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Thread: Tape endurance

  1. #1
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    Tape endurance

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    Whats up guys,
    I will find this out on my own soon enough, but I'm wondering how many uses I will be able to get out of a new reel of rmg sm911(or any tape) before quality/performance starts to degrade (the tape's performance, not mine!).

    In what ways will the quality start to suffer?


  2. #2
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    Dec 2000
    BC, Canada
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    Generally speaking, a good tape will last thousands of passes, provided it's well kept and not run on a problem machine. It also means that, if you wish to reuse, one tape will last you a long, long time, potentially producing dozens, if not hundreds, of full length albums. See, tape doesn't have to be expensive.


  3. #3
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    Jan 2005
    Austin, TX
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    Theoretically speaking, each time tape rubs agains another surface, a miniscule amount of tape oxide sheds off of the tape itself. Also, a miniscule amount of the magnetic field that's actually stored on the tape wears off onto whatever object the tape has touched (this is especially true when tape touches metal surfaces......whcih most tape machines have for the guides, and heads.)

    So, in theory, a tape is NEVER as good as the last time it was used.

    But theory doesn't always equal practice. Like Cjacek said earlier, a well-kept tape used on a well-kept recorder will produce MANY albums before it must hit the shelf as a permanent archive, or be tossed in the trash can.

    The question is just how sensitive are your ears to notice these minute degradations in the sound quality? Can your ear actually pick up 4 nanograms of tape oxide that shedded off of a tape over 1 pass of the entire tape? ..........probably not.


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