Sandcastle Studios

Move Into HD Video Editing Through Digistor

Sandcastle Studios are renowned for providing music and sound for film, TV and commercials. Recent projects include The Combination, Packed To The Rafters and Accidents Happen, as well as numerous award winning TV commercials.

In 2008, Chris Cudlipp, Principal of Sandcastle Studios, decided that it was time to expand into picture post. Chris wanted to offer producers and directors a complete end-to-end creative post service; everything needed for picture, sound and music all under one roof.

“I was thinking of those studios in the old days that could do everything in one place, where everyone worked together,” says Chris. “I wanted to provide something like that: a rushes-to-deliveries post service that was built around top-class creative talent.”

Extraordinary Team

Chris brought together three of the most talented players in these fields in Australia: Dave Birrell, Peter Miller and Norman Parkhill. 

“They’re an extraordinary team,” says Chris, “three of the best in picture, sound and music. And having the best people is a great thing,” he adds, “but to be as good as they can be, they need the best tools. When I asked Dave what technology he wanted to be the hub of our new HD picture editing capability, he recommended Avid and that we go to Digistor.”

David Birrell with new Avid editing facility

Total Solution Specialists

Digistor call themselves the Total Solution Specialists, and a total solution was exactly what Chris was after.

“Anyone who’s experienced the horrible niggly issues of matching sound to video knows how tricky it can be,” says Chris. “We wanted a system that was fully integrated so the creative process was never held up by incompatibility issues. Digistor told us that they are ‘solution-agnostic’ – they’ll recommend whatever combination of systems provides the best solution. That’s what we wanted.” 

After analysing Sandcastle’s existing equipment and their requirements, Digistor supplied and installed an Avid Media Composer Nitris DX edit suite. They supplied the Avid equipment, Behringer outboard audio equipment and upgrades to the existing Mac Pro.

“Digistor were terrific. They gave us a range of options, got us the best gear on the market at a good price and helped install it. Digistor’s experience, their competitive pricing and their support were invaluable in getting our video editing suites up and running. As everyone in this industry knows, equipment failure can really kill you, and we’ve had no down-time since Digistor put the systems in.”

Fully Integrated with Pro-Tools

Fully-integrated with Pro-Tools, the Avid systems give Sandcastle a complete composing, recording, picture editing, sound-post and mixing solution in one place.

“With the Avid gear, we can take in all film and HD formats, including RED and Genesis, and stay in HD throughout the whole editing process,” says Chris. “We have five suites, so while someone is cutting in one suite we can be sending over musical ideas. Everything Digistor put in talks to our decks, so once the picture locks we can switch over seamlessly to sound post and mix in 5.1. Importing, exporting and managing data is all easy. It’s a fantastic system.”