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#1851068 - 02/24/12 08:39 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
FilthyRichPianoDad Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/22/12
Posts: 14
Loc: Philadelphia, PA
I have assumed during my entire search process that the prices on the the Blue Book of Pianos were more or less accurate. I know they are supposed to represent invoice pricing so I mentally build in a fair markup percentage across all brands and models equally. If this is not accurate, could someone illuminate me? If there is some secret 50% Fazioli groupon, could you get me a link? If talking about the actual prices of pianos is verboten on this forum, pretend like this post doesn't exist.

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#1851074 - 02/24/12 08:47 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: FilthyRichPianoDad]
jivemutha Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 528
Loc: Portland, OR
Originally Posted By: FilthyRichPianoDad
. . . If talking about the actual prices of pianos is verboten on this forum, pretend like this post doesn't exist.


Nope. Not verboten, and don't let dealers on pianoworld try to tell you otherwise. Many dealers are forbidden from discussing price in venues like this but there is no proscription against us buyers doing so.


Edited by jivemutha (02/24/12 08:47 PM)

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#1851077 - 02/24/12 08:54 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: FilthyRichPianoDad]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19099
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: FilthyRichPianoDad
I have assumed during my entire search process that the prices on the the Blue Book of Pianos were more or less accurate. I know they are supposed to represent invoice pricing so I mentally build in a fair markup percentage across all brands and models equally. If this is not accurate, could someone illuminate me?
I think the Piano Buyer in the left column considered far more up to date. Some have said that the Blue Book is very inaccurate. Most at PW don't seem to think the BB is a worthwhile source of information.

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#1851079 - 02/24/12 08:56 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
FilthyRichPianoDad Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/22/12
Posts: 14
Loc: Philadelphia, PA
So what do you think the all in cost of the following pianos:

Steinway C227
Fazioli F228
Shigeru Kawai SK7
Kawai RX7
Young Chang YP228
Estonia 225
Mason & Hamlin BB
Steinway B
August Förster 215
Grotian Concert
Bösendorfer 225

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#1851087 - 02/24/12 09:08 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: FilthyRichPianoDad]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19099
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: FilthyRichPianoDad
So what do you think the all in cost of the following pianos:

Steinway C227
Fazioli F228
Shigeru Kawai SK7
Kawai RX7
Young Chang YP228
Estonia 225
Mason & Hamlin BB
Steinway B
August Förster 215
Grotian Concert
Bösendorfer 225
Your question is answered in the Piano Buyer.

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#1851088 - 02/24/12 09:09 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
FilthyRichPianoDad Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/22/12
Posts: 14
Loc: Philadelphia, PA
Thank you so much pianoloverus. Huge help. Huge.

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#1851090 - 02/24/12 09:14 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: FilthyRichPianoDad]
jazzyprof Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/30/04
Posts: 2598
Loc: Ann Arbor, MI
Here's the Piano MatchMaker for you:
Piano MatchMaker
_________________________
"Playing the piano is my greatest joy...period."......JP

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#1851150 - 02/24/12 11:35 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
Jeff Clef Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/05/08
Posts: 4394
Loc: San Jose, CA
I've enjoyed your posts, Filthy and Snow. Nerve-wracking though it may be to peer through the fog, look under rocks in the forest for these hard-to-find but worthy makes, and really work hard to root out the truffles of information... nerve-wracking; still, you're in an enviable position. You have a real and legitimate excuse to go into piano stores and check out the wares to your heart's content. Some of us get a piano, yet go ahead and keep shopping anyway, though it's a somewhat guilty pleasure.

It doesn't seem to me that people who buy pianos (like the forum members) have anything against folks who have a few bucks, so don't worry about that.

Your story reminded me of a favorite book, Thad Carhart's The Piano Shop on the Left Bank. Part of his story is about finding a place in Paris where he can provide for his children's music education, in common with your piano search, and about his friendship with a local piano rebuilder and seller. Toward the end of the book he had a chance to go to Milan and visit the Fazioli factory, meeting the owner and taking home a piece of a soundboard as a souvenir.

I've re-read this book just for pleasure, several times. You might like it. He didn't buy the Faz, by the way; too much money, too special an instrument, too wonderful to waste on a player who could never live up to it. But in your position, I'd find it worth my while to have a look (unless you're burned out on shopping), since you love the engineering and specialness of the Shigeru.

