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#1415865 - 04/12/10 01:37 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: BDB]
Bill Bremmer RPT Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/21/02
Posts: 3039
Loc: Madison, WI USA
BDB, I saw the old upright that Andy rescued. It is quite a well build piano and really not in bad shape at all. I would love to help him recondition it. Whether or not Andy could really afford to go out and buy a new piano, I sense that he would gain more from the experience of saving the old one that had been put out as trash. He could always sell it later and get a new piano.
_________________________
Bill Bremmer RPT
Madison WI USA
www.billbremmer.com

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#1416066 - 04/12/10 10:04 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT]
Cinnamonbear Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/09/10
Posts: 3745
Loc: Rockford, IL
Originally Posted By: BDB
Originally Posted By: Cinnamonbear
Originally Posted By: BDB
I hope you can broaden your horizons sometime.


BDB,
Would you please elaborate? I don't know what you mean, and I really want to know, because when people give me advice, I want to consider it carefully.

Thanks!

I think you should try the same thing on a variety of pianos, rather than just a worn-out spinet.



Originally Posted By: Bill Bremmer RPT
BDB, I saw the old upright that Andy rescued. It is quite a well build piano and really not in bad shape at all. I would love to help him recondition it. Whether or not Andy could really afford to go out and buy a new piano, I sense that he would gain more from the experience of saving the old one that had been put out as trash. He could always sell it later and get a new piano.


BDB and Bill--

Ha-ha-ha! laugh (That's me laughing melodiously and with good intentions.) Yes, BDB, I would love to broaden my horizons that way!!! Yes, Bill, you are absolutley right and I'll look forward to your directions! Here is a long, way-off-topic reply about some of my journey, since you brought it up...

Last month, I went piano shopping and spent several hours at the piano store in town to see if I believed it was the right time to hunt for a nicer piano. I played the heck out of two Yamaha uprights, one Kawai upright, a couple of Yamaha grands, a Pearl River upright and a grand, a Mason and Hamlin grand, and two Charles Walter consoles. I was specifically looking for touch and tone. I listened and listened and listened and I touched and touched and touched. Nothing beat my Lester. Honestly!

I have also had a lot of experience on a Yamaha grand (new in 1982) that belonged to my dad. It was a joy to play and we spent many hours together on it playing four-hand arrangements (Dvorak, Haydn). Then, when my dad passed away, I spent many hours playing it, deciding how to take care of it. (He lived in New Hampshire, I live in Illinois). For a variety of reasons, I gave it to his star student who had recently gotten a Masters in Music Composition (I truly believe it was the right thing to do, and now we are growing to be brothers because of it!) grin I also believed (and still do) that at the right time and in the right way I would get a really nice piano that is right for me. At the moment, I'm not in a position to buy a bigger, better piano. But when I noticed this Schiller sitting on a neighbor's porch, I kept geting that nagging feeling that I should check it out, which is why it is in my basement now. So, instead of a fine piano at the moment, God gave me a project! Who am I to argue?

I've had my Lester for about 16 years. I got it because I liked its touch and tone and thought we could cooperate. I believed in my Lester, and now that Bill got his hands on it, listen to the sound! I believe in my Schiller, too. (I think Beethoven is going to sound great on it. And fox trots, GP!) Time will tell what specific temperament it needs to bring out its beauty!

So that's some background about past horizons. Who knows what the future holds? For now, I'm content with a piano that lets me play well enough to make some home-made CDs for friends and old ladies, and a piano where I can earn some sweat equity! So, Bill, you're right, I've always been interested in piano guts and I think I have the patience to work with them, now.

BDB, Bill, thank you so much for your thoughts! Sorry if this bunny trail went to "the land of too much information!" But that's my story and I'm sticking with it!

smile

Andy Strong


Edited by Cinnamonbear (04/12/10 11:51 PM)
_________________________
I may not be fast,
but at least I'm slow.

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#1417317 - 04/14/10 05:28 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Cinnamonbear]
Cinnamonbear Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/09/10
Posts: 3745
Loc: Rockford, IL
Originally Posted By: Cinnamonbear
... For now, I'm content with a piano that lets me play well enough to make some home-made CDs for friends and old ladies, ...


...By "old ladies," I meant "little old ladies," as in, "little old ladies who give me cookies for helping them get their houses fixed up without getting cheated." (That is my superpower). I missed the edit window and hope I didn't offend anyone! blush

--CB
_________________________
I may not be fast,
but at least I'm slow.

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#1417407 - 04/14/10 07:52 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Cinnamonbear]
Bill Bremmer RPT Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/21/02
Posts: 3039
Loc: Madison, WI USA
Andy is the kind of customer that confirms for me the reason never to refuse service based upon the kind of piano they have. Any piano can provide a pleasurable musical experience through the application of basic piano technology.
_________________________
Bill Bremmer RPT
Madison WI USA
www.billbremmer.com

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#1417610 - 04/15/10 02:06 AM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Inlanding]
Cinnamonbear Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/09/10
Posts: 3745
Loc: Rockford, IL
Glen,
I just studied your Bach C maj prelude comparisons, and here's what I hear. (I know this piece VERY well)...

