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    #16
    I'm working with a couple of churches who use the HymnSoft sequencer product when an organist isn't available. I'd rather that a good organist were at the console every Sunday and that churches were sufficiently appreciative of their musicians to ensure someone was present. Still, that is not always an option for small churches and I prefer to hear the traditional hymns even if there is an element of karaoke involved.
    http://www.kinkennon.com

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      #17
      My last church purchased a Rogers in 2006 with their own outboard floppy-disk sequencer. I used it several times a year to record anthems, because the (small!) choir sounded so much better when I was conducting in their faces. Other than that, yes, it is a great aid to playback pieces during practice. Could anyone recommend basic sequencing software for iOS? How would you connect an iPad with standard MIDI?
      Allen, circa 2006

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        #18
        I have begun playing at a church that has an Allen MDS-25. I would like to be able to connect my laptop to the MIDI and record using Sonar Cakewalk. However so far I have been unsuccessful. Does anyone have any tips or a template that would help? Thanks!

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          #19
          I suspect that your MDS-25 has the same issue as the MDS-45 at my church. If so, the only way to record to Cakewalk or any other sequencer is to physically block the MIDI couplers of all divisions in the "on" position (I used masking tape). If yours has the Console Controller, you can also go into the piston configuration mode on the console controller and take the MIDI couplers off the capture action so they will stay on all the time. A cruder way to do it is to pull the power plug off the back of the MIDI couplers so the capture action can't turn them off. (There are two plugs on the back of each tab, and the one you need to remove is the bottom one, best I recall. You'll know if you've done it right, if the cancel piston can't cancel the tab.)

          Anyway, if you'll block those couplers down or perhaps re-do all your combination settings so that the MIDI couplers are ON with every piston, you can then record to Cakewalk. The MIDI couplers don't have to ON when you play back your sequences though.

          Odd set of circumstances, and it was corrected once they provided a secondary MIDI OUT jack just for use with a sequencer. My R-230, which is about 10 years newer than either the MDS-25 or 45 at my church, has the second MIDI OUT jack, and I can record and play back without having to jump through any hoops.

          But once I get sequences recorded (which I do at home on the newer organ), they play back perfectly on the MDS-45 at church.
          John
          ----------
          Church: Allen MDS-45 with Allen MIDI-DIVISION-II expander
          Home: Allen Renaissance R-230 with expanded four-channel audio and MIDI-DIVISION-II
          Shop: Bunch of organs in varying conditions, some good, some not...
          Half of an incredible two-man organ service team -- servicing all the major digitals in Arkansas churches
          https://www.facebook.com/pages/Birds...97551893588434

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            #20
            Originally posted by jbird604 View Post
            But once I get sequences recorded (which I do at home on the newer organ), they play back perfectly on the MDS-45 at church.
            John,

            Including piston changes?

            Michael
            Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
            • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
            • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
            • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 4 Pianos

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              #21
              Yes. Interestingly, at least using the Allen "Smart Recorder" (I own two of them, and leave one connected at home and one at church). The recorder simply records whatever comes out on the MIDI stream, and for Allen organs the stream includes piston presses. When a piston press takes place, it apparently overrides any concurrent stop movements, so the only thing that counts is the piston press.

              Thus, at home and at church I have a "standard" set of piston registrations that I use for this purpose. I don't have to worry that the stoplists are not exactly the same, I just know that, for example, my intros are done with piston 10, the first stanza is played on piston 5, and the second stanza is normally played on piston 3. Then I make sure the pistons at church are set to the sound I want for each of the sections of the hymn, and the sequencer does the rest!

