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  • Allen adr-4

    Hello,
    Sounds the Reverb. ADR-4 in a Allen ADC 430A good or not so good? It is a digital reverb?
    Chris

  • #2
    It is a digital reverb developed in the mid to late 1980's. I find the sound acceptable. If you're buying it as a separate module, I think you can get better sound from other units. If it is installed in an organ you are considering, it should be fine unless you decide to upgrade it.

    My problem with most built-in reverb is that the reverb sound comes from the same location as the main speakers. In a real acoustic space, the reverb echoes come from a different location, so I prefer independent speakers for reverb.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by toodles View Post
      It is a digital reverb developed in the mid to late 1980's. I find the sound acceptable. If you're buying it as a separate module, I think you can get better sound from other units. If it is installed in an organ you are considering, it should be fine unless you decide to upgrade it.

      My problem with most built-in reverb is that the reverb sound comes from the same location as the main speakers. In a real acoustic space, the reverb echoes come from a different location, so I prefer independent speakers for reverb.
      This is why I never liked the reverb in my Hammond A100, it was backwards, the Leslie 122 was dry and apart from the organ space, but here I had reverb under my feet! Solved it by sticking a 12" on the wall with one screw at the top ( magnet facing out). Left it that way for months before I made a cabinet for it. Just an open cone like that for reverb works fine btw, it's worth the 15 minutes running the speaker wire to the remote reverb speaker.

      Stumbled onto this thread because I saw an ALLEN ADR-4 for $20 on Ebay. It's digital yes, but is it A/D/D/A? Knowing that Allens are DIGITAL was curious if it is just a digital to digital circuit? Either way, you can get a good Alesis MICROVERB, NANOVERB,ART MULTI-VERB or PRO-VERB, or Lexicon, or even an excellent sounding lower priced Zoom rack reverb for peanuts these days. About $40-$50 at any MUSIC GO ROUND near you. Or of course, online + shipping. Beats the $2,000 for a digital reverb in the early to mid 80's. Was given an old high end reverb rack from Wally Hyder Studios during a tear out way back when and when I took it apart it was FILLED with memory chips. It was a good project for learning how they worked, but completely obsolete except for nostalgic purposes...it being digital and all, more to look at than listen to, sadly. These days I'm enamored by the amazing stuff I can do with FL STUDIO and the myriad of PLUG-INS and VST's. Have been working with the Abby Road plug-ins as of late and am very impressed! The SOFTUBES 'SATURATION' KNOB is pretty awesome too. At 64 bit and counting there is more going on in one VST than that whole physical rack mount in the 80's. Crazy!
      Wurlitzer '46' Model 31 Orgatron & 310 rotary cab, 56' 4410 , 65' 4300
      Hammond '55' S6 Chord Organ,HR-40,ER-20, 1971 X66/& 12-77 tone cabinet w/ 122 kit & TREK Transposer- of which I've retrofitted a Wurlitzer/Lowrey 'PedAL gLIdE' awesome!
      Gulbransen 61' 1132 '76' Rialto II & Leslie 705 + two 540
      Conn '57' 406 Caprice '59' 815 Classic (the 29th 815)
      PLEASE SAVE THE WURLITZER ELECTROSTATIC CONTINUOUS-FREE-REED ORGANS 1953'-1961' Hammond TW's ONLY TRUE COMPETITOR! (Ggl> NSHOS WURLI 4600)

      Comment


      • #4
        The Allen ADR-4 is indeed A/D/D/A. Organs with this unit built in had a reverb mixer board that intercepted the numerous audio signals between the cage and the amp. This mixer derived a composite mono signal from the multiple inputs, and sent that mono signal to the ADR-4. In the ADR, the mono signal went into a pair of digital processors where it was treated to the various delays and sustains and loops needed to create a reverb signal. This reverberated ("wet") signal, now a stereo pair, was then sent back to the reverb mixer, where it was blended into the outgoing audio signals, some channels receiving the left and some the right reverb channel. From thence, of course, the audio was delivered to the amps and speakers.

        Allen's philosophy on reverb back then was to keep it minimal, so the ADR-4 would not normally be set up to deliver a big juicy reverb, though it was always possible to juice it up by raising the output levels on the ADR unit, or by futzing with the DIP switches that control the reverb length and pre-delay. But I don't think I ever heard one that gave the type of "swimming in reverb" effect that you can get with today's outboard processors, such as the Lexicon or the Alesis. Used with a four-channel or larger organ, with the speakers spread around the room, one might get a reasonably good reverb out of the ADR-4, just not that cathedral reverb you might hope for.

