Digital Media Asset Management and Kyno

February 28, 2019

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 What is Media Asset Management? I'm glad you asked. Media Asset Managers allow you to sort through your footage quickly and easily so that you can find the shots that you need when you need them. Now that may not seem like something worth throwing a lot of money at until you have a lot of footage and you have a lot of people on your team.


Here at LumaForge we actually started to run into that ourselves. We started expanding our video team but I was the only one who knew where all of the various footage was because I shot a lot of it and edited a lot of it. As soon as we started adding other people it became impractical for me to tell them exactly where each and every shot was that they might possibly need for the projects they were working on. So we actually started looking for a MAM ourselves. One of the big things we found was that most MAMs are really difficult to install and really difficult to get set up. In fact most of the time you needed either an entire computer gone or you're using some of the capabilities of your Jellyfish now dedicated to just keeping a database of where all of your files are.


What we found though was there is one piece of software that uses indexing as opposed to a database which means that, much like Spotlight on a Mac, you've got the ability to search things because there's this set of invisible files alongside your footage that have information about the footage itself. All you have to do with this piece of software is install it, activate it, and now you can start tagging, logging, and searching on any computer that happens to have this piece of software. What is this piece of software? Kyno from Lesspain Software. We have become really big fans of Kyno, not only because it makes the install and set up process extremely easy, but also because it makes tagging and searching through your footage extremely versatile as well.

So if I know that I need to find some RED footage that was shot at 2997, I can do that out of the box. I don't have to do any logging to be able to find that. What I really love about Kyno is the fact that I can go in and tag things like shot, take, and reel, but I can also add my own tags, kind of like finder tags. As I add those tags other users, who are connected to the Jellyfish, can start to see those tags as they start entering tags on their end. They can auto-complete so that we're all on the same page and we aren't duplicating keywords that are essentially the same thing.


Beyond just using tags you also have the ability to create sub clips. You can set in and out points around a very specific topic. This is helpful, especially in talking heads or if you're working with a newsreel and you need to break things down into smaller pieces because you can't tell just by looking at the thumbnail what a piece of footage is. For example, when I'm talking about sub clips we might start an end point at the beginning of this portion and then whenever I stop talking about sub clips we set an out point and then we hit S to create a sub clip to then designate the portion of the talking head where I am talking about sub clips. And now of we go into Kyno later, we can search for sub clips and I can find the sub clip about sup clips. Very meta, I know.


The really super powerful thing about all of this is that as soon as I want to take this footage and bring it into Final Cut, Premiere or Resolve, I can do that and I'm able to pull that meta-data along with my footage. That means I can right-click on a batch of clips, say Send to Final Cut Pro X and now my sub clips come in as keyword ranges, my tags come as keyword ranges, and all that stuff like scenes, shot and take all shows up inside of Final Cut. The same thing happens with Premiere, except that I don't really get tags, but my sub clips come in as ranged markers. Same thing happens whenever I bring footage over into Resolve. What about you? We really love Kyno, is there a Media Asset Manager out there that you love? Why do you love it? Let us know in the comments below.