Help with 1/2" tape

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by zzmoore, Aug 17, 2008.

  1. zzmoore

    zzmoore Member

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    I am picking up a 1/2", 8 track, Otari 50/50 that was made in 1986 I believe. It seems to be in quite good shape.

    Can anybody recommend a good forum for R2R? Anybody want to make a suggestion as to what type of board I might want to get for this? This will be a big learning process for me. Does $500.00 get any kind of decent mixer on the used market? I will most likely record to tape, and then let my friends with Cubase, ProTools, etc, take it from there.
    Thank You
     
  2. zenfreud

    zenfreud Member

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    Congrats on the Otari, that's a great recorder.

    On choosing a mixer, how many mic channels do you need at once? Will you be recording with multiple mics on several live instruments, or just one mic at a time? These days, many people record with dedicated mic preamps and only use their board for monitoring, especially when they're going to be transferring to digital later. That way, the budget goes toward quality over quantity. Many recordings done in the computer won't use a mixer at all.

    For years, the best bang for the buck boards were made by Mackie. Lots of records were cut on them, despite their detractors, they worked. You might also try looking at Soundcraft Spirit, Soundtracs Solo and Allen & Heath Mixwizard boards too. Test every channel, or the bargain $500 used mixer could easily end up costing $1000 once you factor in repair costs.
     
  3. subendo

    subendo Member

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  4. zzmoore

    zzmoore Member

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    zenfreud -
    Thanks. I do have an ART MPA Pro in a rack, which has two preamps. Not sure if they are what you would call high quality, I don't really know to be honest with you. We will probably be using 1-4 tracks at a time rather than all 8. So I guess for now I will learn with the ART pre that we have and look for a decent mixer.
    I will also have to learn to align heads, clean heads and capstans, degauss (is that the right word?) and stuff like that.
    If any other advice occurs to you, I would be happy to hear it.
    Thanks Again
     
  5. jcground

    jcground Member

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    +1 for Mackie if you're looking for a smaller analog mixer on the cheap. On a bit larger scale, I've had good experiences with Carvin and TAC Scorpion boards, but I believe the ones I've used would blow your budget on the used market.
     
  6. zzmoore

    zzmoore Member

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    OK, the journey begins. Now I just need a mixer, some kind of monitors, a new snake, and a friend to let me dump into their ProTools. :rolleyes:

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  7. franksguitar

    franksguitar Member

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    Congrats on the Otari. I also use analog 16 & 8 track machines a Tascam MSR-16 and a Fostex A8 as well as digital interfaces. There are a few analog forums on the web. Home recording is one with an analog forum. My studio is posted on show us your studio on here.
     
  8. franksguitar

    franksguitar Member

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    Congrats on the Otari, I use a Tascam MSR16 and a Fostex A8 with Mackie, Alesis and Tascam Boards. A good forum is homerecording.com BBS site with an analog section.
     

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