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Allen recordings

Posted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 9:39 pm
by NoAllen
I have some recordings I made on my Allen Theatre III with their Smart Recorder. I don't have the organ or recorder anymore, but I have a lot of songs in MIDI saved on my computer. I tried playing one on the Miditzer. The whole keyboard flashed sort of rhythmically but nothing played. Is their any way to convert them to Miditzer?

Norm

Re: Allen recordings

Posted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 10:29 pm
by johnh
Yes, they can be converted. How much work is involved is another matter. A friend and I have developed software to make it easier it the number of files is large.

Re: Allen recordings

Posted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 11:48 pm
by NoAllen
John: Thanks for your reply. For a 5 minute song, what sort of time are we talking about? I presume there's a gazillion different commands that have to be given a different number, or something? Time is not really a problem with me if it's something I can do.

Re: Allen recordings

Posted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 12:02 am
by johnh
NoAllen wrote:For a 5 minute song, what sort of time are we talking about? I presume there's a gazillion different commands that have to be given a different number, or something? Time is not really a problem with me if it's something I can do.
For specifics I'd have to review my Allen notes but the first step is to get the MIDI channels for the note data set up correctly. You can do this using Cakewalk or a similar sequencer application. This is generally a one-one mapping and should be very easy to do. After doing this you should be able to play back the file with the Miditzer and set stops manually. As I recall the Allen uses NRPN data for stop changes. NRPNs are a specific type of MIDI message that are a little trickier to work with but it can be done. Since you no longer have the organ it may be tricky to figure out what maps to what. The alternative is to play back the MIDI file on the Miditzer and use the overdub feature to record new stop changes manually along with the MIDI file. You can search the forum for more info using this feature.

That's the high-level overview, if you have more specific questions as you get into it let us know.

Re: Allen recordings

Posted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 12:07 am
by Jim Henry
Another way to handle conversions is to play the original file through MIDI-OX and use the MIDI-OX remapping capability to translate on the fly to what the Miditzer needs. However, I think Allen uses SysEx messages for stop changes and I don't think MIDI-OX can easily remap those.

Re: Allen recordings

Posted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 12:44 am
by NoAllen
Thanks to you both. I'm new at this MIDI stuff so have a lot to learn. I'll get hold of Midi-Ox and look into Cakewalk. My son did a lot of MIDI stuff years ago so he may be able to help. I'll be in touch. Thanks again.

Re: Allen recordings

Posted: Wed Mar 23, 2011 10:57 am
by johnh
NoAllen wrote:Thanks to you both. I'm new at this MIDI stuff so have a lot to learn. I'll get hold of Midi-Ox and look into Cakewalk. My son did a lot of MIDI stuff years ago so he may be able to help. I'll be in touch. Thanks again.
Jim's idea of using Midi-OX is also a good approach. If you get it working for one file all the others should work as well. Best of luck.

Re: Allen recordings

Posted: Wed Jan 22, 2020 1:30 am
by ThomasBland
Allen does indeed use NRPN messages to set stops. Allen has a standard voice number list. Each stop change takes 3 messages. The stop's number is broken down into 2 7-bit numbers by dividing it by 128. The integer result is the MSB, sent using controller 98 and the remainder is the LSB, sent using controller 99. Following those 2 values, a message is sent to controller 6 to either turn on (127) or turn off (0).

To turn on the 8' Vox Humana (voice NRPN = 138) on the Great (classical models) or Accompaniment (theater models) division which is normally MIDI channel 2,first compute the MSB (1) and the LSB (10). The MIDI commands in hexadecimal would be:
B1 62 01
B1 63 0A
B1 06 7F

The standard NRPN voice list is available from select Allen owner manuals like the GW4's. If you didn't know, what voices your Allen organ has, you could do a systematic testing of all NRPNs from 0 to at least 300 for all the channels on your organ's divisions.

Re: Allen recordings

Posted: Mon Feb 03, 2020 8:26 am
by csw900
I see that the original posting is very old but Allen Theatre III organs are still quite popular and easly available second hand. If you, or anyone else, wants to play Allen midi files see below. I can work with, and make ANY Allen organ which uses midi and can make midi files.

You can use my eplayOrgan program both to directly play your Allen midi files and to automatically translate them to play on other organs (including Miditzer). Download from my website https://midimusic.github.io
Completely free to download and to use. Also no Ads. eplayOrgan already contains several Allen organs which you can try.

If you are using an old Allen organ (More than 5-10 years) you may have to make the organ before eplayOrgan can play the files. However if you can send me, by e-mail, a detailed list of stops, their NRPN's and midi channels used I can easily make the organ for you. eplayOrgan has been designed to make making new organs easy. I can make a new organ in an hour or two given all the necessary information. I will need a sample midi file to test the new organ.

csw900