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hammond b3 leslie question


OctaveDr

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I am very close to acquiring a B3…it is in VERY good condition (in a living room for 48+years) it comes with a hammond speaker cabinet...

my question is this: I NEED a leslie! What models are the most desirable? (122/147?) what are their costs? would a motion sound be a bad choice? (this will be for studio use only)

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First, congrats on your purchase. I owned a B3/147 combo for 12 years. Played with it all over the place. The first thing you need to do is get with some service oriented people about your B3. There are many things that may need replacing (tubes, caps, etc.) due to the age of the organ. Did the previous owners have it serviced on a regular basis? Is your B3 equipped with a percussion unit or was it made before these were added? The 147 (at least the older ones) had a impedence switch on the amp input to balance it with another speaker (usually one that was built-in with the organ). When I had mine, I was told that I should be using a 122 model instead. Both would work but the 122 would match up better with the B3. I now play a 'wannabe' with a Motion Sound KBR-3D. When I first got the KBR, I took it to the church where my old B3 sits and compared it to the 147. Since my old B3 had a 1/4" output along with the leslie pin, I was able to listen to both and switch between them very easily. Though the KBR lacked in overall bass depth vs the 147, I was very surprised how well it sounded. I was able to fine tune it to sound darn close to the 147. Do you plan on playing live or will it be at home or in a studio setting? If you plan on giging with it then look into Motion Sound equipment. The Pro-3t with the Low-Pro will give you a great Leslie experience with a lot less weight.(however, there are many who post here that use a real Leslie). If you will be in one place, then get the real thing. It still sounds the best. :)

Kurzweil PC3, Hammond SK-1 + Ventilator, Korg Triton. 2 JBL Eon 510's.

 

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Is your B3 equipped with a percussion unit or was it made before these were added?
If it is indeed a B-3, then it has percussion. If it lacks percussion, then it's an earlier Hammond made prior to the introduction of the -3 series (which introduced percussion) in 1955 (actually,-3's didn't ship until early 1956, most likely so dealers could unload remaining -2 series instruments).

 

Most desirable Leslie for studio use?

 

122 or 142; 147 or 145. 251's are usable too.

 

The short (142 and 145) cabinets are tight-sounding Leslies that record rather well.

 

The taller (122, 147) cabinets have more bottom.

 

Earlier single-speed cabinets can sound wonderful; but if one desires to have the slow "chorale" speed of the 2-speed Leslies a speed control accessory must be purchased for the Leslie (the Hampton 2-speed converter from www.bborgan.com is an excellent little unit.) Early single-speed Leslies that sound great with a B-3 are the 21H, 22H (sweet!) and the tallboy 31H (huge sound, incredible bottom.)

 

Have fun... :)

 

And if the Hammond tone cabinet the organ comes with happens to be a PR-40, hang onto it. They're pretty much worthless market-wise, but give you some tonal options to play with. PR-40's have a cavernous reverb, and can sound incredible mixed with a Leslie.

 

TP

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Todd A. Phipps

"...no, I'm not a Hammondoholic...I can stop anytime..."

http://www.facebook.com/b3nut ** http://www.blueolives.com

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thanks for the replies...good information...

i am glad to hear that the motion sound can be an ok alternative...

i think that i am going to have a hard time finding a decent leslie in my area...the motion sound might get me by for a while, then when i aquire a leslie i can use on synths, etc...

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The Leslie 825 is a little Pro-Line portable Leslie. It has a 12" speaker with a single foam rotor. They're not bad, and are nice for guitar and fun for electric piano, but they lack the rotary horn of the classic Leslies.

 

An 825 wouldn't be my first choice for an only Leslie, but if it's cheap enough ($200 or less) than it's worth having just as an effect box. Most sellers want more than $200 for an 825, though.

 

TP

---

Todd A. Phipps

"...no, I'm not a Hammondoholic...I can stop anytime..."

http://www.facebook.com/b3nut ** http://www.blueolives.com

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