PW's own Del Fandrich designed both of the Charles Walter grands, turning back to an instrument with the home music room, rather than the concert stage, in mind. Talk about hard to find--- but I'll bet your friend Two Snowflakes could make it happen.

All three (Shigeru, Fazioli, Walter) are very good examples of up-to-date piano design thought, but with different objectives, perspectives, and results. Still, it's genius-level work. I tried the CW but bought the RX, even though now I think the showroom was the wrong environment to hear the instrument properly... but that's a problem any piano shopper will face. Anyway, I'm happy with what I brought home.

I'd say your children are fortunate to have you, and you are fortunate to have such a good friend as Snow to help you.

You'll let us know, of course. Keep posting, we love these piano-shopping stories... though now that you're here, you've exchanged two snowflakes for a blizzard of them.
_________________________
Clef


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#1851162 - 02/25/12 12:14 AM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
Norbert Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 13975
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Quote:
Originally Posted By: FilthyRichPianoDad
So what do you think the all in cost of the following pianos:

Steinway C227
Fazioli F228
Shigeru Kawai SK7
Kawai RX7
Young Chang YP228
Estonia 225
Mason & Hamlin BB
Steinway B
August Förster 215
Grotian Concert
Bösendorfer 225


Quote:
Your question is answered in the Piano Buyer.


Piano Buyer doesn't answer this type of question.

Ears and fingers do.

Norbert wink


Edited by Norbert (02/25/12 12:17 AM)
_________________________
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Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

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#1851165 - 02/25/12 12:23 AM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
Norbert Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 13975
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Interestingly enough we had an almost identical case just little while ago.

The decision went sideways, even taking us by surprise.

Insider tip: none of the above....

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

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#1851171 - 02/25/12 12:30 AM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: pianoloverus]
jivemutha Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 528
Loc: Portland, OR
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
. . . the Piano Buyer . . . is considered far more up to date. Some have said that the Blue Book is very inaccurate. Most at PW don't seem to think the BB is a worthwhile source of information.


Great advice!

In the Piano Buyer, you have to read more than just the numbers. In the details Larry Fine helps interpret the numbers, which is important given that the MSRP are in many cases close to meaningless and the SMPs need to be interpreted with caution.

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#1851190 - 02/25/12 01:24 AM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: Norbert]
Wound up Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/04/12
Posts: 65
Norbert, Are you sure? I think I remember you mentioning that and the piano is in his revised list I think, If not what did you customer go for?!

@Furt, point taken

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#1851281 - 02/25/12 06:29 AM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
R_Dorothy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/11/11
Posts: 113
Loc: Paradigm City
I am going to agree with Norbert and say that ears and hands are the best judges. You really should have your daughter test drive the pianos on your list. No offense intended Piano Dad, but you should stick to logical factors in your decision making such as how much you're willing to spend and how big of a piano you can have in your home. There's only so much you can determine when you're shopping by brand.

Leave the alogical factors such as touch, tone, and overall performance/experience to the musician, your daughter. Who knows, maybe the piano would be that much more significant to her if she had a say in its purchase? A young aspiring musician that chooses a world-class instrument that speaks to her can have a positive effect and is a great opportunity. She's very blessed to have such a supportive father. Basically I am saying you should let your daughter choose. Who's the one spending hours and hours in isolated practice? I am sure you love the art and science of decision making. The PW threads, Piano Buyer, various manufacturer websites, shopping around dealers...it's all fun. But the musician should have some more weight on this decision.

If you wanted my initial, instinctive piece of advice:

Eff it, just go out and buy that Fazioli and call it a day. Shoot, you can even buy her a Shigeru Kawai and save the rest for piano lessons, music camp, and Juilliard.


Edited by R_Dorothy (02/25/12 06:37 AM)
_________________________
If you want love you must be love
But if you bleed love you will die love

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#1851291 - 02/25/12 06:55 AM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
belsha Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/23/10
Posts: 48
Loc: Paris, France
I think there are some very different issues at hand here. Is it about getting a suitable piano for your 10 year old daughter? Or about getting a great piano just for the sake of it?

