Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

SEARCH
the Forums & Piano World

This custom search works much better than the built in one and allows searching older posts.
(ad) End Stage Fright
End Stage Fright
(ad) Pianoteq
Latest Pianoteq add-on instrument: U4 upright piano
(ad) Pearl River
Pearl River Pianos
(ad) P B Guide
Acoustic & Digital Piano Guide
PianoSupplies.com (150)
Piano Accessories Music Related Gifts Piano Tuning Equipment Piano Moving Equipment
We now offer Gift Certificates in our online store!
(ad) Estonia Piano
Estonia Piano
Quick Links to Useful Stuff
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

*Piano Dealers - Piano Stores
*Piano Tuners
*Piano Teachers
*Piano Movers
*Piano Restorations
*Piano Manufacturers
*Organs

Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano Accessories
* Buying a Piano
*Buying A Acoustic Piano
*Buying a Digital Piano
*Pianos for Sale
*Sell Your Piano
*How Old is My Piano?
*Piano Books
*Piano Art, Pictures, & Posters
*Directory/Site Map
*Contest
*Links
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Screen Saver
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords
Topic Options
#320124 - 02/22/06 01:22 PM Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
jennifer_101 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/22/06
Posts: 11
Hi,
I've been reading all the great forums on your site. I'm hoping to buy a baby grand piano at a reasonable price. A couple dealers I went to were selling Hoffman and Kuhne (apparently Chinese now, used to be German), Steigerman (Chinese) and Pearl River. I'm hoping this piano will last for a while as I am in love with piano playing. I am a bit worried that these pianos will not last. Also, I live in a dry, cold climate (Edmonton, Alberta) - I'm sure if this would be a consideration for buying a piano. All of piano dealers say these are great buys but it almost too good to be true. What would you recommend I do? I really would like to keep to a budget of $ 8000.

Top
(ads 568) Hailun Pianos

piano accessories music gifts tuning and moving equipment
#320125 - 02/22/06 01:39 PM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
Norbert Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 13961
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
1] Play the pianos and compare them by sound and touch - you will notice vast differences,

2] Check upon the authenticity of the *story* - if a German brand name is used, it does not mean there is indeed a legitimate or actual German connection - especially if there is the specific claim.....

3] Do a search here on the brands and see if and what reports you can get: customer reports are often better than all the advertising in the world!

4] Don't let price influence you too much in this line up: chances are the cheapest one *is*[/b] the *cheapest* here indeed.... \:o

Wishing you well in your choice!

Norbert \:\)
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

Top
#320126 - 02/22/06 03:04 PM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
FogVilleLad Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/02/05
Posts: 4680
Loc: San Francisco
Norbert wrote,
 Quote:
Play the pianos and compare them by sound and touch - you will notice vast differences
That's *it*, in a nutshell. Just take your time, make notes about what you like and don't like about each piano that you audition, and try to regard your search as an adventure which will lead you to discovering the piano that's right for you.

Room acoustics can make a big difference. Carpeted rooms with low ceilings can make a piano seem less powerful. Lively rooms can add power and richness, as the sound reverberates. You may want to consider making notes about the room in which you auditioned each piano.

The right piano for you is the one that will sing to you in your dreams, when you imagine yourself playing the music that you want to play, when that piano is set up in the space where you will be playing it.

There are only two ears that matter, and both of them are yours. Trust your ears, take the time to let them experience as many instruments as you can, and you'll find "the one."

Re the weather, the real problem for pianos is large swings in humidity. That's why humidity control devices, such as Dampp Chaser are so popular.

Oh, not to worry too much about little problems with touch. They almost certainly can be cured by your tech's reducing friction and performing action adjustments.

Please keep us updated.

Top
#320127 - 02/22/06 06:46 PM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
Norbert Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 13961
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Good post, FogVilleLad, but one caveat:

 Quote:
Oh, not to worry too much about little problems with touch. They almost certainly can be cured by your tech's reducing friction and performing action adjustments.
Little careful here.

If the piano happens to have some of those notoriously soft, almost squishy knuckles I have seen in the action of at least one of the above mentioned brands before - all the *adjustments* won't help, especially in the long run.

The touch will never be overly precise.

Make sure you like the touch - at least the way it is now.

In case this should matter at all......

