Hailun, anyone?

Posted by: turandot

Hailun, anyone? - 02/18/07 03:45 AM

Does anyone have any firsthand experience with this company or its products? I am still trying to turn over every stone before committing to buying a low-budget piano. I remember reading somewhere last year that were coming to the L.A. area (where I live) but it seems they decided on Atlanta for their US home office. I checked their website http://www.hailunusa.com/main.shtml
and learned by sending an E-mail that they will have a dealer (not named) in the L.A. area in a couple of weeks with several models in stock. Is that dealer anyone in the forum?

Something that caught my eye in their photos of their product line was that the company name was actually on the fallboard. A Hailun piano from the Hailun Piano Company. Now that's refreshing.
Posted by: Wzkit

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/18/07 05:20 AM

Hailun is essentially the same piano as Wendl & Lung. They have received pretty good reviews in these forums, and from my own experience, I would agree that the positive reviews are well deserved.

I would describe the basic tone character of the grands and uprights I tried as "bright" and clear, with an emphasis on the fundamental. The bass is also strong and "growly", especially on the grands. While bright, there is, to me, a clear attempt to imitate a more singing "European" tone, with longer sustain, as opposed to the brightness one tends to associate with Yamahas. That said, its not quite up on par with the better German makes. For example, the treble, while sparkling and clear, lacks the richness one would hear in an Ibach, or for that matter, a Sauter.

The one big unknown here is longevity, given that these pianos have not been in out in the market long enough. But for the price, I think the risk one is taking should be fairly minimal
Posted by: schwammerl

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/18/07 07:13 AM

Hi turandot

I cannot really speak for Hailun but I own a Wendl & Lung grand 161: http://www.wendl-lung.com/
W&L's are manufactured in the Hailun factory (China) but W&L claims differences in hammer choice, voicing, cabinet details (e.g. you can see the casters are not alike) and Q.C.. The product line (sizes) do not overlap completely either and all W&L pass through W&L-Vienna for final check-up and regulation before being shipped to dealers in Europe mainly (although I am also aware of a dealer in the States: http://www.pianofortechicago.com/. Whether these differences really also pay off in terms of noticable quality differences I do not know because Hailun is not available in Europe (so could not do a straight comparison betwen W&L and Hailun).

I am hower always suspicious when I read comments like "they are essentially the same as" or "they are basically the same as"...A Kemble KC 173 is indeed basically a Yamaha C1; a Kawai GE-30 basically a Kawai Rx-1 or a Yamaha GC1 is basically a Yamaha C1. Price aside I can however not imagine that many (if any) would prefer a C1 over a KC 173, a GE-30 over a Rx-1 .....

Another piano hat is made by Hailun is the Steigerman Premium Line: http://www.steigerman.com/home.htm. Also here there are constructional differences with the "basic" Hailuns. If you are lucky Norbert jumps on this thread, he will certainly explain what those differences make out.

I can mostly agree with Wzkit on the discription of the sound which also applies for W&L. I hope there is indeed a bit more richness in the treble sound of a Sauter or Ibach grand for triple to quadruple the price of a W&L. I did however prefer the W&L 161 over a Yamaha or Kawai grand which cost 50 to 100% more.

schwammerl.
Posted by: Wzkit

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/18/07 07:52 AM

Schwammerl,
I played both the Hailun and Wendl & Lung side by side in the same showroom, and to the best of my ability, I could discern no noticeable difference in performance between the two. Apart from the name on the fallboard, both pianos were basically identical in touch and tone. Neither were the price differences significant.
As for the description of the sound, that is my own subjective opinion and perception. In any case, a "thinner" treble does not in any way negate the positive impression I have of this piano. Like I said, its performance must be put in perspective against its price. If one can afford and is willing to pay extra for the German piano, then that is his personal choice. Whether one is willing to pay 3 or 4 times more for the German piano is matter of personal preference and means.
Posted by: schwammerl

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/18/07 01:45 PM

Wzkit

That's interesting you played W&L and Hailun side by side in the same showroom. Are there indeed dealers in the States who carry both brands?
Playing a Hailun and a Steigerman side by side in the same showroom could be even more reveiling for the North American market.

I do have any doubt that the German top brands like Sauter are still better soundwise. Only the mid-segment Japanese have something (the better chinese pianos) to be worried about.
Apart from sound there are of course other elements like built quality, action touch, resell value etc. which influence choice and price difference.

schwammerl.
Posted by: Wzkit

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/18/07 01:53 PM

Schwarmmel,
The dealer in question was not in the States, but here in tiny Singapore. What attracted me to Hailun/Wendl & Lung was the price. Regardless of the name on the fallboard, you are quite right that for that kind of price, the Japanese had better be worried! Personally, I wouldn't mind getting one of their uprights, just as a practice instrument.
Posted by: turandot

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/18/07 03:56 PM

Thank you Wzkit and Schwammerl for all the information. I did inquire by E-mail through the Wendl and Lung website a while back not even realizing it was a Wailun built instrument. I never got a reply. I think the E-mail routing was direct to Wien. I may have sent to the incorrect address.

It's interesting that Schwammerl should mention Kemble / Yamaha. I've had occasion to play three Kemble uprights in my area in the past few weeks and they were all very suited to my subjective taste, a little brighter and nearer in the treble than the understated European pianos, and much less penetrating in the treble than the Yamaha, kind of midway between. I'll probably draw fire for saying these things here, but it's just a personal opinion. A salesman told me his Kemble was a rebadged Yamaha, but it was no Yamaha soundwise. I don't know if it's the sounding board, the belly, or what but I think it's more than the prep. It was a moot issue since the Kembles are past my price point anyway, but I was and am tempted to spend more for the sound that I heard.
In any case it sounds like the Wailun has some merit. and I should make a point to check the Wailun pianos out. Maybe someone on the forum will step forward to reveal himself as the new dealer in my area.

Thanks again
Posted by: ftp

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/18/07 04:25 PM

turnadot:

Perhaps this website will help your search.

www.hailunusa.com/news.shtml


EDIT: Just noticed you already looked there. Sorry.
Posted by: Dino_dup1

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/18/07 07:30 PM

Hi Turnadot,

As mentioned earlier in this thread, the Steigerman “Premium” line is made in the Hailun factory located in Ningbo, China. The pianos are the same in scale and design with a few differences:

• The Steigerman "Premiums" also come with Renner hammers and are also available with Renner actions in the grands.

• The Steigerman “Premiums” only use vertical models with agraffes. I am not sure about the Hailun verticals as the factory does make some without agraffes.

• The Steigerman “Premiums” have some additional cabinet detailing added such as a violin shaped lid-prop, molding added to the grand legs,brass trim on the lyre, different shaped music racks, etc. Essentially minor differences.

• All the Premiums have copper colored plates and black muting felts. The color is similar to Schimmels and Bosie’s plate color. Esthetics only but looks really nice with the black felts.

• Steigerman also employs our own QC inspectors which go over every “Premium” piano after the factory inspectors finish with them. In addition, I am there myself every couple of months to oversee production and QC methods. This extra attention to QC has made a big difference in the quality of our products in not only our “Premium” line but in our “Classic” line of pianos from the Beijing Xinghai factory as well.

Should you like to try some of our new "Premium" pianos, we presently have dealers in the LA area. Please contact our main office in Canada for the location nearest you. 1-888-651-8119

I hope you enjoy the ride!
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/18/07 11:42 PM

 Quote:
• The Steigerman "Premiums" also come with Renner hammers and are also available with Renner actions in the grands.
We found the Renner hammers particularly good for voicing the piano in the treble, giving it a rather sweet and resonant tone in this otherwise often harsh or thin sounding part of a piano.

The Stei 123 upright, a piano which actually sounds better than many 52" uprights I have ever played before, has become a great success for us.

As a result of its truly amazing tonal volume and richness of sound - and with the new Stei 125 just coming onto market - we have discontinued to offer anymore any grands under minimal size of 5'2".

Norbert
Posted by: PSS

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 09:59 AM

Turandot,

I spent a lot of time in the Hailun booth at NAMM, and I can tell you that this is a very impressive piano. I was able to meet Hailun C. as well as their management, and I think is definately a piano you will want to try out.

Good Luck!
Posted by: PSS

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 10:02 AM

oh yeah I forgot to mention... Some features of the piano such as action, and hammers as an example can be upgraded to Renner as well.
Posted by: Dino_dup1

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 11:34 AM

I am not questioning Terry Wilson’s integrity, but the information he is giving is not really accurate. According to Steigerman’s contract with the Hailun factory;

• Steigerman retains the exclusive right to use Renner Hammers in North America combined with the regular factory production action.

Steigerman paid the Renner Company in Germany a great deal of money to travel to Vienna, Austria to measure all three grands for action production. If Hailun were to do the same, then they too would have specifications to provide Renner for action production, only then also using Renner hammers. As of yet, I do not believe that has happened. An independent dealer could also do the same however the cost would be prohibitive. Initially we thought that it would be a nice option to have grands available with the “sizzle” of Renner action. After ordering pianos made with full Renner actions, we have come to the conclusion that the normal factory action is so good, an “upgrade” to a full Renner action is not necessary or worth the additional cost. The Renner hammers do provide a superior tone I believe and a much great malleability as well.

In addition to the exclusivity on Renner hammers combined with the normal factory action, Steigerman also has an exclusive in the North American market on:

• “Schwaiger” produced soundboards for both vertical and grand pianos.

• “Bosendorfer Frame Color” for use in North America on both vertical and grand pianos.

