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#1880794 - 04/16/12 08:26 PM Cost of $5000 grand
windywindy Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/15/12
Posts: 2
I dream of owning a grand as my first "own" piano. Previous pianos were my parents', and it will be a step up from the PSR-220 keyboard I play today. I've seen asking prices under $6k used for 90s models and some as late as 2000. Most are Young Chang G-175 or G-185. A few are Schafer and Sons.

I would have any piano checked by a RPT, but is it just crazy from the start to go for one of these pianos that was on the low end when new? My thinking is that if I have it regulated then it will become fast and even enough for an intermediate, that 5'8" is big enough to sound OK, and that if I shop well then I will take little or no loss selling it a few years from now when I can afford something nicer.

I know $5000 will get a very nice used upright, but (I won't lie) furniture effect is a consideration.

Is this a crazy from the start? Prone to lose money?

Should I just look for the biggest piano I can find at this price? I have space for 7'6" - just not budget. I read the Larry Fine article on "Under 5 Feet," and my reading was that these can sound nice. Other sources say don't bother if it's under 6 feet. So which is it? I'm not a pro, but I do want an instrument rather than a table.

Can anyone offer some guidance?


Edited by windywindy (04/16/12 08:29 PM)

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#1880803 - 04/16/12 08:48 PM Re: Cost of $5000 grand [Re: windywindy]
DadAgain Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/09/09
Posts: 365
Loc: Brisbane, QLD
Each to their own of course - but I love our 'cheap' 5ft Hailun. It seemed so much nicer than the more expensive uprights and much nicer than equivalent priced 'big brand' pianos.

One thing I did discover however, was when I got the piano home it sounded horrible. my room was utterly unsuited to a real piano, really hard and loud with reflections everywhere, even the piano tuner commented that he struggled to tune it as he couldnt hear what was going on the room was to echoic. I've since developed some DIY skills and created a bunch of absorbative acoustic panels out of some timber, a HUGE sheet of acoustic insulation material purchased off eBay and a bit of fabric.

The room is nearly under control - but still needs more treatment so I recently bough another huge sheet of acoustic insulation stuff which is leaning up against a wall in the corner of the room. It seems just roughly stopping reflection out of the rooms corner has massively improved the clarity of the pianos bass - so what I thought were limitations due to its diminuitive size were in fact issues with room placement and poor room acoustics.
_________________________
Parent....
Orchestral Viola player (stictly amateur)....
Hack Pianist.... (faded skills from glory days 20 yrs ago)
Vague Guitar & Bass player.... (former minor income stream 15 yrs ago)
Former conductor... (been a long time since I was set loose with a magic wand!)

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#1880804 - 04/16/12 08:51 PM Re: Cost of $5000 grand [Re: windywindy]
ventil Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/15/11
Posts: 149
Loc: TX
Originally Posted By: windywindy
I would have any piano checked by a RPT, but is it just crazy from the start to go for one of these pianos that was on the low end when new? My thinking is that if I have it regulated then it will become fast and even enough for an intermediate, that 5'8" is big enough to sound OK, and that if I shop well then I will take little or no loss selling it a few years from now when I can afford something nicer.


By all means, have it checked by a tech.

Pianos, especially non-world-class, pianos are not what you might call "functional investments" such as an original Picasso for your living room for a Stradivarius or your daughter to learn to play violin. wink

Buy the piano you want to play for the next 5 or 50 years.
_________________________
David M. Boothe, CAS

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#1880805 - 04/16/12 08:52 PM Re: Cost of $5000 grand [Re: windywindy]
Plowboy Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/26/08
Posts: 2398
Loc: SoCal
For 6k you can get a new grand piano in the 5' to 5'4" range. At least in SoCal. Shop around.
_________________________
Gary

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#1880819 - 04/16/12 09:30 PM Re: Cost of $5000 grand [Re: windywindy]
Greg88 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/25/09
Posts: 85
Loc: Ludlow, Kentucky
For your budget you can buy a new small grand. I think you can also find a used one that will make you happy in your price range. I will probably get some criticism for saying this but DON'T BUY A VERTICAL PIANO IF YOU WANT A GRAND. If you want a grand you will probably be very happy to make the sacrifice in tone quality in the bass for the furniture value you will gain. Although I play my piano everyday, I also spend as much time admiring the physical beauty of it (yep, I can actually just sit and stare at it and be highly entertained) and for me, and perhaps for you, no upright piano, no matter what it sounded like could take the place of any small grand. Of course, I play for fun and enjoyment, not for competition, recording or making money with my small grand. Best of luck to you. You will find all kinds of beautiful new and used grands in your price range.
_________________________
Schumann Grand by Samick (1990)
Howard Grand by Baldwin (1941)
Yamaha Clavanova Digital

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#1880834 - 04/16/12 10:13 PM Re: Cost of $5000 grand [Re: Greg88]
mahermusic Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/08/08
Posts: 348
Loc: U.S.A.
Originally Posted By: Greg88
(yep, I can actually just sit and stare at it and be highly entertained)


I have two collectors cars in the garage that I do the same thing to...
_________________________
Charles R. Walter 1520 QA Mahogany #531739 w/ High Polish, Renner and Quiet Pedal

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#1880848 - 04/16/12 10:45 PM Re: Cost of $5000 grand [Re: windywindy]
Rickster Offline


Registered: 03/25/06
Posts: 8585
Loc: Georgia, USA
Originally Posted By: mahermusic
I have two collectors cars in the garage that I do the same thing to...

Muscle cars? smile

As I get older, I like fast cars… and, I like fast music. I have two primary tempos when I'm playing my pianos, fast and faster! However, I’m thinking I need to slow down a bit and in my old age. laugh

Rick
_________________________
Piano enthusiast and amateur musician: "Treat others the way you would like to be treated". Yamaha C7. YouTube Channel

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#1880920 - 04/17/12 03:24 AM Re: Cost of $5000 grand [Re: windywindy]
JohnSprung Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/02/11
Posts: 1651
Loc: Reseda, California
Originally Posted By: windywindy
Should I just look for the biggest piano I can find at this price? I have space for 7'6" - just not budget.


I got a 9' for $6500, so spend some time looking for used ones. Big pianos are hard to sell, so the prices drop a lot. If you're not in a hurry, you're more likely to get lucky.
_________________________
-- J.S.

Knabe Grand # 10927
Yamaha CP33
Kawai FS690

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#1880951 - 04/17/12 05:30 AM Re: Cost of $5000 grand [Re: windywindy]
crogersrx Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/25/08
Posts: 712
Loc: San Francisco, CA
I've seen some very nice pianos for around 5-6K on Craigslist. If you know how to play and know what you like in a piano, then you should be able to judge if it's tone and mechanism are satisfying enough for you. I would definitely still get a good tech to look the piano over for any hidden defects that may make your 5K purchase a waste. You're not going to get a "slightly used" Steinway B for that price, but you just may find a really sweet 6 foot piano that is very satisfying for that price and that will take care of your needs. Of course, you could also plunk down $5K as a down payment on a nice used Yamaha C7 for around $20-25,000 and just make payments for several years and have all the piano and more that you were looking for.
_________________________
Cary Rogers, PharmD
San Francisco, CA
1887 Knabe 6'4" (Rebuilt)

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