The samples are initially recorded in stereo approx. 5 meters out and 3.5 meters high in front of the main organ. Master recordings were done at 96kHz/24 bit to have enough latitude for later processing. The recordings were done using precision electret condenser microphones with an omnidirectional polar pattern. The samples are later processed with Noise Reduction software, and a lot of other utilities to make them behave and appear good. Great care has been taken to keep the ”soul” of the instruments.
Since the different organs had different spread and panning (including some rather odd ones!), the samples are repanned for C/C# spread based on a 4.5 meters wide facade at the widest. No two ranks have the same spread, so each note should have it’s unique stereo position. The Swell stereo is spread out on 2 meters at the max. The Mixture and Cymbel are kept in the original recorded Stereo.
The Klokkespill samples (Chimes) are based on the freely available Beiaard Gent samples, heavily massaged, and actually use just 5 samples, the rest is interpolated by Hauptwerk. They are mainly meant as a little gimmick – do not expect fantastic Chimes, especially not from the highest and lowest octave.
All organ samples are from organs made by now gone J. H. Jörgensen Orgelfabrik, a Norwegian organ building company, the leading builder in recent times. Founded in 1876, but closed in 1983, they built approximately 700 organs. Most are now slowly disappearing and are being replaced, but they do represent the typical sound of small/medium size Norwegian church organs.
A few ranks are partly regenerated (minor transposing) from other ranks, and the Principal 16 in the Hovedverk (Great) is also reused in the Pedals.
Some bad sounding notes were replaced by transposing neighbors, but I did not go to great lengths, so a lot of (mostly good and some not so good) personality remains. I felt that capturing the soul of the instrument(s) was more important than perfecting everything.
The samples are mostly retuned to concert pitch/equal temperament, but I have allowed a somewhat larger latitude than normal for the Hauptwerk tuning randomization feature such that it does not sound ”too perfect”.
The Erzhäler/Erzhäler Celeste ranks are 6.5 sharp Cents apart for making an undulating Celeste sound when played together. This means that the beating frequency will be slower at lower octaves, and then the beating speed increases more and more into the higher octaves. It is probably best noticed on the middle octaves. The Erzhäler Celeste can be used with other 8’ stops as well, but the effect will vary more with others. The Celeste 060-C is 1 Hz above the non-Celeste, the 072-C is 2 Hz above and the 084-C is 4 Hz above and so on, defining the undulating frequencies.
Dec 16th, 2011 – Version 0.99: We have selected to retune the Pedal Fagott 16′ lowest C and C# – they were a tad too much off.
Dec 19th, 2011 – Version 1.0: Released