Everything else in the scale and design of the Hailun pianos and the Steigerman “Premium” pianos is the same or is available to both parties on a non-exclusive basis.

We have been importing our “Premium” pianos from Hailun for only about 6 months now but in a short time have sold through a great deal of our “EuroAsian” hybrids. We are now waiting for the completion of our 15th container (about 27 units per container) of “Premium” pianos and we continue to slowly add dealers across the U.S. and Canada. We did not want to ramp-up too quickly as we have been making small changes to the production up until recently. We now feel that we have the design dialed-in perfectly.

Terry Wilson was correct in saying that the Hailun pianos are “very impressive”. I know Mr. Hailun Chen very well and he is committed to producing the best pianos to come from China. He has gone to great lengths to insure that his design and production is top-quality by employing engineers and technicians such as:

• George “Frank” Emerson – Formerly of Mason & Hamlin and Baldwin is the factory’s Chief Designer.
• Zlatkovic Sibin - From Europe who brings his experience with Bosendorfer into the factory is in charge of tuning and voicing in the factory.
• Peter Veletzky – From the Wendl & Lung family in Austria is the factory’s Senior Technical advisor.
• Ema Shigeru – Brings manufacturing expertise from his 30 years at Kawai.

We at Steigerman are proud to be associated with Mr. Chen, his factory and the talented technical team he has assembled.
Posted by: PSS

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 12:05 PM

 Quote:
I am not questioning Terry Wilson’s integrity, but the information he is giving is not really accurate. According to Steigerman’s contract with the Hailun factory;
Hey Dino,

I am only repeating what I was told, I don't know the inner workings of your relationship with Hailun, and definately want to say if I misunderstood then my apologies.

In all fairness and in full disclosure I must say in playing, and seeing both the Steigerman and the Hailun at NAMM they are both very impressive. Anyone who would want to discount their quality based on the fact that they are made in China really needs to play and hear them before making a judgement.

The thing that impressed me about the Hailun piano besides the piano itself is the owner and management. Mr. Hailun is very proud of his piano to the point of putting his own name on it. I think that speaks volumes to the quality of the piano.
Posted by: Piano*Dad

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 12:19 PM

 Quote:
Mr. Hailun is very proud of his piano to the point of putting his own name on it. I think that speaks volumes to the quality of the piano.
The sooner that happens for all Chinese makers the better. But I'll bet it is accompanied by a narrowing of the price gap between them and the rest.

We discussed this thoroughly in other threads. As quality goes up in China price likely will be rising as well. This will occur for at least two reasons. The first is that quality is related to labor skill, and labor skill is highly correlated with wages. As the skill and experience level of Chinese piano labor rises, those workers will be able to leverage higher compensation. The second force is overall wage gains in China. As China develops the demand for labor is rising and this is putting strong upward pressure on all wages. Piano production is fairly labor-intensive, so expect the price advantage on Chinese pianos to narrow over time.

And then, we'll have all those Indian stencils next. \:D :p
Posted by: Steve Cohen

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 12:23 PM

 Quote:
Originally posted by Piano*Dad:
 Quote:
Mr. Hailun is very proud of his piano to the point of putting his own name on it. I think that speaks volumes to the quality of the piano.
The sooner that happens for all Chinese makers the better. But I'll bet it is accompanied by a narrowing of the price gap between them and the rest.

We discussed this thoroughly in other threads. As quality goes up in China price likely will be rising as well. This will occur for at least two reasons. The first is that quality is related to labor skill, and labor skill is highly correlated with wages. As the skill and experience level of Chinese piano labor rises, those workers will be able to leverage higher compensation. The second force is overall wage gains in China. As China develops the demand for labor is rising and this is putting strong upward pressure on all wages. Piano production is fairly labor-intensive, so expect the price advantage on Chinese pianos to narrow over time.

And then, we'll have all those Indian stencils next. \:D :p [/b]
And Dad ther is another critical factor. That is the tremendous pressure the World Bank and others are putting on China to re-value their currancy the yuan. It is inevidable and will raise the prices of all Chinese exports.
Posted by: PSS

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 12:32 PM

 Quote:
And then, we'll have all those Indian stencils next.
Are you referring to electric razors again? \:D
Posted by: turandot

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 12:37 PM

Mr. Flacco

Thank you for all of the details of the different instruments. I appreciate especially that you don't denigrate 'standard' Hailun pianos in listing the Steigerman upgrades, also that you do mention that some of the differences are cosmetic. As to Mr. Wilson's comment, he complimented Hailun based on his impressions at NAMM. If he is off in one detail of the European 'upgrades' available, I assume that things are currently so convoluted in the contracting of Chincese pianos to Western distribution channels that it would be well-nigh impossible for anyone to have a handle on all up-to-date information at any given moment.

To be perfectly honest, when I looked at the Hailun website and saw the company name on the fallboard, that made an impression on me as a consumer. I thought....a Chinese piano that is willing to put its Chinese name on a piano and not worry about having a bought and paid-for German name, now that's worth looking into (at least for me). When the replies came in to my thread, and I started hearing about the Wendl and Lung pass-through in Vienna and the Steigerman premium branding, I started thinking....here we go again. I'm not trying to be critical here of the pianos and what upgrades may do to enhance their quality. I'm just commenting on the frustration of a consumer in this marketplace. I recall an old Norbert post on Piano World where he made the point that his shop at that point was carrying only Steigerman premium as opposed to Steigerman, due to significant iprovements in quality. I remember thinking that I wouldn't appreciate that news if I had bought a non-premium Steigerman a few months before. I also thought....what's next...a Steigerman premium platinum six months later.

So let me ask you a question since you have been so forthright. Who's to blame for all the confusion. Is it the Chinese manufacturers who sell contracted pianos out the front door of the factory and then sell duplicates or near duplicates out the back door to anyone else?
Is it western-style marketing that feels a distribution chain must be branded with some German or pseudo-German sounding name....even in some cases to the extent of different names in adjacent western countries? Is there a perception in North American marketing that western consumers just won't buy a Chinese piano at this point unless it has some Renner, Abel, Dehonit, Delignit etc...goodies inside? Is it something else? I can't believe it's technological innovation.

Also, I have one specific question for you. Since you state that Steigerman premiums were fitted for Renner components in Vienna, should I take that to mean that Steigerman premium pianos are identical to Wendl and Lung, or is just a geogaphical coincidence?

Thanks again for being so forthright.
Posted by: Love Pianos

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 12:40 PM

I too saw the Hailun pianos at Namm and was Highly impressed. Great piano.
Posted by: turandot

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 12:53 PM

I just noticed that while I was writing my post, there appeared some other posts that have the potential to derail this thread into another PSS related catfight.

If this is anyone's intent, please keep your decorum. A catfight with cheapshots hurled back and forth makes everyone involved look bad, right or wrong.
Posted by: Dino_dup1

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 02:36 PM

Hello again Turandot,

To address some of your comments and questions:

 Quote:
If he is off in one detail of the European 'upgrades' available, I assume that things are currently so convoluted in the contracting of Chincese pianos to Western distribution channels that it would be well-nigh impossible for anyone to have a handle on all up-to-date information at any given moment.
I am sure you have up-to-date- information concerning your personal business just as I have up-to-date information concerning Steigerman’s. It is best for others to not make statements of fact about issues which they are not close to and of course if speculating, then to say so. In addition, I feel that the addition of Renner hammers are a significant upgrade however, to be fair, I believe that other high-quality hammers such as Abel might perform just as well.

 Quote:
Who's to blame for all the confusion. Is it the Chinese manufacturers who sell contracted pianos out the front door of the factory and then sell duplicates or near duplicates out the back door to anyone else?
Is it western-style marketing that feels a distribution chain must be branded with some German or pseudo-German sounding name....even in some cases to the extent of different names in adjacent western countries? Is there a perception in North American marketing that western consumers just won't buy a Chinese piano at this point unless it has some Renner, Abel, Dehonit, Delignit etc...goodies inside? Is it something else?
I can’t say that there is anyone to blame. I do know that when I worked for Young Chang for many years, it was very hard to sell pianos to consumers which said “Young Chang” on the fallboard, no matter the quality or the price. I have worked many sales and heard the comment “I wouldn’t have “Young Chang” in my living room” countless times. I have heard the same of Samick, Hsinghai, Hyundai and others to name a few. Manufacturers and distributors are just reacting to what consumers demand I believe. Initially Yamaha had a similar problem. It took them many years to develop their name into acceptance. It is an accomplishment which is very hard to duplicate, no matter how earnest the intention.

Our using European components in the construction of Steigerman "Premium" pianos are not just for the "sizzle" but we feel that the addition of some of these featurs are truly performance upgrades.

 Quote:
Since you state that Steigerman premiums were fitted for Renner components in Vienna, should I take that to mean that Steigerman premium pianos are identical to Wendl and Lung, or is just a geogaphical coincidence?
I can’t speak for all of Wendl & Lung’s features but the initial scale and design of the pianos are the same. We were allowed to use pianos in their Austrian showroom for designing the Renner action models we produce.

The only pianos you will see from the Hailun factory in North America currently will be either from Hailun distribution or from Steigerman.

After all this, I hope that you too are impressed with pianos from the Hailun factory as some of the rest of us. My feeling is that our "Premium" pianos are the best available from any country at or near their price points.
Posted by: Axtremus

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 04:03 PM

 Quote:
Originally posted by Piano Superstore:

Mr. Hailun is very proud of his piano to the point of putting his own name on it.
That is wrong.

