When it comes to the character of analog tape machines, most of us think of the massive units found in recording studios throughout the ‘60s, ‘70s, and ‘80s. But companies like Studer also produced smaller units, which became the staples in broadcast and location recording.
The Tape Machine 99 re-creates the Revox PR99 mkII, a compact, rack-mount stereo recorder produced by Studer in the 1980s under their Revox brand. Engineered around a hybrid design that takes the best of discrete and op-amp topologies, it offers an un-hyped, elegant sound with an extremely smooth frequency response.
The PR99 has almost no trace of the typical “head bump” effect, reducing the bass boost caused by the gap between repro heads and making the overall response extremely linear. This unit quickly became popular in broadcasting and for on-location professional recording be-cause of its incredibly impressive sonic performance. It also was a reference for audiophiles wanting to dub their beloved LPs on tape, without sacrificing the sound quality to those inade-quate-sounding cassettes.
Using a mix of dynamic convolution and physical modeling, the Tape Machine 99 creates the complex interplay happening in the audio tape recording process, down to the smallest details of this machine.
You won’t believe how much character a clean and smooth analog tape recorder can add until you’ve tried mixing down a track through the PR99mkII.
4 magic formulas: the Tape Machine 99 lets you choose from 4 different tape formulations, each with its own unique harmonic character:
- 250: Modelled after the 3M/Scotch 250 tape
- 456: Modelled after the Ampex 456 tape
- GP9: Modelled after the Quantegy GP9 tape
- 499: Modelled after the Ampex 499 tape
Each Tape Machine plug-in offers controls over tape speed, head selection, record bias, and other common controls, as well as exclusive features like "true stereo" to re-create the subtle differences between left and right on a real analog machine, and IK's powerful new transport modeling, which captures the realistic wow and flutter of each machine.