Flame In The Cloud

Hello! Has anyone had any experience working with a flame in the cloud. I had a little experience testing one. But now I’m looking for a company that handles all the setup so that I can just work. Any leads for where to go? Thanks in advance!

Hey hey. We did a pretty in-depth Logik Live with Gunpowder.tech earlier this year. High recommend Tom and Tom. info@gunpowder.tech. Pretty much any of the studios that use cloud Flames have partnered somehow with these guys so they are pretty much the best around.

Let 'em know we sent ya!

Randy

Thanks! I actually did send them an email already but never heard back. So I will reach out again and specifically mention the Logik group. Thanks for the rec!

Big question is why? All I’ve heard is that FiC is slower, less interactive and more expensive. I don’t get it.

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Just look up some of the big companies that host on aws and clearly they have run the numbers and decided it was a good choice for them, I think its a sign of the times, while it might not be totally there yet its not going to be much longer before its a better expeince with less engineering and hardware costs which is probably why Netflix, samsung , bmw etc etc all choose to host their software on aws as well.

@Mattj678 Please report back and let us know how the experience was, how long it took to setup and install all the necessary tools and what kind of costs you were looking at , generally curious to see how it goes for you.

I think it depends on what you are comparing it to. Buying a system…renting one?

What if you just have a few shots for a client and want to spin up a flame for a day or two? What if that shot is worse than I thought and I want to spin up another system to get some help? I see this as the beauty of flame in the cloud.

I’m sure if the gig I’m looking at will pan out. But it’s giving me an opportunity to research this cool stuff. Either way I’ll let the group know what I learn! Thanks!!

How much does the Flex subscription change the calculus there? If you have a spare Mac (most of us do) you can spin up a local instance pretty quick for $60/day and only play for days you’re using it.

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the good part about the flame in the cloud is that you can essentially have a 5 year old laptop and still have an amazing machine that you just use for a week thus making it much more financially viable for a lot of people for short term jobs. The problem for me is just how long it takes to spool it up and be curious to see is it a half of a day or an hour? While its still a lot faster than renting a machine getting that delivered then spooling that up I still see the benefits of it but it has a little ways to go.

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Based only on my own experience, two lost days to get a real flame shipped to me locally would have been more cost-effective than the week or two I spent dealing with the cloud experience before I pulled all the media local and finished the job on a 2013 mac pro. I hope for every cloud-user’s sake that my experience is an outlier; It was the worst remote experience I’ve had.

If I didn’t have a flame-capable machine I would either buy one or rent something from a local hardware rental place–A mid-tier Mac Studio costs like $3000 and runs Flame very well, and even mid 2010’s mac hardware will run Flame decently for most needs. Which is to say in these days of random gigs, it’s not a bad idea to have a machine lying around that will run flame. Bill your clients a kit fee and the gear will be paid off in a job or two.

I would not hinge a freelance gig on a cloud situation.

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I can see the point of Flame in the cloud if you needed to build a bigger VFX team for a short project and wanted to integrate it into a custom pipeline which included cloud based CG, a cloud based rendering solution and a lot of remote workers…. which doesn’t seem like a very Flame-like scenario but could possibly be for some of us.

Considering running Flame in the cloud for about 9 months would cost the same as a Flame spec Threadripper system or a Mac Studio Ultra, and with most Flame freelancers already having their own kit, I am not sure of the use case for it just yet bar the above.

Think I am going to start a new thread with what I would like to see.

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Interesting, and makes sense. Dropbox did bring everything in-house a few years ago for similar reasons.

Running it in-house with proper redundancy and all that goes with it is a complex undertaking too. So I would love to see what the summary is after they’ve run in-house for few years. Yes, Amazon has good margins, but that is also because they built a lot of infrastructure and teams around that. Their uptime and ability to troubleshoot is first class. Different animal from a production house that has a few racks in a machine room.

(in disclosure I worked at Amazon for 5+ years and had direct exposure to these aspects, and managed teams that ran server fleets - that was quite a while ago though, before I changed careers to the film industry)

Someone at least appears to be doing it. This is PR though so maybe take it with a grain of salt?Preymaker Pushes Cloud-based VFX and Colour Workflows to the Edge

We looked into Flame on AWS back when it was announced and realized we’d get eaten in a few months by the storage costs associated with keeping as many jobs as we have going alive as long as they need to be.

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Hello hBomb42.

This is more than PR. Preymaker and other sites are using Flame Family products (and other applications) on AWS as their main production environment with great success.

We use cloud flames in GCP instead of hardware rentals for short term projects (commercials). We tend to use them for shots or short sequences. Things change and the convenience of upgrading ‘hardware’ spec with a few clicks and a reboot is extremely convenient. When not in use, the system image sits dormant for the cost of the OS drive storage ~$5 a month.
As a company with decent existing infrastructure, I do struggle with the costs of cloud when considering longer term commitments. I will continue to keep the majority of kit onsite while we have rack space, power and cooling available. So for me, cloud rentals is where it’s at.
An aside, we recently rendered a CG project using 160 cloud GPU’s. It’s pretty awesome having access to that stuff when project scope creeps.

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This is a great use case for cloud… but interactive, consistent occupancy workstations, not so much.

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Cloud rendering for CG makes LOTS of sense. The fact that you can scale and one instance that would take 1000 minutes costs the same as 1000 instances that would take 1 minute makes it cost effective.

Compositing I’m yet to see it make financial sense about from a quick large scale up for a short term project.

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