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Grade my self-test?

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  • samibe
    commented on 's reply
    Sounds good. I know the feeling.

    I got a diagram of the stop layout from the person I bought my organ from. So I made a copy of that and wrote down the pitches for each stop at middle C. It made it a lot easier to keep track of everything.

  • Vebo
    Samibe, I gave incorrect info on the celeste tuning in regards to what is affected. It's gonna take a bit of exploration to sort it out...stay tuned, I'm distracted with a million other things. Lol!

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  • Jay999
    commented on 's reply
    In Theatre organs, the Diaphone always appears in the bottom octave of the loudest Diapason stop. In most Wurlitzer organs, the Diaphone extended on up into the second octave of the 16' rank, usually about E or F or F#. If you played the 8' Diapason on the manual, the Diaphone would appear on the lowest octave around these same pitches.

    The 2' Piccolo and the 1' Fife can be either Flute or Tibia. The builder of the instrument chose which rank to pull these pitches from, according to the amount of "best blend" these stops created when playing an ensemble of 16 - 8 - 4 - 2 together. In modern "re-specified" theatre organs, the 2' Piccolo on the Great is usually a Flute, but on the Solo manual it is a Tibia.

  • myorgan
    commented on 's reply
    Just a quick confirmation that on Classical organs, Celeste stops are almost always (if not always) tuned sharp of the companion rank. The only exception for this rule on the Classical organ (that I'm aware of) is the Unda Maris. By its name, it indicates the companion rank is tuned flat (or under) the pitch.


  • samibe
    On the tibias between divisions, I was mainly asking if they sound the same timbre-wise. Making them the same volume-wise is as easy as turning up (or down) the volume for one (or two) of the channels on the amp. Alternatively, you could adjust the gain on a few of the TG cards in the cage.

    I was going to ask if you had done the same note and stop on different divisions test. It's kind of fun to mess around with. Mine does the same thing and I concluded the same thing (that the waves must be offset a bit depending on when I add the second note). Since the tibias on all my divisions are set to the same volume, I've been able to get a nearly double-volume and nearly complete cancellation a few times trying that test. I haven't noticed that happening when I'm playing, though.

    I didn't know that the piccolo and Fife were often extensions of the tibia rank. Thanks.

    Celestes. That's cool. My strings (on the Acc and Gt) also go flat. Apparently in the technical service manual and on classical organs the 'Celeste tuning' stop pushes the strings sharp instead. On my organ half of the stops are a little flat and the other half are a little sharp. When the 'Celeste tuning' tab is active all the flat stops move a bit flatter. All of the reeds (except the vox), strings, and 8' pedal stops go flat on my organ. That switches on my Solo division. I'm wondering if it switches on your orchestral division (strings on the rest of the organ and flutes on the orchestral division go flat but the flutes on the rest of the organ and the strings on the orchestral stay a bit sharp). Also, on my organ the Celeste effect stops at Tenor C (TC).

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  • samibe
    commented on 's reply
    Your organ is nearly identical to the Ped/Acc/Gt of my organ. Your Solo matches my Great, exactly. Our Acc divisions have many of the same stops. The only difference is the Ped is a 16' violone.

  • Vebo

    >>>- A diaphone is not a diapason.
    I know, but in this "experiment" I was looking to sort what stops I had into 16 bins/ranks if they were real pipes (as is stated on the brochure - remember, this is just for fun, discussion, and my edification)

    >>>I'd put the piccolo and fife with the other flutes (especially if they sound the same)
    I put them with the Tibias for 2 reasons: 1.) I've read somewhere that the upper 2' and 1' of "Tibia" can be called Piccolo and Fife, and are too small to be wooden. So they are just metal pipes whose pitch is too high to audibly express any of the harmonics of the Tibia anyhow, and are used to fill out the upper end of a Tibia ensemble as needed. And they are also basically the same build/construction of a flute at that pitch/size, but built so that the volume is in line with the Tibias, again so they can be used to flesh out the upper end of Tibia ensembles. 2.) All of my stops labeled Flute are on the floating ORCHESTRA division, whereas the Piccolo and Fife are on the SOLO division where the louder Tibias are*. (See my note on differing volume of my Tibias below).

    By the way, I left out two more stop tabs on the SOLO, Twelfth 2-2/3, and Tierce 1-3/5. I would put them in the same rank as the Piccolo and Fife - they have the same timbre. So I would also add them to the Tibia rank for the reasons listed above.

