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  • #31
    Originally posted by indianajo View Post
    There was a guy in Toronto in the seventies selling organs with about 30 speakers and amp channels - schoeder or somebody? Some people liked them, but they are showing up used for $100 remove it yourself. Consecutive notes on the keyboard were sent to different channels . .
    That was Shaw Organ, with more like 96 speakers/channels; and cost around $85,000 way back then, when a new Chevy would run you around $3,000, and a new Hammond H-100, $4,500. They didn't survive:

    http://www.organforum.com/gallery/di..._display_media
    Last edited by Clarion; 11-19-2014, 02:11 PM.
    2008: Phoenix III/44

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    • #32
      Here's a link to that Shaw Organ.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JWi2g...eature=related

      BO
      Make being happy a way of traveling, not just a destination.

      Church organ - 2 manual 12 rank Estey Pipe Organ with 12 Artisan Digital Stops
      Home organ - Allen R-230 organ (We also have 48 pipes in a facade)
      We have a Yamaha 6' 8" Grand
      Have used an older Korg T3 keyboard and MIDI for doing musical arrangements.
      I'm a Methodist organist.
      I taught high school chorus, elementary music and middle school music.
      Became a Technology Specialist.
      Retired from Education after 32 years.

      Comment


      • #33
        Originally posted by Bach-On View Post
        When I hit the Super Jackpot on Lotto, I'll build MY dream organ in my dream house on my dream island. Won't you?
        Abso-freakin'-lutely!

        And if I do decide to install an organ, it will be a real organ and not an imitation organ.
        I will hire the best acoustics experts to design the space for it, so there will be no compromises.

        Certainly it's possible for the best digital organ to sound better than a poorly designed or installed pipe organ placed in a compromising space.
        Isn't the whole reason for digital organs to get the sound of (insert your favorite REAL pipe organ here) into your location without the expense of duplicating that organ and the space it is in?
        I suppose one could sample the best ranks of various organs and then roll them into one well-done digital organ that was perfectly installed in the optimal space and get something better than the sum of it's parts.
        Has anyone ever actually compared the sound of an original organ and the sound of a digital organ based on the original?
        'Never ascribe to malice that which can be adequately explained by incompetence.' --N. Bonaparte

        My friends call me Steve, won't you be my friend?
        The cast, in order of appearance:
        Kawai K5, Yamaha PSR-85, Thomas Trianon A-6820, Gulbransen 621-K, Conn 580 T-2, GEM WK1 ST
        Hammond H-112, Ser. #16518, from 8/16/1971
        Oh, and let's don't forget the Jaymar!

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        • #34
          Wow. Talk about something to get this board talking. I've really only had time to skim. Arie hits the nail on the head that companies are barely surviving making "regular" digital organs. That's the big picture here.

          That being said, one speaker per unit stop/note (i.e., pipe) is overkill. I think I have pretty darn good ears. Better the most people. Having heard the largest Johannus organ in North America, which has something like 75 channels for a 4 manual organ, it's hard to believe you could improve very much on the sound. You might see improvement with a few more channels, in very limited circumstances like tutti registrations, but generally speaking it sounded amazing and as close to a pipe organ as any I've heard. (I haven't gotten around to hearing any of the Allen Elite organs, or M&Os. I'm sure they are similar.) So, for a typical large organ specification, it seem like 20-25 channels per division keeps various distortions well under control.

          BTW - as for the Shaw organs, you can't really compare because analog organs didn't have a way to "smart allocate" speakers to notes & stops, which presumably most modern digital organs do. (Although, of course, it was an analog organ that first did C/C# splitting, I'm talking about taking it way beyond that, like what jbird has said the Baldwin digitals did)

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          • #35
            Originally posted by SBurton View Post
            Has anyone ever actually compared the sound of an original organ and the sound of a digital organ based on the original?
            Yes, the attendees of the ATOS 2014 national convention. As I alluded to earlier in the thread, Allen sampled the Barton pipe organ in the venue and loaded those samples into a Quantum theatre model. They installed speakers in the organ chambers. The Quantum and Barton were placed on the same stage and Mark Herman and David Gray took turns in playing each of them, both individually and together. There was a subtle difference between them but that difference was not such that one could distinguish which was the electronic and which was the digital. For all intents and purposes they were indistinguishable from one another.
            Last edited by Admin; 11-20-2014, 04:43 AM.
            -Admin

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

            Comment


            • #36
              I want to thank everyone for the discussion. I won't try to summarize, because I don't know that any real consensus was reached.

              Some feel my original hairbrained idea is just too impractical. And they may be right. Some say the cost would be so high that is would rival the cost of a good pipe organ. "So why not just build a good pipe organ?"

              I sense some acceptance that more discreet channels might eliminate some intermodulation distortion. But I'm not certain that there is agreement on how many channels are enough.

              People still seem to agree that the skills and technique of the people performing the installation are key - no matter what kind of organ is installed.

              And I think some figure you CAN still hear the difference between a digital and a pipe, but what we are hearing may be close enough to satisfy many.

              Anyway, I've appreciated the relative tolerance from everyone. And I thank everyone for the reasonable discussion.