The EBVT III is quieter, wetter, and sweeter. The prior ET is "pokey," meaning it pokes at your ears. It is cutting and harsh and sour by comparison. Your playing is very thoughtful, sensitive, and even (which is VERY difficult to pull off in any rendering of this piece). Kudos.

I wonder if Bach knew what he was giving future generations when he wrote this "test piece"?

I also wonder if Jeff Beck knew what he was doing when he recorded "Goodbye Porkpie Hat"? Jeff Beck made some poke-notes in his rendition as well!...



Edited by Cinnamonbear (04/15/10 02:13 AM)
Edit Reason: Jeff Beck comments
_________________________
I may not be fast,
but at least I'm slow.

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#1417616 - 04/15/10 02:27 AM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Cinnamonbear]
Olek Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 6390
Loc: France
Ive listened again to the Bach 2 versions, and I feel the same probably as you when playing, meaning a little surprized with some changes in chords harmony a little unsecure (may be because you are not yet used to that temperament, you are way more at ease with the ET version, even if yes the tuning could have be a little more "singing" - it is yet avery good tuning I'd say.) .

In the EBVT version Some intervals looks like if their span is too large.
The final C maj harmony is nice but with something not quiet, to me.

The more it goes the less I find beauty in unevenness, but indeed I am really having a very accurate hear, used to ET etc...

It seem as that purity is higher (in some tones indeed) , but at the expense of resonance, globally.

SO the musical output may be can be more in front , I dont know, but the harmonic foundation give me feeling of insecurity.
It may in any case be a nice experience from the pianist point of view, the ear/brain like to be surprised.

If it was possible to get that feeling without the sensation of discomfort, that would be perfect.

I would try however to have that kind of purity in standard tuning whenever possible. Unisons quality (and tuning pin firmness) play a large role in that (even more than I have believed before)











Edited by Kamin (04/15/10 02:31 AM)
_________________________
Isaac OLEG - http://picasaweb.google.fr/PianoOleg pro

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#1417647 - 04/15/10 03:31 AM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT]
Olek Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 6390
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Bill Bremmer RPT
Andy is the kind of customer that confirms for me the reason never to refuse service based upon the kind of piano they have. Any piano can provide a pleasurable musical experience through the application of basic piano technology.


Yes agreed it is also rewarding, and you feel you have done right to some musician.

But somewhere it is a pity that good pianos are so rare.

On those kind of piano, a service call range between 4 and 8 hours (the first one). Often, despite the explanations, the customer stay on the impression that I am doing "too much" ("this is not for concerts"...). And remind of the cost before calling me back for a regular tuning, so most of the benefit is often lost soon.

I am well aware of that now when dealing with those situations, most often I do a PR and a little cleaning, screw tightening, capstan turning for a moderate fee, and I take an other date with a quote to make the final job.

With the method "preparatory tuning + extra strong pin setting) shown lately by Alfredo to me, it is possible to make in one pass a little PR ( up to 20 cts possibly) and final tuning (whith a good judgement about the stretching)

A good EDT may help for those situations, as I noticed sometime (when I was using EDTs daily) that a large PR can be more settled (tuning pin wise) than an usual tuning for some reasons (probably the fact that when using an EDT we move not enough the tuning pin and string because if we do so the display get crazy).













Edited by Kamin (04/15/10 03:36 AM)
_________________________
Isaac OLEG - http://picasaweb.google.fr/PianoOleg pro

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#1417755 - 04/15/10 09:18 AM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Olek]
Bill Bremmer RPT Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/21/02
Posts: 3039
Loc: Madison, WI USA
Originally Posted By: Kamin
Ive listened again to the Bach 2 versions, and I feel the same probably as you when playing, meaning a little surprized with some changes in chords harmony a little unsecure (may be because you are not yet used to that temperament, you are way more at ease with the ET version, even if yes the tuning could have be a little more "singing" - it is yet avery good tuning I'd say.) .

In the EBVT version Some intervals looks like if their span is too large.
The final C maj harmony is nice but with something not quiet, to me.

The more it goes the less I find beauty in unevenness, but indeed I am really having a very accurate hear, used to ET etc...

It seem as that purity is higher (in some tones indeed) , but at the expense of resonance, globally.

SO the musical output may be can be more in front , I dont know, but the harmonic foundation give me feeling of insecurity.
It may in any case be a nice experience from the pianist point of view, the ear/brain like to be surprised.

If it was possible to get that feeling without the sensation of discomfort, that would be perfect.

