray, your work will live on for generations!
Today Dolby is primarily a licensing company and still very centric to the broadcast and entertainment world’s advancing technologies. EAR has been a Dolby reseller since 1978.
EAR is proud to provide Neve/AMS products
For more than 40 years AMS Neve has represented the pinnacle of professional audio design and engineering. EAR is proud to provide their products as a compliment to our selection of audio products for recording and post production.
With more than a hundred world class analogue and digital designers, software specialists and audio purists Neve/AMS is dedicated to the advancement and evolution of professional audio products and workflows.
Based in northern England, AMS Neve has built a leading presence in the ultra high-end feature film scoring and mixing environments, the post-production and broadcast industries as well as in professional and project music studios worldwide.
Contact an EAR audio products specialist today for complete details and special professional pricing. 800-473-6914 or on line.
EAR is proud to be chosen as a new reseller for Bricasti reverb products.
Bricasti provides the highest level of musicality and ease of control imaginable in a processor dedicated to the task of reverberation. A modern high resolution digital design, utilizing a stunning array of the latest DSP processors, provides a platform for the long overdue next step in reverb processing algorithms. A separate fully differential analog section and dedicated transformer based linear power supply provide the finest analog specifications of any product of it’s kind.
An exceptionally strong stainless steel chassis, and a tooled aluminum front panel, combine with a classic high visibility display and straight forward human interface, to complete an enduring design that is intended to fulfill its role, now and into the future.
For more information including special professional pricing, contact an EAR product specialist at 800-473-6914!
Create complex, high-quality audio productions using the full capabilities of Pro Tools HD software in a lower-cost native solution.
- Create bigger sessions with up to 192 audio tracks and up to 64 channels of I/O using a single PCIe card
- Record, edit, and mix with ease using Pro Tools HD software, the industry’s most trusted toolset
- Attain the highest performance and lowest latency of any native digital audio workstation
- Get the ideal tracking experience and set-and-forget direct monitoring with an integrated low-latency monitor mode
- Achieve ultimate audio quality with a Pro Tools HD Series interface (sold separately)
- Boost your capabilities with advanced automation, surround mixing, input monitoring, AFL/PFL solo, destructive punch, and other professional features
- Get better sounding mixes with RTAS plug-ins and Automatic Delay Compensation on hardware and software inserts
- Share sessions with Pro Tools|HD users without any loss of data
- Synchronize to timecode and video reference, with frame-edge accuracy, when using SYNC HD (sold separately)
- Total flexibility—work with Mac or Windows, Pro Tools HD or third-party software, and more
Pricing and Availability for Pro Tools | HD Native system will be available worldwide November 5 starting at $3,495 USD.
Contact EAR for more details and to order today 1-800-473-6914