Smoke & Mirrors Deploys Spectra Logic T950 Tape Library to Manage More than Seven Petabytes of Data Globally

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Spectra Logic solution helps global visual effects and post-production service provider maintain 24/7 access to vast amounts of uncompressed data

BRACKNELL, UK— 13th September 2016 — Spectra Logic, the deep storage experts, today announced that UK-based visual effects and post-production company, Smoke & Mirrors, has deployed a Spectra® T950 Tape Library with eight LTO-6 drives and one expansion chassis to store upwards of seven petabytes of database, video, images and other data. The Spectra T950 library, which is designed to meet stringent requirements for data integrity, security and reliability, is perfectly suited to Smoke & Mirrors’ need for fast online storage and high capacity.

With approximately 300 employees dispersed globally between its offices in London, New York, Chennai, Sao Paulo, Bangkok and Shanghai, Smoke & Mirrors provides visual effects and post-production services for the advertising, film and music video industries. The company requires 24/7 data access with live jobs easily expanding to seven terabytes of uncompressed data each and as much as 150 terabytes per client.

When looking to refresh its legacy infrastructure, Smoke & Mirrors’ IT team had identified several key criteria including: reduced operational costs and reduced administration time, ease of sharing and access to data, scalability and high performance. Based in London’s Soho office where space is confined, density and storage footprint were other key considerations. Furthermore, Smoke & Mirrors wanted to identify a vendor that was familiar with the nuances of the media and entertainment industry and would provide continual support, even after the initial deployment.

The Spectra Logic T950 library reduces staff involvement significantly, offers affordable scalability and high throughput, and delivers the best total cost of ownership of any tape solution. It was perfectly suited to deliver the performance increase needed and provide a higher number of tapes in a denser footprint. More than that, the solution could be deployed while Smoke & Mirrors upgraded its IBM® Spectrum Protect™ archiving system.

“After just a few discussions it was clear that Spectra Logic would be able to meet our needs, and since working together, the solution has significantly exceeded our expectations. Not only have we seen a marked reduction in administration times and costs with the T950, we are now able to access our data more quickly and are much more confident that it is safe. Spectra Logic demonstrated that its team has a granular understanding of our specific requirements and understands this sector as a storage vendor,” said George Cook, Head of Engineering at Smoke & Mirrors.

“Many of our customers in the media and entertainment space rely heavily on digital archives and Spectra’s focus on this market enables us to provide solutions that meet their unique needs,” said Brian Grainger, CSO at Spectra Logic. “Smoke & Mirrors wanted a no-compromise solution that would allow its team to achieve maximum productivity without unnecessary costs. I’m thrilled to say that, once again, we delivered.”

Following the installation of their Spectra Logic T950 tape library, the Smoke & Mirrors team realised several improvements within their data centre, and are now looking to expand use of the solution across its other locations around the world. Read more about the Smoke & Mirrors deployment in this Spectra Logic customer case study.