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  • Allen System 1405 Information Wanted

    Allen System 1405

    Hello to all, I have been a lurker on the board for some time now, and I'd like to first thank everyone, especially the 'experts' for helping me to learn a lot more about electronic church organs.

    Our church recently expanded, a little beyond our budget, so we ran short on funds for a new [used] organ. We'd really like a Rodgers, but finding a decent one for what we want to pay will be a test of our patience. Myself and three other church members have decided to watch Craigslist and Ebay, as well as semi-local newspaper listings and try to locate a nice, serviceable slightly older organ, which we will purchase ourselves and donate to the church.

    One instrument that has caught our eye is an 'Allen System 1405' which seems to date from the early to mid 1980s, and that comes with quite a complement of speakers [and, we're assuming, amplifiers.] Its really a bit more organ than we need, but being human, all four of us would like to buy something more than we need LOL. And our plan for the additional speakers & amps it to put them into climate-controlled storage so that we would have a ready supply of replacements for the inevitable part failures.

    Has anyone any information on this organ? It is a large, three manual instrument, and the organist at the church where it is located says that it's not a standard model, and it has a somewhat custom assortment of stops. She is going to find whatever information the church has and email it to me.

    They are asking $8,000 for everything, which is almost exactly twice what we want to pay, plus it's at least a two day drive, one way, to the sellers location. We have at our disposal a large box truck with lift gate [and strong young men to help,] and two of our members were planning to go and pick up whatever instrument we eventually purchase.

    Here's the sellers listing here, its [currently] the third organ on the page. R.A. Daffer Church Organs, Inc. is listing the instrument, but the church is the one selling it:

    http://www.dafferorgans.com/pre-owned-organs/

    Anything anyone can tell me about this organ will be greatly appreciated. Opinions are welcome too, especially from anyone that has some direct experience with a similar instrument.

    Thanks to all - Jim Smith
    I'm so poor, my cats get free health care!

  • #2
    For the same price, from the same place, this smaller but newer organ should sound better and fit your needs better. It is an ADC model, which is more advanced than the one you are looking at:

    http://www.dafferorgans.com/pre-owne...-adc-3100.html

    Comment


    • #3
      Hmmm, I have to agree that the Allen ADC 3100 is a very attractive instrument. And, since the seller wouldn't have to do 'delivery & installation,' I'm sure we could get some money knocked off the asking price. I've noticed that the used organ market, like many other markets, is particularly soft right now. A seller should be happy to get any reasonable offer, with so many of us struggling to make ends meet.

      Ideally, being located in what I call Deep South Texas, we would find an adequate instrument in Austin, Corpus Christi, Houston or San Antonio. All four cities are within an easy two hour drive from our small town location. Even Dallas-Ft Worth is very doable from a travel perspective. If we're patient . . .
      I'm so poor, my cats get free health care!

      Comment


      • #4
        The 1405 is a MOS-2 model with four computers and was the largest digital model Allen made at the time. Because of the number of computers and audio channels, this organ will sound significantly better than an ADC3100. Some of the MOS-2 organs were expanded beyond the stock configuration with the SDDS system which dedicated an individual tone generator and channel for individual stops. Because of the large number of speakers included with this organ that may be the case here.

        See these links on SDDS:
        http://www.organforum.com/forums/sho...l=1#post248278

        http://www.organforum.com/forums/sho...l=1#post246520


        It's also easy to add MIDI to MOS-2 Allens with this adaptor:
        http://www.zumagroup.com/products/midi.aspx

        As you correctly observed prices for organs are soft right now, especially for an instrument of this size and age. I'm sure there's room for negotiation. If this instrument weren't across the continent from me, I'd be tempted if the price was more in the 5K to 6K range.
        -Admin

        Allen 965
        Zuma Group Midi Keyboard Encoder
        Zuma Group DM Midi Stop Controller
        Hauptwerk 4.2

        Comment


        • #5
          I have dealt with Al Murrell, a vice president of R. A. Daffer, and he is a first-rate guy in every respect. Any instrument purchased from his firm would undoubtedly be well-supported--there is no "dump and run" mentality there. Obviously, their prices have to be somewhat higher to cover this level of support, but pricing might be somewhat negotiable.

          I second Admin's comments about the superiority of the 1405 to the ADC 3100.

          Comment


          • #6
            I've been itching to point out how odd it is that Daffer's website trumpets themselves as a source for used Allen organs. I guess now's the time! Maybe they are smart enough to see that getting a congregation into a reasonable sounding electronic organ, even a competitor's, stands a better chance of supporting the world of ecclesiastical music than just having them throw their hands up and resigning themselves to "praise bands". With the ideal they will later buy a new Rodgers? Who knows.

            8000 is a little high for the 1405, and VERY high for the 3100. Even with "support". Remember that's an MADC-2, not the slightly better sounding MADC-3 like the 3160. (of course the best thing about those organs is really the stored wavetable card system, and both MADC-2 and MADC-3 have it.) That being said, I've been down there and they seem like really nice people. At least as a legitimate dealer, they have a "vested interest" in making used organ appear a bit more valuable than they really are. You might be able to talk them down a bit, especially if they are just consigning.

