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The AI016 Tape Interface Module! Tape Echo!
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Eurorack Modules  
Author The AI016 Tape Interface Module! Tape Echo!
abelovesfun


https://aisynthesis.com/product/ai016-eurorack-tape-echo-interface/

The AI016 Eurorack Tape Echo Interface is a Limited Edition Module that uses a pre-amp and buffered feedback loops to allow a standard three head tape recorder as an analog tape echo. It's essentially the classic echo-matic circuit, updated for Eurorack.

The tape recorder must have three heads (erase, record, and play) for it to work as a tape echo. This type of tape recorder will have a button or switch that allows the monitoring of the source audio, or what has just been recorded to the tape. The space between the record and play head creates the delay, and the Tape Interface feeds back into the unit to create repeats.

The AI016 provides the following tape controls:

    Mix
    Repeats
    Input and Output Controls
    Delay time is controlled by the tape deck. Not all tape decks allow speed control while recording, and modifications may be needed.


You can buy 'em with a warranty or build them yourself.
synonymist
abelovesfun wrote:
https://aisynthesis.com/product/ai016-eurorack-tape-echo-interface/

The AI016 Eurorack Tape Echo Interface is a Limited Edition Module that uses a pre-amp and buffered feedback loops to allow a standard three head tape recorder as an analog tape echo. It's essentially the classic echo-matic circuit, updated for Eurorack.

The tape recorder must have three heads (erase, record, and play) for it to work as a tape echo. This type of tape recorder will have a button or switch that allows the monitoring of the source audio, or what has just been recorded to the tape. The space between the record and play head creates the delay, and the Tape Interface feeds back into the unit to create repeats...

Very cool! This is an excellent idea. smile

Damn kids these days don't know the value of real tape echo. This'll show 'em!
you kids get off my lawn
abelovesfun
Thanks! I keep reading posts that say "I want a lo-fi, tape crinkle sound" so I figured - here's a way to get it! The input also has the ability to do op-amp distortion for 4-track style distortion.
DMR
Looks interesting, I imagine you could put the send and return jacks through a VCA to get voltage controlled feedback / repeats as well.
DMR
DMR wrote:
Looks interesting, I imagine you could put the send and return jacks through a VCA to get voltage controlled feedback / repeats as well.


Or perhaps not, actually.
brandonlogic
cool, i was thinking about building one of these inside the er301 for my marantz tape deck, and add some filtering in the feedback path too
abelovesfun
DMR wrote:
DMR wrote:
Looks interesting, I imagine you could put the send and return jacks through a VCA to get voltage controlled feedback / repeats as well.


Or perhaps not, actually.


I kept the send and return as euro, because you can send it into other modules. Obvious candidates are tape-like modules, but I am very interested into what people come up with!
ersatzplanet
Back in the day I have turned many stereo tape reel to reel decks into echo machines. most any semi-pro machine with tape monitoring will work. The easiest are those with mic and line inputs that can be used at the same time and have their own level controls. Just a case of cross patching to make it work.

Here is an added bit - Make sure the tape deck has a DC capstan motor because than it is an easy mod to make it vary-speed. Look on the back where the power cable enters and look for a 50-60 cycle switch. If it doesn't have one, the capstan is a DC motor (R2R decks with AC capstan motors get their speed regulation from the AC cycle frequency). Open the beast up and look for a small PCB on or near the Capstan motor. It is highly likely that there will be a boar with trimmers for each of the speeds the deck will do. Buy a pot the same value as the trimmer and wire it via a switch to replace one of the trimmers. Mount the pot and switch and there you go. I have done this with multiple Sony R2R decks and it is similar on most other brands I have seen. The pot will allow the tape speed to run from faster than normal to dead stop. The switch will bring you back to standard speed. You don't want to run it for long on extremely slow speeds because the motor will heat up. You can also use this for playback and get great textures from ordinary recordings dropped down multiple octaves but the problem there is the Bias oscillator that was recorded, will also drop down to where it is an audible high frequency whine. At normal echo speeds, you will not hear it.
abelovesfun
Thanks James!
On the product page there is a link to a short article about finding an appropriate cassette deck. On the bottom of that page is a guide to modding a PMD221 to add speed control. I hope to catalog and include guides to other tape machines there as well!
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