View Full Version : Storing Tapes ?

20-12-2016, 11:02
A while back I read about storing tapes when not being played.
It was said that they should be stored tails out ( I assume this would only apply to 2 track machines ) IE: play or record to end of tape then put away, and not
after rewinding or fast forwarding.

Anything in this, or is it one of those OCD snake oil things ?

20-12-2016, 11:05
Store your tapes upright in a constant temperature and humidity environment. In the UK, normal room temp should be fine, but in hotter climates e.g. Florida, you need an air conditioned vault.

One of the issues is print through. You can avoid this by fast forward and rewinding your tapes once every few months. Best to use a library wind function, if your tape deck has this (it provides a more even tape pack).

If you store the tape with tail out, any print through is heard as a post-echo, which is easier on the ear than a pre-echo, if you store the tape heads out. Mind you, some studios store their tapes head out anyway.

mr sneff
20-12-2016, 11:36
I always used to store tapes (both 2 track and multi-track) tail out. As I understood it at the time, print through was more likely to occur if the tapes was fast rewound or fast forwarded as the tape would be more tightly, and possibly unevenly, wound at high speed.

20-12-2016, 11:40
Indeed, although 2 track is mostly effected i think. Good practice though to do that.

20-12-2016, 22:38
Print through is due to one part of the tape being in close proximity with the tape layer both in front of it and behind it. Whether the tapes are stored 'tails in' or 'out' won't alter this, but storing tapes 'tails out' will result in print through being an echo (and possibly masked by the tape content), rather than as a pre-echo which is more noticable and less desirable.

As to storing tapes in general, choose a place that offers a cool, non-humid environment that is free from any stray magnetic fields. Some prefer to use a steel storage cabinet.