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#1949091 - 08/25/12 06:02 PM Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano
jawhitti Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/01/12
Posts: 235
I've played several new C6 pianos lately and found that I really like the feel and tone of that piano, probably more than anything else I've played. The C6's seem to be quite a different animal than the C3s - more mellow tha the C3s with a nicer, rounder sound.

I see hardly *any* of them on the used market. There was one on CL for sale near me when I was first looking and now I wish I had acted sooner.

So - a few questions maybe aimed more at the dealers?

1) The C6's I've played and really liked were brand-new. How far back can I go in the used market and have any confidence the sound will be similar? I've heard that over the past few years Yamaha has been working on making them less bright. Will a (say) ten year-old C6 be likely to resemble a 2012 in feel and timbre?

1b) Are the mechanics (action, strings, hammers) different between the 3 and the 6? If not, are the 6's maybe just better prepped from the factory?

2) Why do I see so few C6s out there on the used market? Yes it more expensive than the C3 but the C7 is more expensive yet and I see more of those than I do C6s.

3) Can a [new] C3 be voiced to resemble the new C6? Does the C6 use different hammers? Obviously you can't change the laws of physics but I'm talking about timbre more than power.


Edited by jawhitti (08/25/12 06:02 PM)

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#1949101 - 08/25/12 06:26 PM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: jawhitti]
PianoWorksATL Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/19/09
Posts: 2709
Loc: Atlanta, GA
The C6 has middle child syndrome both in its identity and in the minds of buyers. As a younger model (introduced around '96) it took some time to gain ground, and the 7' size is probably the most musically competitive in the piano industry. I remember we had one traded in on a Bosendorfer after just one year. We had that C6 for a while priced fairly, but it kept losing out to its 7' competitors on our floor. It went to a good home but at a lower price than I expected. That was around 2006. I ended up with the impression also from talking to some Yamaha dealers that the C6 was just a slow mover.

The C7 has a long following and is a star in the recording industry. That carries that model when the decision might otherwise go another way.

I would say that you can comfortably push the C3 in the direction of a C6 but would it be far enough to satisfy you is very hard to say. Yeah, physics and all.

What about the C5? Not a common model, but they've certainly been around a long time.

And to state the obvious, but it's not always reasonable to just go or even expect to find a used version in great shape for cheap.
_________________________
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PianoWorks - Atlanta Piano Dealer
Bösendorfer, Estonia, Seiler, Grotrian, Weber & Hailun
Pre-Owned: Yamaha, Kawai, Steinway & other fine pianos
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#1949129 - 08/25/12 08:54 PM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: jawhitti]
ando Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3583
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
I also found the C6 to have a totally different personality to the C7 and the C5. I think it's the nicest piano to play of the 3. More refined, more balanced. The only thing the C7 has over it is the powerful and sharply defined bass.

So no, I don't think you are imagining it. I've played 15 year old C6s too and they do retain that sound difference regardless of age.

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#1949131 - 08/25/12 09:13 PM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: jawhitti]
worldlinerai Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/19/10
Posts: 10
Loc: 5-pts Island
The chronology of the Yamaha grands on the Japanese website shows all the previous models of the Yamaha Grands.

http://jp.yamaha.com/products/musical-instruments/keyboards/about/model_history_gp/

Apparently, the C6 did not appear until October 1994 when Yamaha decided to merge the G series into the C series. Because there was going to be a conflict as G5 and C5 were both defined, Yamaha renumbered the C5 to C6 while the G5 became the new C5.

Therefore, the older C5s are ancestors of the current C6.

BTW, my first post.
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#1949145 - 08/25/12 10:10 PM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: worldlinerai]
PianoWorksATL Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/19/09
Posts: 2709
Loc: Atlanta, GA
Originally Posted By: worldlinerai
Therefore, the older C5s are ancestors of the current C6.

Welcome to Piano World. Thanks for sharing the link.

G5 in parallel to C5, evolving to the 6'11" version and then back to the current size lineup. C-series complete, G-series defunct just in time for '95. That has to be the most complicated period of the transitions/introductions in Yamaha grands.

By the way, I didn't see any mention of the GH1, GH1B, GA1 or GP1??


