Large file transfer alternative

Signiant vs Aspera

Compare IBM Aspera and Signiant Media Shuttle — and discover why many have already chosen MASV as a faster and more reliable alternative.

Stacked logos for Signiant Media Shuttle and IBM Aspera

Signiant vs. Aspera: Transfer Speed (Self-Hosted vs Cloud-Based)

Self-hosted file sharing products such as IBM Aspera, Signiant Media Shuttle, and FileCatalyst can offer faster transfer speeds than cloud-based file transfer, especially when sharing files internally and over short distances. This is largely thanks to the direct path between the sender and receiver over a point-to-point network.

However, cloud-based file sharing makes much more sense for:

  • Transferring large media files externally (which is commonplace for post-production workflows).
  • Organizations without the resources to develop and scale complex self-hosted environments.

Cloud-based file transfer services are built to be accessible and easy to implement. That’s unlike self-hosted systems, which generally are cumbersome and complicated to set up and use, and are more time-consuming when onboarding new users.


Cloud-based file-sharing platforms are accessible across different browser types and operating systems, and don’t involve frustrating learning curves getting new users up to speed.


Self-hosted systems need near-constant manual patching and updating, but cloud-based large file transfer services patch any vulnerability within minutes for all users and come with enterprise security tools out-of-the-box.


UDP is a connectionless protocol, meaning that if data packets don’t arrive, arrive corrupted, or with other errors, they are not re-sent, leading to reliability issues.

Total Cost of Ownership

Providers like Aspera and Signiant require special software, servers, updates, patches, and ongoing support by IT teams. This brings high startup, maintenance, and training costs.

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Why MASV’s cloud-based file transfer is superior to self-hosted

MASV offers the same speed and performance as Aspera and Signiant, with the ease of modern web-based solutions that run on the cloud:

1. Speed

MASV has custom acceleration technology and access to 300+ global servers to close the gap between sender and recipient and speed up cloud-based delivery.

2. Simplicity

Sending a big file through MASV is as easy as sending an email. You can use a browser or our desktop app for added speed and performance.

3. Reliability

Improvements to cloud and networking technology means cloud-based transfer can now reach or exceed self-hosted transfer speeds with an emphasis on fairness and data integrity.

4. Security

Web technology is always up-to-date against security threats — and MASV brings two-way file encryption, custom security features, and ISO 27001 certification for added protection.

5. Total Cost of Ownership

No IT support or training needed. Just sign-up and start sending large files right away.

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📖 Free Guide: How to Determine the Best File Transfer Tool?

Evaluate UDP-based file transfer and web-based solutions against the five principles of file transfer: Simplicity, speed, reliability, security, and total cost of ownership.

Read the Guide >

Signiant vs Aspera: Pricing

MASV PAYG Signiant Media Shuttle IBM Aspera PAYG IBM Aspera Advanced
$0.25/GB $7,500/year + overages $0.95/GB $10,440/year + overages

What MASV offers:

MASV is just $0.25/GB downloaded. You only pay for the data that gets used. Uploads are free and there is no per-seat pricing. Custom plans are available to suit your needs.

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Signiant vs. Aspera: Security

Both Signiant Media Shuttle and IBM Aspera offer built-in security tools for data transfers, including password protection and encryption both in-flight and at-rest.

Self-hosted file transfer is sometimes attractive to media & entertainment companies because the data is contained in a single physical environment, rather than in the cloud.

But this only provides the illusion of greater security. That’s because by connecting third-party software applications to your system, you’re inviting external (and potentially malicious) code into your infrastructure.

You could add more security measures on the server side, such as a virtual private network (VPN), but this gets expensive quickly and can slow down productivity and file transfer speeds.

What MASV’s secure cloud-based file transfer offers:

  • Certification under ISO 27001 and SOC 2.
  • TLS 1.2 in-flight, AES-256 encryption at-rest.
  • A verification from the Trusted Partner Network (Gold Shield status).
  • Password protection, file expiry, and download limits.
  • File delivery tracking
  • Vulnerability scanning.

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Signiant vs. Aspera: User Experience

Both Signiant and Aspera have straight-forward user interfaces to upload and download files. Both tools require third-parties to have their own account to access files, which is a time-consuming process and confusing for those not familiar with the product.

Aspera offers a browser plugin that needs to be 1) manually installed by the user and 2) maintained by the provider.

