TASCAM 414 MK II different playback speeds?

Discussion in 'TASCAM Analog Forum' started by fuzzylogic, Oct 14, 2021.

  1. fuzzylogic

    fuzzylogic New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2021
    Messages:
    5
    Likes:
    0
    Gear:
    Tascam 414 MK11
    Hi all.

    I'm using my tascam to record audio onto tape, samples mostly, and then use that audio to process through a walkman through my eurorack modular.

    The problem I'm facing is that when I put the tape into the walkman the playback speed is very different. Usually much slower. I have the pitch recording at 12 o'clock.

    Am I missing something obvious?
    ====
    Problem 2:
    I have a second 414 MKII, but the volume input and output on all channels is very low. Basically I need to crank it up to +12 on my mixer. The monitor pot is also very crackly and glitchy.

    I took it to a vintage equipment repair place to have a look at in Spain, but I don't think they understood the problem, and they are not dedicated in TASCAM repairs.

    Anyone know anyone in Europe that can fix these nifty machines?

    Thanks!
  2. Laszlo

    Laszlo New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2019
    Messages:
    72
    Likes:
    17
    From:
    Near Budapest, Hungary
    Gear:
    Tascam Ampex Mechlabor
    Hello,

    These multitracks record at double speed, in order to reach a decent sound quality. Playing it back on a normal machine will sound obviously slow.
    fuzzylogic likes this.
  3. fuzzylogic

    fuzzylogic New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2021
    Messages:
    5
    Likes:
    0
    Gear:
    Tascam 414 MK11
    Hi Lazlo, thanks for your prompt reply. So how then do I record on the Tascam so it can payback on a normal machine?
  4. SkywaveTDR

    SkywaveTDR Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 2014
    Messages:
    1,068
    Likes:
    222
    From:
    Chicago area
    Gear:
    Teac, Tascam, Sony
    Many if not all Porta Studios are designed with double speed (3.75 IPS) speed and the use of ONLY Chrome type tape. Some models have a low speed setting. IF you deck has switch speed then the low speed will be what to record on. If the machines do not match then one or both could be wrong and a speed tape and frequency counter is used to calibrate them. Walkmans are NOT high precision devices and some Porta Studio deck use chinese motors in them that can drift a lot. There is a way to calibrate them but you need the speed test tape and the deck usually is opened up for this. A deck that has only high speed in it will never record the right speed on a Walkman as it is made to a different speed standard. The 414Mk II is 3.75 IPS. as below- upload_2021-10-14_11-5-37.png
  5. fuzzylogic

    fuzzylogic New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2021
    Messages:
    5
    Likes:
    0
    Gear:
    Tascam 414 MK11
    Thanks Skywave. That is very helpful. So how does one go about home recording onto cassette tape so that it can be played on a normal tape deck. I think about this as a few labels are asking for demo cassette tapes only. If they don't have a tape deck that is calibrated at the same speed as my Tascam? Do you know what would be a good home recording tape deck that could be used for demo tape recording?
  6. SkywaveTDR

    SkywaveTDR Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 2014
    Messages:
    1,068
    Likes:
    222
    From:
    Chicago area
    Gear:
    Teac, Tascam, Sony
    You use a regular deck that is high quality and made correctly- there are a lot of them but the ones I have restored recently have been 122 Mk II and Mk III decks. I have also restored and sold Tascam 112 Mk II but these are not at all the same as the 122 decks as it does not have a direct drive motor but still needs the mechanical tear down and old grease removed and Lubriplate 105 applied plus it uses a Gear C. The 122 mk II uses a belt but the Mk III is a gear C model.
    Teac made many decks over the years- V1RX, C-3RX, R-888X even the Z6000. They vary in cost and weight depending on how they are constructed. The Z6000 is no light weight.
  7. Arjan P

    Arjan P Veteran

    Joined:
    Oct 2012
    Messages:
    1,545
    Likes:
    993
    From:
    Netherlands
    Gear:
    DM3200 IFFW
    @fuzzylogic If you create samples in a DAW and then record onto the Tascam, you might consider time strecthing before recording onto 3.75 I/s speed tape. Shorten the sample to half the time, let the pitch also be changed and record high speed. This will result in the correct lenght and pitch on your walkman.

    IF you create recorded samples on the Tsacam itself using instruments or mics, I don't see a solution, other than to use a DAW anyway. Play back from the Tascam, record in a DAW, timestretch there, record back onto the Tascam and then playback on the walkman... Quite a process.
  8. BazzBass

    BazzBass Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2021
    Messages:
    303
    Likes:
    226
    From:
    Down Under
    Gear:
    2488 Portastudio, DR40
    anyone that only accepts demos on tape is not to be seriously courted, imho ymmv etc etc (half joking, but not really)
    -mjk- likes this.
  9. SkywaveTDR

    SkywaveTDR Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 2014
    Messages:
    1,068
    Likes:
    222
    From:
    Chicago area
    Gear:
    Teac, Tascam, Sony
    A lot of small bands are finding success with cassette tapes duplicated at real time recording facilities. These will actually make better tapes than those high speed duplications provided you do not get you blank stock for places like NAC. NAC lost one of my clients business just by the way they treated him- they don't know how to run a business.
    ALL customers are important as word spreads.
    -mjk- likes this.
  10. fuzzylogic

    fuzzylogic New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2021
    Messages:
    5
    Likes:
    0
    Gear:
    Tascam 414 MK11
    Hi everyone. Thanks so much for getting back to me.

    I've been hunting down a Tascam 122 based on your suggestion Skywave, but finding it hard to find a reliable seller.

    I was wondering if this machine 'new' will do the trick.
    https://www.thomann.de/gb/tascam_202_mkviii.htm

    I also run a small tape label, and use tapes for samples in my live shows, so something that I can record audio onto clearly would work.
  11. SkywaveTDR

    SkywaveTDR Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 2014
    Messages:
    1,068
    Likes:
    222
    From:
    Chicago area
    Gear:
    Teac, Tascam, Sony
    The 202 is chinese junk. The model 122 has three versions. First is the old capstan Belt 122 that also was labeled the 122B if it had XLR connectors added to it rear panel. This is based on the C-3 transport. The best deck of the C-3 was the model called C-3RX that had dBx built in and did NOT have the two speeds. The original 122 had two speeds but to find a motor like this is near impossible as it was a modified motor.
    The next 122 was the Mk II with cam belt and direct drive- this was the best one they made with all kinds of adjustments inside.
    After that they improved on that- which means made it cheaper. This then took all the many adjustment the 122 Mk II out and minimized this and then this was the Mk III.
    I was working on one last night. The capstan motor in each newer ones has to be recapped as they used low grade SMD parts- I do not use SMD parts as they are never long term parts like through howl ones are. Even if you get a restored C-3RX you would be doing good. I think I have about 8 of them here.
  12. fuzzylogic

    fuzzylogic New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2021
    Messages:
    5
    Likes:
    0
    Gear:
    Tascam 414 MK11
    Hi Skywave. Thanks so much for the heads up about the 202! I'll avoid that and keep looking for a 122 MKII. There are a few floating around there on ebay that I have my eye on. Thanks again. Very helpful.