Is It 1986 Again?

Discussion in 'Project Depot' started by andrewsrea, Feb 18, 2020.

  1. andrewsrea

    andrewsrea Well-Known Member

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    Long standing project is to convert what I can from my old recordings master tapes to computer digital. First up, Sony Pulse Code Modulator (PCM) 501e + Sony Betamax tape system, for a state of the art 16 bit 41khz sample.

    After 17 years of being stored, everything fired up and the tapes look good. Getting ready to run and see if they still make noise!

    PCM & Beta box.jpg PCM 501e and Betamax.jpg
     
  2. andrewsrea

    andrewsrea Well-Known Member

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  3. Chapstick_Addiction

    Chapstick_Addiction Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    Can you even make it stop blinking 12:00?
     
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  4. Pratteman

    Pratteman Well-Known Member

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    I wish it was 1986 again....good times, lol

    Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk
     
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  5. MichaelR

    MichaelR Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    This should be fun.
     
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  6. andrewsrea

    andrewsrea Well-Known Member

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    Yes but it thinks it is still 1986.
     
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  7. andrewsrea

    andrewsrea Well-Known Member

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  8. andrewsrea

    andrewsrea Well-Known Member

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    I think the tape is too old. Just not tracking - audio is hosed.
     
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  9. Pilipete_Townshend

    Pilipete_Townshend Well-Known Member

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    Love the gadgets man. That Betamax was $475.00 in the 80's~!
    This is my setup at home. few of them from the 80's and amp was designed in the 50's retro restoration.
     

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  10. tonray

    tonray Well-Known Member Supporting Member+

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    I remember some modern day finance 'guru' admonishing the crowd at a seminar I attended for the excesses of the 80's. The only excess I recall was working too many hours for too little reward. You can keep 1986. At that point I got up and quietly left, but not after taking an excessive amount of Danish from the buffet while everyone was facing the scam artist in stage.
     
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  11. fullonshred

    fullonshred Well-Known Member

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    I am truly sorry for your setback. Don't chuck them just yet, maybe a new idea or approach will emerge.

    forgive my humble suggestion that you almost certainly have already addressed if possible. Is there any way to adjust the heads? I know this is far more complex than an audio cassette recorder. In the past adjusting the heads on one of those cleared up some really bad audio. Again I know am probably mentioning something you already have covered if it can be done. I posted it on the narrow slim tiny possibility it might be of use.
     
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  12. andrewsrea

    andrewsrea Well-Known Member

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    It has a tracking adjustment on the front and a bias adjustment as well. No help. I've cleaned the heads. I am going to see if I can boost the signal.

    I am going to take a blank tape and record something on it and see if it plays back. If it does, the magnetism of the old stuff is weak. Perhaps I can boost it.

    My alternative is baking the multitrack reels, transferring them to computer and remix in Studio One.
     
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  13. Manodano

    Manodano Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    Bake the tape. I'm sure you can google around and find out how. I've done it with several old reels of 1/4" tape. It's easy and worked great. I'm sure some betamax guru on the web can tell you exactly how.
     
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  14. andrewsrea

    andrewsrea Well-Known Member

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    Thanks! I've baked 1/2" to 2" before on metal reels in gas ovens. Everything is plastic in the Beta cart and my oven is electric, which operates on large AC antennas (the heating coils), which makes a perfect de-magnetizer. :(
     
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  15. Pilipete_Townshend

    Pilipete_Townshend Well-Known Member

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    Flashback to 1986 almost next 2-3 cities carries Vans shoes. Grab a pair for $12.50 and it says Made in USA. Levis 501-551 $17.00 100% cotton all Made in USA. When you wash 'em it stands up by itself.
    Same thing walking on a Hi-fi store, Music stores etc. as today its all mountain of gold.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2020
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  16. redman

    redman Well-Known Member Supporting Member+

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    I love old tech gear I used to have all kind of things I'd accumulated over the years but alas my ex got it all only to give it away or to throw it out. I'm left with only this little playback/recording set up and a Blu-Ray player. But it was worth it to now have that peaceful easy feeling the Eagles sang about. :rolleyes: The only old school gear I have here is the Line 6 Pod in this picture I use it a lot.

    81290fb8be89bad50359d8d24df94fed.jpg
     
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  17. Pilipete_Townshend

    Pilipete_Townshend Well-Known Member

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    My friend has a way of recording the tracks on hi-fi VHS which is actually pretty cool for we didn't really have enough resources to buy professional recording gears. I remember he bought a Roland Jupiter 8 polyphonic keyboard. It was around 3750.00 at that time. Took him years to pay it off but it was worth every penny in the end. The sound was astronomical.
    After a week or 2 I bought the Marshall and my mom helped me out on the financing. That was a blast!
    Joe_Red_Marshall_Enola_small.jpg
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2020
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  18. BatUtilityBelt

    BatUtilityBelt Well-Known Member

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    I hope @andrewsrea is able to get those tracks back! I lost a lot of material on a hard drive over a decade ago and still haven't reproduced most of that material. I also have a bunch of old multitrack tapes for my Tascam 38, and I plan to remaster some of them when I have time, but they might not all be viable anymore. For those who have only ever had digital formats, don't take it for granted. Make backups you trust, even if you don't think most of your tracks are special.
     
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  19. andrewsrea

    andrewsrea Well-Known Member

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    I have a modified Tascam Model 38. My next stop is to figure out how to bake the tapes in an electric over, without de-magnetizing them. If you don't do that, the take goo's up or flakes apart.
     
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  20. Mickey

    Mickey Gandalf the Intonationer

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    Bake them inside a cast iron pot (with lid?)
     
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