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Olympusat grows channels and services with Vantage media processing

Telestream, a provider of digital media tools and workflow solutions, has announced that Olympusat, the largest producer, distributor, and broadcaster of Spanish language programming in the US, has placed Telestream’s Vantage media processing platform at the core of its video production operations to enable rapid growth in their channels and services.

Olympusat provides over 100 channels of programming delivered through satellite and cable operators throughout the country. While some of these channels originate in Spain, Latin America or the Caribbean and are distributed in the US by Olympusat, the company also produces six movies each month and delivers the content from their West Palm Beach, Florida headquarters.

Olympusat’s top networks include Cine Mexicano — which is among the top five most watched channels in the USA according to RENTRAK’s USA Hispanic ratings, with a regular audience of 60 million people. Other networks include the Toku Channel, Sorpresa, Gran Cine and the newly introduced Ultra HD Plex, which provides 12+ high-definition (HD) Spanish-language movie, music and entertainment channels. Olympusat also recently launched VEMOX, an OTT platform with over 100 channels (70 Spanish, 30 English) and 30,000 hours of VOD content, which is available on Amazon Fire TV devices.

For each program, Olympusat’s video production division, Olympusat Entertainment, typically produces anything from 30 to 100 different versions to suit different platforms and markets. To help automate this vast undertaking, they installed a Vantage system with nine nodes of transcoding, of which three are GPU-accelerated Telestream Lightspeed servers and six are generic Intel machines at the center of their transcoding operations.

“Producing and distributing this much content for so many platforms can only be achieved with a lot of talent and a high degree of process automation, and Vantage is ideally suited to the task. We added the Lightspeed servers to help when we were faced with a high priority urgent task to encode over 5000 titles to high quality H.264, and had very little time to respond,” says Larry Dalton Broadcast/IT Specialist at Olympusat Entertainment.

The intelligent workflow manager in Vantage makes this a simple and efficient process while Vantage “run-on” rules direct tasks, which can benefit from GPU acceleration to the three Lightspeed servers and directs the other tasks to the generic Intel servers.

Dalton and his team edit their shows on Adobe Premiere, then export the finished edits to the Vantage system. At present this process requires some manual data input from the edit staff, but Dalton plans to implement the new Adobe Premiere panel in Vantage version 7 to streamline this procedure and automate the submission process to Vantage workflows.

The Vantage Panel for Premiere Pro will make the submission of media and metadata much easier and more efficient, providing Dalton and his team with a list of available workflows, and a built-in process for associating labels to the media during the submission process. With the Vantage Panel for Premiere, Olympusat Entertainment editors will be able to track the progress of any encoding job on the Vantage server through the main Premiere Pro user interface.

“We are adapting the workflows within Vantage to quickly cope with any changes in requirements, and the workflow designer in Vantage is incredibly powerful and easy to use, yet allows us to make changes in the workflows without relying on the supplier or development of new software,” comments Dalton.

“Vantage and Lightspeed are at the core of our media asset processing, and have become business-critical systems at Olympusat,” he concludes.

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