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Senior Member
Username: elwoodblue

Post Number: 1848
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Monday, March 14, 2016 - 4:54 am:   Edit Post

For Deadhead Sound geeks;
There's some great reading here and many tangents.
SHMF thread
I'll put up some links as I wade through the thread.

I've found hundreds (if not thousands) of fantastic pics and recollections on Steve Hoffman's site.
I'll admit I hadn't heard of him before the internet.Does anyone here have some stories or info that would make me feel smarter? :-)
Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 4820
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Monday, March 14, 2016 - 6:57 am:   Edit Post

This is indeed a great site. I have browsed it before in the past.
The tape machine in the picture is a Studer A-80 variation.
Thanks for posting this !

I have worked on Studer, Ampex,MCI & Otari studio machines and still put them into use for transfer and archival work.
Here are some handy relavent links ;

Sonic Regards !

Senior Member
Username: mario_farufyno

Post Number: 1126
Registered: 9-2008
Posted on Tuesday, March 15, 2016 - 2:57 pm:   Edit Post

Wow, love those links. Thanks for sharing, Wolf!
Senior Member
Username: jazzyvee

Post Number: 4947
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 - 3:46 am:   Edit Post

Hi Wolf you might be the right person to advise me here. I have some 1/4" reel -to - reel masters that are from a recording in did with my band around 1978 and they have been stored in my house in the original boxes in a plastic bag since that time.

I contacted the recording studio that did the original sessions about transferring them to digital. He recalled they were either mastered on a Fostex or Teac reel to reel in those days. But his advice was don't do anything with them until they have been baked otherwise you could lose the coating and ruin the recording. There is a company in London who could do it but that it could be expensive and no guarantee of recovering the recordings fully.

What do you know about that process and what would you advise?
Senior Member
Username: jacko

Post Number: 3742
Registered: 10-2002
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 - 8:27 am:   Edit Post

Good question Jazzy. I also have 1/4" reels from the late 70's of my first band that I'd someday like to get onto CD so any advice would be great.

Senior Member
Username: elwoodblue

Post Number: 1851
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 - 9:40 am:   Edit Post

I need to digitize an Entwistle interview,
...what do you set the oven to? ; )
Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 4827
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 - 10:15 am:   Edit Post

Hello friends , in answer to Jazzy and Jacko regarding reel to reel tape transfer and restoration there are many questions and variables in this regard.
I have been doing tape transfers in various levels of the process and am a member of both the Ampex List Forum and the Studer List Forum and am extremely fortunate to be able to confer with highly esteemed folks who are also forum members . Richard Hess, Jamie Howarth of " The Plangent Process , Steve Puntolillo of the Sonicraft A2DX Labs are Ampex list members as well and are operating large facilities engaging in this process.

Jay McKnight of MRL can supply you with a proper CALIBRATION TAPE


There are various ways to go about this and various levels of expense to be considered .

1) A good prime directive regarding in handling of the tape is " DO NO HARM "

2) Know exactly what the tape base is ACETATE , POLYESTER or MYLAR.

3)What is the manufacturer of the tape and the designation number
Such as AMPEX 456 or 3M 111 or AGFA PEM 468 .... ... etc ... .

4) Know what the tape width is 1/4 "or 1/2" or ? Speed ;30ips/15ips/7.5ips , etc ... ... ...

5) What is the track configuration ? FULL TRACK , 1/2 track( 2 track) stereo, 1/2 track mono. 4 track stereo , 4 track multi track in one direction , etc, etc

6) If the tape is MYLAR and sometimes polyester but NOT acetate tape base such as 3M 111 . it is likely that baking will be needed to avert the ill effects of what is know as

Get a decent high end analog to digital interface with great converters and put the digital transfers a a storage hard drive and NOT your OS system drive.

If you cannot afford the top method such as Plangent process there is software such Sonic Solutions " NO NOISE". WAVES restoration bundle and various programs from ISOTOPE that are less expensive to do.

There is much territory to cover on this topic and I have just scratched the top, I can go on and on about this but need to eat breakfast now , I will continue later :-)

Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 4828
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 - 10:35 am:   Edit Post

Elwoodblue , do not use your food oven in your kitchen for this !!!!. :-)

Many folks who are doing this at home are using food dehydarors used just for tape baking
such as this ;

Read my links and it will help guide you as far as temperature . 120 -130 F , is what I use . I am backed up on projects on this and need to get my act in faster gear as well

Senior Member
Username: elwoodblue

Post Number: 1852
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 - 11:22 am:   Edit Post

Thanks for the morning primer,I'll go through some links tonight.
I'll stick to sourdough bread in the kitchen then
(I did bake a strat neck in there once).
Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 4829
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 - 12:18 pm:   Edit Post

I love Sour Dough , with cream cheese , avocado and turkey with some hot peppers on the side . Yummy ! That was breakfast.

Back to work now ... ... ...
Senior Member
Username: pauldo

Post Number: 1607
Registered: 6-2006
Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 - 3:31 pm:   Edit Post

I have one of those Nesco Dehydrators and I have 1/4" reel to reel tapes!

I no longer have a reel to reel machine and not sure what is on all of the tapes.

One of the tapes does have Smash Your Head Against the Wall; Whistle Rhymes; Rigor Mortis Sets In; Mad Dog and Too Late The Hero on it. :-D

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