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#1930126 - 07/21/12 07:15 AM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Pianolance]
Bob Newbie Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/02/06
Posts: 1549
The question remains,just what "kind" of piano are we talking about?
a piano that has limited shelf life? say 20 or less yrs?
then is ground up and pulverized to make compostite wood decking?
then you go out and buy a shiny new one like a car and repeat the process
all over again? this kind of thinking would kill the rebuild market!

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#1930155 - 07/21/12 08:50 AM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Pianolance]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7239
Loc: Rochester MN
Just thinking back - to the sixties

My mother was a piano teacher and we lived in NE Wisconsin. We were friends with the family who owned Don Poh Piano Co., in Green Bay. Don called my mother one day and asked Mom to come try a new piano line. He wouldn't tell us what it was. At the store were two new pianos with a funny name. The pianos blew both of us away. Neither had been tuned or prepped. Mom just about fell on the floor when the price was revealed as it was so inexpensive.

In about the same time frame, we happend upon a piano at a music store, in Appleton, whose name reminded us only of motorcycles. It was an OK piano and my mother pronounced it as being not quite at the same level as the instruments in Green Bay. She disliked the action. I was only about 11-12 at the time.

However the pianos made an impression when they first arrived, at least to pianists. My mom always described the difference in tone as the difference between a Harley and one of those inported "street-screamers." Dad rode a Harley, so there was some prejudice involved.

Yep, Kawai was the Harley, and Yamaha was the "street-screamer."

One thing was quite apparent; there were now some good pianos available at a price point considerably lower than Steinway, Baldwin, or Mason. Something new was happening.

Now, four decades later, we are seeing the same thing happening with the emergence of the Chinese pianos. I am still amazed at what is available at an entry level price. I am also thrilled at the birth of new truly fine pianos as represented by Estonia and C. Walter.

The street race has raged since the sixties and there are some new entrants moving into the pack from China.
_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

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#1930171 - 07/21/12 09:27 AM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Pianolance]
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10457
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Norbert.

You claimed several times in this thread that pianos marketed as being Made in Japan are actually made in China. There are only 2 significant Japanese piano monufacturers, Yamaha and Kawai (who also makes Boston).

Quote:
It is interesting that those dealers answering "No" are often dealers for Japanese pianos. Some of the dealers also don't tell their customers that the "Japanese" model they are looking at is in fact already made in China - yet it is always the "Japanese" company identity being sold. We have collected a number of pictures of those pianos" clearly depicting "made in China" on their factory crates. Often a shock to unsuspecting shoppers who never thought about this being possible...




Quote:
There's no doubt that retailers for other oriental pianos will be the first to go on the denial trail.

Their curious denial is quite in sync with the fact that many if not most of their own pianos are also being built in China.


Please substantiate your claim. Which models of Yamaha and Kawai are made in China? Which models are made in China but labeled on the crate as being made in Japan?

You say, as quoted above, (and have said in the past) that you have pictures of Japanese piano crates marked "Made in China". I spoke to Larry Fine about your claims. Please produce those pictures.

Please be clear in your reply...no dancing around the issue.
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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#1930180 - 07/21/12 09:54 AM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Pianolance]
Roger Ransom Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/19/05
Posts: 1252
Loc: SouthWest Michigan
I, obviously, don't know very much about piano making in China but I have a couple questions I've wondered about for some time.

1. Has any Chinese piano company actually made an all out effort to design and build a very high end piano or are they trying to build pianos at a specific price point intended to make as much money as possible?

2. It sure seems like the skill is available in China to build anything at any level desired. Just look at some of the unbelievably high quality art work that is being produced and has been produced in the past. It is second to none in the world.

3. It seems like (to me at least) that if they decided to produce a piano to rival any piano in the world, price and effort be damned, they might be able to do that. It may not be worth the cost and effort?

I recall laughing in derision when I heard that a Japanese company was going to design and build a luxury car when I was accustomed to seeing good, small, basic cars built there. Clearly I was dead wrong.

