Is going digital totally worth it? If you have the time and make the effort, the short answer is YES ... In the images above, over 220 audio tapes containing music, diary, chase logs, and sentimental memories were painstakingly digitized and re-mastered over 4 months time to 221 separate 64 Kbps MP3 files, totalling about 6.5 GB in hard-drive space. The pile of 220+ tapes can be seen surrounding a tiny 8 GB thumb drive (USB drive).
All the tapes, once digitized, can be stored entirely on the 8 GB drive, with much room (over 1 GB) to spare! To the right is the thumb drive in front of the old analog recorder (barely working) and a newer digital voice recorder to it's right (tapeless recorder that saves MP3 files in stereo). The tapes and old analog equipment can be scrapped, and the digital media used instead. The digital media can also be easily copied, backed up, burned to CD / DVD, with no need to search, rewind, cue, etc.
Digital conversion can also involve scanning old photographs and cleaning them up, and / or converting video to tapeless format (such as VHS to DVD and such). This is the way to go to preserve un-reliable / old recording media and the memories cherished with it.