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conn pipes on an allen

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  • conn pipes on an allen

    I'm brand new here, and may ask a question that has been answered before, but has anyone connected Conn "pipes" to an Allen theater organ? any benefits, detrimental reactions? I have an Allen 6 channel 317, and a set of the big conn pipes in the garage. Would there be any advantage to trying to connect them to any channel?

  • #2
    Tandy,

    Now, that brings back memories! Try checking some of these threads:
    You will need to search within those threads, but there is quite a bit of information there.

    On my ADC-5400 I tried the Conn Pipes on one of the antiphonal channels, but I suspect I should have run a large and a small set at the same time on that channel. My belief is that the larger set (because of their length) will only work on the lower half of the keyboard, whereas, the smaller set will work best on the upper half of the keyboard. I could be wrong, but that was discussed in a thread here at one point. I do know they won't support Pedal channels very well.

    Hope that helps you make the decision. Meanwhile, wait a while, and those who have tried them more extensively can weigh in.

    BTW, welcome to the Forum! I hope you continue to participate here.

    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)
    • 11 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 7 Pianos

    Comment


    • #3
      Though my experience is mostly with classical organs rather than theater, I've generally observed that there is some benefit to using the Conn pipes with an Allen organ. To be clear, adding almost any kind of external speaker system to an Allen with speakers only in the console is going to make it sound better, so the benefits I've heard derive not solely from the fact that I'm using Conn pipes, so much as just because they are external to the console and are directed upwards where the sound can bounce off the ceiling.

      A Conn pipe unit is basically just an 8 ohm speaker cabinet (or in the case of a couple models, 16 ohms), so no special adapter is needed to wire one directly to the audio output of an Allen amp. Or just wire it in parallel to the existing speaker, as long as you don't already have two speakers on one amp channel.

      In my own current home organ setup I have a modified set of Conn pipes in play. Whereas the stock Conn pipes are single-channel units, I removed the set of four original 6x9 speakers from the base and installed two separate systems, making it a "stereo" speaker unit. Each of the two separate systems consists of a 6" wide-range driver and a small horn tweeter. There is an appropriate crossover network as well which keeps bass frequencies out of the pipe unit completely, as they are handled by the organ's existing internal speakers.

      A quick and easy way to modify a set of Conn pipes for two-channel use would be to purchase a pair of small bookshelf or wall-mount speakers that will fit into the cavity of the pipe "chest" once you remove the existing 6x9 speakers, along with the baffle, leaving the box nearly empty. In fact, one could place FOUR smallish speakers in there and use them with a four-channel organ. (In my setup, I only needed the pipes to serve the two channels of the Great/Pedal division, as I have the swell audio going to a set of speakers in a different part of the room.)

      Just be aware that you probably should have additional speakers of some kind on any channel that you send to the pipes. As Michael mentions, they are not capable of enough bass output to handle pedal channels, or even, for that matter, manual channels with heavy bass content, unless there is a separate woofer cabinet on the same channel. A crossover network must be provided to keep the bass out of the pipes, of course, if connecting them to a channel that carries bass.

      That caveat might not apply if you attach the Conn pipes to an audio channel that carries no heavy bass. I'd think the four heavy duty 6x9 stock speakers would be hefty enough for most organ audio other than pedal bass channels.

      All that aside, if you only wish to experiment with adding some Conn pipes to one of your channels, without modifying the Conn pipes in any way, you only have to decide which channel to use. The 317 model was built, best I can determine, with both MDS and, later, Renaissance technology. I don't know and don't have a chart to tell me what stops are in what channels. But you can use trial and error to determine which channels carry something that might benefit from the pipes, such as a loud reed stop. Then you can simply substitute the pipes for whatever speaker you have on that channel -- be it an HC-15 or HR-100 or -200 -- as long as it doesn't have to handle much bass.

      You may find that the pipes are somewhat softer than the Allen speaker, so you'll need to adjust the amplifier channel upward a tad to compensate. Otherwise the stops coming out will be too soft compared to the rest of the organ.
      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


      • #4
        Quite a few people have re-speakered Conn pipe sets, sometimes out of necessity as speakers have failed or decayed, and sometimes to achieve a different result, as John did. (That's the method I may use if I get around to putting a set of pipes on the opposite wall to my Roland, for reverb and/or 'surround sound', but I'll also have to install a small stereo amp into the bottom of the case.)

        For those who want to leave the pipes mono, but want a bit more low in the mid-range and maybe a bit more top, then 6"x9" co-axial car audio speakers seem to be the way to go. That way, you can get the power handling and impedance that you want with no issues.
        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 Genos, 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

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        • #5
          Note that it is very difficult to find 6x9 speakers of 8 ohms impedance--almost all 6x9's these days are intended for car use, and are of 4 Ohms impedance. That is not a particular problem, but just make sure your total load on the amplifier doesn't go below 4 Ohms.

          What this means, is that if the Conn pipes have two 6x9's, wire them in series rather than in parallel if you replace the drivers.

          Also, if you use coax speakers, you may need to make some crossover changes if they are used in series. Ideally, scrap the crossovers on the speakers, and design a crossover for the resulting series impedance. That is, for two in series--two low, two mid, and two high frequency sections for a 3-way speaker--you'll need to redesign the crossover for 8 Ohm impedances rather than 4 Ohm.