Maybe the Chinese just haven't seen a big enough benefit to building a relative few very high level pianos when they can make lots of money building zillions of lower cost pianos?

I sure don't know but it makes me wonder.
_________________________
Laugh More
Yamaha G7 - Roland FP7

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#1930193 - 07/21/12 10:27 AM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Pianolance]
Guapo Gabacho Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/23/11
Posts: 430
Loc: Rio Grande Valley of Texas

In 2004 Kawai began to build a piano parts plant in China and by 2007 hoped to have a complete piano plant in operation.

Read more: http://www.answers.com/topic/kawai-musical-instruments-manufacturing-co-ltd#ixzz21GdL25xk
_________________________
'86 Baldwin SF-10

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#1930194 - 07/21/12 10:29 AM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Roger Ransom]
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10457
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Originally Posted By: Roger Ransom
I, obviously, don't know very much about piano making in China but I have a couple questions I've wondered about for some time.

1. Has any Chinese piano company actually made an all out effort to design and build a very high end piano or are they trying to build pianos at a specific price point intended to make as much money as possible?

2. It sure seems like the skill is available in China to build anything at any level desired. Just look at some of the unbelievably high quality art work that is being produced and has been produced in the past. It is second to none in the world.

3. It seems like (to me at least) that if they decided to produce a piano to rival any piano in the world, price and effort be damned, they might be able to do that. It may not be worth the cost and effort?

I recall laughing in derision when I heard that a Japanese company was going to design and build a luxury car when I was accustomed to seeing good, small, basic cars built there. Clearly I was dead wrong.

Maybe the Chinese just haven't seen a big enough benefit to building a relative few very high level pianos when they can make lots of money building zillions of lower cost pianos?

I sure don't know but it makes me wonder.


Could a Chinese manufacturer make a piano with the same quality level as say Bosendorfer or C. Bechstein. I would think that, cost being no object, they could.

However selling such an instrument, even in relatively low quantities, would be a huge uphill battle.

Shoppers looking for a top tier instrument are buying more than "performance". They are buying reputation, the prestige of ownership and the aura of the brand. They simply are not looking to own even a great sounding off-brand.

Since the marketing is an insurmountable hurtle, there is no effort at production.
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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#1930195 - 07/21/12 10:31 AM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Pianolance]
Guapo Gabacho Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/23/11
Posts: 430
Loc: Rio Grande Valley of Texas
_________________________
'86 Baldwin SF-10

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#1930196 - 07/21/12 10:33 AM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Roger Ransom]
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Registered: 05/15/12
Posts: 7239
Loc: Rochester MN
Hi Laughing Roger,

You pose some interesting questions. The same thoughts have passed through my mind but then I wonder about things like high speed trains derailing or bridges collapsing. Sometimes it seems like high technology crashes into execution.

At the price point, some of the instruments are pretty amazing. It would be interesting if Hailun or Pearl River competed with a top tier introduction. They certainly could muster, or borrow, the skills needed but they still suffer from lack of name recognition in the U.S. and Canada. It took years for Kawai and Yamaha to become familiar names to the general buyer. Then Kawai popped up with the Shigeru. It sure changed a lot of minds and attitudes. It kicked Yamaha out of complacency.

If the question were posed for an off-the-cuff answer, if you would purchase a $90K Steinway or a $90K Pearl River, what would be the most prevelant reply?

