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Recording Tips: Doing your own CD duplication

Thanks to all the many people who responded, many good ideas

One thing that you know about CD - CD duplication. On the CD dubbers that
are available in the audio stores for about $250-$350, they have a no-
Copyright device on the machine so that you can't copy most CDs. On the
higher models that you find on-line, there's apparantly no problem (devices
$400-). We ordered "CD Copy Master 40X 1 Drive CD Duplicator -One to One"
from Octave Systems. Their site is at and the unit
costs $459.

I have a TASCAM 4-track recorder that allows me to record voice
parts. I create a master cassette, then transfer into my computer, burn a
CD, then duplicate.

Another word about duplicators. Check the dubbing speed. You
can get dubbers that copy double speed and some copy 40x speed. If you've
been dubbing
cassettes like me, this is a real time saver. Here's where you're really
making up lost time. Check the sites listed below for a duplicator
for your needs.

Also, there are places that sell CDRs pretty cheaply. We ordered
ours online for .30/CD in spindles of 100. You can only copy on them once.


Tascam CD-RW402 Recorder / Duplicator / Player

Tascam Portastudio. You can get started cheaply (for cassette
only) at $100
to (under) $300 and for CD at $399. The higher the price, the
better the
input controls become; at $100 you can multi-track, but only only
track at a time, at higher prices you can record four tracks
onto four different channels with four microphones. This might not
be an
advantage, as the ambient sound will pickup one voice on another
mic unless
you're pretty sophisticated. (You're also paying for the ability to
manipulate the sound for a more finished mix, which is not your
This always takes more time at the beginning than you hoped.
You are aware that there are services that do this? They often
have already
done lots of the standard literature, and this saves displayResources.phtml
Also, try and Ebay for this stuff. Good look.


I also started doing practice CDs last season, and they are a great
Much easier for a chorister to find a specific track than to scan
through a
cassette tape, and of course the quality is excellent.

I use a mini-disc recorder, and find it works beautifully. I record
piano, either me playing or an accompanist working with me
(when we can find
the time together to do a session). I can move the tracks around to
order I wish, and even edit on a consonant, fixing up a bad take.
I'm still
learning to adjust the recording volume--my first efforts were
distorted. I often chat a bit before the piece, giving verbal
or referring to my soprano cat, who seems to get on quite a few
The kids and the parents have often laughed at me for the silliness
of my
chatter, but I've gotten over the constant mortification--if it
them and they listen, great!

I record the applicable tracks into my computer, playing what I
want from
them (including my verbal instructions) and often record a
performance from
another choir (usually my own choir, or one who has given me
permission to
use theirs), adding it onto the CD after I've sung the voice part. I
thought of just singing the voicepart over another CD, but I may
use that in
the future.
Article on using CD recording equiptment"

  Live Recording Solutions:

Stereo (2-track)

* CDR300 portable CD Recording System
* PSD300 Portable combo CD Recording System
* PMD430 Tape Recorder
* PMD690 Solid State Recorder

Innovative Music Playback Manipulation

* PSD220 CD Player
* PSD230 CD Player
* PSD300 CD Recorder

All-in-One Sound Systems

* PAC750/770
* PAC360

Superscope Technologies Inc.
2640 White Oak Circle, Aurora IL 60504

Here in New Orleans, we use the Berksire Festival Practice tapes
which have
Sop/Ten on left and Alto/Bass on the right. Berkshire has already
with copyright issues. We make a CD master from the tape and
duplicate the
CD on a CD duper. Mine is a Telex Spinwise which makes one
copy at a time.
Its speed is 40 times normal, however, so a CD takes about two to
minutes to copy. I selected this one so I could make an immediate
cd for my recording clients at the concert/recital and keep my cd
master for
post-production work. Also, since it is a duplicator, you can us
data grade
cd blanks which cost about $ 0.40 to $0.60 each in quantity, versus
audio only cd's at around a dollar apiece.

There are CD recorder drives for use in the computer at speeds up
to 40X.
The advantage of using an external duper is that it reduces wear
on the
computer and drive as well as freeing the computer for other tasks.

There are one-to-one CD copiers available from around $400.
Check out

Good luck and email me if you need any additional information.

Larry Phillips
Symphony Chorus of New Orleans

I make practice CDs for my choir every Spring. It really helps, the
the novelty of the CD, and most of them end up practicing more
than my band
kids do! Here is how I do it. It takes lots of time, but probably not
more than the tapes. Since our district will not pay for an
accompanist, a
have an electronic keyboard and a midi sequencer. As I pick
songs for the
year, I program the piano part into the sequencer on tracks 1 and
2. I then
use a separate track for each of the vocal parts. That way, as we
I can bring the various parts in and out as needed. The midi file is
on a sample floppy disk. It can also play on any computer, so
some of my
students will make copies of the floppy disk to have at home.

When Spring comes around (this is when we have harder festival/
style music), I make the CDs. I take the midi files and transfer them
to my
computer. YOu can use "Quicktime" or the Windows Media player
to play them.
I then use a wave recorder (programs you can find for free all
over the
net) and record a wave file for each track (soprano, alto, piano,
etc). You
need a CD burner for the next step. I then use the program
Adaptec Easy CD
Creator to burn each wave file on to a CD-R. The CD-R will play
on almost
any standard CD player. My school recently bought a high speed
CD copier
for me (the will pay for technology, but not a human). If you buy
them in
bulk, you can get CDS for about $.50 each. I have one of my
students burn a
copy for everyone. Again, it is lost of work, but they will use the
more than the tapes. With CDs you can practice tracks over and
over again
with just the press of a button, or skip around as much as you like.
can also hire people to make the mid files for you. If you check the newsgroup, you will find lots of ads this
time of
year. Also, ask your students for help. All you need is a kid that is
with computers, and a great piano playing student and you will be
all set.
Most of my students are better at computers than I am (especially
out here
in Silicon Valley). I hope this helps.

-Paul Lorigan
Horner Junior High
Fremont, CA

Polly Murray
Founder/Artistic Director
ChildrenSong of New Jersey

on January 7, 2007 10:00pm
I have a Tascam CD Recorder. I am recording CD's, however I need equiptment to record a Master CD excluding noise and to get all instruments in sync together. I also need equiptment to get rid of unwanted recorded tracks on a CD.

Thank You.

Lou, Ashland