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ARSCLIST  October 2012

ARSCLIST October 2012

Subject:

Re: Howard Scott Dies

From:

Dennis Rooney <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Mon, 8 Oct 2012 11:07:13 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (90 lines)

Some interesting components to this thread amplifying disc vs. tape.  Randy
Riddle observes that dub-editing was in wide use in the immediate post WW2
years, especially 1947-8 when the production of the first Lp masters was
underway. At that time, it could be assumed that the enthusiasm to replace
disc mastering with tape had not really begun. The fact that tape was a
longitudinal medium that required substantial investment in equipment that
was not widely available in 1947 and required a learning curve would have
militated against its adoption at that time. The concept certainly was no
problem for the motion picture industry but was for many in commercial
audio.

Ken Wilkinson's opinion as cited by Carl Pultz agrees with that of many
audio engineers who have acknowledged that the convenience and continuity
of tape, especially its easy editability (that is, after Joel Tall's
wonderful invention became available), nevertheless were accompanied by
trade-offs in audio quality, management of materials and rapidity of
access. Those who were born after magnetic recording became standard may
not appreciate the difficulty of making the transition from disc to tape;
however, in 1947, the supremacy of tape recording did not seem as
inevitable as it does in hindsight and a half decade of transition is thus
entirely understandable.

Dave Lewis and Richard Kaplan both asked about the transition at Columbia.
As I mentioned earlier, it was 1949 when the first tape masters were made
but it was not a global adoption. Philadelphia Orchestra sessions were
still mastered on lacquers until close to the beginning of 1950. Gradually,
lacquers became the back-ups for the tapes. This continued spottily until
as late as 1953 but effectively ended after December 1951, when artist
contracts were no longer normalized to sides and sessions could be run in
takes.

DDR


On Mon, Oct 8, 2012 at 9:03 AM, Carl Pultz <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Kenneth Wilkinson told an interviewer that the best recorded sound he had
> heard came from a disk. He didn't qualify it with a time frame.
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List
> [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Roger Kulp
> Sent: Sunday, October 07, 2012 8:47 PM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Howard Scott Dies
>
> I'll second that as far as Columbia lacquers and test pressings from the
> 40s
> and early 50s,are concerned.Although the ones I have are 12".
>
> Roger
>
>
>
>
>
> ________________________________
>  From: David Lewis <[log in to unmask]>
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Sent: Sunday, October 7, 2012 3:02 PM
> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Howard Scott Dies
>
> I *don't* disagree with Dennis. I think the notion that a late 1940s tape,
> just by being what it is -- or was --, is automatically better than disc is
> a little revisionist. CBS believed that their 16" disc recording
> system was state of the art, and they had only been using it for eight
> years in 1948. I would concur that it may have been, although the fact that
> the published discs were dubbed from these sources onto
> records issued with the very unfortunate laminated core was definitely a
> compromise, though some especially well preserved specimens can play back
> well. So much effort went into the LP program between
> 1944 and 1948 that I'm sure for CBS that making the additional turn towards
> tape was something that would have to wait. I am gratified to know now that
> 1949 was the year they adopted it; I had thought it
> 1950. And I can cite plenty of crummy sounding tapes from the late 40s that
> don't hold a patch on the fidelity of a Columbia 16" master disc from that
> time.
>
> Dave Lewis
> Lebanon, OH
>



-- 
Dennis D. Rooney
303 W. 66th Street, 9HE
New York, NY 10023
212.874.9626

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