There is no person named "Mr. Hailun" running the Hailun piano factory in Ningbo. (Dino can verify.)
Posted by: PSS

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 04:13 PM

 Quote:
Originally posted by Axtremus:
 Quote:
Originally posted by Piano Superstore:

Mr. Hailun is very proud of his piano to the point of putting his own name on it.
That is wrong.

There is no person named "Mr. Hailun" running the Hailun piano factory in Ningbo. (Dino can verify.) [/b]
Really? Could someone ellaborate?
Posted by: Steve Cohen

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 04:30 PM

 Quote:
Originally posted by Dino:
I can’t say that there is anyone to blame. I do know that when I worked for Young Chang for many years, it was very hard to sell pianos to consumers which said “Young Chang” on the fallboard, no matter the quality or the price. I have worked many sales and heard the comment “I wouldn’t have “Young Chang” in my living room” countless times. I have heard the same of Samick, Hsinghai, Hyundai and others to name a few. Manufacturers and distributors are just reacting to what consumers demand I believe. Initially Yamaha had a similar problem. It took them many years to develop their name into acceptance. It is an accomplishment which is very hard to duplicate, no matter how earnest the intention.[/b]
A great analysis, Dino.

I was the oldest Yamaha dealership in the USA (1961-1998). It took them over 15 years to gain acceptance. People simply didn't want guests to see "Yamaha" on their piano, not matter how well it performed.
Posted by: ftp

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 04:33 PM

Ax

The HailunUSA website names Hailun Chen as the owner.

Partial quote:
“Our Chairman, Mr. Hailun Chen, embodies a truly entrepreneurial spirit and, at the same time, embraces traditional values,” said Ms. Perry. “His vision clearly reflects this. Ningbo is traditionally viewed as the birthplace of the first piano builder in China. Mr. Chen wants Ningbo to also be known as the home of the best piano built in China.”
Posted by: Dino_dup1

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 04:40 PM

The Owner of the Hailun factory is Mr. Chen Hailun. Mr. Chen’s business card reads:

“Chen Hailun”
“Chairman Director”

In all fairness to Terry; as is customary in China, one’s last name comes first on business cards. If one was not familiar with Chinese customs or had not been formally introduced to someone, going by a business card for example, would be confusing.
Posted by: schwammerl

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 04:45 PM

Really is there no Mr Hailun?

Then Wendl & Lung must be lieing when showing pictures of Mr Chen Hailun ( click Wendl & Lung History - 1990:4th picture form right): http://www.wendl-lung.com/Website/English/fs_wendllung.htm

Or the Swiss W&L distrubutor must then be wrong also (3rd and 4th picture): http://www.scanavini.ch/galerie.htm

schwammerl.
Posted by: schwammerl

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 05:35 PM

 Quote:
Steigerman paid the Renner Company in Germany a great deal of money to travel to Vienna, Austria to measure all three grands for action production.
This seems strange to me because W&L Vienna only carries two[/b] grand pianos: the 161 & 178. Why should they have had a 151 (5'-0") available at their premisses? (unless they would plan to integrate it into their product line in the near future)

 Quote:
The only pianos you will see from the Hailun factory in North America currently will be either from Hailun distribution or from Steigerman.
If we believe Peter Veletzky (W&L) the 115 (45 in. = 115 cm) upright should be an original W&L design (by Veltzky himself) which even excisted before W&L set up the collaboration with Hailun. I must quote him in German from the forum on VioWorld-Klassik, where in 2005 he intered into a rather fierce discussion on Chinese pianos:
 Quote:
Abgesehen davon beschäftige ich mich tatsächlich mit dem Design und der Konstruktion eigener Wendl & Lung Modelle, die mit dem bereits auf dem Markt befindlichen Modell 115 ihren Anfang gefunden haben und nie unter einem anderen Namen auf den Markt kommen werden.
; http://www.vioworld-klassik.de/go.php?ur...e=Neueinsteiger
I cannot find a Hailun 115 upright neighter on the Hailun China website nor on the U.S. site.

Apparently Wendl & Lung piano are available as such in North America (U.S.): http://www.pianofortechicago.com/

schwammmerl.
Posted by: Dino_dup1

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 07:10 PM

Schwammerl,

 Quote:
Then Wendl & Lung must be lieing when showing pictures of Mr Chen Hailun ( click Wendl & Lung History - 1990:4th picture form right): http://www.wendl-lung.com/Website/English/fs_wendllung.htm

Or the Swiss W&L distrubutor must then be wrong also (3rd and 4th picture): http://www.scanavini.ch/galerie.htm
I do not think anyone was lying as you suggest. That is a rather strong accusation to make. I think that they were merley mistaken as to what they printed on their websites. If you read my earlier post, you will understand why that may have been.


 Quote:
This seems strange to me because W&L Vienna only carries two grand pianos: the 161 & 178. Why should they have had a 151 (5'-0") available at their premisses? (unless they would plan to integrate it into their product line in the near future)
You are correct in that the only pianos W & L handle are the larger grands. We never ended up ordering any 151’s with Renner actions ourselves. We decided the cost was too much to add at that price point. The Renner engineers felt that with the action drawings and specifications of all three models from the factory, and physically measuring the 161 and the 178, they could also then come up with an action to accurately fit the 151 should we ever decide to order any for that model.


 Quote:
If we believe Peter Veletzky (W&L) the 115 (45 in. = 115 cm) upright should be an original W&L design (by Veltzky himself) which even excisted before W&L set up the collaboration with Hailun. I must quote him in German from the forum on VioWorld-Klassik, where in 2005 he intered into a rather fierce discussion on Chinese pianos:
Yes, it is my understanding that the 115 model was Peter’s design. I do not understand your point however. The design is not exclusive to Wendle & Lung if that was your question.

 Quote:
Apparently Wendl & Lung piano are available as such in North America (U.S.): http://www.pianofortechicago.com/
A couple of years ago, give or take, this dealer did buy some Wendl & Lung pianos I am told but W & L is no longer distributing in the U.S. My statement concerning current distribution is accurate. Additionally, I do not believe that pianos from the Hailun factory which were made in 2005 accurately reflect the quality of the products presently being manufactured there.

I hope this answers your questions.
Posted by: turandot

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 07:41 PM

First, thank you to those who have posted here. You have supplied a wealth of factual information. I just hope I can remember it longer than fifteen minutes.

I wanted to follow up on one point.

from Steve Cohen
 Quote:
I was the oldest Yamaha dealership in the USA (1961-1998). It took them over 15 years to gain acceptance. People simply didn't want guests to see "Yamaha" on their piano, not matter how well it performed.
from Dino Flacco
 Quote:
I do know that when I worked for Young Chang for many years, it was very hard to sell pianos to consumers which said “Young Chang” on the fallboard, no matter the quality or the price. I have worked many sales and heard the comment “I wouldn’t have “Young Chang” in my living room” countless times. I have heard the same of Samick, Hsinghai, Hyundai and others to name a few.
An important question is whether the consumers who didn't want Young Chang or Yamaha in their house were satisfied to have the instrument in question knowing that it was made in Japan or Korea (in these two cases), and only wanted that others not notice the origin of their piano on the fallboard.

If all these consumers wanted was to hide the Asian origin of the instrument while being happy to have said instrument, then current Asian piano manufacturers could simply offer the application of a stencil of their house-brand German name as an optional upgrade and recoup the cost of the name acquisition from the consumers who wanted to pay for it. This would be similar to a motor vehicle vanity plate. Those with specific naming needs would pay to address those needs. The company could even offer a personalized stencil for the truly egocontric.

If, on the other hand, individuals do not want to have a Japanese, Korean, Chinese, Indonesian etc. piano in their home at all, and all of the stencil branding is an attempt to get around the issue, then it's a far different matter.

If you look at the information on the web supplied by piano manufacturers, retrofitters and distributors who offer their wares by carrying on the tradition of old piano manufacturers who went out of business decades ago (and that is as kind a way of stating the practice as I can think of), you find an untold wealth of information about the origin and history of the defunct company, often with photographs and testimonials culled from ancient industry publications. The need to buttress the acquired names with all of this completely irrelevant historical material would suggest that there is much more in play here than simply giving the Western market a name (or names) that is (are) more socially acceptable. Rather, it seems like information is being supplied that attempts to enhance the image of the name-acquiring company and in some cases to reassure the buyer that the company products have been in the marketplace forever and that the consumer can buy with confidence. Even if some would argue that is not the intent, that is certainly the result.

I'm not trying to point a finger at any particular company. There's enough of this "stuff" out there to fill a thick volume of European piano family history. It would be completely unfair to single out any company. Also, it would probably be premature to applaud a company that does not engage in this practice. That company has either already made its name the old fashioned way or has just chosen a different marketing strategy for its own reasons. It may stand on higher ethical ground, but that's not for sure, and things could change quickly.
Posted by: Steve Cohen

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 08:18 PM

Turnadot,

In my experience most shoppers didn't want the name to show, rather than objecting to the country of manufacture.

I too object to the "false history" practice of many manufacturers. It is particularly obvious in soundboard decals. Many brands, including companies I have represented both at retail and thru consulting, put decal on soundboards tauting "Winner World Piano Exposition, 1886", when the scale design that actually won had been abandoned years ago. The same goes for their history. If the design is dissimilar, then tauting the history is misleading.

For example, Young Chang recently re-labeled their Pramberger Series "Weber". Their website tauts Albert Weber's history. I disagree with this marketing methodology. I do not want to slam YC or single them out. MANY manufactures use this tactic. (In fact, YC is careful to word the text as "out of the tradition of" or similar wording.

