I was actually thinking of re-wiring the house in gold Romex, which is not magnetic but a heckuva conductor. Ditto the wall-plate cover screws, since the Captain is being so parsimonious with his degausser and JW has revealed himself to be a capitalist.
With gold Romex, not only should there be an audible improvement in the hi-fi, the dishwasher and clothes dryer may run quieter, too. I may need to buy a mine.
Seriously, salvation may be at hand. Whilst probing the basement yesterday for a suitable instrument to pull a stop'n'rob, beneath the dust and cobwebs I beheld a Nakamichi RX-505. I blew the larger particles of crud off of it, hauled it upstairs and patched it into the system. Lo and behold, the playback worked; I've no tapes upon which to test the record function: The septuagenarian Bing Crosby Christmas cassette had the tabs removed. But it played, and it played, and it played.
Then, as if by a sign from Above, I stumbled across a Chicago Tribune (http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/ct-dead-media-comeback-ae-0131-20160128-story.html) article on the renaissance of the cassette tape medium. Turns out I was incorrect in an earlier post. There IS a company in the U.S., in Springfield MO, National Audio Co. Inc., (http://nationalaudiocompany.com/default.aspx) that manufactures new cassette tapes in Type I and II biases. They use newly-minted BASF mastering tape so I've ordered a box of 10 90-minute Type II for $47.80 plus UPS' infernal shipping fees. (They are also an ATR R2R tape dealer).
And now, onto the Nakamichi. The heds will no doubt need lapping, which I am sure can be accomplished with a dremel and 80-grit. And all those relays, belts, plastic gears, solenoids, that will need loving attention and I might as well upgrade all those little tiny capacitors. Sorta like taking a pocket-watch apart and putting it back together.
This should carry me through the start of baseball's Grapefruit League and perhaps into the World Series.
In the DAC department, I picked up an Emotiva (highly recommended.) Am running Tidal and the CD player through it with highly satisfactory results.
As to your many other salutary suggestions, my thanks! Perhaps some speaker stands are in order, just for canting purposes if nothing else. Suggestions? The Tylers came with spikes but that's a bit rough on the hard-wood.
Bummer to have missed out on the RS-1500 R2R deck, last-minute snipe but so it goes. The tape-flipper on the Nak will be an adequate cat distraction.
Last edited by deepee99 on Mon Feb 22, 2016 3:31 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : fixing URL)