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Anonymous
August 10, 2004 1:09:56 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

I want to transfer all of my old cassettes to digital form, and,
although I've got a good 3-head Rotel deck, it's not auto-reverse.
I want to save the time of having to turn the tape over, since I've
got about 200+ cassettes to transfer.

What would be the best autoreverse deck out there these days that
would provide the best quality I could expect from a cassette when
transferring it to digital?

Is Dolby HX-Pro important in doing this? Or should I just get
a mid-range deck, Sony, Denon or Onkyo, for about $160?

Finally, would it matter much which format I recorded to? That is,
would it be better to record from tape to CD-quality WAV format and
burn as a regular CD, or record from tape to MP3? That is, is the
best quality I could get from a good cassette recording going to
be no better recorded as a WAV than as a high-sampling-rate MP3?

- Tim

--
Anonymous
August 10, 2004 1:09:57 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

"Spammay Blockay" <SPAMBLOCKER@BLOCKEDTOAVOIDSPAM.com> wrote in message
news:cfa3d4$bbn$1@bolt.sonic.net...
> I want to transfer all of my old cassettes to digital form, and,
> although I've got a good 3-head Rotel deck, it's not auto-reverse.
> I want to save the time of having to turn the tape over, since I've
> got about 200+ cassettes to transfer.
>
> What would be the best autoreverse deck out there these days that
> would provide the best quality I could expect from a cassette when
> transferring it to digital?

Maybe a Nakamichi RX-202.

>
> Is Dolby HX-Pro important in doing this? Or should I just get
> a mid-range deck, Sony, Denon or Onkyo, for about $160?

HX-Pro is a Record-Only process, does nothing on playback.

>
> Finally, would it matter much which format I recorded to? That is,
> would it be better to record from tape to CD-quality WAV format and
> burn as a regular CD, or record from tape to MP3?

Ideally, record to WAV file, of course. In practice, it's doubtful the
fidelity of any cassette would challenge a well-encoded MP3 or 128k or
better.

>snip>


Mark Z.
Anonymous
August 10, 2004 1:44:13 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

In article <2nrj4qF3smc6U1@uni-berlin.de>,
Mark D. Zacharias <mzacharias@yis.us> wrote:
>
>"Spammay Blockay" <SPAMBLOCKER@BLOCKEDTOAVOIDSPAM.com> wrote in message
>news:cfa3d4$bbn$1@bolt.sonic.net...
>> I want to transfer all of my old cassettes to digital form, and,
>> although I've got a good 3-head Rotel deck, it's not auto-reverse.
>> I want to save the time of having to turn the tape over, since I've
>> got about 200+ cassettes to transfer.
>>
>> What would be the best autoreverse deck out there these days that
>> would provide the best quality I could expect from a cassette when
>> transferring it to digital?
>
>Maybe a Nakamichi RX-202.
>
>>
>> Is Dolby HX-Pro important in doing this? Or should I just get
>> a mid-range deck, Sony, Denon or Onkyo, for about $160?
>
>HX-Pro is a Record-Only process, does nothing on playback.
>
>>
>> Finally, would it matter much which format I recorded to? That is,
>> would it be better to record from tape to CD-quality WAV format and
>> burn as a regular CD, or record from tape to MP3?
>
>Ideally, record to WAV file, of course. In practice, it's doubtful the
>fidelity of any cassette would challenge a well-encoded MP3 or 128k or
>better.

Thanks for your suggestions! I found a website reference on Deja
which has a ton of info: http://www.arsc-audio.org/

Everyone there recommends getting a Nak Dragon, but I don't want to
spend the vast bucks it would take to buy one and fix it up.

I'll take a look at the Nak RX-202 -- thanks!

- Tim

--
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Anonymous
August 10, 2004 1:58:40 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

Spammay Blockay <SPAMBLOCKER@BLOCKEDTOAVOIDSPAM.com> wrote:
>I want to transfer all of my old cassettes to digital form, and,
>although I've got a good 3-head Rotel deck, it's not auto-reverse.
>I want to save the time of having to turn the tape over, since I've
>got about 200+ cassettes to transfer.
>
>What would be the best autoreverse deck out there these days that
>would provide the best quality I could expect from a cassette when
>transferring it to digital?

