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#174023 - 03/01/04 01:28 PM C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
thomas Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/08/02
Posts: 40
Loc: Sausalito,California
The most recent supplement to Larry Fine's book says C. Bechstein has resusitated the Bechstein name,and plans to put it on some of their grands/uprights. Does anyone know the reason for this move? Will the Bechstein products be made elsewhere?

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#174024 - 03/01/04 03:06 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
JPM Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/24/03
Posts: 1010
Loc: NM, GE & Wash. DC
Thomas,

I don't have the latest supplement so I don't know in what context Fine states "C. Bechstein has resusitated the Bechstein name,and plans to put it on some of their grands/uprights".

By itself the comment does not make sense. Bechstein has always put the C. Bechstein name on its pianos.

Certainly the Bechstein Company is not in need of resusitation. They continue to be, as they always have been, a leading producer of top quality pianos in Europe. The company appears to be thriving. They modernized & expanded the factory in Saxony a few years ago and they continue establish new Bechstein Centers in Germany (two new ones added last year I think).

JP
_________________________
"Piano music should only be written for the Bechstein."
-- Claude Debussy

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#174025 - 03/01/04 04:07 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
thomas Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/08/02
Posts: 40
Loc: Sausalito,California
Maybe I was not clear: C.Bechstein is putting "Bechstein" on some of its pianos and " C. Bechstein" on others. My question is will the Bechstein pianos be made in the same factory as the C.Bechstein pianos? The price difference suggested in Larry Fine's supplement between the two names is sigificant.

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#174026 - 03/01/04 06:27 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
Spiel mit mir Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/25/03
Posts: 35
Thomas,
It is my understanding that the W.Hoffman line is going to be relabled as "Bechstein" ,while the "C.Bechstein" line will remain unchanged.

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#174027 - 03/01/04 06:35 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14138
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Bechstein apparently displayed their new series grands made entirely in Korea called simply "Bechstein" during this year's NAMM.

[escaped me, didn't see it... \:o ]

The pianos to be continued to be built in Germany in future will apparently all be called "C.Bechstein".

Someone else out there to confirm this?

norbert
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

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#174028 - 03/01/04 06:56 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
Gene Grant Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/13/04
Posts: 95
Nobert,

I believe that all Bechstein products are and will continue to be made in Germany, but I will check with the factory rep and post tomorrow. For what it is worth, I do have one of the new Bechstein pianos on my showroom floor, and it does have the distinctive Bechstein sound.

The new brochure for Bechstein has several pages on the differences between the two names. A section of the text reads “For the realization of the new BECHSTEIN brand some simplifications were made in conjunction to modern technology, materials, and other pertinent resources available internationally, thereby reducing costs in the previously very involved, strictly hand crafted production procedures. All BECHSTEIN parts and their elaborations are specified and repeatedly tested by the C. Bechstein Master Piano Makers and Engineers. The main emphasis for the new BECHSTEIN pianos focuses on excellent playability and tone, and, as is usual for pianos stemming from the C. Bechstein tradition – longevity.” The text continues for almost three pages emphasizing how the two brands are very similar.

I hope this helped.

Gene
_________________________
Gene Grant

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#174029 - 03/02/04 06:39 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
thomas Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/08/02
Posts: 40
Loc: Sausalito,California
From a marketing standpoint does it not seem odd that a manufacturer of great pianos would allow most of its name to be placed on products made outside its factory? Would Steinway delete the "and Sons" from its name on pianos made elsewhere ?(instead of using the Boston or Essex names)

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#174030 - 03/02/04 06:46 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14138
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Gene:

These are a lot of [and long!] fancy words for a simple question:

Where[/b] are the [presumably 'new'] Bechsteins made?

