Saturday, June 18, 2011

Building a VPO console

For those of you that saw my VPO setup at MakerFaire North Carolina, I have added some links in the sidebar to VPO related sites and resources.

VPO software
If you want to try out VPO software without having to install software to your hard drive, I would try the jOrganPup distribution which boots from a USB key and runs on most PC hardware. It runs very well on older hardware.

The MidiTizer software is an emulation of a theater pipe organ. It is more complex than jOrgan Pup and is intended to run under Microsoft Windows. There is a version that runs in the WINE Windows emulator under Puppy Linux.

The Hauptwerk software is a commercial product that run on Mac OSX or Windows. There is substantial documentation on line. It will run in a limited "free mode" or with a license key. The free and purchased versions are the same...the USB license key activates the additional functionality.

VPO Hardware
M-Audio Keystation 61es - this is a semi-weighted keyboard which is often used in DIY organ consoles. I have been buying my 61es keyboards from Unique Squared, an eBay vendor that sells B-Stock keyboards that have minor blemishes (usually on the case and are fully guaranteed) for $124. Since I am removing them from the case, the blemishes are usually irrelevant. Brand new are about $170, so this saves about $50/keyboard. I have ordered 2 and they are both fine.

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