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#81607 - 02/22/09 03:11 AM 20-year old kawai or 20-yr old yamaha?
tongsa Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/21/09
Posts: 4
Loc: singapore
hi, am new to the forum and to the world of pianos in general! am not a player but have a 8 yr old appearing for level 1 this year. have seen a 20-year old kawai us55 (grand upright said the salesman) and a 20-yr old yamaha 30b1/bl series (serial no is 46, 47), price point is similar, condition of the innards are comparable based on my limited knowledge. do i get a more mellow piano like the kawai with a loud bass and apparently higher contrast, and more confounding is the "need" for heavier keys which a kawai has compared to the yamaha. does one "need" heavier keys? the salesperson told me that as my girl progresses, i could consider adding weights if required. sound-wise, i am ok with either. my kid finds it easier to hit the yamaha keys! idea is to get a piano for the medium to long term before even thinking of upgrading! any thoughts, inputs?

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#81608 - 02/24/09 03:34 AM Re: 20-year old kawai or 20-yr old yamaha?
pianobroker Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/14/07
Posts: 4309
Loc: North Hollywood CA.
Having had both mdls. you are describing many times over,you are asking a very subjective question of the pianist which should one prefer. My personal opinion would be to go for the Kawai US55.Though the action geometry and feel on both pianos are very much different,the Kawai I think would lead itself to be more condusive for building technic in that it is a bit heavier /firmer than the action of the Yamaha U30BL. Comparing the touch among piano players it will be a split decision as for which the players prefer for reasons other than the touchweight..
_________________________
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#81609 - 02/24/09 01:48 PM Re: 20-year old kawai or 20-yr old yamaha?
brahms Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/22/08
Posts: 109
Loc: California
Not just weight matters, test the evenness of all the keys. The whole range of keys has to be perfectly even, you need a technicain to check this out or ask a pianist friend to go with you. The dynamic range matters too.

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#81610 - 02/24/09 01:55 PM Re: 20-year old kawai or 20-yr old yamaha?
Marty Flinn Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/25/06
Posts: 2604
Understand that on either instrument you are entering the last half of the useful musical lifespan of these pianos. The last half will not be nearly as musical and trouble free as the first half.

It all comes down to budget and how many years of use in your expectations. Pianos don't get better with age. Pianos don't last forever.
_________________________
Co-Author of The Complete Idiot's Guide To Buying A Piano. A "must read" before you shop.
Work for west coast dealer for Yamaha, Schimmel, Bosendorfer, Wm. Knabe.

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#81611 - 02/24/09 03:34 PM Re: 20-year old kawai or 20-yr old yamaha?
cah77388 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/03/07
Posts: 85
Loc: Spring, Texas
I prefer heavier key action, which is why I have a Kawai....and the fact that I just don't care for Yamaha pianos....look at it this way....the heavier key action on the Kawai would build up the strength of your child's fingers which would help when they find themselves in a do or die situational thumb-war. \:\) ....But it is solely up to the piano player in question....you could always ask the teacher as well.
_________________________
1976 Kawai KG-2C
1949 B. Shoninger Spinet
2003 Casio Privia PX100

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#81612 - 02/25/09 02:48 AM Re: 20-year old kawai or 20-yr old yamaha?
brahms Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/22/08
Posts: 109
Loc: California
Fir the very facts that Mart Finn mentioned, that is all the more reason you need to be aware of the action, an RPT can tell you how much work is expected to fix these problems if any. Some owners like myself is very fastidious at fixing any problem that arises , and my Kawai looks and feels like new when it is sold, because I maintain it. even though I knew I wiould not be able to recover the costs of what I put into it. I enjoy my piano.
I don't mean to sound boastful, I just want to point out not all 20 years old( or more) pianos are at their 1/2 life.

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#81613 - 02/25/09 06:19 AM Re: 20-year old kawai or 20-yr old yamaha?
tongsa Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/21/09
Posts: 4
Loc: singapore
seems like the general preference is a kawai us55. so, thanks, am going back to check the us55...to be honest, i like the sound of them both, and the price is the same...hence the dilemma!

the teacher said the yamaha is "easier" to play! my concern is if the keys are hard/heavier, the brat will not practice as much!

while on my hunt, heard some interesting analogies - here for your amusement too! yamaha: toyota to kawai's honda; yamaha to a mercedes to a kawai's bmw (not sure if i agree on that one); and then the yamaha to a pc while a kawai is the mac!!

ciao...

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#81614 - 02/25/09 06:22 AM Re: 20-year old kawai or 20-yr old yamaha?
tongsa Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/21/09
Posts: 4
Loc: singapore
oh, and one more thing - would like it to last me about 5 odd years at a minimum with the option of keeping it longer if required or swap for a newer one or upgrade!

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#81615 - 02/25/09 01:15 PM Re: 20-year old kawai or 20-yr old yamaha?
pianobroker Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/14/07
Posts: 4309
Loc: North Hollywood CA.
If the pianos are in great cond.at present they should sustain another 30-50 years with periodic maintenance and upkeep.Both are polyester so the finish will last longer than one's lifetime especially that Kawai "hard finish". You should retain great trade up or resale value if one keeps it in good shape in that both are artist mdls.and you are already purchasing at a depreciated price as for it being preowned.
Good luck!
_________________________
www.pastperfectpiano.com
Largest selection in the USA
100+Steinway and M&H grands
Warehouse showroom Onsite Restoration
Preowned & Restored
Hailun dlr.818-255-3145
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_z8RvhXGKzY
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Voo0zumHGgE

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#81616 - 02/25/09 04:33 PM Re: 20-year old kawai or 20-yr old yamaha?
apple* Offline


Registered: 01/01/03
Posts: 19862
Loc: Kansas
i have not noticed much difference in the actions of the uprights myself.
_________________________
accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

love and peace, ├Ľun (apple in Estonian)

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#1155216 - 03/01/09 12:17 PM Re: 20-year old kawai or 20-yr old yamaha? [Re: apple*]
Notorius Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/01/09
Posts: 15
Loc: California

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#1160532 - 03/10/09 06:19 AM Re: 20-year old kawai or 20-yr old yamaha? [Re: apple*]
tongsa Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/21/09
Posts: 4
Loc: singapore
thanks for the advice. i took a budding concert pianist with me to try the kawai and he loved it... he tried all the keys and played some 6 pieces....in fact, he said he liked it better than his own kawai grand! so, yes, the piano is at home now and i love hearing it resound through the house even though my daughter is not the best of players! she does complain about the touch a bit though! her previous experience was on a yamaha but am hopeful she will get used to the touch! and last but not the least, i am getting inspired as well!

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