Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Gswitz

Old four track holding tape

Recommended Posts

I had a Yamaha and a Vestax. Used my ART SG multi-fx unit for comp, eq, and rev.  I have the songs I did on them transferred to digital. Still am surprised what I did with what I had!! But it was all about commitment. Because I knew the more I rolled that tape across the heads I was degrading the high frequencies, I made do. I also practiced a lot before I started to roll tape.

 

I remember doing a lead that I had practiced over and over again and again over the span of a few days. When it came time to record I felt it just wasn't happening. So I did over 5 or 6 re-takes (which was a lot for me back then) and still wasn't happy with what I did. I mean I was p'd off! But knowing that I had to stop rewinding and doing it over or I would loose fidelity. So I quit. Came back next day and listened to it and was wondering why the hell I thought it wasn't happening!! Glad I stopped when I did. It was  a great take! I also learned something that day.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

GSWITZ-Were you actually able to make the transport work on this unit?

That would be very surprising given that the belt probably dried up in all these years.  Even if you would've kept using it up until now I'm sure you would've had to replace the belt by now.  Curious.

 

😀

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
55 minutes ago, Johnbee58 said:

 

....replace the belt by now.  Curious.

 

 

Me too!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The belts are hard to come by for this machine. Tascam still sells belts (except a lot of their famous 4 tracks built in the 90s (the 424, 424 MK II, Exc, Exc). But don't see many old MT2X belts flying around much.

This might help a bit. Even though its related to the MT1X is still pertains.

Let me know how it works out. I still use multiple machines several of them on a daily basis because I do transfer work (convert 4 track cassette/8 track cassette/2 track, 4 track, 8 track reel to digital).

FYI- Spell check doesn't do to well with the word "Cassette".  am I really getting that old ? xD

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The mt2x isn't mine. Its my friend's. 

When i made the recording in December of this band...

http://gswitz.blob.core.windows.net/tunes/20181216_Roadhouse.html

The guitarist was talking about how he'd love to do tape because it changes how he feels during his performance.

I mentioned it to my buddy and we wanted to try, so we broke out his 4 track to see what we could do. The answer was unfortunately nothing since we couldn't get it working.

I don't think given my budget that i can spend money on the tape deck for the flight of fancy.

Edited by Gswitz
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Gswitz said:

The mt2x isn't mine. Outs my friend's. 

When i made therecording in December of this band...

http://gswitz.blob.core.windows.net/tunes/20181216_Roadhouse.html

The guitarist was talking about how he'd love to do tape because it changes how he feels during his performance.

I mentioned it to my buddy and we wanted to try, so we broke out his 4 track to see what we could do. The answer was unfortunately nothing since we couldn't get it working.

I don't think given my budget that i can spend money on the tape deck for the flight of fancy.

Yep listen to the recordings before (very nice).

You might be able to open her up and see if she can be fixed. Im leaning towards a belt (Capstan belt) though.

The guitarist is right, it does change how recordings are made and gives us inspiration beyond words. Though so does "Start New project" in the digital domain.

 

About 10 years back I went listening through a lot of my older tapes and realized my recordings were very clear, but for one reason in particular..                           Less instruments clogging up the mix. Yes I bounced tracks but even good engineers can make bounces sound awesome (destructive but awesome).

Once I had unlimited tracks at my disposal I became a pig. 10 vocals, 6 guitars, stacking drums. I had to go back to basics (like the good ole 4 track) and remember an engineers worst enemy... "Too much goin on"

So for that alone I think the 4 track is amazing.

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've still got my 2 x Fostex D90's in the loft gathering dust & spiders webs

Ever tried slaving them together for 16 track recording? 😡

I remember buying additional hard drives for them and at that time, the onboard OS would only support discs up to 4.3Gb

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

These old 4-tracks have a certain cult appeal, for the reason mentioned by Chuck E. (forces simplicity), and for sonic reasons as well.

After all, Our Favorite DAW has that PC module baked right in so that if we wanted to, we could make every track sound like it was recorded on tape.

BTW, JohnBee, in my experience, belts for '80's decks don't dry up, they disintegrate by turning into a sticky goop that is very difficult to remove (which must be done thoroughly). I tried doing a plain old stereo deck of mine and it would have gone just fine but for the goop all over everything.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, Starship Krupa said:

BTW, JohnBee, in my experience, belts for '80's decks don't dry up, they disintegrate by turning into a sticky goop that is very difficult to remove (which must be done thoroughly). I tried doing a plain old stereo deck of mine and it would have gone just fine but for the goop all over everything.

