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Jim

Is Reel to Reel really that good?

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I recently purchased The Wonderful Sounds of Christmas and dubbed it to reel on a brand new old stock 7" reel of Maxell XL I on the very first play. Aaahhh... man... sounds so good. There is some analog magic that occurs when recording this way. Love the sound. 

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Highly recommend this record. Some of the newer records have suspect pressing in my opinion. Too much noise. My wife and I were blown away at the quality of this recording.

20161123_161733.jpeg

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Just been reading a little of this and it reminded me of years ago.

 

A RTR and LPs, I have neither anymore, gave them to a relative, like a dummy.

 

To me the only thing to me that ever came close to th LP sound was an LP recorded on tape.

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35 minutes ago, dtel said:

Just been reading a little of this and it reminded me of years ago.

 

A RTR and LPs, I have neither anymore, gave them to a relative, like a dummy.

 

To me the only thing to me that ever came close to th LP sound was an LP recorded on tape.

dtel,

You really need to come by the next time you are in New Orleans!!! I can play for you a Master Tape that will just destroy any LP you have ever heard before!!! Until you hear a really good tape on a high quality machine with all the mods, you really just don't know!!!

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I have never heard a Master Tape, will have to do that one day. Back then you had Lp's, cassettes or tape, so about all the average person had was LP's and tape was the next best, or equal. I did buy some new music on tape but it was hard to find and surely not Masters, I would think the internet helped that ?

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4 hours ago, dtel said:

I have never heard a Master Tape, will have to do that one day. Back then you had Lp's, cassettes or tape, so about all the average person had was LP's and tape was the next best, or equal. I did buy some new music on tape but it was hard to find and surely not Masters, I would think the internet helped that ?

dtel,

Actually there are several companies making master dubs and some real nice sounding tapes, a bit pricey no doubt...

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1 hour ago, canyonman said:

dtel,

Actually there are several companies making master dubs and some real nice sounding tapes, a bit pricey no doubt...

 Very pricey, indeed!

 

Some of the pre-recorded 7 1/2ips tapes from that era were pretty good, believe it or not.

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7 hours ago, BamaMike said:

 Very pricey, indeed!

 

Some of the pre-recorded 7 1/2ips tapes from that era were pretty good, believe it or not.

I have a bunch of them and they don't even come close!!! However there are a few that sound decent enough to listen to...

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14 hours ago, canyonman said:

I have a bunch of them and they don't even come close!!! However there are a few that sound decent enough to listen to...

 

 Agreed!

 

I don't have many as they are hard to come by in decent shape. I do have Black Sabbath's first release and I was shocked at how good it sounded. It was a gift to me 30+ years ago and I NEVER played it until a few months ago. LOL I have some Herb Alpert as well that sounds pretty good. I've never been a fan of prerecorded tapes of any kind but every now and then I get surprised. 

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I know this is an old topic but I thought I would share some thoughts on this.
I have been acquiring 2 track 15 ips tapes of 50s, 60s and 70s jazz recordings, most of which are available digitally, that have more life, fun and unfortunately noise than their digital counterparts. I also have several recent LP pressings of the same tapes. IMHO the tape is better than the LP but in most cases. The digital is better than both with respect to noise and fidelity, but not as good dynamically. In some cases the separation and sound image is strikingly better on the tapes. 
Just yesterday I pulled the trigger to acquire a Studer A810 from an older audio engineer who lovingly cared for his equipment and insisted that his Studer tech completely service it before I took delivery. I am looking forward to learning how to adjust the deck to optimize the playback for each of the tapes.

Thanks to everyone for a terrific thread.

Brad

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I like the fact this thread is still alive! 

 

Dynamics is definitely a factor with tapes. Would love to hear more about your Studer once you take ownership.

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On 9/14/2016 at 6:53 PM, Marvel said:

I still have my Teac 4 track, Tascam DAT, and Alesis ADAT. Hardly any time at all on the two digital decks. I can't bear to part with them...-Bruce

I'm not sure why, but of all the electronic gear including speakers, nothing says "cool" more than having a RTR in your setup.  B)

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26 minutes ago, minermark said:

Wealth of info at one of the few service guys still around.

http://reelprosoundguys.com/

 

I've been considering these guys for some work. Distance/shipping has me concerned. I may go for it but it would be nice to find someone within driving distance which means .... Alabama (HA HA... never happen!), Georgia or Tennessee. I've heard of a couple. One in Nashville and one near Atlanta. Neither sounds as promising as the Reel Pro Sound Guys though.

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I recently took in two decks for repairs......two hours from my house each way.  $90/hour labor only.  He charged $405 to clean harden grease from pinch rollers/linkage and reassemble.  The tech estimated $450-$560 to fix a loose tension arm on the other deck.  I declined that repair as the deck is 43 years old and not worth the money.

 

I made inquiry to two other techs who said the grease issue should have been a 1-1.5 hour job.  He billed me for 4.5 hours which coincidentally happened to work out to the amount of my deposit:huh:

 

Before hiring him I mentioned the lack of testimonials on his web page.  He replied that he was a McIntosh approved service shop and that should be enough. 

 

On the positive side the deck he repaired works.  The other I was able to find the right angle on the tension arm and put a spacer to hold it where it should be.  Not a proper repair but it didn't cost $500 either:)

 

Check references and if you must ship pack carefully and keep your fingers crossed.

 

 

 

 

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16 minutes ago, Tarheel said:

He replied that he was a McIntosh approved service shop and that should be enough.

Iv been dealing with this kind BS attitude toward the public at large my whole life in Calif.

Stick up their azz describes it also.

Berkley/Frisco freaks are the worst. 

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Unless you were bringing in a McIntosh reel to reel that would be pretty meaningless to me.  

Some people are a little too proud of themselves.

 

I wish I'd heard some good recordings on reel to reel.  All I have ever heard were recordings made of over the air broadcasts my Dad made in Vietnam.  I also have a bunch of recordings of my grandparents and ourselves that we sent over as kids.  Lousy sound quality but priceless content!   I need to get those digitized so I could share with the rest of my family.  

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