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RCA “Sound Tape” cartridge and 1/4-track reel introduction dates

Filed under: cartridges,history,reels — 2007-11-26 by Richard L. Hess — Last Edit 2012-10-18 by Richard L. Hess

David Dintenfass kindly sent me an article from the October 1959 issue of Popular Electronics which says, in part, that RCA plans to have 65 titles in the stores in their new cartridges by Christmas 1959. Other manufacturers were shown to be making compatible players. (more…)

Studer A80 Covers — protection and more work area

Filed under: archive operations,infrastructure,Studer A80 — 2007-11-19 by Richard L. Hess — Last Edit 2011-03-07 by Richard L. Hess

A simple, 5-sided box solves two problems:
–Protection of the Studer A80
–Providing more work surface

Studer A80 cover


Success with squealing Shamrock 031 tape

Filed under: project notes,Racal Store 4DS,Tape Aging — 2007-11-08 by Richard L. Hess — Last Edit 2009-11-06 by Richard L. Hess

I spent days trying to get Shamrock 031 to play without much success. Since this is an Ampex factory budget brand (probably non-spec premium tape) I thought that it might be suffering from Sticky Shed Syndrome. I baked it for 12 hours and it still squealed. I then tried my usually successful cold playing technique and it still squealed. Cold playing has worked successfully with 3M 175 and Sony PR-150.

I was getting rather frustrated and since it was a four-track tape and one of the techniques that is supposed to reduce squeal is to play the tape faster, I dragged out my Racal Store 4DS instrumentation recorder which has a 75,000 Hz bandwidth at 15 in/s and played it at 15 in/s and digitized it at 88,200 samples per second. After slowing it down 4x and ending up with a 10 kHz bandwidth (which I subsequently truncated to 5 kHz since there was no useful information above that, but lots of noise–same as the non-squealing portion of the real-time transfers on a Studer A810).

 Racal Store 4DS playing formerly squealing Shamrock tape


Cross-point screws take two: JIS vs. PoziDriv

Filed under: Nakamichi Dragon,tools — 2007-11-26 by Richard L. Hess — Last Edit 2007-11-26 by

I received the following in an email from a person only identified as Ross. I thank him. He sent me the following in reference to this post. concerning Philips and PoziDriv screws as used on Nakamichi Dragons and other Japanese equipment. I, too, have a set of Hozen drivers which I obtained from (more…)

How to play 4-track 1.875 in/s tapes…

Filed under: archival practices,Racal Store 4DS,Sony APR-5000 — 2007-11-21 by Richard L. Hess — Last Edit 2007-11-21 by

I received a query from a gentleman in Europe about 1.875 in/s 4-track tapes. He was frustrated in finding a good machine for transferring them. Apparently, they have many of these tapes. Here are my suggestions.

Perhaps the easiest answer is to find a Studer-Revox C274 with low speed options. They were made.

Two other options. (more…)

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