The new five manual organ for the Church of S.Antonio dei Portoghesi in Rome is a unique and original project. The main organ is located on the main balcony over the entrance. The ‘Great’ manual is situated inside the antique organ case (the original instrument was lost). The Recit and Pedal are on side balconies located on either side of the main balcony, the pipes are not visible from the church at ground level.
The Positiv and the Echo organs are located in two balconies near the Altar.
The instrument features a « sensitive » key-action by the use of special electronics: this technology allows one to play the organ simulating a mechanical action organ.
Unlike the traditional electric transmission, this system allows the organist to control the attack of the sound of the pipe, something which is otherwise not possible by the “fast opening” of the pallet in traditional electric actions.
It is possible to reach this goal by inserting a special sensor in every key which is able to instantly read the position of the key during its movement and to transmit this information with great accuracy to the corresponding pallet in the instrument. In the organ a special device is installed to control the movement of the pallet: it receives the signals from the sensor of the key and transmits its position to the pallet (like a mechanical action) with no delay: that means the movement of the pallet exactly follows the movement of the key.
The result is evident in the acoustic behaviour of the pipes, that matches the one obtainable on a mechanical organ.
This system can be useful in those cases in which the architectural limitations of the church do not allow the installation of a mechanical organ but where there is the intention to build an instrument with such characteristics.