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Windows 7: Not a W7 problem, but a wanted 'how-to' if poss

07 Jun 2014   #1
pawz7

win seven 32, win seven 64
 
 
Not a W7 problem, but a wanted 'how-to' if poss

Hello folks. We have been asked if we can convert some old C90 cassette tapes into something that can be played on an iPod. We said 'yes, we would give it a go' because we had done something like that using Audacity - but we know nothing about iPods - we are just computer geeks. Can you give us any pointers please? For instance what formats does the iPod use, do we have to convert to CD first, and mainly is it DIFFICULT!


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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07 Jun 2014   #2
pawz7

win seven 32, win seven 64
 
 

folks, it was a bit cheeky of me to put this post on here, so I have put it elsewhere now - the Audacity forum - which seems the better option. Besides, I have another query to post; don't want to wear you all out....
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Jun 2014   #3
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

Audacity has a good forum.

No, I wouldn't think you would need to put it on CD.

Generally, I think you would want to get the cassette recording onto the PC. You'd do that by playing it and simultaneously recording it with Audacity, probably saving it as a WAV file.

After that is done, you can worry about changing the format.

Or you could do the original save in Audacity into the format used by the iPOD if you have no intentions of editing the tape. I'm not entirely sure what that format is.

If you intend to do any editing of the cassette, such as removing hiss, omitting certain songs, etc, you should make the original save in Audacity as a WAV file, because it is a lossless format. If you first save as mp3 or some other lossy format, you will lose some sound quality when you resave after the editing. So, stay with a lossless format such as WAV until you do your final save into the iPOD format.

If you don't really want to edit the file and only need to change the file format, you could just record it onto the PC with Audacity as a WAV and then use a converter program such as Switch or Freemake to change the format.

You'll have to get your cassette player connected up to the PC in order to record the tape as it plays. That's the biggest hurdle you will face, but it's doable.
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07 Jun 2014   #4
carwiz

Windows 7 Pro-x64
 
 

"...you will lose some sound quality when you resave after the editing."

Just what kind of sound quality do you expect from 20-30 year old cassettes? I have some I'd like to save but can't find a player that still works. I wonder if mine will even play now. Audacity will save many types of files including MP3 with the add-in but I think iPod will play WAV files too, if you have the space. You don't need a converter--Especially Freemake. I saved many of my vinyls using Audacity and you can edit as you go or just copy then edit/extract individual songs then compress them.
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08 Jun 2014   #5
pawz7

win seven 32, win seven 64
 
 

you have encouraged us - and the Audacity forum has manuals on the issue as well, so it all seems achievable. Thank you both. Apparently the tape is of a spoken book ( Pilgrims Progress, by John Gielgood), but I don't suppose that makes a difference - being voice rather than music I mean. Anyway, great help. Thanks
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jun 2014   #6
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by carwiz View Post
"...you will lose some sound quality when you resave after the editing."

Just what kind of sound quality do you expect from 20-30 year old cassettes? I have some I'd like to save but can't find a player that still works. I wonder if mine will even play now. Audacity will save many types of files including MP3 with the add-in but I think iPod will play WAV files too, if you have the space. You don't need a converter--Especially Freemake. I saved many of my vinyls using Audacity and you can edit as you go or just copy then edit/extract individual songs then compress them.
It's amazing how long some cassettes will last. I have some over 20 years old and have not noticed deterioration, although I rarely play them. They were high quality in their time and remain so, possibly helped by the fact that they were all home-made with quality blanks, rather than commercially released recordings.

I edit and manicure a lot of mp3s and have never been able to detect a loss in quality by the first re-save as mp3. I once did a test, saving and resaving numerous times, and it does become noticeable eventually, but not after a single re-save. I've got a fantastic "tick, pop, and crackle" remover app from Australia that works only on WAV files, so I often convert mp3s to WAV with Audacity before using it, and then re-save as mp3 in Audacity again. Works very well.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jun 2014   #7
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by pawz7 View Post
you have encouraged us - and the Audacity forum has manuals on the issue as well, so it all seems achievable. Thank you both. Apparently the tape is of a spoken book ( Pilgrims Progress, by John Gielgood), but I don't suppose that makes a difference - being voice rather than music I mean. Anyway, great help. Thanks
Spoken word has a limited frequency range anyway, so I wouldn't be particularly concerned with the quality loss from re-saving. It should work well. May as well use mono to save space. You can experiment with the bit rate, but 64 mono would probably be all you need.

Audacity has a good built-in noise reducer that works very well to get rid of tape hiss. You just grab a sample of tape hiss from the recording (1/4 second or even less is all you need to grab) and then select the entire song or passage and apply noise reduction to it. Then resave as you normally would.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Jun 2014   #8
carwiz

Windows 7 Pro-x64
 
 

I've also used Audacity to remove "scratch pop" from records. It has a ton of filters available. Some built in and some add-ons. I still haven't learned to use all that I loaded. But I'm not an audiophile either.
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 Not a W7 problem, but a wanted 'how-to' if poss




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