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Thread: Tascam 388 countdown... not up?

  1. #1
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    Tascam 388 countdown... not up?

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    Hi all,
    Lots of knowledgeable folks on here! Been reading all posts I can find on 388's the past few days. After many years recording with a digital home studio, I was recently enticed by a friend's studio where he records to a Tascam 388. With it, he's getting beautiful recordings that have a lot of character. I was completely stoked to find one for sale on craigslist. So a two-day road trip and a couple hundred bucks later, I'm staring at this honkin' thing in my studio. It may be too early to use words like love, but I've definitely developed a crush. It's in immaculate shape- very clean and no scratches or dents. I'm VERY new to this kind of gear, but I'm absolutely excited to learn all I can about it. So, what appears to be the first and only problem I've found (so far), is that the counter, when I press PLAY, counts backwards. That is, I'll press the reset button, press play, and it will immediately count from zero into the negative. When I press RTZ, it goes forward forever, counting further into the negative. Also, when the unit is fast-forwarding, the STOP button is ineffective. I found that the only way I can stop it while it is fast-forwarding is to press REWIND and then stop (is that hard on this kind of machine? A bad idea?). I'm using the tape that was loaded there by the previous owner. It plays back the recording on the tape and seems like it must be loaded correctly. STOP works while in play and rewind, just not fast-forward. I realize this could very well be embarrassing user error... maybe I don't understand the LOAD function fully. Any ideas? Any advice would be MUCH appreciated. Can't wait to start recording with this and learning all its ins and outs.
    Thanks!
    Last edited by Poulsbo Slim; 11-10-2010 at 02:26. Reason: biggerbetterfaster

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    Sounds like you have the tape routed around the wrong side of the tach wheel. Thats the far right big roller right before the right hand tension arm.That would make it count backwards.
    Move the tape to the other side of the roller.

    I have swiped someone elses picture here, but it shows how the tape should be threaded

    I dont know about the not stopping in fast forward problem however.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails heads-jpg  

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    hey - so you found the source! this is great place for info on all this stuff....
    but you have to invite me over soon to see her! I'm sure we can work out any of the quirks..... its likely the tape path like technoplayer suggested.
    til soon, neighbor
    "Do not fear to be eccentric in opinion, for every opinion now accepted was once eccentric. " - Bertrand Russell

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    Thanks so much for the help guys. Indeed, it was the tape path. I just figured the previous owner would have loaded it correct, but no. LUNE! Crazy! Glad to find this site and you on it. We'll have to nerd out on our 388's soon (Miki will probably stay home).

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    Did that also fix the FFWD problem? The transports tend to get a bit confused if the tach signals are incorrect so I wouldn't put it past it.

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    Yup. Fixed all problems- acting as it should now. This thing is so cool!

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    Just read this thread...that was my first thought too...that the tape was under the tach roller and not above.

    Glad to get to that last post and see that all is well.

    Wasn't going to say anything but then I saw your location.

    Greetings to another Oregonian 388 owner!

    I think that makes three of us on this forum that I know of!

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