Tascam Porta 05 (4-track)

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The Porta 05 was a popular 4-track in the 1980s and 1990s. Nowadays everyone uses computers, so its appeal is mostly retro (or for computer-phobes).

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Tripecac (Travis Emmitt)

I bought my Porta05 in 1993 for around $100.

My friend Jon Friesen bought one first. We used it in IPECAC from 1989-1990. We also used it to record some Anchovies practices and a party.

A couple years later I bought my own. I used it for all my Tripecac albums from 1993 to 1999. I also used it for The Key of G, which was a "live" guitar and vocals album.

It's a nice unit, though not very durable. Mine was partially melted by a lamp a year or so after I bought it; this caused the mic/line slider for track 1 to stop working. In 2005, the motor controls broke but I think I managed to fix them.

Now that I use computers for my recording, I have no need for the 4-track. I still keep it in case I want to do another Key of G-type album or if I want to experiment with adding analog "warmth" to my recordings.