DRM: Your approach is, to me, the new view of cassettes and analog reproduction in general -- you will take the noise to get the waveform integrity. Since I started hearing this argument during the last year, have tried it myself and have gotten far more accepting of background noise. When I was used entirely to digital, could never listen to my older cassettes; the noise put me off immediately. Now, I consciously tune this out and drift into the timbre -- the vocal accuracy, instrumental attacks, etc. If you can handle the noise there is genuine value here and you realize that. You do know, I suspect, that if you listen to Dolby B tapes with the reduction off, you ARE NOT getting waveform integrity. The signal has been altered with treble boost and dynamic compression. So, what you are getting is an altered version of the performance that might sound more immediate because of the treble boost. But it will not be more accurate. Correct B decoding will provide a more accurate waveform when the original has been B encoded. Speaking of which, azimuth correction is the key here as noted above. This is why the Nakamichi Dragon and 680 lines, with their auto azimuth correction, are so sought after and expensive.