Noise reduction for my Studer A807?

Discussion in 'Tape Recorders' started by jazzo, Jun 20, 2008.

  1. jazzo

    jazzo Active Member

    Jul 7, 2006
    Home Page:
    Hello everyone,

    I just have an used (but in good shape) Studer A807.
    Today I have recorded some music to test it and I was very surprised to hear how good and different the sound was!

    I did an CD audio extract of a song in Sounforge, then recorded the same track into the Studer through my cheap Tascam M30(without any EQ) and sent the tape into Soudforge.
    Then I created a project in Cubase SX and listened to the 2 versions.
    The difference was enormous, maybe because the studer had the benefit to have a mixer in front of it?

    Anyway, I noticed that there was some noise (white noise?) on the studer version of the song. So I plan to buy a noise reduction.
    I would like to know if there is one NR which is better than others for R2R? maybe a DBX something?

    Thanks for advices!
  2. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    Feb 23, 2005
    The Studer sounded better, but it wasn't because there was a Tascam mixer feeding it!!!! You should hear one of those machines with a REAL mixer pushing it!
    I'd suggest that you either learn to operate it with a low-noise desk, with everything properly calibrated, or investigate a Dolby NR system that was designed for that machine.
  3. jazzo

    jazzo Active Member

    Jul 7, 2006
    Home Page:
    Yeah I know, Tascam is cheap... but that's all I had at the moment.
    Rca to XLR do not help I think...

    The fact is that I don't know if there was a Dolby NR system designed for the Studer machine! That's why I'm looking for advices.

    I know dbx made some noise reduction system but there are so many of them I don't know what to choose!
    any experiences?
  4. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    Feb 23, 2005
    There are many causes for noise on a machine like that:
    Tape quality
    Head conditions
    Component conditions
    Operating conditions
    And many others, NONE of which are improved by an outboard NR unit.
    If you want to get the best out of that machine, you need to learn more about it and how to tweak it. Throwing an outboard box at it is not a smart thing to do at this stage. I remember that, in the "golden age" of Studer's analog days, their recorders were used with NO NR. I used to have a Revox (Studer's "hi-fi" line), it did great recordings of live mixes, no NR for that. Do some homework. Or sell it :)
  5. jazzo

    jazzo Active Member

    Jul 7, 2006
    Home Page:
    Sell it? NO WAY :wink: I love this machine and want some more!

    You're right, I will try to do some research and test. I know that heads are good. Maybe tapes and calibration.

  6. porkyc

    porkyc Active Member

    Mar 22, 2008
    Studer and noise

    The previous guy is right. If the machine is not correctly aligned and biased, you'll be there all day trying to get rid of noise.
    Most of the best stuff I was ever involved with was 30ips at Ampex +6 operating level with 2dB of overbias at 10 Khz and Ampex 456/499. Personally, I preferred MCI machines, but there was a lot of Studer fans out there.

    Best NR
    Dolby SR

    The dBx system was actually capable of very good noise reduction, but it only had one compander system, (ie was not bandsplit into 4 with different attack/release rates for the 4 bands), so you couldn't use it on bass, piano (sharp transients), drums. Pretty much most of your basic tracks actually. Good on vocals, guitars, saxes.

    The Telefunken system was developed because they had made a 32-track machine on 2" tape, but had had to reduce the operating level to such an extent they were now down in the tape noise. 1:1.5 ratio companders, band split not level concious.

    One studio in London (Angel Studios, actually) did a comparison of Ampex ATR124 with Telefunken NR against Sony 3324, through a Neve console; no prizes for guessing which sounded the best. Analog blew the digits away!

    BUT, any NR system requires the whole system to be well calibrated, especially Dolby which is level-concious. I could get into whether Americans could line up tape machines properly................
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