It is also true of the way dealerships are represented. A major chain in my market claims a founding in 1912. It was purchased by a buyer completely unrealted to the founders in about 1975!

When one changes scale designs, or in the case of dealerships changes owner-families, the history of the oruiginal doesn't go with the sale. It follows the design or, in the case of dealerships, the family of the founder(s).
Posted by: Axtremus

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 10:18 PM

 Quote:
Originally posted by Dino:

The Owner of the Hailun factory is Mr. Chen Hailun. Mr. Chen’s business card reads:

“Chen Hailun”
“Chairman Director”

In all fairness to Terry; as is customary in China, one’s last name comes first on business cards. If one was not familiar with Chinese customs or had not been formally introduced to someone, going by a business card for example, would be confusing.
You're right. I screwed up.
My apology to Mr. Wilson and Mr. Chen.
Posted by: PSS

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 10:32 PM

 Quote:
Originally posted by Axtremus:
 Quote:
Originally posted by Dino:

The Owner of the Hailun factory is Mr. Chen Hailun. Mr. Chen’s business card reads:

“Chen Hailun”
“Chairman Director”

In all fairness to Terry; as is customary in China, one’s last name comes first on business cards. If one was not familiar with Chinese customs or had not been formally introduced to someone, going by a business card for example, would be confusing.
You're right. I screwed up.
My apology to Mr. Wilson and Mr. Chen. [/b]
Apology accepted. I was formally introduced to him at NAMM, and was very impressed with his passion, pianos, and business plan.

Bottom line the piano is very impressive.
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/19/07 11:37 PM

 Quote:
Bottom line the piano is very impressive.
Bottom line, Chinese pianos have arrived.

Especially said pianos above..... ;\)

I announced this months ago when mentioning the new Steigerman Premium series - and next getting raked over the coals here.

http://www.pianoworld.com/ubb/ubb/ultimatebb.php?/topic/1/15212.html#000003

[Even received a stern warning from Frank's headoffice.... ]

Good'ol Norbert who saw the light some 10 years ago and next being accused of hyping this new name out there called "Estonia" - was at it again.....

But more's to come.

This time, won't tell.

Norbert \:o
Posted by: schwammerl

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/20/07 06:03 AM

Mr. Flacco

 Quote:
Schwammerl,


quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Then Wendl & Lung must be lieing when showing pictures of Mr Chen Hailun ( click Wendl & Lung History - 1990:4th picture form right): http://www.wendl-lung.com/Website/English/fs_wendllung.htm

Or the Swiss W&L distrubutor must then be wrong also (3rd and 4th picture): http://www.scanavini.ch/galerie.htm

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I do not think anyone was lying as you suggest. That is a rather strong accusation to make. I think that they were merley mistaken as to what they printed on their websites. If you read my earlier post, you will understand why that may have been.
Of course I did not mean anyone was lying. This statement was just ironically meant as nobody could ever imagine that on two different websites pictures were posted with the name of Mr. Chen Hailun or Hailun Chen under it, and that the person would not excist. Sorry you misunderstood.

 Quote:
Yes, it is my understanding that the 115 model was Peter’s design. I do not understand your point however. The design is not exclusive to Wendle & Lung if that was your question.
I was just a bit puzzeled because the statement Peter Veletzky once made on a German forum was quite firm: "Modell 115 would never be on the market with another name (W&L)"
 Quote:
die mit dem bereits auf dem Markt befindlichen Modell 115 ihren Anfang gefunden haben und nie unter einem anderen Namen auf den Markt kommen werden.
see: http://www.vioworld-klassik.de/go.php?ur...e=Neueinsteiger
But this is not an issue; business strategies may change over time.

schwammerl.
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/20/07 04:13 PM

I don't think statements by a distributor of any one manufacturer make sense to be counter-checked for consistency by those made by others on different continents.

Anybody who carefully compares websites by manufacturers on a worldwide basis, might come across certain models or description of them not entirely identical or consistent on the varying sites.

In Europe for example, nobody claims to have their pianos "made or seasoned for the European continent only"....which certainly is not to discourage buyers for such make to buy it on the other side of the ocean anyways .....

If you happen to look at the 115 Wendl&Lung model in Europe, let the dealer demonstrate it to you - then decide yourself if it is suitable for you.

Wishing you the best for your search!


Norbert \:o
Posted by: schwammerl

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/20/07 05:03 PM

 Quote:
I don't think statements by a distributor of any one manufacturer make sense to be counter-checked for consistency by those made by others on different continents.
Norbert, what distributor[/b] are you referring to? Just to learn something, did you mean Wendl & Lung Vienna (P. Veletzky) and is your definition of W&L, a distributor?

How would you define Steigerman Music Corp. If I look at "the company" on their website they don't give me the impression of seeing themselves as merely a distributor, but I could be wrong.
 Quote:
A responsive instrument begins with the company that makes it.
or
 Quote:
So Steigerman has gone to great lengths to build an exceptionally responsive instrument.
schwammerl.
Posted by: turandot

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/20/07 05:12 PM

Hello Schwammerl

That's really the issue. And if you industry pros can be confused about it or squabble about it, think of the consumer's bewilderment. Some piano companies seem to be little more than retrofitters who have the factory's permission to mate some European upgrade part to a stock Chinese model. Their exclusivity (if any) may be limited to just the application of that one upgrade.

In most industries retrofitted products appear after the stock model is in use. It seems with pianos that the opposite can be true. Thus Wendl and Lung and Steigerman are in the western marketplace before the stock Hailun appears.
Posted by: schwammerl

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/20/07 05:20 PM

Turandot

You might be right with your statement. But if you would consider me as an industry pro, then you get it wrong (check my profile please). I am not and was never involved in the piano business but just an ordinary forum member piano owner!

In fact I asked the question just to find out/to learn what the "real pros" have to say about it.

schwammerl.
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/20/07 07:19 PM

schwammerl:

As an owner of a nice Wendl&Lung grand yourself, I am surprised you keep torturing yourself with these kind of questions.

Ever having bought anything 'German' these days and then finding out some 10 odd companies from around the globe were involved building the thing?

Talked to and shook hands with everybody involved in the making and distributing of your last Braun, Phillips or Remington shaver in the past? \:D

Please don't forget that not the whole world is like old Europe [used to be...] where companies often go back 100's of years and are still sometimes owned by the original, founding families..... ;\)

It's my understanding you are actually very happy with the piano you own and made your decision at time of purchase having had many other choices available to you as well - I believe you also looked at Schimmels at the time ??

So, why now all these questions?

Everybody knows,Hailun is the maker of both Wendl & Lung in Europe and Steigerman Premium pianos in North America: both companies act as their own importers/distributors and have their own specifications and/or exclusive features for their pianos and for their own markets.

For us as dealers the by far most important concern is the same as 99% of our customers have: a great piano offered at great price and being backed 100% by its company.

If one nees "more" [or 'less'... \:D ] - one can always look of course elsewhere...it's a free world.

It seems, you haven't yourself.

Norbert \:\)
Posted by: turandot

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/20/07 09:42 PM

from Norbert
 Quote:
Everybody knows,Hailun is the maker of both Wendl & Lung in Europe and Steigerman Premium pianos in North America: both companies act as their own importers/distributors and have their own specifications and/or exclusive features for their pianos and for their own markets.
You are wrong. Not everyone knows this. It's a pretty smug comment in my estimation.

I wasn't going to get back into this thread since I NOW know enough about the choices available, but the statement that everybody knows should not go unchallenged.

Many posters to this thread have clarified the Hailun / Steigerman / Wendl and Lung connection.
Mr. Flacco has documented the Steigerman journey to Vienna where borrowed pianos from Wendl and Lung were used to ascertain the suitability of Renner hammers and full actions for use in Wailun stock pianos that Steigerman planned to market with Renner upgrades. If that sounds confusing, it is....and it's the procedure, not the language.

Wzkit added information that in Singapore a person could play Wendl and Lung and Hailun pianos in the same dealership and also noted that the sound and price were similar. On the other hand, your contributions until now have consisted mainly in sharing your enthusiasm for Steigerman premium pianos with fellow industry folks and potential customers. Oh yes...and dismissing the Wendl and Lung Veletsky design as not worthy of being bothered with.
 Quote:
Here in Canada, we don't even bother much with the 115 Steigerman Premium and concentrate much more on their 123 and 125 upright models.
Steigerman claims on their website to be a builder of pianos.
 Quote:
Strike a single bass note on a piano of distinctive European lineage and you'll agree there's no mistaking its rich, resonant tone. What you're hearing is the sound of meticulous craftsmanship, uncompromising design and years of piano-making experience. As you might expect, this sound comes at a price. One as rich as the instrument's bloodline.......
So Steigerman has gone to great lengths to build an exceptionally responsive instrument. Hammers, action mechanism, soundboard and strings have all been carefully engineered to maximize performance, without compromising Steigerman's ongoing commitment to affordability.
What is a builder? What is a piano maker? If the first part of the Steigerman blurb came from a certain Mr. Wilson, he would be pilloried for it.

Maybe consumers like me have to change our definiton of what a builder is when we think about pianos. Shopping for a piano has been a revelation for me...a revelation of how far information can be pushed past the point of truthfulness without some people batting an eyelash.

Does everyone know? NO, everyone does NOT.

