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My archival purchase decision is...

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Les Fitzpatrick
My archival purchase decision is...
on May 6, 2011 at 8:28:29 pm

My journey through archive land has been long and exhausting. It began with a strong desire to find something other than LTO tape. I now know LTO is the only viable option that will allow a good night's sleep free of worries about budget and efficacy.

From my perspective there are five critical elements to my business model including sales, conceptualization, field production, editorial and archival. Everything in between, NLE, storage, lights, audio, etc. are simply accessories to the prime directive of selling script to screen production.

Until now, I had no viable archival solution, choosing to gamble my money on lenses, microphones, software and shoes for the kids. The 7200rpm "House" won recently when I lost countless hours, cash and credibility following the loss of two projects during the final stages of post production. Suddenly, $10,000 for an archival solution seemed luxuriously cheap, if installed the day before the crash.

My personal March (and April) Madness ended with a final four line-up of BRU, Cache-A, Storage DNA and an "ACME" cobbled-by-me system using off-the-shelf-technologies.

BRU and their proprietary solution joined the ACME option in the losers bracket. Theirs was a sad departure because they offered substantial cost savings. Cache-A became the odds-on favorite, especially following NAB and glowing reports from blog world. Clearly Cache-A has been in the game a long time and their adoption of LTFS is important. They win awards, garner lots of positive press and simply work, while remaining in a price range approachable for small production companies.

I chose the Storage DNA Evolution with their 8 slot auto-loader. It arrives in a week or so. Google Storage DNA and you'll find scant product or customer reviews. Dig a little deeper and you'll see an approach to archiving for the small business owner that takes work flow into account on a much deeper level than Cache-A. Go one step further and get their engineering people on the phone and you'll be left wondering when they will add quality marketing people to their staff because they aren't yet telling a story that is very compelling.

This post isn't about the details. It's not about what's wrong with Cache-A. This content is not delivered to sway, urge or convince anyone to make a purchase decision. My journey continues. I won't know whether I made the right choice for several weeks or months. Meanwhile, as I am able, I'll report back on topics from shipping, to set-up, archiving to restoration. I also plan to learn quite a lot about their collaboration tools, hoping those become as indispensable as my archival tool.

Here's hoping for few tears (unless of joy).

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Andrew Richards
Re: My archival purchase decision is...
on May 8, 2011 at 6:02:49 pm

Good stuff, thanks for sharing. I agree Storage DNA's marketing needs to catch up to their engineering. From looking at their site you'd never know they had their Evolution product at all. Google found me a PDF press release about it, but that is all. I guess if you have to pick one to prioritize, they picked the important one.

Good luck with your new purchase, let us know how it goes.


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Michael Griggs
Re: My archival purchase decision is...
on May 28, 2011 at 1:42:05 am

I have also been looking in to the LTO archival deal......Would you mind sharing what sort of pricing level you got for your DNA system?

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bart stevens
Re: My archival purchase decision is...
on Sep 30, 2011 at 6:53:46 pm

I'm also looking at LTO archive solutions, Windows Adobe Suite workflow.
How did your solution work out?

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