Skip to main content

20 year old 2" tape

Member for

21 years 2 months
I was just given a reel of Ampex 456 at +3/250 15 ips recorded in 1982 to replace a vocal track and mix. My MCI is setup for +6/250 30ips.

(1) How do/will I know if the tape will require baking.
(2) How will I need to set up the MCI. If I switch to IEC will this be sufficent for record (1 or 2 tracks) and playback?

I realize that to most of you these are probably lame questions but this is my first expetience with this so please give me some options.


Member for

21 years 2 months

Pro Audio Guest Sun, 01/13/2002 - 11:22
In addition to the above mentioned site -which I hsven't looked at 'cos I ain't got the time- if your tape is Ampex then it is almost guaranteed that it will need baking. The way to tell is to wind a short amount preferably where there is no audio. If it is tail out then you might be in luck. Then look at the guides to see if any brown residue has accumulated. If it has then bake it. If it hasn't then try playing a bit and see if the heads start collecting oxide off the tape. If they have then bake it. If not then you are a lucky man.

If you do have to bake it then it is recommended that the first pass over the heads is for a copy to the same or other format.

Re. levels Your tape may be NAB -more likely- not IEC and the best way to resolve all level and eq. issues is to speak to somebody on the phone as it is too much to go into here.

Good luck