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#473 - 10/16/08 10:41 AM Building a Piano Room
JeffBC Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/04/07
Posts: 120
Loc: Haverhill, MA
I want to remodel an 11'3"x13'x8' room into a piano room. As was already discussed in another thread, I'll probably be putting a slightly larger than ideal piano into this room.

Currently the room has 1/2" thick wooden plank walls, a wooden parquet floor, and a sheetrock ceiling. There is a basement under the room. There is a roof (no attic) over the room. One corner of the room has a 6' two pane fixed/casement windows along each wall (ie: there are two windows (four panes) total next to each other in the corner of the room). The heat/ac air vent is below the window.

I can tear the room down to its framing if need be, and start over. Just looking for thoughts/opinions/suggestions...
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#474 - 10/16/08 06:06 PM Re: Building a Piano Room
Gyro Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/24/05
Posts: 4533
Conservatories have practice rooms, but
I think for an amateur this is questionable.
Piano is all about people, that is,
it's never about just the player and
his instrument, it's the player, his
piano, and something else, and that
"something else" is typically another
person, whether a family member, a neighbor,
etc. By constructing a piano room,
this shuts you off from the "something
else" aspect of playing, and just leaves
you and the instrument, which is not
going to work after a time, in my
experience. In a conservatory, it doesn't
matter, because the player is in contact
with piano-related people all day,
but a typical amateur doesn't
have this kind of contact, and so he
risks isolating himself too much
in a practice room.

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#475 - 10/16/08 08:38 PM Re: Building a Piano Room
MarkL Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/26/07
Posts: 728
Loc: Chicago Suburban
Add some heavy window treatments to reduce the brightness of the sound, also help insulate the windows. Try to improve temperature stability by adding insulation. If the exterior walls need more, maybe have it foamed in so you don't have to remove any wood planking. Same with roof cavities. You might put a small air conditioner in the wall even though you have central A/C, you can afford to run that all the time and keep the temp and humidity stable without cooling the whole house. If you don't have central humidifier I'd add one, or plan to get a room sized one. Keep the piano away from heat vent or use a diffuser.
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#476 - 10/17/08 07:58 AM Re: Building a Piano Room
Rich Galassini Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/28/01
Posts: 9247
Loc: Philadelphia/South Jersey
Markl has some good thoughts.

A damppchaser system will do a tremendous job of regulating humidity, but regulating the space is always best. If you plan on closing the room off from the rest of the house (this was not mentioned) then this would be a relitively easy thing to do.

As far as other plans, most of a room setup is aesthetic taste. Is it live enough? Is there too much reverberation?

Placement of a grand piano in a room this size is more about your taste as well. However you place the piano, the tone will fill the room, so you are free to think about placement from a design standpoint. I should add that how direct sunlight enters the room and exactly where the vent is placed will have bearing. The piano should not be directly exposed to either.

I hope that helps. Keep us posted on your project. \:\)
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Cunningham Piano Co.
Phila, Pa.
Dir. Line (215) 991-0834
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#477 - 10/17/08 09:46 AM Re: Building a Piano Room
SophieM Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/12/08
Posts: 353
Loc: New York City
If you're tearing your walls down to the frames anyway, you may wish to consider installing acoustic panesl as part of your walls or on your ceiling.

One famous music school in NYC has these panels installed in its practice rooms and the pianos never feel overpowering in the tiny rooms (even when you play duets). Another not-so-famous music shool has no acoustic panels in its practice rooms and it can be almost painful to play in the smaller practice rooms, even with the lid down.

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#478 - 10/17/08 10:49 AM Re: Building a Piano Room
Horowitzian Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/08
Posts: 8453
 Quote:
Originally posted by SophieM:
If you're tearing your walls down to the frames anyway, you may wish to consider installing acoustic panesl as part of your walls or on your ceiling.

One famous music school in NYC has these panels installed in its practice rooms and the pianos never feel overpowering in the tiny rooms (even when you play duets). Another not-so-famous music shool has no acoustic panels in its practice rooms and it can be almost painful to play in the smaller practice rooms, even with the lid down. [/b]
Excellent idea.
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Close only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades, and nuclear weapons.

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