Edited by PianoWorksATL (08/25/12 10:11 PM)
_________________________
Sam Bennett
PianoWorks - Atlanta Piano Dealer
Bösendorfer, Estonia, Seiler, Grotrian, Weber & Hailun
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Full Restoration Shop
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#1949163 - 08/25/12 11:04 PM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: jawhitti]
j&j Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/24/09
Posts: 444
Loc: Southwest
Jawhitti - if your budget would allow, you really should try out the new C6Xa. Wow, I was really impressed!
_________________________
J & J
Yahama C3 PE
Casio Privia PX-330
"Inspiration exists, but it has to find you working." Pablo Picasso

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#1949177 - 08/26/12 12:16 AM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: jawhitti]
jawhitti Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/01/12
Posts: 235
I assure you my budget does not smile. All I can hope is that it will drive down the cost of the hopefully-now-obsolete C6 smile smile

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#1949185 - 08/26/12 01:16 AM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: jawhitti]
BDB Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21530
Loc: Oakland
I tune a C6 for a very famous pianist. It is really nice, better than the C7s I have tuned. I think having been designed later, it incorporates more of the improvements that Yamaha has made to its line-up recently.
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Semipro Tech

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#1949277 - 08/26/12 09:37 AM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: jawhitti]
Strings & Wood Offline


Gold member until Dec. 2012


Registered: 05/22/08
Posts: 1838
Loc: USA
I had the opportunity to play a C6 & C7 side by side recently, and was mystified that I like the C6 better.
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#1949420 - 08/26/12 03:27 PM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: jawhitti]
Stevester Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/04/03
Posts: 2851
Loc: New Jersey
I bought a new C3 in 2009 which I love. I don't care what anyone says, if you find a piano you really love you will play it more. Mine has broken in real nice.

Ah, but what if?? - can anyone give me some idea what the C6 and C7 are selling for?
_________________________
"The true character of a man can be determined by witnessing what he does when no one is watching".

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#1949425 - 08/26/12 03:39 PM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: Stevester]
4evrBeginR Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/27/09
Posts: 1607
Loc: California
I happened to have the chance to try the C6 / C6XA / C7 recently. Their prices in SF are approximately $40K / $45K / $45K respectively. Your mileage may vary.

The C6XA cost about the same as a C7. I would take the C6XA over the C7 without hesitation. Compared C6 and C7, the C7 does have a bigger sound, bigger bass, but I wouldn't say that either is better. They're different.


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#1949426 - 08/26/12 03:45 PM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: jawhitti]
ChrisVenables Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/09
Posts: 727
Loc: Hampshire, England
Hi jawhitti

The current C6 isn't an unusual piano in relation to other Yamaha C series models. Whereas the current C1 2 and 3 follow the same design and are more or less 'stretched' the C6,(and C7) despite being in the same series have some differences. They, like most other makers, employ certain design changes as the models within their range become longer. The following pics will illustrate this. The strings and soundboard in all current C series are of equal quality.

C6 key length - bass (more responsive and controllable)



C3 key length bass


C6 and C3 hammer shank lengths are same - levers are same also.


Although hammerheads and felt are identical, C6 has 23 note bass


...whereas C3 has 26 note bass section


Although both C6 and C3 have vertically laminated main bridges


C6 has a vertically laminated bass bridge and is fixed directly to soundboard.(better sound transmission)


Whereas C3 is non laminated and cantilevered.


C6 has more than a 90degree plus straight edge to rim to increase soundboard area in bass


C3 has standard 90 degree design

Contrary to the link to Yamaha Japan's website shown earlier, the C6F was introduced in late 1991 and although some improvements have been made in the transitions from C6F to just plain C6 to C6L to C6M if you're looking at used, condition and what you personally think about the piano play a more important role than age or model suffix.
_________________________
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Yamaha Piano UK main dealer and Grand Piano Centre
Stocking new Yamaha, Petrof and Venables & Son

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#1949446 - 08/26/12 04:20 PM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: jawhitti]
Stevester Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/04/03
Posts: 2851
Loc: New Jersey
Jeepers! - thanks to everyone for the quick replies and great photos as well!. I remember when I was almost an outcast for purchasing the C3.

Please - What is a C6XA?, can't find it on the Yamaha web site.

