Preserving archives of
The challenge: the world’s audio archives are in danger.
Libraries, archives and cultural institutions are in a race against time to digitise their precious audio collections before the media of the 20th century becomes unplayable, and their content is lost forever.
Digitising them needs to be entrusted to professionals who understand and respect their value, and who have the experience, skills and equipment to render them into a digital audio file format which will last for generations.
Your organisation’s archives are invaluable.
Leading Australia’s audio industry for 90 years
Studios 301 is at the forefront of archive digitisation in Australia.
As the country’s largest and oldest audio production and mastering facility, we have built our archive digitisation expertise on almost a century of audio experience. The quality of our work speaks for itself – as of mid 2016, we have digitised over 5,000 tapes with an acceptance rate of over 99.8%.
Since 1926, Studios 301 has pioneered the use of most audio formats in Australia including:
- 1610 & 1630 U-Matic Digital Format
- Digital Audio Multitrack
We have a long history of archiving, having maintained archives for EMI and other major labels since the 1950s. We have been digitising archival material on cassettes, reel to reel tapes, and CDs since 2013.
We have successfully delivered a number of major archive digitisation projects for Australia’s largest cultural institutions. Our digitisation capability and experience can help you achieve your archiving objectives, securely preserving your content for the future.
Meeting your archive digitisation needs
As the largest audio recording, production and mastering studio in Australia, we leverage off our experience, the quality and variety of our equipment, and our staff’s dedication to provide high quality, reliable digitisation services.
Archive digitisation presents unique challenges. The audio formats are very delicate, sensitive to temperature and humidity, and need to be handled with the utmost care.
Our digitisation services include:
- Stereo Reel to Reel Tape
- 1/4” ½ track & ¼ track tapes
- 1/2” ½ track. 3.75 to 30ips
- Dolby A & SR and DBX Noise Reduction
- Reel to Reel Multitrack
- 2” 16Trk and 24Trk
- 32 Ch 1” Prodigi
- 24/48 Track ½” DASH
- Compact Disk
- Compact Cassette
- 1 7/8 and 15/16ips
Digital archiving at our audio production and mastering studios
Studios 301 has dedicated archival digitisation suites.
The digitisation master suite is connected to a 20 square metered state-of-the-art air-conditioned, humidity-controlled and secure storage room. In addition, our facility comprises of 12 studios, a large technical workshop, high-end equipment, and a fit-out valued at over $5m.
Our facilities include:
- Digitisation and storage are directly connected minimise handling errors and security issues
- Industrial-grade audio equipment
- On-site technical department
- State-of-the-art acoustics and sophisticated audio wiring
- Restricted key access, CCTV and 24/7 back-to-base alarm monitoring
Common technical challenges when digitising archives
We regularly address the following defects and issues on cassette and reel to reel tapes
- Poor tape pack
- Folding, creasing or ripples along tape pack
- Unreliable splices
- Snapped tape or broken splices
- Flaking edge
- Bacteria contamination
- Extreme bacteria contamination
Combining old and new technology to digitise your media
Our onsite technical department maintains a large collection of rare and obsolete machinery, so that we can continue to play all audio formats used in Australia over the last 50 years. Our technicians custom create parts where necessary, to keep the in operating condition.
Machinery we often use includes:
- Studer A810 and A820 and Ampex ATR100 Reel to Reel tape recorders
- Quadriga 3.5 Workstation Build 74904
- Labec Laboratory ovens
- Nakamichi cassette machines
- Prism convertors
- RME Hammerfall and Avid digital interface cards
- Sequoia, Samplitude, Pro Tools and Wavelab DAWs
- Duntech, Focal and Genelec monitoring
- Audio Precision, HP and Woelke test instruments
- Sony DAT machines