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 HP Helps DreamWorks Animation’s "Turbo" Race into Theater

HP has announced that DreamWorks Animation used HP technology to develop animation for its latest film, “Turbo.”

HP Converged Infrastructure technology spanning servers, storage, networking, services and management software; HP Converged Cloud; and HP Workstations and printers helped DreamWorks Animation process massive amounts of data, according to HP.

“DreamWorks Animation’s strategic alliance with HP ensured that we had the high-performance computing, continuous availability and streamlined management capabilities needed to accurately depict Turbo’s dream of becoming the world’s fastest racer,” said Derek Chan, head of Technology Global Operations, DreamWorks Animation, in a press release. “HP’s advanced Converged Infrastructure portfolio enabled our artists and engineers to create the highest-quality picture possible.”

DreamWorks Animation used HP Z workstations to recreate the thrill of the Indy 500, with a snail traveling 220 miles per hour and more than 500,000 crowd characters filling a replica of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

HP Z800 and Z820 Workstations, powered by Intel Sandy Bridge Xeon E5 processors, enabled artists to execute iterations 50% faster than previous workstations, according to the company, and develop increasingly complex camera angles and special effects. When not in use by creative teams, workstation processing power was used to run nighttime rendering jobs, contributing to the millions of compute hours needed to produce the movie.

The company says HP Remote Graphics Software — a free HP Workstation tool — enabled animators to collaborate more efficiently across geographies by viewing ideas and assets on a single display.

HP also says its HP FlexNetwork architecture solutions enabled DreamWorks Animation to increase performance, reduce latency between global studio locations and provide constant availability to support faster rendering and review times while boosting animator productivity.

Finally, the company says HP Networking provided animators with access to a central repository of assets, simplifying collaboration by allowing artists to easily share and retrieve resources across all locations.

The production of “Turbo” required 75 million render hours to create fully realized images, including 32 Indy 500 race cars and 32 million crowd character instances, the most  of any DreamWorks Animation film to date.

DreamWorks Animation used HP Enterprise Cloud Services to provide a cloud-based infrastructure that offers the additional compute power needed to render the 10 films that are in production at any given time, according to HP. HP Enterprise Cloud Services, part of the HP Converged Cloud portfolio, helps DreamWorks Animation meet growing business needs while remaining within its existing data center footprint.

To handle the rendering demands of “Turbo,” DreamWorks Animation relied on HP ProLiant Generation 8 (Gen8) servers. The company says HP ProLiant Gen8 servers increased render throughput by approximately 40% and performance per watt by approximately 42%, allowing DreamWorks Animation to render an average of 500,000 jobs a day to ensure that the studio had the compute power to complete the production on time.

For more information, visit HP.

Sources: Press materials received from the company and additional information gleaned from the company’s website. 

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