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date: 11 December 2019

Johannus organlocked

  • Hugh Davies


An electronic organ developed by the Dutch designer and organist Johannus Versteegt and manufactured by Johannus Orgelbouw in Ede, near Amhem, since 1967. Versteegt had previously designed the original models of the electronic home organ manufactured by Eminent, Riha, and Viscount. Intended primarily for church use, the Johannus organ combines elements of 18th-century and modern tone qualities; the range of two- and three-manual models includes a couple of two-manual ‘positive’ organs. Some home organ models are also produced, as well as a few four-manual instruments.

From the early 1970s the Johannus organ used between one and seven master oscillators (c2 MHz) to generate sounds; each oscillator, using two stages of frequency division, successively produces the 12 semitones of the highest octave and all the lower octaves. Other features introduced in the 1970s and 80s included digital reverberation and electronic simulation of the ‘chiff’ transient attack found in flute stops on some pipe organs. The multiple loudspeaker systems have different frequency characteristics, and are mounted in cabinets whose appearance is modelled on a rank of organ pipes....

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