Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Analog Alternative to Tape? Let's invent it!

Last response: in Home Audio
Share
Anonymous
January 17, 2005 5:24:40 AM

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

No, I'm not suggesting wire recorders!

Most of us dump from 2" to digital immediately after a session anyways.
So if we're not using the tape as a storage medium, why do we even
need the moving tape to get our beloved analog "sound"? That "sound"
is colored by three factors that I can think of:

1. The record and playback heads.
2. The magnetic properties of the paint on the tape, but not really
the plastic tape itself, nor it's movement. Correct me if I'm mistaken
about this.
3. The print-through; the echoes and pre-echos created by the packed
tape.

So what do we need that 2" by 1/4 mile long rectangle of moving plastic
for anyways? (Tape). Couldn't a small stationary piece of magnetic
material serve the same purpose if the music was constantly streamed
off of it through a playback head and into an Analog-to-Digital
Convertor to the hard drive?

I would imagine the print-through could be effectively recreated with
analog delays. It would be nice to have a knob for more or less
print-through, season to taste! :>)

Probably there's a very simple reason why this can't work, but I can't
come up with a reason why not. Sometimes it's just a matter of
thinking outside of the box.
Whaddaya think?
Cheers, Rick Novak.
Anonymous
January 17, 2005 8:24:40 AM

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

The original LaserDisc used FM analog recording for the sound. Such a system
could be adapted to current optical formats.
Anonymous
January 17, 2005 11:42:08 AM

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

"William Sommerwerck" <williams@nwlink.com> wrote in message
news:10unf52rhm15rac@corp.supernews.com

> The original LaserDisc used FM analog recording for the sound. Such a
> system could be adapted to current optical formats.

But, it would be difficult to make a FM-based system distort as euphinically
as analog tape.

Digital simulations of analog tape are the most like sucessful simulation
technology. Ironically, the further you go away from analog tape, the closer
you can get to simulating its sound.
Related resources
Anonymous
January 17, 2005 12:41:47 PM

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

William Sommerwerck <williams@nwlink.com> wrote:
>The original LaserDisc used FM analog recording for the sound. Such a system
>could be adapted to current optical formats.

Yes, but it was generally a pain in the neck and didn't really sound all
that good. Same goes for FM recording on tape. It causes more trouble
than it solves unless you're trying to record frequencies that are lower
than the medium can handle (which is the case for laserdiscs, VHS Hi-Fi
and analogue instrumentation recorders that need response to DC).
--scott
--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
Anonymous
January 17, 2005 1:29:03 PM

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

In article <1105957480.707701.121150@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com> snovak2@earthlink.net writes:

> So what do we need that 2" by 1/4 mile long rectangle of moving plastic
> for anyways? (Tape). Couldn't a small stationary piece of magnetic
> material serve the same purpose if the music was constantly streamed
> off of it through a playback head and into an Analog-to-Digital
> Convertor to the hard drive?

If the tape is stationary, there's nothing to play back. You could do
what you propose with a loop of tape or a magnetic disk or drum, but
then you'd have a wear problem unless it was a non-contact head and
then you'd have a different flux situation to simulate.

Besides, one reason why people use stand-alone recorder (analog or
digital, but we're talking about analong) is because they're easy to
use for tracking. You just push the buttons and go. After the talent
goes home, the engineer transfers the tracks to digital (if that's his
choice) and starts all the fiddling.

Of course if you're working with an artist who wants to record by
doing several passes and editing the best parts together, that's a job
for a DAW, but if you have to do that on basic tracks, you'd best send
the band back to the practice room for a while. This is why the
workflow de jour for "that" kind of studio seems to be to record basic
tracks (which may be only drums, bass, and a couple of guide tracks
for melody) on analog tape, transfer those tracks to a DAW, the put
the tape on the shelf. Record/edit the vocals a word at a time and the
guitar solos a note at a time, then once it sounds something like
music, decide whether to go back to the analog tape for mixing or if
the digital version is good enough.



--
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
January 17, 2005 1:29:04 PM

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

Mike Rivers wrote:

> Record/edit the vocals a word at a time and the guitar solos a note
> at a time, then once it sounds something like music,


L.O.L.
Anonymous
January 17, 2005 1:36:08 PM

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

Couldn't a small stationary piece of magnetic
material serve the same purpose if the music was constantly streamed
off of it through a playback head and into an Analog-to-Digital
Convertor to the hard drive?