            If the church is large and reverberant, I think the 1405 would be the better investment. It might be in any case, but particularly in that case. Is is 3 manuals after all. The slight difference in fidelity between ADC and MOS-2 will not matter in a large room, and having as many as 8 frequency arrays instead of 2 will make it have a better ensemble. Actually, considering what they are asking, I agree with admin & don60, the 1405 is a no-brainer. If they only wanted $4000 for the 3100, it would start to be a toss up. The thing I'd get in writing is how support is going to be provided. Give it a darn good surge protector, please. (most of them are crap) If a MOS board dies, Allen will generally swap them, but they sure as heck aren't going to allow Daffer to coordinate that. And if for some reason you have to buy a full replacement MOS board, they are very expensive because they are the Jurassic dinosaurs of the digital world.
            Last edited by circa1949; 11-02-2011, 11:37 PM.

            Comment


            • #7
              In the case of the 1405, it is actually the church I would be dealing with. Daffer is simply helping them by listing the instrument for sale, and Mr. Murrell passed my request on to the church, altho he wrote me a very nice email as well. The church is still going to be using the organ until late January, and the organist mentioned the name of the company that would be putting the organ into proper working order prior to sale. The church was also talking about replacing the speaker drivers, which with so many speakers that would be a huge undertaking.

              We would much rather buy the organ in perfect working order, and the speakers as they are, as long as we can still get some good use out of them, and then, when finally necessary, replace the speaker drivers ourselves. Doing things in this manner would also allow us to stretch out the cost of the purchase over a much longer time. And speaker replacement is something that I have done on my own in the past. I need to check with the church and get a price taking this scenario into consideration. By my calculation replacing all those drivers would cost at least 2-3 thousand dollars [but I admit I don't know the quantity of drivers we're talking about]

              So, if the 1405 could be purchased for $4,000-$5,000, plus our transportation cost, we'd be right on it!

              ps: Thanks to all who've responded so far. Lots of great information on this board!
              I'm so poor, my cats get free health care!

              Comment


              • #8
                Replacing the surrounds on the drivers would be even cheaper, a lot cheaper. Unless the drivers have been damaged the surrounds should be the only thing needing replacement. Just a thought.

                mike
                If it is Caesar that you worship, then Caesar you shall serve.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Don't forget that dealers need to accommodate trade-ins in their asking prices, so a cash offer might get either the 1405 or 3100 at a somewhat lower price.

                  Toodles

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Admin View Post
                    The 1405 is a MOS-2 model with four computers and was the largest digital model Allen made at the time. Because of the number of computers and audio channels, this organ will sound significantly better than an ADC3100.
                    As the owner of an MOS-2 and an ADC instrument, I would definitely have to say you're getting much more organ with the 1405 than with the ADC-3100 I recently played a 3100, and had a very difficult time finding appropriate stops for standard literature. It bored me rather quickly, and would possibly do the same for your parishoners.

                    Check the stop list of the 3100. You'll find that it is lacking mutations, mixtures, and complete choruses on either manual. Of course, they can be made up by purchasing the cards, but as already stated by Admin and Don60, the 1405, though older and perhaps in need of speaker re-coning, would make the better, more satisfying instrument. BTW, I get my woofers re-coned for around $35 each and the mid-ranges for $25 each. That said, the price on both instruments is too high, but I guess there needs to be room for negotiation.

                    As far as moving is concerned, I traveled approximately 2,000 miles for one of my organs, 1,200 for another, and about 500 for the third. Did I mention that was one-way? I hope your purchase goes well and you are able to obtain what you need for your church. It's great to see churches still using organs, and I want to encourage them all I can.

                    Michael
                    Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
                    • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
                    • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
                    • 11 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 7 Pianos

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      For what it's worth, I'm having an Allen ADC 6300 moved from Houston, Texas, to the north end of Utah for about $1500. So while moving costs aren't cheap, the costs are not prohibitive--by the way, that includes 17 speakers (don't yet know what I'm going to do with all of them!).

                      The ADC-3100 is a somewhat limited stoplist; its replacement the ADC-3160 was a better stoplist, though still lacking in Great mutations. The 1405 would have lots of tonal resources.

                      As far as speaker replacement/speaker surround replacement, Allen charges lots for the replacement speakers. Replacing surrounds on the woofers is relatively easy and workable, however, the mid-range surrounds on the HC-12 & HC-14/15 are also subject to foam rot, and the an exact surround replacement is not available, so if there are lots of speakers and all the driver surrounds are being replaced (or the drivers) the asking price might be a bargain.

                      Parts Express sells a set of surrounds for Bose drivers that seems a match for the Peerless midranges that Allen used--I bought a set for some Allen cabinets I have.

                      Toodles

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by toodles View Post
                        As far as speaker replacement/speaker surround replacement, Allen charges lots for the replacement speakers.
                        Yer tellin' me!!!=-O When I purchased my 505-B in 2007 (I think), I had it set up to use for a symphony concert at the local auditorium (before we had the 6000). After the first rehearsal, the sound person told me he was hearing something from my speakers. At least one of the woofer surrounds had complete disintegrated!

                        I hurriedly called my rep and ordered a pair for the 32' channel, and they were roughly $250.00 EACH!!! They didn't even arrive in time for the concert a week later. Fortunately, I had 4 extra speakers that were used for the antiphonal I wasn't using for the concert, so I was able to piece together 2 usable speakers from the parts.

                        My advice--find someone who can do the surrounds, or learn to do them yourself. It is definitely worth it!

                        Michael
                        Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
                        • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
                        • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
                        • 11 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 7 Pianos

                        Comment

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