Just to be clear, you are not experiencing drop-outs. You are experiencing mutes.
May I suggest you try the Sony 7000 series, the 2500 series as well. Both mechanisms complement eachother in terms of retrieval.
From: Tom Fine [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
Sent: Thursday, May 13, 2010 04:42 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] DAT glitches
This is very true! Transfer the DATs ASAP. It's a dead format and you never know what tape has what errors where and if there is any way to recover audio from the error-prone areas.I've been having mixed luck transferring a bunch of DATs for a private collection, all recorded in the 1990's. Age doesn't seem to matter (tapes are from 1990-99), brand doesn't seem to matter (Agfa, BASF, Ampex, Maxell, TDK and 3M are all represented), whether a tape plays without errors or not is pretty random. When they work, they work fine. When there are error spots, usually they are unfixable dropout errors. I am using a Sony 500 and a Panasonic 3700. Sometimes swapping machines helps but usually an error-prone area is an error-prone area and there's not much that can be done. Luckily, some of this content was recorded to CD, so there's a backup source. Notice I say recorded to CD. For some reason, the person "making this collection future-proof" before me did analog transfers from a consumer portable DAT machine to an early home-hifi CD recorder. The sound quality of the CD's is noticeably different (and inferior) but it's feasible to patch in short bursts to cover up dropouts. Of course, this adds to the labor bill considerably. I actually hate this kind of labor, so it's money hard earned as well as hard paid!Just to be clear -- the vast majority of minutes of recorded content is transferring just fine. The problem with DATs is, when there are serious errors, there are dropouts and it's hard if not impossible to recover that content. This is somewhat akin to a bad problem on an analog tape where oxide gets lost and thus there's no content to recover because the actual magnetic information is gone in a puff of dust.So transfer your DATs to a managed digital storage archive, and make a good digital-to-digital transfer since you may never be able to play any of the tapes again at some future date.-- Tom Fine----- Original Message ----- From: "Richard L. Hess" To: Sent: Thursday, May 13, 2010 10:48 AMSubject: Re: [ARSCLIST] DAT glitches> At 09:51 AM 2010-05-13, Karl Fitzke wrote some really neat and useful stuff that I won't repeat:>> Hi, Karl.>> That was wonderful. Thanks!>> I learned to do manual DAT-head cleaning about ten years ago. I had put a machine on the shelf and > bought another when I thought the first machine was dead, but it turned out that I had a bad batch > of DAT tapes that shed like crazy--perhaps even sticky-shed. They were TDK. At the time, it was > apparently known.>> I switched to first KAO and then Maxell DDS tapes (rather than audio DATs) for my own recording > and never had a problem.>> While some say that DAT works well and is robust, I still think we should transfer our DATs before > our open reels, everything else being equal. I'd much rather fix an open reel machine than a DAT.>> Cheers,>> Richard>> Richard L. Hess email: [log in to unmask]> Aurora, Ontario, Canada (905) 713 6733 1-877-TAPE-FIX> Detailed contact information: http://www.richardhess.com/tape/contact.htm> Quality tape transfers -- even from hard-to-play tapes.