              I am not shutting down the topic. But I guess most have had more than enough of my pontification. ;-)

              Bach On

              P.S. I've also determined that I'm going to look a bit closer into buying Hauptwerk. :-B
              Make being happy a way of traveling, not just a destination.

              Church organ - 2 manual 12 rank Estey Pipe Organ with 12 Artisan Digital Stops
              Home organ - Allen R-230 organ (We also have 48 pipes in a facade)
              We have a Yamaha 6' 8" Grand
              Have used an older Korg T3 keyboard and MIDI for doing musical arrangements.
              I'm a Methodist organist.
              I taught high school chorus, elementary music and middle school music.
              Became a Technology Specialist.
              Retired from Education after 32 years.

              Comment


              • #37
                Originally posted by Bach-On View Post
                Here's a link to that Shaw Organ.

                http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JWi2g...eature=related

                BO
                That is one incredibly good sounding organ! Hard to believe that it is electronic.
                Mike

                My home organ is a circa 1990 Galanti Praeludium III, with Wicks/Viscount CM-100 module supplying extra voices. I also have an Allen MDS Theatre II (princess pedalboard!) with an MDS II MIDI Expander.

                Comment


                • #38
                  Originally posted by Bach-On View Post
                  I want to thank everyone for the discussion. I won't try to summarize, because I don't know that any real consensus was reached.

                  Some feel my original hairbrained idea is just too impractical. And they may be right. Some say the cost would be so high that is would rival the cost of a good pipe organ. "So why not just build a good pipe organ?"

                  I sense some acceptance that more discreet channels might eliminate some intermodulation distortion. But I'm not certain that there is agreement on how many channels are enough.

                  People still seem to agree that the skills and technique of the people performing the installation are key - no matter what kind of organ is installed.

                  And I think some figure you CAN still hear the difference between a digital and a pipe, but what we are hearing may be close enough to satisfy many.

                  Anyway, I've appreciated the relative tolerance from everyone. And I thank everyone for the reasonable discussion.

                  I am not shutting down the topic. But I guess most have had more than enough of my pontification. ;-)

                  Bach On

                  P.S. I've also determined that I'm going to look a bit closer into buying Hauptwerk. :-B
                  You really should look into Hauptwerk, and of course there you can experiment with all the channels of sound you can afford.

                  I do find myself disagreeing with those who say that one pair of speakers per keyboard is enough. There has been quite a discussion on the Hauptwerk forum about that subject, and the consensus was that maybe you could get away with it if the samples are very "wet" (meaning having a lot of reverberation included in the samples), but that "dry" samples (little or no reverberation) needed more audio channels. I personally use eight channels, and, since I do not normally couple manuals together when playing, I simply distribute the voices through all eight channels. For instance, the 8' Principal of the Great goes through the first stereo pair, the 4' octave through the next pair, the 2' Octave through the third pair, and the Mixture through the fourth pair. If I had the 8' Trumpet, that would go through the third pair. The 8' Flute goes through the second pair, and the 4' flute through the third or fourth pair. i certainly would not want the Swell Salicional playing through the same pair as its matching Celeste.
                  Mike

                  My home organ is a circa 1990 Galanti Praeludium III, with Wicks/Viscount CM-100 module supplying extra voices. I also have an Allen MDS Theatre II (princess pedalboard!) with an MDS II MIDI Expander.

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    I guess a compromise in design might be to have self-contained modules for each rank type consisting of the tone samples and the appropriate amps/speakers/crossover/etc. to best duplicate the sound for that particular rank- I would say only two channels per module are necessary - separated into C and C# channels like the old Gulbransen Rialto etc. to reduce inter modulation distortion. Also for something like a 16' 2.5 octave pedal rank you would need a much simpler module than say a full range 8' tibia rank.
                    These rank simulators can then be hooked to the organ stop control somehow - the organ keys will just be triggering the module. I have no idea how to implement this but I am sure there is a way.
                    Then you can make the organ as simple or as complex as you like. Start with maybe four rank modules and add more as needed?
                    Just an idea. Might work, might not.
                    Jimmy Williams
                    Hobbyist (organist/technician)
                    Gulbransen Model D with Leslie 204

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Crazy idea: Use just *one* amplifier outfitted with a whole series of speakers. Pressing a key completes the circuit to the speaker assigned to that key. Or, send a particular note to *all* the speakers but use a whole bunch of low-pass or high-pass filters to remove the notes that shouldn't go with any particular speaker: signal > filter1 > speaker1 > filter2 > speaker2 > filter3 > speaker3, etc. Like I said, crazy idea.

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                      • #41
                        I don't think it is crazy at all, in fact it makes perfect sense. First of all, the amplification is easy with today's integrated circuitry. As you say, for many of the pipes, in fact most of them, the speakers required would be inexpensive. Besides all that, have you priced what a single hand made pipe in a windchest supplied by a reservoir cost's? This is an old estimate, but some time ago I remember hearing costs of a rank of pipe average at least $ 10,000. That averages around $ 160.00 per pipe. I can assure you, it is entirely possible to amplify a signal with a very low distortion amplifier and put a speaker on it for that amount of money in all but the largest pipes. The average cost in a 16 foot rank would work out I bet. Generating the sampled voice is easy.
                        I think you should do this and prove your point. I will cheer you on!

