People's romance with the classic organ
For hundreds of years the classic organ has offered power, majesty and creativity to the musician that commands all the sounds possible through its configuration. It transforms the performer’s inner feelings and the composer’s intentions into an experience of magnificent proportion to the listener. Viscount now makes it possible for organists throughout the world to experience the thrill that here-to-fore could only be experienced by those musicians and listeners fortunate enough to play on, and listeners to hear in person, organs in the finest cathedrals and venues around the world.
Duplicating the finest sounds of the world with the technology of the future
Physis technology, through its Unico instruments, can now perfectly reproduce the sound, ambience, and configuration of any organ found in famous venues around the world.
Physis technology, using an advanced multi-processor platform, allows an unprecedented huge calculation power. The DSP array architecture is based on the floating-point state of the art, third generation of SHARC® Processors by Analog Devices. Each of them is capable of 2.4 GFLOPS peak performance. Physis, with up to 8 SHARC® Processors, can send and process in excess of 12 Billion instructions per second (sustained rate), thus providing the power to accomplish what digital sampling cannot.
Physis, and its Unico instruments, is the result of 10 years research and development. It is a patented, proprietary technology, developed and owned by Viscount.
Past attempts to duplicate pipe organ sound
With the invention of electronics, companies developed technologies trying to accurately reproduce the sound of the classic pipe organ. They tested new theories and systems which improved sound quality “little-by-little”; however, the sound produced was never a perfect copy. It remained static.
Physis achieves that critical link between architecture and sound.
It is difficult to separate the natural sound an organ produces from its interaction with its surrounding architecture. Each has an effect on the other.
Space and volume are the main architectural contributors effecting sound, especially when the sound is produced by something as unique as a windblown pipe. Each hand-made pipe, with its own height, thickness, design and imperfections, speaks differently into its environment.
Physis creates a perfect reproduction of the original sound
Physis physically models the sound by measuring an organ’s natural and physical attributes, as well as its interaction with its environment—Then Physis rebuilds that sound through modeling technology, not storing samples like older technologies, but rebuilding all the details through complex algorithms, down to the smallest imperfections—those elements that give the original instrument its character and warmth. Physis creates its sound so that it is ever changing, like the organ used for the model; however it can be adjusted to accommodate the desires of the most demanding organist, or acoustically deprived environment.
Reproduction without the use of stored digital samples
Today, with the introduction of Physis Technology, Viscount has succeeded in reproducing sound waves just as they would emanate from a windblown pipe organ—each with its own autonomy, individuality and unique characteristics. Viscount’s Unico instrument, using Physis, produces a reproduction of each note’s sound wave just as it sounded in the original organ. Since there are no “breaks” or “split-points”, as found in sampling technologies, the progression of sound across the keyboard is accurate, smooth and natural.
However, the shapes of Physis sound waves are open, thus, making it is possible to edit, modify and extend their structure. They produce a tri-dimensional sound. Physis speaks, not just with “Left-to-Right” motion, as currently done with older technologies, but also with “Front-to-Back” and “Up and Down” motion as they do in real windblown pipes.
The electronic organ (as with all sophisticated electronic devices) comes from an information technology environment. Every day we are asked to connect organs to a USB pen, or to use some standard computer files, or even to connect to a printer. The operating system is the most important program that runs on a computerized device. Every general-purpose computer must have an operating system to perform basic tasks and controlling peripheral devices. In our current line of products, we have used our own operating systems, written line by line by our software specialists. Physis organs are powered by LINUX that is a Unix-like operating system for personal computers and is a worldwide standard system compatible with most other hardware. Thanks to the calculation power of the microcontrollers we will use, it is now possible to embed linux inside our organs.
Linux is totally transparent to the organist, who’ll continue to use his instrument like he does today, but with a lot of benefits in terms of connectivity and integration with the personal computers world. Linux supports, for example, the whole USB world (both as master or device), ethernet connection, IP protocol (Internet) and many other protocols and hardware peripherals.
Allows musicians and listeners to experience the ultimate in “Classic Organ Technology”