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Thread: question about organ

  1. #1
    Member fox_druid's Avatar
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    Default question about organ

    I am planning to learn organ, but I don't know which organ to choose.
    I don't know how many pedals I should have, 25 or 32?

    It's hard to find organ with 25 or more pedals here. If you know the series of yamaha (since the music shop here only deal with yamaha products) which has 25 or more pedals, please tell me. I hope it doesn't cost more than $3000. Thanks

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    Administrator Krummhorn's Avatar
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    Hi Fox_druid,

    For serious study, I would heartily recommend a two manual instrument with a full 32 note pedalboard. The 25 note pedalboards are not built to the same specifications as their 32 note counterparts - meaning the "sharps" are shorter in length and the spacing between the pedal notes are not the same. In the US, we call it AGO Spec - AGO meaning American Guild of Organists, a national group of organists who have standardized the way full size organs are built today in this country and in other places around the globe. I'm not sure what the "standard" is in Indonesia whether flat or concave (radiating) pedalboards are the most common and/or accepted.

    From what I can determine based upon a vast internet search, is that Yamaha does not make a 2 manual (61 notes each) 32 pedalboard organ. Most of what I noticed is that Yamaha caters mostly to "roadies", music group that travel and present concerts. You may be able to find a used digital keyboard of some sort, and then add a Midi 32 note pedalboard to it. There is a Canadian outfit (click here) that manufactures/sells 32 note Midi Pedalboards, and can ship to most anywhere around the globe.

    I have heard of other organists who have assembled, rather inexpensively, a "midi" organ using an old organ console, adding this midi pedalboard, and operating the entire system through their computer, amps and speakers. Whether or not this can be accomplished for under $3000 I am not certain.

    Here is another example of a practice organ with full 32 note (flat) pedalboard. Could be the kind of setup you might be seeking - at least as an idea, anyway.

    I will keep searching for additional information and relay it here as it becomes available.
    Kh
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  3. #3
    Senior Member Frasier's Avatar
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    Unfortunately I can't answer the question for Indonesia but if anyone in the UK is looking for an electronic (sampled) organ, Wyvern is a possibility but will cost upwards of £3000.

    Pedal boards come in 30 and 32 and a good range of stops is available even on the smaller instruments. In fact I'm told that you can specify alternative or extra stops if that is your wish. So if you like mutation stops (not to everyone's taste admittedly) they can swap one or two for unwanted stops.

    My interest arose because I might be in the market for one. Space means I'm restricted to 2 manuals but if I really decided to do some domestic rearranging I could probably get a 3-manual.

    I actually tried one of these instruments in a small chapel and liked the authenticity of the sound - no surprise because they are sampled from real pipes. The instrument has worked service free for 3 years now so I need to find out more in case something goes wrong. Unfortunately I'm no organist so pedalling meant touching in the tonic and dominant at this stage (or actually having to look)!!

    http://www.wyvernorgans.co.uk/product.asp?id=20

    I'd like a draw-stop instrument but these come at a premium so I may have to make do with tab stops.

  4. #4
    Member fox_druid's Avatar
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    Thanks for the reply, I feel enlighted

    From what I know, it seems that there's currently no standard in Indonesia for classical organ music. The church near my house has a German electronic organ with 20 note radiating pedalboard, while the church in the city center has yamaha electone with flat pedalboard. Because only few churces in bigger district has pipe organ, all the accompaniment for the choral music has been adjusted to the 13 note pedal by the Liturgical Music Center here, and as being the only organ music publisher here, they only publish pieces with no more than 20 note pedal (highest note of bass is G3). Of course it wouldn't be enough for some pieces, such as the BWV 538.

    Yesterday, while searching around on the yamaha dealer here, I found a 25 note electronic organ. What about this one? I hope this one would be enough for serious study. Here's the pic of the 20 noted one but is the same type :
    http://www.xs4all.nl/~wkoopman/elect...ils/el-100.htm

    It has 25 note flat pedalboard, and 2 manual. They don't have 32 note organ for sale, and even 25 is considered very rare. Mostly people only look for 13 note organ for crappy pop song. I thought 25 would be enough, seeing that only very few piece has D4-G4 for the pedal. But if it doesn't meet the requirement for serious classical study, I would consider having the 32 midi pedalboard.

    And about the pedalboard, I think that's a nice option. A pedalboard, 2 nice keyboards of any brand, and finally a bench! Is that all the requirement?

    It's very hard to find resource here. By the way, I'm currently a new organist and still learning with the 13 note pedal for simple choral piece.


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    Administrator Krummhorn's Avatar
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    You're welcome ...

    Looked at the Yamaha you mentioned with the link ... those pedals are quite short!!
    I'm having trouble visualizing how one would accomplish the pedal part in BWV 538 on those. If at all possible, and if you are serious about the organ, I would opt for the full length pedalboards, even if they are flat, but the wooden "keys" need to extend back under the bench - this is the only way feet crossing (in front and behind) can be accomplished with ease.

    The other thing I noticed was the offset manuals ... with the BWV 538 for example, you might run out of keys on either manual, since there is a manual switch required throughout that piece ... for most Bach literature, one needs 59 or 61 note keyboards, both positioned the same. In the one pictured, when you switched to the upper manual, you would most likely have to play an octave higher. During quick manual changes this could present a problem for some organists.

    If the 25 note organ you found has the longer pedals that extend under the bench, that may do nicely for you. Otherwise, it might be better to seek out a midi 32 note pedalboard, if you plan to pursue the organ further.

    Btw, the largest pipe organ I can find in Indonesia is in Jakarta, at Gereja Immanuel church which has a 22 rank (latest rebuild/additions by Flentrop in 1985), so I fully understand your plight, and the reasons of the publisher there on limiting their arrangements to what is readily available.
    Kh
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  6. #6
    Member fox_druid's Avatar
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    Well, I never thought of that before! I have just tried on my senior's yamaha electone pedal and realized that it's nearly impossible to have any crossover. And yes, all the thing you mentioned were right. It would be very hard to switch between manual quickly as needed such as for bwv 538, seeing that the manual on the electone is not positioned exactly below or above one another. The yamaha electone just couldn't accomodate all the requirement for classical study.

    I think I will look for another brand. I just found a bona fide musical instrument distributor on the capital city, and it would be easier to order from them. Now I just need to find the right series. If the cost doesn't differ too much, I prefer the all-in-one organ to the separate keyboard with pedalboard. Any recommendation for electronic organ that's no more than $3000?

  7. #7
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    Wow so much to learn about organ these days. I still have my 26-year old yamaha electone, I was 13 years old then when I started playing. It only has one full octave of pedals. I still play it today.

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