If your daughters upright always falls out of tune, she would definitively need an upgrade. But does she really need a 7 foot grand, even a Fazioli, with just 2 years experience? Excuse me, but to my mind that just would be complete overkill. She will need at least 10 more years of intense practising to only start to appreciate all the sublety and power of such a piano. And she will have nothing left to desire, pianowise.... from an educational standpoint, buying a 7 foot Fazioli for a 10 yeard old near beginner doesn't seem a very clever idea to me. Get her a good, new, top of the line upright piano, or maybe a simple baby-grand, like a Yamaha C2. If at age 20, she brilliantly plays all 24 Chopin Etudes, THEN you can buy her a 228 Fazioli.She will then fully appreciate how lucky she is, since even then probably none of her peers will have such a wonderful piano.

Maybe, on the other hand, you just want to possses a fantastic piano. You would also would want that to be a good investment. In that case, forget the Shigerus and Estonias, and get a Hamburg Steinway or a Fazioli (I still think a good upright or small, moderately cheap grand would be better for your daughter).

You also wrongly assume hat the "perfect piano" has to be in the 7-foot range. Different manufacturers have different strengths: the Steinway C (227) for exemple is a notoriosly unloved piano... most pianists would agree that the slightly smaller Steinway B is a vastly superior piano (it's a question of design and balance).

So in a nutshell, if you want a status symbol, an investement, or simply own a work of art in its own right, buy a Hamburg Steinway B, a Fazioli 212 or 228, or possibly a Steingraeber 212.

If you want the best piano for your daughter, buy her a new Yamaha U2 (upright) or Yamaha C2 (small grand). Make her desire and deserve the greater pianos when she will have fully shown her talent (and hardwork). Kids can feel quite uneasy and even guilt-laden when they get things they feel they don't deserve and know other kids can't have, don't put that burden on your daughter too soon...
_________________________
1950 Hamburg Steinway Model D
1980 Hamburg Steinway Model B
"Galaxy Vintage D" on my laptop when travelling (amazing sample of the 1930 Steinway D at Bauer Tonstudios, Germany) Almost feels like home!

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#1851320 - 02/25/12 08:38 AM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
Wound up Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/04/12
Posts: 65

I tend to disagree about getting a cheaper piano to start out, I play guitar primarily and having an inspiring instrument can make the process more enjoyable from the first note__ Having experienced many of the finest guitars helps me pull certain sounds out of any guitar..



We each only have so many years on the planet, I would prefer if possible that my kids were able to enjoy the timbre of a fine instrument from the start. I grew up with a nice sounding Sohmer upright - I am so glad It was a nice sounding instrument -- It certainly shaped my ear for years to come.
I bought a fazioli for my family room and my kids are just 1 and 2 years old... I of course want it for my wife and I also, But to tell you the truth The Idea of those little kids playing their first years on an instrument like that will not only be a joy for me to hear them play but also I do beleive it will be a fine experience for them.

Now as to your advice to buy a cheaper piano and get the Fazioli later. Hmmm, I wonder how much cheaper they will be in 10 years... FRPD did mention that he does want to be aware of the price, IMO a piano is such a long lived purchase, Once you step into the 50k+ range you might as well get the one you want -- In this case the work of art bit applies, I think he should get a great piano and don't look back.

Also, I know both sides of the 'have the child decide' keep coming -- I do think a kid could hear the difference it is just too possible for them to make a mistake about which would be preferable for the long haul, It is possible that a person that age might lack the ability to hold the context in mind, I agree if she had more time on the piano it might make a difference, In this case the tone that will shape her sensibilites it is SO important I think FRPD should hire a pianist to demostrate his 3 favorites after they are preped properly and go with his gut-- If youngster was part of the party fine, But it should not be a pile of adult musical professionals standing by not helping retain a great piece___



Edited by Wound up (02/25/12 08:45 AM)

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#1851325 - 02/25/12 08:56 AM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: Norbert]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19099
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Norbert
Quote:
Originally Posted By: FilthyRichPianoDad
So what do you think the all in cost of the following pianos:

Steinway C227
Fazioli F228
Shigeru Kawai SK7
Kawai RX7
Young Chang YP228
Estonia 225
Mason & Hamlin BB
Steinway B
August Förster 215
Grotian Concert
Bösendorfer 225


Quote:
Your question is answered in the Piano Buyer.


Piano Buyer doesn't answer this type of question.

Ears and fingers do.

Norbert wink
The question was about the cost.

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#1851328 - 02/25/12 09:04 AM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: pianoloverus]
ClsscLib Online   content

Platinum Supporter until Jan 02 2013


Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 1597
Loc: Northern VA, U.S.
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Originally Posted By: Norbert
Quote:
Originally Posted By: FilthyRichPianoDad
So what do you think the all in cost of the following pianos:

Steinway C227
Fazioli F228
Shigeru Kawai SK7
Kawai RX7
Young Chang YP228
Estonia 225
Mason & Hamlin BB
Steinway B
August Förster 215
Grotian Concert
Bösendorfer 225


Quote:
Your question is answered in the Piano Buyer.


Piano Buyer doesn't answer this type of question.

Ears and fingers do.

Norbert wink
The question was about the cost.


Cost is one thing; value is different.
_________________________


"People may say I can't sing, but no one can ever say I didn't sing."

-- Florence Foster Jenkins

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#1851329 - 02/25/12 09:09 AM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: R_Dorothy]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19099
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: R_Dorothy
I am going to agree with Norbert and say that ears and hands are the best judges. You really should have your daughter test drive the pianos on your list. No offense intended Piano Dad, but you should stick to logical factors in your decision making such as how much you're willing to spend and how big of a piano you can have in your home. There's only so much you can determine when you're shopping by brand.
IMO the overwhelming majority of 10 old students with 2 years experience are not ready to evaluate piano's touch and tone.

FRPD has already indicated the rough price range and size of the piano he is looking for in one of his piano finder's earlier posts in the thread. Finally, Norbert did not repsond to the question he quoted which was about the prices for various pianos.


Edited by pianoloverus (02/25/12 03:19 PM)

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#1851331 - 02/25/12 09:12 AM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: ClsscLib]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19099
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: ClsscLib
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Originally Posted By: Norbert
Quote:
Originally Posted By: FilthyRichPianoDad
So what do you think the all in cost of the following pianos:
Quote:
Your question is answered in the Piano Buyer.

Piano Buyer doesn't answer this type of question.Ears and fingers do.
The question was about the cost.

Cost is one thing; value is different.
Yes, but the question was about the cost.


Edited by pianoloverus (02/25/12 09:14 AM)

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#1851343 - 02/25/12 09:38 AM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: pianoloverus]
ClsscLib Online   content

Platinum Supporter until Jan 02 2013


Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 1597
Loc: Northern VA, U.S.
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Originally Posted By: ClsscLib
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Originally Posted By: Norbert
Quote:
Originally Posted By: FilthyRichPianoDad
So what do you think the all in cost of the following pianos:
Quote:
Your question is answered in the Piano Buyer.

Piano Buyer doesn't answer this type of question.Ears and fingers do.
The question was about the cost.

Cost is one thing; value is different.
Yes, but the question was about the cost.


As Alexander Bickel liked to say, no answer is what the wrong question begets.
_________________________


"People may say I can't sing, but no one can ever say I didn't sing."

-- Florence Foster Jenkins

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#1851373 - 02/25/12 10:38 AM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
FilthyRichPianoDad Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/22/12
Posts: 14
Loc: Philadelphia, PA
When I was a kid, I was about as nerdy as you get. I loved math, chess, early video games and computing devices. One summer I saved almost every penny I made delivering newspapers to buy a Texas Instruments TI-55 calculator. I had never seen anything like it. It could handle logs, probabilty and trigonometry. It was far beyond my level of mathematical understanding at the time. But I'll tell you something - I eventually grew into its functionality and the capabilities of that calculator drove my curiosity and helped my push my mathematical limits.

We have a piano albeit a sub-optimal one. The reason we are planning to buy a new one has a lot to do with that TI-55. I feel as though it is inevitable that my children will outgrow our current instrument; so some time in the future we will have a different piano. That leaves the questions when and which piano. I have concentrated on pianos that will challenge them, insire them and drive their musical curiosity. Is this assumption/strategy is wrong? What is too much piano? Should I hold off buying a new piano until my oldest more skilled? Is my romantic comparison to my TI-55 deeply flawed?

