It is currently Thu Jun 04, 2020 9:03 am


should i buy this console?

Building organ consoles for use with Hauptwerk, adding MIDI to existing consoles, obtaining parts, ...
  • Author
  • Message
Offline

MikeDC

Member

  • Posts: 734
  • Joined: Sat Nov 13, 2010 4:15 pm
  • Location: Washington, D.C.

should i buy this console?

PostSun Mar 15, 2020 12:32 am

I have the opportunity to purchase a large 3-manual Allen ADC console (approx. 90 drawknobs) at an excellent price. Console is in good shape and organ plays.

I have no interest in retaining the Allen electronics and would do a full MIDI conversion.

My question is, is it worth it? I actually already have a MIDI-fied console, so I would either canabalize that for use in the Allen console, or buy new electronics for the Allen in hopes of selling it.

So, more specifically, how easy is it do a conversion on an Allen (are drawknobs from the 80's usable), and what's the market like for a console of this size that has been midified? Are churches the only potential customers?

Just intersted in the hive's opinions.

Thanks!
Offline
User avatar

organtechnology

Member

  • Posts: 1840
  • Joined: Sun Aug 02, 2009 5:58 pm
  • Location: DFW, TX USA

Re: should i buy this console?

PostSun Mar 15, 2020 1:21 am

MikeDC wrote:I have the opportunity to purchase a large 3-manual Allen ADC console (approx. 90 drawknobs) at an excellent price. Console is in good shape and organ plays.

I have no interest in retaining the Allen electronics and would do a full MIDI conversion.

My question is, is it worth it? I actually already have a MIDI-fied console, so I would either canabalize that for use in the Allen console, or buy new electronics for the Allen in hopes of selling it.

So, more specifically, how easy is it do a conversion on an Allen (are drawknobs from the 80's usable), and what's the market like for a console of this size that has been midified? Are churches the only potential customers?

Just intersted in the hive's opinions.

Thanks!


Hi Mike,

If the organ is more than 34" deep it probably needs a church home. If it is less than 34" deep it should fit through a normal front door to a house.

There a very few draw knob Hauptwerk organs out there because of the limitations they impose on how many different organs can be used. The number of draw knobs has to be >the number of draw knobs in the sample set.
It is also not trivial to setup Hauptwerk to manage the draw knobs and it requires a lot of extra wiring and additional power supplies. OpusII is one company that I know of that makes a draw knob based combination system that is compatible with Hauptwerk. I would guess it would be in the $50-$100 per draw knob to use them. As for input/output electronics to use 80s draw knobs, I would contact Jordan at Midi Boutique and send him the voltage, current and solenoid arrangement to get a suitable set of electronics to run them.

Hope this helps,

Thomas
Complete Hauptwerk™ systems using real wood consoles, PC or MAC Computer Sound MEngines, Dante Audio for Home or Church.
info (at) organtechnology.com http://www.organtechnology.com

Authorized Hauptwerk; Milan Digital Audio and Lavedar Audio reseller.
USA and Canada shipments only.
Offline

MikeDC

Member

  • Posts: 734
  • Joined: Sat Nov 13, 2010 4:15 pm
  • Location: Washington, D.C.

Re: should i buy this console?

PostSun Mar 15, 2020 9:49 am

organtechnology wrote:
MikeDC wrote:I have the opportunity to purchase a large 3-manual Allen ADC console (approx. 90 drawknobs) at an excellent price. Console is in good shape and organ plays.

I have no interest in retaining the Allen electronics and would do a full MIDI conversion.

My question is, is it worth it? I actually already have a MIDI-fied console, so I would either canabalize that for use in the Allen console, or buy new electronics for the Allen in hopes of selling it.

So, more specifically, how easy is it do a conversion on an Allen (are drawknobs from the 80's usable), and what's the market like for a console of this size that has been midified? Are churches the only potential customers?

Just intersted in the hive's opinions.

Thanks!


Hi Mike,

If the organ is more than 34" deep it probably needs a church home. If it is less than 34" deep it should fit through a normal front door to a house.

There a very few draw knob Hauptwerk organs out there because of the limitations they impose on how many different organs can be used. The number of draw knobs has to be >the number of draw knobs in the sample set.
It is also not trivial to setup Hauptwerk to manage the draw knobs and it requires a lot of extra wiring and additional power supplies. OpusII is one company that I know of that makes a draw knob based combination system that is compatible with Hauptwerk. I would guess it would be in the $50-$100 per draw knob to use them. As for input/output electronics to use 80s draw knobs, I would contact Jordan at Midi Boutique and send him the voltage, current and solenoid arrangement to get a suitable set of electronics to run them.

