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A picture of Fabian Pross

Fabian Pross

Technical director (Polynoid)

Posted in artist, film, mac, windows

Who are you, and what do you do?

My name is Pit (my real name is Fabian Pross), I'm part and technical director of the Polynoid collective. We are a bunch of filmmakers/nerds, conceptualizing and producing CG short films and commercials.

What hardware do you use?

I have a core i7 workstation under my desk, rocking 12 gigs of RAM. Not sure what kind of graphics card I have there - I grew up as a Mac user, so I don't know much about the internals of computers. We share a QNAP NAS called Biberbau at the studio which is running on a RAID5 setup. Peripheral wise I'm using an M sized Wacom Intous 4 in combination with a cheap keyboard and mouse. I'm looking at a 20" Apple Cinema Display, a 24" Dell U 2410 and a Canon EOS 500d lying on my desk which I hardly use, sadly. Our office pet is a Goliath KackelDackel, which has been suffering from obstipation lately because it's taken for a walk so rarely. When I'm not sitting in my white IKEA Verner, I carry a yellow Burton Shooter Case man purse with an iPad (for emails, tv shows, games and comic books on the go) and an iPhone classic besides some random paper stuff. The iPhone is my backup phone which I ditched for a Palm Pixie Plus. I love my Pixie although it's always so thirsty for power. I also use a 13" MacBook Pro on my couch socializing and reloading the Polynoid Vimeo page.

And what software?

Our main production software is Autodesk Softimage, which I use with several plugins like emPolygonizer, emRPC, emFluid and lately Arnold for rendering. For distributed rendering we use Royal Render. Eyeon Fusion serves for comp work besides Photoshop and After Effects as well as Chrome and Firefox for Browsing and Google Docs for Spreadsheets and Word Processing. I love Mac OS on my Mac, but my workstation is running Windows 7 because there is no Mac version of Softimage. It took us two weeks to set up our Ubuntu 64 server, but since then, we never had a problem with it.

What would be your dream setup?

When you're dealing with 3D production, there is (and never will be) a setup that can handle your stuff as fast as you'd like it to. It's a vicious cycle: the more horsepower you have, the more you crank up settings and polycounts. No matter what hardware there will be in the future, I will always hope for something faster...