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Re: [ARSCLIST] SSS Agfa [WAS: Ampex 456 and Shamrock 041 Manufacturing Specs?]

Tommy Sjöberg:

> I worked on a digitizing project for Universal 
> music some years ago, doing several thousand 
> tapes. I totally agree about Ampex 456 - the few 
> we didn't bake sure smelled like they would need 
> baking, but weren't shedding, just yet.

I have seen it stated that Ampex/Quantegy 456 is good after 1994 and
stock made before that year needs baking and stock after that is fine.

If what I have experienced this is not correct.

I have had 456 tapes bought new in 2001 transferred cleanly by me from a
Studer A820 the same year to be SSS when trying to transfer again the
exact same tapes in 2008.

> We never encountered a Basf tape that needed 
> baking, 

That agrees with my own experience and my sources within Swedish Radio
who used tons of BASF and AGFA tapes agrees so far.

> and the same for Agfa with one, big 
> exception and that is PEM 469, until they changed 
> the formulation sometime around 1990. All earlier 
> 469's were baked. 

The AGFA 469 tape has been so rare for me that I simply have not enough
experience to have any opinon but what I have had so far is OK.

The official info from AGFA sources in Sweden was that production during
about half a year for AGFA 468 would go SSS.

469 was not mentioned at all.

> A few 468's were also a bit 
> sticky and were baked and then played fine, but 
> if that was SSS I don't know.

I do believe that this is SSS as that is what I have heard from AGFA
Sweden and they claimed that it was from certain batches during half a
year or so.

A long time friend since the early 70´s who passed away some time ago,
Mats Hellberg, producer/engineer/drummer/record label owner/ used AGFA
468 almost his whole career and we never saw SSS from his use of AGFA

Mats Hellberg and I noted some shedding from the matt backing, sometimes
a lot, for certain lots of production, but this occured only during part
of the 80´s and this never went sticky shed so I see it as no big deal
since after tape cleaning it played just fine.

The AGFA 468 coming from RMGI was felt by Mats Hellberg to be a clone
for AGFA 468, based on a few hundred reels bought, and I personally saw
no problems at all when trensferring his tapes to digital to make the CD

The actual shed on tape guides, heads etc, was so insignificant that
even using a magnifying glass at 8X, almost nothing could be seen after
having transferred 10 reels in a row.


Goran Finnberg
The Mastering Room AB

E-mail: mastering@xxxxxxxxx

Learn from the mistakes of others, you can never live long enough to
make them all yourself.    -   John Luther

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