Tuesday, August 2nd, 2011 Posted by Jim Thacker

Thinware unveils online asset-management system

Thinware Media has launched StudioCAP, a new cloud-based asset-management system aimed at CG work.

The system offers all the usual benefits of services over software (no configuration, no maintenance), although prices “as low as $145 per user per month” don’t sound that low to us, given that the widely used Shotgun asset-management system can cost just $49 per user per month for a full-size studio.

Update: we contacted Thinware, who said that the pricing reflects the difference between an asset tracker and a full check-in, check-out asset-management system, commenting that if Shotgun is “a fancy Excel spreadsheet”, StudioCAP is “like having an accounting spread sheet software that is actually tied into your bank account. You’re not ‘saying’ what the status of your money is, your actually ‘seeing’ it.”

Thinware Media Ltd (Thinware), an established animation industry leader based in Vancouver, B.C., today launched StudioCAP (CAP=Computer Aided Production), a completely new workflow automation and asset management solution for animation studios. This new cloud-based system enables studios to more efficiently store, track, and move 2D and 3D CGI (computer generated image) assets through the creation process without having to install and manage a costly IT infrastructure to do so. StudioCAP is available immediately for site evaluation and trial.

The StudioCAP process was developed in a real-world production environment by Mark Rocchio, CEO of Thinware Media, while creating thousands of hours of high-quality animation projects. StudioCAP eliminates and/or automates many expensive and time consuming manual processes, improves control of digital assets, and features built-in project planning and budgeting. Once created, studios can search for assets, reuse them as production sees fit, or re-purpose them for marketing, merchandizing, and other revenue streams.

StudioCAP combines asset management with a number of project management and communication features to move assets more efficiently through the creative process. Studios can assign user roles and staffing levels, send messages about asset status, set tasks, automate tasks such as rendering, and define milestones, timelines and deliverables. StudioCAP can also manage project budgets and tie asset creation to asset costs with insightful reports. Collectively, these features simplify asset creation and the management of highly complex productions.

As a completely Web-based solution, StudioCAP is HTML 5 compliant, supports many mobile devices, and does not require studios to install software or procure, configure, and manage hardware. Unlike other asset management solutions on the market, StudioCAP is billed like a utility, so studios only pay for what they use—with introductory prices starting as low as $145.00 per-user, per month. This unique combination makes it easier and more flexible for studios to get started, and far more cost-effective to maintain.

“We developed StudioCAP because there was no other asset management system on the market capable of helping us produce animations faster and more cost effectively,” said Mark Rocchio, CEO of Thinware Media. “Most asset management systems are either too complicated, too lacking in features, or require some sort of costly infrastructure set-up. StudioCAP addresses all of those issues with a feature-rich system that is flexible, simple to set up and use, and more competitively priced to operate than other asset management products available now,” added Rocchio.

Visit the Thinware Media site