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#1851376 - 02/25/12 10:43 AM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
Wound up Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/04/12
Posts: 65
FRPD Not flawed at all Beautiful instruments ARE imspiring

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#1851414 - 02/25/12 12:08 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
ClsscLib Online   content

Platinum Supporter until Jan 02 2013


Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 1597
Loc: Northern VA, U.S.
No, that's not flawed. It's admirable. Every kid should have a parent who is so thoughtful about the child's future and who cares so much about how best to help the child.

And now you're starting to get to the RIGHT question: As your children grow and develop musically, WHICH "..pianos... will challenge them, inspire them, and drive their musical curiosity." Or in the terms of your story, which instrument will provide the maximum potential to bring out and reflect the musical growth and development of your kids? Not all pianos -- not even all top "brand" pianos -- can deliver the same potential.

Deciding which one does bring that potential involves primarily questions of tone and action. Getting to the right answer will involve broadening the focus of what you appear willing to consider and the exercise of some judgment about tone, action, and what they produce in terms of musical "output."

The judgment exercised could be your own or it could be someone else's, but if you don't make the judgment yourself, then you're delegating it to someone who isn't focused on your goals.

One approach raised earlier in this thread is going to the shops selling the pianos on your ultimate "finalist" list with a good pianist -- maybe your child's teacher, maybe someone else -- and having that accomplished player play the same set of pieces (different styles to show versatility) -- then asking the player what was distinctive about the piano's touch (at which point you should put your fingers on the keys to see if you can feel it yourself -- I'll bet you will).

More important will be the question, what did you think about the sound? If you're attentive and have any kind of ear, you WILL be able to distinguish differences.

A Steinway sounds very different from a Steingraeber. You would be able to hear the difference. Some people like the Steinway sound. Other people like the Steingraeber sound. Other people like the Grotrian sound better than either. And so on for other pianos.

Then the question becomes, how do you get to a list of "finalists"? Most here would tell you that there really is no substitute for going out and touching a lot of different pianos. Again, you don't need to be Ivan Moravec to distinguish differences among their sounds and actions. Past that, as I said above, a consultant can REALLY help you with insights about different makers and dealers.

I can tell you want to be your own consultant, but do you recall what Lincoln said about the man who wanted to be his own lawyer? You've already told us that when you have legal issues to resolve, you rely on a lawyer. That's good.

Now you have a different kind of issue to resolve.
_________________________


"People may say I can't sing, but no one can ever say I didn't sing."

-- Florence Foster Jenkins

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#1851421 - 02/25/12 12:16 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
jazzyprof Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/30/04
Posts: 2598
Loc: Ann Arbor, MI
Steinway C227
Fazioli F228
Shigeru Kawai SK7
Kawai RX7
Young Chang YP228
Estonia 225
Mason & Hamlin BB
Steinway B
August Förster 215
Grotian Concert
Bösendorfer 225

FRPD:

As a practical matter, you won't go wrong with any of the listed pianos so the possibility of making a mistake here does not exist. Since you don't play the piano yourself, it is also not necessarily a matter of the heart either, since you are not likely to fall in love with a particular piano that is "The One". So, it boils down to a question of ego gratification. And I don't mean this in a bad way.

Once we narrow it down to ego gratification, it becomes immediately obvious that the Young Chang must go. You don't want your 10-year-old's friends coming over for a slumber party and snickering "oooh, you only have a Young Chang". By the same token I would cross off the Estonia since it might call to mind the days of grim, drab, uninspiring products (JUST KIDDING, OK!) from the Soviet bloc (never might the fact that the Estonia 225 is an absolutely gorgeous piano).

Cross off also, all the pianos that no one in your circle has ever heard of. That would be the August Förster, the Grotrian, and most likely the Mason and Hamlin. Lose the Kawai RX7 for it does not have the same cachet as the Shigeru Kawai.

That brings us down to the finalists: Steinway B, Steinway C, Shigeru Kawai SK7, Fazioli F228, and Bösendorfer 225. Let's throw in a Yamaha CF6 because it's a brand new, gorgeous piano that lists for more than a Steinway B and whose bigger sibling, the CFX, won the Chopin International Piano Competition.

