TEAC GF-450K7 CD Recorder with turntable/cassette deck

TEAC GF-450K7 CD Recorder with turntable/cassette deck

Cool Yule Rating: 5 stars

Price: $399.95

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Description: One of my favorite products from a few years ago was the TEAC GF-450, which let you take old vinyl albums and burn them onto a digital audio CD (the system provides a record player and speakers, too, so if you just wanted to listen to the albums you could). After digitizing several old albums, I started yearning for a system that could digitize my old cassette tapes – after all, as a child of the '80s, I had far more cassette tapes than albums.

So I was very pleased to see that this year, TEAC came through and added a cassette deck to the system. With the GF-450K7, you can now digitize old vinyl albums and old cassette tapes onto a CD. The benefits are to retrieve music that lived on those older formats, but haven't been available in digital (audio CD or even through a service like iTunes). For example, over the course of testing I was able to digitize several old jazz albums, a couple of '60s comedy records, some cassette tapes from the '80s, a bunch of Indonesian pop tapes (good luck even figuring out where to buy those on CD), a Richard Simmons exercise cassette tape (my friend was using it so much she wanted a digital version because she was worried the tape was going to break), and an obscure 45 record from the '80s that would never, ever, ever be released digitally. Another colleague borrowed the unit to create a "mix CD" of a bunch of old '80s cassette tapes in preparation for a high school reunion.

Just like the previous unit, the recording process was easy to learn and implement. The only downside – special audio CDs are required (compact disc digital audio, CD-Rs that are meant for computers won't work).

If you have lots of old audio on either vinyl or cassette, this is the system to have if you want to digitize them onto a CD. The best part? After you're done with the conversions, you have a very nice, all-in-one stereo system complete with speakers, a vinyl player, cassette deck, and an AM/FM radio.

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