Fireman Sam animation studio Hibbert Ralph Animation (HRA) has increased the amount of central storage at its D’Arblay Street facility as it looks to better deal with an increased workload and the move to HD.


The move sees an original fibre channel SAN replaced with 24 terabytes of Isilon IQ clustered storage, supplied and supported by reseller Root6.

The increased capacity will help HRA’s Final Cut Pro editors, especially on its long-form TV projects.

Head of technical operations Neil Marsden said: “We have a highly scripted workflow and we needed a scalable solution that could cope with this, integrate with our Unix servers and, most importantly, be implemented as invisibly as possible. That’s quite a complex task.

“We work in uncompressed HD in the Final Cut suites and use two terabit partitions on the current network for commercials work which is perfectly satisfactory but HRTV, our longer-form TV arm, required greater capacity. Beside the almost infinitely scalable volume, the Isilon Cluster will also give us faster throughput with 10Ge performance.”

HRA and HRTV make TV and cinema commercials, long-form TV, idents, logos, web animations and promos. TV credits include Fireman Sam, Tractor Tom and Stressed Eric.