For many years we have been recording onto a Master (analogue) cassette tape, producing up to 15 copies of this Master Tape at a time, using copying machines. These were then individually checked making sure that they had copied correctly on both sides, using machines known as “Toasters”.
|An Old Favourite - The Toaster!|
They are then put into plastic pochettes, sealed with a Velcro fastening and posted to our listeners.
Unfortunately it is becoming increasingly difficult for us to acquire or mend the copiers and toasters, and for our listeners to acquire or mend cassette players. Some listeners are asking for the News or our other recordings on a CD, mp3 Memory stick, or even obtainable from the Internet. This is all possible but only if we decided to “Go Digital”. Going digital means recording onto a computer instead of a Master Tape, then sending the resultant computer file to whatever output media is wanted – including onto cassette tapes.
|Preparing to Go Digital!|
Therefore, with our move into our new premises -we decided we would be “Going Digital” starting June 2008 (first recording Friday 13th!!).
This has meant buying a lot of new equipment and learning a lot about audio! We are extremely grateful to have received a grant from the Lottery Fund along with various donations from other sources and 2 years of our own fund raising, which has enabled us to buy much of the equipment we need but our costs are on-going.
|The New Mixing desk||The New Mixer and CD Players|
"Going Digital" also means improved quality of the recordings, even if they are output onto cassette tape. Even though we are now recording this "digital" way our listeners are still able to receive and listen to cassette tapes as they have been doing, for as long as we can be supplied with cassette tapes.
We continue to read into microphones the same way as we did before but instead of a Master Tape, it is recorded onto a computer.
|Reading at the Microphones|
Once the recording has been made to the computer file it can be edited to remove some of the stumbles we occasionally make when reading (!), and to put in or take out any pauses. It is then transferred to a Memory Stick which is taken to another computer which controls the copying onto tapes. We also have stand-alone hubs to make multiple copies of CDs and Memory Sticks.
Following each recording session we take the computer file and load it onto this website so that it is available to anyone wishing to listen on-line, or wanting to download it to their own MP3 player or computer. You will find the most recent News, Informant and Insight recordings on the Latest Recordings page.