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Using Tape Plugins & Making Comparisons

For everything after the recording stage: hardware/software and how you use it.

Re: Using Tape Plugins & Making Comparisons

Postby James Perrett » Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:54 pm

MOF wrote:Some engineers use undecoded dolby on vocal tracks, I’m surprised no one’s created a plugin to do that.

U-he's Satin will allow you to do that as well as do the trick where the highest band remains compressed to give an extra HF sheen. The Dolby emulation seems pretty good when decoding real Dolby A tapes.
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Re: Using Tape Plugins & Making Comparisons

Postby MOF » Thu Feb 07, 2019 10:45 pm

U-he's Satin will allow you to do that as well
Thanks James, I didn't know about this plugin.
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Re: Using Tape Plugins & Making Comparisons

Postby Martin Walker » Fri Feb 08, 2019 2:34 am

I've recently been impressed by the sound of Airwindows' ToTape - generic GUI, but all the controls do something really useful to my ears, and you can download it for free.


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Re: Using Tape Plugins & Making Comparisons

Postby Tim Gillett » Sat Feb 09, 2019 9:39 am

Elephone wrote:...Another thing I've noticed with real tape, is the way noise is more integrated with the wanted sound, and how the signal breaks through it almost like gating/compression effect...


Having worked with magnetic tape for over 50 years, I've never had the sense that there was anything but "programme plus tape noise" going on, at least at low levels.

I guess the way to test this would be :

1. record a high quality source to tape.

2. to a copy of the source, digitally mix in the same tape noise, at the same level

A-B the two, level matched of course.

Elephone wrote:... and how the signal breaks through it almost like gating/compression effect.

I don't understand this. Gating and compression are such different effects. Gating is much more like expansion which is the opposite of compression of course.
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Re: Using Tape Plugins & Making Comparisons

Postby Guest » Sat Feb 09, 2019 10:51 am

Tim Gillett wrote: Having worked with magnetic tape for over 50 years, I've never had the sense that there was anything but "programme plus tape noise" going on, at least at low levels.


I put electronic sounds through guitar and keyboard combo amps and valve outboard processors, but even if I had a top of a range Ampex or Studer I would still probably not use it.
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Re: Using Tape Plugins & Making Comparisons

Postby Tim Gillett » Sat Feb 09, 2019 11:21 am

Normally the tape saturation effect is the main attraction of analog tape for these days, and often with a saturated tape the hiss is inaudible anyway.
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Re: Using Tape Plugins & Making Comparisons

Postby Kwackman » Sat Feb 09, 2019 11:29 am

Still Vibrations wrote:even if I had a top of a range Ampex or Studer I would still probably not use it.

Good to read this!
I worked on analogue tape daily for many years, mostly Studer A80s, and if I never have to use a tape machine ever again, that would be perfect! Time taken up with line up, cleaning the heads (with the smell of Isopropyl alcohol lingering), de-magging, tape running out, very limited "undo" options, and tape hiss and noise, losing top end when you bounced down...

I've lost my rose tainted glasses!
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Re: Using Tape Plugins & Making Comparisons

Postby Elephone » Mon Feb 11, 2019 5:36 pm

Tim Gillett wrote:Normally the tape saturation effect is the main attraction of analog tape for these days, and often with a saturated tape the hiss is inaudible anyway.

I don't know, but there's a 'fizziness' I can't seem to emulate (when tape is pushed hard). The muddiness is not the same kind of 'static' fizz sound. The plugins seem to lack something in the highs and have a muddy rumble that doesn't sound right.

I suppose it depends on the style and sound you're into, but I don't think I'm talking about the subtle effects you get from high-end machines that minimized the artifacts I'm referring to.

Dub producers like Prince Fatty who use higher-end machines can't seem to get the authenticity of this (The Bakery) studio sound which sound like 1970s stuff to me. And, where I live, those Tascam (Studio 8-track) machines were often discarded from college music departments.

The Bakery:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QdilvJOSEn4

Prince Fatty:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6TnTYKFuLds
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