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Thinking about 1/2 inch. Where to start? Recorders, Players & Tape Machines
Old 8th September 2006
  #1
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Thinking about 1/2 inch. Where to start?

So I'm looking to dump to 1/2" to warm up things and I wanted some advice on the "how to" and the "how much."


What should I keep in mind, how much to spend and which machine should I consider?

Thanks
Old 8th September 2006
  #2
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It depends on how deep your pocketbook is and how commited you are.

An Ampex ATR 102 1/2" is still going to bring as much as $4k ...or more.
Studers are rarer in the U.S, but they aren't cheap either.

You could obtain an Ampex AG-440, refurbish it and convert to 1/2" but it'd still cost you over $2k and take some effort.

I have seen a few MCI JH-110s that were 1/2", but not many.
I know guy that has an Otari MTR10 1/2" but he rarely uses it.

If you are going to go to the trouble and expense you might as well go all the way and get an ATR 102 or Studer.

I own a pristine Studer A810, but it'd cost me well over $2.5k to convert it.
I'm not going to do that anytime soon!

Danny Brown
Old 8th September 2006
  #3
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I just got a 3M M79 with new Saki heads for free..
they';e are cheap machines out there though..
My friend has a modded otari that sounds great..cost $1500. I think
Old 8th September 2006
  #4
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I'd consider the Otaris to be the lowest on the 1/2" analog deck food chain, but I'd use one if it was the only one available.
I have never been an Otari MTR10 fan myself.

The MCIs are next up the ladder if only because they sound pretty beefy.
They are hard to keep running properly at the age they are all getting to be.

I say go for it and do it right.
Get an ATR120 if you can.

I know where a 1/2" ATR104 is, but it needs serious attention and the heads are gonna' be too expensive. I'm not sure that it has been fired up in ten years. they are REALLY complex decks, so there could be MANY problems.

If I was going to invest the $2.5k it'd be in heads for my Studer A810.
I'd prefer an ATR if I had a choice. European guys really like the Studers though.

Danny Brown
Old 8th September 2006
  #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redddog View Post
So I'm looking to dump to 1/2" to warm up things and I wanted some advice on the "how to" and the "how much."


What should I keep in mind, how much to spend and which machine should I consider?

Thanks
Forget it and go with 1/4" 15 ips CCIR. Quieter, better lo end and much much cheaper.

BTW be careful of older decks like the 440 as they won't bias high output tape like GP-9.

You can record once maybe, but you'll have a tough time erasing even if you get the bias high enough......

Mark
Old 8th September 2006
  #6
Lives for gear
 

Oh yes... remember that a 1/2" deck is not going to saturate very easily if that is what you want to go for.
The 1/4" 15 ips machines will do this easier.
1/4" 30 ips is a bit harder to mash things onto

I personally don't and have never purposely overdriven two track.
Multi track is another thing entirely!
I have hit it as hard as possible on occasions.
The result is pretty cool!

Remember that I have stated that I ran +8 over 185 nwbr on 456 (which was really designed for +6) for years and even ran at +9 over 185 nwbr on 456 when 996 came out. It sounds OK for rock if you know how to do it without F' ing things up.

Danny Brown
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