I am a fan of classic analog tape. I’ve owned reel to reel tape decks for more years than I care to admit, and am always amazed at how good the old tape recordings I created waaaay back in the day sound. I’ve had friends ask me what effects/compression/EQ I used on the old stuff to get that “sound”. The answer is, of course, “nothing”. It’s just the native sound of the tape.
Anyway, I’d been spending time doing some album planning for 2015, and I couldn’t get my mind off my beloved tape. So I decided to do a “shootout”, comparing a single acoustic guitar performance recorded simultaneously to tape and to digital to help me decide if tape really is better than digital.
I’ve included links to the results below. Listen to the 2 recordings, think about which you like better, and then watch the video to find out which is which. Of course, your audition is not the same as mine. I can hook my tape deck up so there is no digital conversion going on, and hear a completely analog sound direct from my Teac tape deck. You have to make do with a digital copy of the tape recording. Check it out though and have fun!
Recording 1 (24-bit/48KHZ WAV file)
Recording 2 (24-bit/48KHZ WAV file)
Watch the video here: