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Cassette tapes fast-forward to new following in Southeast Asia

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Digital music compression is the fault of the studios and sound engineers opting for loudness over sound quality. CDs should sound better than tapes or records if they are produced by someone who knows what they are doing.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I understand the sentiment and practicality but unfortunately sound sucks on cassettes.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Don't forget your pencil for winding those tapes.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I understand the sentiment and practicality but unfortunately sound sucks on cassettes.

It can do, if the tape is poor quality or the deck hasn't been maintained adequately, but it can also be very good. Cassette is certainly not an inherently poor quality medium.

The cassette itself needs to be in reasonable condition, and the tape needs to run across clean heads. Most people didn't clean their decks frequently enough, and many hardly cleaned them at all. But unless you're a high-end purist who has to spend several hundred thousand yen on each individual component in your audio system, a fairly inexpensive separates-type cassette deck played through a decent audio system is capable of providing good sound.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

They used to use digital audio tapes for recording, and those were on tape, but digital.

That all said, I don't see any reason not to use pure digital these days, except for DJing, in which I much prefer turn tables.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Tapes were designed for voice recording, not music. Because they were more convenient and transportable than reel-to-reel or vinyl and cheaper than reel-t-reel, people started using them to record music from radio, which made them popular. They also provided the most practical way of listening to recorded music in a car.

Dolby and more expensive chrome tapes were efforts to produce higher quality music sound, but never attained CD quality. Cassette tapes always lacked treble. The minimum speed for recording music on reel-to-reel was 3 3/4 ips, but cassettes used the voice speed of 1 7/8 ips.

The main advantage of analogue over digital lay with the artist. Copies were often less than satisfactory, copies of copies often being awful, whereas digital copies are as good as the original.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I agree with Scrote on this one. The music companies thought that turning up the levels on a recording made it stand out. The sound engineers objected but gave in to monetary pressure and jacked up the levels to the point of severe distortion. I gave up listening a long time ago due to the heavy handed meddling the industry introduced in order to get their bottom line. They don't even refer to the music by artist anymore but as "units" or "product".

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AFRet: The music companies thought that turning up the levels on a recording made it stand out.

Wonder if that goes for streaming, too. With my old Android tablet I didn't have any problem, but with my newer one, on the minimum volume setting lots of times it's too loud. So I pull my earbuds out halfway to compensate. Haven't found earbuds with volume adjust (except wireless ones), or a volume adjustment adapter, so was thinking of looking for an app to reduce the minimum volume.

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That all said, I don't see any reason not to use pure digital these days, except for DJing, in which I much prefer turn tables.

So you just found two reasons: 1), it's well suited for DJing, and 2) you much prefer it.

Djing is an area that I have no interest in, so I don't spend much time thinking about the technical aspects of it. But I assume that it is technically possible to do it digitally. But, as in many other fields, such as photography, there are people who either have different preferences - which they don't need to justify because a preference is a preference - or find that a certain tool actually does the job better.

I like the idea that separate technologies, including the old and the new, can exist alongside each other, or that even where one is almost universally adopted, another can still have a life of its own. Rather than simply saying that the new needs to replace the old.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I brought my English-made turntable with me to Japan, then bought Nakamichi decks; one for my home to record albums, and another for my convertible...cassettes go into the deck long-wise, and it is tweakable...the sound was unmatched ( please note that I was listening to less-than-perfect vinyl records in my car at 100 km per hour mostly...yea, in a convertible or ragtop...so any bit of hiss or scratching was never noticeable, duh!). that great sound is all in the magnets- from source needle (Moving Magnet cartridges mostly) to cassette deck head. simply brilliant!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The article mentions "vinyl," which makes me think "recored," but then discusses a CD release. Do the actually still make records? And is equipment to play them still available?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Laguna - Do the actually still make records? And is equipment to play them still available?

One of the pulldown categories on Amazon's search box is "CDs & Vinyl". And you can still buy turntables, including turntables with USB interfaces so you can transcribe your collection digitally.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Do the actually still make records? And is equipment to play them still available?

They do make records, and record players are still being sold. But they are pretty much exclusively for DJs that prefer vinyl, not for the average consumer.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Those old people liking oldies aren't dead yet.

Extensive article on status as of 2014, publishers, vinyl plants, and consumers:

http://pitchfork.com/features/article/9467-wax-and-wane-the-tough-realities-behind-vinyls-comeback/

Wax and Wane: The Tough Realities Behind Vinyl's Comeback - July 28 2014

Midway thru the article there's a top 10 list for 2014-YTD vinyl sales. No. 6 is a Bob Marley album and No. 7 is the Beatle's Abbey Road.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

True about cassettes - even my Nakamich can't make them sound good - but untrue re:vinyl- vinyl never really died in Japan. Witness the number of boutique shops selling vintage vinyl in even mid-size cities. Vinyl is enjoying a resurgence w/even newer bands putting out virgin 180 gm copies of material recorded digitally. Recently bought Joe Endo's (Yokohama-based bassist) "It's Now or Never" on LP at a jazz festival. Stellar. Rega, Music Hall, Orbit, Pro-ject are producing tables at entry-level prices, and '80s-'90s vinyl is cheap locally. Dig it: http://thevinylfactory.com/vinyl-factory-releases/the-8-best-budget-turntables-that-wont-ruin-your-records/

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Plenty of turntables to play vinyl records at Bic Camera Shinjuku. A lot of replacement styluses too.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

There was nothing quite like the one square foot of artwork that you got on the cover of a vinyl LP.

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They do make records, and record players are still being sold. But they are pretty much exclusively for DJs that prefer vinyl, not for the average consumer.

The average consumer isn't much interested in buying LPs, so it's true that turntables aren't targeted at them. But there is still a very wide range of (new) turntables/record players available (dozens of manufacturers and hundreds of models), and they are certainly not exclusively for DJs: they are simply for music lovers, of which DJs are a subset. The entire turntable lineup from many companies is actively unsuitable for DJ use, their models being too fragile and at the higher end of the lineup, too expensive as well. There is a DJ-oriented market, and a market more oriented for the home listener. A lot of DJ turntables work well in either setting, as many home listeners are happy to own a deck such as the Technics SL1200, while others go out of their way to avoid it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Fair enough, I could see how I would be working on my confirmation bias, knowing that all the people I know who own turntables are DJs, and not average music listeners. But I can believe there would be a subset of music listeners who prefer vinyl.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Interesting, i wonder if real money will have a renaissance and be attached to something valuable/tangible again something like gold perhaps, doubt it.

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