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Tutorial: Avid NEXIS | PRO With axle Starter Media Management

Art of the Cut author Steve Hullfish demos how to use axle Starter for media management and metadata-enhanced proxy screening with Avid NEXIS | PRO.

Accessing the Media

Once it's created, once you've pointed to the location, axle immediately begins cataloging the footage and media at that location. This will start populating immediately, but it will take a while. For video, it's creating scrubbable H.264 proxies of every piece of media.

This is one of the reasons you want the computer doing this to be doing little else but Axle. When the proxies are made, you can access them from the server computer, or any computer, or even a smart phone that has a web browser. Just enter the IP address of the server and /axleweb into a browser, and you'll connect. Then enter the user and password and you'll be seeing the contents of a volume, Avid NEXIS | PRO, or folder anywhere with the ability to approve shots, comment on them, and add metadata. Another really cool thing is that even people without access to axle can easily see files by sending them an email link that connects straight to the axle server, so you don't have to upload videos to Dropbox, or Vimeo, or YouTube for clients to look at shots.

Archiving Abilities

The link looks just like the axle interface and there's no exporting, or converting, or uploading necessary. To me, that's killer. Another feature I really like is the archiving abilities. Right from the axle UI, you can archive specific shots or entire groups of shots to a pre-determined location, another drive, an LTO backup, the Cloud, whatever. Then delete the local media, but axle will still maintain the proxies and metadata as if it was live, giving you this little icon to show that it's really offline. With the click of a button, you can restore that media back because axle remembers where it was stored and brings the file back.

Some of this remote access stuff made me a little bit nervous, but there are clear settings that allowed the administrator to limit user access to specific functions, so your media is always safe. In today's media environment, small shops have to compete with the big boys and try to get more done with less. Avid NEXIS | PRO and axle are a great step in that direction, delivering high-end functionality for a small-shop price. I never thought Avid NEXIS | PRO would be a solution that my company could use. It's really affordable. With its wealth of functions, I can't imagine life without it.

Thanks to our sponsor,, where you can purchase Avid Media Composer, Avid NEXIS | PRO, and axle products.

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The Avid NEXIS | PRO has all the features that Avid's big NEXIS shared storage solutions have, but scaled down for producers with smaller shops but the same need for reliability and sharing functionality that makes NEXIS popular with bigger studios.