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If I wanted to buy a 2 track tape machine, what would you suggest? Ampex?
Old 7th August 2008 | Show parent
Gear Nut
🎧 15 years
I wouldn't. 4 tracks on 1/4" is a compromise you don't need when mastering.
Old 7th August 2008 | Show parent
Gear Maniac
Guruceta's Avatar
🎧 10 years
So If you get one of these cool machines... Can you sync them with your DAW via world clock, MTC or anything else?
I'm sure it's an easy question to answer but I'm from the digital age and know nothing about tape recordes though it'd be great to learn some more!
Old 7th August 2008 | Show parent
Here for the gear
🎧 10 years
thanks, David.

So I'm asuming then that the only way to go is at least:
1/4" - 2 track - 15 ips... as a Studer A80
Old 11th August 2008 | Show parent
Gear Nut
🎧 15 years
Which two track deck? Depends on your budget. In the USA I'd highly recommend an ATR102 from ATR Service. It could set you back $11,000 but the deck can easily be switched over to a 1/2" with a new head block and 1/2" guides. Takes about two minutes. I wouldn't screw around with consumer decks. There's none that I know of that can record at +9 operating level and have any kind of headroom left. In fact, I couldn't swear they can even record at a +6. These decks are full of noise as well.

If you can't swing the ATR, you might look at the prosumer Otari MX5050. There's still parts for these decks. A used Studer might be an option but parts are very expensive and are getting scarce. A prosumer TASCAM BR20 might be another option, and they have plenty of parts for these decks in Montebello.

A Revox B77 is another option, as they, in practical use, were quieter than the A77 and have far better meters, etc.

But do not expect as good a recording compared to the AMPEX ATR 102.
Old 11th August 2008 | Show parent
Lives for gear
rob S's Avatar
🎧 10 years
here's my two cents,
these tape machines arent lke cassette decks, where you turn them on and
press record and get to it.
they need to be aligned.
you kinda gotta check the bias with every batch of tape
to keep them optimized.
you really should learn how to do this to reap the benefits of your investment.
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