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#1979239 - 10/27/12 10:20 AM THE OLD JAPANESE PIANOS, KAWAI & YAMAHA
music-P Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/22/12
Posts: 60
Loc: Philippines

I just encountered a 1969-1979 (don't know exact year) yamaha u1 and a kawai k8 1961. When i played both I leaned towards the yamaha, why? Because despite yamaha's reputation of being bright somehow it was fairly clear NOT BRIGHT, and a little mellow, sweet. The kawai was fine but it lacked something, like clarity and it was quite sluggish.....

Guys i need your advices so that i would get a great deal

By the way, the yamaha u1 is 2,419.55 USD and the kawai k8 is 1,935.64 USD

Once again I thabk you all

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#1979243 - 10/27/12 10:42 AM Re: THE OLD JAPANESE PIANOS, KAWAI & YAMAHA [Re: music-P]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 20766
Loc: New York City
Since you prefer the Yamaha's tone and touch it seems like the way to go. You should definitely have a 40+ year old piano tech inspected before buying it. Whether the prices a reasonable, I can only leave to someone else.

#1979267 - 10/27/12 12:12 PM Re: THE OLD JAPANESE PIANOS, KAWAI & YAMAHA [Re: music-P]
Rickster Offline

Registered: 03/25/06
Posts: 9319
Loc: Georgia, USA
Without looking at the pianos and playing them myself, it is hard to say...

However, like I've mentioned to you already, I have both an older Kawai upright, and an older Yamaha grand. Both are the best pianos I've owned so far.

In terms of the prices, they seem to be leaning toward used retail, but that is not a bad thing; used piano dealers are in business to make money. I don't think the prices are way out of line, though maybe not a bargain. You can always make a counter offer.

I will say that it is rare to see a Yamaha U1 for much less than $2.5K (of any age) in my neck of the woods.

Good luck, and keep us informed.

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

#1979296 - 10/27/12 01:34 PM Re: THE OLD JAPANESE PIANOS, KAWAI & YAMAHA [Re: Rickster]
Robert 45 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/18/06
Posts: 1501
Loc: Auckland New Zealand
Both Yamaha and Kawai are excellent piano makers. With pianos of that age and probably with the added challenge of a tropical climate, everything depends on how well the piano has been maintained and its general care.
However, I would say that a 51 year old Kawai vertical piano could be in need of major repairs and if the Yamaha appeals to you,it would be the more sensible choice.
I would advise caution and ensure that your preferred instrument is thoroughly assessed by a competent technician.

Kind regards,


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#1979316 - 10/27/12 03:04 PM Re: THE OLD JAPANESE PIANOS, KAWAI & YAMAHA [Re: pianoloverus]
Melodialworks Music Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/19/05
Posts: 1319
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
You should definitely have a 40+ year old piano tech inspected before buying it.

I don't understand why the piano tech needs to be 40 years old, or older. Surely there are younger techs out there that could do the work. I also don't understand why the piano tech needs to be inspected. Surely it's the piano that should be inspected.
Melodialworks Music

#1979318 - 10/27/12 03:15 PM Re: THE OLD JAPANESE PIANOS, KAWAI & YAMAHA [Re: music-P]
Bobpickle Offline

Gold Supporter until July 10  2014

Registered: 05/24/12
Posts: 1389
Loc: Cameron Park, California
Bernhard - Always Have a Plan

#1979324 - 10/27/12 03:28 PM Re: THE OLD JAPANESE PIANOS, KAWAI & YAMAHA [Re: music-P]
BDB Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 23182
Loc: Oakland
However, if you would like to pay for my doctor's appointment, feel free to offer.
Semipro Tech

#1979435 - 10/27/12 08:10 PM Re: THE OLD JAPANESE PIANOS, KAWAI & YAMAHA [Re: music-P]
PianoWorksATL Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/19/09
Posts: 3016
Loc: Atlanta, GA
The age/serial of a Yamaha is usually very easy to find and confirm. It is (hopefully) a 7-digit number on the right of the piano, just inside the lid. 6-digits would be before 1970-71.

It sounds silly to say, but I only recommend buying pianos that you like. The way you describe the Yamaha indicates a definite preference to me. What is the value for you for a piano that you don't like to play?
Sam Bennett
PianoWorks - Atlanta Piano Dealer
Bösendorfer, Estonia, Seiler, Grotrian, Weber & Hailun
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#1979510 - 10/28/12 01:09 AM Re: THE OLD JAPANESE PIANOS, KAWAI & YAMAHA [Re: music-P]
music-P Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/22/12
Posts: 60
Loc: Philippines
By the way the yamaha is still negotiable and the kawai not

By Monday (eastern time)i will be going to another piano shop looking for other pianos too and since its near the yamaha and kawai i would most likely go there with a person with a sharp and judgemental ear. She's not a pianist but she knows about pianos

Edited by music-P (10/28/12 01:13 AM)

#1984950 - 11/10/12 08:34 AM Re: THE OLD JAPANESE PIANOS, KAWAI & YAMAHA [Re: music-P]
NoteByNote Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/02/12
Posts: 13
Loc: Seoul
i a few days ago replaced my kawai gs30 with a yamaha g-5, slightly bigger than gs30. i am Very satisfied with this YMAHA. actually i was a man who typically disliked bright tone of yamaha. It was not. every piano, every tone and touch, even in the same brand and same model. i found the g5 has mellower tone very similar to the traditional kawaian and unlike to yamaha C family-c3, c5, c7. but never played c6. so i guess it is buyer's ears and fingers that make a decision when selecting a piano. not kawai, not yamaha.

good luck


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