Since the stated purpose of this forum is to bring about transparency in the industry, I would think that the guiding philosophy would be that everyone should know, should be informed, so as to make correct choices in purchasing an expensive item. A piano is after all not an electric shaver. I would think that your comments to Schwammerl are not in keeping with that philosophy.
 Quote:
As an owner of a nice Wendl&Lung grand yourself, I am surprised you keep torturing yourself with these kind of questions.
If one nees "more" [or 'less'... ] - one can always look of course elsewhere...it's a free world.

It seems, you haven't yourself.
.
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/21/07 12:28 AM

torandot:

My comments were directed at someone [schwammerl..] who seems to be torturing himself while actually being the happy owner of one of Hailun's pianos.

You're *not*.

So, what's the agenda?

What contribution to you wish to make for those who seem to be quite able to make choices for themselves?

Kindly elaborate.

Norbert
Posted by: turandot

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/21/07 03:22 AM

Nurbert,

I'll stand on my earlier post. If you are not going to get the point, then you aren't, and actually in the scheme of things, that makes little or no difference.
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/21/07 11:41 AM

Turandot:

You remind me on a guy who takes courses in bio-chemistry before going on a date.

To "understand" what you'll face when having a cup of coffee with someone later..... :p

Unfortunately neither your opinion [whatever that is..] nor me, being "in the scheme of things", will prevent the inevitable:

Hailun, under name 'Steigerman Premium' and Wendl&Lung, will be and presently *is* building the best,or at least among the very best, pianos coming currently out of China.

Our company didn't commit itself until this was abundundantly clear - nor did the many customers of this piano to date.

Your opinion may very well be in posssible contradiction of this.

Just one final advice: Steigerman Premium pianos are extremely appealing for both classical and Jazz type players. [especially the 123 ones up.... ;\) ]

But don't try one.

I might be held responsible for you ending up getting one yourself in the end......

Norbert \:D
Posted by: cerulean5

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/21/07 12:03 PM

Hi Turandot,

Norbert is ...well, just being *Norbertian.* ;\)

While I applaud you, turandot, for taking him to task on the post in question, you aren't going to change the way he writes (occasionally nebulous enough to puzzle and/or irritate people). Many people have taken him to task for it in the past, to absolutely no effect whatsoever. \:D

Cheerfully observing,

--c5
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/21/07 12:13 PM

"Taking me to task?"

Good one.

Norbert \:D
Posted by: cerulean5

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/21/07 12:30 PM

That's OK, the joke's on you.

--c5
Posted by: turandot

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/26/07 06:12 PM

I am trying to resuscitate this thread because Mr. Terry Wilson of Piano$uperstore indicated over the weekend on another thread that he would be offering a line of Hailun pianos.
from Mr. Wilson
 Quote:
I am happy to annouce that we will be introducing a new line of pianos made in the Hailun factory very soon that I think you will be interested in.
It would seem to be of interest to follow up on this since there are relatively few opportunities to see what Piano$uperstore is planning next. Most discussion in this forum focuses on what it has already done.

To recap this thread before that announcement:

1. Everyone who commented from firsthand experience on pianos made in the Hailun factory was complimentary to them, with several contributors speaking of them in glowing terms. That included Mr. Dino Flacco of Steigerman music who provided a very detailed and (IMO) fair-minded evaluation of the different Hailun products.

2. HailunUSA is in the process of assembling its own dealer network in the US, and within a short tiime will announce its first dealership on the West Coast.

3. Existing distribution channels for Hailun-made pianos include Wendl and Lung and Steigerman Music.

4. Steigerman Music offers Hailun pianos with a variety of European upgrades in Canada and the United States. Those pianos are sold on the market as Steigerman premium.

5. Wendl and Lung is involved in the design of some Hailun products. Their arrangement with Hailun seems to be in the nature of a partnership. Wendl and Lung Hailun products are marketed in Europe after passing through Vienna for a final quality control check. Wendl and Lung pianos are also offered in Japan, Singapore and other Asian countries. Presumably these pianos do not pass through Vienna. Wendl and Lung pianos are available in eastern Canada. Wendl and Lung pianos were shipped to Pianoforte in Chicago and available there a while ago, although possibly not now.

6. M. Hailun Chen, the owner of Hailun piano, has decided to put his name on the fallboard in marketing his pianos directly in the US.

7. Mr. Chen seems to have such a low profile in the industry that his very existence was questioned early in this thread.

8. Because of a disagreement over the use of the Steigerman name in Piano$superstore advertising, Mr. Wilson and Mr. Flacco (who heads the US marketing effort for Steigerman) are not on the best of terms currently.

10.The standing disagreement between Mr. Wilson and Steigerman is probably related to the Steigerman classic line, and not the premium line which is a Hailun product.

Initially I was interested in the Hailun piano because as a consumer I was attracted to any Chinese piano company which would put its own feet in the water to test the market, rather than hiding behind Western-style marketing arrangements that involve Germanic names and dubious verbiage. I did not know that Hailun was already marketed outside of China under two different names, and that the pseudo-Germanic family heritage nonsense was already in place.(an ignorant consumer....what else would you expect?)

Now I am interested for a different reason. I still haven't been able to try out a Hailun piano, and my initial enthsiasm is waning. but I am curious to see how a piano which has drawn very very favorable reviews from those who have tried it will compete simultaneously in the US market as HailunUSA and Steigerman premium with the colorful and controversial Mr. Wilson joining in the fun.

I have sent two E-mails to HailunUSA in Atlanta asking for confirmation of the Piano$uperstore connection. I have not received a reply. As a consumer, I may never receive one. Perhaps someone in the industry who for some masochistic reason shares my curiosity (and thirst for knowledge about Piano$uperstore) could cut through bureaucracy and verify Mr. Wilson's claim. In other words, could someone take the ball and run with it?
Posted by: PSS

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/27/07 01:14 AM

Turandot,
Give me a call. If you want to try one out we can arrange it.

Thanks
Posted by: Frank

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/27/07 02:19 AM

Turandot,
Call him. He will arrange for you to try one.
Call me too.
I can arrange for you to try one too.
I can also arrange for you to try a Steinway,Samick,Y.Chang,Bechstein,Steigerman,Fazioli,Estonia,Wyman,Baldwin,Knabe... My wrist is sore writing all these pianos I can arrange for you to try.
I can't sell you a new one though.
Even if I buy one through another dealer in the box out of the warehouse/bankruptcy,liquidation, it would be used as the original factory/distributor invoice would be registered to the other dealer.
Unless of course he is an Authorized dealer for that product.
But if that is the case, there is no supply chain to be so secretive about.

Can he?

I wonder.

Frank Woodside
www.hzmpiano.com
Posted by: PSS

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/27/07 02:30 AM

Turandot,

Give me a call, I'll make it worth your wild just so you can report back.
Posted by: turandot

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/27/07 05:19 AM

Mr. Wilson,

Thank you for your offer. I won't be calling. Today I agreed to purchase a piano that I had on a trial basis. I'm happy with it, with the shop that sold it, and with the service and warranty terms.

I would like to take the opportunity to tell you that although I have been conscripted into Mr. Bukai's army of assasins, it was without my knoweldge or consent. I too am tired of seeing my brief quote about the deafening silence trotted out every hour or so as part of Mr. Bukai's litany.

When I agreed to leave the thread, I wished Mr. Bukai well on his quest for the truth. But as another person said during the thread, just because a question is asked does not mean that it has to be answered.

If you were to look at my posts on the thread, my basic concern was Mr. Bukai's slamming of every aspect of the Chinese and Indonesian piano industry. When I responded to it, I was the only person who did. Where were all of the happy owners of Chinese made pianos? Where were the dealers like Mr. Cohen who make their living from the sale of Asian instruments and whose thread was being diverted into a quest to do justice for one high-line piano? I don't know where they were. But if someone came into my house and insulted my piano as being cheap or insulted the way I make my living as involving cheap and poorly made products and services, that person would be shown the door.

In Mr. Bukai's more recent posts, I notice now I am listed as one who has condemned you. If Mr. Bukai in fact lynches you, I suppose I will be on trial for murder as well.

Mr. Wilson. I have defended you on prior occasions. On one occasion I remarked that the Steigerman European bloodline blurb was at least as bad as your charming Ellenburg family story. On another occasion I made note of the fact that you do not slam your competitors.

In this thread I said that your Ebay profile of private sales was unusual in that it hid the identity of the item sold rather than the identity of the buyer. I also stated that Ebay is remarkably vigilant in protecting its marketplace and its members from fraud, and that the fact you had survived there all these years should not be overlooked. I have sent an Email to Ebay asking for a clarification on what information can be private in a private listing. I have not accused you of anything. In my mind it's completely plausible that you are afforded some privacy there based on the revenue source that you provide Ebay with your Ebay store and frequent use of premiere listings. I also noted that the feedback system seemed to me to be almost bulletproof. I have not heard from Ebay. I expect I will. They usualy respond in 48 to 72 hours to member questions.

My own sense of the situation is that many here despise you. If you were to be tried here, you would certainly be granted a change of venue by any competent judge. Most retailers either feel that the Internet cheapens their business, or don't have any idea of how to use it. Some are blessed with both of these deficiencies. Retailer's efforts on Ebay are pitiful. I'm sure you know that. The retailers who frequent this forum by and large don't even know how to update their own website to keep it current. Many of the distributors' efforts are laughable as well.

You sell low-cost merchandise...what Mr. Bukai would consider to be CHEAP! He is living proof that that charge alone is enough to set some people off. In addition, you cross territorial turf lines. This seems to be a vital concern to many. Your merchandise is not clearly branded as to origin of build and model differentiation. This point is trotted out as concern for the helpless consumer. But in reality, most of those asking you to reveal this want the information for their own benefit, not to save consumers. If distributors and retailers were truly concerned about consumers, the marketplace wouldn't be filled to the gills with all of the convoluted mumbo-jumbo of brand names and stencils.