Hope this helps,

Thomas


Thank you Thomas. I got the electronics for my home console that I built from Jordan. He's great. I converted an old Rodgers and found that the old Reisner-style SAMs were so old and finicky that they could not reliably be converted.

I'm wondering if I did a full conversion, how difficult is to find a buyer for a Hauptwerk-ready console of this size?

Mike
Offline

jkinkennon

Member

  • Posts: 1100
  • Joined: Thu May 07, 2009 10:43 am
  • Location: Vancouver, WA

Re: should i buy this console?

PostTue Mar 17, 2020 3:56 pm

I will post some info here about adding MIDI to Allen organs as it seems there is some difficulty sending emails to me in this one particular case. Not sure why as I've been john@kinkennon.com forever. No need to warn me about the bots as my address is published a number of places.

It is extremely easy and cost effective to "midify" Allen consoles including the SAMs. Just reuse the existing capture power supply along with the driver boards that are attached to each drawknob or tab. This is the case for all but the very earliest MOS1 models and perhaps for later ADC models. If the organ has the capture power supply running at 45v or a little higher then this is the procedure. All of the white wires (SAMs status) are handled just like typical bus inputs with a pullup resistor to 5v. The green wires are TTL level logic to the driver boards so a +5v on the green wire tells the SAM to turn off and 0v tells the SAM to turn on. I run these output voltages through a 1k series resistor. With this method there is no need to modify SAMs, to provide a separate power supply, or to purchase expensive driver boards.

In theory almost any input and output boards could be made to work using conventional SPI chain ICs. The ONLY trick is to know which SAMs connect to which capture power supply outputs (four + coupler power) and when to send enabling signals to the four power supply inputs, N1 thru N4. Use an open collector output for those if you use a 3.3v encoder/decoder.

I have a design for the Teensy 3.6 that does all this in conjunction with a couple of GPIO boards. All is very affordable though right at the moment there are issues getting SMD boards assembled in China. It would be possible to order the PCBs here in the US if you have an inexpensive reflow soldering oven. No reason to spend more than $100 for an encoder ($30), a little motherboard (optional), and a pair of GPIO boards at less than $15 or so each.

I will be publishing updated info soon but if anyone wants Gerbers, schematics, or code I can make all of that available at no charge. It's a rock solid solution as good as anyone else produces in my opinion. Quite a number of my older encoders are in use for HW and I don't get complaints except that it takes a lot of hours to strip out the old Allen electronics and wire them up.
Offline

MikeDC

Member

  • Posts: 734
  • Joined: Sat Nov 13, 2010 4:15 pm
  • Location: Washington, D.C.

Re: should i buy this console?

PostTue Mar 17, 2020 7:58 pm

jkinkennon wrote:I will post some info here about adding MIDI to Allen organs as it seems there is some difficulty sending emails to me in this one particular case. Not sure why as I've been john@kinkennon.com forever. No need to warn me about the bots as my address is published a number of places.

I will be publishing updated info soon but if anyone wants Gerbers, schematics, or code I can make all of that available at no charge. It's a rock solid solution as good as anyone else produces in my opinion. Quite a number of my older encoders are in use for HW and I don't get complaints except that it takes a lot of hours to strip out the old Allen electronics and wire them up.



Thanks for this info, John. Does your solution provide full MIDI capability to the console while leaving all the original sound generating electronics in place? In other words am I keeping Allen AND adding full capability to run HW? Or does it assume the console has been gutted (with the exception of power supplies)?

Michael
Offline

jkinkennon

Member

  • Posts: 1100
  • Joined: Thu May 07, 2009 10:43 am
  • Location: Vancouver, WA

Re: should i buy this console?

PostWed Mar 18, 2020 12:55 pm

My method assumes that the console has been gutted. It would be easy enough to develop an encoder that would track matrix keyboards and generate MIDI keying data from the manuals, pedals, pistons, and stop inputs. The challenge would be to coordinate or switch between the Allen and HW capture systems as both would attempt to drive the stops and would not easily be kept in sync with each other.

If I had a working Allen console of the correct vintage it would be interesting to do the MIDI output part of such a project. I generally get free nonworking consoles and don't want to pay more than $500 for an older Allen console unless it has 80 or more SAMs so likely someone else would have to develop this.

Return to DIY organ consoles / MIDI

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests