Spectrum Tape Preservation

Please note this content is from the original WoS site, and may no longer be relevant. If you have any queries, please contact us.

A joint effort of Martijn van der Heide, Steve Brown, Andy Barker, Tony Barnett and Juan Pablo López-Grao.

The STP projects’ aim is to obtain perfect TZXs of each and every release of each and every Spectrum game ever released (if they aren’t already available on The TZX VaultSPA2 or WoS).

Any help in resolving these is highly appreciated!

Category Missing By country
Games 1532
Text Adventures 357
Educational 95
Utilities 595
Miscellaneous 22
Compilations 49
TOTAL (Zip) 2650

We would like them in TZX format, taken from the original tape (PLEASE DON’T BEAUTIFY THEM) to make them authentic,
or a complete *backup/copy* from an original tape with the loading scheme intact!

Instructions and Cover scans are appreciated if they can be supplied.

Uploads can be done using either HTTP or FTP. Please see this page for more info.

Please make sure to also check the Spectrum Disk Preservation and Missing In Action projects!

Spectrum Tape Preservation (STP) Project – Questions & Answers:

  1. What is the purpose of the STP project ?
  2. Why should I make digital backups (TZXs) of my tapes ?
  3. What file format should I submit my files in ?
  4. What files should I send or not send ?
  5. How do I know if the title I wish to submit is already resolved ?
  6. What other information should I supply when submitting a title ?
  7. How can I help if I can’t dump disks myself ?

1. What is the purpose of the STP project ?

The purpose of the STP project is to gather perfect TZXs for tapes that aren’t already available on The .TZX Vault.

It’s a replacment for the previous MIS (Missing in Snaption) project, but instead of looking for TZXs of titles only available as Z80s it’s been extended to anything that is not already listed as perfect or found on The .TZX Vault. We’re also looking for each release of a title, be it the original release or re-release, in some cases titles were re-released more than once.

We want to make an archive as complete as possible with perfect images taken from original tapes (or even copies as long as they originated form an original tape complete with loader and pause timings).

In addition, we are also storing Covertapes and Compilations on a side per side basis.

2. Why should I make digital backups (TZXs) of my tapes ?

As time goes by, the magnetic surface of your tape(s) will become degraded with signal dropouts and sections of data totally erased or unreadable.

You’ll not be able to load them into a real Spectrum and the data on them will be lost forever unless you take action NOW!

If you backup your tapes using the myriad of available TZX utilities then you have to opportunity to immortalise them in the TZX format and store them on the central archive WOS (World of Spectrum) & The .TZX Vault. If titles are denied distribution, then still back them up for your own purpose, although they cannot be put on-line at WOS or The .TZX Vault they can still be stored until such time that the software companies waive the ban (This is currently a ‘Work In Progress‘).

3. What file format should I submit my files in?

The best file format to digitally backup spectrum tapes (in my opinion) is the TZX format. The TZX format will acuratly reproduce the source tape to give you an ‘exact‘ authentic backup. From this ‘parent‘ tape format we can create TAP and Z80 files if required, we can also crack TZXs that use custom loaders to use standard ROM loading routines and store them as TAP.

We’ve had people saying that you cut out other platforms and portable handheld devices by this project. Well this is not our aim, our aim is preservation, someone can always offer to convert TZXs into TAPs and Z80s for such purposes and most of them are already available at WOS and indeed playable online.

4. What files should I send or not send ?

For the STP project we are looking for perfect TZX backups of the original tape complete with loader, inlay scans and instructions if possible. It’s acceptable to submit a copied game as long as it originated from the original in the first place. For example your mate bought an original game from the shop many years ago, you copied the tape using a tape to tape method, these files are accepted by the STP project.

Covertape releases are not needed since I have most if not all of them on my Magazine Cover Tapes section. They usually use custom loaders and were never available to buy.

Cracked games are not usually accepted but are sometimes stored on WOS. The reason being that some have interesting loaders, especially non European versions.

5. How do I know if the title I wish to submit is already resolved ?

Simply point your browser at WOS and search for that particular title using the Infoseek search engine.

Upon seaching for a specific title, infoseek will quickly return any results matching your criteria.

If the tape is required it will state (Perfect TZX Required) under the availability section, otherwise it will be the first entry under the Download links.

You’ll also know if its been resolved and verified to be from an original tape if it appears in the recently added section from The .TZX Vault.

6. What other information should I supply when submitting a title ?

Please use the upload form. It would be advantageous if you could fill as much information as possible to help us identify the origin of the TZX being submitted. The upload form is going to be modified soon so that it’s more informative to the maintainers.

7. How can I help if I can’t dump tapes myself ?

If you are interested in helping us out but don’t have the hardware or knowlegde to make TZX images, then perhaps you’d consider loaning us the tapes. I’ve loaned many tapes before and can give you references if needed.

Please be aware that this is in no way a profit making scheme it’s simply to assist with fulfiling the MIA/STP/SDP projects. Any monies will only be available to Andrew Barker and Steve Brown. It will be used soley to buy auctioned (or from dealers) tapes and disks to resolve these projects and has no relation to WoS (or the TZX Vault itself for that matter) in any way.

TZX Vault | Andy's Spectrum Pages


A Big Thanks Goes Out To All Who Have Contributed Towards These Projects:


Adrian Seymour
Anders Jensen
Björn Eriksson
Cesare Falco
Daren Pearcy
Dave Foreman
David Batty
Dimitrios Kaparis
Donald Hay
Gary Poole

Garry Lancaster
George Miliatzidis
Gerard Sweeney
Graeme Yeandle
Gordon Hosie
Eddie Duffy
Thomas Andrews
Marko Princevac
Jonathan Needle
Graham Sturmy
Ivan Rakyta
Jamie Percival
Jose Manuel Claros
Martijn van der Heide
Martin Harrison
Miodrag Stancevic
Richard Burton
Milan Hozda
Nigel Fishwick
Paul Hurd
Simone Voltolini
Steve Brown
Cristian Secara
Damien Guard
David Batty
Dean Lowery
Derek Glenn
Gary Poole
John Hawkins
Jonathan Needle
Malcolm Hope
Mark Woodmass
Martin Ball
Milan Hozda
Paul Dunn
Paul Gough
Paul Thompson
Roy Goodwill
Steve Johnson
Thomas Andrews
Tony Barnett
Bruno Florindo
Lloyd Garland

I apologise if anyone has been missed off this list, and I will add you to it as soon as possible or I find your name in one of my e-mail accounts!

Many thanks (The Preservation Team)