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Thread: Tremulant speed & depth

  1. #1
    Midshipman, Forte
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Hamilton, OH

    Tremulant speed & depth

    I know this is largely a matter of taste, but what suggestions are there for depth and rate settings for trems - specifically for GrandOrgue, but really in general? I've seen rate settings in .organ files from as slow as 210 to as fast as 120, and depth from 12% to 40%. After playing around with them, I currently have mine set a 200/20 and they just don't sound "real." Any thoughts? [This is for a "church" organ, not a theatre organ.]


  2. #2
    Captain of Water Music
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Hi Bob,
    Classical organ tremulants seem to be quite varied, depending on the builder and the philosophy of the time... so this one is probably more 'personal taste' than anything else. When playing classical music I rarely use tremulants, even when playing 'real' pipe organs, so I have not invested much time in getting them sound 'right'.
    In the Theatre Organ world there seems to be two camps of thought when it comes to tremulants in virtual instruments - a) those who prefer synchronized trems (then the use of Low Frequency Oscillation, LFO, is preferred - this is what GrandOrgue is using), b) those who prefer sampled trems. Your classical taste may be in category 'b' too

  3. #3
    Commodore con Forza
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    As you may know, using trems all the time in church gets pretty wearing. Can you imagine playing Widor's Toccata with all the tremulants going?? Horrors!!!

    Let's face it -- on pipe organs you take what you get - they usually aren't adjustable. And on anything much above soft strings or flutes they are usually avoided. Once in a while you run into a special tremulant for the Vox Humana, but other than that, there's not much choice.

    You don't state what type of organ you are playing. But if you can set what you want, it must be electronic, and even there, that's unusual.

  4. #4
    Administrator Krummhorn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Tucson, Arizona
    Quite agree with above regarding pipe trems. I have two on my church Möller, one in each division. The Swell trem is pretty much useless except when using the reed stop for solo. The Great trem I had adjusted to the max amplitude possible - the only stop I use the trem on the Great for is a beautiful 4' Gedeckt (metal) in the high registers.

    Quote Originally Posted by dll927 View Post
    . . . Can you imagine playing Widor's Toccata with all the tremulants going?? Horrors!!!
    I was forced to do just that once for a wedding recessional ... on a Hammond, no less - couldn't turn the blinkin' vibs off ... It was ... horrible ... I washed my ears twice a day for a week after that episode.
    Kh ~~.

    Amateur musicians practice until they get it right ...
    fessional musicians practice until they can't get it wrong ...

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