Manage and Deliver Production Assets on Set

Pomfort’s Distributed Production Library for Data-Driven Production Management From Set to Facility.

What Is the Distributed Production Library?

As a DIT or the responsible person for data management on set, you are continuously acquiring data and information from multiple departments for handover to a facility. Keeping track of all data and image-related information in the daily range of activities can be daunting – but it doesn’t have to be.

Pomfort’s Distributed Production Library automatically keeps track of all information and allows you to curate original camera footage and other assets from set in a central, project-based library. The structured production information is not only available on your local computers but can be shared automatically between colleagues, units, and even with the DI facility or dailies house.

Keep Track and Collect –

With Complete Data Management and Digital Imaging.

The Distributed Production Library manages a broad range of project and media-related information. This enables authorized users to automatically share production information with colleagues when performing daily tasks. Check out a few examples of information that’s typically involved in the production pipeline and supported by Pomfort’s Distributed Production Library:

Collected Properties and Use of Information
  • File type, media format, and codec of all professional camera formats are handled for preview and transcoding.
  • Timecodes, FPS, and duration are extracted per clip and summarized for shooting day statistics.
  • File sizes and hashes are managed and checked in all data management activities for integrity, completeness, and reporting.
  • All known file locations and volumes of OCF are listed for a full reference of backup and transfer locations.
Covered Activities

Information about original camera footage is automatically collected during data management tasks such as offloading camera cards on local computers on set. While performing transfers to multiple destinations and integrity checks of all files, metadata is extracted and stored in a structured database.

Collected Properties and Use of Information
  • Exposure Information such as shutter, ISO, and white balance values are managed as a camera log and for RAW processing.
  • Processing options such as resolution, flip, flop, and anamorphic de-squeeze parameters are tracked for image processing.
  • Camera Identification is stored for tracking files to physical devices.
Covered Activities

Camera metadata is extracted from original camera footage (OCF), gathered from SDI signals, or imported from other systems. Manufacturers of professional cameras provide a range of ways to access current and recorded camera settings and clip-based metadata.

Collected Properties and Use of Information
  • ASC CDL grades and 3D LUTs are a common form of sharing look information among systems.
  • The ACES system is supported in all its versions and with latest exchange formats such as AMF and CLF.
  • Color pipeline information is maintained even for advanced setups with pre-LUTs, multiple LMTs, and secondary curves.
  • Automated look matching between looks and clips is supported based on clip name, time code, time of day, and more.
Typical Information

Look information can be imported from external sources (i.e., the “show LUTs”), extracted from OCF (if available from the camera), or be interactively maintained in the Livegrade application with the help of LUT boxes and other devices. Looks can be exported in a range of formats for other systems (also from the cloud) or used directly for playback and transcoding of dailies in Silverstack applications.

Collected Properties and Use of Information
  • Static lens information such as lens type and manufacturer, serial numbers, aperture, and focal length (for prime lenses) are stored per clip for reference.
  • Dynamic lens information such as focus distance or focal length (for zoom lenses) can be provided for post-production and VFX.
  • Shading and distortion information is received from capable lenses and can be used for preview and transfer to VFX.
Covered Activities

Lens information is provided by the camera through Cooke /i, ARRI LDS, or other protocols, or can be provided by additional hardware. Additional information such as used filters can be entered manually. Livegrade can display and store live lens metadata for reference; Silverstack can manage lens data in association with clips.

Collected Properties and Use of Information
  • Internal audio tracks can be used for preview and mixdown.
  • WAV files from audio recorders are managed like any other media file.
  • Timecode-based audio sync associates video clips and audio and aligns the timing.
  • Mix and channel information is used in transcoding with multichannel audio or stereo mixdown.
Covered Activities

Audio files are ingested from audio recorders and managed together with OCF. Audio can be embedded in transcodes (as channels or in a mixdown) and transferred together with dailies and OCF for later association and playback in editing and audio systems.