              (BTW I only record the intro and two stanzas of the hymn we are using for the processional, as that gives me plenty of time to get in with the choir and get my body on the bench. I have to start playing for real on the third stanza!)
              John
              ----------
              Church: Allen MDS-45 with Allen MIDI-DIVISION-II expander
              Home: Allen Renaissance R-230 with expanded four-channel audio and MIDI-DIVISION-II
              Shop: Bunch of organs in varying conditions, some good, some not...
              Half of an incredible two-man organ service team -- servicing all the major digitals in Arkansas churches
              https://www.facebook.com/pages/Birds...97551893588434

              Comment


                #22
                Originally posted by jbird604 View Post
                Thus, at home and at church I have a "standard" set of piston registrations that I use for this purpose. I don't have to worry that the stoplists are not exactly the same, I just know that, for example, my intros are done with piston 10, the first stanza is played on piston 5, and the second stanza is normally played on piston 3. Then I make sure the pistons at church are set to the sound I want for each of the sections of the hymn, and the sequencer does the rest!
                John,

                For heaven's sake, don't ever make any stop changes on the pistons! That could spell disaster!

                Originally posted by jbird604 View Post
                (BTW I only record the intro and two stanzas of the hymn we are using for the processional, as that gives me plenty of time to get in with the choir and get my body on the bench. I have to start playing for real on the third stanza!)
                (As Michael sticks his slender foot out to trip John on the way by!) It could make for a good show!

                Michael
                Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
                • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
                • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
                • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 4 Pianos

                Comment


                  #23
                  It's a good thing you don't go to my church You'd be stepping on my robe or putting glue on the bench.

                  And I learned a long time ago from my sweet old Aunt Minnie and her daughter Yvonna not to mess with the pistons. I don't even know how to change them.

                  - - - Updated - - -

                  Y'all have fun now. I've got to hang up and get to church for an ENCHILADA SUPPER! Woohoo!
                  John
                  ----------
                  Church: Allen MDS-45 with Allen MIDI-DIVISION-II expander
                  Home: Allen Renaissance R-230 with expanded four-channel audio and MIDI-DIVISION-II
                  Shop: Bunch of organs in varying conditions, some good, some not...
                  Half of an incredible two-man organ service team -- servicing all the major digitals in Arkansas churches
                  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Birds...97551893588434

                  Comment


                    #24
                    Originally posted by jbird604 View Post
                    You'd be stepping on my robe or putting glue on the bench.
                    Glue? Nah. I'd just wax it so when you're in a hurry, you'd just slide off the end!

                    Seriously, it's great the sequencer/recorder works so well for you. I do wish it were available on the ADC. I'm not sure Admin's ADC MIDI card would provide the MDS or Renaissance capabilities. Otherwise, I'd bite.

                    Michael
                    Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
                    • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
                    • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
                    • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 4 Pianos

                    Comment


                      #25
                      I don't know how well the MOS and ADC retrofits work with sequencers. The main goal with most kits is to allow an Expander to be used with the organ. But there are kits that have connections for the expression LDR's and for the stops, and it's possible that these actually do send and receive the same data as MDS and Ren models, for full sequencing capability. I guess you'd have to talk to the people who sell them.

                      Actually, I wouldn't really have to have full sequencing capability to do what I do with the processional hymn. I could always set the expression where I want it (wide open for hymns) and pre-select the registrations, then just hit Play on the sequencer to start the hymn. But it is nice to have it able to do all that for me, and even to "press" a new piston just before I start playing manually, so I have nothing to think about except playing the notes when I get to my seat.
                      John
                      ----------
                      Church: Allen MDS-45 with Allen MIDI-DIVISION-II expander
                      Home: Allen Renaissance R-230 with expanded four-channel audio and MIDI-DIVISION-II
                      Shop: Bunch of organs in varying conditions, some good, some not...
                      Half of an incredible two-man organ service team -- servicing all the major digitals in Arkansas churches
                      https://www.facebook.com/pages/Birds...97551893588434

                      Comment


                        #26
                        So you're saying if the MIDI stops are 'on' then it will record my playing? Right now nothing gets captured except for the first piston press.

