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Old 03-21-2019, 01:56 PM   #11
Harley G
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Default Re: Jim McGillivray’s AURORA JM Chanter

Looks like a rebirthed D Naill with that big F and the small D. What were you pitched at on the audio file? Sounds quite low.

Might be the recording but the D sounds thin and the F sounds disproportionally overpowering.
He still has not got rid of the thin raspy hA so I must assume he likes it.
How well does it respond if you hold a lG and then do some rapid burl like movement on the hG? Is it responsive?
Is the reed seat plain or threaded?

Looks well finished apart from that coarse logo engraving, just my taste, (or lack of).
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Old 03-24-2019, 09:46 PM   #12
William McKenzie
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Default Re: Jim McGillivray’s AURORA JM Chanter

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Originally Posted by BGP View Post
David Glen drones and Kinnaird reeds.
Would never have guessed that. I think this speaks to the larger reality that there is a lot of stereotypes about each maker and what they should/do sound like. Really it's all what you make of it (your setup).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harley G View Post
Looks like a rebirthed D Naill with that big F and the small D. What were you pitched at on the audio file? Sounds quite low.
Doesn't sound overtly low to my ear. I don't mean this in any specific way other than curiosity but perhaps you are used to band pitch or something more like the Kyo chanter which is above 480hz?
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Old 03-25-2019, 11:03 AM   #13
Jim McGillivray
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Default Re: Jim McGillivray’s AURORA JM Chanter

Just came upon this thread and thought I would chime in.

This chanter is quite different from the old Gael, which was meant to go at 470.

The AURORA JM chanter will pitch between 472 and 478, depending on the reed. I'm currently playing a Shepherd reed in mine at around 476.

With solo chanters currently pitching at 480+, this may not be the best choice for competitive success; I was raised playing between 468 and 474, so I'm partial to the 470s.

The piobaireachd below was recorded a few years ago with this chanter and a Troy reed. I played these chanters and sold them by word of mouth for about four years before actually putting it up on my website a few months ago. It's still the only chanter I play.

https://pipetunes.ca/tunes/piobairea...ntoshs-banner/


Jim
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Old 03-30-2019, 12:13 PM   #14
William McKenzie
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Default Re: Jim McGillivray’s AURORA JM Chanter

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McGillivray View Post
Just came upon this thread and thought I would chime in.

This chanter is quite different from the old Gael, which was meant to go at 470.

The AURORA JM chanter will pitch between 472 and 478, depending on the reed. I'm currently playing a Shepherd reed in mine at around 476.

With solo chanters currently pitching at 480+, this may not be the best choice for competitive success; I was raised playing between 468 and 474, so I'm partial to the 470s.

The piobaireachd below was recorded a few years ago with this chanter and a Troy reed. I played these chanters and sold them by word of mouth for about four years before actually putting it up on my website a few months ago. It's still the only chanter I play.

https://pipetunes.ca/tunes/piobairea...ntoshs-banner/


Jim
Thanks for clearing this up Jim. I really appreciate that you focus so much attention toward a lower pitch and all of your work in reproduction pipes. I've listened to this tune now many times over.
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Old 08-06-2019, 12:26 PM   #15
Patrick McLaurin
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Default Re: Jim McGillivray’s AURORA JM Chanter

I have now had the opportunity to try one thanks to a friend of the blog who had theirs shipped to me to try before I'll ship it on to them.

I played it today with a Shepherd Bb reed, though the reed doesn't do its name justice in a Shepherd Orchestral chanter as I have to tape down to get to 466 Hz

Anyways, I played this same reed in the Aurora and a Shepherd Mk 3 Classic. I find they are similar in some ways, for example I didn't have to change the hemp on the reed at all between the two chanters. However, the Aurora has a threaded reed seat so that helps not having to move the hemp a little.

The Aurora came in at 476 Hz whereas the Shepherd came in at 480 Hz. I'm used to this Mk 3 tuning around 476 with my other reeds so this reed is a little sharper than most. This also shows that you can expect the Aurora to be 4 Hz flatter than a Mk 3.

Regarding the Aurora, I would say that the high A has a very clear tone. The F is NOT weak. E got taped. D sounded a wee bit flat, just barely. C and F were spot on with no tape; I actually only taped high G and E. That C wasn't flat was somewhat surprising to me considering how evenly spaced the bottom hand holes are (knowing that some makers use a more uneven spacing to get C sharper), but the C is a relatively larger hole so I'm sure that helps. The overall spread is longer than the Mk 3, but only because of the space between D and E, so the finger spread per hand is the same.

I look forward to playing it a bit more before sending it on. I aim to try a few other reed brands and we'll see if I can eek out a recording. I haven't been practicing all summer (busy with the kiddos out of school), but if I happen upon a set that doesn't totally suck I'll pass it along via the blog.
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Old 08-06-2019, 08:20 PM   #16
William McKenzie
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Default Re: Jim McGillivray’s AURORA JM Chanter

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick McLaurin View Post
I have now had the opportunity to try one thanks to a friend of the blog who had theirs shipped to me to try before I'll ship it on to them.

