Assistance needed with system component configuration

I need some help configuring my system components. I am soon to take delivery of new recording device, the second one in my system. The new recorder will be analog input/output only. The current digital recorder has a digital output, so I will not need to output an analog signal from the current recorder. My system is not minimalist. I have a combo home theater/2 channel system with a lot of gear in a double-wide rack with four shelves. I enjoy my audio toys, and I am not looking to remove any of them. I use an equalizer (with no tape loop) when recording, so that must remain in the recording chain. The problem is that I am outgrowing the jack pack on my preamp (McIntosh C220). With only one tape loop, I have a bit of a dilemma. So here are the four possible configurations I am considering. What I would appreciate is comments on which might be preferable from a signal purity and integrity standpoint. Assume that all cabling will be of equal and good quality and that I am not going spend more mobney to accomplish this (i.e., replace my preamp with a preamp that has two tape loops). TIA.

1. Preamp Tape Out > Equalizer input > Equalizer Output to a vintage, cheap Rat Shack input/output selector with two outputs > each of two recording device inputs > New recorder analog output to preamp tape input.

2. Preamp Tape Out > Equalizer input > Equalilzer output to two pairs of Y-cables, one pair for each recording device > New recorder analog output to preamp tape input.

3. Preamp Tape Out > Equalizer input > Equalizer output > input of a vintage mid-fi audio receiver with two tape loops(I have a couple laying around) > one set of tape outputs from the receiver to each recording device > New recorder analog output to preamp input.

4.  Preamp Tape Out > Equalizer input > Equalizer output > current recorder analog input > current recorder analog output > new recorder analog input > new recorder analog output > preamp tape input. (Note that this configuration would require the current recorder to be powered up when feeding a signal to the new recorder.  While the outputs are fixed line level, the input has a ganged level control that cannot be defeated.)
So, I have finally found a topic about which audiophiles have no opinions?  Wow!
Bondman - 

Although this appears to be discontinued, it appears to be exactly what you need so maybe try to track one down or something similar.

Other options (although more complex) would be a recording mixer that has assignable I/O routing.

That said, of your options above:

1 - Could be OK, but can't imagine that the quality of the RS box is very good plus it only has a single output so night ideally suited.

2 - Aside from Y cables, this looks like a better solution than #1

3 - Nope - Wouldn't add any active device in the signal chain as it will effect the sound and has its own gain section.

4 - I like this option best, but not knowing your gear, I assume that there's no way to bypass the gain stage on TP1 before routing to TP2, so that will require fiddling for every recording session.

Personally, if it were me I would:

1- Try to track down a similar unit to the one that I linked to
2- Pursue a proper professional recording mixer/ console that would have assignable I/O's and loops for your EQ
3- Consider getting a different EQ (cheap) that has TP1/TP2 switching

Good luck with this one


Thanks, Greg.  I will try to find an old Niles box.  I forgot about those!