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Am I a fool for considering a Hammond xk3c?

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  • Am I a fool for considering a Hammond xk3c?

    As a non-pro casual player I've been going round and round about my rig. At home I'm all softsynths all the time so this is strictly for band use.

    I currently have a motif 6 (classic), currently on CL.

    I have a virus kb, can't be more pleased with it for what I use it for: Virtual Analog



    Part of me wants to dive into organ hard. I may be old but it's not too late! I can play a bit but I have no real technique, as I've never played much on a waterfall board and have never had drawbars. Sound-wise the motif can skate by as long as I'm careful not to abuse the fast leslie, which sounds awful...



    So I'm kicking around various ideas. Kurzweil pc3, nord electro, and now even the hammond xk1 and xk3c (seen both used for a good deal less than the nord electro 3). Another contender is the roland vr760--a buddy has one and he loves the feel as well as the sound, or even the roland vk8. I know some of those are heavy and bulky, and do nothing other than organ...but in the back of my mind is the realization that I am invested in softsynths anyway, and I could use those live now and in the future.

    I also am leaning toward getting the kurzweil as a motif replacement, and selling the virus and just using the kurzweil VA sounds. I'm mostly playing classic rock now and vintage keys and strings are used much more than synth.



    So really perhaps the feel of the board is the most important thing in the long run. With that in mind I have my doubts about the nord considering the $$. If the darn thing had at least rudimentary control over the samples, and/or one split it would be a no-brainer. I liked the xk3c's keys better than the nord for organ; soundwise they were both good. The xk3c just felt more like an organ if that means anything, and it looks cool!



    If I went with the xk1 or vk8 I could afford a strymon lex or ventilator if I didn't like the leslie. I'd prefer to keep things in the board but it's not really that much hassle. Yet another option would be pc3le6 and ventilator (since the leslie is one limitation of the le...)



    I think the most realistic do-everything setup with 2 boards--not keen on 3--would be kurzweil pc3 and nord electro/other clonewheel. If I get into a situation where more synths are needed than I can handle from just the kurzweil (can't imagine this) then the laptop/interface can come out....I guess....hell by that time maybe an ipad...



    Anyway, any thoughts on any of these organ clones would be welcome. Driving myself crazy here. It's mainly due to the "I've got one shot, got a raise and the wife is saying ok, buy something" syndrome. One shot, can't blow it!

  • #2
    My only thought on the xk3c is that after hearing Melvin Rhyne playing one youtube, I've been wanting one. I'm not exactly sure if it's a spot on clone of a Hammond B3, but I couldn't really care. It's a great sounding organ in its own right.
    Gear: Alchemy - Yamaha Mox6 - Roland Gaia - Plugiator - GSI Burn

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    • #3






      Quote Originally Posted by Strenge
      View Post



      Part of me wants to dive into organ hard.



      So I'm kicking around various ideas. Kurzweil pc3, nord electro, and now even the hammond xk1 and xk3c (seen both used for a good deal less than the nord electro 3).



      Another contender is the roland vr760--a buddy has one and he loves the feel as well as the sound, or even the roland vk8.



      I also am leaning toward getting the kurzweil as a motif replacement



      So really perhaps the feel of the board is the most important thing in the long run.



      Yet another option would be pc3le6 and ventilator (since the leslie is one limitation of the le...)



      I think the most realistic do-everything setup with 2 boards--not keen on 3--would be kurzweil pc3 and nord electro/other clonewheel. If I get into a situation where more synths are needed than I can handle from just the kurzweil (can't imagine this) then the laptop/interface can come out....I guess....



      hell by that time maybe an ipad...



      Driving myself crazy here.



      "I've got one shot, got a raise and the wife is saying ok, buy something" syndrome. One shot, can't blow it!




      I went through your post and highlighted your thoughts (above) which if you reread will point out that you are all over the place. What are your requirements for the board? Your title starts out that you want an xk3c. Then you're talking a motif replacement; then virtual analog synth; then you're talking about the feel of the keyboard. And finally you declare that you have one shot and can' t screw it up. I think until you really define your requirements you will screw it up. Based on what you wrote above I don't see how you could expect anyone to give you a good recommendation. If you want just an organ addition? Get an xk3c with a ventilator.
      '57 Hammond B3; '69 Hammond L100P; Hammond XM2/XMc2; '68 Leslie 122; Motion Sound Low Pro/Pro 3T; Neo Vent; Kurzweil PC3; Generalmusic Equinox 88 Pro and 76 key versions; Voce V5+; EV ELX112P; '67 Howard Combo Organ; http://www.dyinbreedband.webs.com

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      • #4
        ^ I definitely liked it. The price is good on a used one I've got my eye on. The downsides are weight/bulk and the fact that I can't make up my mind on whether my 2nd board can just be organ or needs to have other sounds...:P



        Opinions the leslie sim on the xk3c? I remember it being pretty good but I was most impressed with the feel of the thing.

