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C2 vs. C1 vs. XK-3c


Clifton

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Sorry if this has all asked before but I did search for it to not much avail.

 

Did some trio gigs on a C1 and it's pretty solid. Also played on a real B3 for the first time and realised what all the fuss is about, making me think an XK-3c system is the only serious way to go.

But then again either the Nord C1 or C2 is much easier on the back & wallet. How much of a difference is there between the 1 & 2? And then between the C2 & the XK-3c?

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So glad you asked this because I have been wondering the same thing too! I think from watching videos and reading that the XK is far more editable than the C2. Where as they might have the same things that you can edit, like key click for example, the XK will have far more tweak ability where as the C2 would just have "low, med, high." The double manual is nice and so is the red, but I don't know if it's worth losing the manual drawbars. I get the advantage of the digital ones, that they always show you what your settings are, but that's hardly a big deal. People have been playin B3's for years and they seem to be doing just fine with manual drawbars. I think sonically they both will sound comparable out of a Leslie but I think the Hammond will shine with the finer details. And the Xk has real tube overdrive. That's a big plus for me personally. At the end of the day either is a fine choice. I would go with the Hammond because you can get into the nitty gritty. And you also should keep in mind no two B3's are EXACTLY alike in sound either, so your personal sonic voice is limitless when you're voicing the digital version. I mean it's never gonna sound perfect, because its not a tonewheel organ. But if someone is going to be THAT picky they should just get a vintage hammond.
1974 Rhodes, CP70B, Polivoks, Dominion 1, Behringer D, Mother 32, DFAM, MS20 Mini, Folktek Mescaline, Nord Lead 2x, KArp Odyssey, Jv1080, Digitakt, Hydrasynth,
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I play in a jazz trio/quartet/etc.

 

I used to use a C1 but now use an XK3c(I sold my C1 in November). IMHO, I feel as if the XK3c sim is light years ahead of the C1. Bandmates, fans/listeners, etc all feel who have heard both say the XK3c has that warm, earthy, vintage, and rich tone rather than the C1.

 

Compared to a lot of the clones, they definitely got the drawbar situation right. The ventura's were shorter side and even the Key B Duo's weren't ratcheted. Obviously, the C1/C2 don't have drawbars....more on that down below.

 

There is more to carry but what you make up for it is in versatility. I use the XK3c as a single manual in conjunction w/ a piano (either a real piano or piano keyboard) with a jazz/soul singer. She loves the sound! Before, we'd only use piano. I tried to put my C1 on a grand piano once and it was too high w/ the dual manuals.

 

It is more to bring but PM me offline if you want to see how I roll in and out of a gig in one trip. :)

 

That being said, I liked the C1 when I had it. It sounded pretty good even w/ a Roland KC350 (!). I got used to the drawbars but HATED that they got washed out in the sun. I played in a bunch of jazz festivals this summer and on a few I had to shield the sun to move around drawbars. That was one the last straws to look for another option BTW. It is light but once you add in the protective case, maybe the stage legs, maybe the music rest, etc the weight starts to add up.

 

There are a lot of great clones out there. At NAMM, I tried the Roland models, the Ventura, the Key B Duo, the XK3c, C2, etc. All of them were great in their own ways.

 

I would try them all and see what works for you monetarily, sonically (are you gigging w/ a leslie!?), and what you can bring.

 

 

 

 

www.brianho.net

http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/brianho

www.youtube.com/brianhojazz

 

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The XK-3c is supremely tweakable. The Nord's are pretty much straight ahead, what you see is what you get boards. The XK-3c with the Pro lower manual weighs in at a grand total of 60lbs. That's both pieces together - separately they are much lighter of course. The XK-3c gives you the flexibility of using a single manual if need be. Beyond that, I think the raw tones (as there are a few different sets of tonewheels from which you can choose) of the XK are more pleasing to the ear then the Nord, and again, they are supremely tweakable. It's worth the money IMO.
A ROMpler is just a polyphonic turntable.
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I have gigged and recorded a lot with both a A100 through a 147 and a C1 through a leslie 330 (same speakers and crossover as a 147, but SS amp and in a short 760 style cab.) and I must say that I never even thought about finetuning the sound of the C1... It sounds sweet and blends with other instruments quite well and even though I would sometimes wish for a little more of this or a little less of that, it's exactly the same with the A100 setup. The draw buttons took me about two days of playing to get used to and I'm totally cool with them now, even though I'd choose drawbars over leds anytime.

