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Thread: Tascam Portastudio 424 Mk I - Channels "dropping out" in playback - please advise

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    Tascam Portastudio 424 Mk I - Channels "dropping out" in playback - please advise

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    -I also posted this in the Tascam forum but read I may get more engagement here-

    Hello,

    I own a second hand Portastudio 414 Mk I, which served me well while recording a project recently. However, it's time to do a mixdown, and I've noticed a concerning problem.

    At random moments certain channels suddenly lower in volume. Usually it's just channel 2. It drops to "very quiet" for a while, then slowly comes back up to normal volume. I know this is a playback problem and not on the actual recording, as it happens at unpredictable moments.

    My band's songs are 7-10 minutes in length, so I dread the prospect of running the signal out to the master tape, then all of a sudden at 8 minutes in a channel drops out.

    Is this a common issue? Is this something I could fix myself? I have very limited mechanical/electronic experience but my gut feeling is that a connection somewhere is compromised. There is an a/v service place in town but I know the tech has a huge backlog and I'd like to also avoid the $75 it might cost me (which is what I paid for the machine in the first place).

    I appreciate your input!

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    My 424 has never had this issue so I cant say for sure though I would suggest deoxit cleaning of sockets, faders, pots , etc and cleaning and demag the heads and transport. Anyone else have any info?
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    First off, a THOROUGH cleaning of the heads is advised. With that narrow width, its amazing how little dirt can ruin your day.

    I've had heads that looked clean yet the playback volume was funky. Cleaning and cleaning again brought it back to normal.

    I can't say if this is your culprit, but it's a basic remedy to apply.

    If it doesn't solve your issue at least you have removed one non optimal issue.

    Can't hurt to try.

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    Thanks guys, I previously demagnetized the heads and cleaned the heads and rollers, shocked at how much crap came off, but I will clean them again after reading this. I haven't done a deoxit cleaning, that's one of the things I was hoping to find out about how to tackle this. Is there a forum thread about cleaning the pots etc? I just want to make sure I'm doing things right.

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    Plenty of info in the analog section. Lots of tascam 4track threads. Get some coffee, tea, whiskey or whatever and start reading.

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    I'll take all of the above! Cheers!

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