_________________________
Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.

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#1930202 - 07/21/12 10:44 AM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Pianolance]
rlinkt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/08/12
Posts: 308
Loc: CA
I am in complete agreement with Del. I am actually in the market to buy a piano. I am not looking for the finest pianos -- just for a good home piano. Based on Larry Fine's ratings, I created a mental model of how the different brands / models stack up. Now that I have been visiting dealerships and actually listening to the pianos in the category / price range of interest to me, what my ears are telling me does not match up with the expectations set from reading the piano book, and I am having to fight the bias developed from the opinions in this book from an authority. In my price range, of the Chinese pianos I have listened to, the Weber 5''9" (this was probably a Del design piano) sounded pretty good to me. The Ritmuller sounded very good to me. The Hailun -- not so much to my taste. The couple of used Kawai RX-2s I have looked at sound excellent as well. Which one should I pick? I have been biased towards the Kawai because Larry Fine rates them 2-3 notches above the Chinese pianos, even though common sense would argue for picking the new piano that sounds just as good, comes with a 10-yr warranty and a dealership behind it. Exactly why does LF put the Ritmuller / Hailun below the RX series? I have no idea -- only the designers like Del may know. But I am still influenced by that opinion.

If I have that level of bias for a modest piano (and I think that I am representative of a fair number of consumers who are using these same sources of information to form their preferences), would these Chinese manufactures have any shot at selling high end pianos? I think it would be a hard sell. They are doing the right thing by focusing on the consumer segment for now and trying to get credibility based on the one competitive advantage in that segment -- price.

BTW, the piano is for my 7-yr old daughter, who knows nothing about brands / country of origin, and does not suffer from these biases. Her (mostly) unbiased rating of the pianos she has tried so far:

Tied at the top: A very fancy Schimmel and a 20-year old Baldwin (I wish I had the courage to buy a piano from a manufacturer who is out of business. It was a gorgeous sounding piano -- and cheap)

Next: Kawai RX-2, Ritmuller, Weber

Next: Yamaha (don't remember the models), Hailun (5'-10")

Mostly unbiased because she still thinks a shiny black cabinet is the best :-0


Edited by rlinkt (07/21/12 10:50 AM)

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#1930209 - 07/21/12 10:58 AM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: rlinkt]
ando Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3546
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Originally Posted By: rlinkt


.... and a 20-year old Baldwin (I wish I had the courage to buy a piano from a manufacturer who is out of business. It was a gorgeous sounding piano -- and cheap)


If it's a 20 year old piano, you're not going to be wanting further dealings with the factory that made it - regardless of whether they are in business or not. A Baldwin can be rebuilt, serviced, regulated like any other piano. It's a non-issue I think - especially if you love it and it's cheap. You should get it inspected by a technician and if it checks out, buy it!

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#1930213 - 07/21/12 11:02 AM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: rlinkt]
Guapo Gabacho Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/23/11
Posts: 430
Loc: Rio Grande Valley of Texas
Originally Posted By: rlinkt
... and a 20-year old Baldwin (I wish I had the courage to buy a piano from a manufacturer who is out of business. It was a gorgeous sounding piano -- and cheap)



They are not out of business. I needed a part and was directed to an authorised dealer that got me the sustain spring in less than a week. Anyway, what does it matter when the action was probably a Renner and the strings and such are off the shelf items? I bought mine in the same undervalued market that is still with us and can probably sell it for the same amount as I paid.
_________________________
'86 Baldwin SF-10

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#1930231 - 07/21/12 11:28 AM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: ando]
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10457
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Originally Posted By: ando
Originally Posted By: rlinkt


.... and a 20-year old Baldwin (I wish I had the courage to buy a piano from a manufacturer who is out of business. It was a gorgeous sounding piano -- and cheap)


If it's a 20 year old piano, you're not going to be wanting further dealings with the factory that made it - regardless of whether they are in business or not. A Baldwin can be rebuilt, serviced, regulated like any other piano. It's a non-issue I think - especially if you love it and it's cheap. You should get it inspected by a technician and if it checks out, buy it!


+1
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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#1930238 - 07/21/12 11:45 AM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Guapo Gabacho]
rlinkt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/08/12
Posts: 308
Loc: CA
Originally Posted By: Guapo Gabacho
Originally Posted By: rlinkt
... and a 20-year old Baldwin (I wish I had the courage to buy a piano from a manufacturer who is out of business. It was a gorgeous sounding piano -- and cheap)



They are not out of business. I needed a part and was directed to an authorised dealer that got me the sustain spring in less than a week. Anyway, what does it matter when the action was probably a Renner and the strings and such are off the shelf items? I bought mine in the same undervalued market that is still with us and can probably sell it for the same amount as I paid.


