Digitizing ancient cassette data (was Re: COSMAC VIP documentation)

From: Ethan Dicks <erd_6502_at_yahoo.com>
Date: Tue Aug 20 21:56:00 2002

--- Tony Duell <ard_at_p850ug1.demon.co.uk> wrote:
> > I may have found the tape... I would play with it tonight, but the felt
> pad has fallen off the metal leaf spring behind the tape, and the first
> few inches got wrinkled in my player when I tried to listen to it.
> If you could repair the felt pad, would you be able to make any use of
> the data on the tape?

I am not certain if the VIP uses a header or not, but given how simple
the monitor is, and the fact that unlike, say, the PET, there is no
file name (and no redundant copy), I would expect that the first file
on the tape is completely hosed.

> I have repaired cassette pressure pads in the past. If you can find
> another cassette of the same brand with a good pad then you can often
> open up the cassette housing (all decent compact cassettes are assembled
> with screws!) and swap over the leaf spring/pad assembly.

If it had screws, I'd have done that already. I used to go through a lot
of tapes and I was in grade school/high-school when I was using them,
so many of my tapes are high quality, but most are not. I did use the
expensive Memorex screw-type for really important stuff. I also tended
to not write just to the front of the tape (and wear it out).

With this exception of this one VIP tape and a few DEC TA60s, all of
my cassettes are Commodore. I'd estimate 3% C-64, 1% VIC-20, and the
rest, 40-col BASIC 2 PET. I've already slurped up all the ones that
are not in "Rabbit" format. As soon as I decide how to restore my
original 32K PET (intermittent keyboard problems - it's already the
second PCB. I have at least one NOS keyboard sans cable; the question
is do I move the cable or build a new one from scratch), I will be
slurping up the handful of Rabbit tapes. I have the Rabbit software
in ROM and on standard C= cassette.

> > Worst case, I'll have to type stuff in, then "save" through a PeeCee
> > sound card. I am a little concerned about mains noise, so I'm
> Don't you still have a cassette (or other tape) recorder? Can't you still
> get blank tapes? I would want to save it in as many ways possible!

I wasn't figuring on relying on stretchable analog technology. I _could_
cut a new tape, but I hadn't planned on it.


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Received on Tue Aug 20 2002 - 21:56:00 BST

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