I would try however to have that kind of purity in standard tuning whenever possible. Unisons quality (and tuning pin firmness) play a large role in that (even more than I have believed before)


Yes, Isaac, we have heard it all before. You like ET, only ET and anything else disturbs you. There are a few other people that say the same thing but many more people who don't. The artists often make positive comments about their musical experience but have nothing at all to say about what ET does for them. They can only comment about the piano itself.

The fact is that Bach did not write this music for ET and did not play it in ET. I know, there are people who say that he could have and will go to any length, any speculation possible to find some way to say that he did or that if he lived today, he would want ET.

So, I will counter your remarks and say that I have listened to both versions and I prefer the one in EBVT III. I dislike listening to almost any piano tuned in ET and don't even finish listening to the recording. I rarely go to a concert where there is a piano tuned in ET but when I do, I find myself not listening to the music but thinking how I could have made the piano sound better and more interesting.

I fully understand that if you were to attend a concert where I had tuned the piano, you would do the same. You would not enjoy the music, you would be saying how this interval or that is too large, the others are too small. Every phrase of the music would disturb your sense of balance and harmony. You would go on to say that no artist for whom you work would ever want that.

You claim to have "perfect pitch" but I know that there is no such thing as perfect pitch. It does not exist. No one can have what does not exist. What does exist among a few technicians and even a very few pianists is an overly developed sensitivity to ET. That is what you have.

So, I fully understand what your opinion is and that you are entitled to have your own opinion. However, this means that the only thing you can or ever will say about any of these examples of music in another temperament is that it sounds wrong to you. You are welcome to keep saying that but don't expect that it will prevent others from having a continuous journey in the pleasure of discovering all of the nuances of music that are impossible to discover in ET.

None of what can be heard from a piano tuned in a non-ET can be heard from a piano tuned in ET by playing louder or softer, slower or faster or by using the pedals in various ways. Yet, all of those techniques can be used to enhance further any music played in a non-ET.

What I continually see from the ET only people is an effort to suppress the use of non-ETs to the point of trying to forbid it. The ET only people wish to impose and enforce their own opinion on the entire world. If they manage to impose their rule, no one would ever hear any music any other way.

This, unfortunately, has mostly already come true. The recording industry and music education profession have already accepted it and believe in it without question. The greatest fear among the ET only crowd is that someone may experience a non-ET and actually like it. That can only open the possibility that the people who pay for piano tuning will discover that there are in fact, alternatives and will ask for them.

The deliberate suppression of knowledge of anything but ET created its own nemesis: Reverse Well. Pianists learned to stop really listening to the music they play because of it. When they hear what beauty really can come from the piano, they embrace it.

It's been a long hard road for me to persist in what I believe but I find daily confirmation that it is the right path to follow and I am not turning back. My clients all like what I do. The few negative comments expressed here by a small minority of technicians never do construct a solid argument against it while the positive comments far outweigh the negative.

What would be interesting, is for anyone who wants to take the time and trouble, would be to post some A/B examples on the piano forum. Without identifying which is which, ask the readers to comment on the same music played in ET and the EBVT III or any other non-ET. Which example do you prefer and why? Any descriptive terms are encouraged. Most people will not be able to say which recording is ET but they will have a preference. I already know that the preference for the non-ET will far outweigh the preference for ET.

There are already enough such postings in various threads to do this. I hope that more can be made and it can be an on-going study.
_________________________
Bill Bremmer RPT
Madison WI USA
www.billbremmer.com

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#1417788 - 04/15/10 10:27 AM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT]
Mark R. Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/31/09
Posts: 1870
Loc: Pretoria, South Africa
Dear all,

I've quickly popped into this thread, after taking a break for a few weeks. Bill's closing comment struck me:

Originally Posted By: Bill Bremmer RPT
I already know that the preference for the non-ET will far outweigh the preference for ET.

There are already enough such postings in various threads to do this.


With all due respect, Bill, it's really not surprising that there will be more (apparent) support for non-ET, because as soon as someone in these threads starts criticising non-ET (specifically EBVT-III), he/she gets accused of "wanting to forbid" non-ET, or "wanting you to change the way you do things" - sometimes to the point of being flamed by you. (As I myself have experienced)

Are you surprised, then, that there are (apparently) more supporters of non-ET than critics? Who would want to criticise if the outcome is bound to be a flaming by Mr Bremmer?

Just for the record: I don't think for one moment that Jeff (UnrightTooner), Isaac (Kamin) or anybody else is trying to "forbid" anything, or trying to "make you change your (oh-so-bad) ways". That's what you read into their criticism. (Criticism that was asked for, but not welcomed when it was given!)

If negative feedback is only going to make you defensive, why ask for feedback in the first place?

Anyhow, for my part, I've listened to a number of EBVT-III recordings, and find the deviations from ET so small that I don't find it objectionable.

Wishing all technicians happy tuning!
_________________________
Autodidact interested in piano technology.

1922 49" Zimmermann, project piano.
1970 44" Ibach, daily music maker.

