With some 48 different tapeless systems having been announced over the last five years the market place is beginning to feel a bit crowded and no doubt confusing for those who want to invest in the technology. In addition, tapeless audio storage now uses hard disk (Winchester), optical disk (both WORM and erasable) an RAM so any thought of standardization or compatibility between systems seems unlikely. Add to this the fact that tapeless recording/editing presents new opportunities which require new working practices and it's not surprising that the claims that tape machines are going to disappear (overnight) have stopped. However, with the range of systems now available in terms of price and application, perhaps it's time for tapeless systems to be investigated as a matter of course when audio facilities are considering investing in new equipment. This will require both an understanding for what the technology is capable of and what the system manufacturers can offer.
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