TP-028, Nat Adderley's Work Song is now available

Author Topic: Disscusions  (Read 13726 times)

Offline mikel

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Re: Disscusions
« Reply #15 on: April 29, 2008, 09:53:18 PM »
Well since we are stirring the pot.

What I want to say is that if someone's standard RS1500, or any other standard R2R machine for that reason, outperforms his CD playback, there is a much higher urgency to seriously upgrade ones CD playback. All the absolute fantastic recordings you are missing that are available on CD. After that there is always time to start cleaning up your R2R playback.

Arian.



Arian,

i must disagree with you assuming i read your comment correctly. i think you are saying that any stock RTR deck has lower overall performance than good CD playback. Format comparisons and a desire to discover exactly how good RTR performance can get is what pulled me into RTR.

I have a stock RS-1500 and i would say on 15ips tapes i have it does most musical things similar but different than my SOTA EMM Labs CDSD SE and DAC6 SE. the RS-1500 is more 'continuous' and 'life-like'......the EMM combo has more dynamics and does space better.

I also have a stock ATR-102 which is clearly better than the EMM Labs combo when playing those same 15ips tapes. OTOH neither RTR is in the league of vinyl in my system.......yet. once i get into the repro electronics we will see......

there is simply lots more data on a good 15ips tape than any consumer digital format. even though the digital does many things well it misses the 'whole picture' to some degree. it's those damn gaps!

just trying to do my part to stir it up a bit.

Mike
« Last Edit: April 29, 2008, 10:04:14 PM by mikel »
Mike Lavigne

Offline ironbut

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Re: Disscusions
« Reply #16 on: April 29, 2008, 10:48:32 PM »
Man, if I had a nickel for every high $$$ digital disc system owner who needed assistance removing their jaw from the floor after listening to my TP rig,.. I've been demoing the TP tapes for a year now,(wow, can that be right?) and I naturally pay attention to the reactions of folks that have what I consider to be top drawer gear. Several with EMM gear and the latest was the APL NWO player that 6 Moons is falling all over themselves praising. The owner had heard my rig a few times before and wanted to hear it in his system. People had been listening to the NWO for several hours and I couldn't say from listening to unfamiliar music if it was better than the EMM CDSD/DAC 6 that he used to have. Then I hooked my Technics/Repo Amp up and people started to OOh and AHH and running to get their buddies to check it out. I played the Robert Cray cut (the newer demo tape so kindly loaned to me by Paul) for the owner of the NWO. It didn't take long before he looked at me and said "that's it". I knew exactly what he meant by "it". Unfortunately, the designer/builder of the NWO was there too and heard all the commotion. He wasn't real happy that his creation became an "also ran" . You could tell he was waiting for folks to fawn over his genius.
steve koto
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Offline dwilawyer

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Re: Disscusions
« Reply #17 on: April 29, 2008, 11:36:49 PM »
For the record, the current member count is 207. Paul has expressed that it might be useful if folks who are lurking introduce themselves here, as someone suggested early on in the lifetime of the forum.

Well so much for introducing ourselves, which was a great idea by the way.  The thread has sunk into one of those golden ear arguments that people can tell the difference between a $1,000 CD player and a $10,000 one.  I own a high end Esoteric transport and D/A converter and would venture to say that no one on this forum, even the professionals, could tell the difference between a good $1.000 CD player and a $20,000 one in a blind A/B test.  I am willing to put my player on the line to prove the point.  All you need to play is to put up a Studer or ATR 102 and every piece of tape you own. 

Travis

Offline Tubes n tapes

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Re: Disscusions
« Reply #18 on: April 29, 2008, 11:57:20 PM »
Ahh.. spicy discussions. I guess that is what Jay wanted to achieve when he started this thread.

When I mentioned the standard RS1500 and other standard R2Rs, I should have said 'other standard consumer R2Rs', because my statement indeed would not be true for many of the professional Ampex, Studer and Telefunken machines.

With all respect for the RS1500 (mechanically that is), the standard unit makes a pretty sloppy copy of the original feed. People may like those colorations, which is fine, but you cannot say it sounds 'good' as in a good reproduction of the original.  Ironbutt's modified and 'tubified' RS1500 is obviously in a very different league than the standard RS1500.