    >>>Any tibia stop on Gt/Acc/Ped sounds exactly the same as the other tibia stops on the Gt/Acc/Ped. Allen did some work to make sure that stops on different divisions that are supposed to be from the same rank don't get louder if they are coupled together.

    On my ADC 3500, the Tibias on the ACC sound at approximately half the volume of the Tibias on the SOLO. If played with the SOLO Tibias, the ACC Tibias don't produce a clear volume increase - at least on a single note. Instead, using the Tibia of equal pitch on both manuals, if I depress a note on SOLO, and then repeatedly press & release the same note on the ACC manual - the combined tone changes with each press and release, and kind of cycles through 3-4 slightly different timbres/volumes/sounds. I figured this was the tone generation waves being in/out of phase with each other differently on subsequent presses of the ACC note - but it could just be a malfunction - this instrument is about 35 years old! This timbre/tone cycling is not noticed when used in combination with other stops and in the normal course of playing music - it's just something a tech-dweeb would notice when trying to sort out the ranks as I was doing. LOL

    >>>The Solo stops are often softer than the rest of the organ. and the tibias should probably match between divisions. You might need to check the voicing.
    The SOLO division is notably louder across the entirety of the stops on my organ. When I play anything classical that is "grand," (think Bach Prelude/Toccata and Fugues etc) I have to use the louder Tibias filled in at multiple pithces usually in combination with some bold reeds on SOLO as if it were the GREAT manual, and the lower ACC division as the SWELL or ANTIPHONAL for softer contrast - if I need contrasting organs. If I'm playing straight hymns or the like - I use the Diapasons in the ACC division.

    >>>I have a couple of other questions: Does your 'Celeste Tuning' tab push stops further sharp or flat? Does it affect half of the organ stops or just the celeste stops?
    My Celeste Tuning (a yellow tab) pushes all my strings (read, all of my yellow tabs) a hair flat. It ONLY affects the strings (yellow tabs), and it affects ALL the strings (yellow tabs). And when I use it - there doesn't appear to be any string counterpart that stays on key - unless somewhere in the complex harmonics part of it is staying on key and my untrained ear is just focusing on the flat shift.

    I've added the Allen brochure as an attachment. It has the stop list and the feature list which I'm trying to use in this "experiment."

    Thanks again to all who are playing along!
    Attached Files

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  • samibe
    A few things (and hopefully I remember everything well enough):

    - A diaphone is not a diapason. It sounds somewhat like a diapason but it is somewhere between a flue and reed. It could possibly be counted as its own rank on your organ.
    - I'd put the piccolo and fife with the other flutes (especially if they sound the same).
    - I'd put all of the tibias together unless you can tell a difference in the tibre. (My Solo Tibias are distinctly different than the other Tibias on my organ.)
    - The string celestes are tricky because sometimes a celeste stop is counted as one rank with double pipes and sometimes it's counted as two ranks.
    - The Solo stops are often softer than the rest of the organ. and the tibias should probably match between divisions. You might need to check the voicing.

    On a regular unit organ (especially one where everything is in the same pipe chamber), there would only be one rank of Tibia, Vox Humana, Flute, Post Horn, Tuba, etc.
    On our organs (I have the 4500), Allen tried to make a unit organ (extended ranks that all similar stops pull from) from a straight organ (separate rank for each stop). They did this by reusing samples for stops that were supposed to come from the same rank. I have a Tibia Clausa 'rank' on the Gt/Acc/Ped that covers all of the Tibia stops on the Gt/Acc/Ped. Any tibia stop on Gt/Acc/Ped sounds exactly the same as the other tibia stops on the Gt/Acc/Ped. Allen did some work to make sure that stops on different divisions that are supposed to be from the same rank don't get louder if they are coupled together.

    You could do some testing to see which ranks seem to have the same timbre. As your organ is actually a straight organ, each of stops on the organ are generated separately (on various TG cage cards). It is possible that some stops that are supposed to sound like they are coming from the same rank (but generated on different TG cards) might sound a little different because the voicing might be set slightly different.

    I have a couple of other questions: Does your 'Celeste Tuning' tab push stops further sharp or flat? Does it affect half of the organ stops or just the celeste stops?

