Re: Audio-capable, computer-interfaced DAT drives? [Summary]

From: Dave Olson (
Date: Sun Nov 15 1992 - 20:23:52 CST

In <> (Mike Abbot) writes:

| Perhaps a glimmer of hope.
| >1. In general, DAT back-up devices cannot handle audio. Technically,
| > the reason is that computer data on a DAT has extra levels of
| > error-correction relative to audio data, and most drives refuse
| > to read tapes without data-type error correction, and will only
| > write tapes with enough error-correction for data. Legally, the
| > reason is that the suppliers of DAT back-up devices do not want to
| > tangle with record companies' lawyers.
| I was recently browsing through the programming manual of a WANGDAT 3200 and
| I noticed that it *is* possible to switch off the data-type error
| correction (Wang call it C3 ECC as opposed to the audio-type ECC, C1 and
| C2.) via a mode setup command to the drive.
| I have not tried it, and I don't have much hope for its success, but anyway
| it might be of interest to you. Perhaps you can contact the WANGDAT
| technical guys and see what they have to say.

Unless this does a lot more than just turn off C3 ECC, it isn't going to
do you much good, speaking from a lot of experience with making the
audio over SCSI work with the Ardat drive.

You could always buy one of our drives and install it on the Sun. After
that, it is just a small ;) amount of effort in writing a driver.

Ardat keeps saying that they plan to release the drive that we buy to
the general public someday (its really just different firmware, the
hardware is stock). So perhaps you should pester your Ardat sales
folks to see if they will sell you a drive with the SGI firmware (and
perhaps more importantly, the documentation on the audio features).

Of course, with Archive (Ardat's parent) being bought by Conner, things
are probably a bit confused down there at the moment...

Let no one tell me that silence gives consent,  |   Dave Olson
because whoever is silent dissents.             |   Silicon Graphics, Inc.
    Maria Isabel Barreno                        |

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