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Analog tape bird recordings

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Old Saturday 17th June 2017, 06:20   #1
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Location: Melbourne Australia
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Analog tape bird recordings

Hi all.
Just joined this very interesting forum.
I have recently taken up a new hobby of recording bird & wildlife sounds.
However, since I am a big fan of analog reel to reel tape media, I am using, for now at least, a UHER Report Monitor 4000 portable tape deck.
The record & playback audio quality is terrific.
I have been using an AKG C1000S condensor mic with it, not too bad, but could do better as this mic has a fairly high internal noise level so is not ideal for very quiet sounds.
Very soon I will have a Rode NTG4+ shotgun mic to use also, this will be a bit better for my outdoor field recordings I think.
I have recordings of crows, currawongs, rainbow lorikeets, and some others, but not too many as yet. I really look forward to doing a lot more !

Has anyone else here used analog tape for recording bird calls ?

Cheers, Chris
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Old Saturday 17th June 2017, 07:33   #2
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Hi Chris

Analogue cassette tape recorders were the only game in town for most birders until relatively recently. I have a Sony TCM-5000 EV gathering dust on a shelf, and breathe a sigh of relief every time I look at it, that I no longer have to lug the equivalent of 2 house bricks around when I go on foreign birding trips!

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Old Sunday 18th June 2017, 04:14   #3
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I'm interested to know how the quality compares with say a mid range digital recorder. Does even an expensive tape recorder have some tape hiss?
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Old Sunday 18th June 2017, 13:10   #4
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Hi. The audio quality is very good at 7.5 IPS speed, the only speed I use anyway.
Sure there is some tape hiss, but very negligible, way down in level, and I use good Sennheiser headphones too.
The internal mic noise is more noticeable than the tape hiss. If you use a good sensitive & high level output mic, there is no problem with any tape hiss noise on the recordings.
Sorry, but I must say the Sony TCM-5000 sounds not so good, the freq response spec for it is terrible !
I have never been a fan of cassette tapes, they are not up to par with open reel quarter inch tape that uses either full track or half track recording.
Cheers, Chris
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