[Nobody's throwing stones...... \:\) ]

norbert
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

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#174031 - 03/02/04 06:57 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
lb Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 1731
Loc: Indiana

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#174032 - 03/02/04 07:03 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
Axtremus Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/03
Posts: 6180
 Quote:
"For the realization of the new BECHSTEIN brand some simplifications were made in conjunction to modern technology, materials, and other pertinent resources available internationally, thereby reducing costs in the previously very involved, strictly hand crafted production procedures. All BECHSTEIN parts and their elaborations are specified and repeatedly tested by the C. Bechstein Master Piano Makers and Engineers. The main emphasis for the new BECHSTEIN pianos focuses on excellent playability and tone, and, as is usual for pianos stemming from the C. Bechstein tradition – longevity." The text continues for almost three pages emphasizing how the two brands are very similar.
Great! "Modern technology, materials, and other pertinent resources available internationally" have finally caught up to the German's "very involved, strictly hand crafted production procedures." They are so similar that everyone should just go buy the cheaper one. Who would have thunk an alphabet C and a period would cost so much! ;\)

Can't wait to find out who actually build those pianos without the "C." Must have some really impressive automation technology to pull it off! \:D
_________________________
www.PianoRecital.org -- my piano recordings

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#174033 - 03/02/04 07:40 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
lb Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 1731
Loc: Indiana

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#174034 - 03/02/04 10:47 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
AKindWord Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/28/04
Posts: 300
Loc: Kentucky/Tennessee
I played a wonderful "C. Bechstein" upright today. So please don't think I'm Bechstein bashing but...

"For the realization of the new BECHSTEIN brand some simplifications were made in conjunction to modern technology, materials, and other pertinent resources available internationally, thereby reducing costs in the previously very involved, strictly hand crafted production procedures."
[/b]

Isn't this a fancy way of saying that they are going to mass-produce lesser quality pianos, perhaps even in Asia, and usurp Bechstein's good name in order to sell them? They say they are using "modern technology and materials" and "reducing costs in the previously very involved, strictly hand crafted production procedures". It sounds to me like a sugar coated way of saying they are going to build the "Bechstein [- the C.]", to much lower standards.

Any thoughts on this anyone?
_________________________
I'm awake! I'm awake!

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#174035 - 03/03/04 01:44 AM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
katie_dup1 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/27/03
Posts: 1838
Loc: Canada
Well, this thread is informative .... I 'll be paying closer attention to the fallboard if I ever get close to these pianos ..... .

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#174036 - 03/03/04 09:41 AM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
JPM Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/24/03
Posts: 1010
Loc: NM, GE & Wash. DC
“For the realization of the new BECHSTEIN brand some simplifications were made in conjunction to modern technology, materials, and other pertinent resources available internationally, thereby reducing costs in the previously very involved, strictly hand crafted production procedures."[/b]

Something was lost in the translation. The word "compromises" should have been used instead of "simplifications". At least that is what it seems like to me if the information I just read is correct. I'll ask the Bechstein people what the real deal is when I go to the Musikmesse at the end of the month.

If this is true it sounds like a potential marketing disaster in the making. IMHO, Bechstein ought never associate its name with a 2nd or 3rd tier piano. Rather, they should continue to follow Steinway's example with their Boston and Essex line of pianos. Say they helped design it, sell it, but not put the Steinway name on it. That's what Bechstein was doing with the Zimmermann & Hoffmann lines.

I predict if they go down this path that in a couple of years, consumers will be scratching their heads trying to figure out the difference between a C. Bechstein and Bechstein. It will be like trying to figure out the difference between a K. Kawai and and Kawai. But at least with these two flavors of Kawais, you know that the same company builds them.

As a Bechstein owner, this news is not good. I think it is most disturbing. \:\(

It makes me wonder if the company is still committed to making pianos of the highest quality.

I hope someone from Bechstein monitors this site and will address these concerns.

JP
_________________________
"Piano music should only be written for the Bechstein."
-- Claude Debussy

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#174037 - 03/03/04 10:21 AM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
Chris W1 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/26/01
Posts: 915
Loc: Boston
For those looking at used Bechstein (not C. Bechstein), I think they were still all German made. AFAIK, the Academy series that they once put out was priced more cheaply, dropping the "C.". It otherwise, was all Bechstein, sort of like Bosendorfer's Conservatory series is still all Bosie.

Larry can true this up, but I think its surprising and sad that a top tier manufacturer would "self-stencil" their reputation like that.

While we're on the subject, that C. Bechstein B-208 the Piano Mill had was marked up 24k when it went to Steinert's. They have subsequently arranged to have it shipped back to a Bechstein facility here in the states. At least it was good not to see it become a neglected, negative sell, victum against Steinway.

Chris
_________________________
Amateur At Large

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#174038 - 03/03/04 11:52 AM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
kenny Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 7051
Didn't Samick buy Bechstein?

http://www.samickusa.com/smc/SMC-Newsletter-May-2003.pdf

If Samick is making the pianos in Asia and slapping the name Bechstein on them I think that is lowering the bar.

