Publication Date


Document Type


Committee Members

Fred Garber (Committee Member), Andrew Hsu (Other), Marian Kazimierczuk (Advisor), Raymond Siferd (Committee Member), Kefu Xue (Other)

Degree Name

Master of Science in Engineering (MSEgr)


Analog magnetic tape remains a medium of choice for high-fidelity sound recording and reproduction. Some of this fidelity is sacrificed during the tape playback process; an optimized playback preamplifier is therefore critical to the performance of the medium. Existing playback methods integrate the voltage generated across the reproduce head to obtain a signal directly proportional to the remanent magnetic flux of the tape. An alternate playback method proposes the use of a transresistance amplifier to convert flux-proportional reproduce head current directly to voltage. This eliminates the need for voltage integration and minimizes the amount of equalization performed upon playback. Circuit size and complexity are likewise reduced. A practical transresistance playback preamplifier is designed and its performance is evaluated against selected integrating playback preamplifiers. SPICE simulation verifies that the proposed design offers a significant reduction in harmonic distortion, as well as improved transient response, magnitude response, and phase margin.

Page Count


Department or Program

Department of Electrical Engineering

Year Degree Awarded