Not saying it's impossible, but it will be very hard for them to achieve a high-quality modern
transport without economies of scale. If they want to try for a brute-force vintage design, that can
be done in smaller batches if they can still source motors. I think of George Adams at United Audio
in NYC. Back in the 70s and 80s, he was able to build what probably amounted to a couple hundred
tape machines from scratch. He had a transport design I'd call brute-force with refinements. It was
dual-capstan (one being slightly smaller diameter than the other to maintain a tension over the
heads) and motion-sensing via a magnet glued to the bottom of the reel motors and "read" by a mono
cassette head (each time the circular magnet flipped polarity, the voltage changed out of the head,
so it was a primative "clocking" mechanism with fewer gradations than the light-sensor and spinning
striped wheel that Inovonics used for the Tentrol system). So it could be done, back then. I think
it would be harder to source parts in Australia in 2016.
-- Tom Fine
----- Original Message -----
From: "Aaron Coe" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Wednesday, January 20, 2016 1:22 PM
Subject: [ARSCLIST] Austrian Audiophile Company Designing New Reel-to-Reel Player
Horch House Press Release:
Austria-based Horch House is excited to announce the initiation of ‘PROJECT R2R’: the development of
the world’s only brand new reel-to-reel tape deck.
Launched in 2012, the Horch House brand has already developed an impressive reputation for capturing
the magic of original analogue master tapes and delivering faithful (and fully licensed and
approved) copies on reel-to-reel tape, vinyl records and in various digital formats. Now, the
company is also turning its attention to bringing the once essential reel-to-reel deck from its
current vintage status back to centre stage - where it belongs.
As is typical of Horch House, the company will be working closely with some of the industry’s
foremost experts in order to deliver the most accomplished outcome possible.
In developing their much-admired processes for creating astoundingly high quality copies of original
analogue master tapes, Horch House’s expert team of sound engineers undertook meticulous research
and development, calling in input from some of the world’s leading specialists (think of folks whose
client lists include Sir Paul McCartney, Sony and Abbey Road Studios and you get a sense of the
level of know-how involved).
This same high level of input will be applied to PROJECT R2R. The aim? “To achieve the best sound
quality, bar none,” says Horch House’s joint owner and project leader, Volker Lange, whose
excitement about the project is palpable. “My passion for audiophile tape machines goes way, way
back,” he explains. “This will be the realisation of a lifelong ambition. And it’s an absolute
honour and privilege to be working with a team of this calibre”.
In fact the team is already hard at work and hopes to be in a position to show a prototype of the
new deck at Munich’s High-End Show this coming May.