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Thread: What's the difference between a Montre, an Open Diapason and a Principal stop?

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    pp Pianissimo Eddy67716's Avatar
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    What's the difference between a Montre, an Open Diapason and a Principal stop?

    Besides the Monte being more mellow and the Principal being brighter than the Open Diapason, What's the difference?

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    mf Mezzo-Forte m&m's's Avatar
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    2 members found this post helpful.
    You have already realized the voicing difference between the ranks you mentioned, but the answer goes further than that. The Montre is very much a part of French Romantic organ music, as it is part of the standard "four fonds" that is used so often in that music. The Open Diapason is a staple of English voicing, as the anchor for a Diapason Chorus, and of course was very much a part of American organ voicing from the mid 1800's through the middle of the 20th century. The Principal would be the foundation of the Principal Chorus in Baroque style music and voicing, where no member of the Chorus is more prominent than any other.
    Mike

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    fff Fortississimo davidecasteel's Avatar
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    1 members found this post helpful.
    In short: French, English, German. Three different schools of organ building.

    David

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    Moderator myorgan's Avatar
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    Also, Montre means to show in French. Therefore, the Montre pipes are usually found in the fašade of the organ (as are Open Diapasons & Prinzipals).

    Michael
    Way too many organs to list, but I do have 4 Allens:
    • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony)
    • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
    • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 4 Pianos

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    pp Pianissimo Eddy67716's Avatar
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    I do know the origins but I do want to know the differences between the pipes.

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    Moderator myorgan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eddy67716 View Post
    I do know the origins but I do want to know the differences between the pipes.
    From the descriptions, the Montre would be a larger scale than the Open Diapason, while the Prinzipal would be a smaller scale than the other two. The construction of the pipes may be different as well. A Prinzipal would possibly be made of spotted metal, whereas the Montre or Open Diapason could be constructed of (I think it's called) linen metal (thicker). Tin, zinc, and other alloys could be used as well. Everything that goes into pipe construction will make a difference in the sound: Cut up, toe hole, scale, nicking (or not), alloy, and many other variables will effect the tone.

    Other than discussing the general differences between the specific styles of building these pipes, any further discussion becomes academic and open to interpretation. To hear the differences by different builders, check this page: http://www.organstops.org/o/OpenDiapason.html.

    Michael
    Way too many organs to list, but I do have 4 Allens:
    • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony)
    • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
    • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 4 Pianos

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    ff Fortissimo toodles's Avatar
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    If you can find a copy of the Allen recording "Voicing", they give samples of Baroque principal, Montre, Open Diapason, and revival principal.

    I think Wicks also had a recording of different styles, but I suspect it might be really hard to locate a copy. The Allen recording is easily available.

    You can in the Allen recording, hear the shifting formants of the reeds on their MOS organs.

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    Moderator myorgan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by toodles View Post
    If you can find a copy of the Allen recording "Voicing", they give samples of Baroque principal, Montre, Open Diapason, and revival principal.
    Toodles,

    I'll have to check that out tonight. I have a copy of that recording (but a very bad stereo system, vintage '86). Maybe I can get a direct recording from the turntable to the computer.

    Michael
    Way too many organs to list, but I do have 4 Allens:
    • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony)
    • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
    • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 4 Pianos

  9. #9


    Quote Originally Posted by myorgan View Post
    Toodles,

    I'll have to check that out tonight. I have a copy of that recording (but a very bad stereo system, vintage '86). Maybe I can get a direct recording from the turntable to the computer.

    Michael
    thats how I do my archiving my records though my "The George Wright Sound" got stepped on and broke.

  10. #10
    ppp Pianississmo Al Offt's Avatar
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    Michael,
    When you say "Maybe I can get a direct recording from the turntable to the computer.", I'm not sure whether you mean it literally or figuratively. But just in case, you would need to put a pre-amplifier or some electronic device between the two since the output of the turntable would need RIAA equalization and amplification.

    I have converted a few Biggs organ records to digital form using Audacity software (its free). It captures recordings in a WAV format but can convert them to mp3, if you also download the mp3 plugin. Audacity can do an impressive job but if the record surface has scratches or is not 'smooth', requires a decent amount of time, on the average about 2 hours per side to record and process, in order to remove pops and filter out surface noise. There is a learning curve but the effort is worth it. Talking of old equipment, I put my 1974 Dynaco PAT-4 preamp between the turntable and computer.

    Good luck,
    Alan
    Alan

    Allen MOS-1, Model 120, Serial AC-440
    purchased in 1972

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