Reuter, opus 227, Portland, Oregon

The organ of Temple Beth Israel in Portland, Oregon

The congregation was formed in 1858 and first met in Burke's Hall on First Street. In 1861 they built their first edifice which was the first synagogue on the Northern Pacific coast. It was enlarged four years later, but was soon outgrown. A new temple was consecrated in 1889 and housed a Geo. Kilgen organ that burned with the temple in 1923. The present Byzantine-style temple of brick and sandstone was consecrated in April 1928. The Reuter organ was contracted on December 28, 1926. It was scheduled for delivery in September 1927, but was probably not installed until 1928. The cost of the organ was $25,000.00

The Reuter Organ Company is an American organ-building firm founded in 1917 by Adolph C. Reuter (1880-1971). Two years later the firm moved to Lawrence, Kansas. The company still operates today, and it has built more than 2240 organs during its hundred year history. Until the post World War years, the organs were tonally conservative, voiced on moderate wind pressure, following the general trends in the American organ building.

Reuter opus 227 is built along the principles of an orchestral organ in the late American Romantic style, relying on octave stops, especially 8'. Plenty of flue and reed foundation stops of all the possible tonal colors are included. Four different beating/celeste stops are also available. High pitched stops and mutations are rare and voiced to enhance the upper harmonics of the foundation stops, rather than adding brilliance. This allows for extremely smooth crescendos and decrescendos and a truly orchestral sound. The whole organ has only one single mixture of 3 narrow ranks. A special feature of the organ is its extensive use of string stops. Two typical percussion stops, Harp (metal plates) and Chimes (tubular bells), are also included.

The entire organ is under expression. It has four manuals and a pedal. A sixth division is a floating string division whose 5 speaking stops are independently available on each manual. The total number of pipes is 3094 in 45 ranks, forming 80 speaking stops.

The compass of manuals is 61 keys, but there is a sixth octave available through supercouplers (most stops have 73 pipes). The pedal compass is 32 keys.

With the generosity of Schnitzer family, Portland philanthropists, and temple members, the organ was restored by Bond Organ Builders in 2004, when the original Quintadena on Swell was replaced by Principal 4.

The organ is especially suitable for symphonic transcriptions, Romantic repertoire, and also for popular music of the early 20th century.

Compiled using notes of Michael Barnes and OHS data.
Special thanks to Michael Barnes and Susie Young for their support during recording.



The samples are offered in 48kHz/24bit resolution. The multiple releases have three levels: short, mid and long. Hauptwerk v.5 and higher required. The sample set is encrypted, dongle protected. Hauptwerk Advanced version is strongly recommended, the Lite version is not suitable to run the Surround variant of the sample set (memory limitations, audio channels limitations). There is no use of the sample set possible in any other software.

Reverb time

The reverb time is ca. 2 seconds, although it tends to be longer on low frequencies.

Keyboards, pedalboard

The original compass of the keyboards is 61 keys (full 5 octaves). 6th octave is available through supercouplers. The original compass of the pedal division is 32 keys.


All ranks of all the divisions were recorded with and without tremulants where available for the most convincing tremulant behavior. However, loading the authentic tremmed ranks consumes large amount of RAM. It is possible to select to use the artificial tremulant instead to save RAM (the switch is located on the mixer tab).


RAM consumption: 6-channel surround

16-bit, other settings default:  23.5 GB

20-bit, other settings default:  41.3 GB (recommended)

24-bit, other settings default:  45.7 GB

RAM consumption: 2-channel wet

16-bit, other settings default: 8.9 GB

20-bit, other settings default:  GB

24-bit, other settings default: 15.8 GB

Screen resolution 1280x1024 px or more.

Polyphony of 10000 voices recommended for the full suround (4500 pipes minimum).

Polyphony of 4000 simultaneous pipes recommended for use of the wet sample set.

Surround format

The sample set is offered in the Surround variant (6 channels). In addition to the usual 4-channel surround, there are two more alternative front channels. In total, there are 4 front audio channels and 2 rear channels. The two pairs of the front ranks feature two different recording positions: direct (near to the pipes) and diffuse (distant from the instrument). These two pairs of the front ranks can either be mixed together freely to achieve any listening position between the two extremes, or used separately - depending on the preferences of the user. A dedicated "mixing desk" is available in Hauptwerk to mix the sound to the desired level.

