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Author Topic: High bias cassettes  (Read 1084 times)

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Offline lsd2525

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Re: High bias cassettes
« Reply #15 on: March 16, 2022, 10:49:06 AM »
^^^^^^^ cool
Back OT, sort of   >:D
On tapeheads I read that a lot of them prefer the Type I, normal bias tapes for their recording of mixtapes etc. Chrome, or High bias was supposed to best the frequency response and saturation levels of recordings, which it did, but also did not ,depending on whose opinion or lab results you favor.

secondly,  I never knew back in the day, but now it is established knowledge that the two countries where most tape was manufactured, Germany and Japan had different standards and thus varying performance depending on which tape one used.  (ANSI vs DIN) So, Japanese manufacturers such as TDK, Maxell, and Sony were set as defaults for the Japanese built machines (Nakamichi, Sony etc) while BASF and AGFA were the standard used for EU/German decks such as Studer, Tandberg, Uher, B&O etc.

Finally, of course, there were only about a dozen factories worldwide which made tape, they then branded and shelled tapes to specific brand instructions/design/standards.

That's interesting. I used to use BASF's back in the day to record albums on for the car. Always XLII's and the occasional TDK for Dead shows.
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Offline ts

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Re: High bias cassettes
« Reply #16 on: March 16, 2022, 11:09:54 AM »
^^^^^^^ cool
Back OT, sort of   >:D
On tapeheads I read that a lot of them prefer the Type I, normal bias tapes for their recording of mixtapes etc. Chrome, or High bias was supposed to best the frequency response and saturation levels of recordings, which it did, but also did not ,depending on whose opinion or lab results you favor.

secondly,  I never knew back in the day, but now it is established knowledge that the two countries where most tape was manufactured, Germany and Japan had different standards and thus varying performance depending on which tape one used.  (ANSI vs DIN) So, Japanese manufacturers such as TDK, Maxell, and Sony were set as defaults for the Japanese built machines (Nakamichi, Sony etc) while BASF and AGFA were the standard used for EU/German decks such as Studer, Tandberg, Uher, B&O etc.

Finally, of course, there were only about a dozen factories worldwide which made tape, they then branded and shelled tapes to specific brand instructions/design/standards.

That's interesting. I used to use BASF's back in the day to record albums on for the car. Always XLII's and the occasional TDK for Dead shows.

I never tried BASF. Always XLII, TDK SA's or the occasional Sony. One time I used those crazy heavy metal tapes for New Years run. For the final 95 run I stumbled on a brand called Thats and did all but one show with them. Don't even remember where I bought them or why. Funny thing is today, those tapes fail way more often than any other, much older tapes I have. Yes, I occasionally listen to my old master cassettes. :headphones: The "Thats" tapes from 95 would fold while playing back at an alarming rate. Pop in a 10 - 15 year older Maxell and no problems. Same deck of course. :shrug:

Offline DSatz

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Re: High bias cassettes
« Reply #17 on: March 17, 2022, 04:12:29 PM »
That information about tape manufacture quoted above doesn't sound right to me. Rather, in the mid-1970s there was a difference between Nakamichi and EVERYONE ELSE IN THE WORLD regarding the correct playback equalization for type II tapes and beyond. Nakamichi decks played such tapes back about 2 dB brighter (and a little noisier) than all other deck manufacturers. This was of course used in hifi showrooms to show the "audible superiority" of Nakamichi decks--bring in your favorite cassettes and compare; you hear more musical detail on a Nakamichi! --until eventually they realized that this was undermining them (tapes recorded on their decks sounded dull on all other decks, after all; you can't have one without the other), and they brought their decks' response to very nearly the standard that EVERYONE ELSE IN THE WORLD had been following all along, including other Japanese brands such as Sony and TEAC.

I made hundreds of serious classical and documentary recordings on cassettes all during the 1970s. I still have many of those tapes, and during the past several years have transferred or re-transferred most of them. In the 1970s I favored type II tapes (e.g. TDK "Super Avilyn", or sometimes BASF CrO2 C-120s which were the only type II C-120s I could find) because of their superior high frequency headroom and lower noise. But I wish now that I had used type I tapes instead, because the print-through on the type IIs is very distracting in some cases. There's good hardware and software for moderating tape hiss nowadays, more than enough to make up the dynamic range difference. But nothing can cure print, and it only gets worse with time in storage.

I had good experience with type IV (metal) tape on decks that were properly designed to record on it (it required substantially higher bias current than the other types), but I didn't use enough of it to form an opinion about whether it has print-through problems or not.

--best regards
« Last Edit: March 17, 2022, 04:14:21 PM by DSatz »
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Offline rocksuitcase

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Re: High bias cassettes
« Reply #18 on: March 17, 2022, 06:26:50 PM »
DSatz. And also each large manufacturer had differing designs for each region.
Here is a guy who has curated these articles from the past which tapeheads dudes cite a lot:
https://audiochrome.blogspot.com/2020/02/audio-magazine-cassette-tape-reviews.html
and test he has done on varying tape types:
https://audiochrome.blogspot.com/2020/12/index-to-cassette-tape-measurements.html

I will admit I do not get into the medium for the same reasons these fellas do. I just want accurate machines which can take off all these damn cassette master recordings. So I read their forum and find some interesting stuff among the chest pumping about which is best. There are some amazing DIY guys who share their work on there.
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