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  • Rodgers 850 speaker placement

    So last night I spent a great deal of time hooking up some, not all, of the speaker cabinets to my new acquisition. I elected to just go with the 4 channels (2- swell, 2- great) I have to put the subwoofer back together (took 15' drivers out to lower cabinet 12 feet down to floor when uninstalling unit from church) before I hook it all back up but sure thats a no brainer.....to be hooked up to the pedal channel:->. Anyway, I'm very new at this classical/church electronic organ equipment and especially multi channel hook ups and feeds. The physical wiring part I get but trying to figure out "placement". All four amps that I hooked up to four of the speakers worked as well as the speakers themselves. I was very impressed with all those open backed 6x9's....they sound pretty good for being 35 plus years old. Each of the 4 cabinets I hooked up also has a JBL bullet tweeter hooked to them and found that I needed to attenuate the tweeters down almost all the way.......very effecient on the high end. My question, or pull for suggestions, is this; I have 4 more cabinets identical to the ones I've already hooked up except without the bullet tweeter(s). Does one or two channel(s) of the four benefit from adding more cabinets then the other(s)? Or do I just hook up 2 cabs per channel, per amp? The Horns seem to come from a distinct cabinet and the flutes from another whereas some of the other stops "share" both (depending if I'm playing solely on the great or swell manual) The Flutes (or their equivalent name) seem to be weaker in sound whereas the trumpets, etc seem very in your face. I just downloaded the manual so I'll be checking that tonight but thought I'd run this across the forum. Any suggestions would be helpful and appreciated!

  • #2
    Hi,

    Just a few comments regarding your setup.

    The speakers with the JBL bullets, I agree would be too much treble in a house. If I were you, take the tweeter plus the crossover right out of the circuit. I used to do that even in churches, and the result sounded better. These bullets put out an enormous amount of treble, why they even put them in I don't know.

    Probably, your setup is sufficient speaker wise.

    On the mixer board there are numerous levelling controls. I hav e found on a number of occasions that the pot had changed value just by sitting in the same position too long. Moving them around, and re-adjusting solved the problem of imbalances.

    AV

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    • #3
      I always thought the bullet tweeters were odd--they are incredibly efficient (loud) and have a 40 degree conical dispersion angle, which isn't anything like that of the other drivers.

      They were designed when CBS owned both Rodgers and JBL, and I suspect that influenced their use--maybe JBL had a surplus, or perhaps it was the lowest cost JBL tweeter available? They are NOT at all cheap, and they still sell for fairly high prices on ebay.

      Toodles.

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      • #4
        Is the mixing board the unit mounted on the reverse side of the kneeboard? behind all the swing out panels?
        As far as removing the JBL's, I had already pretty much decided on that as I couldn't get the highs to tame down much. Plus everyone of the JBL's had a different value cap on them and it looked factory and not resoldered.
        I could tell that this organ is going to be somewhat of a challenge to dial in the sound on. Voicing might be a better term but I have no idea what some of these stops are "suppose" to sound like. I just know some of them are quit obnoxious and could be or should be tamed down a tad. Full tutti organ is way to brassy shrilly sounding for my taste. Although I do not have the subwoofer hooked up for the pedal channel I would like to get some warmth out of the great/swell channels. Do either of the manuals send any signal to that subwoofer itself?

        Originally posted by arie v View Post
        Hi,

        Just a few comments regarding your setup.

        The speakers with the JBL bullets, I agree would be too much treble in a house. If I were you, take the tweeter plus the crossover right out of the circuit. I used to do that even in churches, and the result sounded better. These bullets put out an enormous amount of treble, why they even put them in I don't know.

        Probably, your setup is sufficient speaker wise.

        On the mixer board there are numerous levelling controls. I hav e found on a number of occasions that the pot had changed value just by sitting in the same position too long. Moving them around, and re-adjusting solved the problem of imbalances.

        AV

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        • #5
          The service manual shows the output preamps (which do the mixing) on the outer rack in the top row, in the slot one slot to the left of the right most slot (as you face the back of the organ). The service manual shows the location of each board on the same page as the schematic; you are looking for Output Preamps I and II.

          The schematic shows the pedal channel ONLY handling the 32' and 16' pedal stops, unless channels are mixed.

