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MMD > Archives > June 1998 > 1998.06.13 > 05Prev  Next

Electronic Fairground Organ
By Paul Allen

I was interested to hear from Robbie that Andy LaTorre has built a
similar organ to mine.  As requested here are a few more lines.

My organ also uses real percussion, only the organ tones are
electronic.  The percussion instruments are played by electromagnets,
I have used pipe organ pallet magnets for the glock.  Two in tandem for
each of the side drum beaters.  A home made giant solenoid type is used
for the bass drum, this is driven from a 120v dc supply to give the
required mechanical power.

The tone generators are Hartley oscillators which are arranged with an
appropriate wave shaper for the required voice.   Waveforms generated
are sine, half sine and sawtooth.

Organ specification as follows, using standard 48-key system

  22 8ft flutes.  The trumpet is borrowed from this rank on Forte.
  22 8ft violins 1
  22 8ft violins 2 tuned sharp of 1
  22 2 2/3ft
  44 note rank, can play at 8ft, 4ft and 2ft.  Flutes or violins can
  be produced.

  12 8ft flutes
  12 4ft flutes
  12 8ft violins on Forte

  8 16ft Bourdons.  16ft Trombone on Forte.
  8 8ft flutes
  8 4ft flutes

There are a total of 192 independent oscillators, attack times are
arranged as required, i.e., bass notes start slower than the higher
notes.  Only two voices are borrowed on Forte, a total of twelve 35-watt
amplifier and loudspeaker channels are used.  Speakers range from 15
inches down to 4 inches in size.  I have no idea how much the beast

Paul Allen

 [ 192 oscillators -- I'm impressed!  Ray DeVault, proprietor of
 [ Devtronix, advised me that the independent "free phase" oscillators
 [ yield a warmer and more natural sound than the ubiquitous master
 [ oscillator and divider chain.  As always, the challenge is to create
 [ a realistic sound of the violin pipe; DeVault said, "More filters!"
 [ Are recordings of your organ available?  -- Robbie

(Message sent Sat 13 Jun 1998, 21:21:52 GMT, from time zone GMT.)

Key Words in Subject:  Electronic, Fairground, Organ

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