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New user questions - versioning, editing and reviewing uploaded content


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I'm currently evaluating Ftrack Studio to se whether it is a viable option for our needs (commercials VFX, ~50 ppl).  Right now we're using our own production tracking

We like how Ftrack is much more easy to read and faster to navigate than Shotgun, and in general we really like it. However, there are a few essential things that make us sad and confused. It's possible we're just overlooking something. Would you guys be so kind and provide some answers for us?

1. versioning

Honestly, versioning system is a single thing that bugs me the most about Ftrack so far.  Say I've got an Asset build with a some tasks in it. If I upload multiple files into a task, that don't have the same file names, they end up being multiple different objects inside of a single task, instead of multiple versions of the same object. At first I thought I'm doing something wrong but this seems to be a way how it actually works. If the file name is different, it's not the same thing. This behaviour is a source of confusion, and definitely not what we want. The fact is, in our envionment (especially in concepting and modelling stage) people often want to just quickly upload a screen grab or something, for a review. These files have random names and we don't really need or want to build a system to keep it consistent. If it's in the same task, we always want to consider it as a version of the same thing. The idea of having multiple elements in the same task is interesting, but the fact it's decided by a file name whether it is a new thing or a version, seems very restrictive. Even in late stages, like lighting, we want to be able to have some dynamic strings embedded in a file name (like "half-res", or something), and still be able to treat it as a version rather than a separate element. Is there a way to go around this? How do you guys treat versions? 

2. editing uploaded content

Another thing that feels quite inconvenient is once you upload a file, you don't seem to be able to edit it. During our test drive it often happened that people uploaded their files in a wrong place (like Asset Build root instead of a Task), and we wanted to move it afterwards. Unfortunately, we couldn't find a way how to do it, other than deleting the entry and ask the artist to upload it again. This is, of course, an another source of confusion and review delays. Are we missing something here?

3. reviews

What we'd like to do pretty often, is to review and compare everything that's been added to a Task (or Asset, Shot, etc...), let's say yesterday. So I tried to add a Task to a List, expecting to be able to define some filters. Haven't been given any options. Fair enough, I thought perhaps it just lists everything in that Task and I'll be able to filter items by time in Web Player. Unfortunately, this doesn't seem to work that way either. It only seems to load the latest item in a Task with no way to bring the rest of the stuff other than manually adding it to the List. I think this mostly comes back to the versioning system that doesn't fit to our way of working. Time filtering (thou limited) seems to be possible only for Versions, as well as other handy things like Related versions and comparison tools, which are kinda useless to us. This way reviewing becomes kind of disorderly. Any thoughts?

4. Not working with exr?

Hard to believe. Is it really not possible to use exr files with Ftrack?

5. simplified artist interface

By this I mean, is there something like Shotgun Create? Like a Lite version where artists only see their own tasks and notes addressed to them, in much simplified interface? Originaly I thought that's what Ftrack Review is, but it seems to be a separate thing that doesn't talk to Studio version.

Thanks to anybody who did it all the way through that pile of text :) Many thanks for any responses.



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