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#2032892 - 02/14/13 08:20 AM Kawai GE30 and Yamaha GC1
Chris H. Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/05
Posts: 2919
Loc: UK.
I had a lovely morning piano shopping at the excellent Clement pianos in Nottingham UK. Great showroom and really knowledgeable staff who were happy to leave me to play and enjoy the instruments before giving me details and info.

Anyway I posted another thread recently about looking for a new grand priced in the region of 10k (uk pounds). I'm interested in Feurich and also paying a visit to Chris Venables at some point as I have heard great things about the Hailun based pianos which offer slightly more size for the money. This morning I went to look at the Kawai GE30 because I like the brand and have been impressed with their models in the past. It's priced a little over budget but not much and is also a bit smaller at 164cm. They also had a Yamaha GC1 for similar money which was useful to compare. I own a U1 upright which I like a lot so was keen to try the GC1.

Both were nice pianos but of the two I have to say I was quite blown away by the Kawai. Nothing wrong with the Yamaha but I did feel the bass was a bit weak. If I hadn't played anything else it might not have been so obvious. Loved the Yamaha action and the sound is familiar to me and quite pleasing. In fact the action on both offered significantly more control and expression than my U1. But that Kawai was such a musical piano. There was a nice RX2 sat next to it which was better but not as much as I would have expected. The GE30 was warm and rich, quite European in sound and was capable of great dynamic and tonal range. I loved it and think that size wise it is probably perfect for my music room.

Still looking forward to trying other pianos in the same price range (and welcome suggestions) but that little Kawai is going to take some beating!

While I was there I also played the Sauter Alpha 160 because it's similar in size to the Kawai and Yamaha. Not really a fair comparison because it's three times the price! But it goes to show what you can do with a small grand piano. So clear right across the range and a very characterful instrument. I want one! But given the price difference I think the GE30 would do just fine.
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#2032975 - 02/14/13 11:16 AM Re: Kawai GE30 and Yamaha GC1 [Re: Chris H.]
RX2Bunny Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/22/12
Posts: 119
Loc: Chicago
I played GE30 during my piano search and I loved it. I didn't get it in the end as it's kinda my first (adulthood) piano and I wanted to develop more skills before i buy a grand. I feel as i advance, my requirements, taste, and preference for grand might change. So I'm setting a 2-4 years timeline for myself. I'm having a Kawai K5 and love it. But the experience of playing GE30 is still fresh in my head.

I'm already dreaming about my grand. i think we have similar budget so I'd be very interested to what you pick at the end! When i'm more ready, I'd want to try Feurich 168 as 179 might be little too big for my home. Btw, have you heard of and tried Ritmuller? many people here love it. I tried it.. the sound was pretty good to my ears but I wasn't quite impressed by the material of the piano. i felt the fallboard was really light and felt little strange. and the action was too light to me. However, I think it's good sound and good price. you might want to check it out.

p.s. oh yeah, I think the size of GE30 is perfect for my room as well!

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#2032981 - 02/14/13 11:26 AM Re: Kawai GE30 and Yamaha GC1 [Re: Chris H.]
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14139
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Quote:
Btw, have you heard of and tried Ritmuller? many people here love it. I tried it.. the sound was pretty good to my ears but I wasn't quite impressed by the material of the piano.


Make sure you're looking at the new GH series grands designed by Lothar Thomma.

http://www.ritmullerusa.com/new-models-grand.html

"Designed by L.Thoma" is right on steel frame, without it you're not looking at the pianos people have been talking about.

P.S. previous Ritmuellers or those not belonging to this particular group are entirely different specimen...

best of luck

Norbert smile


Edited by Norbert (02/14/13 11:30 AM)
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Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
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#2032986 - 02/14/13 11:29 AM Re: Kawai GE30 and Yamaha GC1 [Re: Chris H.]
Robert 45 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/18/06
Posts: 1259
Loc: Auckland New Zealand
Hello Chris,
I think that you have already made your choice. In choosing any piano, musicality would also be my most important criterion. It seems that this GE30 is the right "fit" for you in all respects.

Good luck for your purchase!

Robert.

