Looking for recommendations on a digital organ with killer rock organ sounds.


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I am just a home hobbyist; already have an upright piano, also have a KORG Pa1000 arranger but not super-excited with it's organs.
Looking to add a board specializing in organs, specifically for that 70's rock organ sound as in Pink Floyd, Boston, Kansas etc...

Don't need it to try and be a piano, so I'm looking at waterfall keys. The Pa1000 covers most of the other sounds I use so non-organ sounds are not critical to me, but never hurts either.

Under consideration are the Crumar Mojo 61, Studiologic Numa Organ 2, Roland VR-730, Hammond SK1, Dexibell Combo J7, Vox Continental, and Nord Electro6D.

A big consideration is that I am not a techy, and the less tweaking the better for me. Less menus to go through the better. All knobs and dials would be wonderful!

So...how would you rank these boards in terms of their 1. ease of use/programming
2. sound quality
3. keyboard feel/playability

Money is not the deciding factor but is always somewhere in the equation (ie. for half the price is the Studiologic only half as good or a worthy contender.)

I live 7hrs from the closest music store that carry any of these, so trying to do some homework ahead of time. I've listened to videos on line through my crappy computer sound, but would really appreciate the advice of people who have played these.
 
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I have a PA1000... I'd agree, the organ doesn't cut it. Not for the 70s classic/prog rock sounds.

Of those you mentioned, I think each choice has its own tradeoffs, which may or may not matter to you...

I haven't played or heard the Vox, but right off, I'd be concerned that it does not give you control over all the original Hammond parameters (it is missing percussion and C/V selectors). And of course, it doesn't have real drawbars, but the touchstrip approach looks kind of intriguing.

I was also intrigued by the motorized drawbars of the Dexibell, but the online demos' rotary effect sounded bad to me.

For 70s rock, I think Hammond SK1's overdrive is a weakness.

Roland lacks a way to make the drawbars instantly live and accurate to their current positions, which is the kind of thing that will matter to some people and not others. And compared to some of the others, some of the adjustments require a bit more menu diving. (I also don't like the feel/spacing of their drawbars, based on using the VR09. I haven't felt the action of the VR730 which has different keys.)

Nord's action is on the stiff side, and drawbar changes are not as audibly smooth as some others. I think jazz players tend not to like the Nord quite as much as some of the others, but for rock, I think it sounds good.

I think Mojo has the most tweakability, but it is done through a web-based editor which would be at odds with your "all knobs and dials" preference. Though once you have it set up the way you want, all the real-time playing adjustments are immediate from the front panel controls. (But that's really the case with most of them, I guess.) The Mojo organ is also available as a VST... you can download a demo version of its VB3 organ engine into your Mac or PC, play it from your PA1000, so you'll know exactly what it sounds like and how you can adjust it. If you love it, then you know you'll be happy with a Mojo61.

Personally, I mostly use the Nord Stage 3, which is very similar if not identical to the Electro 6 in its organ. I like the organ a lot, but I use it also because of everything else the board gives me. If I were buying for organ alone, I would probably lean toward Numa or Mojo, which also have reputation for having above average actions. (I've played the Numa and would agree.)

For those models which you may like except for the rotary and/or overdrive, there is also the possibility of adding a Neo Ventilator pedal to any of them, which can address that. In fact, putting that on your PA1000 could conceivably be the cheapest way to get close to what you're looking for.
 
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If you are willing to play organ from the arranger keyboard that you own perhaps an organ module might be more up your alley. You would then have less hardware to deal with (no 2nd keyboard), a more focused module that is just organ is usually a good bang for your buck. Ones to consider: Roland VK8m; Voce V5 with a Neo Ventilator for Leslie; the new Crumar Desktop; various VST plugins. These can also be moved to the next upgraded keyboard you may plan to purchase down the road.
 
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I have a PA1000... I'd agree, the organ doesn't cut it. Not for the 70s classic/prog rock sounds.

Of those you mentioned, I think each choice has its own tradeoffs, which may or may not matter to you...

I haven't played or heard the Vox, but right off, I'd be concerned that it does not give you control over all the original Hammond parameters (it is missing percussion and C/V selectors). And of course, it doesn't have real drawbars, but the touchstrip approach looks kind of intriguing.

I was also intrigued by the motorized drawbars of the Dexibell, but the online demos' rotary effect sounded bad to me.

For 70s rock, I think Hammond SK1's overdrive is a weakness.

Roland lacks a way to make the drawbars instantly live and accurate to their current positions, which is the kind of thing that will matter to some people and not others. And compared to some of the others, some of the adjustments require a bit more menu diving. (I also don't like the feel/spacing of their drawbars, based on using the VR09. I haven't felt the action of the VR730 which has different keys.)

Nord's action is on the stiff side, and drawbar changes are not as audibly smooth as some others. I think jazz players tend not to like the Nord quite as much as some of the others, but for rock, I think it sounds good.

I think Mojo has the most tweakability, but it is done through a web-based editor which would be at odds with your "all knobs and dials" preference. Though once you have it set up the way you want, all the real-time playing adjustments are immediate from the front panel controls. (But that's really the case with most of them, I guess.) The Mojo organ is also available as a VST... you can download a demo version of its VB3 organ engine into your Mac or PC, play it from your PA1000, so you'll know exactly what it sounds like and how you can adjust it. If you love it, then you know you'll be happy with a Mojo61.

Personally, I mostly use the Nord Stage 3, which is very similar if not identical to the Electro 6 in its organ. I like the organ a lot, but I use it also because of everything else the board gives me. If I were buying for organ alone, I would probably lean toward Numa or Mojo, which also have reputation for having above average actions. (I've played the Numa and would agree.)

For those models which you may like except for the rotary and/or overdrive, there is also the possibility of adding a Neo Ventilator pedal to any of them, which can address that. In fact, putting that on your PA1000 could conceivably be the cheapest way to get close to what you're looking for.
Awesome synopsis, thank-you so much! Lots to consider...
 
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SeaGtGruff

I meant to play that note!
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With Hammond organ simulations, getting the organ sounds right is just part of the battle. The other critical part is the Leslie rotary speaker simulation, including overdrive.
 
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Ferrofish is a decent option for its price (and it's controls can also be used to control a VST), but it's actual sounds aren't so great... I'm not sure it would be any better than what's already in the PA1000.
 
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The drawbars on the PA arrangers have received quite a few criticisms on the Korg forum, more related to the non drawbar controls than to the sounds themselves which most users seem happy with.

Hence the Ferrofish may be a cheaper option than a new organ keyboard which even then may well not provide the complete range of tones
 
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I noticed over the weekend that the IK Multimedia B-3X organ app for Ipad was reduced to $79.99 in the App Store . Its a lot for an app, however it sounds very realistic and has a good leslie sim included with the app. I think this app would be a possible solution for the original poster. I probably will put it on my Ipad Air 2 for rehearsal use. YMMV Don
 
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Of those you mentioned, the Roland VR730 would be my choice. Cheaper than a Nord, and I prefer the sounds in truth (though its close)

The other option is go for a module like the Legend EXP or new Mojo module and drive it from your Korg. Much cheaper, better sounds than most full blown boards as well (same engine as the Mojo and Legend full boards).
 
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Ferrofish is a decent option for its price (and it's controls can also be used to control a VST), but it's actual sounds aren't so great... I'm not sure it would be any better than what's already in the PA1000.
Ferrofish isnt worth considering. Both Legend EXP and Mojo module are FAR better sounding and not much more coin.
 

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