I played it today with a Shepherd Bb reed, though the reed doesn't do its name justice in a Shepherd Orchestral chanter as I have to tape down to get to 466 Hz

Anyways, I played this same reed in the Aurora and a Shepherd Mk 3 Classic. I find they are similar in some ways, for example I didn't have to change the hemp on the reed at all between the two chanters. However, the Aurora has a threaded reed seat so that helps not having to move the hemp a little.

The Aurora came in at 476 Hz whereas the Shepherd came in at 480 Hz. I'm used to this Mk 3 tuning around 476 with my other reeds so this reed is a little sharper than most. This also shows that you can expect the Aurora to be 4 Hz flatter than a Mk 3.

Regarding the Aurora, I would say that the high A has a very clear tone. The F is NOT weak. E got taped. D sounded a wee bit flat, just barely. C and F were spot on with no tape; I actually only taped high G and E. That C wasn't flat was somewhat surprising to me considering how evenly spaced the bottom hand holes are (knowing that some makers use a more uneven spacing to get C sharper), but the C is a relatively larger hole so I'm sure that helps. The overall spread is longer than the Mk 3, but only because of the space between D and E, so the finger spread per hand is the same.

I look forward to playing it a bit more before sending it on. I aim to try a few other reed brands and we'll see if I can eek out a recording. I haven't been practicing all summer (busy with the kiddos out of school), but if I happen upon a set that doesn't totally suck I'll pass it along via the blog.
Ok first of all.. weird. I *just* this afternoon (after spending days in US Customs ) received my Aurora chanter along with other chanters including the Mk 3 from Jim McG.

I noticed mostly all of the same attributes and so far I'm liking it. High A is clear and halfway between soft/distant and upfront, F sounds great. In fact all notes have a clear, clean projection to them without being overbearing. I too noticed how the lower hand spread is compact like a Kyo or Mk 3 but the hand itself is further down the chanter slightly, it's comfy to me. My D was also flat, though this Troy is new and we have a heatwave currently so my living room was a cool 79F/26C. Like you're saying Patrick I'm looking forward to playing it a bit more.

The Shepherd Mk 3 is also a great chanter. Notes were of course bang on with the supplied Shepherd reed. I don't think I ever realized how thick the walls are on Shepherd chanters. This chanter is chunky. Going back and forth between it and the Aurora I thought the Aurora was a little more comfortable in the neck and it vibrated from the Troy reed like it was alive which is super cool to me. The Shepherd was metered and steady. Both good honestly.

I tried a Gandy as well and thought it was comfortable and the notes sounded great; they have that classic McCallum ring and 'fatness' to them which I like. I think compared to the Shepherd Mk3 or the Aurora though the volume and higher pitch around 485hz means it's probably not going to be my go to. I found though that the High G was very sharp with several reeds like McPhee, G1, Troy, Chesney etc. which is another commonality with my current McCallum chanter. The heat probably didn't help much but sharp High G's grind my gears. Great chanter though in the right conditions.
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Old 08-07-2019, 09:01 AM   #17
John Buchanan
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Default Re: Jim McGillivray’s AURORA JM Chanter

Patrick, as far as finger spacing, how do you feel the Aurora compares to the Kyo?

Cheers,

John
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Old 08-08-2019, 04:53 PM   #18
Patrick McLaurin
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Default Re: Jim McGillivray’s AURORA JM Chanter

Hey John, it’s a little bit longer on the bottom hand. It is a normal spacing. Very similar to Shepherd Mk 3. Shorter than the Gael if you ever had one of those. I’m working on a blog post and will have a picture with a Kyo in it.
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Old 08-09-2019, 07:11 AM   #19
BGP
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Default Re: Jim McGillivray’s AURORA JM Chanter

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick McLaurin View Post
Hey John, it’s a little bit longer on the bottom hand. It is a normal spacing. Very similar to Shepherd Mk 3. Shorter than the Gael if you ever had one of those. I’m working on a blog post and will have a picture with a Kyo in it.
In case anyone can't wait https://imgur.com/gallery/PAt99oQ
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Old 08-09-2019, 04:42 PM   #20
Patrick McLaurin
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Default Re: Jim McGillivray’s AURORA JM Chanter

Quote:
Originally Posted by BGP View Post
In case anyone can't wait https://imgur.com/gallery/PAt99oQ
Thanks, that's a great shot.

My "full" review is here:

https://www.patrickmclaurin.com/wordpress/?p=4172

I'd be happy to answer any questions and provide clarifications. I plan on shipping the chanter back to its owner very soon so if you have any reeds you'd like me to try, let me know soon and I'll see what I can do.
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