        I'm pretty sure the leslie would be good enough for live, hell I make the motif work ok live lol! Not like I'm playing jazz or even blues for that matter....



        Edit: new post by Delaware Dave.



        You are absolutely correct, I am all over the place. It's due to me having been in multiple bands playing a range of styles, and wanting to be able to cover all of them! A little bourbon tonight doesn't help with focus ;-)

        I kind of clouded the issue with the virus, motif and VA talk. Essentially I need to be able to cover occasional analog parts and the kurzweil could likely do it. So we can put the non-organ board to the side, it will either be the motif, kurzweil or some other thing at some point!



        So I guess I'm looking for thoughts on organ-specific boards, starting with the xk3c compared to it's competitors in the 1000-1500 dollar ranged (used). I think in the end I'd be happy with electro 3/4d and the xk3c, not so sure about the vk8, vr760 or xk1. I need to get to the store and bang on the electro again, the action was a little stiff as I recall and I'm not positive I can warm up to it.



        Edit: I'll add one very specific question: any opinions on xk3c vs xk1+vent? Considering a couple used prices I see right now that would be a wash as far as price.



        Edit again! Been researching like crazy and I'm leaning toward an xk3c if the condition and price is right. I liked it and everyone else seems to like it as well. Worst case I can try to add a vent/lex later if I don't like the leslie, but I think it will be more than good enough! I don't mind the weight tooooo much as I'm a big guy and can tote it--but I wonder if that's too much weight for a 2nd tier. I currently have an onstage z-stand (very sturdy in general, not positive on the 2nd tier). Thinking ahead to possibly getting the weighted kurzweil for piano which would obviously be on the bottom tier...anyway last edit I promise.

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        • #5
          take a hard look at the roland VR700. Good action, real good organs sounds , real drawbars, and a full host of pianos , electric pianos, horns, strings, and a sound bank big enough to pretty well always find what you need. 76 keys, light enough to to haul around in a ata case with wheels and be easy. I dont feel short suited showing up to gig with out a second board.
          "you mess with him and you mess with the whole trailer park"

          Comment


          • #6






            Quote Originally Posted by TIMKEYS
            View Post

            take a hard look at the roland VR700. Good action, real good organs sounds , real drawbars, and a full host of pianos , electric pianos, horns, strings, and a sound bank big enough to pretty well always find what you need. 76 keys, light enough to to haul around in a ata case with wheels and be easy. I dont feel short suited showing up to gig with out a second board.




            The 760 (older version) is definitely on my short list. My buddy has it and I really like the feel and build. I'd consider the newer one also but it's a good bit more $$ and I'm not sure it's really much different. Thanks, appreciate all the replies!

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            • #7
              I have an additional question about any of these clonewheels: do any of them send midi from their drawbars/drawbuttons? As I mentioned, my first priority is feel, but I was thinking of using vb3/b4/whatever comes along in software down the road if it was in improvement in sound (not a given I realize). However, that would be very nice if you could control the software drawbars from the hardware. looks like the vr760 will not do this, and the xk3c's manual left me a bit confused on the issue.



              If they don't, not a show-stopper, just another feature to consider.

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              • #8
                is this any good for your needs?? has anyone played it ??



                http://www.roland.com/products/en/AT...Combo_AT-350C/
                Guess what? ! I have a Fever and the prescription is more cowbell !


                Moog Modular,B3 leslie,gran piano, GX1

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                • #9
                  ^ wow I'd not seen that before, thanks. that's probably overkill for me, I will still be using other boards for the other sounds so a single-tier organ is all I'm looking at. As it is the xk3c is pushing it a bit on bulk.

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                  • #10






                    Quote Originally Posted by minimoog
                    View Post

                    is this any good for your needs?? has anyone played it ??



                    http://www.roland.com/products/en/AT...Combo_AT-350C/




                    Very nice! She's a playa!



                    http://www.roland.com/video/page.cfm...2121670&page=1
                    "I remember when dubstep was just called "LFO-Locked-Filter-On-Square-Wave-Bass-Synth" in the '60s" - Alan Parsons

                    Kurzweil PC3♦Alesis Fusion 6HD♦Alesis Quadrasynth+Piano (3)♦Alesis QS7.1 (2)♦Alesis QSR♦ Alesis S4+♦Alesis DMPRO♦Evolution MK-461C♦Rhodes Mark II Stage 73♦Roland JX-8P♦Kawai K1 & K1m♦

                    Comment


                    • #11






                      Quote Originally Posted by Strenge
                      View Post

                      ^ wow I'd not seen that before, thanks. that's probably overkill for me, I will still be using other boards for the other sounds so a single-tier organ is all I'm looking at. As it is the xk3c is pushing it a bit on bulk.




                      Just my opinion, which don't mean squat, but the PC3 would seem to be the no-brainer.



