Work Starts on a Hauptwerk Continuo Organ

Following a couple of serious sales enquires and many rental requests, we have started work on a prototype digital continuo organ. The design brief was simple.

  • 30″ keyboard height so it can be played whilst seated on a piano stool
  • Castors to facilitate mobility
  • Capacity for 2 X 8″ powered studio monitors
  • Minimal overall dimensions
  • Support for Fatar TP/60, 62, 63 etc and UHT keyboards – all velocity sensitive
  • Adjustable angle music desk
  • Draw stops with changeable nomenclature

There are many excellent sample sets available, notably the Prib and Claviorganum from Sonus Paradisi. Changing pitch, temperament and samples is simple using Hauptwerk.
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We are also working on some simple draw stops that will sit each side of the music desk. Obviously, they won’t be motorised and purists may chose not to fit thumb pistons.

Please note, the desk in the pictures is our standard non-adjustable desk. For pictures of the adjustable desk, see an earlier posting.
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2 M-Audio BX-8 D2 studio monitors have been temporarily fitted, there is plenty of room for a laptop, Mac Mini or Intel NUC etc.
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Access doors will be fitted to the kneeboard and oak-faced MDF lattice panels will be fitted front and back. However, any tracery design can be cut on our CNC router. The prototype has Birch ply top, bottom and sides, customer instruments will be made of oak.
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The instrument in the pictures is fitted with a 61 note compass Fatar TP/60LF keyboard. Customers will also have the choice of fitting a 54 note, velocity sensitive UHT keyboard with exotic wood sharps and naturals.

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The keyboard will retract for ease of storage and transport.

A taller design will be offered for organists who prefer to stand whilst playing.

Charterhouse Console

Our minimalist Charterhouse Console is proving to be very popular; it appeals to organists who want a price of elegant furniture rather a traditional box.

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Touch screens are attached using concealed adjustable mountings. On this instrument, the customer specified 20 Taylor brass toe pistons and 3 expression pedals.
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Cabling is routed through the rear legs eliminating clutter. A bench can be supplied with a leg profile that matches the console legs.
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The customer used a a Mac Mini was used with 2 M-Audio BX8 Carbon speakers connected directly to the headphone jack. This configuration works really well on a Mac.

One issue we had during installation was with the USB hub that was connected to the 2 Iiyama touch screens. The Mac Mini has USB 3 ports and connecting them to an non-powered USB 2 hub can yield some very strange behaviour and also generated significant audio interference.

Single Manual Continuo Keyboard

1M Continuo Keyboard

1M Continuo Keyboard

We have just complete a single manual keyboard for a customer who wanted a portable Hauptwerk-ready keyboard that can be used whilst seated or standing up.  A neat music desk has been designed that can be set at 3 angles and folds flat for ease of transportation.

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A Fatar TP/60LF keyboard and 11 thumb pistons were specified. Our velocity sensitive USB bus-powerd MIDI encoder was fitted which supports MIDI in and out (with merge) and the connection of up to 2 expression pedals.

Other keyboards could be specified such as Fatar TP64/LF with wood cores, Ebony naturals and Cherry sharps or keyboards from UHT for those who want the ultimate feel or maybe a shorter compass.

We are also planning to build mobile console to enclose a computer and 2 x 8″ studio monitors. Watch this space!

So if you conduct a choir, this could be a very useful continuo organ solution when used with a sample set such as the Prib Chamber Organ from Sonus Paradisi.