          I would suggest getting the speaker systems under control before revising any of the adjustments in the organ. The JBL bullets can work OK, and there should be an adjustment pot that let's you dial down the treble. These were inexpensive, and may not have survived. No harm would come from just disconnecting the bullet tweeters, but remove the wires (or tape the exposed ends) to avoid a short. In a home situation, you might find the natural roll-off of the 6x9s to be easy to live with.

          Next, set levels for the individual voices; this is done on the output preamps. When the levels are tamed, I think you'll find the overall sound is no longer too brassy.

          Toodles

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          • #6
            Thanks Toodles! Yes I know I have been studying the service manual to get my bearings on this organ. Man there are a ton of thumbwheel pots on these circuits. There are, were, pots on each of the JBL tweeters and though they worked when I turned them down it still wasn't enough for my ears. These speaker cabnets (8 of them) were all installed in one cramped location in the churches front attic area. Nothing tells me, except for the "echo" speakers (4) that there was any reasoning behind the placement although none of the cabinets were facing towards the congregation. Mostly at odd angles and 4 of them( without the tweeters) were above the other 4 angled down towards the 4 with tweeters. So I am assuming that it had alot to do with the installers ears. The way I have them set up in my garage (for now) are like left right stereo which I'm beginning to see that maybe wasn't ever intended:embarrassed: Like I said it looks like I have some time ahead of me to "voice" it for my surroundings but thats what I like to do!

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            • #7
              Great News!
              I removed the JBL tweeters out of the system and that helped tremendously! I also, by studying the service manual, gently "tweaked" (I would use the word "voiced" but think I should save that term for the professionals of this type of work) some of the adjustments for the stops on the great manual and pedals. Its getting better now! One thing I think I'm looking for is to un-sterilize some of these stops. To me they just seem so straight toned. The flute celesteII sounds good. This might be just me getting use to a classical/church organ. The organ, before I made any adjustments, was heavy on the diapason/reed? sound(s). Flutes were very muted. I tend to be more in favor of the flute sounds with added string/reeds. So I'm wondering if a professional installer (voicing) goes by what is suppose to be the correct sound of each stop or what that particular church or organist wants the organ to be voiced as? As for me I guess I won't be satisfied till I hear it the way I think it should be..........anyway, its looking (sounding) good! I appreciate everyones comments thus far and for overlooking my ignorance in this new field (to me) of organ style! Its kinda funny....I've played and toyed and rebuilt and modified Hammonds for so long that who knew I would be switching styles so late in the game..LOL

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              • #8
                Voicing an electronic installation always takes into consideration the preferences of the organist and the church's musical style.

                Traditionally, the Trompette would be the loudest stop, then the Great Principal (diapason). The swell diapason would be slightly softer compared to the Great, and followed by the Swell Flute, then the Great Flute. The Krummhorn is an antique precursor of the Clarinet, and typically would be between the Great Diapason and Flute in loudness.

                Also, the physical stops on a classical organ are supposed to be arranged
                1. Flutes (flutes, strings, diapasons) by pitch (lowest to highest)
                2. Mixtures
                3. Reeds by pitch.

                Within those groups, the order is loudest to softest. This gives you a clue as to what the designer intended for loudness.

                That sequence is left to right for tabs, and bottom to top for drawknobs (which makes it a little harder to follow the sequence). And, in drawknobs, it is less likely to be strictly followed, whereas in tab consoles it is almost always strictly followed.

                That said, voice the organ the way you like it. Bump up the flutes, and if you want a more string-like diapason, make them softer: I'd use the Stop Control level switches to do this; as those are set for a softer voice, they get brighter. Compare the Great Principal 8' to the Gambe 8': they are both the diapason keyer, but the Principal is full volume, and the Gambe is keyed softer. It should sound a bit brighter.

                For a bit warmer sound, you can increase the activity setting (see the tremulants & oscillator schematic for this); also, you probably want to tune the instrument; you can make the ensemble oscillators a little farther off correct tuning for a very warm sound. Typicallly, you don't hear any complaints about an analog Rodgers with dual oscillator sets not having enough ensemble.

                Yes, the flute celeste on analog Rodgers organs is gorgeous.

                Have fun making this your instrument.

                Toodles.

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                • #9
                  Thanks Toodles!
                  That gives me somewhat of a baseline to go off of. I'm sure I'll catch on to this at some point but that info gives me direction.
                  R. Dean

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