Throw out the Steinway C for the reasons Beisha has stated, with which I concur. Chuck the Bösendorfer 225. With your means, if you're going to get a Bosie it should only be the Bösendorfer Imperial.

So, here is my recommendation. Take your daughter on a fun trip to Piano Row in New York City. Have her try out a Steinway B, a Yamaha CF6 (if you can find one), a Shigeru Kawai SK7, and a Fazioli F228. Any one of these is a fantastic piano (if well prepped) which your daughter will grow into. Ego-wise, perhaps having a Fazioli or a Steinway may be more gratifying. Price-wise the SK7 offers the most bang for the buck. I have played all four-the last three at the NAMM show in January-and confess to having a slight preference for the SK7 in terms of tone and touch. The money you'll save on that piano you can then donate to PianoWorld for all this great, free advice! smile

Or you could hire Piano MatchMaker and be done with it. (Disclaimer: I don't know her; just read about her in the New Yorker)

Whichever one you buy, it is essential to have a good technician at your disposal who will keep these thoroughbreds in top form with regular tunings and the occasional voicing and regulation.
_________________________
"Playing the piano is my greatest joy...period."......JP

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#1851524 - 02/25/12 03:09 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
Wound up Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/04/12
Posts: 65
Just Because he doesn't play doesn't mean he won't have a connection with one of the pianos being 'the one' All of pianos in the list are going to have acceptable action -- He has to pick the one with the tone that sings to him -- I agree with ClascLib you WILL hear the difference and prefer some to others.

That 'Going to Piano Row' with appointments and a pianist sounds smart and fun. Or just have Sam Fed Ex you the 225,

And I would not rule out the Bosendorfer 225 OR Imperial both are In my top ? listit is just a room size issue__ I prefer the Imperial but also love the 225__ I like the European pianos best so for me I would nix the American and the Japanese ones -- But you have to decide which one you wanna hear and which logo you want to look at--

Also, When you visit the pianos -- I know this is going to sound dumb.... But I think the visual element of loooking inside them in person is bound to yeild some preference as well.. Just don't let them talk you into a player system

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#1851527 - 02/25/12 03:12 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
Wound up Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/04/12
Posts: 65
Fazioli F228

Estonia 225


Grotian Concert
Bösendorfer 225

There does that help!


Edited by Wound up (02/25/12 03:12 PM)

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#1851539 - 02/25/12 03:41 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: FilthyRichPianoDad]
master88er Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/15/07
Posts: 790
Loc: San Francisco Bay Area
Originally Posted By: FilthyRichPianoDad
When I was a kid, I was about as nerdy as you get. I loved math, chess, early video games and computing devices. One summer I saved almost every penny I made delivering newspapers to buy a Texas Instruments TI-55 calculator. I had never seen anything like it. It could handle logs, probabilty and trigonometry. It was far beyond my level of mathematical understanding at the time. But I'll tell you something - I eventually grew into its functionality and the capabilities of that calculator drove my curiosity and helped my push my mathematical limits.

We have a piano albeit a sub-optimal one. The reason we are planning to buy a new one has a lot to do with that TI-55. I feel as though it is inevitable that my children will outgrow our current instrument; so some time in the future we will have a different piano. That leaves the questions when and which piano. I have concentrated on pianos that will challenge them, insire them and drive their musical curiosity. Is this assumption/strategy is wrong? What is too much piano? Should I hold off buying a new piano until my oldest more skilled? Is my romantic comparison to my TI-55 deeply flawed?


There is absolutely no flaw in this analysis, and my personal philosophy is that if you give a child a good tool, you will get a good result.

The one flaw you have stated, IMHO,is that your daughter should MOST DEFINITELY be involved in the decision, and you should take her with when you go to various showrooms. Regardless of her current ability or age, competent dealers/salespeople will involve her in the decision, and therefore she will have a vested interest in the piano that ends up in your home. You couldn't ask for a better scenario to encourage her to continue. I would only suggest that you leave your personal biases out of the equation and let her experience the pianos and their differences.

