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#655992 - 07/25/07 10:25 AM pedal solenoid for QRS
gailruth Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 07/25/07
Posts: 7
Loc: Virginia
I am looking for input regarding upgrading my QRS petine player system with a pedal solenoid to sustain the dampening. I understand that with this system the pedal is depressed when signaled. The technician who installed the pianomation system on my 1987 Young Chang 5'2'' piano advises AGAINST the pedal solenoid stating that there is a good chance there will be noise with each depression of the pedal. I have had my system for exactly 4 days and my initial reaction to the dampening system (or lack of) is that it is an inferior sound to what I am accustomed to. I may get used to the sound over time, but would appreciate opinions about the advisability of the solenoid option.
Thank You!

#655993 - 07/31/07 02:45 PM Re: pedal solenoid for QRS
Tom Tuner Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/08/06
Posts: 246
Loc: Bainbridge, OH
If it is YOUR piano and YOU are paying for the installation you should insist that the technician complete the job. If you don't like the result you can turn it off or have it disconected.
Because this function requires a lot more force than just playing notes it has always been difficult for manufacturers of player systems to get it to work without some incidental noise.

Yom Tuner

#655994 - 01/12/08 03:08 AM Re: pedal solenoid for QRS
Dr L Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/06/08
Posts: 1
Loc: Naples, FL
I'm curious. Did you ever have the pedal solenoid installed? I too feel the sound is compromised without the pedaling and sustain, and my local dealer says "I've installed over 700 systems and I've only been asked to install the pedal solenoid three times. Nobody wants it, they say it's too loud." Well, I think Disklavier sounds way better, but it's not a retrofit system, so that doesn't help me. He's a Steinway dealer, so I'm surprised that his "refined" customer base doesn't object to his system's lack of character in playback. Isn't that the whole reason to have a player....to have it sound as realistic as possible. (Besides, if a real breathing human were playing in your living room, you'd likely hear the pedalwork thumping a bit anyways, wouldn't you?). Just my .02$ (on my first post).

#655995 - 01/13/08 10:45 PM Re: pedal solenoid for QRS
CTPianotech Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/06/06
Posts: 1473
Loc: CT
QRS's "Magic Pedal" mode simply holds down the notes being played, instead of lifting all the dampers.

Loosing the effect of the other strings sympathetic vibrations is bad enough. It gets worse than that though.

Some passages of music require that the pedal be held down while the same notes are played 2 or more times. In such cases, "magic pedal" causes music that should have a legato sound to it, to sound choppy, and disconnected.

I agree that if the installer doesn't understand how to properly install the pedal solenoid, that "magic pedal" is an improvement. Still, 700 installations is a lot of chances to figure it out!

QRS has been including a pedal solenoid and required trapwork, for each of it's installation kits for over a year now. You're paying for the equipment whether you request it or not, you may as well make use of it! (though if they charge extra for the several hours of labor it can take to install and adjust it correctly--that is reasonable)

If you have additional questions about the the QRS system--they have their own forum here: http://qrs.forumexperts.com/
Rich Lindahl
Piano Restorations in Central CT
D-C installations, Player-Piano installations/service

#1184514 - 04/21/09 10:53 AM Re: pedal solenoid for QRS [Re: CTPianotech]
dr.dai phan Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/24/09
Posts: 100
Hello all,

I just got my QRS installed on my grand and the pedal solenoid really bothers me as it makes a thumping sound each time the pedal is depressed. It was loud enough for a visitor (non pianist) to comment. Tommorrow the tech will come over and hopefully he can solve the problem. I am not asking for complete silence but the sound should not be loud enough to turn heads. Regarding the QRS "magic pedal" feature, it is simply not an acceptable alternative in my view. Sure it may be OK in a noisy hotel lobby where nobody listens but at home, it is not a practical replacement. DP

Edited by dr.dai phan (04/21/09 10:54 AM)

#1185128 - 04/22/09 09:53 AM Re: pedal solenoid for QRS [Re: dr.dai phan]
athomik Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/04/07
Posts: 299
Loc: England
I'm not familiar with the QRS pedal soleoid system, but I can see 2 possible causes of excessive noise:
1) Poor adjustment of the solenoid (make sure the technician gets the acoustic pedaling adjusted properly before doing anything to the solenoid)
2) The QRS system may not use continous pedaling (as on the Disklaviers) but just has an ON/OFF function. This would be similar to you playing the piano and stomping the sustain pedal all the way down every time you use it.
Adrian Thomas
Adrian Thomas Music Services
Service Engineer - Hybrid Pianos & Strings

#1188389 - 04/27/09 02:07 PM Re: pedal solenoid for QRS [Re: athomik]
daydreamer8927 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/20/09
Posts: 10
Loc: LA
humm interesting

#1205693 - 05/25/09 07:01 PM Re: pedal solenoid for QRS [Re: daydreamer8927]
MikeBing Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/12/08
Posts: 1
Loc: New Jersey
QRS and PianoDisc pedal solenoids are on/off machines. On the release, the power is essentially turned off and the weight of the dampers and tray are returned to rest using gravity, and in some cases using an assist spring.

You can recreate this effect by quickly lifting your foot off of the pedal without controlling the dampers return like a skilled pianist would. You will hear a thump!!

The way to minimize this is to regulate the travel of the solenoid so that the tri-chord damper felts in the low tenor just clear the strings. The higher the lift on the dampers, the more thump you will hear. If there is an assist spring, eliminate it.

The Yamaha Disklavier on the other hand has a controlled return on the pedal solenoid, thus half-pedaling is available.


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