Best Open Reel Tape

By Jill Parks | Last Updated on Nov 14, 2021

In Hurry? Editor's Choice:

RTM LPR 35 1/4" 1100m, NAB Kern
TOP 1
RTM LPR 35 1/4" 1100m, NAB Kern
TR score rating icon 9.9
TR Score
NEW RTM PYRAL LPR35 1/4" 1800' 549m 7" Plastic Reel Trident Hinged Box RMG/EMTEC Studio Mastering Tape R34511
TOP 2
NEW RTM PYRAL LPR35 1/4" 1800' 549m 7" Plastic Reel Trident Hinged Box RMG/EMTEC Studio Mastering Tape R34511
TR score rating icon 9.8
TR Score
New RTM PYRAL LPR35 1/4" 3608' 1100m 10.5" Metal Reel Nab Hinged Box RMG/EMTEC Studio Mastering Tape R34520
TOP 3
New RTM PYRAL LPR35 1/4" 3608' 1100m 10.5" Metal Reel Nab Hinged Box RMG/EMTEC Studio Mastering Tape R34520
TR score rating icon 9.8
TR Score
How To Choose Open Reel Tape: Methodology

The best Open Reel Tape ranking is based on our detailed evaluation and analysis of over 77,220 consumer satisfaction surveys. We have come up with the top 3 Open Reel Tape you might be interested in and rated them on factors such as Pin, Reel, Tape Length (M) and Tape Width experience.

* Our experienced editors are constantly reviewing the latest news, looking at data analytics in order to recommend only products worth your time and money. As Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases.

A Detailed List of Top 3 Open Reel Tape in 2021

#TOP 1

RTM LPR 35 1/4" 1100m, NAB Kern

Hub
1100
NAB
1/4"

Reviews for RTM (TA Score)

TR score rating icon 9.9

Features

Comes Delivered In A Cardboard Box
Tape Width: 1/4&Quot;
Hub Type: NAB
Length: 1100 M
Comes Delivered In A Cardboard Box
Tape Width: 1/4&Quot;
Hub Type: NAB
Length: 1100 M
#TOP 2

NEW RTM PYRAL LPR35 1/4" 1800' 549m 7" Plastic Reel Trident Hinged Box RMG/EMTEC Studio Mastering Tape R34511

12.6 x 12.6 x 0.87 inches
R34511
13.4 ounces

Reviews for RTM (TA Score)

TR score rating icon 9.8

Features

Smoother Surface
3DB Higher Input/Output
No-Dropout Technology
Coated Back
More Headroom
Smoother Surface
3DB Higher Input/Output
No-Dropout Technology
Coated Back
More Headroom
#TOP 3

New RTM PYRAL LPR35 1/4" 3608' 1100m 10.5" Metal Reel Nab Hinged Box RMG/EMTEC Studio Mastering Tape R34520

R34520
12.6 x 12.6 x 0.87 inches
2.38 pounds

Reviews for RTM (TA Score)

TR score rating icon 9.8

Features

Coated Back
More Headroom
Smoother Surface
3DB Higher Input/Output
No-Dropout Technology
Coated Back
More Headroom
Smoother Surface
3DB Higher Input/Output
No-Dropout Technology

Best Open Reel Tape — FAQ

Do reel-to-reel tapes go bad?

Digitizing Your R2R Tapes
Let's just get the cat out of the bag now reel-to-reel tapes won't last forever. In fact, if you're sitting on a trove of reel-to-reel gold, there's a strong chance they're already on their last leg.

Then, how long do reel-to-reel tapes last?

Most organizations say magnetic tapes, such as reel-to-reel, should last around 20 years. But some people on online forums state they've had tapes lasting more than fifty years due to safe storage.

And, how should reel-to-reel tapes be stored?

Store open reel and cassette tapes with the reels or tape packs vertical. Reels should be supported by the hub. [Tapes should be stored like books on a library shelf on end. They should not be stored laying flat.]

However, can you record on both sides of reel to reel tape?

Similar to half track stereo in that it records only two tracks simultaneously, this format uses a quarter of the tape for each track in order to record on both "sides" of the tape.This layout allows four tracks to be recorded simultaneously, utilizing all of the tape in a single direction.

Also, how do you restore a reel to reel tape?

Baking at 130F is the sweet spot to reverse "sticky shed syndrome." Enlarge / Audio buffs are rediscovering the sound quality of reel-to-reel tapes. Chemists at the Library of Congress are studying why the tapes tend to degrade over time and why baking them can often reverse the damage.

Still, why does reel tape sound so good?

For audio cassettes, the tape is 0.15 inches wide and normally moves around 1 inches per second. And this friends, is what caused the biggest difference in audio quality between the two. By writing the exact same audio signal across more tape, reel-to-reel systems provide a greater fidelity than audio cassette.

Meanwhile, are reel to reel tape decks making a comeback?

While reel-to-reel is making a comeback, it still barely moves the needle. Schneider, who says he has the capacity to produce about 200 machines a year, seeks to sell 20 to 30 players this year and about double that next year.

In addition, how long does analog tape last?

When properly cared for, your audio cassette tapes have a lifespan of 30 years. However, many factors can shorten that lifespan considerably. By this time, you've probably done the math. It has been almost 40 years which means your cassette tapes could be at risk!

Likewise, do people still use reel to reels?

Currently, only two companies consistently produce reel-to-reel audio records, one in Pennsylvania, and one in France, so the pickings are pretty slim if you're looking for something brand new. Some more robust local libraries and archives still possess these recorders, but again, they are fairly few and far between.

Indeed, how do you store analog tape?

Store upright (that's up on its side for all media reel-to-reels, records and cassettes). Play-wind your tapes so the the tape pack is smooth, without any easily-damaged protruding tape layers. Open reel tapes should be stored tails out so they must be rewound before playing.

Our Verdict

With so many Open Reel Tape available, it's difficult to know which one is best. Fortunately, our research team compiled an unbiased list of 26 best Open Reel Tape that will fit every budget. During this study there were over 98914 products across 26 brands. Our verdict: most customers choose Open Reel Tape with an average price tag of $124!

Jill Parks
ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jill Parks is a studio and recording equipment salesperson at Music Store. Jill has been in the industry for over 20 years, and loves what she does. She enjoys interacting with everyone that comes into her store, as well as educating them about all of the different options they have when it comes to gear. She's also a musician herself! Jill plays guitar, bass guitar, mandolin, banjo and fiddle - you name it!