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#2507618 - 02/05/16 02:54 PM Please help with new piano purchase
BethRose Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/05/16
Posts: 6
Hi everyone. I just joined.
I currently have a Schiller grand Piano (ANYONE ever heard of this? I haven't found a soul so far, even in the piano world!) It was my grandmother's and she bought it used in 1962(?) They stopped making them around the 1930s I believe so it is way past its life expectancy. It is very very flat (my teacher said 132). It can be tuned to itself but not be in tune. Because of this and the age and condition of the piano I am looking to upgrade.
I am adult who recently just restarted playing. I took lessons in my childhood but never practiced and never enjoyed it. I could play a few pieces by heart mechanically without any real knowledge of rhythm or theory. I never had a good teacher until now.
I have found a fantastic teacher who has fueled my love of piano music into a passion for playing and learning. I love to practice and wish to have something decent to learn on and enjoy.
I am looking for a reasonably priced grand. I would consider an upright but it would not fit in the space which is a corner.
I just went to Jordan Kitts to look for an interim electronic piano until I can afford a better grand and realized I don't really care for the electronic sound though I guess I would get used to it? It just doesn't have the rich sound of an acoustic.
I played a few pianos there to begin my research. They have a 5'10" Sojin for 4900$ that I thought sounded and played well, but I know nothing of pianos, their action etc. I did search this forum for sojins and what I found of course is not good. I am paying my teacher to go look at this piano anyway in the hopes that it is one of the rare sojins of good quality, but after reading the forums it doesn't bode well.
So any suggestions for a good piano brand/model? I did like the idea of buying it from the piano store because they have an upgrade policy that sounded nice, but I did see a post that said be careful with those policies. I'm at the beginning of my research but am sick of my super old piano! Any advice you can give will be highly appreciated. Thanks in advance!!!

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#2507629 - 02/05/16 03:11 PM Re: Please help with new piano purchase [Re: BethRose]
Ivan M. Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/20/15
Posts: 126
Yamaha GC2 might serve. If it's out of your price range, I'd consider putting in a tall upright where your grand's keyboard now is across the corner. You may get a weird acoustic effect because of the confinement in the corner, but a grand in the corner can be problematic too.
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#2507654 - 02/05/16 04:38 PM Re: Please help with new piano purchase [Re: BethRose]
pianoloverus Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 21309
Loc: New York City
What is your price range?

Don't rush into buying a piano, especially one of the first few you see! One of the only ways to be able to decide if you like the tone and touch enough to buy is to play a lot of pianos, even ones above your price range. After doing that you could take your teacher see the 3-4 you like the best and help you with perhaps a more knowledgeable decision. This doesn't mean to necessarily buy whatever your teacher suggests, but at least get his/her input. If you find it difficult to judge the tone and touch, try to find some articles at PW or other places that discuss some of the most common things that knowledgeable look for in a piano's tone. Also, I'd suggest reading the Piano Buyer(free...see left column) about what to look for in a piano.


Edited by pianoloverus (02/05/16 04:46 PM)

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#2507665 - 02/05/16 05:24 PM Re: Please help with new piano purchase [Re: BethRose]
Retsacnal Online   content

Platinum Supporter until Feb 18  2015


Registered: 10/11/12
Posts: 1477
Loc: Northern Virgina
Have you talked to a technician about what it might cost to improve the performance of your Schiller? You can pay a shop $4900 for a 25 (or more) year old Sojin, but you can only find your grandmother's piano in one place. If it has any sentimental value to you at all, I think it might be a better option, and I wonder what a $4900 investment in your own piano would do. Anyway, just a thought.
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#2507674 - 02/05/16 05:51 PM Re: Please help with new piano purchase [Re: BethRose]
Rickster Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/25/06
Posts: 10351
Loc: Georgia, USA
You will find a few previous threads/opinions here on Piano World regarding the Sojin, both good and bad, but mostly bad. If I'm not mistaken, they were made in Korea by Daewoo Corporation(?).

And, I think the price for the Sojin is probably on the high side.

If it is any consolation to you, my first baby grand was a Late 1980's "Tokai" G-180 (5'10") made in Hamamatsu Japan (where they make the Yamahas and Kawais). It was an okay piano for my purposes, though a bit bright sounding. I did finally get a fairly decent tone out of it after stabbing the hammers with needles rather aggressively; but it soon brightened back up after a few months of hard playing. I paid $4250 from a private seller + 350 for moving. I enjoyed it for about 3 or 4 years and then sold it for $3K; and, it was in better shape when I sold it than when I bought it. The buyer, a classically trained pianist, was thrilled with it.

If you like the sound of the Sojin, and can negotiate some on the price, it might not be a bad piano. I've learned that a good piano tech can make even a "bad" piano sound good. And, the definition of a bad piano can vary widely.

And, yes, I have heard of the Schiller brand. In fact, I have a YT video of me playing an old 1909 Schiller upright that is approaching a million views! smile I figure when it reaches a million views, I plan to reward myself in some way (buy a new Chevy truck maybe smile ).

Good luck, and keep us informed of your decision.

