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Author Topic: Stereophile Show report #2b  (Read 3135 times)

Offline mstcraig

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Stereophile Show report #2b
« on: May 13, 2007, 10:42:54 PM »
Continuing my Stereophile show report, for Saturday. Both rooms now have Technics machines which are operating as they should. I never got to hear the one in the Magico room as whenever I stopped by, they were listening to CD's but always busy. Once again, I spent a disproportionate amount of time in the TAD room. It's very hard to get tired of hearing 100K worth of audio gear, no? Anyway, early on in the day I asked Andrew if I could hear another tape. I was told again to stop by later in the day. So, I went down to Ballroom E to buy some software. The big fiasco on this day was having the hotel close the Ballroom at 4PM. Apparently, some yahoo scheduled a reception for this area and the hotel had to clear out all the music vendors by 4:30PM! This would include Music Direct, Acoustic Sounds, Reference Recordings (back after several years' absense) and many others. Marcia Martin of Reference was not at all happy about this, she told me. I'm sure Stereophile will be hearing the music (sic) about this for a long time too! Back to our story. I stopped back in the TAD room at 5:40PM. The show closes at 6PM, yet people just kept gathering and music kept being requested and played. It was kind of funny in a way. The inmates had finally taken over! A little after 6PM, Andrew says he's going to the restroom and motions for me to load up my tape, while yet another CD is playing. This tape is the one I wanted to hear most of all, yet did not want to hear. You see, this recording is one I recorded myself. This is of a group here in Rochester, NY called the Rochester Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra. It's a big band with 20+ pieces and a vocalist. I asked the group to come to my Church in November 2005 so I could try out a microphone system I built myself. My design is based on Ray Kimber's IsoMike. I ended up playing "Come Rain or Come Shine" from those sessions. I was petrified of what people would think, and once again, I apologized before the music started. Bottom line-When it was over, people said it sounded very nice. I was very happy to say the least, and relieved! Tape Project's machinery had a large role in both of my tapes sounding so good, and for that I am very grateful. The only critisism I have is that the rewind and fast forward were sloooow. That's it! My 2 days in New York went by too fast, but I had a nice time. I also left with new (more) respect for what Doc, Paul and the whole Tape Project crew are trying to do. I felt that the various CD's, SACD's and the like all sounded good. But, whenever any tape was cued up and played, whether my own or not, I felt like I could relax and let the music do it's thing-replenish my soul. I feel this is a winning team we are seeing. Yes, these tapes are expensive. But, they will always be in style and be able to be played at anytime in the future, no matter how far out that may be. Try that with anything digital! When I can, my first purchase will be Doc's Seduction preamp modified for both NAB and CCIR. Then, I'll pick some tapes. My congratulations to all for their hard work. Nice job! See you next year.
Craig Sypnier
(Magnepan, VPI, Sumiko, Shure,
Belles Research, ReVox (A-77 and B-77), Scully 280-B, Teac A-2300SD, Nordost)

Offline ironbut

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Re: Stereophile Show report #2b
« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2007, 12:45:01 AM »
Excellent reports Craig! The writers for Stereophile should do so well! Sounds like a major goof in the ballroom. I can't even imagine what Chad from Acoustic Sounds was saying! It's probably a good idea to find a spot that you can sit and spend some time. I usually end up running around and by the end of the day, I'm worthless. I know what you mean about tapes done right. It's hard to imagine that anyone could hear them and not see how much higher it raises the bar.
steve koto
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Offline docb

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Re: Stereophile Show report #2b
« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2007, 09:13:54 AM »
Thanks for the kind words and the very detailed report, Craig.  Glad Andrew was gracious enough to let you play your tapes. Not only brilliant, he is also a super nice guy. Get this - among other things he was one of the Morris dancing champions of Britain in his youth. Carries pictures with him on his cell phone, of him jumping straight up onto another guy's shoulders from a standing start. Quite an interesting character.

I hear you about the fast wind. After using a studio machine it seems kinda slow. In fact the mods we do to the machine make it perceptibly faster than a stock one due to lower friction over the guides. But it's no ATR or Studer. I don't know of any prosumer level machines that fast wind like the studio ones. Of course some of those studio reel motors probably weigh almost as much as a whole 1500. The RS1500 does, however, beat the pants off a Nagra. I think I aged an extra year waiting for one of those to rewind at RMAF in 2004. We eventually moved a played reel to another machine just to rewind it.
Dan "Doc B." Schmalle
President for Life, Bottlehead Corp.
Managing Director - retired, The Tape Project

Offline ironbut

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Re: Stereophile Show report #2b
« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2007, 09:13:01 PM »
Here's a couple of impressions from Head-fi.com members that visited the show.

When they played the Dave Alvin track from the reel to reel tape produced by the tape project it was worth the price of admission right there. I am now off to spend some cash on a reel to reel.

TAD, et al. The TAD speakers were amazingly powerful and required an array of amps to power them. That room was HOT, both literally and figuratively as a result. The sound was all-encompassing and beautiful at the same time. The best moment was when they played a reel-to-reel tape of Dave Alvin from The Tape Project on the Project's modded player with Bottlehead electronics for the tape stage. Analog bliss was achieved with some of the most meaty-feeling music you can imagine. Great stuff, even though the combination of other components is unknown to me.

steve koto
 Sony scd 777es(R. Kern mods)> Vpi Aires>Dynavector XX-2mkll>Bent mu>CAT ultimate>CJ premeir 140>Magnepan 1.6qr(Jensen xover)Headphone Eddie Current Zana Deux>AT ad2000,HD800 ,Metric Halo ULN-2 (battery powered),
 HE Audio Jades

Offline rbwtapeinterlink-Bob

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Re: Stereophile Show report #2b
« Reply #4 on: August 23, 2007, 03:42:48 PM »
Craig, You've written a good piece regarding the show and I am grateful. I am also a love of jazz and big band jazz is one of my favorite things to listen to. I still listen to Stan Kenton, Dizzy Gillespie, McCoy Tyner, Gil Evans, Maria Schneider, Sam Rivers and many others. I am certain you did an outstanding job recording the set. My hat is off to you because I have at least some idea what's involved in the acoustics, miking, etc. Thank you for sharing with us.

Bob Williams
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Offline rbwtapeinterlink-Bob

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Re: Stereophile Show report #2b
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2007, 01:59:49 PM »
Craig, I've not heard from you of late. What is happening with your recording the what you are doing with your church. I'd love to hear more about that venture. I look forward to hearing from you. Thanks much.

Bob W.
Bob W. (African American) VPI, Ref Standard Grado, Denon 103r, Threshold, DecWare tube pre and Classe pre amp, Jolida tube phono pre amp, (Peter Gunn) modified Magnapan 1.6, Tascam 32-2B & 42B tape decks, Parasound belt drive CD transport, Pacific Valve tube DAC, VPI  TT, various upscale cables.