DAT tapes to Imac computer

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Mjsjazz, Sep 26, 2020.

  1. Mjsjazz

    Mjsjazz New Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Black mountain, nc
    Hi. I am new to this forum. I am a 69 year old professional jazz musician with over 100 DAT tape recordings I would like to move over to my IMAC computer so I can listen to them for possible future releases. I have 2 DAT decks: One is a Tascam DA 20 and the other is a Technics SV DA 10. Is there any way to move these recordings over to my computer? It appears they both have digital coaxial inputs and outputs but as I am not an engineer I do not exactly know what that means? My IMAC is from 2017. I have an ethernet cable connected for high speed internet and a Scarlett 4X4 audio interface which allows me to teach online and perform in real time on online. Any assistance would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. Apesbrain

    Apesbrain Forum Resident

    Location:
    East Coast, USA
    Connect the Scarlett to the iMac via USB. Connect the analog out from either DAT deck to the Scarlett analog inputs (front or back panel). You'll need a pair of "RCA-to-TS" cables:

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B000068O17/

    Play DAT and record using whatever recording software is available on your iMac, e.g. GarageBand.
     
  3. formbypc

    formbypc Forum Resident

    Consult local websites or brick and mortar stores for suppliers who routinely sell studio and recording equipment. Browse for, or ask their advice for, a USB interface which will accept a digital input from the digital output from your Tascam/Technics.

    Alternatively, FWIW, my method is to use a standalone recorder connected to the DAT machine. I used to use an Alesis Masterlink, now a Tascam DA-3000. Any of the Tascam solid-state recorders will do the same job. Saves having to move the DAT to the computer room, or the computer to the DAT room.

    Record to the standalone recorder using digital input, this will save your DAT tape as a WAV file. Use a USB stick to transfer the WAV files from the standalone to the PC. Then edit them if necessary with Audacity, or other DAW software.

    Depends on how much you want to spend on the project, but I assume the tapes are important to you, so it's worth doing properly
     
  4. Dubmart

    Dubmart Forum Resident

    Location:
    Bristol, UK
    All I can add is that you should do it as soon as possible, DAT tapes are not a secure choice for long term reliable storage and if you do release anything on a physical format vinyl is the way ahead.
     
  5. Ilusndweller

    Ilusndweller S.H.M.F.=>Reely kewl.

    Location:
    Columbus, Ohio
    I used to use a coax/usb interface box called an Opcode Datport. Not sure what is currently available, the last time I used mine was 2001 and I think they went out of business. Ive also got a Technics SVDA-10.
     
    cnolanh likes this.
  6. formbypc

    formbypc Forum Resident

    I concur. DAT is/was the most fragile format I ever owned.

    I treated them well, but the portable machines became misaligned and misbehaved long before they should have.
     
    johnny q likes this.
  7. Mjsjazz

    Mjsjazz New Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Black mountain, nc
    Thanks. I just ordered the cable! Glad I joined this web site!!!! Great advice.
     
  8. Mjsjazz

    Mjsjazz New Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Black mountain, nc
    Thanks. This is a great idea. Will look into a stand alone recorder. Could I use my Ipad or Iphone???
     
  9. formbypc

    formbypc Forum Resident

    To transfer the files? I don't think so. USB sticks are cheap and readily available.
     
  10. Boltman92124

    Boltman92124 Fish tacos.

    Location:
    San Diego
    Back in the day, I transferred all of my DAT collection to CD using a Denon CD recorder. Then I ripped the CD's onto my server later on. So I have both digital and physical media. But that's stick and stones from years ago.
     
    BruceS likes this.
  11. harby

    harby Forum Resident

    Location:
    Portland, OR, USA
    Back in the day, you could also use a DDS2 backup drive and the right software on SGI, MAC, or Linux to rip the digital audio right off the tape (which should be the same digital that comes out of SPDIF you can digitally record.)

    >20 year old hardware and software required.

    [​IMG]
     
    vwestlife likes this.
  12. BruceS

    BruceS El Sirviente del Gato

    Location:
    Reading, MA US
    I have done similar with my minidiscs. Recorded them to CD-RW and then ripped. Excellent results, as always depending on source quality. I still do this on occasion, when needed. I should think that DAT > CD would be even better. I haven't saved all that many of the minis, though. Nothing wrong with a little old-schooledness!
     
    Boltman92124 likes this.
  13. Boltman92124

    Boltman92124 Fish tacos.

    Location:
    San Diego
    Unfortunately, that dual well Denon CD recorder bit the dust pretty quickly. I still have my Denon DTR2000g anniversary edition DAT machine. It actually works still but some of the tapes are toast. Glad I did it when I did it.
     
    BruceS likes this.
  14. BruceS

    BruceS El Sirviente del Gato

    Location:
    Reading, MA US
    Double DAC chips on that Denon DAT, which is enshrined on TVK:
    Denon DTR-2000G on thevintageknob.org
    For some reason, the audio gods whispered in my ear every time I considered getting rid of any of my three standalone CD recorders. Like their owner, they are at times cranky, but basically still work.
     
    Boltman92124 likes this.
  15. Boltman92124

    Boltman92124 Fish tacos.

    Location:
    San Diego
    Cool link. Thanks! Yes, mine has the 80th anniversary badge along with the plug in side wood panels. It is the Japanese version and needs the electric converter. All this talk about it and I might set it up this weekend for fun!
     
  16. BruceS

    BruceS El Sirviente del Gato

    Location:
    Reading, MA US
    I guess you should—sounds like a fun thing to do! I have a gold, Japan-version Sony MXD-D400 CD/MD deck that requires a 120 > 100 v. converter. Glad you liked the link. I have spent countless hours there, usually when I was getting paid to do something else. :)
     

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