Shirokuma has released Notre Dame de Budapest Pipe Organ Samples(aka NDB) for Tascam GigaStudio. The sample library was created fromthe pipe organs of two Hungarian cathedrals: the Notre Dame de Buda(The Church of the Blessed Virgin, commonly known as Matthias-Church),which is the biggest organ in Hungary with a 99-stop Rieger-Klossorgan; and the Notre Dame de Kispest (Church of Our Lady, Kispest),which has a 38-stop Varga organ.
Every sample in the library is 30 to 40 seconds long, without aloop: pedal notes are 1 minute long. The company adds that all theorgan artifacts, such as the valves of the pipes and the windchestactivity, can be heard together with the natural reverb of thecathedrals. Shirokuma also claims to have recorded every importantcombination and stop that would be useful in performing the majority ofpipe-organ literature. The User's Guide that accompanies the librarycontains detailed registration information and usagerecommendations.
On average, every second note was sampled in 35 combinations andstops. The original recordings were done at a resolution of 32-bit, 96kHz, and then downsampled to 16-bit, 44.1 kHz. "Because the church isfar from being a low-noise sound studio," the company writes, "thefiles were edited and denoised using every notes own noiseprint withextreme care. The impulse responses of the churches were alsomeasured."
To enhance the realism of the organ samples, the collection alsoincludes swellbox, tremolo, and crescendo-pedal controllerfunctionality, as well as release samples. Special effects include theorgan engines, bells, register switches, and the organ being powered onand off.
The Full Edition and Custom Edition of NDB are available forGigaStudio 2, but the company is preparing a GigaStudio 3-compatibleversion of the library, which will include additional stops.
In addition, Shirokuma has announced two contests for pieces playedwith NDB samples. The International NDB Improvisation and CompositionContest 2004 is a call for original works or improvisations in StandardMIDI Format. The International NDB J.S. Bach Interpretation Contest2004 is a call for interpretations of pieces by this master composer.(http://www.orgona.org)