I take my analog tape very seriously, but the same goes for my digital playback. I'm very familiar with the EMM combo, which performs extremely well on (multi channel) SACD. On redbook CD it doesn't justify its price tag.

What we are missing is an honest comparison. A modern recording that is mastered both in analog and in current state of the art digital. That would be real interesting because a properly dithered modern digital mastering doesn't have any 'holes' in the information flow.

I'm in no way trying to undermine our tape hobby, but my engineering side is always keeping track of the objective side.



Arian Jansen.

SonoruS Audio.
VP of technology of the Los Angeles and Orange County Audio Society (LAOCAS).
ESL/OTL builder and modest Studer/ReVox collector.

Offline jgbeam

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Re: Disscusions
« Reply #19 on: April 30, 2008, 07:22:11 AM »
The CD vs rtr topic is interesting, but since there will only be 10 TP tapes per year, and maybe a few Quinton tapes, it would also be interesting to discuss the improvement a Tape Project machine might produce on playback of commercial issue 7.5 or 3.75 ips tapes, of which there is an abundant supply on ebay.  I have seen very few comments addressing this.  Would it not be similar to recent improvements in vinyl playback of 40 year old pressings?  What potential is there in these old tapes? There will never be a source of new consumer rtr machines, but there seems to be plenty of old ones out there that could be upgraded, if not to TP standards, at least to higher standards than the original machine.

Jim Grant
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Offline jcmusic

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Re: Disscusions
« Reply #20 on: April 30, 2008, 10:01:39 AM »
Ahh.. spicy discussions. I guess that is what Jay wanted to achieve when he started this thread.

Well not exactly, but close. I did not intend to start a war of sorts, but just wanted to spice up the participation a little. Things seemed to be a little slow and I am still trying to learn more about our hobby.
I hope I did not offend anyone, that was not my intention. Although this is an interesting thread I am more interested in the tape and machine aspect, than the CDP vs whatever. In my opinion my CDP sounds more than adequate for me, now if I can get my tape to sound better than my vinyl rig; that would be outstanding.

Jay
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Offline Tubes n tapes

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Re: Disscusions
« Reply #21 on: April 30, 2008, 10:53:25 AM »
Quote
it would also be interesting to discuss the improvement a Tape Project machine might produce on playback of commercial issue 7.5 or 3.75 ips tapes,

Jim,

In my article of how to convert a B77/PR99 to a TP machine on the LAOCAS webpage http://laocaudiosociety.net/tech.html, I'm including a few simple but very effective improvements in the playback electronics that would also be valid for every other speed or track arrangement you would want to use.

The total modification as described in the article optimises the machine for both TP tapes and standard 7.5 ips NAB tapes.

Depending of how good your vinyl playback is, this may get you a long way in matching or exceeding it on a very modest budget.
Arian Jansen.

SonoruS Audio.
VP of technology of the Los Angeles and Orange County Audio Society (LAOCAS).
ESL/OTL builder and modest Studer/ReVox collector.

Offline jgbeam

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Re: Disscusions
« Reply #22 on: April 30, 2008, 01:17:27 PM »

Jim,

In my article of how to convert a B77/PR99 to a TP machine on the LAOCAS webpage http://laocaudiosociety.net/tech.html, I'm including a few simple but very effective improvements in the playback electronics that would also be valid for every other speed or track arrangement you would want to use.


Arian,

That paper is so clearly written and illustrated that I would be tempted to make such a mod if I had the machine for it.  I have an early A77 but it appears that it is not a good upgrade candidate.  I'll leave things well enough alone and let doc do his thing on the RS1500.  Thank you for the advice.

Jim Grant
Jim Grant, CT:  BH Technics RS1500 (en route), BH-built Tape Seduction, Rega Planar 3 + Sumiko Blackbird + Bellari VP129, Magnum Dynalab FT 11, Nakamichi CR-1A, Oppo DV-970HD, Alesis Masterlink CD recorder, Jolida SJ 202A, Paradigm 11SE MkII.  Cables - yes.

Offline docb

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Re: Disscusions
« Reply #23 on: April 30, 2008, 03:46:52 PM »
Quote
What we are missing is an honest comparison. A modern recording that is mastered both in analog and in current state of the art digital. That would be real interesting because a properly dithered modern digital mastering doesn't have any 'holes' in the information flow.

