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Thread: Tallest pipe organ in PIPE SIZE?

  1. #1
    Lieutenant Commander, Concertmaster SilverLuna's Avatar
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    Question Tallest pipe organ in PIPE SIZE?

    Hi, pipe organ fans from all around the world!
    I'm a newbie, so glad to meet you all. ^^

    But I've been looking around the web trying to find the tallest pipe organ in the world, but i always come up with the Wanamaker organ in Philidelphia (sp?)!! I know it's the largest in ranks numbers (http://www.theatreorgans.com/laird/top.pipe.organs.html), but is there one with the tallest pipes? I hope i make sense D:

    Thank you for your time in helping me!
    ~Silver
    Last edited by SilverLuna; Aug-07-2009 at 03:17.

  2. #2
    Administrator Krummhorn's Avatar
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    64 feet. One such rank is the wood Contratrombone at Sydney Town Hall organ in Australia.

    Wanamaker organ does not have a 64' rank ... rather a 'resultant' that usually comprises two ranks, 32' and a 10 2/3' which play together.
    Kh ~~.
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    Lieutenant Commander, Concertmaster SilverLuna's Avatar
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    :O Ohh..... hehe I'm not a Wanamaker player, but that's good to know! Thanks!

  4. #4
    Administrator Krummhorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilverLuna View Post
    :O Ohh..... hehe I'm not a Wanamaker player, but that's good to know! Thanks!
    Regarding the Wanamaker, I haven't (yet) played it either. To date, the largest instrument I've ever played was the Mormon Tabernacle Organ back in the 70's. Another instrument I truly enjoyed playing was the 4 manual at St. Peter's in Rome while on tour there in 1992.
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  5. #5
    Commodore con Forza
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    Speaking of the MormonTabernacle organ, I once had a neighbor who had supposedly majored in organ. She said that on a visit to the Tabernacle, back in Alexander Schreiner's day, he let her try out the organ. She proceded to play "Twelfth Street Rag", and he was not appreciative.

    Interestingly, it was not until the 1989 or so updating that the organ had any reeds on the great division. Why that was, I don't know, but I have a stop list from before that, and there is not sign of any reed on the Great.

    As for such animals as Wanamaker, Cadet Chapel, or First Congregational L.A., I sometimes wonder what point there is to such huge instruments. Inevitably, there has to be a lot of repeat tone quality, even if it is in various divisions. And there is only so much you can play at one time without ruining every listener's hearing. I have been to FCCLA lots of times, and it doesn't take long before the place is shaking, and with that building, that takes some doing.

    Can you really hear a 64' pipe, or is it just there for reputation?

  6. #6
    Commodore con Forza
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    As far as I know, there are only two full-length 64' pipes in the world: the Contra-Trombone in the Sydney Town Hall (already mentioned by Krummhorn) and the Diaphone in the Atlantic City Convention Hall.

    Another question would be this: what would be the largest organ if you calculate the sum of the lengths of all of its pipes?

  7. #7
    Lieutenant Commander, Concertmaster SilverLuna's Avatar
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    About the MT organ-- I've seen that organ before, it's a great instrument! I play the organ in a Mormon church (even though I'm not Moromon, they're nice enough to let me play) also. But i really like the Hazel Wright organ at the Crystal Cathedral. Now THAT thing is huuuuuuuuuge D: and the sound is just amazing!! And it's located in 4 diffrent parts of the place!

    Ok, so 64' is the limit? Becase i saw a 'fake' joke on YouTube about a 128' stop?! But that would be utterly pointless and all you would here is throbs of air ging through it.. no sound D: But that's the part when you feel it. It also adds much greatness to full organ.
    Hey yeah that would be another great question-- lots and lots of reserch!
    Thanks everyone!
    ~Silver
    Last edited by SilverLuna; Aug-08-2009 at 00:34.

  8. #8
    Administrator Frederik Magle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dll927 View Post
    Can you really hear a 64' pipe, or is it just there for reputation?
    You can't hear the ground tone, on C it produces 8 Hz, and the lower limit for humans is 16-20Hz, so you may not even be able to hear the first harmonic. However, you will be able to hear higher harmonics - especially in a reed voice. But really, it's more about "feeling" than hearing. I haven't been to either Sydney Town Hall or Atlantic City yet, but I'm told from someone who visited AC you really can "feel" it, so I guess it has some use - at least in mammoth organs like that.

    Quote Originally Posted by SilverLuna View Post
    Ok, so 64' is the limit? Becase i saw a 'fake' joke on YouTube about a 128' stop?! But that would be utterly pointless and all you would here is throbs of air going through it.. no sound D: But that's the part when you feel it. It also adds much greatness to full organ.
    Hey yeah that would be another great question-- lots and lots of reserch!
    Thanks everyone!
    ~Silver
    A 128' pipe could be build, but as your say yourself it would be utterly pointless. A 64's ground tone is already at least one octave below the limit to what we can hear - so what matters is the feel. And I don't think a 128' will feel much better than a 64'

  9. #9
    Lieutenant Commander, Concertmaster SilverLuna's Avatar
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    That would also be a hunkin' huge pipe D:

  10. #10
    Commodore con Forza
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilverLuna View Post
    That would also be a hunkin' huge pipe D:
    Beauvais Cathedral would still be able to accomodate it (vertically, that is).

  11. #11
    Admiral of Fugues Contratrombone64's Avatar
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    Having played the Sydney Town Hall monster I agree, the lowest seven semitones (C to F#) are thunder rather than audible sound. And they do make a tremendous impression when coupled with the full organ ... not so nice when played alone
    I'm not an atheist and I don't think I can call myself a pantheist. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many different languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangement of the books but doesn't know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God.
    —Albert Einstein.

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    Lieutenant Commander, Concertmaster
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    To return to the question posed in this thread, the resonators of the Sydney 64' stop fold back once or twice, so that makes them irrelevant. However, the longest pipes in the imposing case are 32 feet long (plus a little), so that should be relevant.
    On the other hand, the Sydney case does not have departments mounted vertically in-line. While certainly high, the huge case is spread horizontally more than vertically.

    Analogicus

  13. #13
    Lieutenant Commander, Concertmaster SilverLuna's Avatar
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    Like Washington Cathedral's organ's Open Wood pipes. They're huuuuuge and they sit horizontally on the floor! :O I've never seen pipes they lay on the floor, obviously xP

    And that's cathedral must be quite huge.......... Oo

  14. #14
    Administrator Krummhorn's Avatar
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    Once was involved in removing an theater organ from an auditorium years ago. The 32' pedal pipes were horizontally mounted in the proscenium arch high above the stage. Made for a very time consuming task removing those.
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  15. #15
    Commander, Assistant Conductor tittualex's Avatar
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    Dear All,

    Hope you remember the post by Contratrombone........

    http://www.magle.dk/music-forums/825...simulated.html

    the simulated 128' pipes............

    Alex.

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