Sampling My Organ

Posts 1 - 12 of 12
  1. 951439
    Evisma : Wed 15th Oct 2014 : 7 years ago

    I have a Lowery Magic Teenie Genie organ from the 1950's.

    I would like to record it and make it into MIDI files, so I can eventually play the 60 year old organ with my 2 month old MIDI keyboard controller.

    I understand that the sample's sound would be determined by the sound option switches on the organ itself, like flute, harpsichord, tremolo. I know these would not be able to change after the fact.

    My MIDI controller has CV/Gate for playing analog synths and such through the new controller, so I thought I may be able to hook up the organ to my controller's CV/Gate and play the organ's sounds with the keys of controller, reaching over and physically flipping switches on the organ to change the organ's sound, though still able to use the pitch-bend and mod wheels on the fly.

    Should I try to make samples from the organ using my DAW, or should I be trying to play the organ with the CV/Gate on the controller and use the controller's keys as "phantom" organ keys?

    Or does CV/Gate not work with old organs, just 80's and newer synths?

    Or do I have no idea what I'm talking about?

  2. 951439
    Evisma : Wed 15th Oct 2014 : 7 years ago

    Lost sight of my original intention here,...

    How do I turn recorded wav audio files into MIDI files for use in the MIDI "side-scroll grid"? I figured Studio One would have a way. I'm sure it's simple, but I must plead ignorance.


  3. 1201983
    RenzWilde : Thu 16th Oct 2014 : 7 years ago

    I knew a guy once who sampled his own organ.

  4. 951439
    Evisma : Thu 16th Oct 2014 : 7 years ago

    You are immensely helpful,... and clever.

    I can't afford to remove a rib, and I'm already about as gay with myself as I'm prepared to be. Gotta save some action for my 40's.

    I just figured there were a few folks on this site who would know the process of taking wav files they've recorded and playing it with MIDI. I hear live recorded sax samples used with MIDI. Just looking to find out how the wavs become used as an instrument controlled by MIDI.

  5. 1281572
    promenade2239 : Thu 16th Oct 2014 : 7 years ago

    You can download a free version of KOntakt Player here:

    Will see if I can find out how to create sampled based instruments only with Studio One.

  6. 951439
    Evisma : Thu 16th Oct 2014 : 7 years ago

    Well now, this is awesome. The youtube video was exactly what I was talking about. StudioOne comes with Kontakt, but I do not have a way to activate it. The free download should fix this issue. Very succinct and helpful. I hope I can get the process right.

    Also, the guy's voice in the video, I swear, calls me three times a week asking about magazine subscriptions, tropical vacations, my internet speed. His voice is intoxicating.

  7. 951439
    Evisma : Thu 16th Oct 2014 : 7 years ago

    It worked!!!

    Check out how much radio interference I'm getting. Pretty sure a guy is saying something like "Save! blablabla our customers blablabla. I'll need to do some shielding before I record the organ for sampling.

    Thank you very much Promenade. I was able to do exactly what I wanted in about 15 minutes of getting your help. The world needs more people like you, and RenzWilde too.


  8. 146059
    RayKoefoed : Thu 16th Oct 2014 : 7 years ago

    I don't know if I can be of much help here, or if I have any idea what I am talking about, or if I should be even trying, haha, but the idea of authentic notes being played through an old fashion organ is certainly interesting to me.

    As silly as it may sound, I personally would not shy away from good old soundfont tools for such a thing. Something such as this maybe?

    The notes individually recorded with a decent mic, in a room with the acoustics you like, from a position in the room you would want the notes to be heard from.

    In such a circumstance it would seem that the clean perfection of a direct interface with said organ wouldn't be what you wanted anyway, if I am not silly wrong, as there are so many easy options in various synths to reproduce such things.

    The down side is the learning curve of figuring out how to sustain loop segments of notes in a digital recreation, and how long to hold them in recording, and the more realistic the atmosphere the more difficult the ability to cleanly loop sustained segments will be. It is very hard, at best, to get any real instrument to sound genuine in any digital form due to subtle things like this.

    It seems to me it would be 100x easier for people to simply perfect and record a song, or segments of a song, with such an instrument in it's environment than it would be to try to digitally capture that sound of the instrument itself.

