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New Set Recommendations?

Existing and forthcoming Hauptwerk instruments, recommendations, ...
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Re: New Set Recommendations?

PostSat May 15, 2021 5:05 pm

Douglas Henn-Macrae
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Re: New Set Recommendations?

PostSat May 15, 2021 6:43 pm

Check out this recently released gem from Forest Pipes - the Kuhn organ at Sankt Arnual. It's not overly large but is cleverly designed. There's a French leaning in its tonal character. The sample quality is excellent and it fits comfortably into a 32GB RAM limit.



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Re: New Set Recommendations?

PostMon May 17, 2021 12:26 pm

I can vouch for Goerlitz. I don't have a lot of sample sets, but I do own Rotterdam (main organ), Haarlem St Bavo and Caen. Of those 3, I find that Goerlitz is probably the most versatile - it works with virtually any music. Although it is not a baroque instrument, baroque music sounds very well on it (in my opinion). The others each has some limitation which limits the genre of music. For example, Rotterdam does not have an oboe, and its strings are also limited. Caen is not really good for baroque and Haarlem lacks the romantic stops.

For Goerlitz, the only thing lacking is a dedicated chamade, but that can be overcome by taking one of the trumpets (say on the Oberwerk) and voicing it a lot louder. Alternatively, you can add a chamade division to the organ.




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Re: New Set Recommendations?

PostTue May 18, 2021 4:57 am


Just an added dimension.
Others have recommended some excellent sample sets. So many really good sets to choose from!!

To decide between similar excellent sets I would ask these questions..
1. How many channels do you want/need? 2,4,6 or 8?
2. How many notes are there on each keyboard? 48, 50, 54 or 61?
3. Do you want a realistic screen or simple screen, or both?
4. Does the set provide a beautiful 32ft bass?
5. Does the set come with a Crescendo?
6. Do you want tremolo ... recorded and artificial?
7. Do you want to be able to easily vary the volume of front, diffuse and rear channels?
8. Does the set come with specific IR?
9. Does the set provide a Temperament? (Some provide several.)
10. Does the set include a beautiful oboe, clarinet or something similar?
11. Can the set be used in other configurations and composites?

Happy decisions.
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Re: New Set Recommendations?

PostTue May 18, 2021 5:14 am

I have generally found myself enjoying medium-sized organs more than large ones, and an important factor is how well they are recorded; Sonus Paradisi and Organ Art Media rank very highly in that regard.

In my view the many historic instruments available are quite different from one another. Two of my favourites are Freiberg (Sonus Paradisi) and St Bavokerk, Haarlem (Voxus). Another one that I love is Poblet from Organ Art Media, though this loses a little clarity due to long reverberation - the recording position was perhaps a little far from the instrument for my taste. For English organs I would strongly recommend the relatively new Tickell instrument from St Mary-le-Bow (Lavender Audio) which extremely versatile, very well recorded and very beautiful.

With regard to Cavaille-Coll I have both Metz and Caen, but I generally find myself playing Caen much more. Still, I will be very interested to investigate Nancy when it comes out.

I am not familiar with romantic German instruments, however, which is where you seem to be leaning.

I think in your shoes I probably would use this opportunity to get an instrument that I would not otherwise be able to afford, but I would think about it very carefully, ideally listening to recordings of both the original instrument and the sampled version on Contrebombarde, and also if possible download a trial version to see whether you like the overall sound. I have made some expensive mistakes myself buying instruments that I hardly ever play.
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Re: New Set Recommendations?

PostTue May 18, 2021 2:26 pm

Thank you all for taking the time to respond to my question. I think Stephen (all such pertinent points, which I could easily answer) and Julian really hit the nail on the head in terms of what I was looking for, something special and something different to everything I currently have. The piano that was sold was once an 18th birthday present so I wanted to invest the money back into something equally significant. It's not often I'm able to spend that sum of money in one hit!

So, having done a lot of research and a lot of listening and secure in my mind that I wanted something with a German romantic twist, I download the demo for Goerlitz and I was sold. Despite the cavernous acoustics, there is an amazing clarity to the sound. I have a surround setup with four channels, and the warmth, space and presence were all extremely enjoyable. I slept on it, listened some more, looked at the alternatives, slept, listened some more and last night I ordered it through Douglas Henn-Macrae. The codes were deposited in my iLok and SP accounts less that 12-hours later (and at least 10 of those hours were non-working) which is amazing service. Thank you Douglas and Jiri.

I've downloaded all 57GB of installation files and it's now caching. Looking forward to trying it out shortly!

Thank you again for your input in helping me make this decision.
Best wishes,



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Re: New Set Recommendations?

PostSat May 22, 2021 3:31 pm

As for german romantic, the Buckow-Rieger of Komárom is really very interesting

Then listen to the demo "B-A-C-H (1ma versione)" from about 00:20. There you can hear problematic parts in the acoustics, which sound like bells.



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Re: New Set Recommendations?

PostThu Jun 10, 2021 10:41 am

voet wrote:I own all three E. M. Skinner sample sets from Evensong and my favorite is the 3 manual instrument in St. Mark's, in Glendale, California. I thought I would like the 4 manual Skinner at Immanuel Presbyterian better, but it does not sound as good, in my opinion. The St. Mark's instrument has nearly all of the E. M. Skinner trademark features and costst $150 USD less.



Just wondering if you'd be willing to expand a bit on the sound of the St. Mark's instrument and in what way you like it better? I've listened to the demos and it's a nice sounding instrument, but I'm curious as to in what way you like it better than the other Evensong Skinner offerings. Is it the acoustic, is it more clear sounding, more realistic sounding, or?

As for what to recommend...... I don't own a bunch of instruments, but I highly recommend the Armley Schulze and is the one I'm the most thankful for purchasing. It is by far my go to instrument and I find I use it 90% of the time over the others I have. Not that the others are worse or poorer sounding, it's just that the Armley Schulze kind of gives me everything I'm looking for in a well balanced and good sounding set. As I've said before, it's a great 'church' organ. The other thing I appreciate about it is it's a surround set with 2 perspectives of the front channels and depending on how you load it you can either use each perspective by themselves, or use them together and adjust things to your liking. AND, it doesn't require 'unobtanium' amounts of memory. :lol:


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