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Are your Audio Tapes Still Good?

by | Jan 5, 2017

Are your Audio Tapes Still Good?

Ever since CD and MP3 formats have come into popularity, audio tapes have been long forgotten by many. They sit in forgotten corners of basements and attics, often improperly stored. So, how do you know if your audio tapes are still good? Read on to learn about the most common kinds of damage they face and whether their content can be salvaged.

Physical Damage

The most prevalent type of damage, physical damage comes in many forms. Often the tape is scratched or snapped or the cassette shell is broken or melted. Thankfully, the tape’s content is usually salvageable through re-splicing or shell replacement.

Magnetic Damage

This common type of damage occurs when the tape’s magnetic strip is degraded. The magnetic strip is where the content is stored. Improper storage or exposure to magnetic fields leads to the damage of the magnetic strip, usually rendering the tape unplayable.

Storage-Related Damage

Audio tapes require proper storage to promote their longevity. Extended time in heat melts the case’s plastic shell or causes the tape to warp, which damages the audio quality. It’s best to store your tapes in a cool, dry environment to prevent losing your audio tape’s content.

A Few Things to Remember:

  • Keep tapes in their cases between uses.
  • Avoid extreme, rapid weather changes.
  • Avoid contact with water, magnetic fields, or exposure to direct sunlight.
  • When repairing an audio tape, wear lint-free gloves and try to avoid touching the surface of the tape.
  • Avoid storing audio tapes on top of equipment or anything magnetic.
  • Avoid directly handling the magnetic tape, as your fingers have destructive oils.
  • Do not play scratched or dusty tapes in cassette players, as this can damage the equipment.

Questions About Your Audio Tapes? Call!

At Disc Hounds, we’ve seen it all when it comes to audio tapes. Our qualified experts inspect and repair damaged tapes in order to save your memories. Call us at 610-696-8668 today!