I did this for a while with drum tracks using an old TEAC 80-8. Worked very
nicely.

DJ

"rickymix" <snovak2@earthlink.net> wrote in message
news:1105957480.707701.121150@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com...
> No, I'm not suggesting wire recorders!
>
> Most of us dump from 2" to digital immediately after a session anyways.
> So if we're not using the tape as a storage medium, why do we even
> need the moving tape to get our beloved analog "sound"? That "sound"
> is colored by three factors that I can think of:
>
> 1. The record and playback heads.
> 2. The magnetic properties of the paint on the tape, but not really
> the plastic tape itself, nor it's movement. Correct me if I'm mistaken
> about this.
> 3. The print-through; the echoes and pre-echos created by the packed
> tape.
>
> So what do we need that 2" by 1/4 mile long rectangle of moving plastic
> for anyways? (Tape). Couldn't a small stationary piece of magnetic
> material serve the same purpose if the music was constantly streamed
> off of it through a playback head and into an Analog-to-Digital
> Convertor to the hard drive?
>
> I would imagine the print-through could be effectively recreated with
> analog delays. It would be nice to have a knob for more or less
> print-through, season to taste! :>)
>
> Probably there's a very simple reason why this can't work, but I can't
> come up with a reason why not. Sometimes it's just a matter of
> thinking outside of the box.
> Whaddaya think?
> Cheers, Rick Novak.
>
Anonymous
January 17, 2005 4:00:47 PM

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

RN wrote:
> Couldn't a small stationary piece of magnetic
material serve the same purpose if the music was constantly streamed
off of it through a playback head and into an Analog-to-Digital
Convertor to the hard drive?

DJ wrote:
>>I did this for a while with drum tracks using an old TEAC 80-8.
Worked very nicely.

Hi DJ,
How did you do this? Was the tape moving?

Also, I think we've generally underestimated the value of print-through
in fattening the sound. Too much and the sound gets smeared, just like
too much reverb or DDL. I suspect we've been predjudiced by the
annoyance of having to deal with that pre-delay at the beginning of the
song.
Cheers, Rick.
Anonymous
January 17, 2005 5:12:16 PM

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

Yes,

I just fed the deck direct from the preamps, rolled tape and fed the outputs
to my DAW.

DJ


"rickymix" <snovak2@earthlink.net> wrote in message
news:1105995647.226993.239630@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com...
> RN wrote:
> > Couldn't a small stationary piece of magnetic
> material serve the same purpose if the music was constantly streamed
> off of it through a playback head and into an Analog-to-Digital
> Convertor to the hard drive?
>
> DJ wrote:
> >>I did this for a while with drum tracks using an old TEAC 80-8.
> Worked very nicely.
>
> Hi DJ,
> How did you do this? Was the tape moving?
>
> Also, I think we've generally underestimated the value of print-through
> in fattening the sound. Too much and the sound gets smeared, just like
> too much reverb or DDL. I suspect we've been predjudiced by the
> annoyance of having to deal with that pre-delay at the beginning of the
> song.
> Cheers, Rick.
>
Anonymous
January 17, 2005 5:54:00 PM

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

<< Couldn't a small stationary piece of magnetic
material serve the same purpose >>




You mean a transformer?


Joe Egan
EMP
Colchester, VT
www.eganmedia.com
Anonymous
January 17, 2005 9:01:12 PM

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

In article <csgt5r022ig@enews1.newsguy.com> animix_spamless_@animas.net writes:

> Couldn't a small stationary piece of magnetic
> material serve the same purpose if the music was constantly streamed
> off of it through a playback head and into an Analog-to-Digital
> Convertor to the hard drive?
>
> I did this for a while with drum tracks using an old TEAC 80-8. Worked very
> nicely.

With the tape stationary? If that's what you did, you didn't even have
to thread the tape. You were just going through the electronics. If
that's the sound you want, then you got it. However, in order for a
playback head to work, the tape has to be moving across it.



--
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
January 17, 2005 9:44:29 PM

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

On Mon, 17 Jan 2005 11:24:40 +0100, rickymix wrote:

> Analog Alternative to Tape? Let's invent it!

