Jan/Feb 2007

Welcome to issue #57 of Tape Op.


Recently my friend, and Tape Op writer Steve Silverstein included this thought in an email to me: "I'm having a problem lately with getting too 'good' at recording and losing some of the charm that I used to achieve by accident." I love this thought and hope anyone reading this magazine can take it to heart and understand the implications.

Every few years I realize that my intros here have shifted away from the personal into the general. What's up in my life? Hold tight... I recently sold my home in Portland and my girlfriend and I bought an old house in southern Arizona. It's an ancient structure, and it's been in need a ton of work. So much of restoring a house relates, in my mind, to recording. "When do we hire a professional?" "Do I need to buy more tools?" "Can I do this with just a hammer?" Many decisions run parallel to our little world. The one thing I have noticed is that restoring a house is easier than building a studio. We'll be moving Jackpot! to a new location in Portland (yes, I'm still keeping a foot in Portland) this year and the trials and tribulations of that are yet to come. Stay tuned.

— Larry Crane, editor

In This Issue See more →


Columns See more →


Gear Reviews See more →

ProFire Lightbridge interface

by M-Audio  |  reviewed by Andy Hong

Wow. 34 inputs and 36 outputs via a single FireWire cable. 32 channels of ADAT Optical I/O at 44.1/48 kHz; 16 channels S/MUX'ed at 88.2/96 kHz. Two channels of S/PDIF I/O. Word clock in and out. Two...

ATM450 side-address condenser

by Audio-Technica  |  reviewed by Chris Garges

Audio-Technica has just released a microphone that I've been waiting on for years. The ATM450 is a small-diaphragm condenser microphone. Audio-Technica makes several excellent small-diaphragm...

AudioSkin Cable organizer

by AudioSkin  |  reviewed by John Baccigaluppi

Our pal Diane Gershuny turned us onto this handy little studio organization tool at the Austin NAMM show and sent us a few to try out. AudioSkin is one of those plastic products that wraps around...


EMI TG EQ Mastering Pack

by Chandler Limited / Abbey Road  |  reviewed by John Baccigaluppi

Abbey Road Studios along with their stateside partner, Wade Goeke of Chandler Limited, are continuing to make some of the great sounding early audio gear from the EMI empire available to us common...

Sputnik multi-pattern tube mic

by M-Audio  |  reviewed by Joel Patterson

There's hype, and then there's hype... and then there's HYPE. No buzzwords have been spared in the promotion of M-Audio's new tube microphone, the Sputnik. "The end of microphone envy," with its saucy...

China Cones

by China Cones  |  reviewed by Garrett Haines

China Cones are an isolation device used to decouple monitor speakers from the console, stand, or surface supporting them. Made of ceramic, the manufacturer claims China Cones vibrate in a frequency...

Portico 5033 parametric EQ

by Rupert Neve Designs  |  reviewed by Andy Hong

The more I use Pro Tools, the more I use outboard analog. I used to have a single table-high rack of outboard processors (not including all my preamps), but these days, I'm working with two racks full...

SHH Studio Headphone Hanger

by Stedman  |  reviewed by John Baccigaluppi

Anyone who's read my reviews in Tape Op has probably seen one of my "dealing with headphones in a busy studio sucks" rants where I complain about how my clients treat all my headphones like crap and...

Reason Pianos

by Propellerhead Software  |  reviewed by Josh Peck

Creating a sample instrument is a seemingly straightforward task-record the sound of the instrument with great fidelity, and program a sleek and usable interface to trigger that recording. However,...

L2007 Mastering Limiter plug-in

by Massey  |  reviewed by Garrett Haines

For quite sometime many have viewed Waves L2 as the best digital plug-in limiter. And over the years, there have been many challengers. While some upstarts had strengths in different uses, none seemed...

A7 active monitor

by ADAM Audio  |  reviewed by Thom Monahan

Over the last two years, mixing at The Hangar, John Baccigalupi's studio in Sacramento, I've come to rely on the pair of ADAM P22As that John has in the control room there. They've been just about my...

MA-2.2 TX mic preamp

by Buzz Audio  |  reviewed by Chris Garges

Having never used any Buzz Audio products before, I was intrigued at the prospect of checking out this 2-channel Class A preamp. The 1RU-height box features a nice array of front-panel controls for...

Audio Kontrol 1

by Native Instruments  |  reviewed by Rich Hardesty

Native Instruments-a company whose reputation was built on software as opposed to hardware-just released their Audio Kontrol 1 into a market already crowded with affordable portable recording...

Live 6

by Ableton  |  reviewed by Walt Szalva

I finally got hip to Live. I used to think it was primarily for stage use, but I've since realized that its ease-of-use (hey, if you can perform with it, it better have an extremely efficient UI)...

Analog Factory

by Arturia  |  reviewed by John Baccigaluppi

I love the Arturia plug-ins and so does Dana Gumbiner. Between the two of us, we've reviewed every plug-in synth they've ever released. But as much as I think the plug-ins are amazing, I use them less...

Macht 12x guitar amp

by Savage Audio  |  reviewed by Allen Farmelo

Last winter, I got my hands on a Savage Macht 12x guitar amplifier and haven't tracked guitars without it since. For technical details and configuration options, visit the website. I'm going to focus...

Mbox 2 Mini

by Digidesign  |  reviewed by Andy Hong

The Mbox 2 Mini is the most compact of Digidesign's Pro Tools systems; it's almost exactly the same size as a stack of four CD jewel cases. It has some heft due to its robust metal enclosure; I...

DigiMAX FS 8-channel preamp

by PreSonus  |  reviewed by Andy Hong

When this unit arrived in my studio, my first assumption was that it was a "remix" of the DigiMAX 96 or LT, both of which are fine units and sound pretty good, especially for their price. But...


Tape Op is a bi-monthly magazine devoted to the art of record making.

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