 

What I'm trying to say is that if you wanna waste your time adjusting the keyklick, percussion decay time or whatever, go ahead ;-) I bet that if you had "the real deal" you'd just play it and wouldn't worry about the keyklick to much.

 

I haven't spent to much time with the XK3c, but I'm sure you'll get a smoking hammond sound out of that as well.

 

 

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Also played on a real B3 for the first time and realised what all the fuss is about,

 

My condolences. Now that you know what the fuss is all about, you are condemned to searching for the perfect clone for the rest of your life, just like us other organ freaks! :thu:

Moe

---

"I keep wanting to like it's sound, but every demo seems to demonstrate that it has the earth-shaking punch and peerless sonics of the Roland Gaia. " - Tusker

http://www.hotrodmotm.com

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I bet that if you had "the real deal" you'd just play it and wouldn't worry about the keyklick to much.

 

Good point. When you sit at a Hammond you just play and you don't worry if it has "that sound" I know that sounds weird because why wouldn't it? It's a Hammond. But if you think of it sonically you have a mental sonic image in your head of what a hammond sounds like. So you could sit at a real hammond and it may not perfectly match that personal sonic image you have.Maybe another real hammond would. Or maybe a C2 or Xk3c would. It's all according to taste.

 

I had a similar experience last year, I played my first Bosendorfer piano and now I am on a never ending trek to get that sound and touch. Unfortunately hardware DPs don't generall have a Bosendorfer patch. It's usually a Steinway or Yamaha, so I kind of have to make my own sound. Or just buy software but I don't want to lug a laptop everywhere.

 

Another alternative you could go for, if you can get your hands on it is the Hamichord. It looks and sounds amazing.

 

http://www.bgmi.it/?a=showproduct&b=1

1974 Rhodes, CP70B, Polivoks, Dominion 1, Behringer D, Mother 32, DFAM, MS20 Mini, Folktek Mescaline, Nord Lead 2x, KArp Odyssey, Jv1080, Digitakt, Hydrasynth,
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I bet that if you had "the real deal" you'd just play it and wouldn't worry about the keyklick to much.
Having played way more than my fair share of Hammonds, and having a relatively large percentage of them being unmaintained pieces of s#!t, I prefer the ability to make a reasonable emulation of the great Hammonds I have played. While I appreciate the Nord approach that this is the organ you get, deal with it, I've found over the years that I just don't care for their take on a Hammond tone. I like the flexibility the XK-3c provides to really let me dial in MY ideal Hammond sound, much like I can with EVB3 in Logic.
A ROMpler is just a polyphonic turntable.
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Owning both the real deal ('67 B-3 w/a pair of 122's) and a C-1 through a 2101 over a Yorkville Bloc 100K I'd have to say we're lucky we can nitpick over bars/buttons, tonewheel shadings/3 choices, etc. My Hammond hasn't been factory updated in 42 years and it sounds sweet. My C-1 went from OS1.04 to 1.12.....whoopie. The Nord fit my budget and my aching back, YMMV. Even a decent rompler will sound great through a Leslie or a Ventilator.....it all depends on you. If you're an organ player you'll make any of these choices work, but you have to be happy with your choice up front. Otherwise it'll be a dreary gig.

 

You owe it to yourself to try them all and then decide.......you're the one picking up the tab, after all.

 

Jake

1967 B-3 w/(2) 122's, Nord C1w/Leslie 2101 top, Nord PedalKeys 27, Nord Electro 4D, IK B3X, QSC K12.2, Yamaha reface YC+CS+CP

 

"It needs a Hammond"

 

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Hey everyone thanks for the input, don't know if it's help my decision much though! If anything it's made it worse.

I keep going back and forth between the authentic-yet-pricey XK3c and the practical-yet-compromise Nord C2.