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#2033072 - 02/14/13 02:29 PM Re: Kawai GE30 and Yamaha GC1 [Re: Chris H.]
Chris H. Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/05
Posts: 2919
Loc: UK.
Rileybunny, are you in the UK too?

I may have played Ritmuller in the past, could be mistakes but I think they had them in Jaques Samuels down in London. It was a few years ago so if I did they would not be the same as new ones as Norbert pointed out.

Robert, you could well be right. I don't intend to rush this purchase as I've been there before and regretted it. It doesn't matter to me if it happens this year or next and to be honest there could be some life changes ahead which might have an impact, but hopefully not in a bad way. At least I know that there is something out there that I could really love and enjoy within a sensible budget. I would be more than happy with the Kawai. But I still intend to enjoy the search and play as many pianos as possible including anything that might come up on the used market. A good second hand purchase could save me a lot of money so I can't rule that out.
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#2033119 - 02/14/13 04:06 PM Re: Kawai GE30 and Yamaha GC1 [Re: Chris H.]
maurus Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/21/11
Posts: 819
Of the new pianos in this price range that I played while searching mine I found the Kawai GE30 the most attractive one. It had this warm tone and musicality as you say.

In the end I spent quite a bit more as I made the mistake to play too much on more expensive pianos (such as Bluethners, Försters, and even a few Steinways and one Bösendorfer) - but again was drawn to a small Kawai as the best compromise (for me).
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Shigeru Kawai SK-2, etc.

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#2033126 - 02/14/13 04:11 PM Re: Kawai GE30 and Yamaha GC1 [Re: Chris H.]
Chris H. Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/05
Posts: 2919
Loc: UK.
Haha, fortunately I don't have the means to be drawn by more and more expensive pianos! I can see that it is easily done though.
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Pianist and piano teacher.

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#2033157 - 02/14/13 04:49 PM Re: Kawai GE30 and Yamaha GC1 [Re: Chris H.]
Steven Y. A. Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/14/13
Posts: 291
Loc: Toronto
check out Hailun, too. Many people rate them over (or at least as good) to Yamaha &Kawai
_________________________
PLEYEL P124

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#2033385 - 02/14/13 09:58 PM Re: Kawai GE30 and Yamaha GC1 [Re: Chris H.]
RX2Bunny Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/22/12
Posts: 119
Loc: Chicago
Chris, no I live in Chicago

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#2033488 - 02/15/13 01:38 AM Re: Kawai GE30 and Yamaha GC1 [Re: Norbert]
turandot Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/27/07
Posts: 7219
Loc: torrance, CA
Originally Posted By: Norbert

Make sure you're looking at the new GH series grands designed by Lothar Thomma.
"Designed by L.Thoma" is right on steel frame, without it you're not looking at the pianos people have been talking about.
Norbert smile


Yes, and if you're looking for jeans, remember that only genuine Levi's have the little red tab on the pocket. Without it, they might be leftover Jordache stock. shocked

Chris,

If you do run across a Ritmuller GH, be sure to put it through its paces and listen to it critically without getting hung up on a name on the frame. It should be able to stand on its musicality without a designer label.

PS Bear in mind too that you can find horse meat in places other than your lasagna. smile
_________________________
Will Johnny Come Marching Home?
The fate of the modern wartime soldier

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#2033496 - 02/15/13 02:05 AM Re: Kawai GE30 and Yamaha GC1 [Re: Chris H.]
Chris H. Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/05
Posts: 2919
Loc: UK.
I'm not sure that the new Ritmuller pianos are available over here, quick search doesn't come up with anything.

Steven, we don't get Hailun either but there are similar instruments.
_________________________
Pianist and piano teacher.

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#2033547 - 02/15/13 06:40 AM Re: Kawai GE30 and Yamaha GC1 [Re: Chris H.]
rocklandpiano Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/26/13
Posts: 19

I think that you have already made your choice. In choosing any piano, musicality would also be my most important criterion.
It seems that this Yamaha gc1 is the right "fit" for you in all respects.

Good luck!
_________________________
Piano players in Monsey, New York have relied on Charles Flaum since before 1990 for piano tuning, piano repairs and sage piano advice. Monsey, a family oriented village in Rockland County, is full of piano lovers with cherished pianos in their homes..

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