Telestream's recently updated release of Episode Pro offers a fast and powerful method for encoding mobile TV content on a single computer, or across several. With support for just about every mobile and streaming format including 3GPP, 3GPP2, MP4, Windows Media 9, MP4, H.264, MPEG-4 and AAC, the software is designed to make creating mobile content an easy drag-and-drop affair.
The software runs on a PC (from XP to Windows 7) or on a Mac (10.5 or higher, Lion support is coming soon). The interface is made up of several panels, with the panel on the left showing the various storage devices and hard drives you have. On the top are hundreds of presets for different encoding formats, and on the right are the parameters to tweak and change how the clips are rendered. Down below is the status window, which gives a real-time update of how your clips are being rendered. Actual workflow is very much like a flowchart diagram. You choose a file and drag it over to the middle window, this could be a single file or a batch group of files. Then from above you choose the encoder, this could be any format you can think of, Episode has every major one covered with lots of different presets for mobile options. Finally there is the deployment option, where you can drag in a destination option. It could upload to where you choose or just save direct to your desktop or move to a separate sever or hard drive. Rendering is speedy and you'll see the progress every step of the way. Where Episode shines is how scalable it is. You may start off with a single multicore machine, but as your demands grow you can add additional machines or servers and Episode automatically splits the work and rendering. For industrial high-end needs you can also upgrade to Episode Engine which not only splits the workload it actually can split the files, you could have one large file render down and split the render three ways to say three separate machines. Episode Pro offers lots of options during the render process. You can monitor the renders remotely from any computer and even incorporate event intelligent deployment and notification scripts to ensure you are seeing the results every step of the way.
What separates Episode from other mobile TV encoders is scalability and ease of use. The entire interface is user friendly and easy to use, everything is drag and drop and there is little to no learning curve. Also any company can start off with the basic software running on a single machine and get fast results from a multiprocessor machine. In the event that the need expands, you can easily start distributing the encoding load to multiple machines and pick and choose how much distributed horsepower to utilize. And in the event you need more specific rendering options to scale up, you can always upgrade to Episode Engine and get into rendering distribution at a granular level. The latest version of Episode Pro will work for most any company, and will produce sharp, excellent results for just about any mobile TV production project.
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