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Getting into Tape (Read 22711 times)
Lonely Raven
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Re: Mini-Decfest (Tapefest) this Spring?
Reply #50 - 06/07/14 at 14:03:27
 

Maybe I should bring some of my "found" tapes for you. The dates on them start in the late '50s and work through to early '70s. Though very few are original, and some originals have even been recorded over!

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Lon
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Re: Mini-Decfest (Tapefest) this Spring?
Reply #51 - 06/07/14 at 16:03:18
 
Have fun gents!
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Donnie
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Re: Mini-Decfest (Tapefest) this Spring?
Reply #52 - 06/08/14 at 01:10:58
 
I just got back from the "Tape fest". My first impression of the tapes that I listened to was that the music had a rounded off sound. It is hard for me to explain, maybe it doesn't sound as harsh as digital, softer around the edges?? I did notice that there was a small loss of the very high end of treble, maybe just the source material?  
I don't know if reel to reel is for me, mostly for the fact of the unavailability of music that I like to listen to. It sure is dynamic though.
The ride home was interesting also, 80 miles in a downpour will keep you on your toes! As with everything, good gear will always pull you through.
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Mini-Decfest (Tapefest) this Spring?
Reply #53 - 06/08/14 at 17:05:50
 

I'm glad you had a safe ride home, Donnie. I was worried about you since even my drive home (about twice the distance) had a couple "pucker" moments when I did standing water on the highway, in high winds.


I heard some good tapes at Steve's. We shared a couple of our finds. I thought it interesting that you said the highs sounded rolled off, because when I first listened to Steve's tapes (different tapes from last night) I thought they sounded a bit boosted and edgy on the high end, and just figured that was the tapes.

I think Steve is still on the learning curve with setup and adjustment. I thought it was neat that he was using the Otari 12 input as a preamp - I think that may have added some weight and density to the music, but rolled off those highs as you were saying.

I think still, what really wins me over is the lack of smearing and jitter of analog. There is just something about tapes that transcends what digital can do. Granted, I've still not put the DirectStream up against my tape player with good master tapes; I think that will be the final showdown for me.

Also, knowing Steve, I'm betting that as he works out what he likes and doesn't like with tape, he'll start building tape preamps to get the decks where he wants them to be - to have that detail and density that makes tape so magical.

Lastly, one thing that Steve mentioned that I'm finally getting through my head - Tapes aren't every day listening, they are "special occasion" listening. Steve said like having a 20 year Scotch rather than your usual. This, and the fact that I swear that the copy of a tape Steve set me up with sounded *better* than the original(!) - I still think tape has it's place, I just need to let myself accept how and what that is. I'm even tempted to dump a DSD to tape and see if that helps bring the density to life that DSD is missing compared to tape.

Sorry, rambling again. Steve and I talked into the night, theorized, and bounced ideas off each other. I have so much I'm still digesting and incorporating into my "audio world view" after last night. I need to find some blank tapes and run some experiments of my own!
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Donnie
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Re: Mini-Decfest (Tapefest) this Spring?
Reply #54 - 06/08/14 at 18:41:26
 
LR,
Yep, the wind was, shall we say, challenging! The run from Morton and Lincoln was hairy. My refusal to slow down to under 80 was part of the problem. I passed everyone and hit every raindrop.
While the tape sounds wonderful, until I can buy something that I would normally listen to, I'm out.
While I appreciate great sound, my main focus is listening to music, songs that I love.
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Lon
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Re: Mini-Decfest (Tapefest) this Spring?
Reply #55 - 06/08/14 at 20:15:02
 
Donnie wrote on 06/08/14 at 18:41:26:
LR,
Yep, the wind was, shall we say, challenging! The run from Morton and Lincoln was hairy. My refusal to slow down to under 80 was part of the problem. I passed everyone and hit every raindrop.
While the tape sounds wonderful, until I can buy something that I would normally listen to, I'm out.
While I appreciate great sound, my main focus is listening to music, songs that I love.


Donnie, I'm glad you made it safe and sound. My last trip to and from Texas in August '13 I spent a few hours in fierce thunderstorms with high wind and though I wasn't going as fast as you most of the time, it was a bit hairy. But danger is exciting, something motorcyclists know.

I'm with you: there's little on tape I want to listen to at any reasonable price. And I don't want to have 'special listening' sessions, I want to listen to music I love and I want it all to sound good when I do. I've got that with my lps and cds and my system and I do thank the universe for it every day.
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Brian
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Re: Mini-Decfest (Tapefest) this Spring?
Reply #56 - 06/09/14 at 00:13:23
 
How was the Tapefest?
Fun & Educational?
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Lonely Raven
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Re: Mini-Decfest (Tapefest) this Spring?
Reply #57 - 06/10/14 at 04:59:19
 

I ran out of time in my previous post, I also wanted to say a big Thanks! to Steve and Devon for being excellent hosts as usual. We were comfortable and well fed.  :)

I have to say, after Donnie and Deuce split, Steve and I just started throwing out theories and thoughts about sound, rooms, speakers, tape, digital - basically everything that what we do revolves around. It was a really great chat, and I wish I had more time and wasn't so tired...I could have talked all night, it was such a great vibe and transfer of thoughts.

Thanks again, Steve. I look forward to the next mini-event should you decide to go down that path.

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deucekazoo
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Re: Mini-Decfest (Tapefest) this Spring?
Reply #58 - 06/10/14 at 13:42:31
 
Yes it was fun and educational.
Everything sounded great. I have had my R2R for a while but don't really have any master tapes. I have a few I have created from records and CDs but this was a first time really listening to master tapes. It is just cool looking when you sit in the sweet spot, see the two Otari R2R sitting on each side next to the speakers with the rack of toys in the middle, and the Mystery amp glowing at you. Steve had the DM947 hooked up for speakers. They sounded really good. At one point I actually got up to see if they were playing. They had such a huge sound stage I though Steve hooked up the electrostats when I was not looking. The soundstage and dynamics of tape is something you just need to hear for yourself. You could pin point each instrument and player. The one that stood out for me was a musician playing the xylophone. I could physicaly see him moving his hands side to side in front of me hitting each bar with his mallets. Just something you need to hear.
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Brian
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Re: Mini-Decfest (Tapefest) this Spring?
Reply #59 - 06/13/14 at 03:26:55
 
deucekazoo quote:
"The soundstage and dynamics of tape is something you just need to hear for yourself."

Wonderful!  
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Steve Deckert
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Re: Getting into Tape
Reply #60 - 06/21/14 at 22:54:51
 
Thanks to those of you who stopped by. It's always fun to get together with fellow enthusiasts! We do listening appointments throughout the year so anyone reading these posts is welcome to contact me via e-mail: zen@decware.com and set up a time to come over for a listen.  

Steve  :)
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