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If the Concordia collection is an exception to this rule it is in part by chance. Although it was stored in a locale offering “reasonable” conditions — not at all intended for archiving purposes — the collection turned out to be in a surprisingly excellent state when the first transfers were made, starting in 2007. More than half of the media were without any tangible signs of deterioration, and only a handful of tapes were determined to be unusable without recourse to special “baking” procedures, treatments which are not available to the project at this time. It was time to begin to transfer the works.

It should be noted that there are inherent limitations to any form of audio restoration. For example, it is impossible to recreate the general context in which listeners around the year 1910 would have appreciated 78 rpm discs. The strictly acoustic reproduction on the one hand, and the contemporary listening standards of the public on the other, are parameters which are today impossible to reconstruct with any exactitude. This is one of the reasons we have opted for a “literal” digitization of the works in the collection. That is to say, using the best playback equipment and analog-digital converters available today, the latter operating at a very high sampling resolution.

The results are presented “as-is,” however with noise removed, as it is clear that this was always somewhat masked because of the limits of the equipment used. This “editorial” decision allowed for a transparency which sometimes helped restitute a level of clarity in the densest textures which would have been impossible with the technologies available at the time. It may have also involuntarily revealed the sonic limits of works with a lesser density.

Produced with the financial participation of the Department of Canadian Heritage

Patrimoine canadien      Gouvernement du Canada


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Projet d’archivage Concordia (PAC) Communauté électroacoustique canadienne / Canadian Electroacoustic Community