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The magnetic recording process is examined by using a model which easily clarifies the role of the particle nucleation field. An inverse cosine and constant angular dependence of the nucleation field are utilized to encompass measured single particle switching behavior. The model neglects demagnetization fields and is applied to contact recording on thick media. The primary conclusion is that the angular dependence affects the output of longitudinally well-oriented particles by raising the voltage maximum approximately 5 dB above that for a constant nucleation field. Vertically oriented particles exhibit large maximum voltages independent of the nucleation field angular dependence.