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#1417805 - 04/15/10 10:44 AM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Mark R.]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4187
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada
It has all been stated previous Mark. Interesting to note while everyone here is willing to let Bremmer have his point of view (however skewed it may be) and further, everyone is willing to let him tune the way he would like to, Bill simply cannot abide the fact that some might have a differing point of view. And have people tune differently??? It is almost piano tuning blasphemy according to Bill...
The whole scenario gets tiresome and quite silly after a while....
_________________________
Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
http://silverwoodpianos.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#1417826 - 04/15/10 11:06 AM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Silverwood Pianos]
UnrightTooner Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/13/08
Posts: 4791
Loc: Bradford County, PA
I tuned a piano for a local musical a while ago and went to one of the performances. While the very small pit band warmed up I knew there would be trouble. The lead guitar was tuned so “sweet” I would call it greasy. And the bass guitar was played by someone with Absolute Pitch that by reputation tunes to suit his inner ear and not the rest of the world. It was not obvious when they weren’t playing the same notes, but when they were it sure did sound wrong, but probably only to me.

Afterword I got to thinking what I could have done different. Should I have researched how the lead guitar and bass guitar tuned and tried to match it somehow and then charge quadruple to pay for the research, the custom tuning and the retuning to ET? Or maybe tune EBVT III that really doesn’t ever sound right to me anyway so that I cannot quite put my finger on what is wrong? Like what a drywaller might do with a ceiling that is out of whack. Put enough texture on it to keep the eye from noticing the flaws.

Well, I just don’t think that way. I tune ET and make no excuses.
_________________________
Jeff Deutschle
Part-Time Tuner
Who taught the first chicken how to peck?

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#1417841 - 04/15/10 11:24 AM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Mark R.]
Bill Bremmer RPT Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/21/02
Posts: 3039
Loc: Madison, WI USA
Mark,

What I proposed was a study on the Piano Forum of pianists listening and evaluating, not a thread in which I would participate at all. Thanks for your comment that you didn't find much that was objectionable but your very comment shows that you come from the side of the issue where anything but ET would be considered objectionable and therefore wrong. If the temperament were unequal enough that you would notice something, the only thing that you would notice would be something disturbing to your sensibilities and therefore, it would be wrong.

It is OK with me if some technicians don't like the EBVT III but what I find is that the opinion is always a pre-determined one. I really think that in most cases, the people that have scrutinized what they have heard so carefully (with the idea already in mind that it will be unacceptable), find descriptive words that go far beyond what is really there.

Let me draw a comparison: A person that passes the temperament and midrange portions of the PTG tuning exam both with a score of 100 is rare. That means that most aural tuning of ET has some sort of deviation in it. A person can still pass that exam with a total of 15 cents worth of error (deviation)in the temperament and even more in the midrange. Such people who do are usually professional piano technicians. Among those who only tune aurally but who barely pass that exam are still able to please their customers. Otherwise, they could not remain in business.

Indeed, there are some who tune aurally, please their customers but even after repeated attempts, do not pass that exam. The EBVT III contains a total 0f 16.8 cents worth of deviation from ET. When plus versus minus deviation is considered, there is only 12.8. I submit that if one of these people were to put a recording of a piano for comments, those who instantly come up with harsh criticism of the EBVT III would not have the same kind of comment about the flawed attempt at ET. Indeed, what I truly believe that if the recordings which are identified as the EBVT III had not been so identified, those who criticize it so harshly would have never noticed. They may have even praised what they heard.

So, it is not that I mind criticism, I see it for what it is: a rejection of the idea itself. If I had approached the artist for whom I worked last Friday, for example and asked him if he would like to try an unequal temperament or a non-standard tuning, the answer would surely have been, "No". Instead, I never even saw him before he arrived on stage to perform. He played the piano and clearly liked what he heard and took it upon himself to say so publicly. How could it be that he would have an opinion that was so completely different than Isaac's, for example? Why did he not, after rehearsing before the show, ask me to "correct" the tuning? He did (through the house director) ask me to fix the pedal squeak but also commented that the tuning was fine. Why didn't he notice what Isaac or any of the others notice? Why did he instead, actually like what he heard if it is so objectionable?

So, don't take what I say as being defensive. I am only trying to point out that the offense is fabricated and disingenuous.
_________________________
Bill Bremmer RPT
Madison WI USA
www.billbremmer.com

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#1417861 - 04/15/10 11:43 AM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT]
UnrightTooner Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/13/08
Posts: 4791
Loc: Bradford County, PA
Originally Posted By: Bill Bremmer RPT

.....

So, it is not that I mind criticism, I see it for what it is: a rejection of the idea itself.

.....


So, don't take what I say as being defensive. I am only trying to point out that the offense is fabricated and disingenuous.


Wow! No wonder you do not tolerate the opinions of others.
_________________________
Jeff Deutschle
Part-Time Tuner
Who taught the first chicken how to peck?

