Media Services

Magnetic tape has an estimated lifespan of between 10-20 years. No matter the brand, every tape will eventually deteriorate. Even if a tape is beginning to deteriorate (feeling sticky) there is a good chance we can save it. Let Deep Signal Studios preserve your audio media in the digital domain and give it an infinite lifespan. AMPEX brand open reel audio tapes (i.e. Ampex 456) require immediate attention due to the sub-standard adhesive used in the manufacturing process. These tapes are at particular risk of completely deteriorating to the point of no return.

Quarter inch (1/4") reels are probably the most recognized open reel type in the world. This type of tape has been used in homes and recording studios alike dating back over 60 years. Pre-dating the compact cassette, 1/4" decks were used for recording everything from live studio sessions to dictation. Many record labels released commercial music on this format as well. In a studio environment, stereo 1/4" was often used for multi-track mixdowns, or live recordings (such as a radio broadcast).

Half inch magnetic tape has been in use both professionally ,and later in the home studio environment beginning in the 1970s. The two and four track format, made popular by the AMPEX ATR-100 series, set a new standard for high-end multi-track recording. Many engineers still use these decks to this day for multi-tracking and stereo mixdowns (master recordings). Later, other reel-to-reel manufacturers adopted the use of 1/2" tape for even greater track counts. One of the more popular 1/2" multi-track decks to come out early on was the TEAC 80-8, which allowed for 8 tracks of audio recording.

The 2 inch 16 and 24 track reel formats are two of the most famous professional recording formats of all time. A staple in recording studios since the 1970s, these formats allowed for multi-track audio recording with minimal bounces and cutting/splicing due the greater number of available tracks. With 16 to 24 available tracks, entire sessions could be recorded without syncing multiple reel to reel decks.

Pro Tools, originally named "Sound Tools" was first launched in 1989. At that stage it was a basic audio editor for stereo files. After further enhancement, a new version of the program was developed and renamed Pro Tools, which offered 4 tracks of digital audio recording. Digidesign continued to enhancement the Pro Tools software, added a MIDI sequencer and multitrack recording at 16-bit / 44.1 KHz. By 1997, Pro Tools reached 24-bit, with support of up to 48 tracks. Since the late 1990's Pro Tools has become the industry standard for disk-based digital audio recording.

We archive floppy discs from old PCs and Macs. 5.25" (5 1/4 in) floppy discs and 3.5" (3 1/2 in)discs data can be converted to a modern readable file type ranging from text documents and midi sequence files. We can read audio files and samples from Classic Mac (pre-USB) internal hard drives, IOmega Zip and Jaz and Imation Superdisk.

As with any type of magnetic tape, computer disks are subject to deterioration over time. If discs have been stored far away form speakers or CRT TVs there is a pretty good chance they are still readable. However, the clock is ticking on the machines that can read them.

Most modern digital audio workstations (DAWs) and audio editors are capable of importing only a select number of digital audio formats such as WAV, AIFF, MP3, M4A, OGG and FLAC. With the massive amount of digital audio formats that have existed through the years, many producers are no longer able to import a great deal of older audio files into their projects - let alone even audition them. Deep Signal Studios can solve the problem of incompatible, unrecognized, or unknown audio formats.

Deep Signal Studios proudly offers full audio restoration services to repair, clean up and enhance any audio material. Whether the recording suffers from room echo, pops, clicks, hums, ambient noise, or varying pitch (often present in analog transfers) we can help. Utilizing cutting-edge processing tools and mastering techniques we can diagnose complex issues and rescue a poor recording.

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