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#2037399 - 02/22/13 08:54 AM voicing an estonia
peabody Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/19/11
Posts: 57
Loc: nc
Hi to all...
I have an new estonia 168. It is over a year since new and I am thinking that it needs some voicing work. The treble portion seems a bit weak and dull. I am thinking of having it voiced to bring out its presence and add a little brilliance. The salesman who has been servicing it has said that estonias should not be voiced any brighter than mine is at this point. Would those of you who have experience with estonia pianos please comment?
Thanks
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Peabody

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#2037461 - 02/22/13 11:34 AM Re: voicing an estonia [Re: peabody]
Supply Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/11/06
Posts: 3919
Loc: Vancouver Island, BC, Canada
Voicing is essentially customizing the instrument tone to the client's preferences and the location's acoustic characteristics. If your piano is placed in a room with a relative abundance of soft surfaces and sound-absorbing materials, this would typically make the treble sound dull. While the technician should have a qualified opinion on the tone, his/her job is to facilitate between the instrument and the owner to maximize the performance and pleasure that the instrument brings to the player. In other words, the owner has last say, really. I would suggest moving ahead in voicing by small steps, in order to not overshoot the target sound.
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#2037469 - 02/22/13 11:54 AM Re: voicing an estonia [Re: peabody]
pianotune2 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/01/12
Posts: 61
Loc: ks
Like Jurgen said it is ultimately your piano and should be voiced the way you like it. Your technician should be able to voice the piano up or down to fit your taste, not just for power but tone. This procedure will require great communication between you and your tech, everyone hears differently.
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Stewart Moore
Piano Technician North Central and North East Kansas

www.pianotune2.webs.com

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#2037479 - 02/22/13 12:03 PM Re: voicing an estonia [Re: peabody]
peabody Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/19/11
Posts: 57
Loc: nc
Thanks for the responses. From your post pianotune... I have a follow up question that I have always been confused about. Is it possible to voice for more power without making the piano sound brighter?
Thanks
_________________________
Peabody

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#2037491 - 02/22/13 12:19 PM Re: voicing an estonia [Re: peabody]
beethoven986 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/20/09
Posts: 3320
Originally Posted By: peabody
Hi to all...
I have an new estonia 168. It is over a year since new and I am thinking that it needs some voicing work. The treble portion seems a bit weak and dull. I am thinking of having it voiced to bring out its presence and add a little brilliance. The salesman who has been servicing it has said that estonias should not be voiced any brighter than mine is at this point. Would those of you who have experience with estonia pianos please comment?
Thanks


Since we have not heard your piano, it's hard to know whether or not we'd agree with the salesman. On the one hand, he could have said that to avoid having to "deal with it". Or, he could have a legitimate concern. That said, Estonia uses Renner hammers and the most recent model I saw, a 225, was quite bright. Even if yours had been voiced down (resulting in a dull sound), expect for it to brighten again. Personally, I would adopt a wait and see approach.
_________________________
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M.Mus. Piano Performance & Literature 2011
PTG Associate Member
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#2037548 - 02/22/13 02:32 PM Re: voicing an estonia [Re: peabody]
pianotune2 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/01/12
Posts: 61
Loc: ks
Originally Posted By: peabody
Thanks for the responses. From your post pianotune... I have a follow up question that I have always been confused about. Is it possible to voice for more power without making the piano sound brighter?
Thanks



It is possible to gain power without having to brighten the piano. This can be done with voicing work on the hammer, as well as regulating the action.
_________________________
Stewart Moore
Piano Technician North Central and North East Kansas

www.pianotune2.webs.com

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#2037631 - 02/22/13 05:23 PM Re: voicing an estonia [Re: peabody]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7434
Loc: France
Many modern instruments are really not voiced enough (pre voiced) from the start, hence the loss of lenght in tone after a few years, hardening of the low shoulders and drop in tone.

Pre voicing can be (+-) done again an again, so it is not so much of a problem in the end, but it is so much better to have it done well at last when the piano is installed.

SOme hammers provide some sort of immediate brillancy that can lend the voicer to think the voicing is done.

In my experience the real brillancy and energy , is obtained by playing and breaking in the hammers, beginning from a may be too round tone.





Edited by Olek (02/22/13 05:26 PM)
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It is critical that you call your Senators and Representatives and ask them to cosponsor S. 2587 and H.R. 5052. Getting your legislators to cosponsor these bills


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#2037763 - 02/22/13 10:46 PM Re: voicing an estonia [Re: peabody]
Ed McMorrow, RPT Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/09/12
Posts: 1959
Loc: Seattle, WA USA
Starting in the portion of the keyboard compass almost two octaves above middle C; piano tone becomes extremely sensitive to hammer weight. This area is often called the "killer octave". To open up the tone here careful shaping of the hammer sides, tails and even reducing the overall width slightly will bring a significant increase in power, sustain, and brightness while reducing the percussive knock of the hammer impact. This work can't be done in the home.

You need a large disc sander or small belt sander to do this and it makes dust. You must unscrew the hammer shank to do this sanding. Also this hammer weight reduction will make the front key-leads too much for the hammers-so removing leads is part of the job.