Interestng -- I thought getting action parts, if needed, would be a problem. Knowing this does change the playing field considerably. Thanks for the guidance.

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#1930242 - 07/21/12 11:51 AM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: rlinkt]
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10457
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Originally Posted By: rlinkt
Exactly why does LF put the Ritmuller / Hailun below the RX series? I have no idea -- only the designers like Del may know. But I am still influenced by that opinion.


I can officially shed some light on the issue you find confusing.

Larry's strategy in formulating the ratings is to try to base it on the various factors important to the typical buyer. This goes beyond performance (tonality and touch) to include design, anticipated longevity, reputation, anticipated resale values, quality of manufacturer's parts and service support to its dealers and to consumers, as well as how it is perceived in the marketplace by industry pros and consumers.

For example, while the performance of two competing brand might be similar, if one has a considerably better reputation and name recognition (which often affects resale values), a better parts and service department, and a strong history for longevity, it may well be rated higher than a manufacturer who lacks those attributes.

Taken in the context I described herein, the ratings should make more sense.
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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#1930253 - 07/21/12 12:25 PM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Steve Cohen]
rlinkt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/08/12
Posts: 308
Loc: CA
Quote:

This goes beyond performance (tonality and touch) to include design, anticipated longevity, reputation, anticipated resale values, quality of manufacturer's parts and service support to its dealers and to consumers, as well as how it is perceived in the marketplace by industry pros and consumers.

Taken in the context I described herein, the ratings should make more sense.


It makes sense once you take the market perception and expected resale value into consideration. That just makes it so much harder for the new entrants to gain market share. No wonder the Chinese manufacturers are tripping over each other to license the old brands.

I want to convey my thanks to the members on this board who have taken the time to share their knowledge and demystify the space for a newbie like me.

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#1930256 - 07/21/12 12:32 PM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Pianolance]
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14135
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Cohen said:

Quote:

Please substantiate your claim. Which models of Yamaha and Kawai are made in China? Which models are made in China but labeled on the crate as being made in Japan?


You didn't read right. The pianos are often represented as implied Japanese made products without revealing that the model in question is a actually made in China - as per crate.

This information does not appear to be always given voluntarily or upfront by the dealer when showing product - unless when specifically probed by customer.

I'm sure that conscientious dealers are doing things differently and are more transparent.

Your position appreciated.

Norbert


Edited by Norbert (07/21/12 12:35 PM)
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

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#1930267 - 07/21/12 12:45 PM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Norbert]
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10457
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Originally Posted By: Norbert
Cohen said:

Quote:

Please substantiate your claim. Which models of Yamaha and Kawai are made in China? Which models are made in China but labeled on the crate as being made in Japan?


You didn't read right. The pianos are often represented as implied Japanese made products without revealing that the model in question is a actually made in China - as per crate.

This information does not appear to be always given voluntarily or upfront by the dealer when showing product - unless when specifically probed by customer.

I'm sure that conscientious dealers are doing things differently and are more transparent.

Your position appreciated.

Norbert


I understand.

Thanks.
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

Top
#1930273 - 07/21/12 12:59 PM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Pianolance]
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14135
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Quote:
Larry's strategy in formulating the ratings is to try to base it on the various factors important to the typical buyer. This goes beyond performance (tonality and touch) to include design, anticipated longevity, reputation, anticipated resale values, quality of manufacturer's parts and service support to its dealers and to consumers, as well as how it is perceived in the marketplace by industry pros and consumers.


If this is the case, I'm sorry to say that a lot of ratings don't make any sense - at least to me.

IMHO "touch and tone" is still where it's at, at least when judging a piano from a musical point of view.