You are accused of a variety of contradictory charges

1. having no merchandise and no customers

2. selling what you don't have in stock

3. selling defective returned Costco merchandise

4. selling only Ebooks

5. operating a bait and switch

6. undercutting the retail trade

7. being only a piano mover

8. selling merchandise that is not what you say it is

I'm sure there are more. The significance of all these charges to me is that nobody (at least on this forum) really has any idea what you are doing. To me that lends a certain credence to your claims that you are not going to be goaded into divulging your trade secrets.

From all of this, I feel I have no right to judge you. If I saw your ad and was troubled by the sketchy information about a piano and its origin but was interested nonetheless, I would call you. If your toll-free number with operators standing by did not answer my specific questions, I would simply decline to buy. Certainly, I have a duty to find the facts before I make a big purchase.
If you lied to me and I got something different from what I was sold, or got nothing at all, I would demand a refund from you. If that failed, I would file a Paypal claim. If I paid with my credit card, I would file a report with the credit card company. Maybe I'm naive, butI think that somewhere along the line the issue would be resolved to my satisfaction.

I would offer you a different challenge from Mr. Bukai. The Forster piano is history. I would challenge you about the future.

1. Bring some of your happy customers out of the closet. Listening to you drone on about Paypal fraud protection, Bonding, and all of that is tiresome. It's true that there aren't any unhappy customers making noise. But it's also true that you have no testimonials that can be tracked and verified. Your entire customer base is as invisible as the Ellenburg family. Let's hear from them. No offense, but listening to you and you alone becomes boring.

2. In the future get out of the stenciling business to the extent you can. Today's consumers deserve better than the Ellenburg family. We are not the wealthy dowagers who made it hard for Mr. Flacco or Mr. Cohen to sell them anything with an Asian name on the fallboard. This is 2007. We live in a multi-cultural society in an ever-shrinking world. The Chinese culture is one of the oldest and most prestigious in the world. Let's take a step in the right direction.

If you are really going to sell a Hailun piano, try to sell it as a Hailun with that name on the fallboard. I'm not blaming all this nonsense on you. But you can initiate a trend in the right direction. Put the name in Chinese characters to make it exotic if you like. If for contractual reasons you can't brand it Hailun, then either refuse to sell it or stencil it as a Wilson, not an Ellenburg, and disclose in every description of it where it was made. Put your name on it and stand by it instead of hiding behind it. If you have the ear of Mr. Chen, tell him that the American public is not as culturally bigoted as he might think.

Well, I've said my piece and I apologize if this is as long as Mr. Bukai's litany. But I feel better for having said it, and if this makes for a hung jury, so be it.
Posted by: ftp

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/27/07 08:02 AM

Turandot,

Congratulations on your purchase. You'll have to let us know soon what you bought.

There are a lot of great people on PW. Hopefully over time you will get to know them. You learn a lot about people from how they write and what they have to say. Credibility speaks for itself over time but more importantly its those that contribute to the greater good here that are the most interesting.

I hope you enjoyed the opera here of late, like Wagner, I suspect there is always more to come.
Posted by: fingers

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/27/07 09:30 AM

Turandot,

Congratulations on your new piano!

At the risk of sounding like a critic, I would like to comment on your writing style.
With respect to your above post, if you didn't list your occupation as a teacher, I would have guessed it would be that of Judge. (More Wapner than Judy) \:\)

You summarized opposing sides of the argument in a clear and detached manner, and then stated your position along with reasons to support your conclusions.

IMO, you wrote a very clear and balanced post on a heated topic. Thank you.


Regards,
fingers
Posted by: mdsdurango

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/27/07 09:57 AM

Turandot,
Very eloquently stated. I dito fingers post and will hope that you stick around.
Congratulations on your new piano.

Mike
Posted by: schwammerl

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/27/07 10:43 AM

Turandot,

Congratulations on your new piano. Please keep posting, but meanwhile do not forget to play the piano!

By the way I did not participate in the "pianosuperstore" thread you are referring to in your summary post because there is nothing I could contribute to this specific U.S. debate.
But if you ask:
 Quote:
Where were all of the happy owners of Chinese made pianos?
, well I am not afraid to tell I am very happy with my Wendl & Lung 161. But I think we all learned from this thread we have to be careful and specific if we make any statement on chinese pianos. Therefore I should say "very happy with my W&L 161 from Wendl & Lung Europe-Vienna, made in the Hailun factory China". I cannot speak for any Hailun US, Steigerman, Bernstein, Hailun Asia etc.

schwammerl.
Posted by: PSS

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/27/07 12:31 PM

 Quote:
Originally posted by turandot:
Mr. Wilson,

Thank you for your offer. I won't be calling. Today I agreed to purchase a piano that I had on a trial basis. I'm happy with it, with the shop that sold it, and with the service and warranty terms.

I would like to take the opportunity to tell you that although I have been conscripted into Mr. Bukai's army of assasins, it was without my knoweldge or consent. I too am tired of seeing my brief quote about the deafening silence trotted out every hour or so as part of Mr. Bukai's litany.

When I agreed to leave the thread, I wished Mr. Bukai well on his quest for the truth. But as another person said during the thread, just because a question is asked does not mean that it has to be answered.

If you were to look at my posts on the thread, my basic concern was Mr. Bukai's slamming of every aspect of the Chinese and Indonesian piano industry. When I responded to it, I was the only person who did. Where were all of the happy owners of Chinese made pianos? Where were the dealers like Mr. Cohen who make their living from the sale of Asian instruments and whose thread was being diverted into a quest to do justice for one high-line piano? I don't know where they were. But if someone came into my house and insulted my piano as being cheap or insulted the way I make my living as involving cheap and poorly made products and services, that person would be shown the door.

In Mr. Bukai's more recent posts, I notice now I am listed as one who has condemned you. If Mr. Bukai in fact lynches you, I suppose I will be on trial for murder as well.

Mr. Wilson. I have defended you on prior occasions. On one occasion I remarked that the Steigerman European bloodline blurb was at least as bad as your charming Ellenburg family story. On another occasion I made note of the fact that you do not slam your competitors.

In this thread I said that your Ebay profile of private sales was unusual in that it hid the identity of the item sold rather than the identity of the buyer. I also stated that Ebay is remarkably vigilant in protecting its marketplace and its members from fraud, and that the fact you had survived there all these years should not be overlooked. I have sent an Email to Ebay asking for a clarification on what information can be private in a private listing. I have not accused you of anything. In my mind it's completely plausible that you are afforded some privacy there based on the revenue source that you provide Ebay with your Ebay store and frequent use of premiere listings. I also noted that the feedback system seemed to me to be almost bulletproof. I have not heard from Ebay. I expect I will. They usualy respond in 48 to 72 hours to member questions.

My own sense of the situation is that many here despise you. If you were to be tried here, you would certainly be granted a change of venue by any competent judge. Most retailers either feel that the Internet cheapens their business, or don't have any idea of how to use it. Some are blessed with both of these deficiencies. Retailer's efforts on Ebay are pitiful. I'm sure you know that. The retailers who frequent this forum by and large don't even know how to update their own website to keep it current. Many of the distributors' efforts are laughable as well.

You sell low-cost merchandise...what Mr. Bukai would consider to be CHEAP! He is living proof that that charge alone is enough to set some people off. In addition, you cross territorial turf lines. This seems to be a vital concern to many. Your merchandise is not clearly branded as to origin of build and model differentiation. This point is trotted out as concern for the helpless consumer. But in reality, most of those asking you to reveal this want the information for their own benefit, not to save consumers. If distributors and retailers were truly concerned about consumers, the marketplace wouldn't be filled to the gills with all of the convoluted mumbo-jumbo of brand names and stencils.

You are accused of a variety of contradictory charges

1. having no merchandise and no customers

2. selling what you don't have in stock

3. selling defective returned Costco merchandise

4. selling only Ebooks

5. operating a bait and switch

6. undercutting the retail trade

7. being only a piano mover

8. selling merchandise that is not what you say it is

I'm sure there are more. The significance of all these charges to me is that nobody (at least on this forum) really has any idea what you are doing. To me that lends a certain credence to your claims that you are not going to be goaded into divulging your trade secrets.

From all of this, I feel I have no right to judge you. If I saw your ad and was troubled by the sketchy information about a piano and its origin but was interested nonetheless, I would call you. If your toll-free number with operators standing by did not answer my specific questions, I would simply decline to buy. Certainly, I have a duty to find the facts before I make a big purchase.
If you lied to me and I got something different from what I was sold, or got nothing at all, I would demand a refund from you. If that failed, I would file a Paypal claim. If I paid with my credit card, I would file a report with the credit card company. Maybe I'm naive, butI think that somewhere along the line the issue would be resolved to my satisfaction.

I would offer you a different challenge from Mr. Bukai. The Forster piano is history. I would challenge you about the future.

1. Bring some of your happy customers out of the closet. Listening to you drone on about Paypal fraud protection, Bonding, and all of that is tiresome. It's true that there aren't any unhappy customers making noise. But it's also true that you have no testimonials that can be tracked and verified. Your entire customer base is as invisible as the Ellenburg family. Let's hear from them. No offense, but listening to you and you alone becomes boring.

