August 28, 2008


In the TV commercial production workflow, Aardman Broadcast and Commercials will first use the Sledgehammer HD!O to play out HD 4:2:2 still frames in the .DPX image sequence format, and will create SD proxies by applying Sledgehammer's on-the-fly image format conversion and cropping/resizing tools. The proxies will be used by Final Cut Pro editors for offline. Sledgehammer HD!O will then EDL conform the shots using the original HD .DPX files.

Ian Fleming, head of production technology at Aardman Animations, says the studio has found efficiencies using its two other HD!O systems in its production workflow for television series, including that for the popular program Wallace & Grommit. He estimates that its use in the commercial pipeline will result in savings of 25 to 30 percent in time spent rendering and performing other tasks.

 XFTX, a Maximum Throughput ( reseller based in London, is providing sales and integration support for the purchase. The new Sledgehammer HD!O and its built-in MAXmedia application will be used at several stages of the stop frame animation production process, multi-tasking as a DDR playout system, high-performance NAS file server for edit bays, as well as a format conversion, and media processing and assembly solution. Sledgehammer HD!O offers SD, HD, and 2K film resolutions for the realtime capture of uncompressed SD or HD video at 8-bit,10-bit or 12-bit color depth.