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Author Topic: What Is The Provenance of Our Tapes?  (Read 1031 times)

Offline High and Outside

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What Is The Provenance of Our Tapes?
« on: January 09, 2024, 02:12:19 PM »

Most of the information on our process for making the tape albums has been covered in three other posts:
What Is a Tape Project Album?
What Is A Master Tape?
What Is This Stubb-U-Sonic Process Anyway?

This post will address a couple of points not made in the other posts.

You may hear talk about the provenance of some tape. That basically means what source was used for the copy, how many generations away from the original is it, and how were those copies made, and by whom.

One of the great things about tape is you can copy it. One of the things that makes it hard to answer the provenance question is you can copy it.

If you just pick up a reel of tape, you can't figure this out by looking at it. You can't always tell very precisely by listening to it unless you have the original tape handy for comparison. There isn't a simple way of testing it. If you're hoping that you can do a frequency analysis, like we do with digital files to see whether they are upsampled from a lower sample rate source, you will be disappointed. The only way you can have any confidence in any assertion about provenance is by dealing only with trustworthy people.

We have stated elsewhere that we use the original masters. Some people have a hard time believing we can go to the tape vault of a record label and check out original master tapes. And in a way they are right, because in so many cases the labels decline our requests. The titles you see in our catalog are the result of knocking on a lot of doors and being turned down a lot of times, but occasionally getting a yes. We make our pitch very strongly. And sometimes we get a yes, and we get access to the original master long enough for us to do our mastering process.

From there, the process of making our running masters happens in our own facility and we know exactly what has been involved. The original masters go back to the label's vault, and we proceed to make copies from our running master. Again, in our own facility and under our control, so we know exactly what was involved there too.

All of the music you buy from us has been properly licensed, with royalties paid to the rights-holders.
« Last Edit: January 10, 2024, 02:19:21 AM by High and Outside »
Paul Stubblebine
Managing Director, The TapeProject