Re: CD cheap Vinyl expensive.
I used to use a PCM to record on to video tape. I also used a video cassette as a 8-hour music tape, it worked well.
I do remember firing up an old Revox R2R that sounded quite good.
My ultimate "cassette" days consisted of the following decks:
Akai: budget 3-head
Teac R-888x - outstanding for the money
Panasonic hi-fi VHS deck
Harmon Kardon---In 85 $650 was a LOT of money but....
I lusted with all my being after a Namakmichi dragon... $2,000 of cassette tape auto-azimuth correction bliss (NAAC). Even the simpler CR-7 was amazing.
Half-speed masters and heavy vinyl were the rage.