I realy don't understand the recreation of errors, and the nead to use
specific hardware to recreate these errors.

You see the same with tubes, transformers etc. Today, with the experience
of 30 years of manufacturing high definition CRT tubes, it should be quite
easy to create tubes designers in the 60's and 70's could only dream of.
Still a fortune is paid for old stocks of vintage tubes.

Now the anolog tape devices are dying, because ther are better products.

If you want to recreate the errors, I think it could be done in software
processing digital datastreams.

If you do so, don't forget the dropouts, crossover, wow, flutter, hiss,
hum, distortion, misalignment, speed inaccuracy, frequency curve etc. to
get a real "vintage" sound.

--
Chel van Gennip
Visit Serg van Gennip's site http://www.serg.vangennip.com
Anonymous
January 17, 2005 9:44:30 PM

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

Chel van Gennip <chel@vangennip.nl> wrote:
>On Mon, 17 Jan 2005 11:24:40 +0100, rickymix wrote:
>
>> Analog Alternative to Tape? Let's invent it!
>
>I realy don't understand the recreation of errors, and the nead to use
>specific hardware to recreate these errors.

Because they can be useful errors when used creatively. If you are trying
to create a new sound, rather than precisely reproduce an existing sound,
analogue tape gives you a whole bunch of different colorations you can use
that may be artistically appropriate.

>You see the same with tubes, transformers etc. Today, with the experience
>of 30 years of manufacturing high definition CRT tubes, it should be quite
>easy to create tubes designers in the 60's and 70's could only dream of.
>Still a fortune is paid for old stocks of vintage tubes.

For the most part, that is because nobody is willing to pay the money to
create those tubes. There _are_ some amazing new tubes on the market
now (the 6C33C is a personal favorite... plate resistance in the low ohms
region, and a pair of them will drive an 8-ohm load directly). But for
the most part development on tubes has stopped because there's no money
in it. It's hard enough just getting folks to keep turning out decent
quality tubes as it is, when profit margins on them are so low.

>Now the anolog tape devices are dying, because ther are better products.

For many, many things, there are better products. For some things there
are not.

>If you want to recreate the errors, I think it could be done in software
>processing digital datastreams.

I'm waiting for this to be possible. I think ultimately a lot of it will
turn out to be, but the technology isn't even close to being there yet.
I am hoping for better modelling though.

>If you do so, don't forget the dropouts, crossover, wow, flutter, hiss,
>hum, distortion, misalignment, speed inaccuracy, frequency curve etc. to
>get a real "vintage" sound.

Most of these things can be changed on the fly, though. I can change
the impulse response in all sorts of different ways while keeping the
frequency response constant, using tape.
--scott
--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
Anonymous
January 17, 2005 9:44:30 PM

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

In article <352brtF4g2dt9U1@individual.net> chel@vangennip.nl writes:

> Now the anolog tape devices are dying, because ther are better products.

Actually it started dying because there were cheaper and more
convenient consumer products. There have been little hiccups in the
home tape recording market like back in the '70's when kids would tape
each other's LPs and trade them around, but in general recording isn't
a big deal to the majority of the people who owned tape recorders.
Mostly they played tapes. When CDs came along, there wasn't enough of
a demand to develop a home-grade CD recorder right away, they just
sort of fell out of the computer market, and there are probably more
home made MP3 CDs today than home made Red Book CDs.

The professional recording tape market has always been pretty small,
and has indeed shrunk due to the recent availability of digital
recording equipment that's good enough for a pro to consider it a
viable alternative. But as I said in another post, not everyone can
economically make the switch at any given time.

> If you want to recreate the errors, I think it could be done in software
> processing digital datastreams.

People keep talking about errors. I wish you wouldn't. Talk about
recreating the sound of tape. But that's difficult to do because it's
difficult to quantify. You can make a level-dependent second and third
harmonic distortion generator, and you can simulate hiss, and plot
output level vs. input level (tape compression) and correlate that
with the distortion, and have different curves for different tape
types, bias level, head gap, and head inductance but as far as I know,
nobody's studied it to that level because emulating the sound of tape
just hasn't been all that important. It's not the only reason why
people use tape - other reasons are equally important.

