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That com truise, VHS sound


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  • That com truise, VHS sound


    I just wrote an article in which I bounced a drum loop to VHS and back.

    This is the resulting audio from the experiement:




    Given the age of what you're most likely to pull out of a thrift store, I don't think it's really worth it unless you're going to go purhcase a used, but well maintained reel to reel. Or unless that is, you like the distortion and grittyness. Plugins may be the way to go on this one.


    Give me my moog, but **** off you american techno rockstar! people in countries I've never been to do it better than you!

    Computer Music Guide

  • #2

    great article dude, enjoyed reading it. 


    here's my take on the VCR thing - i have a couple of them, and do occasionally use them for audio in addition to the silly video stuff i do. one which i have 'deconstructed', partially dissasembled for better access and use in conjunction with several strong magnets. the other is a two deck unit, which allows for bouncing from one to the other, creating generational inconsistincies and degradation for each bounce. 


    for drums, i totally agree with you. i don't think there's anything special about recording drums to VCR rather than using a reel to reel, or hell even a cassette deck. you're losing some low end, adding some interesting high end artifacts that reel to reels and cassettes don't really add, but all in all it's not my go to device for drums. there's so many ways to saturate drums in this day and age!


    for pads, sustained sounds etc i think it's awesome. both of my VCRs are not the best, and as a result you hear a lot of pitch fluctuation upon playback of the recorded sound - stuff that's difficult to hear with drums. i would have to ask the man himself, but i'm guessing that's what Mr. Truise uses his VCRs for. the VCR sort of took over the "BOC sickly pad" role from the 1/2inch tape deck i was using - mainly because it's so much more compact, easy to use, and i don't feel bad about completely messing it up. it definitely helps to use a home-recorded tape that's quite a few years old. sounds great, lots of interesting hiss, lots more wobble than cassette or reel to reel or even the RE201, a great tool. 


    by manipulating the magnets around the motor, you can accentuate those pitch shifts by changing the motor speed - sometimes i'll also scrape some razor blades along the tape itself before recording, especially if it's a newer VHS tape. i've already blown up one VCR doing this (magnets locked up the motor), so do so at your own peril.