Collected Properties and Use of Information
  • Burn-Ins can include a broad range of metadata fields.
  • Synced Association between audio and video can be rendered as individual audio channels or into a stereo mixdown. Export as metadata via ALE or AAF is also possible. Look metadata can be applied during transcoding.
  • Look metadata can be applied during transcoding.
  • Wildcards for file and folder names can be used to automatically name transcoded clips with metadata.
  • ShotID QR Code can be embedded visually in transcodes for accessing metadata at any time in ShotHub.
  • Association between source files and transcodes is maintained as part of the project metadata.
  • All known file locations and volumes of dailies are listed for a full reference of backup and transfer locations.
Covered Activities

Transcoding capabilities can be used to transcode clips in proxy formats for editing, but also for viewing on mobile devices and uploading to cloud dailies services. Preparation activities for transcoding, such as adjusting looks, syncing audio, or providing slate metadata, can be distributed over several machines.

Collected Properties and Use of Information
  • Different report types can be customized for individual reporting needs.
  • Custom column layouts can be created and shared.
  • Multiple thumbnails per clip can be used in reports.
  • All metadata fields can be accessed in reports.
  • Aggregated and computed attributes are available as extra fields.
  • Computed summary sections can be added to reports.
  • Wildcards for file and folder names can be used to automatically name transcoded clips with metadata.
Covered Activities

Reports can be created to travel with OCF and dailies media. Depending on the recipient’s requirements, PDF or CSV exports are possible. For non-human readable reports, a broad range of metadata formats are supported for metadata export, such as Avid Log Exchange (ALE), XML for Final Cut Pro and Adobe Premiere, DaVinci Resolve, and more. Reports and exported metadata files are based on the information in the Distributed Production Library and thus can be created both online (with camera media available) and offline (without any footage available).

Collected Properties and Use of Information
  • Camera identifier is automatically extracted from clip name where possible.
  • Slate information and “circled takes” (such as scene, shot, and take) can be entered during playback and QC with quick-entry shortcuts.
  • Ratings, tags, and labels can be used to categorize and qualify clips.
  • Configurable custom fields help store project-individual data.
  • Use cue points for marking QC events inside clips.
Covered Activities

Slate information can be imported from other systems or entered manually. Manage QC information, custom metadata, and other annotations for enriching clip metadata with individual information.

Experience the Combined Power of Desktop- And Cloud-Applications

For Transparent Metadata Management Across All Activities.

Set work can be challenging, so knowing there is a system that has your back at all times is a strong relief. Pomfort’s Distributed Production Library provides a flexible backbone – whether you switch gear and computers or want to keep track of another unit’s activities.

Let All Work Results Arrive at the Facility

Let All Work Results Arrive at the Facility

Lay the Foundation for Post-production With Consolidated Information From Set.

The DIT is an essential ally for overall production value. The effects of activities for setup, acquisition, structuring, and verification – as well as putting everything in context – are essential and even more beneficial with physical proximity to the camera and shooting.

Pomfort’s Distributed Production Library supports DITs and data management staff with packaging, documenting, and transferring everything for ingest into the facility. With that support, trust in the handover process increases and the distance between set and facility virtually disappears.

Stay Organized in Each Individual Project

Using Conventions, Templates, and Custom Presets for Production Consistency.

Each project is slightly different, and individual requirements can show up for the various activities on set. It starts with such simple things as the chosen frame rate for shooting and continues with specifications for file structures, metadata schemes, and required file formats and report types.

Staying connected between different systems (e.g., individual data management computers) and among the team (e.g., multiple units) keeps settings and conventions in sync. Pomfort's Distributed Production Library supports the instant sharing of presets and templates, and makes production setup and reference metadata available in real-time.

Stay Organized in Each Individual Project
Hybrid Desktop and Cloud Solution

Hybrid Desktop and Cloud Solution

Leveraging Maximum Performance and Intelligent Integrations.

Although cloud services are perfect for connecting people and systems, local applications and processes are still required to do the heavy work. Transferring terabytes of data, controlling hardware, and playing back local RAW files is not possible in a browser and requires software and user interfaces running on dedicated computers on set.

Pomfort’s Distributed Production Library intelligently balances features among a range of dedicated desktop applications and cloud services. While the applications of the Silverstack family take care of all media asset management activities, the applications of the Livegrade family cover all digital imaging tasks. Pomfort’s cloud service ShotHub connects the applications, enables sync between local databases, and gives remote users 24/7 access to production metadata.