Norbert
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

Top
#320128 - 02/22/06 08:47 PM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
FogVilleLad Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/02/05
Posts: 4680
Loc: San Francisco
Norbert,

No real disagrement---in part because I always recommend a pre-purchase inspection by the buyer's own tech.

Top
#320129 - 02/22/06 10:40 PM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
Norbert Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 13961
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Good point, Fog:

- hopefully the tech will include the quality of the knuckles in the action: much will *ride* on that in later playing......

Norbert ;\)
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

Top
#320130 - 02/23/06 01:08 AM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
bassoprofundo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/07/05
Posts: 231
jennifer, for what it is worth I am very happy with my Steigerman 5'6" .........now approx one and a half years later.

So happy in fact that my wife is buying one for the senior's facility she manages.

Good luck. \:\)

Top
#320131 - 02/23/06 12:38 PM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
jennifer_101 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/22/06
Posts: 11
Thanks for all of the advise. I did searches on the forum yesterday and it seemed like there was a negative review for Pearl River pianos. On the other hand, there seemed to be some kudos for Steigerman. I tried playing one a year ago (yes, I've been trying to decide on piano since last year - I just don't want to make a mistake!), and I liked the sound of it. I guess I'm a bit unwilling to trust my own ears as I am a bit out of practice.

My real concern is that the Steigerman will have more repair issues than say, the old standard, the Yamaha. I really did not like the sound of the Yamaha, though. Despite the sales pitch, I just wasn't sold on Yamaha's sound.

What are your thoughts on the long-term quality of the Steigerman?

bassoprofundo - has the sound of your Steigerman changed since you bought it? Has there been any repair issues?

Top
#320132 - 02/23/06 02:08 PM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
Frank Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/15/01
Posts: 379
Loc: Vancouver, B.C.
Jennifer-101,
Previuos posts were correct about H.& Kuhne, strickly an old german name being used.
Steigerman Pianos are a privately held name and have been built by variuos builders over the years from Samick and Young Chang to today, from China.
Most are by Beijing Xinghai but also Seijung and Dongbei.
You have to be carefull on which builder you get as there are differences.
They all fall in your budjet and will work but will require excellent dealer prep.
Pre-owned Yamahas in your climate can have a rough time if it is one of the "Imported Grey Market" Not always, but sometimes.Get a private PTG tech to check.
You should also try some of the Korean/Indonesion pianos such as Conover Cable or Hazelton as they are also in your price range and names are owned and backed by Samick.
There is probably a dealer in your area.
Shop carefully, and see lots of pianos.

Good Luck,

Frank Woodside
www.hzmpiano.com
_________________________
Frank Woodside
www.hzmpiano.com

Top
#320133 - 02/23/06 02:13 PM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
FogVilleLad Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/02/05
Posts: 4680
Loc: San Francisco
jennifer_101,

This is from a *1997* post on the Piano Technicians Guild archives: Steigerman is a private stencil owned by R.R. Loewen Distributors of Canada and since the early 1960s has appeared alternately on Yamaha and Samick pianos imported into the Canadian market.

Since losing Canadian distribution rights to Samick 2 years ago, R.R.L.D. has imported pianos from Chinese manufacturers (Dong Bei, Beijing, Yantei) with the Steigerman stencil and expanded distribution into the U.S.A.

Best regards,

Stan Kroeker
Registered Piano Technician
***********

So these instruments do have some history, but if the above post is correct re their manufacture having been switched to one of the Chinese factories, that history is too short to assess longevity.

That wouldn't stop me from buying one, if its tone were appealing. Trust your ears. If you find yourself humming something and realize that you're thinking of a certain piano, that's the one for you. If you're not ready to trust, then just play/listen to as many pianos as you can. Pretty soon you'll find that you do have preferences.

Auditioning pianos can be great fun. Based on a suggestion from whippen boy, Monica Kern developed a journal in which she would write down her impressions---and the serial numbers of the instruments she played.

So for example, many people like an instrument with a "homogenous scale"---one which is evenly balanced across the whole tonal spectrum. I tend to like a little more authority in the bass, so if I were choosing between a Petrof and an Estonia, I'd probably pick the Petrof. What do *you* prefer? Some people like'em loud, others prefer an instrument that doesn't raise the hair on their neck every time that they sit down to play. Which appeals to you? Do you like them light and sparkling, dark and mellow? Only one way to find out;-)

Dealers like to have people in their showrooms, particularly mid-week, when there's not much going on. That's also the best time for auditioning.

