ef37a wrote:There is it seems a degree of "snobbery" in the church organ world?
Just a bit! I have some fabulous old books on the development and building of pipe organs, and you can almost feel the sneering coming off the pages!
The company developed a pipe organ system that used electric action.
Yes, it became a very popular upgrade in the mid-60s when transistors allowed clever logic control systems to be incorporated. In fact the British console company SSL actually started out in 1969 making electric control systems for pipe organs (the first mixing console didn't come along until nearly ten years later):https://www.solidstatelogic.com/about/history
The system was/is however not liked by the purists who insist that only "tracker" action is the real and proper way for an organ to "speak" .
There is a movement within the organ world that claims the direct tracker system allows the player to 'feel' how and when the valves open and thus provides some degree of dynamic performance control vaguely akin to that of a piano. However, I remain rather unconvinced myself, and a study of the nature of the mechanics involves makes the claimed touch-response highly unlikely in all but the smallest of instruments... but I'm not a concert-standard organist so what do I know?!
He would have LOVED a modern keyboard at home and the now fabulous repro quality we can get for really silly money these days.
Absolutely! The quality of the free Hauptwerk pipe organ is astonishing, and the paid-for options are quite stunning! The practice (electronic) church organ I have here came from a chap in Blackpool who replaced it with a Hauptwerk-based theatre-organ system using a bespoke three-manual console that he was building himself, with the outer console casing, pedalboard and bench coming from a derelict and redundant cinema organ near Bradford. It filled his back bedroom, but sounded amazing!