The other alternative for archiving is Emtec SM911, *if* you can find it.
(We laid in a heavy inventory of this stock just prior to Emtec shutting
down). This stock has superior wind characteristics, and is relatively
low-print. Word is that another German firm will be starting up production
again of at least part of the Emtec open reel stock line, so there is hope.
Likewise, it appears that Quantegy may re-surface again in a somewhat
different form. I have had some communication with the principals in this
venture, and it looks promising.

In the meantime, you may be able to find some smaller quantities of both
Emtec and Quantegy stock at some suppliers. You may have to live with
different batch runs, though.

If you don't mind going one generation in digital, you could digitize all
your current material, and then output it to tape as it becomes available.
Some clients we have worked with prefer to have all their analog copies made
analog-to-analog, though. However, at 24 bit 96 kHz, it shouldn't be an
issue for voice recordings.

Given the problems we have seen with digital formats over the past 18 years,
I would defininately recommend making an analog safety of anything that is
going to be held long term. As good as the evolving digital standards
becoming, there are just too many questions left in regards to the long-term
stability of any digital medium. We have seen severe problems with some
digital recordings that are less than 5 years old. On the other hand, we
have reproduced analog recordings dating back to the 1930's (although not
without some problems).

Scott D. Smith

Chicago Audio Works, Inc.

----- Original Message -----
From: "David Heetderks" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Wednesday, March 09, 2005 7:14 PM
Subject: [ARSCLIST] Creating Archival Copies on Analog Reel

> I am writing from Oral History American Music at Yale University.  We
> are a project that conducts and collects recorded interviews with
> American composers and musicians.  We recently received a grant to copy
> our archive onto a more stable format.
> I am relatively new to audio archiving, but after discussion with some
> recording experts at Yale, we came up with a plan to copy each
> interview onto 2 CD-Rs (one Reference Master, one user copy), and copy
> interviews on an unstable format (e.g., cassette, DAT, 1/2 track reel)
> onto analog reel.  We were advised that Quantegy 478 Low Print-through
> is ideal for archiving a recorded voice.
> With Quantegy out of business, it has become difficult to find blank
> reels.  We found one supplier in Connecticut, but it is relatively
> pricey.  I am wondering if others on this listserv uses analog reel for
> archiving, and how they are dealing with the current shortage.  Do you
> have several reels in stock, or do expect another manufacturer to buy
> manufacturing rights to audio reels in the near future?  If shortage of
> reels will be a long-term problem, would you suggest that we adjust our
> plans.
> Again, I am new to audio archiving, so please accept my apologies if
> this has been discussed before.  Thank you for any information you may
> have.
> David Heetderks
> [log in to unmask]