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Re: [ARSCLIST] Obsolete audio cassette formats query

There were about half-a-dozen others which used 1/4" tape. I haven't the
time to properly identify and list them, but they share one attribute in
common. The tape can be removed from its enclosure, wound onto an empty
reel, and played back on a reel-to reel with one of the then-normally
available head configurations.  The great advantage is that you can use
machines which have a minimum of tape motion ills built in.

I have one system that put two 5" reels into a metal case, making a 18 wheel
versuion of the audio cassette.  It's in a box somewhere.

Steve Smolian

----- Original Message -----
From: "Sarah Stauderman" <StaudermanS@xxxxxx>
To: <ARSCLIST@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Wednesday, June 18, 2003 10:20 AM
Subject: [ARSCLIST] Obsolete audio cassette formats query

> In Alan Ward's "A Manual of Sound Archive Administration" there are
> references to the beginnings of the audio cassettes or "encased 'talking
> books'" (p.163) beginning with RCA's 1958 cassette system, followed by
> Garrard in 1959, and then CBS in 1961.
> I am seeking additional information on any other cassette formats in these
> transitional years 1960-1970 before the Philips compact cassette and the
> 8-track tape become standards in the market.  I have not been able to find
> much more than Ward's introduction.
> Ward goes on to state "expert knowledge of obsolete cassette types is
> unlikely to enjoy much application as the chance of finding a compatible
> machine is remote and only a small minority were used in any quantity for
> other than prerecorded commercial releases" (p171).  Be that as it may, I
> currently developing a pictorial guide to audio formats that I hope to go
> beyond the commonplace formats (much like my guide to videotape formats at
> www.video-id.com )
> This information will be presented at the Sound Savings preservation
> conference in Austin next month, so any leads on other obsolete cassette
> formats would be greatly appreciated (and acknowledged).
> Best,
> Sarah
> Sarah Stauderman
> Preservation Manager
> Smithsonian Institution Archives
> MRC 414 Room 2135 A&I
> 202-357-1421 x 56 (telephone)
> 202-357-2395 (fax)
> staudermans@xxxxxx

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