This week, an amateur posing as a professional:


Not a pro

When my interest in cassettes was reborn in the early days of 2017, I came across a box of these cassettes. A few of these were included as well. Intrigued, I took the plunge for this collection of early 70’s tapes.


There is not a lot to be found about this tape. In fact, I can’t find anything else then this slightly different version with red reels and a different font.
Judging from the ‘Seite’ (meaning ‘side’ in German), we can safely assume that this tape was intended for the German market.


So, why my harsh verdict in the intro? A number of reasons. The first one is that these tapes are deformed straight out of the foil.



Low fi

Secondly, there is something mentioned on the J-card…


…that is missing on the tape. Where’s the hi-fi?


Well, examining the J-card you find out that the hi-fi really has gone missing.


Only 8000Hz? Compare that to the claim of a quality tape. The average human is supposed to be able to hear frequencies up to 15000Hz, so this tape should sound like all the high notes are missing. And that turns out to be correct. When you record on this tape, the result sounds like the treble is turned down to the minimum, and then some more. Really muffled. Still, there’s some honesty on the J-card:


Loosely translated from German:
“PROFI guarantees you the most economical way to record music and enjoy music, without hassles about tape spaghetti or blockages. This cassette is especially suitable for medium quality cassette recorders and can be played on any recorder without having to pay attention to special settings.”


But how do you record on this tape? There’s something very wrong here.


That light shade of brown tells you this is a Type I Ferro tape. And the J-card states it’s a ‘Normal’ tape, so Type I, but…


… that’s a Type II Chrome housing. So the cassette is recognised as a Chrome type by your cassette deck. But the recording quality is so bad, I don’t think it really matters.

Operator, this is an emergency

This makes me curious about what’s on the inside.


Oops. I recently read that tape can attract fungus, and as this is a ‘new’ tape that was still wrapped, the grey stuff here is more likely to be fungus than dust.

What struck me as well:
– the floating foil is completely flat, so doesn’t do much for a smooth roll-up;
– the two pins in the middle do not have a receptacle on the other half of the cassette, so their only use is preventing you from squashing the housing.

And then there is this.



That’s quite unique, I guess. The housing is by no means an even split. I wonder what its function is; it was a hindrance when reassembling the cassette.



So it may be a bad tape, after all these years it still had me