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Why are classic organ sounds usually played on the Great manual?

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  • Why are classic organ sounds usually played on the Great manual?

    And other sounds, like trumpet, strings, and flute are usually played on the Swell manual, or Choir manual if there are three manuals.

  • #2
    Tones on the Swell manual are under expression to vary the volume.

    The Great has a principal chorus with upper pitches as well as fractional pitches. Often they have Mixtures. On the Great manual you will find some Flutes, and often a reed such as an organ Trumpet to give the organ even more volume. The Great manual is not under expression in a pipe organ.
    Baldwin Church Organ Model 48C
    Baldwin Spinet 58R
    Lowrey Spinet SCL
    Wurlitzer 4100A
    Crown Pump Organ by Geo. P. Bent, Chicago, Illinois


    Organs I hope to obtain in the future:

    Conn Tube Minuet or Caprice even a transistor Caprice with the color coded tabs
    Gulbransen H3 or G3, or V.
    Wurlitzer 44, 4410, 4420, ES Reed Models, 4300, 4500, Transistor Models

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    • #3
      Classical sounds are available on most all divisions on organs of any size. The more "Romantic" and Orchestral sounds are very often played on other manuals (swell, choir etc) because one so often needs expression when such ranks are used. The Great can also be used as sort of a backbone with principals and flutes and having an expressed division such as the swell coupled to it using the expression pedal to build the sound from the foundation of the Great as you approach the musical climax.

      Much of the Baroque music will use two or more manuals set up with different dynamic levels and tone colors such that the organist moves back and forth between manuals (often very quickly as in one or two measures). In this case "classical" sounds are being used on all manuals.

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

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      • #4
        With digitals of course the great can be under expression and often is. But it is still standard practice to put the large principal chorus in the great. And it is almost always true that every other division of the organ can be coupled to the great, so you can really have a massive sound available with it all coupled together.
        John
        ----------
        *** Please post your questions about technical service or repair matters ON THE FORUM. Do not send your questions to me or another member by private message. Information shared is for the benefit of the entire organ community, but other folks will not be helped by information we exchange in private messages!

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        • #5
          This makes me think of a question I've had but never asked. Is there anyway to adjust the volume I get when I use the "great unenclosed" tab on my ADC 6300? I realize the obvious answer is to trim the volume at the amp, but then the minimum volume with expression pedal all the way closed is too low.
          Hammond B-3, Rogers Allegiant 778, Yamaha YUS1-SG, Yamaha N2 Avant Grande

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          • #6
            Is the Great meant to make "bigger" sounds than the swell?

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            • #7
              Yep...............
              John
              ----------
              *** Please post your questions about technical service or repair matters ON THE FORUM. Do not send your questions to me or another member by private message. Information shared is for the benefit of the entire organ community, but other folks will not be helped by information we exchange in private messages!

              https://www.facebook.com/pages/Birds...97551893588434

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