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Hi, John (and Jamie),

This is such a good philosophy. I am not surprised, but impressed 
nonetheless.

While there are both model-specific and serial-number-specific 
variations from the standard, at least picking a standard and sticking 
with it provides users/analysts down the road a better chance of 
implementing newer understandings of the process directly on the 
original digital file. For example, I transferred the Mullin-Palmer 
tapes with 17.5 µs EQ. We had many discussions (but no reliable data) as 
to whether Jack's Magnetophons were constant current or what. My 
contention was we could reliably ensure we were calibrated to the 17.5 
µs standard and not to anything else. So, if definitive information 
became available, or someone wanted to adjust by ear, it would be easy 
to figure out where the starting point was.

Furthermore, while looking at where the losses occur in tape recording, 
one might reasonably assume that 50% occur in the recording process and 
50% occur in the reproduction process. However, experience seems to tell 
us that most machines recorded better than they reproduced. That is one 
of the reasons we can use newer/better machines/system components and 
extract more from old tapes.

Being somewhat more budget-limited in 1967 or so, and could only afford 
one decent tape recorder (and both my ears and my back are glad I ended 
up waiting for an A77 over a Tapesonic) I spoke to a smart engineering 
student and asked him should I record or play with the better machine, 
and his response was "record with it, you want to put the best signal 
possible on the tape." I don't know if he didn't understand that I was 
referring to copying, but I thought he did. It didn't make sense to me 
then...if I didn't get the best signal off the tape, no matter what I 
did I couldn't improve the sound if it was buggered up in the playback.

I think it was after that I started discovering that playback was harder 
than recording.

Cheers,

Richard

On 2/10/2016 8:33 AM, John Chester wrote:
> We do not attempt to replicate any deviations from this standard which
> were characteristic of a particular machine.  Our goal is to deliver
> audio which is as close to the input signal to the recorder as possible.
-- 
Richard L. Hess                   email: [log in to unmask]
Aurora, Ontario, Canada                             647 479 2800
http://www.richardhess.com/tape/contact.htm
Quality tape transfers -- even from hard-to-play tapes.