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Quantel Unveils Zone Magic

New technology enables federated workflow with media sharing and production (September 15, 2005)

In another of its classic 'lateral thinking' breakthroughs, Quantel has solved the broadcaster's nightmare of local and remote media sharing in server-based production systems. Unveiled to the world at IBC following two years' intensive development, the technology has been named Zone Magic. Zone Magic enables local and remote media sharing and production that is secure, flexible and - critically - highly network efficient.

Zone Magic introduces a genuine federated workflow that can span a room, a department, a building, a city, a country or the entire world. Zone Magic is an enterprise-wide extension of Quantel's patented Frame Magic technology that also uses Quantel's Split Remote developments to broaden the application beyond a single location server environment to any number of systems, located anywhere in the world.

Zone Magic has massive operational and commercial benefits for broadcasters. At a local level, a single organisation may be servicing the differing needs of several broadcast channels, based on some shared, and some 'private', source material. Zone Magic's federated workflow allows the organisation to simply and securely specify precisely which users have access to shared material on various servers, and which have exclusive access to material that is private to an individual channel.

With Zone Magic, it doesn't matter where the content actually is the editor simply works with it as if it were on their desktop; no more un-editable or flattened files, and no more lock-out because someone else is using the file. Zone Magic is invisible to the user, allowing them to concentrate on unlimited creativity, not limiting technology.

Scaling up a level, Zone Magic provides a brilliant bridge for a broadcaster with two or more regional locations. Typically, national-interest material and finished stories will be shared, while local news may or may not be of wider interest. Thanks to Zone Magic's federated workflow, all regions can browse the contents of the others' sQ systems and if they desire, edit it remotely to suit their own regional storyline at browse resolution (so making only low network demands). Only the finished piece is then pulled over the network at broadcast resolution together with any 'tails' in case the edits need to be further refined.

At a global level, a remote broadcast truck at an international sports event may be editing its own material on its on-board Quantel sQ system but will also want to pull on central resources for archive, interviews etc. Zone Magic allows the remote truck editor to browse, choose and edit material held on the headquarters sQ system (all at browse resolution, so making low network demands), and to pull in the just the finished piece at full resolution once again optimising network efficiency.

Finally, at a creative level, Zone Magic is a truly liberating technology. For the first time broadcasters can pool their production resources across the whole of their organisation, no matter whether they are in different offices, towns or even countries.

"Broadcasters have for years faced a major problem with limited network capacity in the face of the need to transfer large amounts of broadcast quality material," says Norman Rouse, Quantel Marketing Manager, News. "In developing Zone Magic, Quantel has ingeniously and simply avoided the need to deal with the problem. The result is the kind of federated workflow with the complete flexibility and security that broadcasters have dreamed of for many years."

About Quantel
Quantel is dedicated to creating new tools for the new digital age, covering everything from terrestrial and satellite television to broadband internet, DVD and d-cinema. Quantel systems combine industry-leading performance with total scalability in both hardware and software across post production, graphics, digital intermediate, news and sports production for multiple resolution, team-working environments.

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Related Keywords:Quantel, Zone Magic, Frame Magic, Split Remote, sQ,

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