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Practice Organ: Rodgers C-505 or Allen 123-C, Advice please!

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  • Practice Organ: Rodgers C-505 or Allen 123-C, Advice please!



    Hi all,</P>


    Although I have been reading through your posts for a while, I am new to this forum and this is my first post. I am a church organist (pipe organ) currently looking for a good practice organ for at home.My children are young and it's getting harder to get out at night to practice at the church.I love the sound of todays new digital organs, but....my budget is somewhat limited. And so I have been on the lookout for an affordable alternative. I have been looking at Allen and Rodgers organs and I was hoping you could give me some pointers as to what to look for and what to look out for.</P>


    I found a Rodgers C-505 with MIDI not too far from here that is within my budget ($1000), but apparently it has some issues with a fewof the keypads and notes not responding. The lady who currently owns the organ had this repaired two years ago, but the problem came back and the dealer tells her it's because she doesn't play often enough. Apparently after playing the keys over and over again, they do start responding again. Does anyone know the vintage of this organ? Is it digital?</P>


    Then there's an Allen 123-C with Random Motion and Capture Action available, which is also reasonably priced ($1200), but it is a little farther away. </P>


    I was hoping that maybe some of you on this forum are familiar with either ofthese two organs, and could give me some pointers as to which one is better, or maybe recommend a different organ. Because I play a pipe organ in church, I prefer an electronic/digital organ that sounds realistic.And of course I need AGO pedals. I personally know nothing about the technical stuff...I would just like to know if there are certain things to look for when buying an older organ. I have been looking on ebay for a while, but nothing suitable has come up within a reasonable distance from where I live (Washington State). If anyone out there knows of any organs available in my area that might be appropriate, please let me know!! From what I've read it's best to look for either Allen or Rodgers. Are there any models thatI should never consider,or models that I should definitely look for? There are so many Allen's and Rodgers' out there.....Looking for suggestions/advice, thanks!!</P>


    </P>

  • #2
    Re: Practice Organ: Rodgers C-505 or Allen 123-C, Advice please!

    I have a Allen 123C .. I'm not wild about it, but its a good solid practice organ.

    I highly recommend adding a reverb unit to it if you get the Allen as it makes it sound much better.

    The Rodgers with MIDI would allow you to add a modern MIDI unit with all the new fantastic digitally sampled stops etc.

    I'd go with the Rodgers... but make sure you play them both before b uying. in the end which ever you like best is the one you should get.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Practice Organ: Rodgers C-505 or Allen 123-C, Advice please!

      Thanks NYCFarmboy! Do you think the keypad issue with the Rodgers is something to be concerned about? I don't want to have an organ that has non-responding notesand needs to be repaired all the time. My dad does have more technical knowledge of organs, do you think this could be easily fixed? It just worries me that the dealership did the repair two years ago, and it is still an issue... They claim it's because the organ hasn't been played enough, is thispossible, in your opinion? Also, I've heard that older analog Rodgers have a better sound....which models would you recommend as good analog organs? Thanks again...

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Practice Organ: Rodgers C-505 or Allen 123-C, Advice please!

        Hi,



        It was common practice to build organs with "self-cleaning contacts" in
        which the electrical signals and friction alone would keep the metal
        contacts clean. That sounds like your issue with the Rodgers. Nowadays,
        I think everyone uses either electro-optical or magnetic switching for
        the keys.



        I'm in a similar situation but I don't have any budget :-).







        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Practice Organ: Rodgers C-505 or Allen 123-C, Advice please!



          Thank you John....You don't have any budget as in: you don't have any money, or:you have lots of money and therefore don't have to worry about how much to spend?...Hope for you it's the latter..[:)]</P>


          There is also a classic Rodgers 115 analog organ for sale inmy area. Does anyone on this forumhave any experience with this model? The console was in very good condition, but the current owner doesn't have it set up so I can'ttry it out....Anyone out there know anything about the Rodgers 115 or how it sounds? The seller wants $5000 for it which I think is quite steep for a 1973 organ....</P>


          </P>

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Practice Organ: Rodgers C-505 or Allen 123-C, Advice please!

            ballpark ebay sell prices for organs:

            Allen 123C 750- 1k TOPS
            Rodgers 2 manual 1-2k (high end price for drawknob models)
            Rodgers 3 manual 2-4 k (same, high end price for drawknob models).

            A Rodgers 115 is worth at most 500 bucks. I bought my Rodgers 100 for 250 bucks.

            all depends on condition, and again try BEFORE paying.

            watch ebay for organ prices to get a feel for it.. don't pay asking price as most don't know how little their treasured hierloom organ is worth.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Practice Organ: Rodgers C-505 or Allen 123-C, Advice please!

              Hi,

              Just to say that the Allen model mentioned is from the mid 70s, the Rodgers is from the early 90s. The Rodgers most likely will sound a bit better. Neither is voiceable to any degree.

              As to the Rodgers having keyboard problems, this is not unusual in these organs. They have collapsing rubber dome switches. Think phone dial switches, calculator switches etc. What they have in these keyboards is rubber domes that have a carbon pad that shorts out some gold clad traces on a circuit board. Eventually the carbon wears out so you get intermittant notes, or worse notes that don't play at all. The only remedy is to replace these contact strips - which may be for 8 notes, 12 notes or a strip for the whole keyboard. These types of switches are extremely common now, and are reliable for 10 or more years, usually.

              In terms of overall build quality, the Allen would be superior.

              As to the Rodgers 115, I believe this was the Deseret model sold to the LDS church. They date from the mid 70s. They are well built, but musically no great shakes.

              Arie V.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Practice Organ: Rodgers C-505 or Allen 123-C, Advice please!

                As in I don't have any money to spend. But thanks for the moment of
                optimism!! Besides $, my console width has to fit 44 inches wide
                which is hard to find.



                Best of luck! I have always preferred Rodgers to Allen - Allens tend to
                sound tubby and to me are missing in the low frequencies. Not so with
                the older analog Rodgers.





                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Practice Organ: Rodgers C-505 or Allen 123-C, Advice please!

                  As in I don't have any money to spend. But thanks for the moment of
                  optimism!! Besides $, my console width has to fit 44 inches wide
                  which is hard to find.



                  Best of luck! I have always preferred Rodgers to Allen - Allens tend to
                  sound tubby and to me are missing in the low frequencies. Not so with
                  the older analog Rodgers.





                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Practice Organ: Rodgers C-505 or Allen 123-C, Advice please!



                    Thanks for the advice!</P>


                    Anyone out there have any experience with a digital 1984 Allen 125-RTC AC8621? (these are the numbers I got) In your opinion would it be smarter to get an '84 <U>digital</U> Allen or an older <U>analog</U> Rodgers (for sound quality)? Help me out here! [:^)]</P>

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Practice Organ: Rodgers C-505 or Allen 123-C, Advice please!



                      Can anyone tell me anything about this organ:
                      http://cgi.ebay.com/Baldwin-Electron...QQcmdZViewItem</P>


                      Or Baldwin organs in general?</P>


                      Thanks!</P>

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Practice Organ: Rodgers C-505 or Allen 123-C, Advice please!



                        Dear "pipeorganlover"--</P>


                        Regarding your last two posts: You are asking about an analog Rodgers versus an older digital Allen versus a newer digital Baldwin. Without being very familiar with any of these instruments, I would tend to choose the Allen based on personal preference. The Rodgers and Allen are probably better built consoles than the newer digital Baldwin. In the pictures, the Baldwin appears to not have a standard AGO pedal board. It might be a European model(?). I noticed that the Baldwin is in California. In choosing one of these three organs, you might want to actually take transportation costs into consideration as well. Sorry I am not able to offer more help than this. Good luck!</P>

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Allen ADC/123c

                          I have used an Allen ADC/123c for several years and -- with some user modifications (easy if you're slightly technically skilled and brave) it makes a fine practice instrument. You can add additional speakers to it and if you put a Lexicon LXP-1 reverb on it you will be amazed at how pleasant it is. If you've got some nice sounds on tone cards all the better (look for soft stops like an Erzahler or Aeoline ... the Gedackt "like specification" is also a good one to have as is the 8' Flauto Dolce). If you open up the back you can adjust the tremolo speed, some of the speech characteristics and so-forth. Use the volume pots on the two main amplifiers to balance the flutes against the strings/prinzipals and you will have a fine piece of practice machinery. Sorry, no MIDI.

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