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  • Vebo
    Thanks for the feedback - I did have a mistake - Piccolo 2, Fife 1 (Acc) should be Piccolo 2, Fife 1 (Solo), but that wasn't in my sorting ranks - that was just making the wrong notation on location of the stops. =). I also noted the II on the Violas and understand on a pipe organ that indicates two ranks sounding, but wondered if it was just coupled to itself somehow with a harmonic or octave, so that the II indicated 2 "pipes" sounding instead of a full second rank (is this ever the case with II, III, IV, etc?). This is because the "Celeste Tuning" is a separate stop tab - and seems to detune all the strings slightly flat rather than add a detuned voice. Since it's electronic and the string section is so full of harmonics. it's hard for me to dissect by ear. And it's kinda moot because of the tricks the electronics allow. Electronics or not, the sorting of ranks is interesting to explore - helps me understand the real pipes better. Thanks again for playing along!
    Last edited by Vebo; 09-19-2019, 08:38 AM.

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  • andyg
    You're close, I think!

    If this were a pipe organ, the tibias would all be one rank, the fact that the solo tibias are louder than the accompaniment tibias is either by Allen's choice, or by subsequent request of the customer. They'd obviously be the same volume on a theatre pipe organ. You'd normally use the flute(s) and the Quintadena on the accompaniment rather than the tibias. Some organists do like to use tibias downstairs, and the electronics in the Allen let you adjust them to a lower volume so that they don't swamp the tibias you're using on the upper manual.

    On a larger pipe organ, you might well have two tibia ranks, one in each pipe chamber, but all the ones I've played like that, like the 4/25 Wurlitzer from a trip to London last week, now shown in my avatar, have had the tibias closely matched in volume.

    So if you have just one rank of tibias, that would leave you short of a rank, but look at your rank #13. The 'II' would indicate that this is a two-rank strings celeste voice and indeed the brochure states that the floating Orchestral division has celestes.

    And I should add the rider that with electronics, all bets are sometimes off when working out equivalent ranks as it's quite possible to have different voicings for a stop that appears on all the manuals. Even in the analogue days, Conn managed to put three different Vox Humana voicings on the 580 model.

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  • Vebo
    started a topic Grade my self-test?

    Grade my self-test?

    I've been studying unification of ranks, stops, voicing, etc. And I recently bought an Allen ADC 3500. The brochure lists it as "42 stops with 16 equivalent ranks." As a self-test, I tried to assign the various tabs to what I think may be the unified rank. I figured someone here in the TPO forum could grade my paper! I understand electronically, it's not the same...for instance, when I duplicate what should be the same "pipe" on different stops on different manuals/pedals, I do actually get a change in sound when played at the same time - but that's an electronics issue, which isn't at question. I'm just trying to learn the unification and families of pipes.

    I'm a little fuzzy on the Tibias, because I know that the Solo Tibias are much louder than the Acc Tibias...so those are probably two different ranks - so I probably missed matching a stop into a rank somewhere...? Or maybe the brochure is just fuzzy logic and no real way to match them up to what the brochure states?

    Anyway - this is just an exercise for fun...tell me how I did?

    Rank 1: Tuba 16 (Ped & Solo), Tuba Horn 8 (Ped), Tuba Horn 8 (Acc)
    Rank 2: Diaphone 16 (Ped), Diapason 8 (Ped and Acc), Octave 4
    Rank 3: Post Horn 16 (Solo), Post Horn 8 (Ped)
    Rank 4: Tibia Clausa 16, Tibia Clausa 8 (Ped)
    Rank 5: Cello 8 (Acc)
    Rank 6: Quintadena 8 (Acc)
    Rank 7: Vox Humana 8 (Acc)
    Rank 8: Violine 16 (solo), Salicional 8 (Solo), Salicet 4 (Solo)
    Rank 9: Krumet 8 (Solo)
    Rank 10: Sax 8 (Solo)
    Rank 11: Trumpet 8 (Solo)
    Rank 12: Oboe 8 (Solo)
    Rank 13: Bass Violes II 16, Violes d’Orch. II 8, Violes II 4 (Orch)
    Rank 14: Flute 8, Flute 4, Flute 2 2/3 (Orch)
    Rank 15 : Clarinet 8 (Orch)
    Rank 16: Tibia 8 (Acc), Tibia 8 (Solo), Tibia 4 (Acc), Tibia 4 (Solo), Piccolo 2, Fife 1 (Acc)
    Last edited by Vebo; 09-19-2019, 08:31 AM.