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-----Original Message-----
From David Lennick: "... I pulled one out last night because I needed one
track that I'd transferred in 
1996..on a used tape that was 5 years old THEN. It played perfectly. The
tape 
was a Maxell R120DM..."

The quality of new DAT tape stock, other than that manufactured by Fuji,
went completely to hell during the late '90s. Another problem with metal
particle tape is that, according to a former 3M engineer who used to post to
the Pro Audio list, the stuff self-erases over time.

The good news about digital is the possibility of cloning. The bad news is
that virtually all of the media is significantly less stable and reliable
than analog technology. We can still play a lot of Edison's early
recordings. We can't play a lot of digital recordings. Nobody talks about
this issue because you can't earn any patent income from most analog
technology.
	

Bob Olhsson Audio Mastery, Nashville TN
Mastering, Audio for Picture, Mix Evaluation and Quality Control
Over 40 years making people sound better than they ever imagined!
615.385.8051 http://www.hyperback.com