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Johannus Studio 170 for $5500?

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  • Johannus Studio 170 for $5500?

    While looking for a used practice organ, I found a Johannus dealer willing to sell me a new low-end model for $5500. That's above my price range of $3000, but sounds worth thinking about. I noticed that the Johannus studio models sound really tinny on their youtube demos. Do you think it might sound better than an older Allen or Rogers in the $3k range?


  • #2
    I wouldn't use youtube videos to assess the sound quality. A local church here has a large 3-manual Johannus and it does not sound tinny. 'Course it's a much larger instrument.

    If you prefer the European sound, Johannus should be fine; if you prefer a more American sound, Allen and Rodgers are probably better options.

    You can usually get a substantial used Allen or Rodgers in the $3,000 price range. Possibly divided expression, crescendo, moving stop tablets, etc. Used organs are a very good value. Not that $5500 is bad for the 170. Construction quality is probably not the best in the bottom of the Johannus line.


    • #3
      Thanks. I think that's part of it; I didn't realize the European sound would be so different. It's different enough that I'm going to stick with an Allen or Rodgers. Thanks.


      • #4
        The Studio has four intonations including "romantic" (American classic). I would not consider this sound to be European or tinny. If you are interested in this instrument, you owe it to yourself to hear one in person before forming a judgment on the sound quality.

        Johannus shows suggested retail prices on their Web site. The selling price you quote is far below this suggested retail, an indication that the "dealer" may not be offering the full benefits of a real Johannus dealer--in particular, proper installation plus labor and parts coverage during the warranty period.

        I agree that for $5000 or even $3000 you can buy a very nice used instrument.


        • #5
          Just to clarify, I do not consider a European sound to be tinny. I also do not consider "romantic" to be the equivalent of American Classic, although Johannus might categorize it that way.

          American Classic is generally an eclectic approach. To me, American Classic is typified by Aeolian Skinner (G. Donald Harrison) and romantic would be an EM Skinner.


          • #6
            Johannus simply uses the term "romantic" for their version of American classic voicing. The other standard voicings on their new models are symphonic, baroque, and historic.

            Even on the American Classic 770, which was obviously designed in response to the U.S. market, the primary disposition is called "romantic."


            • #7
              I bought a Johannus studio organ for my home practice a couple of years ago. It is a fantastic instrument and well worth the money. Does anyone know how to remove the pedalboard? I have to move it within my house and am having a hard time finding instructions for it...


              • #8
                The pedalboard is retained by either one or two brass pins located in vertical holes at the toeboard. They are typically finished in a dark color to blend with the wood, but you will find them easily once you know to look for them. If two pins were fitted, they will be near the bass and treble ends of the pedalboard; if one pin was fitted, it is usually located in the swell shoe opening.

                To remove the pins, lever them up with a very thin screwdriver or grip them with pliers and work them upward out of the holes. They will reinstall easily with a few taps of a hammer once the pedalboard is properly located. You might need to tilt the console back very slightly to produce some clearance between the front of the pedalboard and the kneeboard of the console.

                There is a chance that the dealer did not install the pins, in which case the pedalboard will be held only by friction with the console.

                If you need an owner's manual, PM me through the Forum with your email address and the exact model and serial number of your organ. I can obtain the pdf you need from Johannus and send it along.

                The owner's manual should contain instructions for installing and removing the pedals.