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I had no idea you could buy a new cassette deck.

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Ilusndweller, Apr 7, 2021.

  1. Ilusndweller

    Ilusndweller S.H.M.F.=>Reely kewl. Thread Starter

    Location:
    Columbus, Ohio
  2. peskypesky

    peskypesky Forum Resident

    Location:
    Texas
  3. jusbe

    jusbe Modern Melomaniac

    Location:
    Auckland, NZ.
    On account of the rather poor sonic performance, it's not been that well received by TapeHeads generally. But it's interesting to see, nonetheless.

    Are you going to buy one?
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2021
  4. Sterling1

    Sterling1 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Louisville, KY
    Dolby B noise reduction is what brought Compact Cassettes into the Hi-Fi arena. Dolby no longer sells Dolby B noise reduction circuitry, so I wonder what sort of noise reduction is within the Tascam and how does a Dolby B tape sound from the Tascam?
     
  5. shug4476

    shug4476 Forum Resident

    Location:
    London
    Dolby C or go home.
     
  6. bever70

    bever70 It's all about the soundstage

    Location:
    Belgium
    Never used Dolby (B & C) on my decks, hated it.
     
    saturdayboy, joeriz, BruceS and 9 others like this.
  7. rfs

    rfs Forum Resident

    Location:
    Lansing, MI USA
    I never used Dolby C because my car tape decks only supported Dolby B, which sounded fine to me.
     
  8. Bruno Primas

    Bruno Primas Forum Resident

    Location:
    Wisconsin
    If the azimuth is not set properlyfor the play/record head, Dolby B will always sound terrible. Once you figure out how to adjust the head, Dolby B is MORE than usable. Nakamichi's are so good because the top models AUTOMATICALLY adjust the head for best playback.

    I don't think I've owned a deck that the azimuth was aligned properly when I received it. They all need adjustment.
     
  9. Front Row

    Front Row Finding pleasure when annoying those with OCD.

    Location:
    Chicago IL
    vwestlife likes this.
  10. Front Row

    Front Row Finding pleasure when annoying those with OCD.

    Location:
    Chicago IL
    The old cassettes I recorded with Dolby B sound fine in the new Tascam. You might have to adjust tone controls such as reducing treble. Although some of the "tapes" are sounding weathered from play and age.
     
    Sterling1 likes this.
  11. luckybaer

    luckybaer Thinks The Devil actually beat Johnny

    Location:
    Missouri
    Boy, do I feel foolish for buying a vintage tape deck and restoring it. I could have saved time and money with one of these, right?

    Do these really sound that bad? How much better is my DR-2?
     
    bluesky likes this.
  12. nosticker

    nosticker Forum Guy

    Location:
    Ringwood, NJ
    Stopped all use of Dolby years before I quit cassettes for good.


    Dan
     
    Tim 2 and bever70 like this.
  13. vwestlife

    vwestlife Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Jersey, USA
    TASCAM and TEAC use National Semiconductor's Dynamic Noise Reduction (DNR) as a playback-only substitute for Dolby B NR. It is demonstrated in this video:

     
    bluemooze, Archguy and Sterling1 like this.
  14. elvisizer

    elvisizer Forum Resident

    Location:
    San Jose
    iirc from a techmoan youtube video, there's only one manufacturer of tape mechanisms/heads in the world now . . . .and their heads are terrible. So based on that I would not be surprised if this is actually really bad despite being a tascam.
     
    Hardcore likes this.
  15. McLover

    McLover Senior Member

    Location:
    Athens, Tennessee
    Good enough for survelliance, dictation, and church sermons at best. Too high wow/flutter numbers for music. And less durable and lower performance than a 1971 Advent 201 or a 1970 Fisher RC-80.
     
    MLutthans, Eigenvector and CDV like this.
  16. McLover

    McLover Senior Member

    Location:
    Athens, Tennessee
    DNR is not very good NR. Not encode/decode. Worked acceptably for AM radio use.
     
    MLutthans and nosliw like this.
  17. McLover

    McLover Senior Member

    Location:
    Athens, Tennessee
    Dolby S or go home. Dolby C was seldom ever implemented correctly, due to cassette deck manufacturers getting sloppy on Quality Control, and releasing machines which were not really Dolby C in terms of electrical and mechanical performance and stability. Dolby S, Dolby Laboratories demanded machines meet standard and perform properly.
     
  18. Classic Car Guy

    Classic Car Guy "catch me if you can..."

    Location:
    Northwest, USA
    it seems like they are nowhere near the sound quality of the early 102. The head was a bit different from the newer ones.
     
  19. Ray Blend

    Ray Blend Shirtless Bear Fighter

    Location:
    The Midwest
    Whether you like Dolby or not, buying a deck without it limits your options of what you can play back on it. Severely.
     
    nosliw and McLover like this.
  20. shug4476

    shug4476 Forum Resident

    Location:
    London
    Well blow me over. I never actually had the good fortune to hear Dolby S when I still had cassettes, but Dolby C astounded my teenage mind at the time!
     
  21. McLover

    McLover Senior Member

    Location:
    Athens, Tennessee
    I used Dolby B for cassettes. As I never owned a Dolby C machine which had Dolby C work correctly. And the Dolby C test tapes were hard to get.
     
  22. rebellovw

    rebellovw Forum Resident

    Location:
    Prescott, AZ
    I browse ebay occasionally for Pioneer CTFs - as I really miss my old one - but I just cannot justify getting one.

    I'll stick with:
    - CDs
    - Vinyls (haha)
    - Reel2Reels
    - NAS

    I do miss the old days of recording a cassette for the car or friend - going through the ritual - setting the blue input meters, demagnifying the heads, cleaning the heads (denatured alc) and dropping the needle - on a freshly opened TDK, Maxell tape. That was fun.
     
  23. Ray Blend

    Ray Blend Shirtless Bear Fighter

    Location:
    The Midwest
    Yeah I had bad experiences with Dolby C, so I stuck with Dolby B until metal tape became affordable - then went with NR turned off.

    Metal tape with no NR sounded very good, even on lower end decks.
     
    Mr. Bewlay, black sheriff and McLover like this.
  24. vwestlife

    vwestlife Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Jersey, USA
    Single-ended noise reduction can work surprisingly well, and has the main advantage that it can be used with any audio source without needing any special encoding that may sound unpleasant when played without the matching decoding. DNR can achieve up to 10 dB of noise reduction at higher frequencies, the same as Dolby B NR. It's based on Philips' Dynamic Noise Limiter, which was their preferred solution for their invention of the Compact Cassette, but Mr. Dolby had better marketing and favorable licensing terms -- at least until his company decided to stop licensing their noise reduction systems in 2014.

    And for every person who really liked the way Dolby NR worked and used it religiously, there always seems to be two more people who hated the way it "muffled the sound" and never used it, even on decks that did offer it. So I wouldn't be surprised if some people who are outraged that it's no longer available didn't practice what they preach -- just like the automotive enthusiasts who are upset that very few cars are available with a manual transmission anymore, even though the last time they actually bought a new car with a stick-shift was over 20 years ago...
    In my tests I measured the actual wow & flutter to be around 0.10% WRMS, the same as many decks from the '80s and '90s. And as for "less durable", many vintage decks are a nightmare to fix due to the complexity of their mechanism and old belts turning to sticky goo. The Tanashin mechanism has far fewer parts to go wrong, and the belts are incredibly easy to replace.
     
    Archguy likes this.
  25. elvisizer

    elvisizer Forum Resident

    Location:
    San Jose
    yeah those guys! that's who techmoan was talking about.
     

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