I stand corrected then.  I didn't know exactly how but I knew they degraded somehow.  I only realized it recently after watching a guy named Techmoan on YouTube.  He buys up vintage audio gear and tries to restore the machines back to working order.  Interesting.

I also might be thinking about an old stereo system I bought back in '87 or so.  It was a Kenwood rack system and the speakers had duo woofers.  In 2005 I gave it to a friend and as I was taking the speakers out to his car I heard a thud inside one of them.  It was actually one of the woofers that had fallen through into the box because the rubber-ish material that surrounds the outer diameter had actually degraded and dried up after the 18 years I had it.  It literally became an ashen, dried up mess on the bottom of the cabinet.

😀JB

Edited by Johnbee58
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/8/2019 at 7:25 PM, Gswitz said:

How much does double speed cassette increase fidelity?

It'll give you about an extra 2K of high end. Plus it just seems to thicken things. It's hard to put your finger on it, but you'll notice it.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had a few different 4-tracks back n the day and there was a music store around town that rented out several more, of which I probably used all of them. The best I ever used, and I owned this one too, was the Audio Technica RMX64. DB Sound Engineering Magazine also referred to it as the best they had ever seen. It ran at 3 3/4 ips with Dolby C (DBX was lousy back then, trust me), had 6 input channels, four of them with XLR, two fully parametric EQ bands on each channel, and two headphone outputs so you didn't need a headphone amp to record a friend. It also had actual VU meters, two effects sends per channel, and a very flexible digital transport that was also incredibly quiet so punch-ins were absolutely noiseless. This thing sounded so good that I actually got rid of my TEAC A3440S 4-track reel to reel and my mixing board as well. I often wish I had kept this unit just for old time sake. It took up a lot of space though. It was around 2' x 2' and weighed 50 pounds. Biggest 4-track cassette multi-tracker you ever saw.

Audio_Technica_RMX64.jpg

Edited by Will Hackett
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For me I still use a Tascam midi studio (rebuilt twice in its long history) for the odd client that needs mix/mastering for double speed cassette, but have to say it still can produce a beautiful finish/analog result. It cost me around £2000.00 quid when I bought it new, but I've kept it working through the years due to the quality. Regarding belt replacement I have rebuilt several open reel & cassette recorders and always found Ebay to be a good source, sometimes the best way is bulk buying various sizes although specialist belts/parts can be rare and expensive .

I hope you get this this up and working and I do get the calculator/maths story but it will be rewarding in the end' 1414774129_Tascam688.jpg.7d23d546a98720d9b67359f6780518c9.jpg

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been convincing myself for years that I'll find a use for this again one day...

img_3mQXEbKWDRvuRlv_r.jpg&f=1 

Don't know why because I always hated cassette tapes. I could never feel totally comfortable listening to one - always waiting for the sound to go all wobbly as the tape removed itself from the cassette and wound itself around whatever was in the way.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is it battery operated? Could make a good field recorder for interviews, collecting sounds from a forest, a zoo, kid's playground etc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is the old Yamaha I had. But I didn't have the desk part with it or patch bay. Just the tape deck and mixer.

 

gdbtve5ozlvtjjxm8h8y.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Grem said:

This is the old Yamaha I had. But I didn't have the desk part with it or patch bay. Just the tape deck and mixer.

 

gdbtve5ozlvtjjxm8h8y.jpg

My friend and part-time writing partner, Kurt, had that same unit. He had the patch bay too. I'm not sure how many versions they had of that machine, but Kurt's only ran at 1 7/8 speed. I was surprised at how good it sounded for not being a double-speed unit. He was a keyboard player and laid a midi stripe on one track while mostly just using the remaining tracks for vocals. He did some really nice work on that machine.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One of the coolest things I got just before I went in the box, was the Fostex DCM100 / MixTab:

image.png.dd2d7a29c3bdf8595913c4d1f915f3a7.png

I'd take the individual track outputs from my MT-8X into this, run the MIDI sync I'd recorded back through my PPS100 and I could record my mix automation in Cakewalk.

Everything was automated on this: pan, volume, gain, mute, EQ, aux sends etc. It wasn't motorised, but had LED indicators to help you set up the MixTab to match any saved scenes.

The whole mixer section was cleverly based around 8 x I2C controlled car stereo chips, which is what kept the cost down.

Nowadays, I use this as a sub mixer for all my racked MIDI modules.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/13/2019 at 4:30 PM, Will said:

Is it battery operated? Could make a good field recorder for interviews, collecting sounds from a forest, a zoo, kid's playground etc.

No mains power only. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...