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Westlake Pro Builds World-Class Sound Stages with JMR Mac Pro RAID Rackmount Workstations


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Los Angeles based Westlake Pro, an iconic award winning pro audio reseller and studio designer, has chosen and integrated JMR Electronics LightningTM ThunderboltTM certified rackmount workstations into the studio’s high-speed SAN implementations.


The
JMR Lightning Thunderbolt (LTNG-XQ-8-RMMP) product combines the Apple Mac Pro®, three Avid Pro Tools® | HDX cards, RAID storage, a custom I/O panel, and a fiber channel HBA that networks the workstations into the studio’s high-speed SAN implementations.

The rackmount workstations are utilized in Westlake Pro’s sound stage solution for re-recording, mixing, scoring, automated dialogue replacement (ADR), and Foley for film and TV.

Westlake Pro works with post production facilities that can support over 200 Pro Tools systems running on Mac Pros. The new Mac Pros’ cylindrical design and Thunderbolt only interface create an operational challenge at many studios. 

 Hamid Hopkins

Hamid “Gadget” Hopkins, Westlake Pro executive vice president said, “Our clients’ workstations are designed as semi-permanent installs so they can readily be reconfigured when the need arises. When the new Mac Pro came out, while it provided the performance and capability we needed, its design required expansion boxes, unique racking, and many exposed cables  ̶  making it a challenging system to maintain and reconfigure. That led us to investigate JMR and their ability to encapsulate all our needs into one system just like the older Mac Pro towers.”

The JMR Lightning Thunderbolt (LTNG-XQ) product family is designed for Apple Mac Pro users needing to connect to PCIe peripherals. The LTNG-XQ products are the only storage systems on the market featuring four full-bandwidth PCIe slots, using two independent Thunderbolt-2 20Gb/s bridge circuits: One Thunderbolt-2 bridge drives two slots, and a second internal Thunderbolt-2 bridge drives the other two slots. Connections to a host like the Mac Pro include using two of the three available Thunderbolt 2 bus connections to the Mac.

Westlake Pro Equipment Rack with JMR Lightning Rackmount Workstation
JMR Lightning Desktop and Rackmount configurations

Continued Hopkins, “Sessions and movies continue to become more complex and that requires more tracks to handle the intricacies of sound. That complexity requires a system that can handle the speed, connectivity, and reliability requirements we have to drive 3 HDX’s and local RAID along with an extra slot for fiber access. JMR’s system uniquely offers a 4th PCIe slot that allows us to do that all in one high-performance, self-contained, integrated system. Because of the rack system design, even swapping cards in the Mac Pro is easier now.”

“JMR impressed us with their absolute willingness to come out to the studio, listen to what we wanted, and helped us to custom design and configure a system that met our needs and would work well for our clients,” concluded Hopkins. “It took 12 rack spaces to store and stack all the equipment we needed for a single system prior to implementing the JMR Lightning product. Now we have one JMR workstation that fits in a 4U rack space with everything neatly inside. The system is well thought out, rock solid, and tightly integrated. Bottom line is that we are very impressed.”

More details on the JMR Thunderbolt product family can be found at www.jmr.com/thunderbolt-storage-products-external-mac-pro-storage/.

For further information on Westlake Pro, visit them at www.westlakepro.com.


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Curtis Chan