There's a communality of components among stencils, based largely on selling price, so the quality of the Steigerman's components should be the same as others in its price range. (Is "stencil" a familiar term? It just means that the same factory produces instruments that are mechanically identical or at least very similar, but have different decals on the fallboard.)

What most often differentiates stencils is *preparation*---factory prep and dealer prep. For example, Ritmuller is Pearl River's upscale brand. I don't know the situation now, but when Ritmullers were introduced I read that the true difference was that a factory tech would go thru them---and expecially their actions---so that they arrived at the dealers in better shape! Otherwise they were just Pearls with a better finish and a different decal.

Prep is labor. Labor has a cost. Expect to pay a little more for a piano that's properly prepped. I say "little," because Chinese factory workers make peanut wages, so factory prep doesn't really cost anything. Dealer prep does cost. And frankly, that's a key factor is getting the best performance out of any piano.

In general, the quality of Asian pianos is rising, with the Chinese-made instruments rising quickly. So almost any new or two-to-three-year-old instrument should be safe to buy----after being cleared by your tech, of course.

Your asking for info re history and current issues is absolutely the right thing to do, but I'm thinking that you are not actually ready to buy. The reason is that you are not saying what it is about a particular instrument that *you* find appealing. Please trust me on this one: you really do want to have a bit of a crush on the instrument that you bring home.

Please continue listening and posting.

As you see, we love giving free advice;-)

Top
#320134 - 02/23/06 02:14 PM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
Norbert Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 13961
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
 Quote:
Most are by Beijing Xinghai but also Seijung and Dongbei.
Not any more.

They're all Beijing for over a year now.

I can totally assure you that we had next to no problems with these pianos.

You may also check 'Heintzman' pianos, our friendly competitior. ;\)

Frank can let you know who happens to represent them in your area.

Always try as many pianos as possible and....

.... do[/b] start to learn to trust your own ears!

Good luck!

Norbert \:\)
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

Top
#320135 - 02/23/06 04:38 PM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
jennifer_101 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/22/06
Posts: 11
FogVilleLad - In response to your question about bass. I grew up playing on an Nordheimer upright, which had a huge bass. When you hit those bass notes...WOW. Now, perhaps, this would make a professional pianist wince. I suppose a more balanced approach on a piano would be better???:)However, this is the sound I enjoy. This is probably why I'm not so keen on so many pianos I have played in the showroom.
Is there a piano you could suggest that it is in my price range that has a larger bass sound? I would prefer to have a grand-style piano to an upright but with my budget I may have to choose upright!

Top
#320136 - 02/23/06 04:21 PM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
Frank Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/15/01
Posts: 379
Loc: Vancouver, B.C.
Norbert,
Thank you for asking Jennifer to check out Heintzman.
I respected her stated budget of around $ 8000.00 Canadian and with the differences ( although still built in China) of Imported Renner Hammers, Mapes USA Bass Strings and of course the soundboards in the grands made in Canada of Solid white Eastern Spruce by Bolduc in Quebec we are in a different price and performance level. You mentioned to me that they were quite nice at NAMM when you played them.
After checking the Ancott Directory around her stated budget she will be limited to the Conover Cable or Smaller Ritmullers ( Pearl River)Steigerman ( Beijing Xinghai) , or such pianos that use laminated, not solid soundboards and mostly domestic materials.
All above pianos represent an excellent value for the money when set-up ( as I hear you do) properly.
We also had the some of the same issues before we made all the changes.
I agree wholeheartly that she should try lots of pianos and let her " Ears do the walking"
Good luck and lots of enjoyment in your search Jennifer.

Frank Woodside
www.hzmpiano.com
_________________________
Frank Woodside
www.hzmpiano.com

Top
#320137 - 02/23/06 04:49 PM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
FogVilleLad Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/02/05
Posts: 4680
Loc: San Francisco
jennifer_101,

Petrof is the place to start. Listening to them will give you an opportunity to learn if this is still what you prefer. Here's a link: http://www.melodylanepiano.com/

If you can go over there, please consider allowing enough time to also visit other showrooms.

Top
#320138 - 02/23/06 05:21 PM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
Norbert Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 13961
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
 Quote:
You mentioned to me that they were quite nice at NAMM when you played them.
Frank: I commented specifically on the newly introduced 7' grand that was shown there: it was very nice, indeed!

