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Hammond organ choice

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  • Hammond organ choice


  • #2
    Welcome.
    I am not a classical player, but I would think that a spinet would not fit your needs due to limitations in both the keyboard and pedals.
    Down side is that the console needs more room for an external speaker (except the A100 series)

    I must preface this with the fact that location is a key factor in what is available to you and the cost of any Hammond.
    Where are you located?

    Also an important factor is what you are comfortable in doing to this organ on your own as far as maintenance and electronics work. Don't forget that these beauties have some age on them. Finding technicians can be challenging and expensive.


    The B3 is the most sought after Hammond, and as such the one with the highest dollar value attached to it.

    I do not know if percussion is a factor for your style of playing, but any model with a -3 (B3, C3, RT3) has percussion and will be more expensive.
    All these have the same guts as the B3, only the cabinet is different.
    The RT adds a 32 note pedalboard and a more sophisticated pedal sound. An RT is usually a good deal, because they are not in high demand.

    Any of the consoles with a B (B2, BC, BV) will be more $ due only to the cabinet style. People get these models and swap the insides from A100s and sell them as a B3.
    A100 is also a good deal sometimes, as these are normally found in Grandma's living room and when she passes on her grandkids just want it gone. They are usually gently played. The other bonus is that they have a built-in amp and speaker system so they do not need an external speaker unless you want to add it.

    My suggestion is to look for a console such as a C2.
    Older models like the CV and D are also normally pretty cheap because of the lack of demand. Flip side is that they can require more work to get them back into shape if they have been neglected.

    Now you have the speaker to consider...Leslie ot a Hammond Tone Cabinet?

    Bob
    In theory, there is no difference between theory and reality.
    In reality, there is.
    '54 C-2 & Pair of 122 Leslies
    H-324/Series 10 TC
    '35 Model A (Serial# 41) with a 21H
    Look at some of my rescues:
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/58226398@N03/albums

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    • #3
      Going from never playing, to playing that, is kind of a tall order. Granted it's not a difficult piece, but it isn't exactly beginner material.

      Comment


      • #4
        There are probably other brands of organs better suited to classical repertoire.

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks for all the feedback. I am located in Los Angeles so I should be able to find something. I do repair Vintage Stereo receivers but I’ve never worked with tube gear. Percussion would be a nice feature but only if I can afford it. I’m only 18 so I have a limited budget. Yeah I will have to look in to what speakers to get. Also I wouldn’t want to start out with playing that piece. I would work my way up to it. Can anyone point me towards a better suited organ for my needs or a different thread maybe?

          Comment


          • #6
            Answer this question and we'll be able to give you better advice.

            What kind(s) of music do you want to learn/play and which are the most important. OK, that's really two questions but you know what I mean.

            If the answer is anything other than jazz/rock/blues etc, then the B-3 is probably not your best choice. It will only ever sound like a Hammond. There are organs out there that sound very pipe-like for classical or theatre organ styles, some that are very orchestral with exceptionally realistic instrumental sounds for recreating the sound of a band or orchestra, some that sound like electronic organs and nothing else, and some that can do all of the above.

            Oh, third question. What's your budget? I know you said limited but give us a little idea. Great news is that, other than certain Hammond models, there are thousands of organs out there for free or very little money! Spend a bit more then 'very little' and you can get something very nice to match your requirements.
            It's not what you play. It's not how you play. It's the fact that you're playing that counts.

            New website now live - www.andrew-gilbert.com

            Current instruments: Roland Atelier AT900 Platinum Edition, Yamaha PSR-S970, Kawai K1m
            Retired Organs: Lots! Kawai SR6 x 2, Hammond L122, T402, T500 x 2, X5. Conn Martinique and 652. Gulbransen 2102 Pacemaker. Kimball Temptation.
            Retired Leslies, 147, 145 x 2, 760 x 2, 710, 415 x 2.
            Retired synths: Korg 700, Roland SH1000, Jen Superstringer, Kawai S100F, Kawai S100P, Kawai K1

            Comment


            • #7
              A Hammond isn't a terrible substitute for a pipe organ at home. If you're accustomed to working on solid state gear, an LSI Hammond is a perfect fit. You can get them for free any day of the week. These are great organs when they work, and they're easy to keep working.

              I only really have experience with the Concorde, which I would recommend. But there are a boatload of Auroras out there which are probably just as good. Elegantes are probably good too. I don't see those for sale or free very often though.

              Unfortunately from what I've found, other brands that you can find for free or next to free are not worth getting. For some reason you have to pay a lot more for an adequate organ that isn't a Hammond.

              Avoid spinets of all types, and organs with only one manual. If you're really up for a project, there are some really nice reed organs out there for next to nothing, in various states of disrepair.

              Comment


              • #8
                I would want to learn classical, some rock, and even something different like the Addams family theme song. Most likely I would want one that could do all of those things. My budget would be up to $500. Maybe more if it was really worth it.

