This is a tale of how a relatively simply upgrade to Neville Roberts’ Studer A810 turned into a major problem, and how it led him to find a company that specialises in Studer MPU boards – solving all his issues! Over to Neville… While scanning interesting pages on eBay recently (as we do!), I happened to … More Those Studer battery blues: Neville Roberts saves his beloved deck with a chip, a board and little help from his friends
Smart Audio Recording Lab is a custom-designed recording studio that also operates as a tape label, releasing its own recordings as master tape copies. It’s run by father and son team Mikhail Mamonov and Artem Suntsov, who designed and built the studio from scratch in 2018. These guys are clearly passionate about what they do, … More A virtual visit to Smart Audio Recording Lab in Kirov, Russia
A bit of a side-ramble here, triggered by an article in The New Scientist magazine that caught my attention. The headline was ‘Large Hadron Collider sticks with reels of tape for vast storage needs’ and I thought, woah, hang on a minute, are they seriously suggesting that the immense volumes of data generated by one … More Magnetic tape: the format of choice for world-leading scientists!
Back in March we discovered US-based Kevin Root’s RX Reels, high quality tape reels made from upcycled aviation grade carbon fibre that look great and easily out-perform the usual plastic types. Ken Kessler recently checked them out for soundstagehifi.com. “When you remove them from the box, you sense the flatness, the precision, and—lo and behold!—in … More “Among the mechanically best I’ve ever seen”: Ken Kessler gives RX Reels a spin
Of the five tapes I recently bought from Analogue Productions (see A ramble around the tape catalogue of Analogue Productions), I figured the best place to start review-wise would be Hugh Masekela’s Hope, since I already had the phenomenal Analogue Productions 45rpm vinyl version as a basis for comparison. So, before we get going, let’s … More Hugh Masekela’s ‘Hope’ from Analogue Productions: how much better can it sound on tape than the already superb vinyl?
Many of you, whether you’re a tape head or a general audiophile, will already be familiar with Analogue Productions. Formed in 1992 by Chad Kassem, Analogue Productions is the record label division of Acoustic Sounds, the mail-order hifi and music retail business Kassem founded in 1986. It has since become one of the industry’s major … More A ramble around the tape catalogue of Analogue Productions
If you read Ken Kessler’s ‘Off the leash’ column in the May issue of Hi-Fi News, you’ll know that he recently added another 200 open-reel tapes to his collection, along with a dozen used LPs. Sorting through his haul to separate the gems from the dross, the near-pristine from the unplayable, he noticed something interesting … More “Through the past, darkly”: Ken Kessler ponders the condition of pre-owned tapes and what it can tell us about their history
When I was first asked to review a 10½ inch NAB spool that offered to combine high performance with good looks, I was a little sceptical. Yes, I can imagine that a well-designed spool can improve the look of a tape deck, but I couldn’t see how it could improve performance. However, I like to … More Neville Roberts reviews RX Reels’ carbon fibre tape reels
One of the most commonly reported effects of pandemic lockdown is a day-to-day struggle with maintaining focused attention. And so, when researching some piece of hi-fi news, I sometimes finding myself meandering around the internet hopping from one link to the next like Alice bouncing down the rabbit hole to Wonderland. Sometimes the net result … More Scientists unwind the mysteries of ‘sticky shed syndrome’ and why baking damaged tapes renders them playable again
Top hi-fi journalist and self-confessed R2R junkie Ken Kessler knows a thing or two about tape decks old and new, so if you’re in the market for a good secondhand machine, who better to guide to through the maze of what’s available. In a recent issue of Hi-Fi News magazine, Ken shared with readers his … More Revealed: Ken Kessler’s top 10 used open-reel decks