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Audio cassette transfer and Martin Parr’s The Non Conformists

1970s-audio-cassettes

We were recently sent a collection of recorded interviews with residents of Hebden Bridge, a mill town in the Pennines. They were recorded on regular, domestic tapes of the mid-1970s, the kind that were sold in shops such as Woolworths or WHSmith.

As magnetic cassette tapes go, these cheaper tapes can often deteriorate at a fast rate because they were aimed at a mass consumer market, and therefore not made with longevity in mind. These tapes however were in excellent condition, and no issues arose in the digitisation process.

Here is what Susie Parr told us about the project behind the tapes, and the publishing plans for the material later this year. We were very happy to be part of a creative project that will enable the stories to be shown to new audiences because of digitisation.

‘In 1975 photographer Martin Parr moved to Hebden Bridge, a mill town in the Pennines, with some friends from art school in Manchester. In a project that was to last five years, he started photographing the area, documenting a traditional culture and way of life that were slowly declining. Susie Mitchell, who also lived in Hebden Bridge, wrote about the people and places that Martin photographed. Together they built up a record of the day to day lives of mill-workers, game-keepers, coal miners, hill-farmers and chapel-goers. As part of their research, Susie and Martin would tape record their conversations with some of the characters they met. Thirty years later, the elderly audio tapes have been digitised and the photographs and texts are going to be published by Aperture in a book called The Non Conformists. In September, an exhibition will open in London.’

Below is an audio snippet of one of the tapes. This is a raw unprocessed version, notice the tape hiss inherent in these types of recordings. Sympathetic noise reduction to reduce this type of noise, can be process on these file if necessary.

parr-cassette-oral-history-snippet-1975

Posted by debra in Audio Tape, 0 comments

reel to reel transfer

studer_nab_reel_spinning

Studer A80 RC reel spinning

Over the last few years we’ve gradually built up our equipment inventory so we can now offer a wide range of audio and video transfers.

We’re very happy to offer all track formats and speeds of 1/4 inch reel to reel tape transfer.

15 inches per second (ips) and 7.5 ips speeds are normally transferred on, our pride and joy, one of two Studer A80’s. We also have a Tascam BR20 and several Revox A77’s for backup. The slower speeds and 4 track mono stereo formats are catered for by Teac and Sony machines.

30 ips, 15, 7.5 and 3.75 can also be transferred on our Sony APR 5003.

We take pride in making sure these machines are calibrated and cleaned before each transfer.

Quite often we receive tape in poor condition this is very often a result of splicing tape ‘drying out’ as it’s a bit like sellotape and the splices breaking as the tape is played.

We are able to clean, resplice and repair tape before transfer.

Prices are competitive but not published here as we’ve found each job is different and needs certain attentions that need to be quoted for on an individual basis. We are happy though to offer a assess / listen service as many customers don’t know what’s on their tapes and either don’t have a machine or their old machine is broken.

Recent work has included many valuable family history 5 inch reels. Remember tape is fragile, very susceptible to magnetic fields and doesn’t last forever. It’s worth transferring it or getting it transferred now to keep your memories safe.

You can see a more comprehensive list of all our audio equipment in our studio here:

http://thegreatbear.net/audio-tape-transfer/studio-equipment-audio/

Posted by greatbear in Audio Tape, 1 comment