Under Design will be closed for vacation from August 9th-17th. Business will resume Monday the 18th. Expect email delays.

Our Customers Love Our Work!

October 25, 2013 October 1, 2013 May 6, 2013 March 15, 2013 September 8, 2012 June 15, 2012
Click here to see our glowing feedback postcards from some of our satisfied customers!

Included With Every Order


Our Process

Every Reel-to-Reel Conversion begins with a thorough tape inspection for damage, mold and decay, before it's played back on our broadcast-quality Reel-to-Reel decks. The audio signal is digitized using our professional grade audio card before our audio engineers do some light post-processing on the resulting audio. We remove the inherent tape hiss, trim the tracks, amplify and even the levels before re-mastering it back onto redbook-audio CD's. We use top-rated CD media to ensure a high-caliber and highly-compatible product. Each CD gets marked with simple, easy-to-read identification, then stored in a paper sleeve.


Media Types

Reel-to-reel tape (or Open Reel Tape) came in many shapes and sizes, the most common consumer size that we accept is a quarter inches in width (1/4 inch tape). As tapes came in different thicknesses and substrates (two are pictured), and are often put on different size reels (ranging from 3" to 10" and larger), depending on runtime, because they can be recorded at different speeds, not every reel-to-reel tape yields the same amount of audio. We charge a flat rate per reel, no matter how much audio (and as many audio CD's are required) to complete the audio transfer.


Archivists Welcome!

If you have a massive digital conversion or archiving project for your university, corporation, government agency or just intricate order that requires a person, contact us here at Under Design and we'll be glad to help you out! We can handle all sorts of custom orders, and offer bulk discounts that fit your budget. We love to provide local, personal service, so if you are in the center city Philadelphia, PA area, we're open weekdays from noon until 7pm for dropping off your digital conversion orders.

[image: Under Design Logo]

Conversion Experience

Under Design was founded in 1992, working in many media forms integrating design into real-world applications. We have over 20 years of experience in digital recording, multi-media development, audio compression and digital encoding. We use top-of-the-line professionally maintained equipment to ensure quality transfers at an affordable price. You can also take a look at what some of our satisfied customers are saying about their new digital conversions!

Reel-to-Reel Sizes and Runtimes

Depending on how the initial Reel tape was recorded (stereo/mono, single/double sided), the below runtimes may be doubled or quadrupled.

Tape Speed in Inches Per Second
Reel Size Tape Length 1 7/8 IPS 3 3/4 IPS 7 1/2 IPS 15 IPS
3" 150 ft. 16 mins 8 mins 4 mins 2 mins
4" 300 ft. 32 mins 16 mins 8 mins 4 mins
5" 600 ft. 1 hr 4 mins 32 mins 16 mins 8 mins
6" 900 ft. 1 hr 36 mins 48 mins 24 mins 12 mins
7" 1200 ft. 2 hr 8 mins 1 hr 4 mins 32 mins 16 mins
Under Design cannot accept Reels larger than 7"

The below information is published for reference as to approximate runtimes.

8" 1800 ft. 3 hr 12 mins 1 hr 36 mins 48 mins 24 mins
10 1/2" 2400 ft. 4 hr 16 mins 2 hr 8 mins 1 hr 4 mins 32 mins
10 1/2" 3600 ft. 6 hr 24 mins 3 hr 12 mins 1 hr 36 mins 48 mins

This transfer will require 4+ CD's

This transfer will require 3 CD's

This transfer will require 2 CD's


Notes About Transfers

If your audio reel tape comes apart or snaps in two during playback, we'll fix the first break for free. Additional breaks will be invoiced to the customer at $2 per edit. By submitting your Reel-to-Reel for digital conversion to Under Design, you acknowledge that you are aware of these surcharges, and that these surcharges may exceed conversion costs.

If your polyester Reel-to-Reel tape requires Tape Baking, due to age or poor storage conditions, please DO NOT use our transfer service. Improperly stored Reel-to-reel tapes tend to bind-up in storage, allowing the tape to stick to itself. They will also flake off the magnetic substrate (shedding) during playback, making for a noticeable loss in audio quality. You get only one chance to capture the best audio off these old tapes, and unfortunately, we are not audio tape restoration experts! You can expect that detail-oriented audio transfer services including baking will cost four times as much as our bargain rates.

Now including Shipment Tracking

US Postman holding oversize Tracking Sticker We're already big fans of the United States Postal Service and it's Media Mail rate. They've recently upgraded their internal computer systems to support Package Tracking, and now we include it as a standard feature with all of our Return Shipping. After we've shipped your job back to you, we'll email you a tracking number and instructions on how to monitor it's commute back to your home.

Start your Reel-to-Reel to CD Order now!

Order Online and Pay With Credit Card


Reel-to-Reel to CD

Save your long-playing reel-to-reel memories onto certified CD media sure to last 20+ years! You are responsible for packing and shipping your Reel-to-Reels to us, we suggest using USPS Media Mail rate, as it's appropriate and inexpensive. We'll send you a reminder email to send your Reel-to-Reels once we receive your order. After you checkout with PayPal, please review our detailed shipping instructions for packing your media. All orders should receive an email notification from PayPal and Under Design within 24 hours.

Reel-to-Reel to CD Audio Conversion
CD of recorded digital audio from customer-submitted Reel-to-Reel 1/4 inch audio tape, up to 7" in diameter, on a plain white CD-R with black printing delivered in a White Paper Sleeve with our free 30-day replacement guarantee.
MP3 Copy to Download Immediately!
We'll create MP3 files of your Reel-to-Reel and make them available to you to download even before you get your conversion back in the mail, for instant gratification! These files will be zipped in an archive, and a download link will be sent to your email.
Return Shipping & Handling
USPS Media Mail Flat Rate Return shipping (with Tracking) to any US Destination for the first Reel-to-Reel. Additional Reel-to-Reel's ordered at the same time ship for only 50 more per Reel-to-Reel.
Reel-to-Reel to CD Transfers Needed

Order by U.S. Mail and Pay with Check

[image: Thumbnail of our new Downloadable Order Form]

Download Order Form

Download and print our PDF order form, which has all of our available digital conversion services (and simple flat-rate pricing) in one simple-to-use form. You can calculate return shipping costs and bulk discounts for a simple predictable estimate for your archiving project. Use our order form for:

  • Multiple media type orders (Reel-to-Reel Tapes along with LP's, VHS, etc.)
  • No Credit Card or you prefer to pay by Check or Money Order

Simply pack our completed order form along with your media and ship it to us using the U.S. Postal Service's Media Mail rate, for the lowest shipping rates! We'll notify you by email once it arrives.