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First impression about Caen sample set

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First impression about Caen sample set

Postby David » Wed Oct 14, 2009 4:10 am

For a long time I have been in the incertitude about the Caen sample set and I was afraid
that it could be too dry for my taste.
I listen many demos but it was still difficult for me to make my opinion.
Moreover I thought that since I had the Metz it was not necessary to buy
an another sample set which would be almost the same.

Then I was told that even if Metz and Caen were both of exceptionnal quality they were still very different.

So finally I went on to buy Caen from Jiri : a total of 8 DVDs all installed in about 1 hour and 40 minutes.
I just laoded the wet version since I have only 8 Gb of memory. The first thing I done was to adjust the volume and brifgtness of the contrebombarde which I knew was not present enough.

I then went on to try some different registrations : I didn't expect what I heard :


the sounds are very detailled You can hear each of the different compositions of a pipe.
The reverberation is really there, you don't feel it's too dry at all, you are at the console in the abbaye.
The full tutti is very dense, very rich, profund, powerfull.
The volume amplitude between a soft bourdon and the full tutti appears to be very large.
A lot of reeds, they are "heavy", "rasping", "gravissimo" well, they are "Cavaillé-Coll".
No lack of brightness at all especially in the upper octave when using full tutti.

And this is the wet version, what it is with the surround must be spectacular.

David
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Re: First impression about Caen sample set

Postby Fazioli » Wed Oct 14, 2009 5:32 am

Good choice!
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Re: First impression about Caen sample set

Postby Antoni Scott » Wed Oct 14, 2009 6:46 am

I have both samples, the Metz extended and the Caen Surround. Your impressions are correct. The organs are quite "different" to play and are both quite spectacular. I especially like the "Surround" option which I think should be the direction all samplers take in the future.

My only criticism on the Metz is that the recording seems to be done from a greater distance from the pipes than the Caen, but this greater distance seems to enhance the ambience of the organ. Small stops like the Cor de Nuit, Quintaton, etc. seems to be lost. I brightened everything up by using the Hauptwerk option to increase stop "Brilliance" which helped a little but it introduced some hissing into the sound decay.

The Caen has a very similar stop specification and has been recorded from two separate locations. When loading the "Surround" samples thay are duplicate samples recorded from the "Rear" rather than the "Front". With this option available to you, you can adjust individual stops for more front and less rear, or more rear and less front, giving you a custom balance to satisfy your preference. The reverberation of the Caen is longer than the Metz which enhances it's fullness but the 32' Contre-Bombarde is disappointing.

I have all my organs loaded as Stand-Alone ( experimental voicing changes) as well as the Sequencing ( no changes made) option so that I can go back and forth to compare if my changes improved the sound for me. Very interesting.
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Re: First impression about Caen sample set

Postby JimB » Wed Oct 14, 2009 3:41 pm

My only criticism on the Metz is that the recording seems to be done from a greater distance from the pipes than the Caen, but this greater distance seems to enhance the ambience of the organ. Small stops like the Cor de Nuit, Quintaton, etc. seems to be lost.

How do the differences between recording close to the pipes or further away effect the sound as it is reproduced in a larger room like church? Does anyone have experience with using dry/wet/surround in a church? In my case it will be a room with little natural resonance.
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Re: First impression about Caen sample set

Postby Fazioli » Wed Oct 14, 2009 6:51 pm

Antoni Scott wrote:but the 32' Contre-Bombarde is disappointing.


That's a very easy thing to correct, even with the voicing screen of the organ self.
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Re: First impression about Caen sample set

Postby PeterB » Thu Oct 15, 2009 8:43 am

To "correct" the Contrebombarde 32' on the Caen CC, simply turn the brilliance setting down and the volume up. Fully.

The Caen organ was *not* sampled close up. I asked Jiri about this while I was working on the demos. The organ was reportedly sampled *farther* from the console than usual, the acoustics of the building being exceptionally clear.

It seems that when recording symphonic organs, the distance to the instrument and the amount of natural reverb in the signal is crucial. If very short notes are to sound good, the proportion of direct sound in the sound signal mustn't be too great, or release cross-fades become problematic. That's possibly why Brett prefers his organs a little wetter than many other sample set producers, I think.
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