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#293717 - 09/07/07 04:10 PM Buying a new piano for my 8 year old
dmconcep Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/07/07
Posts: 3
Loc: Los Angeles
Hi I am new to this forum.
I need some good advice, please.

My 8 year old daughter has shown an interest in playing the piano at friends etc. We are now wanting to buy a new piano for her to learn on, at home.
I live in Los Angeles and have visited a few retail stores recently.

Obviously a baby grand or grand piano is out!
Looking at uprights I feel that I want to buy something that is somewhat decent quality, not a real cheap piano, something that she can enjoy playing as she progresses. Something that will cost in the low to mid $3000.00 range.

New pianos have 10 or 12 year warranties (parts and labour) and this is a big advantage over older, used models.

Which is a better quality piano between these imported brands that I have been shown, with regards to build quality and sound quality, and which will last better while still sounding good?

a) Pearl River UP118 series 47" height
b) George Steck 47" upright
c) Cable Nelson (by Yamaha) CN216 45" upright

Awaiting 'sound advice' from anybody in the know. Please give me specific details on what features I should be aware of when comparing different models. Any other recommendations?

Thank you,
dmconcep

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#293718 - 09/07/07 06:11 PM Re: Buying a new piano for my 8 year old
menancy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/05/06
Posts: 51
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
I was in exactly the same scenario a couple of years back. I budget 3K to 4K, but ended up w/ a 7K grand ('82 Kawaii GS-30). Daughter ended up quiting two years later, fortunately I found myself wanting to learn how to play too & now love it with a passion.

Best advise I can give regarding $ spent, there is a huge difference in sound & quality going from 3K to 7k+. Your better off (sound wise) purchasing a high quality used piano in your price range.

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#293719 - 09/07/07 09:22 PM Re: Buying a new piano for my 8 year old
Craigen Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/01/05
Posts: 1815
Loc: West Coast
My vote for the new Cable Nelson CN116. I heard these were being discontinued in favor of the new Yamaha model T118 at more money. Anyone verify this?
_________________________
Piano Technician, member Piano Technicians Guild.

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#293720 - 09/07/07 09:49 PM Re: Buying a new piano for my 8 year old
vaishali00 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/29/07
Posts: 8
Loc: California
We were in the same boat just a week ago, and ended up buying a new Perzina. That piano is in the mid-3000 range and we love it. It's supposed to be custom built in China out of european parts. I think it's a good deal.

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#293721 - 09/07/07 10:05 PM Re: Buying a new piano for my 8 year old
turandot Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/27/07
Posts: 7089
Loc: torrance, CA
You live in a market where you can find all of these pianos (and more). I won't mention others because you want opinions of these.

I would favor (a) and (c) over (b). I think there might be more price flexibility (discount) on (a) than (c), but (c) might have more resale value later.

I wouldn't suggest looking at used pianos unless you found all of the new pianos available at this price point to be unacceptable to you.
_________________________
Will Johnny Come Marching Home?
The fate of the modern wartime soldier

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#293722 - 09/07/07 10:45 PM Re: Buying a new piano for my 8 year old
john.G Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/19/07
Posts: 45
Loc: Australia
Of the three listed (none of which I'm familiar with) I'd go with the "by yamaha". It might be the easiest to sell later.
Personally I tend to reccomend digitals in this sort of situation. This is why:

Most kids that start playing stop inside three years.

A very good digital costs less than what you are budgeting and is as good or better in terms of touch.

Tonally it will be better. And the option to play with other sounds/effects can help your daughter retain interest.

Takes up less space in the house, and can be shifted from room to room.

Won't need tuning - spend the money on more lessons.

Will have a volume switch. Also headphones, however I think that if she's prepared to play it you should be prepared to listen. If you don't show any interest in her progress she won't either.

Use the promise of a "real" piano after two years as an incentive.

The downside with digitals are:
No resale value when you trade up or she quits. (offset by the fact that you'd loose money trading an acoustic anyway this isn't really a reason)

Some music teachers won't teach her unless she has a "real" piano. Most will provided it's a good one and you specify that it's only until she decides that she wants to continue with it.

whatever you do - good luck
John

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#293723 - 09/07/07 10:56 PM Re: Buying a new piano for my 8 year old
Utrumpet Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/12/05
Posts: 154
Loc: Utah
The Pearl River 118 is a great sounding and playing piano for the 3-4K price range. It gets my vote.
_________________________
Piano consultant.
Riverton Music
Salt Lake City, UT
(801)255-8300

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#293724 - 09/07/07 10:58 PM Re: Buying a new piano for my 8 year old
Utrumpet Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/12/05
Posts: 154
Loc: Utah
John, which digitals in this price range have a better touch than the acoustic pianos mentioned? I haven't seen one in this price range...
_________________________
Piano consultant.
Riverton Music
Salt Lake City, UT
(801)255-8300

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#293725 - 09/07/07 11:08 PM Re: Buying a new piano for my 8 year old
Pianomadam Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/18/07
Posts: 416
Loc: Southern United States
I have not played the George Steck nor the Cable Nelson. I have played one Pearl River and was impressed by it (especially the touch). On a side note, Steinway & Sons chose Pearl River (and Young Chang) to build their Essex line of pianos.
_________________________
PianoMadam

Family of Steinway-Designed Pianos (Steinway & Sons, Boston, Essex) Dealer

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#293726 - 09/08/07 11:29 PM Re: Buying a new piano for my 8 year old
john.G Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/19/07
Posts: 45
Loc: Australia
 Quote:
John, which digitals in this price range have a better touch than the acoustic pianos mentioned? I haven't seen one in this price range...
Mid $3k is about $4k AUD. This puts you into some serious digital hardware, from the likes of roland, yamaha & kawai.

I'd have no problem reccomending the Kawai CA 51 to anyone as a very good substitute for an acoustics touch in this price range, given that
not many acoustics at this price have been regulated to perfection, there's not enough margin in them for that.

Please note that I am reccomending this to a student with no experience at all to play early repertoire. Not to someone who is trying to get a range of timbres and dynamics from the beast while
sitting a diploma. (I wouldn't reccomend any of the listed pianos to someone sitting a diploma or better either.)

john

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#293727 - 09/10/07 02:24 AM Re: Buying a new piano for my 8 year old
John Pels Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/31/07
Posts: 1253
Loc: Tomball, Texas
John G, the only problem with your reasoning, is that I have found that kids DO NOT take digitals seriously. For this reason, I WILL NOT teach kiddos on digitals. The drop out rate is way beyond what my experience has been with acoustics. If parents have doubts, I recommend renting which can be applied to a purchase, or just buying a used upright for under $1k. There are many older verticals that are perfectly serviceable for beginners.

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#293728 - 09/10/07 03:28 AM Re: Buying a new piano for my 8 year old
SCCDoug Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 663
Loc: Canada
Digitals definitely have a role to play (we have a Yamaha P140 and a trusty old Korg DS-8), but our children always prefered our acoustics for practicing, so I would also add my vote in favour of an acoustic. We started them on a good quality used upright and when the time was right added a new grand. The pianos you are looking at would be decent starting instruments that would be servicable for many years, so I would recommend to select the one whose tone and touch appeals most to you, if new is the direction you would like to go.
_________________________
Doug

"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." - Dr. Seuss

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