Allen Campbell, video coordinator for US Major League Baseball’s Arizona Diamondbacks, used to worry about which files he would have to delete from his hard drives just to make room for more content.
Since the team switched to Seagate storage products shortly before the 2011 season, Mr Campbell has much more freedom and flexibility. The team uses several BlackArmor® Network Attached Storage (NAS) solutions from Seagate, along with a number of the Company’s GoFlex™ Ultra-portable hard drives.
Mr Campbell now travels with a 6TB BlackArmor NAS 220. That system gives him ample capacity for every one of the team’s games from the 2010 season, along with each game from spring training and the current season. The D-backs also have another seven BlackArmor NAS units for each of their minor-league teams.
“Last year, we were using a 2TB external drive (from another storage company),” says Campbell, 33, who has been with the club since the 2000 season. “I was always clearing out files before I could add new ones. So much of our video content is HD now, which really eats up a lot of storage space. It was just a constant management process. With Seagate’s NAS product, it’s just a case of ‘set it and forget it’. I have just been adding whatever I need, as opposed to deleting content. In terms of workflow, it has definitely speeded things up for me.”
Seagate’s BlackArmor NAS 220 delivers centralised network storage, media streaming and data backup for up to 20 PCs. It also features US-government-grade hardware encryption to protect files, along with eSATA and USB ports for plugging in external drives.
Meanwhile, the GoFlex Ultra-portable drives’ interface cables can be switched to USB 3.0, eSATA or FireWire 800 for transferring large HD video files at speeds up to 10 times faster than USB 2.0.
“I use a PC for writing data to BlackArmor and I have three other computers that are attached to the network for watching videos,” Mr Campbell explains. “Players and coaches sit down and watch videos to prepare for a particular Giants pitcher or hitter, for example. I can also connect one of our 1TB GoFlex Ultra-portable drives to the BlackArmor so that our coaches can watch videos on a plane or in their hotel room, using their laptops.”
Like any savvy road warrior, Mr Campbell always travels light — which includes the number of tech tools he carries along.
“Not every Major League ballpark is the same when it comes to their video facilities,” he says. “Some ballparks have spacious facilities and some are pretty cramped. We want to minimise the amount of equipment we take with us. Even though it is a server, the BlackArmor is still compact enough to fit into my travel case, along with the rest of our external drives. It is very portable and that is equally important to us.”
That is the kind of convenience and flexibility that the Arizona Diamondbacks — and several other sports teams — value in their technology solutions. Among the other pro franchises using Seagate storage products: Major League Baseball’s Colorado Rockies, Major League Soccer’s Vancouver Whitecaps and the National Hockey League’s San Jose Sharks. —By Steve Pipe