                      If a monster workstation/synthesizer also has a monster clonewheel, why would you spend the same money on just a clonewheel?
                      "I remember when dubstep was just called "LFO-Locked-Filter-On-Square-Wave-Bass-Synth" in the '60s" - Alan Parsons

                      Kurzweil PC3♦Alesis Fusion 6HD♦Alesis Quadrasynth+Piano (3)♦Alesis QS7.1 (2)♦Alesis QSR♦ Alesis S4+♦Alesis DMPRO♦Evolution MK-461C♦Rhodes Mark II Stage 73♦Roland JX-8P♦Kawai K1 & K1m♦

                      Comment


                      • #12






                        Quote Originally Posted by Synthaholic
                        View Post

                        Just my opinion, which don't mean squat, but the PC3 would seem to be the no-brainer.



                        If a monster workstation/synthesizer also has a monster clonewheel, why would you spend the same money on just a clonewheel?




                        Actually I appreciate all replies...how else can I get more confused lol! Seriously many of you play a lot more than me and I appreciate the advice.



                        I do have my sights on a pc3. When the dust settles--at least for a time--I see a realistic rig of a kurzweil pc3 and a clonewheel. Actually depending on which has a better deal I could go in that direction first certainly and the pc3 organ would probably kill my motif's organ. I like having 2 boards for some gigs, but the pc3 could be a nice do-everything board for quick, small gigs.



                        I realize the pc3 organ can sound very good, and of course I could save up for a ventilator--but I'd like to dive in to organ in a way I never have. That means the waterfall keys, drawbars, chorus switches etc. It does seem a little nuts and certainly isn't required for what I'm doing in bands. But I read about people setting their tonewheel parameters on the xkc3 to match a certain hammond they've played and that just tickles some keyboard gene that's rarely been activated before I've had a number of synths through the years and these days use software for composing (my regular boards just sit in their cases)..but I could see myself sitting around playing with a clonewheel.



                        I do wish I could find out if any of these things send midi messages out when you move the drawbars. I'm not super hopeful, I've gotten confirmation that the vr760 won't do it. I bought a korg nano-control for use with my software organ but that's a pretty far cry from drawbars!

                        Comment


                        • #13






                          Quote Originally Posted by Strenge
                          View Post

                          The 760 (older version) is definitely on my short list. My buddy has it and I really like the feel and build. I'd consider the newer one also but it's a good bit more $$ and I'm not sure it's really much different. Thanks, appreciate all the replies!




                          I havent played the 760. I have a RD300sx stage piano that I bought new and wanted to have a second board for backup. I needed sounds like mexican accordian, steel drums etc. I like a one board rig. I think roland does a good job of keeping things simple and building instruments that play well. Their stock sounds rock.
                          "you mess with him and you mess with the whole trailer park"

                          Comment


                          • #14






                            Quote Originally Posted by Strenge
                            View Post

                            I do wish I could find out if any of these things send midi messages out when you move the drawbars. I'm not super hopeful, I've gotten confirmation that the vr760 won't do it. I bought a korg nano-control for use with my software organ but that's a pretty far cry from drawbars!




                            The XK-3c does send drawbar data but Hammond does things a bit differently from how other companies control their drawbars. Hammond uses 3 CC #'s, 1 for each manual. For example they use CC80 for the upper manual with a range of 9 for each drawbar ie: 0 - 8 = 16'. 9 - 17 = 5 1/3' and so on. You would need software that can do that also or some software that can convert those messages to the way other companies do it. There is software that can convert the messages but I can't remember the link now.



                            IMO. if you want to play organ (rather than just organ sound), go for the XK-3c with an eye toward adding the lower manual and pedals at some point to build the complete System. A used XK-1 would be a close second although you can't add a matching second manual to it. Another option to consider might be the SK-2 which has two manuals and the option to play many other sounds along with the organ.

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                            • #15
                              Frankly I'm not sure I'll ever go with the lower manual...I realize that is part of playing organ though so never say never. I've got so much to learn just with one manual that I may never get that far! With that in mind I am definitely considering the xk1...I was not super-impressed with the leslie or the feel compared to the xk3c but the price is certainly lower, and it has advantages in weight and size. I just dislike needing pedals and extra stuff that is not self-contained, if I didn't I'd be busting out the laptop live!



                              So really with the xk1 I'm just a bit leery of the built-in leslie vs the xkc3 (a bit leery of that also). I'm not sure any stores around Orlando currently have either one. I could afford the ventilator if I got a used xk1 for sure though.



                              As far as midi messages, that is good news, might be possible then. I've worked with various midi utilities on both mac and pc (for transposition etc) although that does sound a bit different with value ranges within one cc...whether the mappings exist might come down to how many people ever needed to do it.



                              I made the decision to put my virus up for sale...so with luck it will be motif+virus exchanged for pc361/<organ>. No particular order, depends on which I find a good deal on first! Also depends on whether I can actually sell anything too....

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