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Our school has a CD player and a cassette deck that are both in need of replacing. They are both about fifteen years old so we've had our money's worth out of them. The question is what to replace them with given that cassettes are obsolete and CDs not far behind. Any suggestions?
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Surely the question is "what do people bring in that they want to hear?"


It is unusual to get a cassette these days but CDs keep coming, to me anyway, and minidiscs turn up from time to time.


So I have CD & Minidisc in most racks, the odd floating cassette deck, a couple of gramophone players turntables & there's a DAT somewere.


The other thing to have is a trailing lead with a 1/8" jack, so that mp3 players can be connected.

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For school use, have a look at Coomber stuff - I'm not their biggest fan but they're tough, do the job, are available in various different configurations of sources and have "theft deterring designs" which makes them less likely to walk than a silver ghettoblaster or whatever.
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In a similar situation I have:


two cd players (which I rarely use)

a cassette player (which has been disconnected for about a year)

a PC with CDex ripper (freeware) which rips to WAV or mp3 for most applications, Audacity to do stuff with the files and a decent soundcard. Files are deleted immediately after use.

a tuner so I can listen to the radio while I'm doing stuff

a whole hotchpotch of leads to connect up just about anything.


I often use Windows Media player for playback because my student technicians are familiar with it.


I've found this does anything I've needed. I had a networked PC with all the security software on it and all the limitations imposed by the IT people. This made it generally slow and unpredictable. It was replaced by a slimmed down basic XP installation so that it remains responsive.


Even school discos these days seem to run from two iPods so the CD players are effectively redundant.

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