We went a step further than that with Jacqui's recording. It was recorded simultaneously in high res digital and to a 2" 16 track A827. The digital recording was mastered in the digital realm and became The Color Five CD. The tape was mastered in analog and went onto The Number White.

I also have an 15 ips analog transfer of the high res digital master.

I'll let you guess what I prefer.
Dan "Doc B." Schmalle
President for Life, Bottlehead Corp.
Managing Director - retired, The Tape Project

Offline Tubes n tapes

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Re: Disscusions
« Reply #24 on: April 30, 2008, 04:16:51 PM »
Very interesting. That is actually one of two TP albums I do not have on CD as well, while that must be one of the best analog/digital comparison items available. I'll get it right away.

I assume the analog and digital multi tracks are identical, from an input point of view that is. Are the mixes substantially different?
Arian Jansen.

SonoruS Audio.
VP of technology of the Los Angeles and Orange County Audio Society (LAOCAS).
ESL/OTL builder and modest Studer/ReVox collector.

Offline docb

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Re: Disscusions
« Reply #25 on: April 30, 2008, 05:01:10 PM »
Actually the mixes on many songs are different because a lot of overdubs on the digital were done in different locations. We did new overdubs in a single studio session, onto the 2" for the Number White. And there's also a few different songs on each album. At least a song or two are straight from the tracking session on both albums. Michael would remember what's what. I'm gonna guess maybe Blue Moon is the same take on both. Unfortunately Here's to Life on Color Five is a take from a different session than the one on Number White.
Dan "Doc B." Schmalle
President for Life, Bottlehead Corp.
Managing Director - retired, The Tape Project

Offline ironbut

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Re: Disscusions
« Reply #26 on: April 30, 2008, 06:26:51 PM »
Hey you guys, this thread's on fire! Good to see a little spirited debate (especially when we're all in the same choir). Regarding the 1/4 track 7.5 ips prerecorded tapes, I'm working on getting the most from these. Anyone who knows my track record won't be holding their breath. I'm real slow when it comes to these things. But, I don't give up very easily either.I won't go into details here, but for now I feel confident that the playback of better older tapes will be equal to or slightly better than a good vinyl set up. And I think whether it is equal/slightly better will depend a lot on what you listen for.
Before the Tape Project I was a vinyl guy. But, I have to admit that the sound of the better CD/SACD and 24/96 (DVD-A or downloads) has come a long way. Maybe it was the decades of defending vinyl (when CD's were just awful) but just a hint of digital glare is all it takes to send me running for an lp. So, considering this bias, I won't be making comparisons to digital formats anytime soon.
So, keep an eye out for a long, rambling post in the Prerecorded Tapes forum this summer.
steve koto
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Offline jgbeam

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Re: Disscusions
« Reply #27 on: May 01, 2008, 03:49:25 PM »
I guess the fire's out.  Didn't want the day to pass without a single post on the forum.  Nothing to add - just wondering how much better "Way Out West", now spinning on my $149 Oppo DVD-970HD, would sound on a kilobuck CD player, or. better yet, on a TP mastered tape on a TP upgraded RS1500.  Sounds pretty good on the Oppo, though.  Can't hide great music completely no matter what your gear is.

Jim Grant
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Offline ironbut

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Re: Disscusions
« Reply #28 on: May 01, 2008, 04:15:02 PM »
I don't have the CD but, the Analog Productions lp is one of the best they've done. Awesome bass sound!
steve koto
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Offline mikel

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Re: Disscusions
« Reply #29 on: May 01, 2008, 09:25:04 PM »
I guess the fire's out.  Didn't want the day to pass without a single post on the forum.  Nothing to add - just wondering how much better "Way Out West", now spinning on my $149 Oppo DVD-970HD, would sound on a kilobuck CD player, or. better yet, on a TP mastered tape on a TP upgraded RS1500.  Sounds pretty good on the Oppo, though.  Can't hide great music completely no matter what your gear is.

Jim Grant

'Way Out West' on the AP SACD played on the EMM Labs SE combo is excellent. The AP 33rpm reissue is a good deal better in every way. the AP 45RPM Lp is on another level entirely as is the 45rpm Lp test pressing. i agree Steve that the bass on this recording is particularly articulate and this recording is overall an excellent recording with outstanding clarity and a low noise floor. a great demo disc for sure in any format.

i would love to have the opportunity to play a TP version and compare.
Mike Lavigne