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hello i have standard tape deck (not reel to reel) type
and wish to record my old cassette tapes and save them on my computer as mp3.
that`s simple part i have two dbx 150 units and if possible? like to use one as a encoding machine.
from my tape output to one unit and the other is in decode mode to decode on fly if possible?
i tryed connecting the units as stated in the user manual but no joy.
can any one help give step by step details of connecting the tape decks phono to unit.
if on fly encode decode not possible still need help on what phoo goes where.
here is the details of back of unit and i`v tryed my best but possible end up selling them if unable use them but i don`t want to do this if possible.
CONSOLE = from consol output also to console input
TAPE MACHINE = from machine output also to machine input
tape input must be encode and output is decode?
please help i know sound stupid but i`v tryed do my best to get them to work for me.
any genuine help is most welcome.

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Boswell Thu, 09/11/2014 - 03:12

You'll have to give us a bit more information about the equipment, and maybe clarify exactly what it is you are wanting to do. For me (and probably most of the folks on this forum) a "standard tape deck" is a reel-to-reel type, but it sounds from your post as though you have a cassette deck. You also talk about wanting to record your old tapes, but I take it you mean they are already recorded and you want to replay them and make copies on your computer.

Do you already have a hardware interface for connecting the audio from your cassette deck into your computer (other than the computer's built-in audio device)?

There's no point in trying to use a noise-reduction system such as a DBX150 on tape replay unless the tape was recorded using the DBX150 or some other compatible unit in the first place. I'm also sorry to say that I don't think your proposal for replaying the tape through a pair of DBX150 units connected back-to-back is going to achieve anything other than a further small reduction of signal quality.

Your best plan is to connect the replay outputs from your cassette deck into a simple audio interface connected to your computer and get the best digital transfer you can (noise and all) from the tapes. Once these are captured on the computer, there are several software packages you could use to clean up the recordings for things like noise reduction, artifact removal and level adjustment.

We can advise further on suitable low-cost audio interfaces if you do not already have one.

anonymous Thu, 09/11/2014 - 03:40

The DBX 150 is Type 1 NR, (I have one myself) and was designed to be used with open reel decks at a minimum speed of 7.5 ips. It was not designed to be used as an "on the fly" noise reduction system. ( Although DBX did offer the 224 model for that purpose).

As a side note, at the time the 150 was released, it was strongly suggested by DBX that the unit not be used with tape speeds below 7.5 ips, because of insufficient HF headroom, and because slower-speed tape machines really start to attenuate/roll off the top end freq's - between 10k - 15k - and at these slower speeds, the result is that the NR will present a seriously skewed encoding and decoding process; with audible phasing, pumping and bias issues. Your cassette deck - unless a high speed model running at 3.75, (which is still insufficient) - operates at 1 7/8 ips.

You'd be much better off to record your cassettes straight to your DAW, and then approach the problem using audio restoration software.