Use A Tape Deck Or Pedal To Add Tone?
Todd Simpson
Apr 22 2020, 07:19 PM
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Some folks are using a 2 track tape deck to add some compression and saturation to their tracks. They come out of the DAW and record on to 2 track tape and then re capture that 2 track tape to the daw to "warm up" the tracks and give them a bit of tape compression and tape saturation. This is a very common trick. However, 2 track tape decks are not cheap and they require upkeep, and tape. There is a way to get that same type of tone effect, using a simple stereo pedal by STRYMON. Whaddya think?

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klasaine
Apr 22 2020, 11:26 PM
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Deco is the bomb.
When I used to leave home, I wouldn't leave w/o it. It does a whole lot of things really well that the demos ever hardly mention: chorusing, flanging and in particular - light to medium (depending on pickups) gain that is as close to 'transparent' as I've ever experienced from a pedal.
Yeah, expensive. Totally worth it if you like, want and need those tones.

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Mertay
Apr 23 2020, 12:10 AM
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Actually a 2 track tape deck (specially in USA) could be found pretty cheap from what I read. For home use one likely won't need to keep buying fresh tape either.

The only downside is back in the day, the first thing engineers expected from newbie's were being able to fix and maintain them smile.gif can stop working for no apparent reason, motors may become unstable etc.

But I'd really like to own one someday. I had experience with working a cheap one, for jazz they're easy to use (no edit needed). Or can simply route tracks back and forth from the computer and get a thicker, sweeter sound much quicker. Can be decorative too biggrin.gif

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Todd Simpson
Apr 25 2020, 08:17 AM
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Sure you can get one on the cheap! But, like he says in the video, they tend to go to shop. He spent $500 just to get his working and it still squeaks when it rolls. Maintaining these things is a rare art these days and getting them worked on is not cheap. Buying a cheap one is like buying a cheap used car imho, it's gonna be in the shop and cost a bunch. Might as well save up and buy a nice one. One that has already be refitted maybe from a studio going out of business.

QUOTE (Mertay @ Apr 22 2020, 07:10 PM) *
Actually a 2 track tape deck (specially in USA) could be found pretty cheap from what I read. For home use one likely won't need to keep buying fresh tape either.

The only downside is back in the day, the first thing engineers expected from newbie's were being able to fix and maintain them smile.gif can stop working for no apparent reason, motors may become unstable etc.

But I'd really like to own one someday. I had experience with working a cheap one, for jazz they're easy to use (no edit needed). Or can simply route tracks back and forth from the computer and get a thicker, sweeter sound much quicker. Can be decorative too biggrin.gif



Killer pedal to be sure. Does wads of stuff and takes up only one spot on the pedal board. For folks using pedals this one is a great piece. Also works as a tape deck for adding compression/warmth/saturation like the guy in the video is doing.

QUOTE (klasaine @ Apr 22 2020, 06:26 PM) *
Deco is the bomb.
When I used to leave home, I wouldn't leave w/o it. It does a whole lot of things really well that the demos ever hardly mention: chorusing, flanging and in particular - light to medium (depending on pickups) gain that is as close to 'transparent' as I've ever experienced from a pedal.
Yeah, expensive. Totally worth it if you like, want and need those tones.

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klasaine
Apr 25 2020, 05:57 PM
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I have a lot of rec engineer friends who "bought tape machines" in the last several years. They all break down almost immediately and continue to break down because their parts are at the end of their life cycle. Only one of them uses it and only because he knows how to maintain it and has access to replacement parts. He still thinks it's a pain in the ass.

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Todd Simpson
Apr 25 2020, 06:18 PM
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That's the sad truth of it. It sounds like a cool idea until you get one and have to start sourcing parts that have not been made in years depending on the unit you get. In the "old days" engineers really had have engineer skills to solder the console and open up the take machines and such.

Good news is, a pedal like the deco can do a lot of the same things that you'd use a tape deck for. There are wads of 2 track tape deck plugins this days which is a bit ironic. Making a digital plugin to add some "warmth" smile.gif But some of em do work great like the UA plugin.

I'd like to have a tape deck at some point almost as a prop. They still just look cool. The guy in the vid uses his as a prop. He starts the video with it even though it's not being used.

QUOTE (klasaine @ Apr 25 2020, 12:57 PM) *
I have a lot of rec engineer friends who "bought tape machines" in the last several years. They all break down almost immediately and continue to break down because their parts are at the end of their life cycle. Only one of them uses it and only because he knows how to maintain it and has access to replacement parts. He still thinks it's a pain in the ass.

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klasaine
Apr 27 2020, 04:47 PM
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I have some experience with the UA 'Oxide' tape plugin and it sounds good. In the application that it was used it added a bit of compression, saturation (very light distortion) and took off a tiny bit of high end. You can probably get all that using a channel strip plugin too but this (oxide) sort of did it all with one click.
The Deco also does that.

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Todd Simpson
Apr 28 2020, 12:46 AM
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Yup. The tape plugins sound like a stack of various plugins with fewer knobs. One could get similar results by building a "tape strip" with a compressor/eq/etc. The tape plugins are much handier as they do it with fewer controls to set. A tape deck does it with even fewer controls but a lot more hassle.

QUOTE (klasaine @ Apr 27 2020, 11:47 AM) *
I have some experience with the UA 'Oxide' tape plugin and it sounds good. In the application that it was used it added a bit of compression, saturation (very light distortion) and took off a tiny bit of high end. You can probably get all that using a channel strip plugin too but this (oxide) sort of did it all with one click.
The Deco also does that.

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