Cassette tapes are the most popular analogue audio format, with over 30 billion cassette tapes produced to date. While many think that cassette tapes are history, they have made a comeback after lying dormant for decades.
Today, they are still a viable option for many. Cassette tapes have re-emerged as the preferred audio format for musicians, bands, and arts looking to connect with their audience.
Cassette tapes are relatively cheap to produce, making them an ideal audio format from a margin perspective.
Their nostalgic touch rekindles memories of the younger, happier years way before CDs were ever invented.
In this article, I will give you an insight into cassette tape duplication and how it works.
Further, I will review the best cassette tape duplication companies in the USA, their package options, pricing, location, among other specifications.
How does cassette tape duplication work?
Cassette tape duplication is simply the process of making duplicate copies from a pre-recorded audio cassette tape known as the master tape. The process of cassette duplication can be done in two ways – real-time duplication and loop bin duplication.
In real-time duplication, the master tape is played at a standard speed into paralleled cassette decks that are loaded with cassettes.
In loop bin duplication, the pre-recorded master tape is loaded into a duplicator bin whereby the recording is done at a very high speed. Both sides of the cassette are recorded simultaneously.
One side of the cassette is recorded in one direction, and the other side is recorded in the opposite direction. The master tape is played at high speed, generating audio signals for both sides, which are sent to an audio bus containing multiple slaves.
The audio bus records onto open-faced cassette tapes in pancake form at the same high speed. After that, the audio data is transferred onto loaders, which have cassette shells known as C-zeros.
So, as promised, here is our list of the best cassette tape duplication companies in the USA.
National Audio company is the largest manufacturer of professional quality cassette tapes in the U.S. Located in Springfield, the company offers expert cassette duplication services to protect the integrity of your recordings.
The company is well equipped to handle cassette duplication projects of any size. They offer special packages for as low as $1.75 for 1000 pieces, $1.75 for 500 pieces, $2.04 for 250 pieces, and $2.50 for 100 pieces.
Their package includes FerroMaster C456 tape, Norelco box, imprinting film and plates, 3-panel full-color J-card, assembly, graphic proof, over-wrapping, and duplication master.
Cassette packaging options include Norelco boxes and soft poly boxes. Due to a large number of orders they receive, National Audio Company has extended their turnaround to five weeks from the date you place your order to when the order is ready to ship.
They offer free plaque with any cassette duplication order of 500 pieces or more and a free tee with any duplication order of 200 pieces or more.
2. A to Z Media
This New York-based company offers a wide range of cassette tape duplication services, including standard imprinting services and deluxe printing.
Some of their imprinting services include silk-screening, pad printing, die-cut paper labels, and 1/color.
Their standard imprinting services include O/U cards, Norelco boxes in select colours, download cards, and J cards (standard & +1-5 panels). The company’s deluxe printing services include slipcases, boxes, and clamshells.
The company offers cassette duplication services starting from 100 units. Their tape bias includes Chrome, Chrome Plus, or Ferric. They offer C-01 to C-90 tape lengths and shells of different colours.
Domestically, A to Z ship via UPS, FedEx, or freight. Internationally, they ship via UPS, DHL, TNT, Danchser, or direct air or sea freight. In terms of turnaround, A to Z media takes upwards of 30 days for complete duplication, imprinting, packaging, and assembly.
A to Z media’s packaging options include standard items such as J/0 Cards along with more deluxe options such as rigid slipcases to hold multiple tapes, folders, booklets, tray cards, and boxes in many configurations.
You can check out their unique packaging styles on the template section on their official website.
Their finishing options include embossing, debossing, die-cutting, foil stamping, hand-numbering, recycled stock, spot UV, screenprinting, and many more. They allow for a minimum order of 100 units.
This company offers real-time and high-speed cassette tape duplication services in all formats.
The company is located in Tallahassee, FL, and uses high-quality cassettes to guarantee top quality results.
You can order a minimum of 25 copies, and all orders should be in multiples of 25. For imprinting services, they have a minimum order of 50 copies.
With your cassette tapes, their pricing starts from $35 for 50 copies and $65 for 100 copies.
Pricing is different when they provide the cassette tapes, whereby they’ll charge $90 for 50 copies and $150 for 100 copies.
