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Gold Medal Storage: Seagate To Provide Nearly Half A Million Gigabytes Of Storage For NBC’s 2008 Olympic Games Coverage


Seagate’s Barracuda® ES hard drives to power Omneon’s MediaGrid active storage enabling NBC’s complete coverage of the Beijing Olympics

SCOTTS VALLEY, Calif.-The Seagate® Barracuda® ES Series has been selected as the hard drive of choice for the Omneon MediaDeck™ media servers and MediaGrid™ active storage systems that will enable NBC’s coverage of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, to be held August 8-24. The media servers and storage systems will allow NBC to produce an unprecedented 3,600 hours of coverage during the Beijing Olympic Games – a three-fold increase over the coverage during the 2004 Athens Olympic Games.

Picture this: A gymnast leaps onto the balance beam. By the time she makes a dismount, NBC’s broadcast footage has already been stored on the Seagate Barracuda ES hard drive in Omneon’s Beijing MediaGrid active storage system, traveled 6,350 miles to the New York MediaGrid active storage system, processed, and quickly transmitted as compelling coverage on television and

The innovative workflow begins in China with 20 MediaDeck servers, powered by the Barracuda ES hard drives, which are used to digitize and ingest HD feeds. Each MediaDeck server contains both high-resolution and low-resolution codecs to simultaneously create both full-resolution IMX or XDCAM HD files and low-resolution proxy files of all recordings. The resulting files are actively transferred, while still being recorded, to the MediaGrid active storage system. Then, using Omneon’s ProCast CDN™ content distribution system, the proxies are transferred thousands of miles from the MediaGrid active storage system in Beijing to a second MediaGrid storage system in New York, again powered by Seagate Barracuda ES hard drives, where producers can browse, view, and edit the files.

“NBC needs to capture every second of every competition at multiple venues in China, quickly turning them into dynamic programming for television and Internet broadcasting – nothing can fall through the cracks,” said Bill Schilling, marketing director at Seagate. “We welcomed the opportunity to work with Omneon to support NBC for its Olympics coverage. Omneon is the market leader for developing storage solutions for broadcast video, which is becoming more prevalent via the Web, especially for hugely popular sporting events like the Olympics.”

“Because the workflow must be seamless and the nature of the programming is so significant, we decided to use Seagate’s enterprise hard drives, which are the best fit for our needs in terms of reliability, best-in-class design and unrivaled performance,” said Geoff Stedman, SVP products and markets at Omneon.

Broadcast coverage of the Beijing Olympics will begin on August 8 along with coverage via the web at


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