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Old 04-09-2013, 06:20 PM   #1
tukk04
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NMTD! Tascam 244

I am now the owner of an amazingly clean Tascam 244 cassette 4 track, yes cassette.

A bit of backstory: my best friend works for his father's garbage company and has found some cool gear in great shape just thrown away. His previous finds have included a like-new zoom gfx-5 and a luna parlor A/E (which I am trying to convince him to give me) with a slight chip on the one back corner, among other neat music toys.

So yesterday he found saw a big grey thing just sitting on top of a garbage can, and decided to go check it out. It wound up being a Tascam 244, with all the parts intact. He gave it to me because he knows how much I like old analog gear. It turned out to be uber clean, not a speck of dust on the inside and no grit to the pots or faders either. It looks like it was used once or twice, it's as close as NOS as it comes without actually being one.

When I opened up the back the only problems were that the capstan belt was just rubber goo and the control belt had lost it's tension. Luckily only it's only $10 for the replacement belts so it's an easy fix. I still have to check the idle tires and the pinch roller but they can also be replaced for cheap if need be.

The mixer section works great, faders and knobs are smoooooth. Jacks are all clean and functional, even the rca jumpers for the send/receives were on it. The vu meters are in complete working order and as clean as the day it was opened, no discoloration or broken backlights, not even a scratch on the plastic. The preamps and eq work and sound excellent.

Considering the tape deck part needs parts, I'm just going to use the preamps and mixer half with the tape deck subbed for my fostex MR-8 for now. (yay for tascam's awesome signal routing design!)

So, now for the pics! (not mine, he took them after he found it, I forgot to take a pic when I had it open so no gut shots )


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Old 04-09-2013, 07:58 PM   #2
KG6_Steven
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That is so cool! Do they even sell cassette tapes any more? I have a couple of decent tape decks, but the belts are shot. I still have an old Pioneer reel-to-reel in my rack - love the tape sound. You should be able to get the parts for that console and put it back in service.
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Old 04-09-2013, 11:23 PM   #3
tukk04
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KG6_Steven
That is so cool! Do they even sell cassette tapes any more? I have a couple of decent tape decks, but the belts are shot. I still have an old Pioneer reel-to-reel in my rack - love the tape sound. You should be able to get the parts for that console and put it back in service.

I've found the missing belts as a set on ebay for $10.50 with free shipping. I saw on another forum that someone had said their belts lasted for nearly 20 years with heavy use and proper storage (keeping the machine at decent temp, kept from extreme hot or cold).

And yes they still sell new type II's for 2.00 a tape, here's a link: http://www.jr.com/tdk/pe/TDK_SM60/
I plan to buy as many as I have cash to spare a few at a time in case they stop being made, and buy any NOS ones I find for cheap; I'd rather have more than I'll ever need just in case.

The SM60's are specifically designed for music recording too. You can find people selling NOS type II's on ebay too, some for reasonable prices and some for prices the seller must be crazy to think is what someone would be willing to pay.

Also, if your belts are shot and you don't want to chance a third-party belt, belts for tascam/teacs can be bought direct from tascam for almost every model.
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Old 04-10-2013, 06:47 PM   #4
axemanchris
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Brings me back to 1988 with my old Fostex X260....



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Old 04-11-2013, 06:31 PM   #5
KG6_Steven
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The belts and rubber idler wheels on my Realistic and Kenwood tape decks went bad and I haven't been able to find any replacement parts. Fortunately, my reel-to-reel is direct drive, so no belts to worry about. I'd definitely be fixing that Tascam.
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