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#2001646 - 12/19/12 10:33 AM Has anyone played on both a Fazioli and a Hamburg Steinway?
Serge Marinkovic Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/11/09
Posts: 342
Loc: United States
I was wondering if anyone of our members can comment on the touch of the Fazioli versus Hamburg Steinway? Both are hard to access but perhaps someone can be descriptive for me?
_________________________
Serge P. Marinkovic, MD


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#2001648 - 12/19/12 10:41 AM Re: Has anyone played on both a Fazioli and a Hamburg Steinway? [Re: Serge Marinkovic]
sophial Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/11/05
Posts: 3475
Loc: US
Yes I have played both. The action on both was wonderful but it's hard to completely divorce touch response from sound. The Fazioli is very precise, responsive and transparent in touch and sound. Beautiful but cool-- silver. The Hamburg is likewise incredibly responsive, buttery smooth, and the sound is warmer, richer and more colorful-- golden. I thought both were fantastic but my heart and soul went for the Hamburg Steinway!.


Sophia

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#2001663 - 12/19/12 11:27 AM Re: Has anyone played on both a Fazioli and a Hamburg Steinway? [Re: Serge Marinkovic]
AZNpiano Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5513
Loc: Orange County, CA
Yes, I've played on both.

The Hamburg Steinway is a magnificent instrument. It's a pianist's piano. Once you practice on it, it will make all the other pianos sound inferior. It has a giant range of colors, from the softest ppp to the loudest ffff. The touch is a bit on the heavy end, but you can get used to it if you practice regularly on it. I think I was spoiled by having access to a Hamburg for four years in college. Now they lock it away in storage until concerts.

Fazioli is also a great instrument. Its tone is more mellow, and it sings more. Its action is a little harder to control. Some people describe it as having "a life of its own." But the tone is gorgeous. I can't imagine ever making a harsh sound out of it.

Both instruments are so good, they instantly make you sound like a better pianist. But they are also both really, really expensive. If you want to compare the touch, I think the Hamburg Steinway is heavier, but it is more precise, meaning it does exactly what you want it to do. I didn't spend as much time on the Fazioli, so maybe in time I'd be able to control it as well.
_________________________
Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member

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#2001665 - 12/19/12 11:33 AM Re: Has anyone played on both a Fazioli and a Hamburg Steinway? [Re: Serge Marinkovic]
bennevis Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5280
I've played on both on several occasions.

As have already been mentioned, it's difficult to divorce touch from sound and tone color, but based on my own experiences, I find the Fazioli F278 more 'precise' in feel, and I feel more in control playing on it than the several Steinway Ds I've played on. But then the Fazioli has more fundamentals in its tone all through its range than the Steinway, whose sound is more colored (or colorful, depending on youir perspective).
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

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#2001715 - 12/19/12 01:32 PM Re: Has anyone played on both a Fazioli and a Hamburg Steinway? [Re: AZNpiano]
BruceD Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/01
Posts: 18138
Loc: Victoria, BC
Originally Posted By: AZNpiano
Yes, I've played on both.

]...]
Fazioli is also a great instrument. Its tone is more mellow, and it sings more. [...]


That's contrary to almost all that I have read about Fazioli and its comparison with Steinway, including the above post by sophial. However, not having played a Fazioli, I can't add my experience.

I would think, however, that one would need to play several instruments of each brand before forming any conclusive observations.

Regards,
_________________________
BruceD
- - - - -
Estonia 190

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#2001725 - 12/19/12 01:51 PM Re: Has anyone played on both a Fazioli and a Hamburg Steinway? [Re: BruceD]
bennevis Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5280
Originally Posted By: BruceD
Originally Posted By: AZNpiano
Yes, I've played on both.

]...]
Fazioli is also a great instrument. Its tone is more mellow, and it sings more. [...]


That's contrary to almost all that I have read about Fazioli and its comparison with Steinway, including the above post by sophial. However, not having played a Fazioli, I can't add my experience.

I would think, however, that one would need to play several instruments of each brand before forming any conclusive observations.

Regards,


Depending on how the Fazioli is voiced by the technician, you can get it to sound mellower and sweeter than a Steinway, but in my experience, Faziolis tend to sound brighter, but with deeper sounding bass due to the strong fundamentals. If you get the chance, listen to Andrea Bachetti's Goldberg (mellow Fazioli F278) and compare the sound to Nikolai Demidenko's Bach-Busoni Vol.2 (more brilliant Fazioli F278).
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

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#2001750 - 12/19/12 02:38 PM Re: Has anyone played on both a Fazioli and a Hamburg Steinway? [Re: sophial]
MarkH Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/16/08
Posts: 862
Loc: Seattle, WA
Originally Posted By: sophial
The Fazioli is very precise, responsive and transparent in touch and sound. Beautiful but cool-- silver. The Hamburg is likewise incredibly responsive, buttery smooth, and the sound is warmer, richer and more colorful-- golden.


I've played both. During undergrad I was able to play for hours per week on a Hamburg Steinway, and this summer I was able to spend a few hours playing a Fazioli F308. I think Sophia's above description is very good. IMO, the amount of dependability in the action is mostly a factor of how well-regulated the piano is - the two that I played were both very responsive. The main difference is really the sound you get out of them. As has been stated, the Fazioli sounds like the fundamental of each note is a stronger component of the sound (silvery), while on a Hamburg Steinway, there are more powerful overtones (golden). So in big, fast passages, the Steinway is more likely to generate beautiful, shimmering sound-clouds, while on the Fazioli, individual notes will ring beautifully but be more clearly distinguishable. This is why it is sometimes said that Faziolis are great for Baroque and classical (where polyphony is often more important), while Steinways are great for romantic and modern works. If only we could all afford both! If I'm ever lucky enough to be deciding between buying one or the other, I would have to spend many hours comparing them side by side. There's no obvious winner - they're both simply spectacular.
_________________________
Currently Studying: Bach - English Suite No. 5; Debussy - Pagodes; Brahms - Ballade Op. 10 No. 3; Alkan - Cello Sonata 4th movement (duet transcription by Alkan)

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