What MASV offers:

  • Upload and downloads from any browser on desktop and mobile devices.
  • A free desktop app with added performance, stability, and exclusive features like Multiconnect.
  • The ability to download files or upload to a MASV Portal without an account.
  • A clean and simple drag-and-drop interface.

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Signiant vs. Aspera: Storage

Signiant Media Shuttle customers can connect to their own Amazon S3, Google Cloud, or Microsoft Azure Blob storage, or directly to on-premise storage.

IBM Aspera doesn’t offer storage with its pay-as-you-go plans, but users can buy à la carte storage at a rate of $0.03/GB.

Standard plan subscribers receive 1 TB of cloud object storage. Advanced and Enterprise subscribers receive 10 TB and 25 TB of cloud object storage, respectively.

What MASV offers:

  • Free storage for seven days, no matter the size of the file.
  • Direct integrations with over 15 different cloud storage vendors.
  • Automated delivery into third-party cloud storages.
  • Extended storage for $0.10/GB a month (after the first seven days).

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Signiant vs. Aspera: Automations

Both Signiant and Aspera offer file transfer automations to speed up file delivery workflows.

Signiant Media Shuttle offers automated workflows through its Media Shuttle API. They’re not out-of-the-box and users must rely on a technical resource for development. Third-party applications can be purchased to add automations but they require an SDK.

IBM Aspera’s automations are available in the Advanced and Enterprise plans. These automations are also limited to either five (for Advanced subscribers) or 10 concurrent workflow jobs.

What MASV offers:

  • Free automation features for all users.
  • Upload, download, and send to cloud automations.
  • The ability to create as many automations as you need at no extra cost.
  • A simple interface to create automations without engineering support.

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Signiant vs. Aspera: Customer Service

Signiant Media Shuttle support is accessible through a searchable help centre, along with phone and email support for admin and enterprise users.

IBM Aspera support is a top complaint among users. It requires users to access self-serve portal and sift through mounds of support documentation. The transfer client and Aspera’s desktop application must be fully installed for users to access the customer support portal.

What MASV offers:

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Compare Media Shuttle vs. Aspera vs. MASV

Feature MASV  Signiant Aspera PAYG Aspera Advanced
Pricing $0.25/GB $7,500/year $0.95/GB $10,440/year
Package limit No limit No limit No limit 6 TB/year
Password protection
Set file expiry date
Set download limits
Configure user roles & permissions
Receive downloads without an account
Upload to Portal without an account
No charge to create account
Send files to email ✅ * ✅ * ✅ *
Custom metadata forms
Desktop app ✅ ** ✅ ** ✅ **
Cloud Storage delivery
Out-of-the-box integrations
Unlimited file transfer automations
Custom Portal branding
Storage included $0.10/GB No storage $0.03/GB 10 TB
Live chat support
Free trial sign-up

*Email recipients require an account.

**Desktop app required.

MASV: A Better Alternative to Signiant and Aspera

Able to Handle Large Files

Share file packages of unlimited size and individual files of up to 15 TB.

Incredibly Fast

File acceleration on a global scale; MASV supports transfers up to 10Gbps entirely over the cloud.

Easy to Use (For Everyone)

No IT set-up or staff training required. A clean, drag-and-drop interface. Available on any browser.

No Barriers to Collaboration

Create Teams and invite as many members as you need. We charge per Team not per user.

Large File Sharing For Less

Only pay for what you use at $0.25/GB downloaded — or buy data in bulk at a reduced rate.

Secure by Design

MASV is built from the ground up with a layered security approach baked right into the solution.

Amazing Workflow Features

Branded upload portals, cloud integrations, automations, and more!


Create cloud integrations, set-up automations, integrate with NAS, and more with our file transfer API.

24-7 Support

We’re always available on our live customer support chat and 24/7 email support if you have questions.

Customers Who Switched to MASV

Hear stories from those who made the switch from Media Shuttle and Aspera to MASV.

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When Aspera’s upload, download, and storage costs grew too expensive, Apache said goodbye – and hello to MASV.

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Smart Post Atlanta

Learn how Smart Post Atlanta replaced its expensive, on-premises Aspera and Signiant instances with MASV web-based file transfer.

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Sound Lounge

Get the inside track on why this sound studio ditched Aspera for a cheaper, easier alternative in MASV.

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Simple DCP

Learn why Simple DCP chose MASV after dealing with endless technical issues with other providers.

Make the Switch to MASV

Enjoy enterprise-grade file transfer without long sales cycles and complex IT environments.