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Mander Organs
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emsgdh

"Organ" in King's College Chapel

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Nice one Choir_Man!

 

They seem not to have used multiplexed transmission for the voicing console, judging by the several multi-pin plugs each with its own fat cable. But this will make interfacing the console to a range of different organs more flexible, regardless of the type of transmission used by the instrument itself. And anyway, there's nothing wrong with conservative technology in general when it comes to organs. It has several advantages and it can be a sensible approach.

 

This sort of publicity can help promote the pipe organ by raising the profile of what goes on inside, something which I have found can stimulate the interest of today's younger tech-aware generation even if they are not particularly musical. I have an ordinary cheap and cheerful MIDI music keyboard sitting on a stand in my studio, just like those which pop bands use on stage. It's used for creating 'classical' digital organ sounds but in functional terms it's no different to H&H's voicing console in these clips. It's amazing how interested younger visitors are in this one item when they glimpse it while passing by the door - presumably because it provides an instant link to things they can relate to.

 

It's also amazing how little people in general, not just the younger ones, know about the organ, yet how interested they can become when their curiosity is aroused. A senior colleague some years ago, a physicist by background, once interrupted me when holding forth about organs. I had said something about moveable consoles and he couldn't understand how that could be done - he had never imagined there was any such thing as an electric action. Thereafter I had to spend ages describing almost every last detail of them! He was entranced, not to put too fine a point on it.

 

So H&H are to be congratulated for posting these fascinating videos. They can't but help enhance the profile of the instrument.

 

CEP

Quite a coincidence that you should post such a topic, Colin. Last Saturday I was at a dinner in Hull and one of my table neighbours and I were discussing the state of disrepair of the 104-stop F&A/Compton in the city’s Holy Trinity Church. Apart from tunings it’s not been overhauled in all its 78 years.

 

But as a layman, although university qualified in electronics, my neighbour had not the slightest idea of what might lay behind frontice pipes and how keys and stops transmitted to the organ although he realised electricity was the means.

 

As our conversation developed I found myself explaining the differences between flues and reeds, scaling and methods of tuning. Like you, I sent him some of the H&H videos and stills of what’s taking place at King’s. He’s amazed and keenly wishes us to continue the conversation the next time we’re likely to be dining together.

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