"design" is an interesting factor to consider: are people like Lothar Thomma's or Frank Emerson not prominent enough and among the very best guys in the business?

"Anticipated longevity" is another tough one: German manufacturers and perhaps Steinway with 200 years of tradition hold exactly this usually against their oriental counterparts who have been around for far less than that.

The other items are all troublesome as well to say the least: who has the inside that a piano costing $ 30,000 new has a better "resale value" or 'less loss of depreciation' than one costing just a fraction of that?

It's not easy and I certainly don't envy Mr. Fine's job. However, for real players and musicians - especially those on tight budgets - the piano itself will always be the most important factor.

How can there be more to food than its taste, freshness including perhaps the way of being cooked?

Does one rate restaurant food how "famous" the cook is or how long the restaurant has been around or is expected to be in business?

Comparing and 'rating' pianos especially in same or similar price ranges is where its really at in today's market.

At least for most consumers and piano shoppers we happen to meet.

Norbert smile


Edited by Norbert (07/21/12 02:07 PM)
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

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#1930289 - 07/21/12 01:42 PM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Pianolance]
rlinkt Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/08/12
Posts: 308
Loc: CA
The rating strategy can certainly be questioned. It makes a lot of sense for people who overweight those decision criteria. There could be a different rating strategy for people who only care about the performance -- ie the group that mostly cares about the taste and less about the kitchen it came from. Me -- I love street food :-)

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#1930322 - 07/21/12 03:01 PM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Pianolance]
Jeff Clef Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/05/08
Posts: 4414
Loc: San Jose, CA
"...Kurtmen, unless English isn't your first language... you ought to learn..."

Dara, I'm surprised at you. You usually represent your point of view intelligently, and I've found your posts enjoyable and spirited. But this is not an example of your best.

You may not have had the opportunity to speak with Kurtmen in person. I can tell you that he is a gentlemanly person, very well-informed in his field, intelligent and perceptive. No, English is not his first language, but the qualities I mentioned are the ones which stand out in a conversation with him. I also think that someone who has been able to maintain a long-term career when business conditions are so unfavorable, commands some respect simply for that.

"...In just the time I’ve been in the business Yamaha has gone from building cheap, troublesome pianos to building inexpensive, reliable pianos... I don’t recall that Kawai ever sent pianos to the U.S. that were quite as troublesome as those early Yamahas... And Kawai also now builds pianos that stand among the best of the world’s pianos.

"Why should we think that the Chinese experience will be any different? The early Chinese-built offerings were, to put it mildly, pathetic. Now, just two decades later, some Chinese manufacturers are building pianos that are both inexpensive and are setting new standards for performance in their market categories..."


Accurate enough, as far as it goes. If we remember back to the pianos which were being produced in America in the 1960's... well, most of us would rather not, rightly wishing to forgo the embarrassment. And of course, that is what opened the door to the first low-cost imports from the Orient--- that, and low-cost shipping around half the globe, and some favorable political factors.

The Chinese products have been their own worst ambassador, from "stainless steel" cutlery that rusts in the dishwasher, to poisonous pet food, tainted infant formula, and a lot of lead where it should not be--- there's a long list of horrors. No doubt they will start doing better when they realize that Americans have stopped going to WalMart to scarf up Chinese-made bargains (since our own jobs have been shipped over there and the bargains don't look so affordable anymore, especially considering the quality), or that we no longer make trips there for new livers, freshly harvested from executed convicts, or we realize that the polluted air generated there blows right across the Pacific to us. And a few other things.

I should hope the pianos made there are getting better... but I already made my buying decision, and shopped elsewhere. Not just for pianos, either; I've gotten used to looking at the tags that say "Product of _____." I'm sure Del is far better-informed than I about current trends, and quality and price do count... but other factors also count. Availability of parts and technical support, local service, and the reputation of the company matter a lot to me, espeially when it's an expensive musical instrument that I expect to have and use daily for many years.