In the 1990's, we sold Steve Jobs (of blessed memory) a piano for his daughter. We carried many top brands, including new Bechstein, Sauter, Bluthner, Seiler, Schimmel and Kawai. After much consideration, he purchased a new Sauter for her - which was not the flashiest or most expensive or in-vogue choice, but certainly an informed and excellent selection. Even though Lisa only played rudimentary pieces at the time, to this day she plays and loves the piano her father bought for her.

Just my $.02
_________________________
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R.KASSMAN, Purveyor of Fine Pianos
Berkeley, CA

FORMER US Rep.for C.Bechstein

SF Area Dealer: SteingraeberGrotrianSauterEstoniaKayserburgBaldwinBrodmannRitmller
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#1851558 - 02/25/12 04:15 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: Wound up]
ClsscLib Online   content

Platinum Supporter until Jan 02 2013


Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 1597
Loc: Northern VA, U.S.
Originally Posted By: Wound up
All of pianos in the list are going to have acceptable action -- He has to pick the one with the tone that sings to him -- I agree with ClascLib you WILL hear the difference and prefer some to others.



I'm no expert, but I detected a wide variety in the actions of various top tier pianos. That's not to say that any of them were unacceptable, but some were (at least to me) clearly superior. Agree with the rest of what you said, especially that the Piano Row trip could be a hoot for a dad & his daughter.
_________________________


"People may say I can't sing, but no one can ever say I didn't sing."

-- Florence Foster Jenkins

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#1851576 - 02/25/12 05:01 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: the nosy ape]
TwoSnowflakes Online   blank
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/15/12
Posts: 829
Originally Posted By: the nosy ape
Originally Posted By: FilthyRichPianoDad
the noisy ape,

That's an interesting idea but I'm not sure she's that discriminating. Additionally, it would be a political Pandora's Box once all the younger kids found out.

I am not so sure, it may give them some incentive to play the piano.


Or something to tell their therapist one day about how dad always loved her more. wink

I think she probably would not, at this point, have anything really relevant to add and might almost feel a little overwhelmed trying to come up with an opinion.

I would hope that having such an amazing thing show up in her living room would provide some measure of enduring incentive on its own.

Look, I don't know. I think what's universal here is that we all want to get to the point where, once Your New Piano is in the house and sitting there, that it makes you smile and feel a sense of satisfaction just walking past it. And I guess the way we get there is going to be different for all. Knowing my friend (and I'm glad he's here to agree or disagree with this himself) I feel like the following outcome is most important:

When all is said and done, he'll most enjoy his purchase having discovered something exceptional that isn't necessarily the most obvious or the most expensive. He'll have gotten there by having researched articles and solicited opinions and poured over everything he can find out about the entire industry.

But (and here's the unusual part), he wants to avoid the incorporation of direct personal preference. In other words, the introduction of a "well, I heard it and liked Piano X better than Piano Y and that's why I got it", or the seeking out of the opinion of his daughter actually might diminish the satisfaction for him. Why? Because I really think that he would totally dig the challenge of quantifying something that everybody else considers a completely--or at least an overwhelmingly--subjective and qualitative process.

Not that the subjective process of those who have spent hours in showrooms waiting for one to speak to them is of less validity. Quite the contrary; had he such an expertise, he'd be going about it that way himself. But in the absence of it, that he can say he aggregated others' preferences and backed himself into the decision he might have made had he had the requisite expertise, within a reasonable level of confidence, well, that would make him smile every time he passed the piano.

And there you have it: what happens when a man who lives his life coming up with mathematical models buys a piano.



Edited by TwoSnowflakes (02/25/12 05:02 PM)
_________________________
Currently:
Shostakovich, Trio e Minor, Op. 67
Schumann, Album fr die Jugend, Op. 68
Grieg, Four Norwegian Dances, Op. 35

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#1851584 - 02/25/12 05:10 PM Re: More grand piano selection help! Yamaha v. Kawai v. Shigeru! [Re: TwoSnowflakes]
jazzyprof Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/30/04
Posts: 2598
Loc: Ann Arbor, MI
Originally Posted By: TwoSnowflakes
Because I really think that he would totally dig the challenge of quantifying something that everybody else considers a completely--or at least an overwhelmingly--subjective and qualitative process.

Perhaps the piano equivalent of the eHarmony mathematical algorithm for finding compatible mates?
_________________________
"Playing the piano is my greatest joy...period."......JP

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