For the Camera Department and Beyond

With the camera department “collecting” all production value, the DIT becomes the banker of that value. Pomfort’s solution supports that with a reliable backbone of tools and infrastructure.

Integration of Products and Services

Film productions choose their equipment from a broad range of vendors and formats in response to their specific needs. Pomfort integrates systems by supporting industry standards and vendor interfaces with a flexible, software-based solution.

The Right Tools for the Trade

Pomfort’s software is tailored to the reality of the film set and stress-tested by professional users in productions of all complexity levels around the world. It provides depth and width depending on the individual production and thus serves any film production workflow.

Reliable Media Backups

High Performance Transfer to Physical Hard Drives and the Cloud.

As soon as a camera card comes off the camera, it’s vital to create verified backups on multiple volumes as fast as possible.

With terabytes of data being created in cameras every day, intelligent transfer to RAID systems, travel drives, and cloud destinations acts as base functionality for media management on set. Pomfort’s media asset management products come with a high-performance offload engine, state-of-the-art checksum verification, multi-destination copy, intelligent backup routing with “cascading copy” options, and automatic manifest creation. Templates with custom path configurations based on wildcards allow automatic and individual naming conventions and folder structures for different camera formats.

File metadata (such as file names and size information) as well as all file locations are stored locally but are also available in ShotHub. As a plus, camera metadata extraction and thumbnail creation are performed automatically “on the fly” while offloading media to backup volumes.

Flexible and Fast Transcoding

Dailies and Proxy Creation on Set.

Original camera footage (OCF) formats are often too data-heavy to be passed around for viewing and editing, so transcoding them to better-suited formats becomes essential. Proxy formats for editing are usually created from recorded footage (OCF) to ensure that the editing room works with material of which a high-quality equivalent doubtlessly exists among the OCF material.

Before dailies can be transcoded, a range of information needs to be brought together. Pomfort’s Distributed Production Library is best suited to syncing imported audio from audio recorders, matching looks from live grading, and adding slate information for burn-ins. Each of these activities can be done on different workstations on set, and the information is synchronized with ShotHub’s library sync. That enables flexible setups on set and even enables truly distributed workflows between set and facility.

The created dailies are also managed in Pomfort’s Distributed Production Library for further distribution to hard drives, dailies platforms, and cloud destinations.

Organized Handover

All Tools for the Daily Packaging of Production Data.

Creating a daily package of media and project information for handover to the facility is one of the main responsibilities of the DIT or data management person on set. A broad range of material is typically collected, such as OCF and proxies, custom reports, and metadata files for third-party applications.

Being on location during shooting allows the DIT to ensure completeness and integrity of all information, even in organizationally challenging situations. Inconsistencies (for example, in naming scenes or clips) can be resolved in communication with team members and other departments directly on set.

Pomfort’s Distributed Production Library supports the packaging efforts by automatically collecting as much information as possible during data management (i.e., when creating backups), while also allowing editing and extending information as needed. Pomfort extends classic drive-based handover from set to post with a secure and access-managed cloud system for web and API access, as well as data-sharing via unique ShotIDs.

All Formats and Standards

Supporting Cameras, Formats, and Devices.

During production, many different systems need to work together. Despite some efforts for standardization, each manufacturer comes with its own format flavors, naming convention, and taxonomy for metadata.

With years of experience in on-set workflows, Pomfort’s Distributed Production Library not only stores and manages each manufacturer’s data but also merges and consolidates the information in a production-wide repository model for unified grouping, browsing, and searching.

Pomfort meets all professional camera systems with full metadata support, including several lens protocols, RAW and compressed formats of various codecs, and containers from HD to 8K. It imports and exports look formats such as cube 3D LUTs, ASC CDL, and AMF+CLF, implements a range of standardized and proprietary color pipelines, and interfaces with a wide range of additional devices, such as “LUT boxes”, monitors, video routers, I/O devices, and grading panels.

Implement the Distributed Production Library

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Image credits: Thanks to Christiaan van der Knoop and Stefan Weßling for providing us with images of their DIT carts.