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#1418024 - 04/15/10 03:59 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: UnrightTooner]
Bill Bremmer RPT Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/21/02
Posts: 3039
Loc: Madison, WI USA
Originally Posted By: UnrightTooner

Well, I just don’t think that way. I tune ET and make no excuses.


You make my point, Jeff. The ET only crowd essentially says to performing musicians, "I am right, you are wrong".
_________________________
Bill Bremmer RPT
Madison WI USA
www.billbremmer.com

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#1418053 - 04/15/10 04:37 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT]
BDB Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 20780
Loc: Oakland
I have only once performing musician specifically ask for a temperament, and that was on a harpsichord. He liked it, I did not, but I did not say he was wrong.

I tune equal temperament because I prefer it on pianos. I have never had a musician complain about it. If they want something else, they have to tell me explicitly what they want, and I will give it to them if I can, but that has never happened. So tell me, Mr. Bremmer, how am I saying to performing musicians that they are wrong? For that matter, is it not far more likely that you are telling performing musicians who may prefer equal temperament that they are wrong?
_________________________
Semipro Tech

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#1418078 - 04/15/10 05:21 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: BDB]
Cinnamonbear Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/09/10
Posts: 3745
Loc: Rockford, IL
I'm wondering how many performers even know they have a choice?
_________________________
I may not be fast,
but at least I'm slow.

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#1418094 - 04/15/10 05:54 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT]
alfredo capurso Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/10/07
Posts: 1054
Loc: Sicily - Italy

Hello,

Bill you write:

..."The EBVT III contains a total 0f 16.8 cents worth of deviation from ET. When plus versus minus deviation is considered, there is only 12.8. I submit that if one of these people were to put a recording of a piano for comments, those who instantly come up with harsh criticism of the EBVT III would not have the same kind of comment about the flawed attempt at ET. Indeed, what I truly believe that if the recordings which are identified as the EBVT III had not been so identified, those who criticize it so harshly would have never noticed. They may have even praised what they heard."...

Indeed, I enjoyed some of the EBVT samples that have been posted. In my opinion, and listening "musical", EBVT sounds quite close to the ET I can talk about, and generally speacking EBVT can sound better than many quasi-ET? failed in reverse well.

(O) This, together with its ETD tuneability, can be thought and proposed as a respectable and satisfactory tuning.

Then, things get difficult on some other issues: today a temperament has to offer a shareable reason, and this reason can not be only a "label" like UT, Well, non-equal, ET or what so ever, nor can that reason be "all my customers love it", simply because most of us could say the same: how good, my customer loves my tunings (check dentists, I guess each one of us can suggest a very good one). Customers are not pro-tuners, meaning that we may have higher standards and a different sensitivity threshold.

Also running ET down and wanting to establish a supremacy through sticky clichés or brain hammering or prosaic words does not help either.

And, an ET world against you may be only an unfortunate projection of yours. I'd rather distinguish my source of satisfaction from a call to arms. One point could be "let's enjoy our tuning".

Regards, a.c.
_________________________
alfredo

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#1418095 - 04/15/10 05:55 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Cinnamonbear]
Grandpianoman Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/12/05
Posts: 2258
Loc: Portland, Oregon
BDB, if your musicians had never heard their piano in a different temperament, how would they know to ask for it.

As far as my experience with EBVT III is concerned, and being a professional musician, I did not know what I was missing with EBVT III until I actually heard it on my piano. Perhaps the same can be said of your clients.

If I were a pro-tuner, I would want to explore any and all ways to improve what I do. What might be interesting, would be to tune 1 or 2 of your clients pianos in EBVT III without telling them..see what their reactions are.....you might be surprised at the results.




Edited by grandpianoman (04/15/10 07:09 PM)

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#1418114 - 04/15/10 06:41 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Grandpianoman]
BDB Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 20780
Loc: Oakland
Originally Posted By: grandpianoman
BDB, if your musicians had never heard their piano in a different temperament, how they would know to ask for it.

As far as my experience with EBVT III is concerned, and being a professional musician, I did not know what I was missing with EBVT III until I actually heard it on my piano. Perhaps the same can be said of your clients.

If I were a pro-tuner, I would want to explore any and all ways to improve what I do. What might be interesting, would be to tune 1 or 2 of your clients pianos in EBVT III without telling them..see what their reactions are.....you might be surprised at the results.


Are you willing to pay me for this?

You are of course assuming that pianos that I tune do not sound better than what you are used to. That could very well be an unwarranted assumption.
_________________________
Semipro Tech

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#1418130 - 04/15/10 07:06 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: BDB]
Grandpianoman Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/12/05
Posts: 2258
Loc: Portland, Oregon
BDB, I am not assuming that at all. I think I can assume however, that the pianos you tune sound great because you are successful and in business. You must be doing something right.

I was responding to your statement that you prefer ET, so you tune your clients pianos in ET. That's perfectly fine. My suggestion was to push the envelope and expose your clients, who probably have never heard EBVT III on their pianos, to a different way of tuning, and in doing so, they might like it better than ET, then again they may not. What would you have to lose in trying that? If...they do like it better, you have gained their respect even more.

Perhaps a better and less expensive way to go so as to not impact your business, would be for you to tune your own piano in EBVT III when you have some free time, and see if it's something that would appeal to your clients.

In closing, I am not suggesting that what you do is inferior to EBVT III, I am just saying to maybe explore outside the 'norm'.

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#1418162 - 04/15/10 08:23 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Grandpianoman]
Bill Bremmer RPT Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/21/02
Posts: 3039
Loc: Madison, WI USA
Thanks GP. I can use the same arguments the ET only guys use. Nobody ever asked me for ET. My clients like the way I tune the piano and I like the way the piano sounds the way I tune it. I wouldn't want to risk having to tune the piano back to the EBVT III after somebody says they liked the way I used to tune it better. Who is going to pay me for that? This ET thing was just some theoretical experimental tuning by some mad scientist named Helmholtz who worked out a bunch of numbers on paper but a lot of people were suckered into it because it sounded like a good idea. No matter how people tried to describe how to tune it, hardly anybody could ever get it right. A guy named Jorgensen wrote a big book on it all, thicker than all the books on ET combined! I'm going with the solid research, not some experiment! We have to have a tuning style that works best for all music, since we don't know what the pianist will play. The EBVT III does work for all music but ET ruins a lot of it. Saps the energy right out of it! ET goes against the way that tuning was done throughout all music history until people started promoting this experimental thing that I'm just not buying! Everything sounds wrong to me when I hear it! I'm sticking with what works for me and has worked since 1992! A lot of other technicians and musicians agree with me on this too. I'm playing it safe!
_________________________
Bill Bremmer RPT
Madison WI USA
www.billbremmer.com

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#1418287 - 04/16/10 03:31 AM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT]
alfredo capurso Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/10/07
Posts: 1054
Loc: Sicily - Italy
Bill, you write:

..."This ET thing was just some theoretical experimental tuning by some mad scientist named Helmholtz who worked out a bunch of numbers on paper...

Mad scientist? Are you talking about Hermann von Helmholtz?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hermann_von_Helmholtz

You write:...but a lot of people were suckered into it because it sounded like a good idea."...

That is your opinion, does it justify this war of yours?

..."No matter how people tried to describe how to tune it, hardly anybody could ever get it right."...

Today things go differently, anybody can tune what ever he/she likes, aurally or with an ETD.

..."A guy named Jorgensen wrote a big book on it all, thicker than all the books on ET combined!"...

Thicker? what do you mean?

..."I'm going with the solid research, not some experiment!"...

To me, it seems that you are happily going with a bunch of ETD numbers, a bunch of cents deviation what from? ET. And as I say it can work, and more, anyone can play with an ETD, add or sottract some 0.nth cents and call his/her own temperament what ever they like. Nothing wrong with that, actually very democratic indeed, quasi-ET variants for all tastes. Then, no need to fight a war.

..."We have to have a tuning style that works best for all music, since we don't know what the pianist will play. The EBVT III does work for all music but ET ruins a lot of it. Saps the energy right out of it!"...

A tuning style that works best? Personal opinions and preferences only do not allow you to state that, so that sounds strange.

..."ET goes against the way that tuning was done throughout all music history until people started promoting this experimental thing that I'm just not buying!"...

Do you mean: since "people started promoting this experimental thing" music and music history has stopped? This to me sounds very odd thinking. Out of your own experience, you approach ET as a threat, but ET has made and is making history, and it has evolved too...if only you wanted to know more.

..."Everything sounds wrong to me when I hear it!"...

Really? You did not say that about my tuning, could you tell Stopper when you heard his tunings?

..."I'm sticking with what works for me and has worked since 1992!"...

Fair enough, this sounds reasonable. But all the rest you wrote?

Regards, a.c.



Edited by alfredo capurso (04/16/10 03:37 AM)
_________________________
alfredo

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#1418317 - 04/16/10 07:12 AM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT]
UnrightTooner Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/13/08
Posts: 4791
Loc: Bradford County, PA
Originally Posted By: Bill Bremmer RPT
Originally Posted By: UnrightTooner

Well, I just don’t think that way. I tune ET and make no excuses.


You make my point, Jeff. The ET only crowd essentially says to performing musicians, "I am right, you are wrong".


Yes Bill, I understand that when someone says they think differently that you take it to mean they are saying you are wrong and they are right. But when you say that I am wrong and you are right, I cannot take it to mean that you are saying that you think differently.

Stating opinions and making judgments is not the same thing and they are not interchangeable. When you learn to truly respect other people’s opinions you can have more productive conversations.
_________________________
Jeff Deutschle
Part-Time Tuner
Who taught the first chicken how to peck?

