AES San Francisco 2012
Historical Event H5

Monday, October 29, 9:00 am — 10:30 am (Room 133)


H5 - The Replay of Historical Magnetic Tape—More than Pressing the Play Button

Nadja Wallaszkovits, Phonogrammarchiv, Austrian Academy of Science - Vienna, Austria

This fascinating presentation discusses the various process challenges involved with the transfer of historical magnetic audio tapes. Focusing on the digitization of collections from the very early years of magnetic recording, for example the earliest tapes from Portugal and Norway, Nadja Wallaszkovits shows the various stages of preservation, handling, and reproduction of important original tapes from the early days of magnetic recording. Beginning with an overview of early magnetic tape developments, the original tape recorders and their specific parameters are introduced. Next, the practical handling of critical tapes is outlined. Based on an analysis of the physical and chemical preservation status of individual tapes, the choice and adjustment of the replay equipment and parameters are covered. The problems of tape carrier handling and physical as well as chemical restoration are outlined, along with discussions on optimizing head azimuth, tape-to-head contact, tape speed, and tension. All are important for optimum signal recovery.

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EXHIBITION HOURS October 27th 10am – 6pm October 28th 10am – 6pm October 29th 10am – 4pm
REGISTRATION DESK October 25th 3pm – 7pm October 26th 8am – 6pm October 27th 8am – 6pm October 28th 8am – 6pm October 29th 8am – 4pm
TECHNICAL PROGRAM October 26th 9am – 7pm October 27th 9am – 7pm October 28th 9am – 7pm October 29th 9am – 5pm
AES - Audio Engineering Society