There is none. Autoreverse is a bad idea, because if you get the azimuth
set for one side of the tape, when it changes over the error will be
doubled.

>Is Dolby HX-Pro important in doing this? Or should I just get
>a mid-range deck, Sony, Denon or Onkyo, for about $160?

No, HX-Pro is a system that reduces record bias on treble peaks.
It has nothing to do with playback.

>Finally, would it matter much which format I recorded to? That is,
>would it be better to record from tape to CD-quality WAV format and
>burn as a regular CD, or record from tape to MP3? That is, is the
>best quality I could get from a good cassette recording going to
>be no better recorded as a WAV than as a high-sampling-rate MP3?

Yes, it does matter. Cassette artifacts are bad enough without having
MP3 artifacts superimposed on top.
--scott

--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
Anonymous
August 10, 2004 2:40:55 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

"Spammay Blockay" <SPAMBLOCKER@BLOCKEDTOAVOIDSPAM.com> wrote in message
news:cfa3d4$bbn$1@bolt.sonic.net

> I want to transfer all of my old cassettes to digital form, and,
> although I've got a good 3-head Rotel deck, it's not auto-reverse.
> I want to save the time of having to turn the tape over, since I've
> got about 200+ cassettes to transfer.

> What would be the best autoreverse deck out there these days that
> would provide the best quality I could expect from a cassette when
> transferring it to digital?

Tascam has at least one auto-reverse deck. I use one at church.

> Is Dolby HX-Pro important in doing this?

Dolby HX-Pro is a record-side enhancement, only. It also does not really
bridge the immense gap between cassette and CD for demanding music.

>Or should I just get a mid-range deck, Sony, Denon or Onkyo, for about
$160?

Frankly, if you've been away from cassette for a while, you might really be
disappointed at how it sounds, when compared to modern formats. I bounce
back and forth between a consumer-oriented plain vanilla Sony Dolby B/C deck
and Tascams and a HxPro Kenwood without much concern.

Think of the cassette format as a meat grinder that you put music into, but
only some of the flavor and very little of the texture will ever be heard
again.

> Finally, would it matter much which format I recorded to?

Even 16/44 is gross overkill for cassette or LP.

> That is, would it be better to record from tape to CD-quality WAV format
and
> burn as a regular CD, or record from tape to MP3?

In your situation, I see MP3 as an unnecessary extra step that could add
confusion. In your situation all that MP3 can do of value is save disc space
and disk space is very cheap these days.

> That is, is the best quality I could get from a good cassette recording
going to
> be no better recorded as a WAV than as a high-sampling-rate MP3?

I'm pretty comfortable with 44/16 as a overkill media for transcribing
cassettes, but not MP3. That all said, really good MP3s blow away cassettes
in terms of sound quality if you compare cassette playback of a CD cassette
dubbing back to the original CD source.

You can count on a 44/16 wave file as being a sonically equivalent copy of
any cassette tape subject to the quality of your transcription work, but you
still can't count on a MP3 being a sonically equivalent copy of a demanding
wav file.
Anonymous
August 10, 2004 3:10:39 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

In article <cfa3d4$bbn$1@bolt.sonic.net> SPAMBLOCKER@BLOCKEDTOAVOIDSPAM.com writes:

> I want to transfer all of my old cassettes to digital form, and,
> although I've got a good 3-head Rotel deck, it's not auto-reverse.
> I want to save the time of having to turn the tape over, since I've
> got about 200+ cassettes to transfer.

That's not such a big load. Take half a minute out of your life every
45 minutes and turn the cassettes over. Better to use a deck you know
and trust than to take a chance on a cheap deck that does the reverse
trick. You probably can use the exercise anyway.

> Is Dolby HX-Pro important in doing this? Or should I just get
> a mid-range deck, Sony, Denon or Onkyo, for about $160?

HX-Pro has nothing to do with playback so it doesn't matter for your
application. If you can find a Sony, Denon or Onkyo auto-reverse deck
for $160 and it's worth $160 to you to not have to get up and turn
over the cassettes, then do it. It'll probably last through 200 of
them. But don't forget to clean the heads every few passes because
those are probably pretty old tapes. And of course you'll be giving up
the possibility of tweaking the head alignment for each tape since the
adjustment will probably be buried. But if you're not inclined to turn
over the tape, you'd probably not be inclined to touch up the
alignment for each one anyway. Laziness gets you a quicker but
mediocre job.

> Finally, would it matter much which format I recorded to?

Your choice. What do you want to end up with and how good do you
expect it to sound? MP3 has a different set of problems than a
cassette. WAV is more transparent and will change what comes from teh
cassette deck less. Whether it makes a difference is a matter of the
program material, how you intend to play it back, and how much you
really care. If you just wanted to listen to the music casually, then
I see no reason why not to use MP3. Everyone else does. But if you
want to get the best sound you can from these tapes, use uncompressed
WAV recording. But then you're back to improving the quality of the
source - with a better tape deck and checking alignment for each tape.


--
I'm really Mike Rivers (mrivers@d-and-d.com)
However, until the spam goes away or Hell freezes over,
lots of IP addresses are blocked from this system. If
you e-mail me and it bounces, use your secret decoder ring
and reach me here: double-m-eleven-double-zero at yahoo
Anonymous
August 11, 2004 12:16:48 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

On Tue, 10 Aug 2004 09:09:56 GMT, SPAMBLOCKER@BLOCKEDTOAVOIDSPAM.com
(Spammay Blockay) wrote:

>I want to transfer all of my old cassettes to digital form, and,
>although I've got a good 3-head Rotel deck, it's not auto-reverse.
>I want to save the time of having to turn the tape over, since I've
>got about 200+ cassettes to transfer.

I wouldn't bother. Compared with the job of trimming, organising and
indexing your recordings (and there's no point doing this if you can't
FIND your material later:-), the extra trouble involved in flipping
the tapes is minimal.


>
>What would be the best autoreverse deck out there these days that
>would provide the best quality I could expect from a cassette when
>transferring it to digital?
>
>Is Dolby HX-Pro important in doing this? Or should I just get
>a mid-range deck, Sony, Denon or Onkyo, for about $160?

HX-Pro is a recording process. It's irreverent to your needs.

>
>Finally, would it matter much which format I recorded to? That is,
>would it be better to record from tape to CD-quality WAV format and
>burn as a regular CD, or record from tape to MP3? That is, is the
>best quality I could get from a good cassette recording going to
>be no better recorded as a WAV than as a high-sampling-rate MP3?

Depends how good your source is, what type of music and how fussy you
are. I suspect hi-rate MP3 will be fine.


Assuming the tapes weren't all recorded on the same machine, you CAN
make a considerable difference in quality by adjusting the azimuth
setting for each tape. Laborious, but it will make MUCH more
difference than the choice between wav and hi-rate MP3.
Anonymous
August 11, 2004 12:17:25 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

On Tue, 10 Aug 2004 04:34:25 -0500, "Mark D. Zacharias"
<mzacharias@yis.us> wrote:

>
>"Spammay Blockay" <SPAMBLOCKER@BLOCKEDTOAVOIDSPAM.com> wrote in message
>news:cfa3d4$bbn$1@bolt.sonic.net...
>> I want to transfer all of my old cassettes to digital form, and,
>> although I've got a good 3-head Rotel deck, it's not auto-reverse.
>> I want to save the time of having to turn the tape over, since I've
>> got about 200+ cassettes to transfer.

Try, Technics, the RZ-AZ6 or the RZ-AZ7 (which is better as it has a
direct PB head out, "Play Direct" function, straightforwarding the
signal path). They both have a magneto-resistive PB head and a
dedicated circuitry. The head is by design quite different of any PB
heads known to me. Here, it sounds very good even with old cassette
tapes. By removing the cover lid, you can adjust the azimuth too but
the most of the mechanism is made of plastics so take care not to
force the screw too much. And never degauss anything as you will trash
the head. I heard some stories form a local authorized service in
regard with this.

Edi Zubovic, Crikvenica, Croatia
Anonymous
August 12, 2004 8:53:48 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

>It's irreverent to your needs.

