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Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

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Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

Postby Antoni Scott » Mon Aug 20, 2018 9:24 am

Just returned from a week in Atlantic City after working on the Midmer-Losh. I was assisting expert voicer, Brandt Duudy in the voicing shop. The String stop from the Right Chamber Solo, the Viol 8' Voice # 68 on 20" wind was on the voicing machine when I arrived. The organ has reached approximately 50% completion as I write. An amazing feat in itself. There are still trays and trays of stops that need re-voicing and regulating after being cleaned and refurbished. The restoration is dependent totally on donations (hint, hint). Just imagine how this organ will sound when completed (scheduled completion date is 2023 dependent on funding. On Thursday we were treated to an amazing recital by Jonathan Bowen that utilized all the playable stops (200) in the Left and Right Chamber, and it is daunting to think that there are 249 to go !!!
That being said, I keep thinking how much it would take to sample this organ, and who would be willing to do it. Four hundred and forty-nine stops is a lot of data. Who would be willing to do it ?
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Re: Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

Postby engrssc » Mon Aug 20, 2018 11:04 am

And if it were ever sampled, what size computer (or computers) would be needed to play it? Well beyond my capacity. IMHO, something this large is best left as is, where is. Nothing electronic could begin to capture the essence. :roll:

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Re: Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

Postby RichardW » Mon Aug 20, 2018 12:05 pm

engrssc wrote:... what size computer (or computers) would be needed to play it?


By the time it is finished the computers might be affordable. My Hauptwerk PC has 32GBytes of RAM. Early computer prices had core memory at $1 per bit so my machine is $250,000,000,000 dollars worth! (Which was worth even more back then than it is now.)

Also, my first work computer was only 16kBytes and the keyboard was almost the size of a small piano. Now my HW PC keyboard, which also has a mouse pad and a built in laser pointer, will fit into my shirt pocket.

However, you might have a point. I don't think four speakers is going to be enough!

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Re: Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

Postby Marc Cerisier » Mon Aug 20, 2018 6:21 pm

It seems that for an organ of that magnitude, you'd about have to have a dedicated computer for each manual and the pedals. Pistons would be a problem, though, unless there could be some midi magic to send the signal to each one for the generals.
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Re: Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

Postby organtechnology » Mon Aug 20, 2018 6:24 pm

engrssc wrote:And if it were ever sampled, what size computer (or computers) would be needed to play it? Well beyond my capacity. IMHO, something this large is best left as is, where is. Nothing electronic could begin to capture the essence. :roll:

Rgd,
Ed


If my calculation are close a 12 core Xeon rig with 128GB of fast RAM should do it.
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Re: Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

Postby 1961TC4ME » Mon Aug 20, 2018 10:38 pm

Pick up a good used server and there you go. :wink:

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Re: Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

Postby seh52 » Tue Aug 21, 2018 10:49 am

The world's largest church pipe organ, at First Congregational Church in Los Angeles, has already been sampled and is available: https://www.clrresources.com/fccla-the-great-organs/ .

The Great Organs of First Church is an instrument appreciated by organ aficionados around the world for its complexity, grandeur, and remarkable sound. Comprised of several organs joined together, it is among the largest church pipe organs in the world, with 18,094 speaking pipes, 328 ranks, 15 divisions, and a total of 278 speaking stops.

My HP i7 computer with 24 GB RAM performs this huge "moist" sample set, so it seems that the Auditorium organ, if sampled dry, could be accessible to many of us. If sampled wet or surround, it would take enormous resources!
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Re: Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

Postby MrNhanduc » Fri Aug 24, 2018 9:37 am

I would think it doesn't make any sense at all to sample such an organ. When you use so many stops, you would need lots of speakers to get an acceptable sound (because honderd stops through 1 speaker will result in lots of interference?). So for 99,9% of Hauptwerk users this sampleset would not be interesting to play. Imagine how long it takes to learn to use all sounds correctly.

I hope sample producers will use their time to sample 'normal' organs that can be used at home with satisfaction and for a reasonable price.
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Re: Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

Postby 1961TC4ME » Fri Aug 24, 2018 11:14 am

MrNhanduc wrote:I would think it doesn't make any sense at all to sample such an organ. When you use so many stops, you would need lots of speakers to get an acceptable sound (because honderd stops through 1 speaker will result in lots of interference?). So for 99,9% of Hauptwerk users this sampleset would not be interesting to play. Imagine how long it takes to learn to use all sounds correctly.

I hope sample producers will use their time to sample 'normal' organs that can be used at home with satisfaction and for a reasonable price.


I agree. Although some may find having such large instruments at their disposal interesting and a challenge and or fun to play around with, and that's fine, for me somewhere in the range of 40 to 80 stops is where my interests lie and will represent most 'normal' instruments out there from good sized up to large cathedral organs. Beyond that for me gets overwhelming and you have to start looking at how exactly you'd use it and ask yourself if having all these stops is really necessary. I look at how the set was sampled, it's acoustics and overall sound and realism as much as anything in my decision making, not how many stops it has, that's lower on my list of wants. Then as mentioned is coming up with a sound system to support such a beast and make it sound good. I'd venture to guess such a large instrument would best be suited for a large room, lots of amps, and lots of channels and speakers to do it justice. If the instrument is sampled as most top shelf ones are these days it would take nearly unobtanium amounts of memory as even the good 50+ stop instruments now days gobble up 40+ GB of memory (Armley Schulze is a good example) unless you cut something somewhere like not loading all parts or perspectives of the instrument, loading 16 bit vs. a higher bit rate, implementing some type of truncating and so on. The day might come we can all enjoy these very large instruments and they will make sense. Unless you have an unlimited bank account just for Hauptwerk (I don't! :lol: ), I just don't see it working real well for most.