 

This Hamichord thing however looks like a possible middle ground. Can anyone comment as to how it sounds?

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You can downlaod the Hamichord Software from GSI It's called VB3. It only costs $79 or so at GSI and there's a free demo.

 

Put this in the strange but true evolution of sound and controllers.

 

Oh I see, it's a controller which plugs into the rack running this VB3 on Windows. Hmm...well I already have Logic, and I have heard that the Logic EVB3 is highly regarded, I suppose it would be a good controller for whatever you plugged it into.

But then there's the whole issue of the laptop on stage thing...

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...upon further reading I see that it's not so much a 'rack' as a insert into the instrument itself, which is certainly convenient.

And the audio demos of this VB3 program are certainly not bad at all.

Oh my, now there's a third option in the mix. This isn't helping :-)

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Why not just make an offer on this guy?

 

http://cgi.ebay.com/HAMMOND-Suzuki-XK3C-PRO-drawbar-ORGAN-XK-3-C-used-2-3-t_W0QQitemZ310196464563QQcmdZViewItemQQptZKeyboards_MIDI?hash=item4839266bb3

 

Analogaddict, how is the v-machine? Stable? Does it run mainstage well?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

www.brianho.net

http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/brianho

www.youtube.com/brianhojazz

 

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Do not under-estimate the importance of the INTERFACE. Does it really matter how great it sounds if it's a pain in the ass to actually interact with it?

 

This is true. Mind you, I would have thought the Hamichord had the better interface, seeing as the layout is near-identical to the real B (unlike the XK3-C). You don't even have true presets, just the inverse keys! And from what I've heard the VB3 plugin is just as customizable as the XK-3C sim or EVB3, but I guess the issue would be the in depth editing, which you probably can't do onstage (though you can't do that on a real B either).

 

You do have on the Hamichord the standard clonewheel knobs of Volume, Drive, Equalization (Treble, Bass), KeyClick, Reverb though, which is all you really need onstage isn't it?

I am, on occasion, partial to the synth bass in the lower manual, I do hope that is possible/easy to do.

 

All in all it does look pretty intriguing. About the same price as the XK3-C pro setup & somewhat lighter too. Hmmm...

That said, the real tubes in the XK3-C are so very tempting.

 

Anyone played one of these Hamichords?

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You don't even have true presets, just the inverse keys!

 

Do you mean the XK-3 and '3c? The inverse keys are preset keys and each of those keys is also assigned a "Bank" of presets. The instrument can be put in "A#/B" mode where the left set of drawbars is active when the B preset key is selected and the right set is active when the A# preset is active. If any other preset key is selected the right set of drawbars reverts to controlling the lower manual. The manuals can be un-linked so that selecting a preset key on the XK-3/c changes only the parameters like C/V, Leslie speed etc. and the upper manual drawbar setting. The preset keys on the lower manual change the drawbar settings for the lower manual and pedals. It is also easy to add a drawbar controller such as an XM-1 or even an XM-2 (the complete unit not just the drawbar controller) which may provide other benefits as well. Slider boxes like the Peavey 1600x also work well.

 

 

That said, the real tubes in the XK3-C are so very tempting.

 

Yes they are.

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You don't even have true presets, just the inverse keys!

 

Do you mean the XK-3 and '3c? The inverse keys are preset keys and each of those keys is also assigned a "Bank" of presets. The instrument can be put in "A#/B" mode where the left set of drawbars is active when the B preset key is selected and the right set is active when the A# preset is active. If any other preset key is selected the right set of drawbars reverts to controlling the lower manual. The manuals can be un-linked so that selecting a preset key on the XK-3/c changes only the parameters like C/V, Leslie speed etc. and the upper manual drawbar setting. The preset keys on the lower manual change the drawbar settings for the lower manual and pedals. It is also easy to add a drawbar controller such as an XM-1 or even an XM-2 (the complete unit not just the drawbar controller) which may provide other benefits as well. Slider boxes like the Peavey 1600x also work well.

You can also use the preset keys to affect your MIDI rig, making the XK-3c in particular one of the better MIDI controllers on the market these days.
A ROMpler is just a polyphonic turntable.
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