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Re: Cassettes [message #95468 is a reply to message #95460] Sun, 03 April 2022 09:23 Go to previous messageGo to next message
gofar99 is currently offline  gofar99
Messages: 1726
Registered: May 2010
Location: Southern Arizona
Illuminati (4th Degree)
Hi, Contrary to some thoughts...the plastic (or Mylar etc) portion of a tape is pretty durable. The oxide coating is not so durable. Heat and humidity will cause the binder to deteriorate. This leads to shedding of the oxide. No oxide equals no sound. Properly stored tape has an extremely long life. The last figures I saw for it was over 100 years and it was thought to actually be longer. The length of storage was not so much an issue as how it was first played after storage. Usually this entailed a gentle rewind followed by playing on a well maintained player at minimal tension. I personally have numerous reel to reel and cassette tapes that are over 50 years old and they play as good as they did back then. One thing to remember that except for commercial r-r tapes many made back then on home machines were rather marginal by modern standards. My favorite cassette recorder was an Harmon Kardon that would do as much as 75 db S/N and respond 30HZ-22K. At that time the individual machines were tested and signed off by Harmon engineers. To be sure you paid for the quality. Budget machines then were lucky to go 50-12k at 60db S/N. New budget machines are equally bad regardless of their hyped specs. So if you have old tapes that were stored well they could be just fine.

Good Listening
Re: Cassettes [message #95470 is a reply to message #90140] Sun, 03 April 2022 09:46 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Madison is currently offline  Madison
Messages: 289
Registered: June 2017
Grand Master
That was a fascinating share, gofar99. I'm bookmarking your post for later. I like to watch How It's Made on the Science Channel, and your remarks reminded me of that.
Re: Cassettes [message #95479 is a reply to message #95470] Mon, 04 April 2022 08:51 Go to previous message
Wayne Parham is currently offline  Wayne Parham
Messages: 18321
Registered: January 2001
Illuminati (33rd Degree)

I'm with you on that, Bruce. Ever since the late 1970s, I've had a very good cassette deck, one capable of treble extension past 20kHz. I was amazed how many decks couldn't even reach 15kHz. But better decks were out there for a little more money. And not crazy money either, just a little more. Well worth it, in my opinion.

Even in the early 1980s - after I got a reel-to-reel deck - my cassette recordings were as crisp and high-quality as any other media I had. It was a bit surprising, given the difference in tape speeds. But with a good deck, one can make very high-quality cassettes.

I had an Onkyo three-head cassette deck in the 1980s. It made incredible-sounding tapes, many that I still enjoy today. Nakamichi also made great tape decks back then, and I considered getting one. But the Onkyo I had was superb, and so a Nakamichi purchase just wasn't justified.

Ten or twenty years ago, I bought a Sony three-head deck that is equally capable. Sony made cassette decks until very recently, so you can still buy 'em in good shape. Just make sure it's a three-head design and has adjustable bias.

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