on February 07, 2014 The Future Of Media Workflow Educational

5 Essential Collaboration Tools For Video Makers

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studio-setCollaboration tools are often an afterthought when planning for a production. However the collaboration tools you use (or don't use) can make the difference between a friction free production, and a production with sleepless nights and budget overruns. Here are a few tools that will help you collaborate efficiently, and minimize unnecessary delays

1. Cinesync

Cinesync is the gold standard for real-time synchronized video review. Film, TV and advertising production teams have been using Cinesync for years now to run live review sessions with their directors or VFX teams who might be in another city or another continent. The synchronized playback lets you be sure that your team in London on the other end of the phone line is watching the exact same frame as you, with the same color representation. Live markup tools help you get your point across, and see your team's input as they are providing it. Cinesync runs from $99/month through $5000/month depending on the number of users and features you need. Check out Cinesync.

2. Join.me

Sometimes you just have to get on a conference call with a few people to solve a production problem. As a rule, conference call and screen sharing tools are a royal pain in the A. We've all wasted countless frustrating minutes of our lives waiting for everyone to get on a call and get their audio settings right. Not many conference call tools are nice to use or work particularly well. That's why we were delighted when we came across Join.me, a free screen sharing and online meeting tool that is easy to use, and seems to work quite well. Check out Join.me.

3. Adobe Prelude

For a mere $20/month you can get one of the nicest logging and rough cut tools on the market. There has never been a faster way to mark up video and extract subclips. Prelude runs beautifully on an average laptop, and is simple to learn for anyone that has worked with video editing tools. Plus it creates annotation metadata in the Adobe XMP format, so any XMP-compliant applications like MediaSilo can read the metadata. You can download Prelude from Adobe Creative Cloud.

4. Telestream Episode

Sending and reviewing raw video files straight out of a camera is rarely a good idea. Files sizes can be massive, and your reviewers may not have the software to open the files. To share video with everyone who needs to see it, you often need to encode a compressed version of the video on set. This also saves time when uploading to collaboration platforms like MediaSilo. This is where Telestream Episode can help. Episode installs on any desktop computer, and can encode video to a wide range of video formats and specs. Check out Episode.

5. Speedtest.net

To collaborate with folks who are in another location or city, you may need them to download or stream video. Bandwidth issues can make this difficult, especially if your collaborator isn't the most technical adept. You can make sure that their connection is healthy by asking them to run a simple bandwidth test using Speedtest.net.

And of course, MediaSilo:

MediaSilo is the linchpin of your production collaboration toolkit. It gives your team a place to store all your video, send dailies, and garner timecoded feedback. MediaSilo automatically creates high quality streaming previews of all your video, making sharing and review simple. With bullet-proof security, you can be sure your footage and assets never get into the wrong hands.

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