2. In the future get out of the stenciling business to the extent you can. Today's consumers deserve better than the Ellenburg family. We are not the wealthy dowagers who made it hard for Mr. Flacco or Mr. Cohen to sell them anything with an Asian name on the fallboard. This is 2007. We live in a multi-cultural society in an ever-shrinking world. The Chinese culture is one of the oldest and most prestigious in the world. Let's take a step in the right direction.

If you are really going to sell a Hailun piano, try to sell it as a Hailun with that name on the fallboard. I'm not blaming all this nonsense on you. But you can initiate a trend in the right direction. Put the name in Chinese characters to make it exotic if you like. If for contractual reasons you can't brand it Hailun, then either refuse to sell it or stencil it as a Wilson, not an Ellenburg, and disclose in every description of it where it was made. Put your name on it and stand by it instead of hiding behind it. If you have the ear of Mr. Chen, tell him that the American public is not as culturally bigoted as he might think.

Well, I've said my piece and I apologize if this is as long as Mr. Bukai's litany. But I feel better for having said it, and if this makes for a hung jury, so be it. [/b]
Turandot,
Thank you so much for your balanced and articulate response and post. Just as an FYI there is a forum member by the name of Speed Racer who posted here about buying a piano from us. He will be receiving his piano very shortly. Only he can tell the forum here what his experience with us has been, but I hope he would be treated with some courtesy when and if he decides to post.

I agree with your comments on some of the stenciling and hope you will stay tuned for some of the changes that are coming. Just as an FYI to the piano I was offering for you to see and try was indeed branded under the name Hailun. I can't go into details about future events, but I think it will definately be pleasing to the general public as far as what they can receive in value compared to price.

Thanks again, and congratulations on the new piano.

Sincerely,
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/27/07 03:45 PM

turandot:

Congratulations to your new piano - you must have beaten the whole market out there hands down!

Drum roll.........

Thank you also for the detailed and very valuable information for all the poor consumers and greatly misguided retailers out there -worldwide that is - swooping changes to come forward for the entire industry as of immediately.....

From now on I will only carry the following lines:

1] "Siegfried" - made solely by hand [fists?] by superior, tall and blue eyed, sword carrying Germans [blond hair a must...] with heavy set women cooking reindeer stew in enourmous outside pots....

2] "Yokoshima" - precision piano made by white haired older Japanese gentlemen displaying great wisdom and dignity, using only latest Japanese computer technology, certified to be absolutely Microsoft free....

3] "Huckleberry Finn" - 5 ton American pianos which can only be moved by at least 3 Hummers pulling them. Can double up as 'secret bomb' in case regular amunition should run out some odd place elsewhere around the world....

4] "Beijing River" - but in Chinese letters of course - made from genuine Bamboo sticks, organically grown in the Yangtse River Delta,
may or may *not* make sound according how the wind is blowing....

Let me know if and when you would like to trade up one day to any one of these above fine specimen - all being pianos fully certified to be of 100% national and cultural identity.

No more stencil-bencil..........

Norbert \:D
Posted by: turandot

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/27/07 08:57 PM

To Fathertopianist

You're right. There are many interesting people to get to know here. I have enjoyed exchanging messages with some of them, and look forward to meeting more.

About Wagner, that's a good analogy for the latest PSS thread: a libretto short on substance but long on Sturm and Drang.

To fingers and mdsdurango

Many thanks for your support.

To Terry Wilson

I look forward to seeing the coming improvements in PSS marketing

To Ori Bukai

Thanks for your kind message. If somehow in the future a piano of Chinese manufacture finds a place in your showroom, it will be an endorsement for its maker worth its weight in gold.

To Monica Kern

If anything meaningful comes from Ebay I will post it.

To Norbert

No drumroll for me. I'm a careful shopper but a poor bargainer. I actually wrote down four serial numbers of pianos I liked the first day I visited the store where I eventually bought. As you would probably guess, I played every piano in the store. (They wouldn't let me play the $50 trade-ins in the dumpster...... something about insurance) When I left, I gave the paper to the manager and asked him to figure out the best price he could give me on each of the four and to call me the next day. After he gave me the prices, I never asked him to budge off them. I was satisfied. I liked the people I was dealing with.

By the way, your advice just isn't useful. When I tried to bring prices down by simply saying I was really impressed with Steigerman premium, they brought a corkscrew and asked "What vintage?" And even though I read the biochem text (as you advised), I still can't get a date. Do you think one of those women cooking the reindeer stew would be willing....aw..never mind!

To Schwammerl

Yours is the best advice I've heard in a long time. You are absolutely right.I need to stop thinking and start playing the piano. Thank you much. I will be in touch.

To those who want pictures

I will honor your tradition and prove that I am indeed a piano buyer. I'll post later on this thread if it's still open, or open another if it's not.

Ciao
Posted by: Frank

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/27/07 09:50 PM

turandot,
Congrats and I wish you many years of musical pleasure.
I am sure, after such an enlightening journey,it is nice to now just make music. And please yourself.
I applaud you.
Many happy hours.

Frank Woodside
www.hzmpiano.com
Posted by: westland

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/27/07 10:03 PM

I've found this thread interesting, as I live in Hong Kong, and recently had my 1950's vintage August Forster rebuild up in ZhuHai by Eddy Piano here. Eddy (the owners English name) has to be the most knowledgable piano technician I have ever met. And during my visits to his factory, he gave me some insight into how China is revolutionizing piano building. It's nothing really radical, but they have aggressively adopted CNC for nearly every part that can be cost effectively made, and at a scale unmatched anywhere, including Japan and Korea (most of the machines are in Samick, Cort, etc. factories in Tianjin as I understand). Then they have quality woodworkers at a fraction of the cost of Japan, Germany etc. As far as I can see, there is nowhere where the knowledge of guys like Eddy lags their European or Japanese counterparts. Where the building differs is in innovation to keep the price affordable.

And as one post mentioned, China is in the position of Japan in the 1960s ... it doesn't have a good reputation for quality. So it is common to buy up established brands like Wendl& Lung for example. My guess is that the modern piano industry is like the watch industry. Most of the work happens in China, but final assembly and setup occurs in the home country. Part of this may be quality control, but I suspect a lot of it is just transfer pricing and bragging rights (German piano vs. Chinese). Again, as far as I can see, the Chinese piano makers have the same skills, knowledge and dedication to quality that their European or Japanese peers do; they just don't have the reputation yet.
Posted by: Mario Bruneau

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/28/07 10:42 AM

Hi Dino Flacco,

Thanks for your valuable informations. There is something wrong thought, you wrote:

 Quote:
A couple of years ago, give or take, this dealer did buy some Wendl & Lung pianos I am told but W & L is no longer distributing in the U.S. My statement concerning current distribution is accurate.
I am the distributer/retailer for Wendl&Lung in Québec - Eastern Canada. I am located near the US borders in Eastern Townships of Québec.

I already have one Mod.178 grand and another one on the way. Just came back from a trip to Vienna for a 3 weeks training with M. Peter Veletzky and M. Sibin Zlatkovic. Those people are soo nice and passionate of what they do. All the staff at Wendl&Lung are real musicians and artists. It was the first time in my 30 years career as piano tech-tuner that I meet people with this profile. I was used to "businessman". So refreshing!
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/28/07 01:42 PM

 Quote:
I am the distributer/retailer for Wendl&Lung in Québec - Eastern Canada. I am located near the US borders in Eastern Townships of Québec.

I already have one Mod.178 grand and another one on the way.
How is this posssible?

As Dino pointed out, there is a firm agreement in place that Wendl&Lung pianos are not to be marketed or sold anywhere in North America.

And Steigerman Premium pianos, specially built to our very own specifications for this market by the way - *not* in Europe.

Of course, one could always rent a warehouse near Vienna and get going there.....

By the way, I have never heard of a *distributor* who starts with one single piano.

You're sure you're not "distributing" this piano just to yourself?

Norbert
Posted by: Jazzmandave

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/28/07 01:56 PM

Posted by: JohnEB

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/28/07 05:10 PM

Some time ago in this thread Norbert asked Schwammerl why he was getting so exercised about Hailun/Steigerman/W&L when he was so happy with his W&L. While I can't answer for Schwammerl, I can answer on my behalf, as I'm in the same position. I bought a W&L in the full knowledge it's made in China (it has Ningbo in big letters on the frame) and I'm very happy with it almost a year later.

However when I realised that (probably) the same piano is sold under the name Hailun and another very similar piano (possibly the same design but with different action) I did fell a little cheated. It shook my faith in what I'd understood the relationship between W&L and Hailun to be, and made me think that the great, cheap piano I'd bought wasn't quite so special.

Now I've got over all that (after playing the piano, a lot) but I would still like to understand the relationship between W&L and Steigerman Premium to work out if they're really the same or not.

But I can't say I'm too exercised about it - I'm more interested in playing my lovely W&L/Hailun 161 grand.
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/28/07 05:42 PM

 Quote:
But I can't say I'm too exercised about it - I'm more interested in playing my lovely W&L/Hailun 161 grand.
Which is what it's really all about.

Many people here don't understand - and I don't really blame them - that making a product and marketing it,especially around the world,are 2 different things.

I don't know about Wendl & Lung in Vienna, but Canadian based Steigerman Music Corp has been a distributor of pianos on this continent for a very long time.

They were the ones first bringing Yamaha pianos first to Canada [in the early 60's I believe...] at a time nobody knew of Yamaha or wanted to see their name on a piano.

Call it what you will, but the Loewen family [owners] certainly always had a nose for what's moving and shaking.

Or coming up..... ;\)

Hailun may make the most wonderful piano in the world - but they need someone help them to bring it to market.