    A silly conclusion to maybe a useless reply.. The thing I don't like about digital music, even when I create it, is that it will always lack the real authentic sound of any genuine, crafted piece of musical equipment being played in real time by someone who genuinely knows what they are doing and feels what they are conveying.. If that makes sense..

  9. 951439
    Evisma : Thu 16th Oct 2014 : 7 years ago

    "it will always lack the real authentic sound of any genuine, crafted piece of musical equipment being played in real time by someone who genuinely knows what they are doing and feels what they are conveying.. If that makes sense.."

    It does, and I agree. The organ I have is very old and has multiple issues. Most of the pedal does not work, several tone switches make a serious pinging noise when activated, and it picks up radio better than my radio.

    I was really wanting to save it's sound before it dies,... and die it will. I'm realizing that the organ really doesn't sound too good when compared to newer stuff. It's not bad for a family-room gathering and sing-a-long, but those days are pretty much over. The organ made one family I know very happy for a long time. It's been a treat to mess with, but it may need to just be a toy instead of a recorded instrument.

    It was pretty neat to play a 60 year old organ through a few months old keyboard.

    Never heard of soundfont, I'll check it out. Thanks.

  10. 186161
    Spivkurl : Thu 16th Oct 2014 : 7 years ago

    Hey, sorry I didn't get in on this thread earlier!

    I LOVE sampling organs, though I don't usually dig too deep so far as to sample every key.

    I have a Gibson G-101 and a Baldwin Fanfare, as well as one of those electroacoustic sort of things that makes sound using air from a fan (which is the only one I've sampled every key of).

    An organ with an audio output is pretty easy to sample direct if you've got a good interface, and maybe a direct box (to get the gain at optimum levels). Trying different amplifiers is a nice way to get different tone shapes in your samples, but if your amplifier doesn't have a line output, then you may need to mic the amp. If your organ makes lots of noise and picks up radio frequencies, then some processing of the samples may be in order, depending on the severity... things like noise gates, noise removal plugins, or selective EQ'ing can help.

    The biggest thing to orient yourself with when sampling an organ (or pretty much any instrument for that matter) is creating sustain loop points. Zooming way in with your audio editor or sampling software is important. You want to look at the waveform and select at the same point in the repeating waveform for the start and end points. It's good to set your loop at a point near the zero mark. Also it's good to set them at a point where the waveform is heading down below the zero mark. You need to listen to the loop to make sure the one you've selected gives a good representation of the frequency spectrum of the sample, and does not introduce clicking or artifacts. Depending on the pitch, you may need to loop several wave repetitions or just one. To test the entire sample for playablility, you should be able to use your editors loop play functionality. Play in loop mode... it will play the attack (before the sustain loop), then it will loop the sustain, then when you turn off the loop play mode it should continue to play the release. If it all sounds good that way, it should sound good when played in a sampler with your MIDI keyboard.

    As far as playing your organ with the CV/gate output, I'm not sure. Does your organ have CV/gate inputs on it? Mine do not. I'm not sure if most vintage organs used the CV/gate system to control the sound generation. That's more for old synthesizers and modulars I think.

  11. 186161
    Spivkurl : Thu 16th Oct 2014 : 7 years ago

    Generally, if I want to sequence an organ sound rather than just playing it on the organ itself, I will record a nice sample of a key on the organ (direct or amped depending on the tone I want), then set up the loop points, then load that into any sampler software. It should sound pretty decent that way, especially if you are playing in a narrow range of keys. You may want to multi sample if you are intending to play a wider range on your MIDI keys, so it doesn't sound "stretchy".

    I totally understand wanting to preserve the sound for future use before the thing dies, as these vintage sounds are only going to become more useful and valuable in the future. Very cool thread! I hope you find my ideas useful!

  12. 672953
    Ozzz : Thu 16th Oct 2014 : 7 years ago

    Use Kontakt. You'll need a sound designer with programming knowledge to input sustains, staccatos, velocities, randoms notes, noises and so on, or maybe the internet can explain how that's done.

    Cheap and battered prehistoric piano from Gumtree, sampled and programmed Khaled A.

Posts 1 - 12 of 12

 ! You need to Log In or Register to post here.