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#1995303 - 12/06/12 04:51 AM How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone)
New NewB Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/05/12
Posts: 18
Hi. The closest Kawai place is an hour away. The closest Roland place is a bit longer, in a different direction. I was able to play a fp7f at a different place so have an idea about the Roland HP series.

This is what I'm thinking: at the higher end models, I probably can't go wrong with either the HP505 or the equally highly recommended Kawai ca65. But I don't have the time to drive all over the place to check these out, plus these pianos aren't held in stock.

Do I call the store and simply say, "you haven't seen me in your store, but I'll give you $2800 for xyz piano" and buy whichever says ok or comes closest?

Also, regarding price, how do I find out what the actual invoice is on these things? If the seller says "yeah, but I still need to feed my kids", how do I know whether or not he's really not going to have any profit at the end of the deal (meaning, is there any transparency?)

Thanks.

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#1995308 - 12/06/12 05:13 AM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: New NewB]
ando Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3515
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Don't do it! Despite both being quality products, personal preference is too important to ignore. Why don't you call and see if they can get either of these models in to try. I wouldn't spend around $3,000 on something I hadn't tried. There have been vastly different reports from both of these models in terms of which one people prefer. Don't expect any kind of consensus on these pianos just because they are high end models. Also, and hour or two of travel is nothing compared to how long you'll have the thing. Whatever you think now about these products will change after you play them. You don't know what you are dealing with until you play them.

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#1995311 - 12/06/12 05:42 AM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: New NewB]
Kos Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/29/11
Posts: 77
I agree, buying without trying is not a very good idea, especially when it comes to musical instruments.
_________________________
"There is nothing to piano playing besides producing the appropriate velocities on the appropriate keys at the appropriate time" (c) qvfarns

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#1995312 - 12/06/12 05:42 AM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: New NewB]
Kawai James Online   content
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 8875
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Yes, definitely play-test the instrument for yourself before buying.

As ando correctly notes, when you think about how long you'll be sitting down, playing the piano for, spending an hour or two in the car really isn't worth worrying about.

Cheers,
James
x
_________________________
Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.

"Richard, none of us could forget you have a CLP-990." - EssBrace, 2014

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#1995349 - 12/06/12 08:23 AM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: New NewB]
spanishbuddha Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/08/09
Posts: 2323
Loc: UK
The price of these models is not IMHO cheap, and I would not want to part with that sort of money sight unseen. Never mind the arguments already given about personal preference of sound and touch of a musical instrument.

I would go further and want to examine the specific item before buying it.

Ignore my argument if you're loaded. (Just send some my way smile ).

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#1995373 - 12/06/12 09:31 AM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: New NewB]
dmd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 1779
Loc: Pennsylvania
Not to mention ...

Even after you try it at the music store you may take it home and find out that it does not sound the same as you remember in the store. Different environments can cause differences in the sound you hear.

If possible, try to negotiate a "trial period" of some sort where you can return it with only a modest restocking fee ... and have it in writing.

Before you purchase it, you can command their attention.l After you purchase it, it has to be in writing.
_________________________
Don

My current system: Kawai ES7 + Focal CMS40 Powered Monitors, SennHeiser HD555 Phones, Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 audio interface, Mackie ProFX8 Mixer, Ravenscroft275, True Keys American Grand, Ivory II American Concert D, Steinway Basic, Galaxy Vintage D, True Pianos, Pianoteq, Alicia's Keys

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#1995389 - 12/06/12 10:04 AM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: New NewB]
PianoWorksATL Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/19/09
Posts: 2691
Loc: Atlanta, GA
Originally Posted By: New NewB
Also, regarding price, how do I find out what the actual invoice is on these things?
Invest hundreds of thousands (to millions) of dollars in a store, employees and inventory to become a dealer.

Does Home Depot open their books when you buy an appliance? How about Best Buy when you buy a home theater setup? Even the car industry, when a dealer will show you the "factory invoice", where does the money come from when they agree to sell it for $1 more? What is the invoice on a desktop computer?

The idea of transparency is BS. In the current industry culture, MAP pricing is the closest thing to an equalizer. MAP is far from perfect, but it's something. When stores (not Amazon.com automated warehouses) dip below MAP, they are cutting into operating costs. On the whole, the music industry runs on one of the smallest margins of any that offers even slightly durable goods.