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                          #27
                          Yes, if your MDS-25 works the same way our MDS-45 works. The MIDI couplers for all three divisions MUST be blocked in the "on" position in order to record anything. Otherwise, as you note, the only thing that will get sent out on the MIDI stream will be piston presses.

                          The quick and dirty way to do it with your moving tab MDS-25 is to roll up wads of masking tape big enough to cram into the gap between the stop tongue and the rail above it. Turn each MIDI tab on and push a masking tape ball into the gap so the tab cannot return to the "off" position when you press cancel or any other piston. This will not harm the capture action in any way, it just prevents the MIDI tabs from cancelling.

                          Once you do that, you simply start a "new song" in Cakewalk/Sonar and make sure you are recording from whatever MIDI adapter you are using in between the computer and the organ. Hit record and then press a piston and take off playing. The program will record exactly what you do in detail -- every piston, every stop, every note, every movement of expression pedals, etc. Then play it back with the MIDI OUT of your computer connected to the MIDI IN of the organ, and you should get a perfect replica of your performance.

                          Stops will go up and down by themselves if you change registrations during recording. The expression pedals don't move of course, but the bar graph indicators on the organ will move up and down to indicate expression or crescendo movements, and the organ volume will change as expected.
                          John
                          ----------
                          Church: Allen MDS-45 with Allen MIDI-DIVISION-II expander
                          Home: Allen Renaissance R-230 with expanded four-channel audio and MIDI-DIVISION-II
                          Shop: Bunch of organs in varying conditions, some good, some not...
                          Half of an incredible two-man organ service team -- servicing all the major digitals in Arkansas churches
                          https://www.facebook.com/pages/Birds...97551893588434

                          Comment


                            #28
                            Originally posted by jbird604 View Post
                            Yes, if your MDS-25 works the same way our MDS-45 works. The MIDI couplers for all three divisions MUST be blocked in the "on" position in order to record anything. Otherwise, as you note, the only thing that will get sent out on the MIDI stream will be piston presses.
                            Thanks John! I'm getting closer to making it work with your help. Notes and stop changes are getting recorded but on playback I'm getting random ciphers that won't stop even after the sequence is finished playing.

                            Jerry

                            Comment


                              #29
                              Hmmm.... That's odd. Since I have an old Allen "Smart Recorder" at home and at church, I don't bother with using Cakewalk any more for recording organ. But I know that it works for a number of people I've dealt with. Even little old ladies who are afraid of computers!

                              There must be something that is generating these random "note on" messages without sending corresonding "note off" messages. Double check your connections everywhere -- the MIDI IN and OUT jacks on the organ, the USB adapter connections to the computer. Also, I did have one customer who was getting weird MIDI effects, and we finally figured out he had a bad MIDI cable. A faulty cable or bad plug on the end of one might at times let an "on" message through then fail to pass the "off" message at the end of the note, resulting in notes that stick on. So if snugging up the connections doesn't work, try different cables.

                              If none of that works, you might have a faulty USB adapter, or you might need a different Windows driver for the adapter. What you're experiencing is not normal, and Cakewalk is supposed to work flawlessly for this purpose. Compared to the complex sequencing that Cakewalk/Sonar is capable of, recording and playing back organ music is a "cakewalk" (I made a pun!)...
                              John
                              ----------
                              Church: Allen MDS-45 with Allen MIDI-DIVISION-II expander
                              Home: Allen Renaissance R-230 with expanded four-channel audio and MIDI-DIVISION-II
                              Shop: Bunch of organs in varying conditions, some good, some not...
                              Half of an incredible two-man organ service team -- servicing all the major digitals in Arkansas churches
                              https://www.facebook.com/pages/Birds...97551893588434

                              Comment


                                #30
                                There could be another explanation for what Jerry is experiencing. The swell pedal, if it uses a variable resistor of some kind, may be a bit dirty. Those random MIDI messages may stop if he moves the swell pedal to full-on.

                                John Reimer

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