Names like Bachendorfer, and putting names like Knabe and Chickering on fallboards citing old world tradition "Since 1874" blah blah blah was deceptive enough.

C or no C, putting the actual name "Bechstin" on the fallboard of a piano made in Asia heralds a new era of Piano Marketing Sleaze.

Please tell me I am wrong.

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#174039 - 03/03/04 12:05 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14138
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Karl Schulze [owner of Bechstein] told me at last NAMM that the two companies,intertwined as they may be at this time, almost parted way last year.

Both cultures happen to be of a rather stubborn kind......... \:D

Apparently things have "worked out" since and we could be in for a surprise.

Maybe it's the Koreans teaching the Germans now a thing or two.....the world's changing and you'll never know what's coming up next......

I know that the only sure thing from Germany these days is the next factory closure due to another of them damn "holidays" there!

norbert
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

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#174040 - 03/04/04 12:13 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
thomas Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/08/02
Posts: 40
Loc: Sausalito,California
I never accepted the "investment" sales pitch,and have no desire or intent to sell, but I wonder if my recently purchased new C.Bechstein grand will be worth less now that this particular model is being made in Korea and sold under the new "Bechstein' line?(Per Larry Fine's supp some grands with duplex scales will continue to be made in Berlin while the "unenhanced" models will not.)

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#174041 - 03/04/04 12:21 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
Matt G. Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/01
Posts: 3789
Loc: Plainfield, IL
 Quote:
Originally posted by JPM:
This sounds like a potential marketing disaster in the making. IMHO, Bechstein ought never associate its name with a 2nd or 3rd tier piano. Rather, they should continue to follow Steinway's example with their Boston and Essex line of pianos. Say they helped design it, sell it, but not put the Steinway name on it. That's what Bechstein was doing with the Zimmermann & Hoffmann lines.

I predict if they go down this path that in a couple of years, consumers will be scratching their heads trying to figure out the difference between a C. Bechstein and Bechstein.[/b]
My thoughts exactly. Very, VERY bad move on Bechstein's part. \:\(
_________________________
Sacred cows make the best hamburger. - Clemens

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#174042 - 03/04/04 01:15 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
Axtremus Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/03
Posts: 6180
According to the PDF file linked by kenny, Samick has majority control over Bechstein. So this "Very, VERY bad move" is Samick's move. Now, selling a majority stake to Samick, that was Bechstein's move (at least it's one Bechstein agreed to).

Incidentally, why do you think it's a bad move?
_________________________
www.PianoRecital.org -- my piano recordings

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#174043 - 03/04/04 01:26 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
Matt G. Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/22/01
Posts: 3789
Loc: Plainfield, IL
 Quote:
Originally posted by Axtremus:
Incidentally, why do you think it's a bad move? [/b]
I think it's a bad move from a consumer viewpoint, by cashing in on a well-respected name being applied to a product which in few ways resembles the product that earned the reputation. This will undoubtedly cause confusion for piano shoppers. I also think it's an open invitation for deception on the part of unscrupulous salespeople, who might point to the two nearly identical marques and proclaim them "practically the same thing" despite the many differences.
_________________________
Sacred cows make the best hamburger. - Clemens

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#174044 - 03/04/04 01:53 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14138
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
lb gave me recently a lecture here about that "damn arrogant German-imperialistic-hegemonistic world domination" type of thinking and the hang up about their own - and widely spread - assumption of "superiority" in anything they make.

It's for you good folks here now to finally accept this message and start some serious re-thinking accordingly.....

norbert \:D
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

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#174045 - 03/04/04 04:04 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
lb Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 1731
Loc: Indiana

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#174046 - 03/04/04 06:33 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
AKindWord Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/28/04
Posts: 300
Loc: Kentucky/Tennessee
I hate to take sides, but I have to chime in here and simply make the comment that, based on all I've observed so far,...


Germans DO build the best pianos to be found anywhere in the world!!! The highest performance, the most meticulous workmanship, and the finest selection of materials. As far as pianos goes, they are simply the best.

I don't know about any other products they make (heck, mechanically a Toyota is statistically more reliable than a Mercedes).

But as for pianos, very few does it better.

