Apache Customer Story

Headshot of Luis Amaya from Apache

“It’s [MASV] the most straightforward and user-friendly option in the market.”

– Luis Amaya, Color/Finishing Producer, Apache

Challenges

⭕️  Receiving terabytes of RAW media from cinematic cameras (ARRI, RED, Blackmagic, etc.).

⭕️  Quickly transferring 4K+ footage — in high-resolution file formats such as DPX and EPX — to clients and teammates.

⭕️  Coordinating files between third-party VFX companies, animation crews, and graphics departments.

⭕️  Exorbitant upload, download, and storage costs associated with Aspera’s pricing model.

Solutions

✅  Create a MASV Portal, share its upload link, and receive large files from contributors to a predetermined destination.

✅  Deliver files of any size, at max speed, across MASV’s network of 150+ global data centres.

✅  Create an unlimited number of Portals for every project and vendor — and brand it accordingly to stay organized.

✅  Cut down on costs with MASV flat fee of $0.25 for every GB downloaded; uploads are free.

Who is Apache?

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Apache is a Dolby-certified color and finishing house for TV, film, advertising, and streaming content. Founded in 2014 on Hollywood’s doorstep in Santa Monica, CA, Apache works with HBO, Netflix, Hulu, Apple TV, Amazon, and other clients on blue-chip projects such as McCartney 3, 2, 1; Neymar: The Perfect Chaos; Come From Away; and Jazz Fest: A New Orleans Story.

Luis Amaya is a color/finishing producer at Apache and a big MASV user. Coloring and finishing work is highly detail-oriented. In order to see the full scope of colors and get accurate picture detail, Amaya needs the highest resolution files possible to do his best work. This means he deals with crazy huge video files.

Crazy Big Files? No Sweat.

Get started with MASV and send up to 5 TB with a single file — fast.

Moving Terabytes Every Day

Because Apache often works with RAW media from cinematic cameras by ARRI, RED, Blackmagic, and other high-end manufacturers, staff are accustomed to working with big files ranging from 200GB to a full terabyte. Apache typically uses 16-bit Digital Picture Exchange (DPX) and EXR codecs on 4K, 6K, or 8K footage.

Since Apache is often the final set of eyes on important projects before conforming and delivering to some of the world’s largest content providers, Amaya and his colleagues also often transfer full episodes of truly gargantuan sizes — typically between 1.5 and 3.5TB.

Saying Goodbye to Aspera 👋

The company previously used Aspera for large file transfers but wasn’t satisfied with the latter’s payment model, high prices, and lack of flexibility. Many clients and partners also found Aspera challenging to use.

“We want to make it as simple as possible for them,” Amaya explains. Because he works on long-form projects often for months at a time, the flexibility to send or receive files and leave them on the cloud indefinitely — in case they need downloading again — is crucial.

But Apache couldn’t do this with Aspera, at least without incurring significant fees.

“Aspera charges you to upload. They charge you to download. And they charge you for the time that your file is sitting on the cloud,” he explains. “That’s very, very unfortunate.”

Put simply, Apache’s previous large file transfer solution wasn’t getting it done. That’s when Amaya and a colleague looked around for Aspera alternatives and found MASV.

Make the Switch to MASV

Enterprise file transfer without the cost and complexity of those other guys.

Apache’s *New* MASV Workflow

Apache immediately implemented MASV Portals into the file transfer side of its color grading and finishing workflows. Because the company uses a separate MASV Portal for each client, each Portal is customized with the clients’ branding and colors. “Our clients love that,” Amaya says.

MASV Portals have now become a key cog in the color and finishing house’s main workflows:

  • Sending finished footage to clients for review (often full episodes several TBs in size)
  • Sending and receiving graded visual effects (VFX) shots to and from VFX partners (usually several hundred GBs in size)
  • Importing the above files into DaVinci Resolve, Frame.io, and InterDubs for manipulation, management, and viewing

Apache works with multiple VFX companies, animation crews, and graphics departments and now receives content from all of them via MASV Portals. 

To receive files, Amaya and his colleagues at Apache need to share their unique Portal link with whomever they choose; the sender, on their end, drags the file into the Portal and the transfer begins. Files added to MASV are automatically sent once uploaded.

“We’ve all had times where we’re working long hours, it’s late at night, and everything’s ready to be sent out — but the upload could range anywhere from an hour to three hours,” Amaya says.

“In those cases, somebody at home would have to remember to hit send. We don’t have to do that anymore because it automatically sends the files to recipients once it has successfully uploaded.”

MASV: Adding Value for Apache at Every Step

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Thanks to MASV’s clean and simple interface, Amaya says sending large files to clients and partners is now as simple as sending an email. But that’s not the only benefit Apache has experienced since switching to MASV:

Ease of Use

“It’s the most straightforward and user-friendly option in the market,” explains Amaya. “Our goal is to make things as easy as possible for our partners and clients, and MASV is one of the best ways of making this happen.”

Fast File Transfers

Because Apache works with such huge files it’s imperative for its file transfer workflow to be as fast as possible without sacrificing reliability. “MASV uploads at extremely fast speeds – especially for our facility,” Amaya says.

Flexible Storage

Apache sometimes leaves uploaded files on the cloud for months at a time, and MASV Extended Storage provides that flexibility without any hassles. Amaya says he’s needed some uploaded files to stay available in MASV for nearly a year.

Easy Pricing

MASV users pay $0.25.GB for downloads. All uploads are free. Amaya says that’s pretty great. “It’s incredible for us,” he says, adding that this was a big reason for making the switch to MASV.

“There could be an error in the file but once it gets uploaded using other platforms, you get billed for it. With MASV, if we recognize an error, we can tell our partners to ignore the file and we don’t get billed.”

Remote Collaboration

Amaya says MASV’s cloud-based technology has also helped when transferring to remote staff, clients, or partners, because it’s just as easy to send files to remote locations as it is across the office. 

“It’s not just beneficial to our clients – it’s also beneficial to our partners and vendors,” he says.

“One of the benefits of our autonomy is that we can make choices that benefit our clients in the most positive way. And MASV is one of those choices.”

“MASV is file transfer without all the stuff that makes file transfer painful.”

Apache is just one of the many post-production firms who have moved away from unnecessarily complex and outdated file transfer solutions and made the switch to MASV. One such example is the globe-trotting crew over at Curiosity Stream. Known for their factual and educational content, Curiosity Stream made the smart decision to jump ship to MASV for its simplicity, ease of use, and ability to send large files to post teams — often from remote on-set locations. 🌎

Read our interview with Curiosity Stream’s VP of Content Operations, Michael Smith and Director of Post Production, Alan Saunders about their experience with MASV.

Ready for hassle-free file transfer? Get started with MASV below and receive 100 GB on us. 👇

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