I think it's a great thing that the country is waking up and discovering music, and that so many are interested in learning piano. But that is a topic for a different post.
_________________________
Clef


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#1930323 - 07/21/12 03:04 PM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: rlinkt]
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10457
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Originally Posted By: rlinkt
The rating strategy can certainly be questioned. It makes a lot of sense for people who overweight those decision criteria. There could be a different rating strategy for people who only care about the performance -- ie the group that mostly cares about the taste and less about the kitchen it came from. Me -- I love street food :-)


I, (and I can speak for Larry on this), agree that the methodology can certainly be questioned. And, if anyone has a better way, they too are welcome to publish.

It is what it is. And we find that it is very helpful to a significant percentage of shoppers.
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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#1930330 - 07/21/12 03:17 PM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Pianolance]
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14135
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Quote:
Availability of parts and technical support, local service, and the reputation of the company matter a lot to me, especially when it's an expensive musical instrument that I expect to have and use daily for many years.


This is a good point but in today's market nobody can do less than excellent. Personally I don't know a single manufacturer who is not looking after it's customers very well today.

For example years ago we had an issue with one particular Brodmann grand in Alberta where humidity can go down to 2-5 degrees in winter. The customer received a brand new piano within one week. It even surprised us...

What customers are entitled to is to pick the criteria of choice themselves. Outside tone,touch, musical appeal and of course *price*, these however become harder and harder to determine, at least on a general basis.

Rest assured that anybody coming here and ordering an Estonia or Sauter concert grand before even greeting, won't ever be questioned for even one single second....

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

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#1930380 - 07/21/12 06:19 PM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: pianoloverus]
master88er Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/15/07
Posts: 848
Loc: San Francisco Bay Area
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus

My point was that at present no Chinese makers are building pianos that have the equivalent goals(building the best piano possible) as the Shigeru or Yamaha CF or S series. At present, they are building inexpensive pianos not even designed to compete with the Tier 1 and Tier 2 pianos the way those Kawai and Yamaha models do.



Actually, that is not true. This article was published in the Sacramento main newspaper last week : KAYSERBURG

Clearly, Pearl River has exactly that in mind and having put these pianos side by side to some of the most revered and prestigious pianos on the planet, I dare say that (IMHO) they are well on their way.
Originally Posted By: kurtman

G) When buyers ask, where is this piano made? Hardly ever a dealer answers China, without previously giving a talk about the German Components or parts from Europe.


While I accept Kurtman's comments I must admit to chalking it up to "sour grapes." After all, I could counter by saying that most Kawai and Yamaha salesman don't bother selling the virutes of their products compared to the Chinese brands but simply state "well, you know that's made in China don't you?"

It's also disingenuous to point fingers when, not 20 years ago, Japanese manufacturers were touting their affiliation or similarity to German manufacturers, and companies like Kawai even built pianos with names like Schiedmayer!


Edited by master88er (07/21/12 06:29 PM)
_________________________
Russell I. Kassman
R.KASSMAN, Purveyor of Fine Pianos
Berkeley, CA

FORMER US Rep.for C.Bechstein

SF Area Dealer: SteingraeberGrotrianSauterEstoniaKayserburgBaldwinBrodmannRitmller
www.rkassman.com
russell@rkassman.com
510.558.0765

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#1930383 - 07/21/12 06:35 PM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: master88er]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19261
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: master88er
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus

My point was that at present no Chinese makers are building pianos that have the equivalent goals(building the best piano possible) as the Shigeru or Yamaha CF or S series. At present, they are building inexpensive pianos not even designed to compete with the Tier 1 and Tier 2 pianos the way those Kawai and Yamaha models do.



Actually, that is not true. This article was published in the Sacramento main newspaper last week : KAYSERBURG
Thanks for that information.

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#1930386 - 07/21/12 06:41 PM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Pianolance]
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14135
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Quote:

My point was that at present no Chinese makers are building pianos that have the equivalent goals(building the best piano possible) as the Shigeru or Yamaha CF or S series.