-AKindWord
_________________________
I'm awake! I'm awake!

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#174047 - 03/04/04 07:22 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
Axtremus Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/03
Posts: 6180
 Quote:
Quoting AKindWord:
I don't know about any other products they make (heck, mechanically a Toyota is statistically more reliable than a Mercedes).
Actually, a case could probably be made that the Japanese-built pianos are, from a mechanical viewpoint, statistically more reliable than German-built pianos (at least in the first two or three decades). I don't remember seeing anyone complain about their new Japanese-made Yamaha or Kawai have sticky keys, but I have heard such complains even for high-end German pianos. BUT, those who pursue a "performance piano" generally won't let a slightly inferior "mechanical reliability factor" put them off. There is MUCH MORE to a piano than mechanical reliability.

That's just my casual observation. Technicians who survice Japanese pianos and German pianos, do you see a STATISTICALLY SIGNIFICANT discrepency between the MECHANICAL RELIABILITY of the two?
_________________________
www.PianoRecital.org -- my piano recordings

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#174048 - 03/04/04 08:07 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14138
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
lb:

Fair question!

No,I would NOT take anything on that claims to be specifically "German".....but is not.

Totally, lock-stock&barrell,true, blue, arrogant and all! \:D

To do this,would not only serve to degrade the genuine stuff
I actually have here [am also getting other lines in... ;\) ] but also happens to go against my very own [arrogant...] 'blood lines'.

[On top of this, I do believe - perhaps erroneously - that my customers are actually special,intelligent and smart enough to hear,touch and feel the difference.]

Just imagine,you're a good'ol Yank living and operating a motorcycle dealership somewhere in Sweden and sell "Hurley Davidson" that only you know are made in China ?? \:D

P.S. None of the genuine German makers I know are getting anything done in China except more dealers for themselves.

Unless you tell us otherwise.

I hope this anwsers for now and I'm glad we're talking again somewhat.....er...

.......decently!

[half-way..... ;\) ]

norbert
[quit smoking....for now!]
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

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#174049 - 03/05/04 09:18 AM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
kenny Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 7051
 Quote:
Originally posted by Gene Grant:
Nobert,

I believe that all Bechstein products are and will continue to be made in Germany, but I will check with the factory rep and post tomorrow. For what it is worth, I do have one of the new Bechstein pianos on my showroom floor, and it does have the distinctive Bechstein sound.


I hope this helped.

Gene [/b]
I was waiting for your post, what did the Bechstein factory rep say?

You are an authorized Bechstein dealer and you thought that an apparently Korean-made piano on your floor was made in Germany?

Is Samick telling its Bechstein dealers to conceal the Korean origin of these pianos?
Or worse, actually telling the dealers these do not come from Korea?
If a customer asked you, "What country is this piano made in?" are you free to say, "Korea" ?




Sorry to put you on the spot here, and I understand as a dealer you are in a delicate situation and have to be careful what you say into this microphone, but if we civilians could read on Samick's own website that Samick is putting the Bechstien name on Korean pianos I sure hope they are telling the truth to the Bechstein dealers.

Please tell my suspicions are unfounded and that only the truth is getting to the customers.

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#174050 - 03/05/04 11:44 AM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
Calin Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 418
Loc: Bucharest
I'm also worried about Bechstein putting their name on a lower quality product. How do they think that a single letter can make a difference - in the eyes of the buyer - between the top quality piano and a lesser one?
This is only going to confuse people and do no good to Bechstein's image.
They should simply use another name on the Asian-made pianos and they could add the "designed by Bechstein" label or whatever.
At least, that's the way I see it...

Calin
_________________________
Calin

The Bechstein piano discussion group: http://launch.groups.yahoo.com/group/bechstein/
The Schweighofer piano site: http://schweighofer.tripod.com

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#174051 - 03/05/04 12:00 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
kenny Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 7051
Does Samick lurk here?
Do they care?

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#174052 - 03/05/04 12:20 PM Re: C.Bechstein vs. Bechstein
Calin Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 418
Loc: Bucharest
Maybe we should write some e-mails about this to Bechstein...

What do you people think?

Calin
_________________________
Calin

The Bechstein piano discussion group: http://launch.groups.yahoo.com/group/bechstein/
The Schweighofer piano site: http://schweighofer.tripod.com

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