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Thread: Punch In / Out times for MS-16

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    Punch In / Out times for MS-16

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    Was doing some engineering the other day (usually I just record myself) - when we were trying to punch some acoustic parts. I was surprised to find I can't get a clean punch if there isn't a break in program material.

    I hadn't even considered this - but I guess the gap from the erase head to the record head is what causes the blank spot after a punch out...

    Am I crazy? Is there a way to get around this to get clean tight punches in Sync on an MS-16?

    If I recall correctly my MCI JH-110 did this beautifully... this may have been the QUIOR circuitry though.

    Is this a common issue?

    Mike

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    Hi Mike,
    I don't have the manual on hand but there's a description of the punch in/punch out function with times in there.
    It's definitely worse than other tape machines I've used.
    IIRC it's the laggard punch out time that kills you. Try punching in and then going until there's a break (or the end of the song).
    My humble, militantly analogue studio's blog: The Bottle Garden

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    Yup - punching in is clean, no pops nothing - right on time... its the .5 second gap when punching out.

    That was how I was rolling after finding now matter how I punched out (going to play, dropping record switch etc...) you always had a gap at the end. Had to go in at the fix and then ride it out till the end of the song (unless we could get out somewhere there was a gap).

    The MCI was a PITA - but its punch capabilities were awesome. The sound was awesome too... but the Tascam transport is light years ahead with the locator.

    How's punching on the MX70?

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    I don't really know the MS16, but is there a way to play back from the record head when punching in? I just remember on my old 3340 machine when multi tracking or punching in you monitored from the record head and not the playback head? When I upped to the MSR 16 this machine only had a combined rec / playback head so the issue did not come up.

    Alan.

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    There are also mods you can do (change values of capacitors, or eliminate caps) to reduce the time delay. They delay is built into the circuit to avoid thumps.

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    I would be really interested in those mods!!

    I don't always have to punch in - but it would be nice to get the gap down. When I discovered that was the case I was mildly bummed out... just when I was really starting to enjoy working with the machine.

    If you can point me in the direction I would be really grateful!

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    Mr. Bot, forum member evm1024 documented this nicely in his MS16 thread. The info starts on post #130 here:

    MS-16 story

    Electrolytic caps C30 and C32 on the rec/play amp card handle the switching delay, and, again, the purpose of the delay is to abate switching noise. The stock value is 4.7uF for these caps. evm1024 removed them entirely and replaced them with staple jumpers on his amp cards since punches weren't important to him, but crisp and quick switching was. I personally am going to try 2.2uF...hopefully still manage switching noise but offer quicker switching operation. Other standard values that could be tried are 1uF and 3.3uF.

    HTH

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    Just wanted to say that I found this thread very interesting. I was thinking only a few days ago how one of the (many) great things about recording on tape is the ability to punch in and out. I've never found a satisfactory way of doing this when using a DAW. My digital pocketstudio has a footswitch jack but it is not the same as when using tape - I find knowing that you have to have to improve on the punch-in with tape as there is no going back much more inspiring! I've always found my Tascam 244 pretty good for punching in and out - never any noise or unworkable lag, despite the slow tape speed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by man-bot View Post
    Yup - punching in is clean, no pops nothing - right on time... its the .5 second gap when punching out.

    That was how I was rolling after finding now matter how I punched out (going to play, dropping record switch etc...) you always had a gap at the end. Had to go in at the fix and then ride it out till the end of the song (unless we could get out somewhere there was a gap).

    The MCI was a PITA - but its punch capabilities were awesome. The sound was awesome too... but the Tascam transport is light years ahead with the locator.

    How's punching on the MX70?
    Hey sorry, missed this. Punching is really great on the MX70. There's a rather elaborate gapless punch calibration that I've thankfully never had to adjust. If you download the manual at AnalogRules.con (Goreski uploaded a really nice clear scan) it gives you a bit of an idea of the trade-offs and considerations for punch-ins/punch-outs.

    Having spent a lot of time with both machines, here's my opinion:

    MS-16 Advantages:
    -Much cheaper parts and fewer common failure points (this is a very important consideration...MX-70s can be serious money pits!)
    -Identical sync and repro response
    -Slightly less fragile printed circuit boards
    -dbx included
    -LED readout on vari-speed (love this feature: so many uses)

    MX-70 Advantages
    -More robust transport
    -gentler tape path
    -more headroom in electronics
    -Global bias control for quicker record alignments
    -and once again, better punches
    -switchable speeds

    The capacitor mod is an intriguing idea. I'm curious how it'll work out. If you have the extender card and socket the cap, it'd be a snap to find out the best compromise.
    My humble, militantly analogue studio's blog: The Bottle Garden

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    Hey what voltage are the audio power rails on the MX70?

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