        I wouldn't recommend anybody buying an ADR-4 with the intention of using it in just any application. For one thing, you need the Allen power supply wiring harness, which was made up and hanging there inside the console of reverb-ready organs. Lacking that harness, and the power supplies that provide the various voltages that it requires, you'd have to spend some money and time rigging up the proper kind of power supply to run it.

        Also, since it outputs a pure "wet" signal, it must be used with some kind of mixer so that it can be inserted into the "effects loop" rather than simply routing the audio straight through it, as you can do with the modern professional processors.

        So, if your Allen is prepared for the ADR-4, getting one for $20 is a great way to add digital reverb. But if your organ doesn't have the prep in place, you might be buying a headache.
        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

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by jbird604 View Post
          Also, since it outputs a pure "wet" signal, it must be used with some kind of mixer so that it can be inserted into the "effects loop" rather than simply routing the audio straight through it, as you can do with the modern professional processors..
          Allen's intent and recommendation in those days was that the reverb be routed to dedicated channels and speakers and not be mixed back to the main channels. Whether this was for sonic benefit or for practical reasons I don't know, but other organ manufacturers had separate chains for reverb as well. My organ is still set up this way.
          -Admin

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

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          • #6
            I agree whole heartedly with paulj0557 comments. To me reverb is useless unless you can run the return into a separate amp and separate speaker(s)....usually set away from the main speakers. I will never run (mix it) with the main speakers. Yet, I could see one doing that to save the expense of the additional equipment needed. You would be happy with a Alesis Nanoverb of which, you can mix the type of reverb, the ratio between "wet" and "dry" sound (signal).

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            • #7
              Separate dry and wet channels were called stereo back in the 50'...

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              • #8
                Originally posted by blhristov View Post
                Separate dry and wet channels were called stereo back in the 50'...
                LOL and how right you are! Reverb and tape echo as utilized on organs is probably the best practical use for these effects without a doubt. I especially liked the SCHOBER TAPE REVERB [ tape echo]unit I used to have. It was the smaller aluminum box with a clear Plexiglas front cover that protected the tape loop, and the aqua green REC/PB/ERASE heads. It was a lucky thrift store find for a few dollars. As a guitar player my favorites were the WATKINS COPICAT MARK IV, and the FOSTEX DUAL SPRING REVERB in a 2U RACK SPACE.

                I would be thrilled if someone would do an in depth video clinic on the incredible KEN GRIFFIN reverb/echo ( overdubbing) techniques. Before Ken's life was cut short at age 46 in 1956, he had accumulated an amazing body of work, using not only Hammond Tone Wheel organs, but the equally amazing Wurlitzer electrostatic free-reed organ model 4600, and the Conn [ would have been either the CONNSONATA, the CLASSIC, or ARTISTE...which at the time were more similar to one another- all vacuum tube individual oscillator].
                Perhaps someone can help me recall which of his albums had the best reverb/overdub/echo ( I believe slap back echo using reel to reel tape decks was mentioned). These particular recordings of his had me floored on this occasion I listened to them. Can't remember if the person that posted them said they were from a record of his or unpublished tracks. They certainly sounded studio recorded though. Just excellent playing and the best 'stereo echo' I've ever heard!

                As I have mentioned on the OF I have been playing and restoring the electronics in my 57' CONN CLASSIC 815 lately. It sounds good, but I do really need to do some RR of all of the important capacitors and resistors for it to sound like John Winters Organ Moods. Any input would be appreciated along these lines. Also need a 700 series add-on percussion unit installation /owners /service manual. -Thanks:)
                Wurlitzer '46' Model 31 Orgatron & 310 rotary cab, 56' 4410 , 65' 4300
                Hammond '55' S6 Chord Organ,HR-40,ER-20, 1971 X66/& 12-77 tone cabinet w/ 122 kit & TREK Transposer- of which I've retrofitted a Wurlitzer/Lowrey 'PedAL gLIdE' awesome!
                Gulbransen 61' 1132 '76' Rialto II & Leslie 705 + two 540
                Conn '57' 406 Caprice '59' 815 Classic (the 29th 815)
                PLEASE SAVE THE WURLITZER ELECTROSTATIC CONTINUOUS-FREE-REED ORGANS 1953'-1961' Hammond TW's ONLY TRUE COMPETITOR! (Ggl> NSHOS WURLI 4600)

                Comment

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