The Specification


1. Choir (expr.) C–c4
Contra Gamba 16'            
Diapason 8'    
Concert Flute 8'    
Unda Maris (beat.) 8'       
Dulciana 8'    
Flauto Traverso 4'    
Concert Piccolo 2'    
Clarinet 8'    
English Horn 8'    
Harp Celeste 4'    
Harp Celeste 8'    
Choir to Choir 8'    
Choir Unison Off      
Choir to Choir 4'    
Viola 8    
Viole d'Orchestre 8    
Viole Celeste (beat.)  8    
Violina 4    
Mixture III    
String Tremolo      
2. Great (expr.) C–c4
Double Diapason 16'      
First Diapason 8'    
Second Diapason 8'             
Doppel Flote 8'    
Clarabella 8'    
Violon Cello 8'    
Erzahler 8'    
Erzahler Celeste (beat.)  8'    
Octave 4'    
Flute Harmonic 4'    
Tromba 8'    
Great to Great 16'    
Great Unison Off      
Great to Great 4'    
Viola 8'    
Viole d'Orchestre 8'    
Viole Celeste (beat.)  8'    
Violina 4'    
Mixture III    
String Tremolo      
3. Swell (expr.) C–c4
Bourdon 16'   
Diapason 8'  
Tibia Clausa 8'        
Gedeckt 8'  
Salicional 8'  
Vox Celeste (beat.)  8'  
Principal 4'  
Dolce Flute 4'  
Flute Quint 2 2/3'   
Flautino 2'  
Tierce 1 3/5'   
Cornet III  
Contra Fagotto 16'  
Cornopean 8'  
Oboe 8'  
Shofar Horn 8'  
Vox Humana 8'  
Swell to Swell 16'  
Swell Unison Off    
Swell to Swell 4'  
Viola 8'  
Viole d'Orchestre 8'  
Viole Celeste (beat.)   8'  
Violina 4'  
Mixture III  
String Tremolo    
4. Solo (expr.) C–c4
Stentorphone 8
Gross Flute 8
Gross Gamba 8
Tuba Major 8'
French Horn 8'
Clarion 4'
Solo to Solo 16' 
Solo Unison Off  
Solo to Solo 4'
Viola 8'
Viole d'Orchestre 8'
Viole Celeste (beat.)  8'
Violina 4'
Mixture III
String Tremolo  
Pedal C–g1
Diapason 32' 
Diapason 16'
Second Diapason   16'
Bourdon 16'
Lieblich Gedeckt 16'
Contra Viole 16'
Major Flute 8'
Cello 8'
Still Gedeckt 8'
Dolce 4'
Trombone   16'
Contra Fagotto 16'
Tromba 8'


  • Solo to Pedal 8'
  • Swell to Pedal 8', 4'
  • Great to Pedal 8', 4'
  • Choir to Pedal 8'
  • Solo to Great 16', 8', 4'
  • Swell to Great 16', 8', 4'
  • Choir to Great 16', 8', 4'
  • Swell to Choir 16', 8', 4'
  • Pedal to Swell, Pedal to Choir, Pedal to Great reverse couplers'


  • Full organ switch (Sforzato)
  • All swells to swell switch
  • Crescendo pedal
  • 5 Swell pedals
  • Divisional and general combinations


  • Shofar Horn is a special reed stop used for the Jewish Liturgy. Its compass is one octave, c0-c1.
  • Percussion stops have limited compass, too.
  • Diapason 32' is acoustic in the lowest octave.





Console view:

this is the general console view. It serves to define the keyboard MIDI inputs for all the divisions. The only active part of this view are the manuals and the pedal. Specifying the MIDI inputs is done by right-clicking on the desired manual or pedal.

All the other screen components are image-only. 




Mixer view:

The virtual listening position is adjusted here. Dragging the sliders downwards means to come closer to pipes (more direct sound), dragging them up means going away from the organ into the church nave.

The mixer settings can be stored, retrieved, reset. 3 different mixer settings can be stored/recalled any time.

The switch in the right makes the selection for the tremulant between the sampled tremulant and artificial (Hauptwerk model) tremulant.





Left+Right Jambs view:

for dual touch screens, split jambs were created. They allow for portrait or landscape orientation, according to the orientation of the touch screens.




Left + Right Jambs Vertical view:

the dual stop jambs offer vertical (portrait) orientation as an alternative.






Simple Jamb:

All the stops and other controls of the organ can be found here. The jamb has alternative horizontal and vertical (portrait) orientation. 

Physical pistons or draw stops can be assigned to a virtual button on screen by right-clicking on the button.

Note to the right click: The Split Jambs and the Simple jamb, all allow for right-click to attach a specific MIDI hardware button to any of the software switch. This is done so that several different MIDI hardware buttons can operate one single software switch, so that the user can operate one stop or one and the same coupler with more than one hardware pistons.


Pedal Matrix:

MIDI continuous controllers (hardware swell pedals) are freely assignable on this tab to any of the existing swell pedal or crescendo pedal of the virtual organ. One hardware swell pedal can control any number of virtual swell pedals which is useful when the physical console has less controllers than needed. The setting can be memorized via 5 dedicated memory pistons and recalled anytime, thus enabling changing the MIDI assignment during performance. For more details, click here.





the crescendo sequence can be adjusted here. By clicking the gray/white box, the stop is enabled/disabled in the given screscendo stage. The crescendo settings is remembered by Hauptwerk via Hauptwerk dedicated combination system (each stage of the crescendo is a memory for the combination system).

If the crescendo sequence gets corrupted by an accident, the Reset button will help you to restore the original crescendo sequence instantly.







  1. Reuter Opus 227 Surround Software Sample Set

    Surround variant, 6 channels, encrypted, dongle protected. Minimum Hauptwerk version: 5. (Also works in all higher versions.)
    Price: Excl. Tax: €430.00 Incl. Tax *: €520.30 Excl. Tax

    Detail & order