Nor do those Japanese makers building this very select group of high end pianos. 99% of the rest of their models have nothing to do with these special group and it's not the type piano most shoppers are looking at when considering Japanese.

If and when Kayserburg, Ritmüller or Brodmann will introduce their first "made in Germany" pianos later this year, it also has nothing to do with Chinese pianos in general.

The basic point is that things are moving on for average consumers and at an alarming, ever more rapid pace.

Those who wish to ignore the whole thing can do as they please.

Others may find surprising reward in looking at some of the already incredible, highly appealing "Chinese made" options around them.

Including some of the makes not usually suspected to manufacture there....

Years ago I already said :

"one day there will be only real high end pianos in one group"

"and all the rest in the other"

We're there - or very close.

Norbert


Edited by Norbert (07/21/12 07:07 PM)
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

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#1930399 - 07/21/12 07:30 PM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Norbert]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 19261
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Norbert
Quote:

My point was that at present no Chinese makers are building pianos that have the equivalent goals(building the best piano possible) as the Shigeru or Yamaha CF or S series.


Nor do those Japanese makers building this very select group of high end pianos. 99% of the rest of their models have nothing to do with these special group and it's not the type piano most shoppers are looking at when considering Japanese.
What do the percentages of their pianos made have do with the goals of building the models I mentioned? The answer is "Nothing."


Edited by pianoloverus (07/22/12 01:02 PM)

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#1930423 - 07/21/12 08:30 PM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Norbert]
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10457
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Originally Posted By: Norbert
[quote]Years ago I already said :

"one day there will be only real high end pianos in one group"

"and all the rest in the other"

We're there - or very close.

Norbert


I wouldn't say we are there. But close??? I think we are less than a decade away. From my perspective that IS close.
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

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#1930430 - 07/21/12 08:55 PM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Pianolance]
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14135
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Quote:
I wouldn't say we are there. But close??? I think we are less than a decade away. From my perspective that IS close.


Hey Steve, I heard you plan to retire in about 10 years?

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

Top
#1930434 - 07/21/12 09:03 PM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Pianolance]
Steve Cohen Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10457
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
laugh
_________________________
Piano Industry Consultant- http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-cohen/6/b92/b80

Consultant & Contributing Editor - Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer

Jasons Music
Maryland/DC/No. VA
Since 1937.

www.jasonsmusic.com
My postings, unless stated otherwise, are my personal opinions, not those of my clients.

Top
#1930616 - 07/22/12 10:37 AM Re: 10 year old statement about Chinese pianos [Re: Jeff Clef]
Dara Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/18/09
Posts: 1029
Loc: west coast island, canada
Originally Posted By: Jeff Clef
Dara, I'm surprised at you. You usually represent your point of view intelligently, and I've found your posts enjoyable and spirited. But this is not an example of your best.


Hello Jeff, just catching up with your comment here. Thanks for expressing your viewpoint.
I'm not always at my best ; )
It's not easy to get a 'read' on many of the different people and personalities that post here. I freely admit that my contributions here aren't always in the most positive light. From my experience on writing on PW (the only forum I've engaged in) it sometimes brings out the worst in me.
I do have somewhat of an issue with China. After a lengthy search I purchased a piano manufactured there, which is a very fine instrument and which I'm also very grateful for.
China to me is somewhat of an abstraction, since I haven't been there. It's easy to imagine that this massive country is populated with a very caring culture. In this day and age it would be wonderful to see/hear/experience more individuals and cultures going beyond the grips of suppression, diminishment, control that I gather from my gleanings.
I couldn't care less about anyones agenda and ego.
We all have this one life to make something, interact, observe and share.

No intended slight towards Kurtmen.

Ultimately, the world of pianos is as insignificant and interesting as most anything else.
I'm very grateful to live in a place in this world (and also recognize it within myself) of freedom of intent, expression, and actuality.
And encourage it.

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