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General Midi - Sound Canvas (GS) with Hauptwerk

Building organ consoles for use with Hauptwerk, adding MIDI to existing consoles, obtaining parts, ...

General Midi - Sound Canvas (GS) with Hauptwerk

Postby engrssc » Sat Aug 18, 2018 4:07 am

No doubt some have integrated external sound modules with a Hauptwerk organ. Currently the organist is looking for additional modern sounds (celesta for instance) to use with a classical VPO Hauptwerk instrument for use with more modern music. Any thoughts, experiences, recommendations - either plus or minus?

Control is one aspect. Sound selection? Expression? Adding MIDI stop tab(s)? Display(s)?

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Re: General Midi - Sound Canvas (GS) with Hauptwerk

Postby magnaton » Sat Aug 18, 2018 9:43 am

If you can find (eBay) an Allen MDS Expander II, it has a Celesta and other complimentary voices that would work for you. It has a Bugle which acts like a Tibia but for brass! The church where I sub at has one and I've used it to fatten up a Spanish style Trumpet located on a drawknob in the Choir. Being that this is a module for organs, the MIDI implementation allows for 4 voices to be assigned at a time (Pedal, Choir, Great, Swell). It has a large, handy volume knob for quick adjustments.

This unit was normally installed as a slide out drawer under the keydesk but they did make a self contained model that would sit on top of the console or elsewhere. Allen's revision of this unit is the "Ensemble". In typical Allen fashion they added a lot more voices (which sound really good) and features but kept the original voices sounding the same.

For being older technology the Expander II retains a high resale value.

Danny B.
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Re: General Midi - Sound Canvas (GS) with Hauptwerk

Postby jkinkennon » Sat Aug 18, 2018 12:27 pm

The Pianoteq software offers many possibilities besides just pianos. Tubular and church bells is a free add on. Packages with mallet instruments can be purchased as well as a harpsichord and others. I'm currently between consoles, but the previous four manual Rodgers had Pianoteq on one manual which was usable for a four manual organ sample set as well providing the MIDI for that manual was routed through Reaper or a MIDI router.

Most of us would put Pianoteq on the HW computer since it is relatively light on resource requirements. I currently have Pianoteq running on a Raspberry Pi 3B+ which can do the job with a few optimizations and a piggybacked sound module.
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