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                • #9
                  Identifying Baldwin Organ model

                  Click image for larger version

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                  • Larry Wagoner+
                    Larry Wagoner+ commented
                    Editing a comment
                    That looks rather like my Baldwin 632.

                • #10
                  I can't get the picture to load in order to see it better. I'd say from what I can see that it likely has 2 manuals of 61 notes each and maybe a full AGO pedal set (32). The general shape looks like a church style console. If it works and is free, why not take it? You'll never find one cheaper.

                  David

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                  • #11
                    OK, if that's the order of preference, you need a console organ. 2 x 61 note manuals and at least 25 pedals. There are thousands out there and I have to disagree with KC9UDX here, a lot of the non Hammonds are very definitely worth getting and they don't cost more than a Hammond console would, quite the opposite in fact.

                    As well as the LSI Hammonds (do read through the dozens of threads about fixing them as KC9's comment "when they work" is a telling one!), you could consider Conn, Allen and Rodgers for classical, but they won't do much good for rock! Kawais like the DX1800 or SR7 will give you very good drawbar sounds, a built in leslie and lots of orchestral sounds. Something like a Roland FA1 or a Roland AT90 would cover all the genres you mention and more besides. You might not get the latter two for $500 but you wouldn't get a Hammond console either, other than an E100.

                    If you want to go the classic Hammond route and accept the fact that it won't make pipe organ sounds, but like it for the rock sounds etc, then an A100 is what you need. Same organ as a B-3 but internal amp and speakers and reverb too. If you're not already aware, part of that Hammond sound you probably have in your head is due to the Leslie speaker that usually goes with the organ. That will possibly cost you more than the organ.
                    It's not what you play. It's not how you play. It's the fact that you're playing that counts.

                    New website now live - www.andrew-gilbert.com

                    Current instruments: Roland Atelier AT900 Platinum Edition, Yamaha PSR-S970, Kawai K1m
                    Retired Organs: Lots! Kawai SR6 x 2, Hammond L122, T402, T500 x 2, X5. Conn Martinique and 652. Gulbransen 2102 Pacemaker. Kimball Temptation.
                    Retired Leslies, 147, 145 x 2, 760 x 2, 710, 415 x 2.
                    Retired synths: Korg 700, Roland SH1000, Jen Superstringer, Kawai S100F, Kawai S100P, Kawai K1

                    Comment


                    • #12
                      If it's working, it will do classical, but forget the rock! And the Adams family.

                      In view of this question and what you've said in the first thread, it's clear where your preferences lie, so I've moved this to the classical section, even though we're talking about Hammonds, Rolands etc.
                      It's not what you play. It's not how you play. It's the fact that you're playing that counts.

                      New website now live - www.andrew-gilbert.com

                      Current instruments: Roland Atelier AT900 Platinum Edition, Yamaha PSR-S970, Kawai K1m
                      Retired Organs: Lots! Kawai SR6 x 2, Hammond L122, T402, T500 x 2, X5. Conn Martinique and 652. Gulbransen 2102 Pacemaker. Kimball Temptation.
                      Retired Leslies, 147, 145 x 2, 760 x 2, 710, 415 x 2.
                      Retired synths: Korg 700, Roland SH1000, Jen Superstringer, Kawai S100F, Kawai S100P, Kawai K1

                      Comment


                      • #13
                        Originally posted by andyg View Post
                        There are thousands out there and I have to disagree with KC9UDX here, a lot of the non Hammonds are very definitely worth getting and they don't cost more than a Hammond console would, quite the opposite in fact.
                        This must be dependant on locale. I see a lot of Wurlitzers and unidentified spinets from the early solid state era (read 'junk') selling for $200 and up whilst Hammonds that don't start with A or B, or are called Aurora, tend to go for free. Ironically I never see the lousy sounding transistor Hammonds except in the trash. And I still can't figure out why Auroras go for big bucks.

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                        • #14
                          I think I’m going to take a look at the organ the guy want to give away. Is there anything I should check to make sure everything works and I won’t have to attempt major repairs? The church organ in question probably wouldn’t have any kind of percussion would it?

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                          • #15
                            1) check every stop, every function, every key and pedal. listen for unwanted hums and buzzes, and any other noises. Sniff for any unusual smells, like burning! If there's a problem, just walk away.

                            2) no, it won't have percussion
                            It's not what you play. It's not how you play. It's the fact that you're playing that counts.

                            New website now live - www.andrew-gilbert.com

                            Current instruments: Roland Atelier AT900 Platinum Edition, Yamaha PSR-S970, Kawai K1m
                            Retired Organs: Lots! Kawai SR6 x 2, Hammond L122, T402, T500 x 2, X5. Conn Martinique and 652. Gulbransen 2102 Pacemaker. Kimball Temptation.
                            Retired Leslies, 147, 145 x 2, 760 x 2, 710, 415 x 2.
                            Retired synths: Korg 700, Roland SH1000, Jen Superstringer, Kawai S100F, Kawai S100P, Kawai K1

                            Comment

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