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Re: Multitrack recording question

"wolfereeno" <wolfereeno@hotmail.com> asked:

> I have a bunch of 4 track cassette tapes that I've been moving over to 
> computer.  I've got a Delta1010 card and have been recording them using
> number of tools (Vegas, Nuendo, Sonar...) so I end up with 4 very large
> min) mono wav files per tape.  The files contain multiple songs but also 
> lot of dead space as well as things I don't want to keep.
> My question has to with finding a convenient way to edit down the wav
> and separate the songs I want to keep into separate projects.  I haven't
> been able to find a good way to do it yet.  I'd like to simply copy 4
> simultaneously to 4 new tracks to be saved as 4 shorter wav files.
> Those audio workstations I've used copy the tracks no problem, but they
> don't actually modify (or even copy) the underlying wav files, so
> projects end up sharing the same base wavs.  This causes a lot of
> I'd rather work with each project having it's own shortened wav files and
> delete the originals.  If I just use soundforge, I have to do 1 track at 
> time and then it becomes a lot of work to keep them properly aligned.
> I could make a copy of the 4 original tracks for each sub project and 
> use something like Vegas' clean up process which it trims the parts of 
> wavs that fall outside of the project's 'scope'.  But that would take a
> of time and space.
> Ideally I'd like to just breeze through with something like Sound Forge,
> cutting and pasting 4 tracks at a time and save the results to different
> directories.
> Any tools excel at this kind of thing?    I've taken some time off from
> working on this stuff.  I hope I'm not being dense and the answer's
> me in the face.

It would seem that the time is ripe for the former CoolEdit Pro and its ilk
to be able to handle multi-tracking sound cards, so that one could avoid 
only paying up the wazoo for a 'sound workstation', but also keep 4-track 
 4-track insofar as one's mix is concerned.  Given the perishability of
tape, it's just a matter of time before your library of unfinished works on
4-track cassettes is nearly unusable for your purposes... and you don't 
to have to settle for 2-track mixdowns as your only archive of said
material, either.  Rock n' Hard Place.  So one has to save two tracks at a
time, and then work as one will..

You pros on the list will probably chuckle darkly and knowingly at the

While trying to preserve a 4-track cassette's contents without a working
4-track deck some years ago, I discovered one of the side effects of
cassette use involving spindle speed.  I recorded, from a regular 2-track
deck, each side: one of course reversed in playback.  The piece-in-question
was recorded on the evening of the death of the immortal Friz Freleng and
called "Friz' Lament", and because it had percussion at various points, it
was impossible to sync or even pretend it did.

The tape and others remain in a dust-proof box, in a cool storage facility.

Sorry about the off-topic trail-off, though.  Suffice it to say that the
four-in, four-out sound card is something I've lusted after for some time,
but at least one has the option of pasting separate captures of
two-out-of-the-four tracks...

Steve Goodman
* EarthLight Productions
* http://www.earthlight.net