Rick
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#2507862 - 02/06/16 09:28 AM Re: Please help with new piano purchase [Re: BethRose]
BethRose Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/05/16
Posts: 6
Thanks for the advice so far everyone! I'm going to start by looking at the piano guide since I know nothing. I've had another look at the room and if I rearrange things I can possibly fit an upright on another wall if it is 56" wide (which my grand is).
What do you all think of hybrid pianos? I had never heard of them before my visit to the piano store yesterday.

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#2507865 - 02/06/16 09:46 AM Re: Please help with new piano purchase [Re: BethRose]
JoBert Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/27/15
Posts: 204
Loc: Germany
If you mean the Yamaha hybrids N1, N2, N3 (with grand action) and NU1 (with upright action). They are essentially digital pianos but with "real" acoustic actions (either grand or upright) instead of one of the various custom designed actions that other DPs use.
You could say that they are like an acoustic that has a silent system, where the silent system is always active, so consequently the acoustic part, i.e. strings, frame, soundboard etc, have been permanently removed (of course only figuratively). Plus, in contrast to an acoustic with a silent system, there are speakers so that you can also play the digital sound without headphones.
As for what people think of them: if you head over to the digitals subforum and ask there, I'm sure you'll get lots of (different) opinions. smile


Edited by JoBert (02/06/16 09:47 AM)
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#2508038 - 02/06/16 07:12 PM Re: Please help with new piano purchase [Re: BethRose]
Ivan M. Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/20/15
Posts: 126
One curious thing I noticed when playing a Yamaha U1 "Transacoustic" was how the digital sound was emanating from where the dynamic cores contact the soundboard. Another was how the digital sound was out of synch with the acoustic. Not a bad instrument overall at all though.
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#2508169 - 02/07/16 10:20 AM Re: Please help with new piano purchase [Re: BethRose]
BethRose Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/05/16
Posts: 6
Oops! Sorry. Didn't know about the digital forum.

What about upright vs. grand? My budget has been upped a little and I could possibly afford a mason and hamlin upright; this would probably get me a nicer grand as well.

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#2508175 - 02/07/16 10:35 AM Re: Please help with new piano purchase [Re: BethRose]
pianoloverus Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 21309
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By BethRose
What about upright vs. grand? My budget has been upped a little and I could possibly afford a mason and hamlin upright; this would probably get me a nicer grand as well.
If I remember correctly, The Piano Buyer(free, see left column)has an excellent list of the positives and negatives of each choice.
Are you talking about a new Mason upright or a used one?


Edited by pianoloverus (02/07/16 10:36 AM)

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#2508213 - 02/07/16 12:48 PM Re: Please help with new piano purchase [Re: BethRose]
BethRose Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/05/16
Posts: 6
new

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#2508248 - 02/07/16 03:03 PM Re: Please help with new piano purchase [Re: BethRose]
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14984
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Quote:
What about upright vs. grand? My budget has been upped a little and I could possibly afford a mason and hamlin upright; this would probably get me a nicer grand as well.


Hugely.

Once you change your budget to buy on a house,condo, car or piano - you'll be looking at different things.

Sometimes VERY different!

Norbert smile
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#2509533 - 02/11/16 04:38 PM Re: Please help with new piano purchase [Re: BethRose]
BethRose Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/05/16
Posts: 6
I just came back from the piano store again and I have two pianos that I am considering. One is a new mason and hamlin upright and the other is a yamaha c2x. I LOVE the sound of the Mason and Hamlin but like the touch of the Yamaha a little bit better. I really like them both but could keep looking too as this is a huge purchase. They are offering "sale" pricing for the presidents's day weekend but I am wondering if you think they have flexibility beyond that. Sale on the c2x is 29990 and the MH50 is 20500.

What do you think?

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#2509540 - 02/11/16 05:00 PM Re: Please help with new piano purchase [Re: BethRose]
dhull100 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/02/14
Posts: 63
Loc: North Tx
If in doubt AND receiving pressure from salesperson, pause.

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#2509545 - 02/11/16 05:10 PM Re: Please help with new piano purchase [Re: BethRose]
BethRose Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/05/16
Posts: 6
I worked with a new person this time but I guess he will have to give the commission to the first person who helped me so there was really no pressure. I found him very helpful and patient.

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#2509585 - 02/11/16 07:24 PM Re: Please help with new piano purchase [Re: BethRose]
pianoloverus Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 21309
Loc: New York City
It's highly unlikely that any price offered on a "sale weekend" wouldn't be matched shortly thereafter. You can get a rough idea of how good or bad a price is by reading the Piano Buyer. Start with the SMP(not the MSRP) and then subtract 10%-30%. There are many other factors that could affect the price offered by the dealer but that calculation gives a starting idea. You should read the discussion of pricing in the PB that appears, I think, right before the price lists.

For example, the SMP for the Mason upright is $26,837 a "reasonable" cost would be between 70% and 90% of that figure.

You could discuss what you like/dislike about each piano with the salesman. It may be possible to change the touch of the Mason more to your liking or change the tone of the Yamaha more to your liking. This should always be done before you agree to buy.

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