I'd be curious to know what the golden tape ears think of the tape
simulator on Yamaha's new digital mixer plug-in. It has controls for
tape type and speed, bias, and operating level, as well as a choice of
three different machines. Yamaha often does a very good job of things
that demand a lot of detailed simulation work. But no matter how it
sounds, it still doesn't make operating the machine any easier, in
fact it's more difficult because there are more choices to make -
given that level of control, you can't just say "I'm going to have a
late model Studer with 456 tape biased at 2.5 dB over 0, running at
9 dB over standard operating level" and be done with it. In the
computer world, we don't work that way.

> If you do so, don't forget the dropouts, crossover, wow, flutter, hiss,
> hum, distortion, misalignment, speed inaccuracy, frequency curve etc. to
> get a real "vintage" sound.

All valid points.

--
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
January 17, 2005 10:39:41 PM

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

"Mike Rivers" <mrivers@d-and-d.com> wrote in message
news:znr1105994041k@trad
> In article <csgt5r022ig@enews1.newsguy.com>
> animix_spamless_@animas.net writes:
>
>> Couldn't a small stationary piece of magnetic
>> material serve the same purpose if the music was constantly streamed
>> off of it through a playback head and into an Analog-to-Digital
>> Convertor to the hard drive?
>>
>> I did this for a while with drum tracks using an old TEAC 80-8.
>> Worked very nicely.
>
> With the tape stationary? If that's what you did, you didn't even have
> to thread the tape. You were just going through the electronics. If
> that's the sound you want, then you got it. However, in order for a
> playback head to work, the tape has to be moving across it.

There might be a bit of a precedent for this. I once examined the schematic
and a sample of a high end preamp that had the shell of a phono cartridge in
the feedback loop. The claim was made that this would null out some
nonlinear distortion in the phono cartridge. My take is that they were
spitting at a fire hose.
Anonymous
January 17, 2005 10:39:42 PM

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

> There might be a bit of a precedent for this. I once examined the schematic
> and a sample of a high end preamp that had the shell of a phono cartridge
> in the feedback loop. The claim was made that this would null out some
> nonlinear distortion in the phono cartridge. My take is that they were
> spitting at a fire hose.

This was probably Kinergetics, and it was probably the coil, not the shell, per
se.

Kinergetics made a variety of products -- including a tuner -- in which various
nonlinear elements could be switched into the feedback loop of a buffer. The
theory was that the nonlinearity of the element would null out matching
nonlinearities in the signal. In the case of the tuner, the designer had
actually rummaged through FM stations looking for "typical" wires, switches,
capacitors, etc.

I could hear rather gross differences as he switched various bits of wire and
resistors in and out. This was, of course, short-term anecdotal listening, so it
doesn't carry much weight. (But I never heard the green marker pen, even when
the discoveries were standing in my living room demonstrating its effect.)
January 18, 2005 2:38:58 AM

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

I had the pleasure of doing some strings in the best studio in London .
.. . Neve desk, lots of unique old bits of gear, bits of old BBC mixers
that do unique wierd effects etc. I asked the producer why he used
tape, and his answer was that he gets a GREATER frequency response out
of tape than digital, even when running digital at 96k 24-bit using the
most expensive converters there are. He was using EQ's to do things at
10Hz and 30KHz on tape, and it made a difference to the final sound.

I know this goes against the obvious first-thoughts on a lot of things,
like the frequency capabilities of the finished CD's, etc. But his
results seem to confirm that there is something in what he is saying.

Chris
http://www.chris-melchior.com/strings.htm (real strings for realistic
prices)
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 4:15:04 AM

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

What about a cd-sized disk made of some easily magnetized material
which spins around at 30 ips. Record head at 12:00, playback head at
6:00, erase head at 11:00. A/D convertors come off the playback head
and go to the hard drive. The heads don't quite touch the disk, so
there's no wear and tear.
It seems something like that could be tweaked to sound like a tape deck
much more easily than a bunch of digital algorithms.

Or instead of a disk it could be a cylinder with the heads either on
the inside or outside, depending on what works best for the magnetic
fields involved. Edison would be proud! :>)

If it was simple and small and cheap and really worked, I could imagine
a worthwhile market for it.

Even better from a marketing point of view, create a small black box
which was impenetrable and would self-destruct if opened, allegedly to
protect trade secrets. Inside, just put a straight wire from input to
output. With the right marketing and endorsements, people would rave
about how great it made everything sound! :>)
Cheers, Rick.
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 5:15:23 AM

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

"Chel van Gennip" <chel@vangennip.nl> wrote in message
news:352brtF4g2dt9U1@individual.net...
>
> If you do so, don't forget the dropouts, crossover, wow, flutter, hiss,
> hum, distortion, misalignment, speed inaccuracy, frequency curve etc. to
> get a real "vintage" sound.
>

I couldn't help but laugh the first time I saw a plugin for sale that had
sliders named "hiss" and "hum". All I heard for the last 20 years was how
great it would be when we all used computers and didn't have that stuff and
now they're selling us the stuff we used to complain about (and get for
free, BTW). Humans are never happy. It's not a problem of the technology.
It's a problem with us.
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 5:17:55 AM

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

"Scott Dorsey" <kludge@panix.com> wrote in message
news:csh6k0$d56$1@panix2.panix.com...
> Chel van Gennip <chel@vangennip.nl> wrote:
>>On Mon, 17 Jan 2005 11:24:40 +0100, rickymix wrote:
>>
>>> Analog Alternative to Tape? Let's invent it!
>>
>>I realy don't understand the recreation of errors, and the nead to use
>>specific hardware to recreate these errors.
>
> Because they can be useful errors when used creatively.

The people who invented tubes and tape from a technical standpoint probably
saw it as flaws and it definitely qualifies as distortion. It just so
happens it distorted it in a pleasing way and IMO helped some things sound
better than they really did. In fact I think part of the "problem" with
digital is it shows us the truth which sometimes isn't pretty.
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 8:44:10 AM

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

<chris@chris-melchior.com> wrote in message
news:1106033938.552013.190160@f14g2000cwb.googlegroups.com
> I had the pleasure of doing some strings in the best studio in London

> . . . Neve desk, lots of unique old bits of gear, bits of old BBC
> mixers that do unique wierd effects etc. I asked the producer why he
> used tape, and his answer was that he gets a GREATER frequency
> response out of tape than digital, even when running digital at 96k

What's he running, 60 ips?

96k is good to a true and genuine 45 KHz or so. 15 ips is good to about 24
KHz, and 30 nudges that up some but does not double it because there are
other limits to tape high frequency performance than wavelength effects.
Note that 7.5 ips is good to 18-20 KHz and doubling that to 15 only knocks
the roll-off up another 4-6 KHz.

> 24-bit using the most expensive converters there are.

There really is no tape, not even any combination of tape plus Dolby that
can duplicate the 115-120 dB dynamic range of good 24 bit. Of course this is
all moot because of ears, rooms, mics, and speakers.

>He was using
> EQ's to do things at 10Hz and 30KHz on tape, and it made a difference
> to the final sound.

Probably playing the IM distortion that would result as an EFX.

> I know this goes against the obvious first-thoughts on a lot of
> things, like the frequency capabilities of the finished CD's, etc.

Finished CDs are only good up to 22 KHz max, with 20 KHz being a nice clean
real world number. But, analog tape is not about maximally clean recording.
Its an EFX.

> But his results seem to confirm that there is something in what he is
> saying.

Love those EFX!
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 8:47:42 AM

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

"rickymix" <snovak2@earthlink.net> wrote in message
news:1106039704.129497.196080@c13g2000cwb.googlegroups.com

> What about a cd-sized disk made of some easily magnetized material
> which spins around at 30 ips. Record head at 12:00, playback head at
> 6:00, erase head at 11:00. A/D convertors come off the playback head
> and go to the hard drive. The heads don't quite touch the disk, so
> there's no wear and tear.

One could probably cobble something like this together out of a busted hard
drive. The oxide on the platter is probably all wrong, but getting new oxide
on it might not be mission impossible. I suspect you can strip as much oxide
as you want from old tapes if you know the right solvent to use. Spinning it
onto the disc should be possible. You'd also want different heads of course.
Since heads that are mechanically hard enough to spin up loaded would be
tough, some kind of head loading mechanism would probably be required.
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 8:48:41 AM

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

> What about a cd-sized disk made of some easily magnetized material
> which spins around at 30 ips. Record head at 12:00, playback head at
> 6:00, erase head at 11:00. A/D convertors come off the playback head
> and go to the hard drive. The heads don't quite touch the disk, so
> there's no wear and tear.
> It seems something like that could be tweaked to sound like a tape deck
> much more easily than a bunch of digital algorithms.

