Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between Piano and Organ

Piano vs Organ

There is a multitude of differing qualities between a piano and an organ. The most obvious one is their form and function. That said however, there are a number of similarities too, most notable being that both instruments use a keyboard as the primary means of playing.
A piano and an organ both use a keyboard as means for performance, but the mechanics behind the keys is different.

On a piano, whenever there’s a stroke on a key that is mechanically attached to a hammer, a sound is produced. When this happens, the hammer will hit a metal string on a large frame that is held in tension. The different strings of a piano are tuned to distinct frequencies, giving chords and sounds characterized by dissonance. This is achieved when a player hits more than one key stroke at a time. Keys are hit repetitively so as to sustain the piano’s sound, as the vibrations from the key strokes only last a while.

An organ keyboard (electronic), on the other hand, creates sound electronically when a key is depressed. There are no physical strings to be hit but rather, an electronic circuit is completed with each key depression. The notes will sustain endlessly so there’s no need to strike the keys repetitively. This is a key difference between an electronic organ and the percussive piano.

Use as accompanying instruments

When used as accompanying instruments, their functions vary greatly. Since the piano is a percussion instrument, the first keyboard stroke produces much of its initial power, making it a better leading instrument. For an instance, when used as an accompanying instrument for a church’s congregation, a piano will create a rhythm and melody line quite very fast, thus, a piano is often used to start off a song as an introduction.
However, an electronic guitar will better provide follow-ups for a leading instrument. Unlike the piano, much of the organ’s performance power results from the sustain period, not initial keyboard stroke. An organ is mainly used to fill in sounds omitted by the percussive instruments.

Summary
A piano is a percussion instrument while an organ is a wind instrument.
Piano keys are mechanically attached to a hammer while organ keys are not.
Piano key strokes create sound that lasts a short while organ sound persists.
Piano key strokes need to be repetitively stroked to maintain sound whereas for an organ its not necessary.


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