Sunday Funnies – The Return of the Audio Cassette

Vinyl is not the only comeback music format. Check out  this article from the Smithsonian Magazine.

This Missouri Company Still Makes Cassette Tapes, and They Are Flying Off the Factory Floor

Sales of the retro recordings have skyrocketed over the past few years. Since 2017, the number of cassette tapes sold in the U.S. has been increasing by double-digit percentages every year (33 percent from 2019 to 2020). In the UK, sales increased 103 percent in just the first half of 2020, according to the Official Charts Company, which called the cassette “the unlikely comeback kid of music formats.”

Steve Stepp, the president of National Audio Company in Springfield, Missouri—the only producer of magnetic tape for cassettes in the United States, and the largest manufacturer of the format in the world—notes that by and large, the biggest consumer group of audio cassettes right now is those under 35.

“Your ears are analog,” Stepp says. “The world around you is analog. When you hear music and it’s an actual artist, band or orchestra playing, you’re hearing all levels of frequencies at each millisecond. Your ears are built to listen to that. It’s called harmonics. But in a digital recording, there are no harmonics. You’re listening to the dominant frequency at each millisecond.”

These new cassette buyers are part of the digital music generation, Stepp explains. But the problem is that digital music has an inferior sound, because the files are so compressed. Plus, earbuds aren’t the best speakers.

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About the Author:

I am a cybersecurity and IT instructor, cybersecurity analyst, pen-tester, trainer, and speaker. I am an owner of the WyzCo Group Inc. In addition to consulting on security products and services, I also conduct security audits, compliance audits, vulnerability assessments and penetration tests. I also teach Cybersecurity Awareness Training classes. I work as an information technology and cybersecurity instructor for several training and certification organizations. I have worked in corporate, military, government, and workforce development training environments I am a frequent speaker at professional conferences such as the Minnesota Bloggers Conference, Secure360 Security Conference in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, the (ISC)2 World Congress 2016, and the ISSA International Conference 2017, and many local community organizations, including Chambers of Commerce, SCORE, and several school districts. I have been blogging on cybersecurity since 2006 at

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