Scaling Up for Expanding Media Production at Nemeton TV

For more than 25 years, Nemeton TV has been producing captivating sports content for major broadcast networks. “Nemeton TV contributes to virtually every sporting event that happens on the island of Ireland,” says Irial Mac Murchú, the company’s CEO. “We produce entire events for TV and online streaming but also provide satellite uplinks, create clips and highlights for social media, archive content, and much more.”

Beyond supporting Irish organizations such as the GAA (Gaelic Athletic Association) and Irish broadcaster TG4, Nemeton TV produces content and supplies people and facilities for BBC Scotland, BBC Wales, Sky Sport, and numerous other organizations. In addition, Nemeton TV collaborates on a range of non-sporting content and helps educate the next generation of media production professionals.

All of this work requires robust, reliable data storage. But the company’s existing storage infrastructure had trouble keeping up with a growing business.

Capitalizing on new opportunities—and facing storage challenges
For Nemeton TV, demand for streaming services has increased tremendously, including from non-traditional clients. For example, a rising number of corporate sponsors are working with Nemeton TV to stream sporting events on their corporate websites.

Unfortunately, the company’s storage infrastructure limited its ability to capitalize on new opportunities. “By 2011, we had a tapeless workflow with a media asset system and LTO archive option, all wrapped up into one environment,” says Fiachna Mac Murchú, technical systems manager at Nemeton TV. “But we came up against limitations of that system and became very frustrated. With our rate of growth, we knew that we had to move to a more scalable platform.”

A new storage environment had to provide fast access to content for production and post-production workflows. Maintaining high reliability was also critical. “When you’re producing live sports, you have to make sure fans can see every moment of action instantly as it happens,” says Irial.

Moving the business forward with StorNext
The team’s previous experience with Apple Xsan storage led them to consider Quantum StorNext—Xsan is based on the StorNext file system. An archive project for a large client provided an opportunity for hands-on evaluation of StorNext. “We got familiar with the system and the interface, and we were able to experience the speed and uptime of the platform,” says Fiachna. “We decided to explore a full Quantum StorNext solution with an LTO library for our future work.”

Ultimately, the Nemeton TV team selected a Quantum solution powered by StorNext scale-out file store. A Quantum Scalar tape library enables teams to draw from older content to create clips, highlights, and other compilations.

Achieving exceptional reliability for consistent viewing
The Quantum solution provides the reliability that Nemeton TV needs to deliver sporting events and other content uninterrupted to consumers. “Since installing the Quantum solution, we’ve had 100 percent uptime,” says Irial.

Accelerating workflows
With the Quantum solution, Nemeton TV teams have the performance to rapidly ingest, access, transcode, output, and archive large volumes of high-resolution content. “Since the Quantum solution has been installed, the speeds have been astronomical,” says Fiachna. “Our transfers from disk to LTO tape and back are multiple times faster than with our old solution.”

Scaling up for new business and envisioning new services
“With the Quantum StorNext platform in place, we no longer have limitations in terms of bidding for new jobs,” says Irial. “We can go for very big jobs knowing our storage environment can take whatever we throw at it.”

The Nemeton TV team is now prepared for the future, ready to support new types of productions and services plus a growing client base. “Storage is fundamental to everything we do,” says Irial. “With Quantum, we have the foundation for building a range of new services and ultimately delivering exciting new experiences to viewers.”