          I seriously doubt that for Conn pipe use, a 3-way car speaker is noticeably different than a 3-way. If I were rebuilding, I'd probably get the best one-way 6x9 I could find, and add independent tweeters, probably not going through the pipes. The reason is that while the pipes will diffuse the low and mid frequencies, they really aren't small enough in diameter to spread out the highest frequencies--and small tweeters really don't need that, today, since they have wide dispersion already.

          Comment


          • #6
            My suggestion would be to run your reverb (if in fact you are using reverb) return into a separate amp and then into the Conn pipes. This leaves your "dry" audio just for the Allen speakers. You can use your separate amp volume control(s) to get the "mix" just right.
            BTW I have rerstuffed all those Conn Speaker Pipes with high quality car audio 4way 6x9. Be prepared to do alittle modifications to the mounting board for those speakers though....you can go into my album and check it out.
            https://www.organforum.com/forums/album.php?albumid=160
            Attached Files

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Hamman View Post
              My suggestion would be to run your reverb (if in fact you are using reverb) return into a separate amp and then into the Conn pipes. This leaves your "dry" audio just for the Allen speakers. You can use your separate amp volume control(s) to get the "mix" just right.
              BTW I have rerstuffed all those Conn Speaker Pipes with high quality car audio 4way 6x9. Be prepared to do alittle modifications to the mounting board for those speakers though....you can go into my album and check it out.
              https://www.organforum.com/forums/album.php?albumid=160
              Hamman,

              I had never seen your album before. Thanks so much for sharing it! It is quite informative, and I appreciate that you took a photo not only of the speaker, but the box it came in so others can match what you obtained. I also found the information on series/parallel combination hookup for impedance reasons to be very helpful for me.

              Again, thanks so much.

              Michael

              P.S. Good to see you back on the Forum!
              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)
              • 11 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 7 Pianos

              Comment


              • #8
                I have no idea of the condition of the speakers in my sets of Conn pipes; I'm sure they need replacement. I blew the dirt and bugs out with relatively gentle air from the shop vac hooked up in reverse and pointed at the tops of the biggest pipes. Tried hooking up a couple of them and they make sound but did not do any definitive testing. But before I open one set to mess around I thought I'd get some opinions on how much to spend on replacement speakers since 4 speakers times four cabinets = Lots of $ if you get carried away with the cost of the individual speakers.

                Following up on Toodles suggestion, I found "mid-range" single cone speakers from $35 each (Massive Audio M69C) to $300 a pair (Audiofrog GS-690) and a few in between. Some are even 8 Ohms. Clearly there is a point at which you are wasting money for this application. For those who used 2-way or 3-way speakers in their rebuild - would you do it again?

                How much were your raw speakers each? Is there something to be said for buying a speaker with a limited high frequency range since you are bouncing the highs off the ceiling after they travel through the pipes (resonators) and are not listening to them directly as you would a "normal" speaker? Has anyone tried a frequency sweep from an audio generator to critically listen to the acoustic output in the upper ranges?

                P.S. Hamman, that's a beautiful setup with your ADC-5300DK. How do you distribute the audio channels in the Conns?
                Larry is my name; Allen is an organ brand. Allen RMWTHEA.3 with RMI Electra-Piano; Allen 423-C+Gyro; Britson Opus OEM38; Steinway AR Duo-Art 7' grand piano, Mills Violano Virtuoso with MIDI; Hammond 9812H with roll player; Roland E-200; Mason&Hamlin AR Ampico grand piano, Allen ADC-5300-D with MIDI, Allen MADC-2110.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by AllenAnalog View Post

                  P.S. Hamman, that's a beautiful setup with your ADC-5300DK. How do you distribute the audio channels in the Conns?
                  I have a Harrison Labs mixer. I send the audio from the cage (6 channels) to the mixer. The mixer has direct outs on every input so I then run those 6 outs to the Allen amps. ( well one channel...the pedal great goes to a active crossover set at 100hz for the subwoofers.....so 7 channels of dry amplification) The mixer can/does mix down the 6 channel inputs to 2 stereo outputs. I send one stereo output to the input of my reverb....Alesis nanoverb. From there the "wet" mix output then goes to its own 2 channel amp where I have those Conn pipes hooked up (series/parallel)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by myorgan View Post
                    Hamman,

                    I had never seen your album before. Thanks so much for sharing it! It is quite informative, and I appreciate that you took a photo not only of the speaker, but the box it came in so others can match what you obtained. I also found the information on series/parallel combination hookup for impedance reasons to be very helpful for me.

                    Again, thanks so much.

                    Michael

                    P.S. Good to see you back on the Forum!
                    Thanks! I'm in the process of redoing my complete ADC 5300DK set up. I am in the beginning stages of adding Hauptwerk to my Allen. I decided to ditch the problematic Allen amps and go with some Behringer higher powered amps.....think headroom :-)
                    I will also be taking out the Harrison mixer....not that anything is wrong with it, and I'll be running all my audio through a Behringer digital mixer (X-32 rack).....including my Hauptwerk. I still will be using my 6 (12 doubled) speaker set up with the modified B-40's for subs. Conn pipes will still be in play as well but only for reverb return. BTW, currently when I set my reverb unit (Alesis Nanoverb) to only dry output and turn the gain up, I think those Conn pipes with the newer car audio 4way speakers sound just as good as the HC15's. I am currently seeking information on adding quality pots...linear or rotary for my Hauptwerk channels to be mounted to my expression shoes

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