But what you're proposing is a digital recording system. Just because it's
magnetic doesn't mean it sounds like a magnetic analog recorder! DAT (in any of
its formats) doesn't sound like analog.
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 8:54:48 AM

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

Whoops. I misread.

Nevertheless...

In order to get a reasonable S/N ratio, you need a fairly wide track and a
reasonably thick coating. The former is incompatible with recording on a small
disk, whose total surface area is much, much less than that of a single track on
a 1200' reel of tape.

Assume the track is 1/20 of an inch wide. That would be a total surface area --
for 32' of recording at 7.5ips -- of 720 square inches. A CD offers barely 20
square inches.
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 11:49:53 AM

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

In article <r4OdnQSNHcnbdHHcRVn-oA@comcast.com> arnyk@hotpop.com writes:

> > What about a cd-sized disk made of some easily magnetized material
> > which spins around at 30 ips. Record head at 12:00, playback head at
> > 6:00, erase head at 11:00.

> One could probably cobble something like this together out of a busted hard
> drive. The oxide on the platter is probably all wrong, but getting new oxide
> on it might not be mission impossible.

In 1965, I was working for a company that made telemetry recording
systems. They had a need for a short delay (this was before the days
of digital delays) and in my lab, we built an analog drum delay. We
bought some oxide in a jar complete with binder (don't recall the
source), coated an aluminum drum with it, then ground it smooth on a
lathe. Mounted a couple of tape heads so they were just barely not
touching the drum (alignment and runout were very critical) and
attached a motor. It worked only over a very narrow band of
frequencies due to the gap between the heads and drum, but it did the
job.

Many years later, I saw the unit we built (there was only one) for
sale at a hamfest. I didn't buy it.



--
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
January 18, 2005 1:24:44 PM

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

Arny Krueger <arnyk@hotpop.com> wrote:
><chris@chris-melchior.com> wrote in message
>news:1106033938.552013.190160@f14g2000cwb.googlegroups.com
>> I had the pleasure of doing some strings in the best studio in London
>
>> . . . Neve desk, lots of unique old bits of gear, bits of old BBC
>> mixers that do unique wierd effects etc. I asked the producer why he
>> used tape, and his answer was that he gets a GREATER frequency
>> response out of tape than digital, even when running digital at 96k
>
>What's he running, 60 ips?
>
>96k is good to a true and genuine 45 KHz or so. 15 ips is good to about 24
>KHz, and 30 nudges that up some but does not double it because there are
>other limits to tape high frequency performance than wavelength effects.
>Note that 7.5 ips is good to 18-20 KHz and doubling that to 15 only knocks
>the roll-off up another 4-6 KHz.

My ATR-100 at 15 ips has a -3dB point at 35 KHz. Drops like a rock after that,
though. The high bias frequency has a lot to do with that.

I suspect going to 30 ips won't buy very much, since the head design is more
of a limitation than the tape these days. But it's a real pain in the neck
to swap the machine around and set it up for 30 ips since I have the 2-speed
pad cards so I have never really done any measurements at 30 ips other than
just the usual tone ladder for alignment.

>>He was using
>> EQ's to do things at 10Hz and 30KHz on tape, and it made a difference
>> to the final sound.
>
>Probably playing the IM distortion that would result as an EFX.

Possibly, but more likely it's a matter of a pole at 30 KHz having a very
substantial effect below 20 KHz if the filter is wide.
--scott

--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 1:35:42 PM

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

In article <znr1106050728k@trad>, Mike Rivers <mrivers@d-and-d.com> wrote:
>
>In 1965, I was working for a company that made telemetry recording
>systems. They had a need for a short delay (this was before the days
>of digital delays) and in my lab, we built an analog drum delay. We
>bought some oxide in a jar complete with binder (don't recall the
>source), coated an aluminum drum with it, then ground it smooth on a
>lathe.