This deeper level of tone regulation is the only way to bring up dynamic range significantly-however if the felt density is too much-the brilliance will rise too much and needling will not bring it down without shredding the felt to pieces.

This is why some pianos with the hard-pressed hammers from Renner, Yamaha, etc, have to have the hammers replaced with one that have less dense felt to satisfy artist clients.
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In a seemingly infinite universe-infinite human creativity is-seemingly possible

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#2037817 - 02/23/13 03:58 AM Re: voicing an estonia [Re: peabody]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7434
Loc: France
Yes lighter hammers help to have a more crisp tone but there is a loss in dynamics at the same time.

Particularely, the FFF level is attained soon and have a less "robust" fundation.

But that style suits well some instruments.

I would tend to believe that lighter hammers must go together with a more sharp molding, so to avois the wooden impact at FF level.
_________________________
It is critical that you call your Senators and Representatives and ask them to cosponsor S. 2587 and H.R. 5052. Getting your legislators to cosponsor these bills


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#2037861 - 02/23/13 08:55 AM Re: voicing an estonia [Re: peabody]
BoseEric Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 731
Loc: Fairfield County, CT
The Estonia dealer in Raleigh, Richard Ruggero, is an excellent technician and could be of great help in this area.
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RPT. In the business: Feurich pianos, Neupert harpsichords, Hidrau benches, piano technician

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#2037912 - 02/23/13 11:16 AM Re: voicing an estonia [Re: Olek]
Ed McMorrow, RPT Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/09/12
Posts: 1959
Loc: Seattle, WA USA
Olek,
The softer, less dense felt and cold-pressed gluing process that the Ronsen piano hammer company uses produces a hammer that responds best to the lightening protocol. They play into a very stable brilliance configuration while maintaining the soft playability with an increase in dynamic range. I have produced pianos with very light hammers for years and some can reach decibel levels of 130 (yes I know accurate measurement of this requires special considerations so I will not be held to it like a scientific specification) when played with maximum force yet still retain the softest playability. So I cannot report any loss of power directly linked to hammer mass.
_________________________
In a seemingly infinite universe-infinite human creativity is-seemingly possible

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#2038189 - 02/23/13 10:19 PM Re: voicing an estonia [Re: peabody]
Dave B Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/01/11
Posts: 1945
Loc: Philadelphia area
The Estonia's that I've come across have plenty of power and only need string voicing. Seating, leveling, etc.

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#2038246 - 02/24/13 12:46 AM Re: voicing an estonia [Re: peabody]
rxd Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 1703
Loc: London, England
Peabody,
How was the tonal balance of the piano when you bought it?
As a piano plays in, the most used notes get brighter and louder first. This is normally the middle of the piano. It is possible that your piano has become unbalanced. Either the middle needs to come down in tone or the treble come up, (which is your initial preference). In your original post you ask for more presence and brilliance in your treble, then in a supplementary question, ask of the treble can be louder yet retain the same tone quality. The answer to all that is yes, within limits and given a competent technician.

I find it interesting that you say 'the salesman that looks after your piano' and not 'the piano technician that you bought the piano from'. That says a lot to me. Seek out a technician familiar with tone regulation.

It is also possible to practice repetitive exercises, note learning, etc., in the area that you want more presence and brilliance. That will bring it up.


Edited by rxd (02/24/13 01:07 AM)
_________________________
Concert & Recording tuner-tech, London, England.
"in theory, practice and theory are the same thing. In practice, they're not." - Lawrence P. 'Yogi' Berra.

Eschew obfuscation.



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#2038308 - 02/24/13 07:08 AM Re: voicing an estonia [Re: Ed McMorrow, RPT]
Olek Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7434
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: Ed McMorrow, RPT
Olek,
The softer, less dense felt and cold-pressed gluing process that the Ronsen piano hammer company uses produces a hammer that responds best to the lightening protocol. They play into a very stable brilliance configuration while maintaining the soft playability with an increase in dynamic range. I have produced pianos with very light hammers for years and some can reach decibel levels of 130 (yes I know accurate measurement of this requires special considerations so I will not be held to it like a scientific specification) when played with maximum force yet still retain the softest playability. So I cannot report any loss of power directly linked to hammer mass.


Thanks for the answer, do you have recorded samples of those jobs ?

Having worked on countless hightly filed hammers (that are then really light) I can notice where the part of the tone is lowered and where ther is a gain.

The trade of between mass and felt thickness is certainly to be seen on a case by case basis.

With regulation we can counteract the felt wear and change " a little" the action ratio "enveloppe" (acceleration)

At some point the sound takes that 3d dimension you state, but the same can happen with original hammers, in my opinion (if not too much damping the tone)

I tend to think that the level of inertia and action resilliency the pianists are accustomed too is also providing some tonal spectra change. if too straight, not supple enough the power raise but more weight is needed by the pianist to be in the zone where the tone can be changed.

What happens to the hammer orientation and stroke direction is what is yet uncertain to me.


Edited by Olek (02/24/13 08:30 AM)
_________________________
It is critical that you call your Senators and Representatives and ask them to cosponsor S. 2587 and H.R. 5052. Getting your legislators to cosponsor these bills


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