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#1418367 - 04/16/10 09:28 AM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: UnrightTooner]
Bill Bremmer RPT Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/21/02
Posts: 3039
Loc: Madison, WI USA
Jeff and Alfredo, I certainly do respect other people's opinions. However, when I read things like, "When people ask for a tuning, they expect just one thing like when you order a cup of coffee, you expect one thing"; or, "What if she wants it to sound like a piano, not an organ?", I see the same kind of "brick wall" facetious arguments I made.

Jeff, I continually see from you (regarding the EBVT III) things like, "Thank you for posting the examples of the EBVT III, now I know I will never try it", "I don't like the sound", "Everything sounds wrong to me". You have the right to that opinion, of course but don't I have the same right to say that about ET? If I do say the same thing, why does that mean I disrespect your opinion but such statements by you show no disrespect at all?

So here goes: I won't tune in ET because I don't like the sound. I won't even try ET because I have heard it and I don't like it. When I hear a piano in ET, everything sounds wrong to me. There. I said it and I mean it. I didn't say you were wrong to have your opinion about it or wrong to tune in ET. I just said that I don't like it. So, how is that any more disrespectful of your opinion than what you said? It is only disrespectful in your mind because in your mind, you are right and I am wrong.

In the example you gave of tuning a piano at a show and noticing that there was a tuning problem with the bass and guitar, rather than intervening, particularly since these were student musicians, you set yourself above them. You were right, they were wrong. You tuned the piano "right" and the fact that they were wrong was their problem and you wouldn't lift a finger to do anything about it. The only "right" tuning was the proverbial "each pitch unequivocally equidistant from the other" ala Isacoff. Only that makes music, in your opinion. Any other opinion is wrong and just to have another opinion is disrespectful of your opinion.

Well, I do happen to have a different opinion about what makes music from the piano sound its best and I would have helped the guitarist and bassist make their instruments compatible with it as I have done on many occasions. I would not have taken the condescending attitude that I tuned the piano "right" and make no apologies for it.

Alfredo, obviously what I said about Helmholtz was satire.
_________________________
Bill Bremmer RPT
Madison WI USA
www.billbremmer.com

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#1418395 - 04/16/10 10:06 AM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT]
UnrightTooner Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/13/08
Posts: 4791
Loc: Bradford County, PA
Bill:

The guitarists were not students, they were semi-professional musicians. Even if they were students, I would not stick my nose where it does not belong. It is up to their teachers to teach them how to tune their instruments.

But let’s take this a step further. Let’s say that they were students and the teachers had taught them to tune that way. Perhaps two different teachers taught them to tune two different ways. The question remains as to what could I do in such a situation. The best I could do is tune ET.

You say that you respect the opinions of others, but when I explain that “Well, I just don’t think that way.” you call it condescending. No, you do not recognize when someone is stating an opinion and therefore cannot respect what is stated. And yes, that is a judgment (shared by others) and not just an opinion.
_________________________
Jeff Deutschle
Part-Time Tuner
Who taught the first chicken how to peck?

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#1418441 - 04/16/10 11:30 AM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: UnrightTooner]
BDB Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 20780
Loc: Oakland
It would take me months of study to begin to do an adequate job tuning a new temperament; even longer if it is one only vaguely explained. That is because I only do professional-level tunings. To devote that kind of effort for dubious results is more than I am willing to do, particularly on the basis of a bunch of recordings of out-of-tune, bad-sounding pianos, or the word of someone who cannot get a piano to stay in tune for more than a couple of days. The hacks and the amateurs can do that.

How many concert-level tuners have any of you convinced to tune in this temperament? How many commercial recordings? Any? If the advantages are so great, there should be plenty of them.
_________________________
Semipro Tech

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#1418468 - 04/16/10 12:44 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: BDB]
Grandpianoman Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/12/05
Posts: 2258
Loc: Portland, Oregon
I see BDB, "months of study" you say for such a professional tuner as yourself. Well, of course no one would want you to spend "months of study" to be able to tune, at least your piano, in a different temperament, after all, you are a professional tuner and you do professional level tunings.... time is money. Far be it from me, who I guess in your book is some kind of "hack", to suggest to you to try a different approach.

I have never asked you to take my word about anything. It was you that took it upon yourself to share your displeasure about EBVT III and now, my piano, tuning, and recordings of EBVT III. That's fine, you are entitled to your opinion.

Btw, thanks for your encouragement in learning to tune better. I am sure glad you are the ONLY professional tuner on this forum that treats "hacks" and "amateur" tuners like this..if you were not, I would not continue to post here on PW, and by the way, I will continue to post here on PW, my journey with my recordings, using EBVT III, and my continued experience in trying to learn to tune my piano better. I don't mind criticism if it's constructive.