If you want cases included, you’ll pay $100 for 50 copies and $170 for 100 copies. They also have the option for colour sided inserts that come at an additional charge. The company also offers marble painted tapes in a wide range of colours at $1.75 per tape.
Audio duplicating service (ADS) is located in Fort Lauderdale, FL, and offers cassette duplication services using specialized bin loop cassette tape duplicators.
ADS has been in business since 1972, serving duplicating needs around the country.
There isn’t a minimum order; duplicate 10 or 50, 000 pieces. They offer a wide range of packaging options, including J-cards, Norelco cases, and shrink wraps.
They also offer printed paper labels and free shipping.
Audio Duplicating Service offers a classic audio cassette package, which includes bin-loop master, chrome tape duplication (C-45), full-color J-card, on shell apex imprinting, clear Norelco case, and shrink-wrapping.
In terms of pricing, they offer 50 pieces for $175, 100 pieces for $250, 200 pieces for $395, and 500 pieces for $599. This pricing applies to duplicated cases only.
This cassette duplication company is located in the heart of Music City (Nashville, TN).
The company’s turnaround time will vary from order to order depending on the master type, quantity, and duplication needs.
Generally, their turnaround time for cassette duplication ranges from one day to three weeks. Their pricing is based on the quantity and length of the audio data. They have quite a broad pricing criteria.
For a quantity of 250 pieces and above, you’ll pay $0.95 for pieces less than 20 minutes, $ 1.10 for 20-40 minutes, $1.20 for 41-60 minutes, and $1.30 for pieces longer than 60 minutes.
Ranges from 100 -249 pieces, they charge $1.20 for pieces less than 20 minutes, $1.35 for 20-40 minutes, $1.45 for 41-60 minutes, and $1.55 for pieces longer than 60 minutes.
Quantity ranging from 25 to 99 pieces, their pricing is $1.70 for pieces less than 20 minutes, $1.85 for 20-40 minutes, $2.05 for 41-60 minutes, and $2.25 for pieces longer than 60 minutes.
Finally, for a quantity of 1-24 cassettes, they charge $2.10 for pieces less than 20 minutes, $2.25 for 20-40 minutes, $2.45 for 41-60 minutes, and $2.65 for pieces longer than 60 minutes.
Their prices are lower if you supply your cassettes. Their packaging options include Norelco boxes, poly Norelco boxes, shrink wrap, and J-card.
Besides, they accept payment in cash, check, money order, bank wire, MasterCard, Visa, American Express, or Discover. For orders of $250 or more, they require a deposit of one-half the subtotal with the balance due prior to pick-up or shipment.
This Brooklyn-based company can duplicate any length of cassette tapes starting from a quantity of 50 or more. They are best known for their professionally duplicated super ferric cassette tapes.
Service options offered by Cryptic Carousel include:
- Full-color J-cards, O-cards, or U-cards.
- Direct shell imprinting
- Full-colour laser printed shell labels
- Custom shell options
- Digital download cards and shrink wrap.
The company uses companies such as UPS, Express Mail, and FedEx for shipping.
E-K Media Inc. has offered cassette tape duplication services for more than 30 years now.
Located in Sudbury, MA, this company offers a one-day turnaround for quantities of 500 or less and a turnaround of 5 to 10 days for large quantities of more than 500 pieces. E-K Media Inc. offers custom printed cassette tapes along with laser printed wraps, inserts, and tray cards.
Located in Canoga Park, CA, this company has been in the cassette tape duplication business for over 70 years.
The company has a minimum order of 100 pieces and offers unique packaging options, including Norelco boxes and printed J-cards.
These are some of the best cassette duplication companies in the USA.
As to which is the best, it will depend on personal needs, budget, preferred packaging material, and other specifications.
In terms of pricing, National Audio Company, Audio Geography Studios, and We Make Tapes & Discs offer quite favourable prices.
If you’re looking for fast turnaround, E-K Media Inc. is absolutely the best choice.
I hope you enjoyed this little review and its saved you some time having them all in one location, happy cassette hunting and if you are a musician, band or artist do check out what we do here at Music Gateway, we don’t bite, honest!