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                        • #42
                          One of the points many have raised is cost. The organ market isn't huge, like computers, cellphones or candy bars. Economies of scale enter into the picture. I saw a 12 channel amplifier for a home distribution system. It was in the $640 range. That was for only 30 watts per channel and bare-bones adjustments - (these were monophonic channels). Units with more power and possibly better quality looked to be in the $3 to $4 thousand dollar range. Such units would have only a very narrow market, like organs. Mass production could bring the per unit cost down. But if the market stays narrow, the mass production cost saving won't ever come into play.

                          The consensus here seems to be that the remaining digital organ makers are already struggling to keep costs down. Adding to their R & D and manufacturing cost might tip them over the edge, thus putting them out of business.

                          Truthfully, if most people are satisfied with what is on the market, they won't be all that motivated to spend more. Or, if they can hear the difference, they may just chalk it up to the instrument being an electronic imitation - instead of a real pipe organ.

                          BO
                          Make being happy a way of traveling, not just a destination.

                          Church organ - 2 manual 12 rank Estey Pipe Organ with 12 Artisan Digital Stops
                          Home organ - Allen R-230 organ (We also have 48 pipes in a facade)
                          We have a Yamaha 6' 8" Grand
                          Have used an older Korg T3 keyboard and MIDI for doing musical arrangements.
                          I'm a Methodist organist.
                          I taught high school chorus, elementary music and middle school music.
                          Became a Technology Specialist.
                          Retired from Education after 32 years.

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            Originally posted by Bach-On View Post
                            One of the points many have raised is cost. The organ market isn't huge, like computers, cellphones or candy bars. Economies of scale enter into the picture. I saw a 12 channel amplifier for a home distribution system. It was in the $640 range.
                            The increased cost goes way beyond the cost of the speaker and the amplifier, the cost of packaging and installation has to be considered as well.

                            Those speakers have to be enclosed and mounted. Are you going to have an individual enclosure for each speaker? If you house multiple channels in a single enclosure you're defeating your purpose. How are you going to mount them and where? Are you going to require a chamber for them?

                            Next, you have to provide power and space for the amplifiers. Where are they going to be?

                            Now, you have to run cables for each channel from the console to the amplifiers, then speaker cables from the amplifiers to the speakers. And before you're done, don't forget the cost of the connectors on the end of each of those cables. Yes, no doubt some of the cabling costs could be reduced by moving the tone generation electronics out of the console to your amplifier room, which you'll likely have to cool, BTW, but you still have run all that speaker cable.

                            Again, it's not that it can't be done and it's not that it such an approach would not yield an improvement in sound. It's that the potential improvement is not worth the complexity and expense.

                            How complex? Well, if we go with your original proposal, a small ten rank organ would have over 700 speakers and amplifiers. If we go with a shared channel solution, you can probably get that down to 70 speakers and amplifiers. They're both going to be a nightmare to setup and service. Got a dead note? Which of the 70 amplifiers is it assigned to? Where is the speaker for that amplifier located? That's just a ten rank organ. Scale that up to a medium sized 30 rank instrument. Is that ever going to be a viable option?
                            -Admin

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

                            Comment


                            • #44
                              Admin.

                              You had already convinced me.

                              BO
                              Make being happy a way of traveling, not just a destination.

                              Church organ - 2 manual 12 rank Estey Pipe Organ with 12 Artisan Digital Stops
                              Home organ - Allen R-230 organ (We also have 48 pipes in a facade)
                              We have a Yamaha 6' 8" Grand
                              Have used an older Korg T3 keyboard and MIDI for doing musical arrangements.
                              I'm a Methodist organist.
                              I taught high school chorus, elementary music and middle school music.
                              Became a Technology Specialist.
                              Retired from Education after 32 years.

                              Comment


                              • #45
                                Originally posted by Bach-On View Post
                                Here's a link to that Shaw Organ.

                                http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JWi2g...eature=related

                                BO
                                Thanks! That's the first time I ever heard a Shaw organ. What a ghastly, ill-sounding contraption!! :o

                                All of those speakers didn't make any difference whatsoever, when driven by something that sounds like a primitive sterile frequency-divider source. Conn organs of that era with their 96 tone generators, and only a few speakers, were light years ahead of Shaw, in terms of just totally great sound. I remember visiting a small country church way back in the mid sixties. As we walked up to the door, we could hear the organ playing; and remember thinking: "Wow! They have a pipe organ here!!" The 'pipe organ' turned out to be a Conn spinet!!!!! :-P

                                And now, with digital organs, with each and every note of each and every stop, being individually tuned, you have up to 4000 tone generators at work at any one time on a modestly sized digital organ. I don't really care about how many speakers a digital organ possesses. The number of speakers don't make all that much difference other than for special/surround sound effect.

                                The true genius with any instrument is ALL about tuning!! Tuning done by an ARTIST, rather than a scientist!
                                2008: Phoenix III/44

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