audiotape playback perfected


What if you had an analog master tape of an important recording and wanted to play it back in the highest possible fidelity?


What equipment would you choose?


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Audio tape machines optimized for playback are called reproducers.

A long popular misconception is that a master tape should be played back on the same model studio recorder that originally made it. Yet experts know that this will likely only add another layer of distortion. The far better solution for obtaining optimum playback is to use a highest-quality reproducer.

Adolph Thal Audio Engineering (ATAE) was founded to design and manufacture reproducers and related hardware for state-of-the-art analog audio tape playback. Reflecting a solid understanding of the physics underlying analog magnetic recording and playback, our products enable valuable master tapes to be heard in the highest possible fidelity.

Our Model One and Model Two ultra-low-flutter reproducers are built from the famed Studer A820 and A80 precision guidance constant tension tape transports, which are exactingly re-manufactured by us. We are the original developer of the single-head-read-only (SHRO) exceedingly low scrape flutter headblock. We are located in northern California.

ATAE reproducers are sold under a comprehensive five-year warranty.

Reproducer system pricing starts at $72,000.


A systems approach.

Preserving the amplitude versus time relationship in any audio recording is crucial. Everything in the chain matters with analog tape playback, but the time-base accuracy is solely dependent on the tape transport and headblock. ATAE ultra-low-flutter precision guidance transports with SHRO headblocks deliver laboratory grade speed stability that you can hear.

Complementing ATAE's tape transports, the playback electronics must be closely matched to the individual play head installed in the reproducer's headblock and must accurately align to the standard playback equalization curves.

Each of our five different models of tape playback electronics deliver industry leading performance and sound quality.



For over 30 years our mission has been to help preserve the treasure from the golden age of music recording, half a century's worth of original analog master tapes stored in record company archives. Few people know how good legacy master tapes can actually sound. We hope the state-of-the-art tape playback hardware we're building changes that.

ATAE has been an email contact only company since the year 2000. To reach us, kindly submit this form and we'll get back to you promptly. If you prefer a phone conversation, just let us know.


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