And what is the current street price for a new C3?

Thanks to all,
Steve Ries
_________________________
"The true character of a man can be determined by witnessing what he does when no one is watching".

anon

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#1949459 - 08/26/12 04:42 PM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: Stevester]
4evrBeginR Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/27/09
Posts: 1607
Loc: California
You have to look a bit to find the C3/C6 XA on Yamaha USA's site: http://usa.yamaha.com/products/musical-instruments/keyboards/grandpianos/c6xa/?mode=model
The information on the website doesn't really help. You have to play it to notice the difference, and it is very different.

Here in SF, you can pick up a C3 anywhere between $28 to $32K. These aren't quotes. They're price tags on the pianos at the stores I visited. Back in 2009, I could have bought a C3 for $24K in SF. Btw, the C3 is a very nice piano. I wouldn't mind having one at all.


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#1949461 - 08/26/12 04:47 PM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: jawhitti]
ChrisVenables Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/09
Posts: 727
Loc: Hampshire, England
Stevester:

Here's a link to our website for info on the C6XA

http://www.chrisvenables.co.uk/pianos/yamaha/yamaha-c6xa-c6-xa-grand-piano.htm

and Yamaha's

http://uk.yamaha.com/en/products/musical-instruments/keyboards/grandpianos/c_series/c6xa/?mode=model

Prices will be very negotiable right now as Yamaha will be announcing some model changes around the end of next month. How they can produce something better than the current C and CXA series at a similar price remains to be seen. wink
_________________________
Tech. & Partner: Venables Pianos
Yamaha Piano UK main dealer and Grand Piano Centre
Stocking new Yamaha, Petrof and Venables & Son

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#1949466 - 08/26/12 04:56 PM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: jawhitti]
Stevester Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/04/03
Posts: 2851
Loc: New Jersey
Chris- Many thanks, Steve
_________________________
"The true character of a man can be determined by witnessing what he does when no one is watching".

anon

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#1949536 - 08/26/12 07:38 PM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: jawhitti]
Stevester Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/04/03
Posts: 2851
Loc: New Jersey
4evrB - Many Thanks as well, Steve
_________________________
"The true character of a man can be determined by witnessing what he does when no one is watching".

anon

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#1949649 - 08/27/12 03:55 AM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: ChrisVenables]
Withindale Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/09/11
Posts: 1940
Loc: Suffolk, England
Originally Posted By: ChrisVenables
C6 key length - bass (more responsive and controllable)


C6 key length - bass (more responsive and controllable)



C3 key length bass


C6 has more than a 90degree plus straight edge to rim to increase soundboard area in bass


C3 has standard 90 degree design

Chris, thanks for putting up your great pictures - I had been wondering how much key lengths increased on longer models.

Would you, or someone else, please explain precisely why the longer keys are more responsive and controllable?

Key dip and down weight are presumably much the same but, from the pictures, the position of the hammer strike points appears to be a bit farther back on the C6.




Edited by Withindale (08/27/12 03:58 AM)
Edit Reason: Display images in full
_________________________
Ian Russell
Schiedmayer & Soehne, 1925 Model 14, 55" upright
Ibach, 1922 49" upright (project piano)

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#1949654 - 08/27/12 05:05 AM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: Withindale]
ando Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3583
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Originally Posted By: Withindale

Would you, or someone else, please explain precisely why the longer keys are more responsive and controllable?


The main benefit of longer keys is that they have more even response across the length of the key. On a baby grand, for example. The keys are very short and there is a noticeable difference in touch when you press on the end of the key compared to say halfway up the key. Having a longer "lever" means it's less sensitive to where on the key you press on it.

An analogy: say you had a wrench on a bolt. The grip is where you push on the wrench. If the grip is 6" long and the wrench is say 8" long there is an enormous difference in force on the wrench if you push at the far end of the grip or at the closer end of the grip. It's the difference between using an 8" lever or a 2" lever.

Now imagine the wrench has the same grip but the wrench is 20" long. Now we are comparing a 20" lever to a 14" lever. It's a much smaller difference and the end result is that it's easier to get a consistent force on the bolt.

Hope I expressed that clearly enough.