LOL !

Mark Z.


"Laurence Payne" <l@laurenceDELETEpayne.freeserve.co.uk> wrote in message
news:bd7ih0lofhbi2vcjp6emrv5vdd3q41fbf6@4ax.com...
> On Tue, 10 Aug 2004 09:09:56 GMT, SPAMBLOCKER@BLOCKEDTOAVOIDSPAM.com
> (Spammay Blockay) wrote:
>
> >I want to transfer all of my old cassettes to digital form, and,
> >although I've got a good 3-head Rotel deck, it's not auto-reverse.
> >I want to save the time of having to turn the tape over, since I've
> >got about 200+ cassettes to transfer.
>
> I wouldn't bother. Compared with the job of trimming, organising and
> indexing your recordings (and there's no point doing this if you can't
> FIND your material later:-), the extra trouble involved in flipping
> the tapes is minimal.
>
>
> >
> >What would be the best autoreverse deck out there these days that
> >would provide the best quality I could expect from a cassette when
> >transferring it to digital?
> >
> >Is Dolby HX-Pro important in doing this? Or should I just get
> >a mid-range deck, Sony, Denon or Onkyo, for about $160?
>
> HX-Pro is a recording process. It's irreverent to your needs.
>
> >
> >Finally, would it matter much which format I recorded to? That is,
> >would it be better to record from tape to CD-quality WAV format and
> >burn as a regular CD, or record from tape to MP3? That is, is the
> >best quality I could get from a good cassette recording going to
> >be no better recorded as a WAV than as a high-sampling-rate MP3?
>
> Depends how good your source is, what type of music and how fussy you
> are. I suspect hi-rate MP3 will be fine.
>
>
> Assuming the tapes weren't all recorded on the same machine, you CAN
> make a considerable difference in quality by adjusting the azimuth
> setting for each tape. Laborious, but it will make MUCH more
> difference than the choice between wav and hi-rate MP3.
Anonymous
August 12, 2004 10:08:15 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

On or about 10 Aug 2004 09:58:40 -0400, Scott Dorsey allegedly wrote:

> >What would be the best autoreverse deck out there these days that
> >would provide the best quality I could expect from a cassette when
> >transferring it to digital?
>
> There is none. Autoreverse is a bad idea, because if you get the azimuth
> set for one side of the tape, when it changes over the error will be
> doubled.

I agree that auto reverse is bad, and he should trim azimuth for each
cassette side.

However Scott, you might want to have another think about the azimuth
geometry involved in flipping a cassette. When flipped end to end (as you
do with a cassette), a +2 degree azimuth error will still be +2 degrees
(+/- other shell alignment or head movement issues).

The azimuth error would only double if you flipped the tape over and read
through the back of it.

Noel Bachelor noelbachelorAT(From:_domain)
Language Recordings Inc (Darwin Australia)
Anonymous
August 12, 2004 10:08:16 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

> Autoreverse is a bad idea, because if you get the azimuth set for
> one side of the tape, when it changes over the error will be doubled.

The Nakamichi Dragon automatically sets the correct azimuth, regardless of the
tape's direction.
Anonymous
August 12, 2004 2:21:03 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

Noel Bachelor <ChangeMe@bigpond.com> wrote:
>
>However Scott, you might want to have another think about the azimuth
>geometry involved in flipping a cassette. When flipped end to end (as you
>do with a cassette), a +2 degree azimuth error will still be +2 degrees
>(+/- other shell alignment or head movement issues).
>
>The azimuth error would only double if you flipped the tape over and read
>through the back of it.

Aargh. That's right, and makes sense.
--scott

--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
Anonymous
August 12, 2004 2:21:04 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

"Scott Dorsey" <kludge@panix.com> wrote in message
news:cffucf$fch$1@panix2.panix.com...
> Noel Bachelor <ChangeMe@bigpond.com> wrote:
> >
> >However Scott, you might want to have another think about the azimuth
> >geometry involved in flipping a cassette. When flipped end to end (as
you
> >do with a cassette), a +2 degree azimuth error will still be +2 degrees
> >(+/- other shell alignment or head movement issues).
> >
> >The azimuth error would only double if you flipped the tape over and read
> >through the back of it.
>
> Aargh. That's right, and makes sense.

