Hi Mike:

I know your friend well and while I'd like to see the output happen faster, I sure love every gift 
of wonderfully recorded music he sends my way. He loves to do it the way he does and it keeps him 
alert, engaged and happy at a very advanced age. So, while you and I might never hear the whole 
treasure trove, the more important thing is that it's OWNER and creator is enjoying it to the end of 
what must be a longer road than he might have imagined.

-- Tom Fine

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Mike Richter" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Tuesday, February 21, 2006 11:41 AM
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Cassette obsolescence - digitizing standards

> Tom Fine wrote:
>> I think copying ANYTHING "on autopilot" is a bad idea. We're paid to be the ultimate quality 
>> control regulator. The work is actually done by the machines. So our only really important job is 
>> NOT to hit play and go get a cup of coffee or pick up the phone. Throughout the history of 
>> recorded sound, nearly or every bit of great-sounding material was done very much hands-on.
>> One man's opinion.
>> -- Tom Fine
> Not everyone on this list fits that description. More to the point, at times the criteria for a 
> job may vary from those one would like to maintain.
> I have a friend with a priceless collection of recordings he made fifty to sixty years ago. One of 
> his jobs was as audio director for what was to become NBC-TV. (Another was playing fiddle in 
> Toscanini's band, but that's several other stories.) He is a perfectionist in transferring his 
> tapes and will let no one else handle them, but at his age and with the obligations he has 
> assumed - and those his wife has assumed for him - his output is a trickle. He has already lost a 
> substantial number of recordings to a 'flood of the century' and is in danger of losing more.
> I have tried to persuade him that a safety copy is the first requirement, but he is adamant. I 
> respect his position, but I agonize each time I read of a storm on the East Coast. I am also 
> fearful that he is relying on the accuracy of his hearing aids not only to equalize but also to 
> set level and to detect flaws. The first recordings he sent me (the Toscanini memorial concert 
> with its three conductors) went into clipping at several spots - and he was unaware of the error.
> Are those tapes worthy of archival transfer? By my judgement, they are and at far better than 
> 44/16. But they must be transferred while he is still alive since I've no confidence that his 
> widow will rescue them if he predeceases her. Between ideal digitizing and getting something onto 
> disc, I have no doubt which is more pressing.
> Mike
> -- 
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