3M used to sell the slurry for motion picture labs who would coat film prints
with a magnetic stripe. Magnetic sound never really caught on except for
70mm, though. Technicolor Magnecraft collapsed about six years ago, and they
were getting their slurry from Fidelipac (the old Capitol Audiotape plant
in Winchester, Va). Their shutting down was pretty much the last straw for
Fidelipac.

But you used to be able to call up your tape dealer and order slurry in
quart cans. We used to do a lot of print striping for 16mm in the seventies
and just ordered through Tape Warehouse.
--scott

--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 7:25:08 PM

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

On Tue, 18 Jan 2005 08:49:53 -0500, Mike Rivers wrote:

>
> In article <r4OdnQSNHcnbdHHcRVn-oA@comcast.com> arnyk@hotpop.com writes:
>
>> > What about a cd-sized disk made of some easily magnetized material
>> > which spins around at 30 ips. Record head at 12:00, playback head at
>> > 6:00, erase head at 11:00.
>
>> One could probably cobble something like this together out of a busted hard
>> drive. The oxide on the platter is probably all wrong, but getting new oxide
>> on it might not be mission impossible.
>
> In 1965, I was working for a company that made telemetry recording
> systems. They had a need for a short delay (this was before the days
> of digital delays) and in my lab, we built an analog drum delay. We
> bought some oxide in a jar complete with binder (don't recall the
> source), coated an aluminum drum with it, then ground it smooth on a
> lathe. Mounted a couple of tape heads so they were just barely not
> touching the drum (alignment and runout were very critical) and
> attached a motor. It worked only over a very narrow band of
> frequencies due to the gap between the heads and drum, but it did the
> job.

Sounds like a Binson Echorec.
I don't think the drum has an oxide coating in an echorec, it looked like
it recorded directly on the drum to me, though I could be wrong.

There are also those freaky electrostatic oil can delays that got banned.

Kudos for building one! What kind of frequency response did you get out of
it?

>
> Many years later, I saw the unit we built (there was only one) for
> sale at a hamfest. I didn't buy it.
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 7:25:09 PM

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

In article <pan.2005.01.19.16.27.26.679293@localhost.com> philicorda@localhost.com writes:

> Sounds like a Binson Echorec.
> I don't think the drum has an oxide coating in an echorec, it looked like
> it recorded directly on the drum to me, though I could be wrong.

I thought the Binson was a tape-based unit with several heads, more
than the Echoplex. Maybe that was something else.

> There are also those freaky electrostatic oil can delays that got banned.

No, they got "canned."

> Kudos for building one! What kind of frequency response did you get out of
> it?

I'm supposed to remember after 40 years? Probalby something like
+/- 6 dB 200 Hz to 500 Hz <g>. High frequency response would drop off
mighty fast due to no direct contact between the head and the "tape."
The worst part was the amplitude modulation due to the eccentricity of
the drum, but it only had to dealy a narrow band low frequency FM
signal.

And, yes, I do remember a quart can of slurry. It came with some ball
bearings in it to aid in stirring it up when you "shake well before
using."



--
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
January 18, 2005 9:00:52 PM

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

Paul said:
> I think what the posters are talking about is a gadget to get the
"effect"
of tape recording before feeding the signal into a digital system,
using a
continuous loop, in this case one imprinted on a disk or a drum. Kind
of
like an echoplex without the echo.

Correctomundo. Kind of like a miniature version of what our Croatian
friends are doing by repeatedly using one reel of 2" tape to record
hundreds of different bands. If it was small, cheap, and didn't have
the erosion/friction problems, it would be a neat gadget, especially
for rhythm tracks.

A drum would probably work better than a disk, but the cool thing about
disk would be that the inner tracks would spin much slower than the
outer ones. You could have 15 ips for the inner bass tracks and 30+
ips for those closer to the circumference providing better HF response
and "air". :>)
Cheers, Rick.
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 9:01:55 PM

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

"Richard Crowley" <rcrowley7@xprt.net> wrote in message
news:10uqc5rh4vm1k42@corp.supernews.com...
> "rickymix" wrote ...
> > What about a cd-sized disk made of some easily magnetized
> > material which spins around at 30 ips. Record head at 12:00,
> > playback head at 6:00, erase head at 11:00.
>
> Even with an 8-inch disc, more modest speeds, and track widths
> the size of a Philips audio compact-cassette, you'd get only a few
> seconds of recording length, and the SNR, distortion, etc. would
> be equivalent (or worse) than cassette.
>
> The ideal thing about tape was that it was a convienent way
> to store and use a large AREA of oxide-covered surface.
>
> > A/D convertors come off the playback head
> > and go to the hard drive.
>
> I thought you were talking about an ANALOG recorder.
> As soon as you introduce A/D and D/A converters, you
> have a digital recorder and you're wasting your time
> competing with all the others out there that are already
> better and cheaper.