It's not worth it for me to try and defend my recordings, tunings etc for someone like you, suffice it to say I have nothing but positive emails, msgs and postings here on PW regarding the beautiful tone, timbre and the overall sound of my M&H BB.

Your attitude clearly demonstrates you have a major bias, and, a major problem dealing with other ways of tuning a piano, not to mention your attitude towards "hacks" and "amateurs".

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#1418485 - 04/16/10 01:15 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: UnrightTooner]
pppat Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/09/08
Posts: 1195
Loc: Jakobstad, Finland
Hi all,

this thread's still busy! smile

I tuned a Yamaha C7 yesterday, the (classical) piano player in an upcoming concert wanted it raised to 442 Hz from 440. He said something like "It's in tune, but too low for the flute recital".

So, I went there to pitch-raise it. I played it upon arrival, and it sounded good, except for a midrange stretch that was too wild for me. Then I put the strip mutes in, and checked ascending 3rds.

They were not progressive at all. It was not EBVT III, but neither was it by any means ET. It wasn't reverse well either, because C major was as calm as could be.

The tuner who tuned the piano a while ago is the #1 concert tuner in this area. It was a great lesson for me. Listening with non-tuner ears, the piano sang beautifully. Analyzing it with strip mutes inserted, it was all mathematically wrong.

Jeff: Whether you notice it or not, you ARE far from objective, as is Bill. And my question is who ever asked for objectivity in this matter?

Bill is passionate and undoubtedly crosses the line repeatedly, but who draws that very line? I would get crazy much sooner than him.

There is nothing automatically right about preferring the mathematically correct mainstream. There is no correct center from where deviations will take place. There is a mathematically center where everything is even, yes. But that doesn't necessarily make it the right end to aim for. In fact, to me (subjective as any opinion should be), that center is sterile and rather unnatural.

Life in itself is uneven. Few, if any of us, are centered. To be right on the spot would mean summoning all human deviations, becoming neutral. That indeed is the spot in the middle, but that spot ain't a sweet spot to me.

Maybe this is what I like about EBVT III. There is something humanly imperfect about it. Light shining through the cracks, to loosely quote Leonard Cohen.

I really like Bill's approach, because it stems from a musical point of view, and from his passion for music. This goes for his way of tempering 5ths in EBVT III, for his mindless octaves, and for his encouraging belief that ET (or temperaments in general) is no mathematical gift reserved for the selected few - that all of us, through his helpful demystifying of the magics, can reach it with our average ear, just listening.
_________________________
Patrick Wingren, RPT

Senior Lecturer (jazz piano, composition, music theory, conducting) @ Novia University of Applied Sciences, Jakobstad, Finland
- - - -
Dedicated to learning the craft of tuning. Getting better.

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#1418494 - 04/16/10 01:34 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: BDB]
pppat Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/09/08
Posts: 1195
Loc: Jakobstad, Finland
Originally Posted By: BDB
It would take me months of study to begin to do an adequate job tuning a new temperament; even longer if it is one only vaguely explained.

Well, you can have your opinions about EBVT III, but please don't say that it's vaguely explained. It's one of the most clear and simple tuning sequences I've ever encountered.

No doubt it will take a while to do adequately, but why the rush? ET doesn't get under your hands over a night, either.

Funny thing is that many passionate people around here post recordings. Isaac, Alfredo, Glen, Gadzaar, Grandpianoman, me myself - we all do that. Others, again, place themselves in the tuning supreme court seat. Although I respect you much and am grateful of your help in my own tuning journey, I have no idea whatsoever of how you tune. I just know you from your critique of other tuners tunings, and you seem to be picky and very determined of what the piano should sound like.

So, if you care about this in a non-bashing way, why not post some non-dubious ETs of yours? I'd really like to hear what a piano tuned by you might reveal.



Edited by pppat (04/16/10 01:34 PM)
_________________________
Patrick Wingren, RPT

Senior Lecturer (jazz piano, composition, music theory, conducting) @ Novia University of Applied Sciences, Jakobstad, Finland
- - - -
Dedicated to learning the craft of tuning. Getting better.

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#1418521 - 04/16/10 02:09 PM Re: My Piano in EBVT III [Re: pppat]
UnrightTooner Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/13/08
Posts: 4791
Loc: Bradford County, PA
Pat:

Of course opinions can be subjective. That is what preferences are, and it is obviously a preference when I say something sounds wrong to me.

As far as obtaining mathematically correctness, when considering a piano's iH, it is not a simple thing to even decide what parameters to base a tuning on. Having progressive audible RBIs is just the start.

But I cannot agree with you when you say ”To be right on the spot would mean summoning all human deviations, becoming neutral.” It think more on the lines of: “Ah, but a man’s reach should exceed his grasp, or what’s a heaven for?” Robert Browning.
_________________________
Jeff Deutschle
Part-Time Tuner
Who taught the first chicken how to peck?

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