Sorry for the rant, but pricing for digital pianos has never been more transparent. Driving an hour for a $3k+ investment is reasonable. Trying and selecting an instrument as others have suggested is the right thing to do.
_________________________
Sam Bennett
PianoWorks - Atlanta Piano Dealer
Bösendorfer, Estonia, Seiler, Grotrian, Weber & Hailun
Pre-Owned: Yamaha, Kawai, Steinway & other fine pianos
Full Restoration Shop
www.PianoWorks.com
www.youtube.com/PianoWorksAtlanta

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#1995395 - 12/06/12 10:36 AM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: New NewB]
dmd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 1779
Loc: Pennsylvania
Originally Posted By: New NewB
Also, regarding price, how do I find out what the actual invoice is on these things?


The closest thing to finding out a "fair" price is right here at pianoworld.com

In fact, there is a thread at the top of this section which addresses that very thing. Just browse around through that and you may get some idea of what sort of price is normal.

More important than getting the absolute lowest price is getting an instrument you enjoy playing. If you enjoy playing it you are getting a good deal. If you do not like it, it is a bad deal ... regardless of what price you paid for it.

Take your time and find the right instrument for you.




Edited by dmd (12/06/12 10:37 AM)
_________________________
Don

My current system: Kawai ES7 + Focal CMS40 Powered Monitors, SennHeiser HD555 Phones, Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 audio interface, Mackie ProFX8 Mixer, Ravenscroft275, True Keys American Grand, Ivory II American Concert D, Steinway Basic, Galaxy Vintage D, True Pianos, Pianoteq, Alicia's Keys

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#1995415 - 12/06/12 11:40 AM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: New NewB]
New NewB Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/05/12
Posts: 18
Thanks, everyone. I called the Roland store about the HP-505, he doesn't have it in stock. He wants me to put down a $200 deposit before he gets the piano in the store and said if I don't like the piano, I'll get my money back because he wants me to be happy. I don't want to sound cynical, but to me that means "good luck getting the $200 back because I know there's something here you'll like and will buy".

I'm old school and want to trust the honor system, but I've also been screwed many times in the past.

I want to try the Kawai CA65 too. I called the only place around (within 2 hrs) and he said he doesn't have the CA65 but has a CA63 and can give me a heck of a deal on it. He wasn't able to tell me the difference between the 63 and 65, so I told him I'd read up on it. He said he can order a 65. When I asked if I'd be obligated to buy it, what if I didn't like it, he laughed and said yes, I'd be obligated to buy it.

I just read the Kawai web pages on the difference between the two (63 and 65), it's all marketing, so I have to decipher it (meaning, explore this site a little more).

So, 2 questions:
1) Thoughts on the deposit at the Roland place
2) How does one try a piano that's not in stock (CA65) and am obligated to buy before getting it in the store? (an initial quick search indicated the CA63 has a heavier touch and doesn't have "let off", 65 is lighter and has let off... which I guess is their version of "escapement")
Thanks!

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#1995424 - 12/06/12 12:03 PM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: New NewB]
dmd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 1779
Loc: Pennsylvania
About the deposit ...

This fits under the category of my earlier suggestion.

Get it in writing.

The easiest way to accomplish this would be to email them about the deposit and have them REPLY with the bit about getting their money back (not a store credit). Or ask them to send you a contract for you to sign with the deposit amount designated.

They may not wish to do this.

If not ... move on.
_________________________
Don

My current system: Kawai ES7 + Focal CMS40 Powered Monitors, SennHeiser HD555 Phones, Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 audio interface, Mackie ProFX8 Mixer, Ravenscroft275, True Keys American Grand, Ivory II American Concert D, Steinway Basic, Galaxy Vintage D, True Pianos, Pianoteq, Alicia's Keys

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#1995427 - 12/06/12 12:12 PM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: dmd]
ando Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3515
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Originally Posted By: dmd
About the deposit ...

This fits under the category of my earlier suggestion.

Get it in writing.

The easiest way to accomplish this would be to email them about the deposit and have them REPLY with the bit about getting their money back (not a store credit). Or ask them to send you a contract for you to sign with the deposit amount designated.

They may not wish to do this.

If not ... move on.



What is the deposit for if it is guaranteed to be handed back? It doesn't make sense. Deposits, by definition, are designed to be potential punishments if you don't fulfill specific criteria.

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#1995450 - 12/06/12 01:03 PM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: ando]
spanishbuddha Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/08/09
Posts: 2323
Loc: UK
Originally Posted By: ando

What is the deposit for if it is guaranteed to be handed back? It doesn't make sense.

+1

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#1995452 - 12/06/12 01:05 PM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: ando]
dmd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 1779
Loc: Pennsylvania
Originally Posted By: ando
What is the deposit for if it is guaranteed to be handed back? It doesn't make sense. Deposits, by definition, are designed to be potential punishments if you don't fulfill specific criteria.


I agree. It seems odd.

Perhaps it is their way of trying to determine how serious you really are before they bring in a new DP.

Actually, I cannot imagine a music store sending for a DP just because you wish to try it out.

But, asking for it in writing will sort all that out.
_________________________
Don

My current system: Kawai ES7 + Focal CMS40 Powered Monitors, SennHeiser HD555 Phones, Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 audio interface, Mackie ProFX8 Mixer, Ravenscroft275, True Keys American Grand, Ivory II American Concert D, Steinway Basic, Galaxy Vintage D, True Pianos, Pianoteq, Alicia's Keys

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#1995473 - 12/06/12 01:41 PM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: dmd]
ando Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/10
Posts: 3515
Loc: Melbourne, Australia
Originally Posted By: dmd
Originally Posted By: ando
What is the deposit for if it is guaranteed to be handed back? It doesn't make sense. Deposits, by definition, are designed to be potential punishments if you don't fulfill specific criteria.


I agree. It seems odd.

Perhaps it is their way of trying to determine how serious you really are before they bring in a new DP.

Actually, I cannot imagine a music store sending for a DP just because you wish to try it out.

But, asking for it in writing will sort all that out.



It does happen. At a school where I work, we have instruments sent out to us where they can be evaluated and sent back if they are unsatisfactory. Obviously we only place the delivery order if we are very serious about taking it. This would all come down to the individual retailer though and whether he thinks he can shift it anyway, or whether it can be returned to the wholesaler.

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#1995643 - 12/06/12 08:14 PM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: New NewB]
New NewB Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/05/12
Posts: 18
Hi. Thanks for all the info.

I found a CA65 about 1.5 hrs away. Cool. Will go this wknd.

I still can't track down an HP505. As I said, I played the f7f. I know the HP505 will feel the same, but how different might it sound in a cabinet? I agree I should see before I buy, but I did play the fp7f. Can that be considered close enough?

Thanks.

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#1995649 - 12/06/12 08:23 PM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: New NewB]
Dave Horne Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/07/04
Posts: 5276
Loc: Vught, The Netherlands
Will go this wknd.

Gld t hr tht. Hv gd tm.
_________________________
website

mp3\wav files

AvantGrand N3, CP5

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#1995665 - 12/06/12 09:37 PM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: Dave Horne]
PianoWorksATL Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/19/09
Posts: 2691
Loc: Atlanta, GA
Originally Posted By: New NewB
Can that be considered close enough?
That depends. How good is your imagination? The difference in speakers is night & day. And in reality, the connection of action to sound is where the rubber meets the road. I'm happy my FP-7F has speakers when I want them, but I primarily play through headphones, so that was my important test.

If you were doing test where you played through headphones on both, then I would say it is close enough.
Originally Posted By: Dave Horne
Will go this wknd.

Gld t hr tht. Hv gd tm.
You forgot fun with Autocorrect. wink
_________________________
Sam Bennett
PianoWorks - Atlanta Piano Dealer
Bösendorfer, Estonia, Seiler, Grotrian, Weber & Hailun
Pre-Owned: Yamaha, Kawai, Steinway & other fine pianos
Full Restoration Shop
www.PianoWorks.com
www.youtube.com/PianoWorksAtlanta

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#1995670 - 12/06/12 09:57 PM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: dmd]
rocket88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/06
Posts: 3158
Originally Posted By: dmd
Not to mention ...

Even after you try it at the music store you may take it home and find out that it does not sound the same as you remember in the store. Different environments can cause differences in the sound you hear.


This is 100% true with acoustic pianos, but I do not think it applies much to a digital, at least not enough to make or break a deal.

Just to make sure, if you play each piano with the same set of headphones, you will get an identical playback medium of the sound.
_________________________
Music teacher and piano player.

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#1995783 - 12/07/12 06:09 AM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: Dave Horne]
New NewB Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/05/12
Posts: 18
Originally Posted By: Dave Horne
Will go this wknd.

Gld t hr tht. Hv gd tm.


hm... vwls? smile

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#1995786 - 12/07/12 06:16 AM Re: How to buy from a distant store (i.e., over the phone) [Re: rocket88]
New NewB Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/05/12
Posts: 18
Originally Posted By: rocket88
[quote=dmd]

Just to make sure, if you play each piano with the same set of headphones, you will get an identical playback medium of the sound.



Great idea. Then no one will know how badly I play.

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