I think what the posters are talking about is a gadget to get the "effect"
of tape recording before feeding the signal into a digital system, using a
continuous loop, in this case one imprinted on a disk or a drum. Kind of
like an echoplex without the echo.

Me, I liked tape because of what it didn't do, not because of what it did
do. What it did do, in fact, was stuff I worked very hard to avoid.

Peace,
Paul
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 9:05:30 PM

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

Paul said:
> I think what the posters are talking about is a gadget to get the
"effect"
of tape recording before feeding the signal into a digital system,
using a
continuous loop, in this case one imprinted on a disk or a drum. Kind
of
like an echoplex without the echo.

Correctomundo. Kind of like a miniature version of what our Croatian
friends are doing by repeatedly using one reel of 2" tape to record
hundreds of different bands. If it was small, cheap, and didn't have
the erosion/friction problems, it would be a neat gadget, especially
for rhythm tracks.

A drum would probably work better than a disk, but the cool thing about
disk would be that the inner tracks would spin much slower than the
outer ones. You could have 15 ips for the inner bass tracks and 30+
ips for those closer to the circumference providing better HF response
and "air". :>)
Cheers, Rick.
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 10:04:16 PM

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

William Sommerwerck wrote:
> Whoops. I misread.
>
> Nevertheless...
>
> In order to get a reasonable S/N ratio, you need a fairly wide track and a
> reasonably thick coating. The former is incompatible with recording on a small
> disk, whose total surface area is much, much less than that of a single track on
> a 1200' reel of tape.

Since he's talking about only leaving the signal on the disk long enough
to read it back again and send it out the output, the total surface area
doesn't matter. All that matters is the width of the track. With a
3 inch platter, I don't see why the track width can't be 1/2 inch or
even bigger.

As for speed, let's continue to assume that the idea is to leverage off
hard drive mechanics. Hard drives these days normally run at 7200 RPM,
and if the diameter is 3 inches, then the linear speed at the edge
is 1130 inches per second. Hmm, it might not be best to slow it down
a bit.

Actually, since I know little about tape physics, let me ask a question:
what can increased speed buy you? I know it buys better high frequency
response (more bandwidth), but does it also buy anything else? Does it
affect signal to noise ratio?

- Logan
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 10:04:17 PM

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

> Actually, since I know little about tape physics, let me ask a question:
> what can increased speed buy you? I know it buys better high frequency
> response (more bandwidth), but does it also buy anything else? Does it
> affect signal to noise ratio?

The higher the speed, the longer the wavelength of any frequency. This means
that a wider record gap can be used, so that the signal will penetrate the oxide
more deeply, especially at higher frequencies. So a very fast tape with the
right coating and proper heads should produce more output and better S/N ratio.
Anonymous
January 19, 2005 10:07:33 AM

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

On 2005-01-18, chris@chris-melchior.com <chris@chris-melchior.com> wrote:

> I know this goes against the obvious first-thoughts on a lot of things,
> like the frequency capabilities of the finished CD's, etc. But his
> results seem to confirm that there is something in what he is saying.

I wouldn't argue that his results were good, but I'd argue that you
heard eq effects in the 30KHz range, even if you are a hound dog.

If your tape had wider or more continuous frequency response than your
digital deck, there was something wrong with your digital deck.
Anonymous
January 21, 2005 12:50:20 AM

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

Scott Dorsey wrote:

> Same goes for FM recording on tape. It causes more trouble
> than it solves unless you're trying to record frequencies that are lower
> than the medium can handle (which is the case for laserdiscs, VHS Hi-Fi
> and analogue instrumentation recorders that need response to DC).


VHS Hi-Fi works best with some WD-40 on hand, in case of any unwanted
Doppler Distortion.
!