 Quote:
I respected her stated budget of around $ 8000.00 Canadian and with the differences ( although still built in China) of Imported Renner Hammers, Mapes USA Bass Strings and of course the soundboards in the grands made in Canada of Solid white Eastern Spruce by Bolduc in Quebec we are in a different price and performance level.
Would this relate to each and every Heintzman grand possibly sitting on some dealers floor right now - regardless of size?

Perhaps the local dealer where Jennifer lives would still have some of the [earlier] Heintzman models without these recently added specs, but perhaps more fitting her budget?

Go Jennifer, go.....


Norbert \:\)
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

Top
#320139 - 02/23/06 08:39 PM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
bassoprofundo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/07/05
Posts: 231
 Quote:
Originally posted by jennifer_101:
bassoprofundo - has the sound of your Steigerman changed since you bought it? Has there been any repair issues? [/b]
Hi Jennifer,

The piano has played in as it were........after buying we moved to a another house with hardwood floors through out and the living room configuration is different so had to do some voicing because it overpowered the room. Otherwise it continues to perform with the warmth and power that convinced us to buy it. It is definitly a lot of piano at this price point.........still get lots of compliments on sound, finish and construction....including my tech who was regular tuner for the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra and the CBC as well as tuner for my piano professor in university. He is very impressed.



Top
#320140 - 02/24/06 01:36 AM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
Frank Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/15/01
Posts: 379
Loc: Vancouver, B.C.
Norbert,
Glad you liked the redone 7' as you called it( actually 6'8" ) with the new Board.
Yes, Those changes are on all our grands and have been for some time.
Unfortunately, the Edmonton dealer does not have any of the " Earlier" models at less price and has sold out of the new ones and on a waiting list like most stores.
I doubt very much there are many, if any left of the old ones in Canada or the U.S. on dealer floors.
Wish we could build them faster.
Jennifer,
I agree with Fogville, you may want to run down to Calgary and check the Petrofs at Melody Lane.
More pianos tried, a more educated decision.
Again, good shopping and make some fun out of it.

Frank Woodside
www.hzmpiano.com
_________________________
Frank Woodside
www.hzmpiano.com

Top
#320141 - 02/24/06 01:56 AM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
Norbert Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 13961
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Petrof, of course, is handled right in Edmonton by Don's warehouse as well.....

Norbert ;\)
_________________________
www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642

Top
#320142 - 02/24/06 10:18 AM Re: Hoffman and Kuhne/Pearl River/Steigerman- piano buying
bassoprofundo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/07/05
Posts: 231
Jennifer,

Don in Edmonton carries Steigerman as well........I like the sound of Petrof, just worried about your budget. Bang for buck, have a second look at a properly prepped Steigerman....trust your ears .....based on your budget.
I am keeping my comments to one of the three you asked about in title of your thread.

Good luck \:\)

Top

Moderator:  Ken Knapp, Piano World, Rickster 
What's Hot!!
HOW TO POST PICTURES on the Piano Forums
-------------------
Sharing is Caring!
About the Buttons
-------------------
Forums Rules & Help
-------------------
ADVERTISE
on Piano World

The world's most popular piano web site.
-------------------
PIANO BOOKS
Interesting books about the piano, pianists, piano history, biographies, memoirs and more!
(125ad) Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
Sheet Music
(PW is an affiliate)
Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale
Download & Print Sheet Music Instantly
sheet music search
sheet music search

sheet music search
(ad) HAILUN Pianos
Hailun Pianos - Click for More
(ad) Lindeblad Piano
Lindeblad Piano Restoration
Who's Online
137 registered (Almaviva, antony, angga888, anotherscott, 40 invisible), 1377 Guests and 50 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
74198 Members
42 Forums
153490 Topics
2249175 Posts

Max Online: 15252 @ 03/21/10 11:39 PM
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Premier Piano of New York
by FenderJazzMan
Yesterday at 11:58 PM
Top selling self-taught pianists?
by Sand Tiger
Yesterday at 11:06 PM
Just got my MP11!
by Dan Clark
Yesterday at 10:18 PM
Cracks in my soundboard??
by Markarian
Yesterday at 09:35 PM
OT Heartbleed
by doremi
Yesterday at 08:46 PM
(ads by Google)

Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World | Donate | Link to Us | Classifieds |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter | Press Room |


copyright 1997 - 2014 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission