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Tape Echo Questions

gendefect

Inspired
The v4.0 tape echo is quite excellent. I'm enjoying it immensly already! Granted, I'm too young (and poor) to have ever owned a real tape echo, so I'm only basing it on some of my favorite tape echo digital recreations (namely the El Capistan and the Skreddy Echo). But I think this is likely exactly what I've been looking for in an Axe delay.

I do have a couple questions though. I'm guessing a number of them will be answered once the new manual comes out, but in the meantime, I figured I'd throw them out here, since probably other folks have similar questions (or could add any other ones they might have to this thread).

1) The first thing I noticed was how much I love what adjusting the motor speed does to the modulation of the echo. However, when you adjust the motor speed, it no longer syncs to the tapped tempo. Is there a way to have the modulated motor speed, but still be able to get the echo to sync to your tapped tempo?

2) What does the 'Head 2 Ratio' do? I played around with it a little bit, but couldn't really hear what it was doing. What kinds of sounds can be achieved by adjusting it?

3) What about the 'Start Frequency' and 'Stop Frequency'? What is that adjusting? How does it affect the sound?

That's all I've got for now!
 

javajunkie

Moderator
Moderator
As I said in another post, the modulation parameters built into the delay affect the motor speed when the config is set to tape. They can be temp sync'd . Additionally the lfos in the controllers section can be tempo sync'd

The easiest thing is just to use the lfos in the effect and set them to a tempo.

Head ratio is explained in the release notes. It can achieve a stereo type effect to a bouncing left/right delay. Or just 2 delays with a relationship to each other.

Start stop freq?
you mean in the whammy?
 

gendefect

Inspired
Thanks Sean, but I'm not sure I totally follow. So you're saying the modulation that I get from decreasing the motor speed I can get from adjusting the LFO rates in the "Mod 1" and "Mod 2" sections (of Axe Edit)? If so, the difference there is that you pick the specific rate and depth, etc, whereas with the motor speed, you it sort of does that for you--I just have to adjust that one parameter. Or am I missing something?

And in Axe Edit, in the "Time/FB" section, on the bottom right, there are knobs for "Start Freq" and "Stop Freq". I was wondering what those did.
 

holdenhinkle

Inspired
I'm finding this kind of confusing too. The relationships between different settings in the Time/FB block (like motor speed, time, ratio) and the Mod 1 and 2 blocks. I like what I hear, but I'm not sure how to control it.

Perhaps someone could post a few different files with notes?

Thanks!
 

FractalAudio

Administrator
Fractal Audio Systems
Moderator
The algorithm is a single tape with one record head and two playback heads. The signal from each head can be fed back (Feedback) and panned and leveled.

Head 1 Time sets the delay time of head #1 when the Motor Speed is 1.0. This is analogous to the distance between the record head and the playback head in a tape deck. As you increase the time you move the heads apart and vice-versa. Whatever the time is set to is the delay time when the Motor Speed is 1.0.

As you increase the Motor Speed the tape moves faster so the delay time decreases and vice-versa. The relative position of the heads do not change.

Ratio sets the delay time of head #2 as a percentage of head #1. If you set Ratio to 50% then the delay time of head #2 will be half that of head #1. This is analogous to positioning head #2 exactly half the distance as head #1 from the record head.

In brief: Delay Time = distance between heads, Motor Speed = tape speed.

The LFOs modulate the motor speed. Modulating the motor speed (which changes the tape speed) is a very different effect than modulating the delay time. You can hear the difference between by varying the Motor Speed manually and the Head 1 Time manually.

In a typical tape deck the tape speed is not constant. In the days of tape recorders much effort was expended on trying to keep the tape speed as constant as possible. This included periodic maintenance. However, when applied as a delay effect, the variation in tape speed could create a desirable modulation. Tape Echos, in particular, were built to cost points and suffered from considerable tape speed fluctuation.

The two primary components of speed variation were termed "wow" and "flutter". Wow arises due to low-frequency variations in the tape speed. This is typically due to variation in the speed of the motor itself and/or eccentricity of the pulleys. Flutter is a high-frequency modulation and arises due to eccentricity of the capstan and pinch roller.
 

javajunkie

Moderator
Moderator
Thanks Sean, but I'm not sure I totally follow. So you're saying the modulation that I get from decreasing the motor speed I can get from adjusting the LFO rates in the "Mod 1" and "Mod 2" sections (of Axe Edit)? If so, the difference there is that you pick the specific rate and depth, etc, whereas with the motor speed, you it sort of does that for you--I just have to adjust that one parameter. Or am I missing something?

And in Axe Edit, in the "Time/FB" section, on the bottom right, there are knobs for "Start Freq" and "Stop Freq". I was wondering what those did.
Start and stop freq must be a bug with axe-edit - it should have those AFAIK.

Cliff seems to explain everything else.
 
I just downloaded 4.01 update and installed. Where is the tape echo effect located on the Axe II? Is it under the delay blocks? I did not see it, please help a blind man find his echo!
 

VegaBaby

Fractal Fanatic
I just downloaded 4.01 update and installed. Where is the tape echo effect located on the Axe II? Is it under the delay blocks? I did not see it, please help a blind man find his echo!
Delay block, dial CONFIG all the way up (clockwise). there you should find it.
 

jon

Fractal Fanatic
The algorithm is a single tape with one record head and two playback heads. The signal from each head can be fed back (Feedback) and panned and leveled.

Head 1 Time sets the delay time of head #1 when the Motor Speed is 1.0. This is analogous to the distance between the record head and the playback head in a tape deck. As you increase the time you move the heads apart and vice-versa. Whatever the time is set to is the delay time when the Motor Speed is 1.0.

As you increase the Motor Speed the tape moves faster so the delay time decreases and vice-versa. The relative position of the heads do not change.

Ratio sets the delay time of head #2 as a percentage of head #1. If you set Ratio to 50% then the delay time of head #2 will be half that of head #1. This is analogous to positioning head #2 exactly half the distance as head #1 from the record head.

In brief: Delay Time = distance between heads, Motor Speed = tape speed.

The LFOs modulate the motor speed. Modulating the motor speed (which changes the tape speed) is a very different effect than modulating the delay time. You can hear the difference between by varying the Motor Speed manually and the Head 1 Time manually.

In a typical tape deck the tape speed is not constant. In the days of tape recorders much effort was expended on trying to keep the tape speed as constant as possible. This included periodic maintenance. However, when applied as a delay effect, the variation in tape speed could create a desirable modulation. Tape Echos, in particular, were built to cost points and suffered from considerable tape speed fluctuation.

The two primary components of speed variation were termed "wow" and "flutter". Wow arises due to low-frequency variations in the tape speed. This is typically due to variation in the speed of the motor itself and/or eccentricity of the pulleys. Flutter is a high-frequency modulation and arises due to eccentricity of the capstan and pinch roller.
Thanks for that, that was VERY clear and VERY informative.

Yek can you wiki it?
 

roodboy

Inspired
The algorithm is a single tape with one record head and two playback heads. The signal from each head can be fed back (Feedback) and panned and leveled.

Head 1 Time sets the delay time of head #1 when the Motor Speed is 1.0. This is analogous to the distance between the record head and the playback head in a tape deck. As you increase the time you move the heads apart and vice-versa. Whatever the time is set to is the delay time when the Motor Speed is 1.0.

As you increase the Motor Speed the tape moves faster so the delay time decreases and vice-versa. The relative position of the heads do not change.

Ratio sets the delay time of head #2 as a percentage of head #1. If you set Ratio to 50% then the delay time of head #2 will be half that of head #1. This is analogous to positioning head #2 exactly half the distance as head #1 from the record head.

In brief: Delay Time = distance between heads, Motor Speed = tape speed.

The LFOs modulate the motor speed. Modulating the motor speed (which changes the tape speed) is a very different effect than modulating the delay time. You can hear the difference between by varying the Motor Speed manually and the Head 1 Time manually.

In a typical tape deck the tape speed is not constant. In the days of tape recorders much effort was expended on trying to keep the tape speed as constant as possible. This included periodic maintenance. However, when applied as a delay effect, the variation in tape speed could create a desirable modulation. Tape Echos, in particular, were built to cost points and suffered from considerable tape speed fluctuation.

The two primary components of speed variation were termed "wow" and "flutter". Wow arises due to low-frequency variations in the tape speed. This is typically due to variation in the speed of the motor itself and/or eccentricity of the pulleys. Flutter is a high-frequency modulation and arises due to eccentricity of the capstan and pinch roller.
I have read this several times and don't get it.
Can someone explain which knobs do wow & flutter?
 

javajunkie

Moderator
Moderator
I have read this several times and don't get it.
Can someone explain which knobs do wow & flutter?
You have to lfos under the mod menu.
You can set one to do wow (slow modulation speed), and flutter with the other (faster modulation).
 

roodboy

Inspired
You have to lfos under the mod menu.
You can set one to do wow (slow modulation speed), and flutter with the other (faster modulation).
Thanks for the reply.
I have never really grasped the LFO thing. I will mess around with it and see what I come up with.
 
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