Of course that assumes some sort of precision in the head-flipping
mechanism which seems optimistic at best in a mass-produced
consumer product.
Anonymous
August 13, 2004 9:34:30 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

The RX-202 physically turns the tape cartridge over. Azimuth is fixed.

Mark Z.

--
Please reply only to Group. I regret this is necessary. Viruses and spam
have rendered my regular e-mail address useless.


"Scott Dorsey" <kludge@panix.com> wrote in message
news:cffucf$fch$1@panix2.panix.com...
> Noel Bachelor <ChangeMe@bigpond.com> wrote:
> >
> >However Scott, you might want to have another think about the azimuth
> >geometry involved in flipping a cassette. When flipped end to end (as
you
> >do with a cassette), a +2 degree azimuth error will still be +2 degrees
> >(+/- other shell alignment or head movement issues).
> >
> >The azimuth error would only double if you flipped the tape over and read
> >through the back of it.
>
> Aargh. That's right, and makes sense.
> --scott
>
> --
> "C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
Anonymous
August 13, 2004 1:20:32 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

Mark D. Zacharias <mzacharias@yis.us> wrote:
>The RX-202 physically turns the tape cartridge over. Azimuth is fixed.

Oh.... for a cassette deck whose azimuth is _really_ fixed....
--scott
--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
Anonymous
August 13, 2004 2:27:53 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

In article <2o3jpjF6keh5U1@uni-berlin.de> mzacharias@yis.us writes:

> The RX-202 physically turns the tape cartridge over.

Really? That must be a sight to see. I remember a record changer that
turned the record over.

> Azimuth is fixed.

No, azimuth is broken again when the tape is turned over.


--
I'm really Mike Rivers (mrivers@d-and-d.com)
However, until the spam goes away or Hell freezes over,
lots of IP addresses are blocked from this system. If
you e-mail me and it bounces, use your secret decoder ring
and reach me here: double-m-eleven-double-zero at yahoo
Anonymous
August 14, 2004 4:59:22 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

Replying here since my ISP's news server lost the beginning of the thread.


It just occurred to me that the Philips DCC decks have auto-reverse.

I have one ( a bargain buy from Richer Sounds ) that I boughtt out of curiosity
sa much as anything. At the time Sony's MD was still slated for its poor ATRACS
performance and Philips equivalent ( whose name I forget now ) was considered to
be a far superior compression technique.

Trouble was - I discovered - the tapes self-erase after a few yrs !

Consolation was that the digital heads also play analogue cassettes and the
azimuth must be stunning to even remotely be able to do digital.

Best sounding cassette replay deck I've ever heard.

If you can find one, I suggest you get it.


Graham
Anonymous
August 14, 2004 10:10:11 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

On 13 Aug 2004 10:27:53 -0400, mrivers@d-and-d.com (Mike Rivers)
wrote:

>> The RX-202 physically turns the tape cartridge over.
>
>Really? That must be a sight to see. I remember a record changer that
>turned the record over.

Yeah, it's just like that. It pulls down (up, in this case) the
head bridge, withdraws the cassette from the machine, rotates it
180, and re-inserts. Just like a person would do.

The strange thing is, this is a really reliable mechanism. They
got this one right. Who knew?

The 202's use the same transport as the BX-n series and the 505's
have the transport from the LX-n, CR-n, Dragon, etc. series.
Mostly true; some exceptions, natch.

Chris Hornbeck
Anonymous
August 14, 2004 6:37:17 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

> When the Nak sales rep, in 1986, first introduced us (the dealer I
> worked for in Phila.) to the RX decks, bragging about Nak's "innovative"
> reversing system, I had a nice bit of fun taking him to the back & showing
> him an Akai GXC-65D, a deck from the mid '70's with precisely the same
> kind of reversing mech, only horizontal. He was rather speechless for a
minute.

That was the changer that stacked the tapes, wasn't it?

There's nothing wrong with unidirectional autoreverse, except for the fact that,
unlike the Dragon, it does nothing to align the play head with the recording
that's being dubbed.
!