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Carillon Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Why use computer storage to store music? Why not metal rods, special cards or CD’s?
A. The BRG Carillon uses solid-state memory chips to store music and schedules.  Standard audio CD’s may also be played. No other digital carillon offers greater sound quality. Some company’s use amplified metal rods (like a mantel clock). They do not sound like real cast bells.

Q. Are all carillons alike?
A. Whether it’s a $4,000 or a $40,000 system, most digital carillons consist of four basic components.

1.The sound source. The BRG carillon makes use of both solid state memory, with no moving parts to wear out.

2. The computer controller. While all electronic carillons include a computer, BRG does not attempt to hide this fact. This allows us to use a large format, full color screen and standard computer keyboard to control the system.

3. Power Amplifier. BRG offers the most powerful professional grade amplifiers in the industry, including class-D digital switching amplifiers.

4. Outdoor speakers. BRG offers a variety of speakers, ranging from a single flute and driver to a quadruple flute with quad-redundant drivers.

The question to ask those overpriced systems is, “ What part of your system is worth $40,000? Is it the computer, the amplifier, sound source, or what?” The answer, of course is, none of the above.

Q. What is the song storage capacity of the BRG Carillon?
A. The BRG carillon uses solid-state memory which can store more music than is available.  No mechanical disk drives or other parts prone to wear and tear are used.

Q. How easy is it to program a bell-ringing schedule?
A. The BRG Carillon uses a conventional computer keyboard and full color display with pop-up help. There are several alternatives for configuring your ring schedule. We can program your ring schedule before we ship the system. Or, you can call us with your desired ring schedule after you receive the system and we will assist you over the phone. Of course, you can configure the ring schedule yourself if you choose to.

Q. Are batteries used to backup the song schedule?
A. Batteries eventually wear out; therefore, the entire song play schedule is stored in non-volatile memory that does not require power. If the power goes out, nothing is lost. When the power is restored, the carillon will resume normal operation, playing right on schedule, as if nothing had happened.

Q. What does open architecture design mean?
A. The BRG Carillon incorporates conventional, and readily available, computer and audio technology. Most other manufacturers use proprietary technology that only the factory or their representative can service.

Q. How much do out-of-warranty repairs cost?
A. We will quote you a repair cost depending on the module to be repaired or replaced. Because the BRG Carillon is open architecture design, you also have the option of using local computer and/or audio service companies. With most other carillons, you are bound to the whims of the factory for the cost service as well as the time to obtain service. Local computer/audio companies will not be able to help you with those systems. You only have two choices with proprietary systems. You pay what they demand or you don’t receive service.

Q. How do we obtain service?
A. Warranty repairs are promptly addressed. For out of warranty repairs, you also have the option of using BRG or local computer and/or audio service companies.

Q. How much does additional music cost?
A. We don’t sell music. All the music in our library is included with every carillon.

Q. What is the purpose of the amplifier control module?
A. The amplifier control module has three functions. First, it switches the power amplifier on and off as needed, which extends the life of the of the amplifier.  Second, the device includes the radio remote control receiver.  Third, the device include the PC time synchronizer.

Q. What is the purpose of the PC time Synchronizer?
A. The PC time synchronizer maintains accurate system time.  When performing publicly, it’s very important that the schedule plays on time. Striking hourly chimes at the incorrect time is a negative reflection on the church.  Conversely, when the chimes strike precisely on time, every time, it's a positive reflection on the church.  The BRG Carillon system is factory synchronized to the U.S. Atomic clock. The PC time Synchronizer will maintain the system time to an accuracy of 1 second in 20years. No external GPS or Network connections are required.

Q. Can new program features be added? If so, how much does it cost to upgrade the carillon?
A. Yes. The BRG Carillon is field upgradeable. As new features are added to the control program, they are sent to all customers at no additional charge.

Q. Can I use my own computer in place of the one included with the carillon?
A. Our goal is to provide a system that is both responsive and reliable. To meet this goal, the system cannot be used for any other application other than ringing bells. Furthermore, the hardware provided is specifically configured for the carillon software.

Q. Can I evaluate a carillon system in my area?
A. While you can look at another carillon, generally you can’t perform a full evaluation on someone else’s system. We will gladly send you a new carillon configured to your specifications, for a no obligation free trial. Take a month to fully evaluate the system at your convenience. We pay shipping both ways.

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