My 2-1/2 cents worth. :)

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Re: Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

Postby RichardW » Fri Aug 24, 2018 8:05 pm

1961TC4ME wrote:Beyond that for me gets overwhelming ...


Many years ago, I went to some kind of electronic organ show with my father. I think it was the Hammond organ demonstration area that had calculated how many years you would have to live to hear each sound the organ could make. They assumed that you would need to hear it for one second and I think they based it on a 40 hour week.

The number was written round the top of the room and covered two walls!

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Re: Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

Postby engrssc » Fri Aug 24, 2018 8:40 pm

Long live Hammonds where I took my first organ lessons. (Hammond Concert model, the one with the concave radiating pedal board). :wink:

Rgds,
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Re: Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

Postby stoverkid » Sat Aug 25, 2018 11:03 am

Yup,
Hammonds are still in regular service, in flyover country. Our sanctuary has only a piano and a (vacuum tube, 22 watt, oil cup) spinet, with 13 pedals and one set of drawbars. It's the music, not the instrument.

I have an AGO 3 manual console, converted to Hauptwerk, with a lot of speakers and a 12" 1000w sub, at home.
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Re: Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

Postby TheOrganDoc » Tue Aug 28, 2018 11:21 pm

The Entire Purpose of a Huge Pipe Organ, is to fill a HUGE Auditorium or Church, with sufficient sound to provide music to fill A "HUGE ROOM" ! ! !

Atlantic City's Midmer Losh Pipe Organ, Was Designed, to fill what I believe is the Worlds Largest Auditorium ! !

In order to fill our Living room with beautiful music, We do not require a HUGE Sampled Organ. What it really does need is a Very Realistic moderate size "Pipe Organ Sample set, a Console, The Hauptwerk Program, Quality Speakers, Amplifiers, and the required Interfaces. That alone is a difficult enough project. But will provide Us with amazing Music at Home !

A Hammond organ can provide lots of music, However nowhere near the sounds of a Pipe Organ, or A well built Sampled Pipe Organ ! ! ! :roll:

(BTW, There are Midi encoders, and Sample sets, that can be used to build a sampled Hammond, If one prefers that sort of Sound ?)

My choice if I wanted that sound would be to Buy a lightly used Hammond Organ, and a 122 Leslie ! that will cost Lots less than any Sampled Organ.
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Re: Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

Postby TheOrganDoc » Tue Aug 28, 2018 11:30 pm

MidiBoutique, Inc. sells specialised Midi encoders for use with the available B4, Hammond Sample set, for those that desire those sounds ! ! ! :roll:

1961TC4ME wrote:
MrNhanduc wrote:I would think it doesn't make any sense at all to sample such an organ. When you use so many stops, you would need lots of speakers to get an acceptable sound (because honderd stops through 1 speaker will result in lots of interference?). So for 99,9% of Hauptwerk users this sampleset would not be interesting to play. Imagine how long it takes to learn to use all sounds correctly.

I hope sample producers will use their time to sample 'normal' organs that can be used at home with satisfaction and for a reasonable price.


I agree. Although some may find having such large instruments at their disposal interesting and a challenge and or fun to play around with, and that's fine, for me somewhere in the range of 40 to 80 stops is where my interests lie and will represent most 'normal' instruments out there from good sized up to large cathedral organs. Beyond that for me gets overwhelming and you have to start looking at how exactly you'd use it and ask yourself if having all these stops is really necessary. I look at how the set was sampled, it's acoustics and overall sound and realism as much as anything in my decision making, not how many stops it has, that's lower on my list of wants. Then as mentioned is coming up with a sound system to support such a beast and make it sound good. I'd venture to guess such a large instrument would best be suited for a large room, lots of amps, and lots of channels and speakers to do it justice. If the instrument is sampled as most top shelf ones are these days it would take nearly unobtanium amounts of memory as even the good 50+ stop instruments now days gobble up 40+ GB of memory (Armley Schulze is a good example) unless you cut something somewhere like not loading all parts or perspectives of the instrument, loading 16 bit vs. a higher bit rate, implementing some type of truncating and so on. The day might come we can all enjoy these very large instruments and they will make sense. Unless you have an unlimited bank account just for Hauptwerk (I don't! :lol: ), I just don't see it working real well for most.

My 2-1/2 cents worth. :)

Marc
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Re: Computing needs for sampling World's Largest Organ

Postby Organorak » Mon Sep 03, 2018 7:14 pm

Given that First Congregational Church has 18,000 pipes and at 16bit mono can fit into 8GB apparently, why would you need any more than 16GB to play Atlantic City with its 30,000 plus pipes?

Amplification is a more serious consideration, as the organ has something like eight chambers around the hall and using expression pedals sound can be panned around the auditorium - most impressive!

The seven manual console is colossal but they managed to fit the entire organ into a smaller five manual console (that now stands in the entrance lobby to the hall) so maybe you could settle for five manuals.

The organ has some extraordinary features including pipes made of papier maché and of course the 64 foot reed. Having heard it in the flesh I can confirm that it's unsurprisingly rather like sitting next to a hovering helicopter.

I'm pleased to see that it's being restored at last and it has some unique sounds. But I still think I'd prefer the Armley sample set!
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