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A mechanism used in 1980s-era synthesizers to provide for external storage of patch data, prior to the availability of low-cost disk drives (it was also common on personal computers of the era).To use the interface, the user connected the synth’s cassette interface to an ordinary audio cassette deck. To store patches, the user put the cassette deck into record and then pressed a “SAVE” button on the synth; the synth then encoded the patch data into an encoded audio signal (using techniques similar to a computer modem) and sent it to the cassette deck to be recorded.To reload the patches, the user pressed the “LOAD” button on the synth and then set the cassette deck to play; the synth received the audio signal and decoded the patch data from it. (Some units also had a “VERIFY” function that checked the tape after a save by reading back the saved data and comparing it to the data in memory.) Cassette interfaces were always slow and not very reliable, and they disappeared as soon as reasonably priced floppy disk drives became available, around 1987. (Nowdays, the floppy drive is also obsolete, and most synths transfer patch data to/from external storage via MIDI or USB interfaces.)

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