A producer friend talks of copying his album onto a reel to reel tape and back before mastering, what are you thoughts on such a maneuver?

Ott responded on 11/25/2012

There's 'tape' and then there's "tape". Not all tape is equal.

Unless you're looking for the sound of a specific machine I'd say there is little to be gained from running your mix on and off a cheap tape recorder. Or an expensive tape recorder poorly aligned.

If I had at my disposal a well-maintained and aligned Ampex ATR-100 / 102 half-inch machine and a stock of virgin tape I would probably run my masters onto that - and [mastering engineer] Kevin Metcalfe would probably agree.

But ATR-102s are becoming expensive to buy and maintain and the difference is largely academic considering most people are only going to encode the result to mp3 anyway.

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