Cassette Decks

Page 3 - Seeking answers? Join the What HiFi community: the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products.

froze

Well-known member
Dec 27, 2022
14
2
525
Visit site
I agree with getting a high-quality used deck, then taking it to a shop and have it gone through. Most of these decks on the used market weren't used much, especially after CDs came out, so finding a mid-90s era deck will probably mean a lot less wear than one from before the 90s.

Blank cassette tape is still out there, Maxell still has a lot of the UR series you can buy brand new on Amazon but the sound quality for music isn't as good as the UDXL II was, but it is fairly cheap to buy a brick of them. If you look hard enough you can find the Maxwell XL II but it will cost you about $55 for a brick of 5 instead of $55 for a carton of 20 UL. When buying tape, do not buy any tape over 90 minutes long, the longer the tape is the more that tape can warp due to them having to make longer tape thinner so it could fit inside a cassette; 60 minutes would be ideal, but finding 60-minute tape is extremely difficult.

Also with a cassette deck, you do need to know how and what to use to demagnetize the heads, and clean the heads and capstan rollers, but you have to something different on the capstan rollers or you'll damage the rubber.

When looking at used decks just google them to see if that particular model is a good model, there were a lot of good models, but there were more not-so-good ones.
 

Gray

Well-known member
I still own decks from Akai, JVC, Sony, Pioneer and others and cassettes from just about every brand of tape there ever was.

(I lived near an Estuary Audio shop on the estuary in Leigh-On-Sea. Anyone that remembers that name, will know why I bought so many tapes - they sold virtually nothing but blank tape at the best prices - so I had to try them all).

Never erased any recording I made - still got them all - the earliest being a few Laskys C60s from 52 years ago.

All the above is true for no other reason than because I'm a hoarder 🙄.
 
I still own decks from Akai, JVC, Sony, Pioneer and others and cassettes from just about every brand of tape there ever was.

(I lived near an Estuary Audio shop on the estuary in Leigh-On-Sea. Anyone that remembers that name, will know why I bought so many tapes - they sold virtually nothing but blank tape at the best prices - so I had to try them all).

Never erased any recording I made - still got them all - the earliest being a few Laskys C60s from 52 years ago.

All the above is true for no other reason than because I'm a hoarder 🙄.
I resemble that remark! I loved cassettes and would read every detail about them. Do you remember TopTape, I think it was called, based around North London or Watford area? They often had great prices. The shop I worked in sometimes bought from them cheaper than the normal trade supplier!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Gray

Freddy58

Well-known member
Jan 24, 2014
149
148
18,770
Visit site
I always used to use TDK SA’s, pretty reliable. Then I discovered Thats MRX Pro, a metal tape that I used on my (then) Denon DRM 12HX, a decent deck. Thats tapes were a bit pricey, but were well made and could handle pretty much anything you threw at them (sonically).
 
  • Like
Reactions: Gray

Gray

Well-known member
I resemble that remark! I loved cassettes and would read every detail about them. Do you remember TopTape, I think it was called, based around North London or Watford area? They often had great prices. The shop I worked in sometimes bought from them cheaper than the normal trade supplier!
I do remember Top Tape.
Those shops have a lot to answer for 🙂
Ferric, chrome, ferrichrome, metal and honestly, you name a brand from Agfa to Yashima and I've got it - ridiculous extravagance just for the sake of it 🙄
 

Gray

Well-known member
I always used to use TDK SA’s, pretty reliable. Then I discovered Thats MRX Pro, a metal tape that I used on my (then) Denon DRM 12HX, a decent deck. Thats tapes were a bit pricey, but were well made and could handle pretty much anything you threw at them (sonically).
I think TDK SA was about the best choice - chrome position without the head wear of genuine chrome 👍
 

Freddy58

Well-known member
Jan 24, 2014
149
148
18,770
Visit site
I think TDK SA was about the best choice - chrome position without the head wear of genuine chrome 👍
TDK SA’s were a good all rounder, but couldn’t handle some of the dynamics I started to listen to at the time unless I set the input levels really low, not ideal. I’d just built some speakers based on the KEF Concord which could display pretty impressive/tight/low bass. I had been introduced to recordings on the ‘Telarc’ label . A feature of those recordings are massive crescendos. The speakers handled it with ease but I needed a tape to do likewise. Thats where ‘Thats MRX Pro’ came in, it took a lot to saturate them.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Gray

TRENDING THREADS