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Audio Restoration Services

Our studio offers 2 options to preserve your vintage recordings to CD. We can

transfer LPs, 78s, 45s, cassettes, and reel-to-reel tapes directly to CD, thereby preserving the content and making it accessible once again. Or before encoding the CD, we can restore the content by first routing it through various processes to significantly reduce noise and enhance the sound for added clarity and fidelity of sound.

Professional restoration tools

We use the very same hardware platform (Digital Audio Workstation, converters, and studio monitors) for our restoration work as we do when recording, mixing and mastering. The audio quality and capabilities of the system are extraordinary. We

knew you would want nothing less.

We love reintroducing clients to their valuable vintage recordings by restoring &

preserving them on CD.

Your Music Is Our Ministry

563-582-0700

Professional Equipment and Professional Service.

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Option 1: Transfer to CD

Many vintage recordings are not only still decent sounding, but the content is often fully recoverable for transfer to CD using our carefully preserved and well-maintained collection of old players. In effect your recording gets a new lease on life, and can reach your family for generations to come. (See Restrictions and Limitations). In most cases this process will provide you with a CD-R disc that has 1 track for each media “side” transferred.

Option 2: Restore to CD

Or we can take things a step further, and restore old recordings for significant noise reduction and sound enhancement (See Restrictions and Limitations). Restoring to CD includes all the features of “Transfer to CD,” plus a host of options, including:

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Memorable projects

One of the joys we have had repeatedly at Master’s Image is seeing the emotional reunion a client experiences upon the restoration of an old recording of a loved one whose voice or song has been unheard for many years. Memorable projects include:

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Restrictions and limitations

Old recordings are individuals. Before delving into copyright legalese, we need to make it clear that the needs presented with old recordings can vary greatly, even between recordings stored on the same shelf in the same house for 40 years. Also — like different people taking the same medications — the way recordings respond to various tools can vary wildly. The restoration process can be lengthy.

 

Uncopyrighted recordings. Where old recordings are not copyrighted, there are no restrictions on the number of copies that can be made. For example, a family recording can not only be transferred or restored to CD once, but replicated for scores of descendants. The low cost of the replication even with custom artwork, in fact, makes the project a surprisingly affordable gift.

 

Copyrighted recordings. Where the original recording is copyrighted, the plot thickens and the same significant limitations crop up. The Fair Use clause of U.S. copyright law allows making one archival copy of a copyrighted recording for the owners own use.

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The restoration tools we use are exclusively high-end plugins and outboard gear. As with our Studio Services, there are still no consumer-grade tools at work here (see Studio Specifications for more info).

We use carefully selected and maintained vintage and custom gear to transfer records and tape for restoration and noise reduction.

  • Noise reduction: significant reduction in broadband noise, hiss, rumble, pops, click, crackle.

  • Reduction in some forms of distortion: this process can be very effective for monaural recordings, and newer tools are making it more effective for stereo recordings as well.

  • Sound enhancement: added richness, warmth, and clarity, making thin scratchy voices easier to understand.

  • Compression: control dynamics, especially useful for speech tracks.

  • Track markers: placed at logical breaks in the program material, allowing you to navigate easily through the CD content.

  • A family’s custom Christmas greeting and well-wishes sent on a 78 to a GI overseas during World War II,

  • A shellac recording of a now deceased husband’s vocal solo with a famous orchestra, inexplicably never unreleased by the label,

  • Home recordings to 1/4” tape parents made in the 1960s of their young children — and of themselves,

  • A 1970s cassette interview of a grandfather by his grandson for a school project concerning memories of World War II.

We have plenty of tissue on hand if needed for the reunion. And if you don’t need it, we might after you leave.

  • You must be the owner of the original recording.

  • You must understand that only one archival copy can exist at a time.

  • You need to understand that whatever you do with the original recording, has to likewise happen to the archival copy: ownership of the original is in effect your permission under copyright law to own the archival copy. If the original is sold or given away, the archival copy goes with it or is destroyed.

You will need to sign a statement to the effect that you understand and intend to comply with these limitations before the transfer or restoration to CD can commence. With the above understandings, we can apply all of our restoration techniques to the copy, and the artwork of the original can be reproduced as well, if you wish it.

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