Maybe a little off topic but you could always record from the cassettes to hi-fi VCR. I use the Sony CD recorder and it makes my vinyl sound exactly like the vinyl but through my CD player.
Vinyl, the final frontier...
Avantgarde horns, 300b tubes, thats the kinda crap I want... :D
VHS (or, yes, Beta) HiFi audio is indeed excellent - in many respects the ultimate consumer analog hifi format. Audio was recorded as FM, via the helical scan (rotating) VCR heads... broad, flat frequency response (even at "SLP" speed) and close to 90 dB dynamic range. The biggest drawback is tape quality issues that can cause dropouts - some folks also complain about "head switching" noise rom the HiFi audio tapes... FWIW, I don't find it objectionable. YMMV and all that rot, though :-)
There were a number of "higher end" VHS HiFi recorders designed to be used for audio and video recording... these have adjustable audio input level controls (rather than just using automatic level control to set recording levels) and peak reading level meters of some sort. I have a Zenith that we bought new in 1986 (from Stereo Discounters!) which has - and continues - to serve us well for audio and video recording (not too much of the latter any more, needless to say).
Here's a fairly recent (2005) interview with Allison and his early partner in crime, Edgar Villchur, from Stereophile.
Villchur, sadly, passed away last year.
Last edited by mhardy6647; 02-09-2012 at 06:10 PM.
all the best,
That's a nice one!
I note with some amusement and bemusement that the fluorescent display is identical to that on my ol' Zenith. Same OEM, I guess(?).
all the best,
I think that RA Labs factory closed about 2 weeks after I passed through, in 1994 or 5. I'm not anxious to see those relatives again anyway.
The rotating head is the thing. It results in effective tape speeds of up to 80 ips rendering tape saturation moot.
Better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt. - Old English Proverb
"It's easy to get lost in price vs performance vs ego vs illusion." - doro
"There is a certain entertainment value in ripping the occaisonal (sic) buttmunch..." - TroyD
"Death doesn't come with a Uhaul." - Dennis Gardner
Rebuilding Maggie 2-ch & Amazing 2-ch... Building 2-ch "wall"... Figuring out the HT
I found a nice JVC S-VHS HiFi VCR in the basement today whilst gathering wares to take to the Westford antique radio fleamarket next weekend :-P It is not the same as the one above... but it's similar, with a flip down panel and full audio controls. The display is different - newer, I am guessing.
Further details as events warrant.
all the best,
I'd like to suggest trying to find a Pioneer Ct -W 606DR or Ct- W616DR cassette player. It has a built in DAC and digital noise reduction system. Elite also had versions of these players. My 616 does a very nice job with old tapes - seems to freshen them up a bit. I have a few hundred tapes that I made back in the day. Bootlegs, radio concerts and other goodies that just can't be duplicated. My favorite old cassette deck was a Tandberg that a friend owned. Didn't need noise reduction it recorded so well. I still have both a HK CD-191 and Onkyo TA-R240 deck that I rotate in my system.
Roy Allison is alive and well and frequently contributes to the Allison Group at Yahoo. My Allison Fours are still my main system speakers. None finer...
Last edited by DeadFeat1; 02-11-2012 at 05:44 PM.
Don't forget to enjoy the music...
A little over a year ago I picked up the Sony TC-WE475 you mentioned, for pretty cheap via Amazon. I have about a hundred cassettes recorded with dbx224 noise reduction, from the late 70's thru the late 80's. The cassettes were just going to waste and I'm never going to re-create all the music I had on cassettes. This deck works and sounds fine for my purposes, and my dbx224 still works too (bought it around 1980 or so), so I now have thousands of songs I wouldn't otherwise have (and I bet the sound quality, while not up to good CD standards, is better than most of the MP3's, satellite radio services and other compressed stuff that is so prevalent today.
Actually with good analog sound if owning good equips and tapes.
I still have 3 decks:
Nak CR-3A 3 heads (1988-1990)
Yamaha KX-R730 (Auto Reverse) 3 heads (1990-1991)
Alpine AL-61 (1985)
All need belts, so I just bought belt replacement kit for the Nak off the bay. At this rate, might as well put the Yammie and Alpine on the market. Problem with these decks are they need to be used regularly, otherwise the belt will melt away...I'll keep the Naks handy since I have tons of good tapes from back then.
I am sorry, I have no opinion on the matter. I am sure you do. So, don't mind me, I just want to talk audio and pie.
I adored my Teac Z-6000 cassette deck of the late 80's. Built-in dbx pro NR as well. In fact, it was my last cassette deck before moving on to my Teac X2000R reel to reel.
Source: C.E.C. CD-3300 CD Transport
DAC: Benchmark DAC/PRE
Linestage: Placette Audio Passive
Power Amp: Parasound HCA-1500A
Speakers: Harbeth Compact 7ES-3 Monitor
Stop dissecting and start listening. - Steve in Arizona
Over 2500 for a used Dragon! Right! Me thinks someone has too much CASH!
HT-Basement system #2: RTi-A3s, CSi-3, RTi-4s, PSW 12, Sony BDP-S1000ES, Denon AVR 2807 (Onkyo TX-SR 805 System #1 HT AVR)
Office Two Channel: LSi-7s (Nakamichi CA-5, NAD 214 [or, Adcom GFA-545], Pioneer BDP51fd, HK HD990)
Vintage Polks: Polk Monitor 5As, Monitor 10As, SDA-2Bs (Jolida JD-303, Jolida Music Van)
Shape of Polks to come: LSiM series
About a year ago I picked up a Denon DRM-800A for cheap. It had been bought by a church back in 1991 and sat in the box all wrapped up and never used. The Foam wrapping was actually stuck to the cabinet. It took some cleaning but it looks brand new and sounds brand new. I haven't used it much but today my daughter wanted to listen to a kids music cassette. I am sure this is not a high quality recording but I was floored by how good it sounded. The female vocals were silky and the speakers almost disappeared.
I have quite a collection of tapes stored away that I should pull out. Every time I listen to this deck I am amazed. Tape may have seen it day but it was some good days.
Polk RTA11TL (RDO198-1, XO and Damping Upgrades)
Denon: DRA-835R, DVD-2910, DRM-800A; Monster HTS3600-MKII, Grado SR-225i
Denon AVR-888, Polk: RM7, PSW10
Denon: DRA-825R, DCD-660, DRM-700A, DRR-780; Polk: S8, Monitor 5A & 5B, TSi100; Pioneer CT-6R, PL-530; Ortofon OM5E
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