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#1949666 - 08/27/12 06:16 AM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: ando]
Withindale Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/09/11
Posts: 1940
Loc: Suffolk, England
Originally Posted By: ando
Originally Posted By: Withindale

Would you, or someone else, please explain precisely why the longer keys are more responsive and controllable?


The main benefit of longer keys is that they have more even response across the length of the key. [...]


Thank you, Ando, very clear.

My sums indicate you have to press twice as hard up at the fallboard on a C6 for the same effect as at the front of the key. That's comparing the leverage at 5.5 inches in from the front with that at 1 inch in above the cushion.

On the C3 you have to press twice as hard at 5.0 inches and on my upright at 4.5 inches.

I've a long way to go before that becomes a serious limitation to me, but now I know when I'll need a grand!
_________________________
Ian Russell
Schiedmayer & Soehne, 1925 Model 14, 55" upright
Ibach, 1922 49" upright (project piano)

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#1949717 - 08/27/12 09:30 AM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: worldlinerai]
Steve Cohen Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 10479
Loc: Maryland/DC/No. VA
Originally Posted By: worldlinerai
The chronology of the Yamaha grands on the Japanese website shows all the previous models of the Yamaha Grands.

http://jp.yamaha.com/products/musical-instruments/keyboards/about/model_history_gp/

Apparently, the C6 did not appear until October 1994 when Yamaha decided to merge the G series into the C series. Because there was going to be a conflict as G5 and C5 were both defined, Yamaha renumbered the C5 to C6 while the G5 became the new C5.

Therefore, the older C5s are ancestors of the current C6.

BTW, my first post.


It is interesting that the chart omitted the model GO, which was the predecessor of the G1. We sold quite a few in the early- to mid-60s.
_________________________
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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#1949727 - 08/27/12 09:55 AM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: Withindale]
ChrisVenables Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/09
Posts: 727
Loc: Hampshire, England
Originally Posted By: Withindale


Chris, thanks for putting up your great pictures - I had been wondering how much key lengths increased on longer models.

Would you, or someone else, please explain precisely why the longer keys are more responsive and controllable?

Key dip and down weight are presumably much the same but, from the pictures, the position of the hammer strike points appears to be a bit farther back on the C6.




Hi Ian

Ando ably answered your query re the key length - thanks Ando.

Regarding the key dip/weight question, yes, all C series grands have the same key dip and playing weights.

Regarding the strike point question, as the C6 has longer strings, so the hammers have to be, as you put it, 'a bit farther back' to allow for the correct strike point ratios which are about the same on C3 and C6.
_________________________
Tech. & Partner: Venables Pianos
Yamaha Piano UK main dealer and Grand Piano Centre
Stocking new Yamaha, Petrof and Venables & Son

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#1949762 - 08/27/12 11:25 AM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: ChrisVenables]
Withindale Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/09/11
Posts: 1940
Loc: Suffolk, England
Originally Posted By: ChrisVenables
Regarding the strike point question, as the C6 has longer strings, so the hammers have to be, as you put it, 'a bit farther back' to allow for the correct strike point ratios which are about the same on C3 and C6.

I see, geometry works in the pianist's favour.

Thank you, Chris.
_________________________
Ian Russell
Schiedmayer & Soehne, 1925 Model 14, 55" upright
Ibach, 1922 49" upright (project piano)

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#1949766 - 08/27/12 11:34 AM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: jawhitti]
BDB Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21530
Loc: Oakland
However, keys that are too long bend enough to give a spongy feel to them. That is the problem with old Duo-Art grands, where the keys were extended to stretch under the spool box for the player mechanism.
_________________________
Semipro Tech

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#1949842 - 08/27/12 01:47 PM Re: Is the Yamaha C6 an unusual piano [Re: jawhitti]
Stevester Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/04/03
Posts: 2851
Loc: New Jersey
The XAs look interesting but I would hate to ask the price. Things are always being improved upon. I must admit I like the music desk opening up a bit, maybe I should have the kid next door take his wood shop router to mine (just kidding). And I don't doubt the new wire will do something for tone. At least Yamaha is doing everything they can to build the best piano they can. I am just glad I bought my C3 when I did 3 years back, jeepers prices have gone up.
_________________________
"The true character of a man can be determined by witnessing what he does when no one is watching".

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