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Routing a Tape Machine through Daw


NovaAaron

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Hey everyone, my dad has this old cool Ampex tape machine. Its all tube, I was planning on running my mixes through it to add a bit of color to the music. I know some of you are thinking "why not us the tape as well". Well its an old unit and the rewind/fastforward is really fast, like two fast. When ever I try and stop the tape it falls off. So I put some decent tubes in it and just wanna see if it adds some warmth,.

 

I tested it, by running my ipod through it then imputing it back into Presonus Firestudio I have. It sounded decent. I would rather have the signal flowing out of the Presonus to the Ampex then back in the Presonus.

 

How can I do this? I could come out of the stereo outs in the back of the Presonus. Would that be best? How do I only monitor the recorded signal and not hear the playback of the original in Logic?

 

Thanks

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1) Set the output of all your tracks to Out 3-4.

2) Connect outputs 3 & 4 on the Presonus to your tape machine's inputs.

3) Connect outputs from tape machine to two inputs on the Presonus.

4) Create a new stereo audio track set to inputs where tape machine is plugged in on the Presonus and to "Stereo Output", record enable.

 

You should hear your post tape recording.

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I guess if Nova never intends to actually record anything to tape the I/O plug-in would be fine. But to truly get a the sound of the "tape" itself (and not just the tape machine's electronics) Nova would have to, at some point, record to tape... and then my routing may prove a bit more flexible. A matter of workflow really - and yes, the I/O plug-in is a great idea if it suits Nova's workflow.
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Thanks David! I was thinking about using the tube tone from the Ampex then sending that to a stereo cassette deck. Then back into the system. The tape machine is only 1/4 inch and Im actually not sure if it records, the rewind/fastforward is really finicky as well. So would my set up be something like this?

 

1) Set the output of all your tracks to Out 3-4.

2) Connect outputs 3 & 4 on the Presonus to your tape machine's inputs.

3) Connect outputs from tape machine to the cassette deck.

4) The outputs on the cassette deck to two inputs on the Presonus.

4) Create a new stereo audio track set to inputs where tape machine is plugged in on the Presonus and to "Stereo Output", record enable.

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The connections are confusing as well.

 

The Tape machine has RCA input and 1/4 Output

The Cassette Tapeplayer has RCA Input and RCA Output

The Presonus has 1/4 outputs and a AUX input (RCA).

 

 

A) Presonus Out (1/4 RCA connecters)

B)Tape Machine in(RCA)--->1/4 (RCA connectors out)

C)Cassette in (RCA)--->(RCA) out

4) Presonus in Aux Input(RCA)

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So I used both the cassette tape idea and the Ampex. The pre-amp sounded kinda nice. Took out lots of the low end though. I am gonna use for source stuff I think. Does tape usually take out high end? I ended up getting a Kramer Master Tape in the meantime. Still messin with it.

 

Also I did by a maintenance manual for the Ampex. So hoping to get it up and running!

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