If one day they will be big enough to run the whole show by themselves, so be it.

Yamaha did the same, but their pianos didn't stay at the $ 200 for new uprights at the time they were simply called 'Steigerman' back in the 60's.

Norbert
Posted by: weazer

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/28/07 06:06 PM

So I heard that the president of Hailun USA (Theresa Perry) is the wife of the CEO of Pearl River. How interesting is that?
Posted by: turandot

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/28/07 06:09 PM

from Norbert

 Quote:
Hailun may make the most wonderful piano in the world - but they need someone help them to bring it to market.

If one day they will be big enough to run the whole show by themselves, so be it.

Yamaha did the same, but their pianos didn't stay at the $ 200 for new uprights at the time they were simply called 'Steigerman' back in the 60's
Norbert,

Could you elaborate on the help that a distributor such as Steigerman would provide to a factory such as Hailun in bringing its products to market? I'm not trying to be cute with this question. I think it would be very enlightening to know. I think I understand the W&L connection to be more a piano design collaboration than a simple distribution channel. What is the Steigerman expertise that Hailun profits from?

Also, I think you're saying from the Yamaha example that when Hailun sells its porducts through a distribution channel like Steigerman the consumer will pay less. In a normal marketing chain, the price goes up with each entity that is added between maker and final consumer. How does the consumer save here?

Again, I'm not trying to be cute. I'd like to have a better understanding.
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/28/07 09:30 PM

Turandot:

Before I entered the piano business I had very little understanding myself of how the market works - or for that matter anything else in business.

Please let me try to answer some of your questions here to the very best of my since additionally 'learned' knowledge though I certainly shall make no attempt to be a lecturer of economics.... ;\)

Distribution, as anybody in business knows, has long become a very important aspect of selling all kinds of goods, especially worldwide, something I learned in a rather shocking way as young kid when growing up in Germany.

At that time my father worked for Siemens, a very respected German company. As an employee, my dad was able to get all our home appliances considerably cheaper by buying "in house" - as a result, all our radios,TV's washing machines,etc were of the "Siemens" brand.

One day when our TV needed some fixing, a repair Van pulled up with the sign "Sony Reparaturen" on it.

To my dad's and my own's disbelief [my dad worked mostly on the company's large turbines and big stuff division...] - we learned at that time that the entire inside of the "Siemens" TV had actually been manufactured by Sony in Japan, a company with far greater home electronics market penetration than Siemens ever had.

German consumers, always preferring to buy their own home made stuff, of course now got solidly *cheated*, as the goods they were buying had actually been manufactered by someone else in Japan.....

Or had they?

It's the first time I learned about the intricate, intermixed world of business between manufacturer and distributors - Sony apparently in return acting as a 'distributor' for Siemens, selling Siemens turbines to some of their own customers far East.....

For outsiders, Sony and Siemens may have looked like competitors in the market - but in reality they had long become allies resulting in selling more stuff as a combined market force!

Enter Hailun and the piano business.
[and the rest of the world if you will... ;\) ]

Companies, especially new ones like Hailun specializing mainly in manufacturing, often depend on distributors with large established market penetration, this in order to get their product happening in a rather fast way - certainly much quicker than they could ever have done it all on their own.

Steigerman, as the previous distributors for a variety of pianos including Yamaha, Samick and several other makers, happens to be such company.

Adding important propietory features to the piano itself - this in addition to a better known private label name, at least in our hemisphere [nobody is denying it *is*] - the resulting larger orders for factory result not only in a much wider market spread, but also translate into much more aggressive investment opportunities and R&D,etc for the mother company itself.

Essentially and often misunderstood, this not only lowers the cost of manufacturing for the factory itself - but also typically affects actually lower price levels for consumers in the end. [called 'economics of scale'...]

This is exactly, what Steigerman Music Corp or Wendl & Lung *can* and *are* doing for Hailun - to specifically answer your question.

Were this not the case, these companies would never even dream to work together on the scale they are now.

For consumers in general and high end products aside, the essential question wether or not to buy a product on the market today, will simply depend on what the product offers itself in terms of quality and price.

Far less appear to be interested to analyse detail corporate structures and/or the interwovenness of international business today.

In case of doubt, one can simply always buy something entirely different,however such product makes sense to you - being an individual and seeing things on an individual basis.

For example something such as a hopelessly overpriced, but otherwise non-chalant, non-distinguishable, virtually everyday-type of product,pricing itself primarily on name recognition only - of course nicely manufactured and distributed by same, identical company of original manufacture.... :p

Rest assured, the owner/CEO or chairman will insist to live in utter, opulent and almost unimaginable luxury as well.

Of course at - *your* expense......

Norbert \:D
Posted by: schwammerl

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/01/07 04:26 AM

From Norbert:
 Quote:
Many people here don't understand - and I don't really blame them - that making a product and marketing it,especially around the world,are 2 different things.
and:
 Quote:
Distribution, as anybody in business knows, has long become a very important aspect of selling all kinds of goods, especially worldwide, something I learned in a rather shocking way as young kid when growing up in Germany.
and:
 Quote:
Companies, especially new ones like Hailun specializing mainly in manufacturing, often depend on distributors with large established market penetration, this in order to get their product happening in a rather fast way - certainly much quicker than they could ever have done it all on their own.
First of all I am confident that many people on this forum do understand the mechanics of marketing channels, that they are not necessarily shocked by partnerships, parts exchanges etc. and that many realise that setting up a world-wide marketing channel for any product or service is perhaps one of the most difficult and expensive exercises for any business; for many businesses marketing expenses largely exceed R&D, development and production costs.
Typically a company will have to decide about the "level-type" of distribution channel (and the number of intermediates within each channel):
- it could be a zero-level channel where the manufacturer is selling directly to the consumer; e.g. Samsonite Corp. has in major cities of the world own Samsonite shops (owning the shop and selling directly to the enduser), or as far as these or owned by S&S, Steinway has shops like Steinway Berlin or London;
- it could be a one-level channel, where the manufacturer is selling through various retailers;
- or a two-level channel with as intermediates wholesalers = distributors (either on a exclusive or selective basis) and retailers. An example of a wholesaler/distributor in the piano business would be Geneva Int'l for Petrof in North America (non exclusive because they also carry other brands form other manufacturers like Nordiska)
Choices have to be made on the basis of economic criteria, control criteria and adaptive criteria (commitments made by the various intermediates invariably lead to a decrease in the producer's ability to respond to a changing marketplace).

But this is not a marketing forum. Anyone wishing to more about the subject might e.g. by a book like "Marketing Management" by Philip Kotler (Prentice_Hall International, Inc.) and read chapter 20.

This is even not what it is all about. In this Hailun example there is not just a straight two-level distribution channel we are talking about. There is the classic model with Hailun U.S. as the wholesaler/distributor and the network of dealers they are now trying to set up in the U.S.. But Hailun also has other channel types where "intermediates" like W&L or Steigerman brand/label the products differently and make specific claims about parts used (hammers, actions, soundboards) or Q.C. prep., voicing or cabinet finishing details. Then I find it legimitate[/b] that consumers on this forum start asking questions like "are all these products the same or not?"
If today[/b] e.g. the Steigerman Premium line grands would get a ranking in L. Fine's book (assuming we all agree with the validity of those rankings) as a tier X and one would ask can I extrapolate that to a Hailun or W&L grand of the same size, I would say, today[/b] no you cannot. Perhaps in the future when many owners have shared their experiences, members who have testdriven these side by site have published their findings we might say something sensible about this. For the time being every potential buyer will have to judge these instruments on their own merrits, and - as a personal view - not forget to put the quality of a specific dealer into the balance; for me a pîano is only as good as the dealer is.

From JohnEB:
 Quote:
Some time ago in this thread Norbert asked Schwammerl why he was getting so exercised about Hailun/Steigerman/W&L when he was so happy with his W&L.
In fact I am not exercised about it. It is just when I read statements that to me look like over- simplifications or fast extrapolations I jump on it. No hidden agenda at all, as I was suspected one day - when at that time just merely looking at a W&L and still owning a Boston upright -, just sharing my views. If today someone would open a thread that starts like "Hailun HG161 - any good?", I will not[/b] reply "I own a W&L 161 and am very satisfied because of....; so you could not go wrong". That is an extrapolation I am not entitled to make today.

schwammerl.
Posted by: Mario Bruneau

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/01/07 04:08 PM

Dino wrote:
 Quote:
In addition to the exclusivity on Renner hammers combined with the normal factory action, Steigerman also has an exclusive in the North American market on:

• “Schwaiger” produced soundboards for both vertical and grand pianos.

• “Bosendorfer Frame Color” for use in North America on both vertical and grand pianos.
So then no one can sell Bosendorfer in North America?

Dino wrote:
 Quote:
Terry Wilson was correct in saying that the Hailun pianos are “very impressive”. I know Mr. Hailun Chen very well and he is committed to producing the best pianos to come from China. He has gone to great lengths to insure that his design and production is top-quality by employing engineers and technicians such as:

• George “Frank” Emerson – Formerly of Mason & Hamlin and Baldwin is the factory’s Chief Designer.
• Zlatkovic Sibin - From Europe who brings his experience with Bosendorfer into the factory is in charge of tuning and voicing in the factory.
• Peter Veletzky – From the Wendl & Lung family in Austria is the factory’s Senior Technical advisor.
• Ema Shigeru – Brings manufacturing expertise from his 30 years at Kawai.
Actually Dino, it's rather the other way around:

Sibin Zlatkovic is the voicing and prep specialist of Wendl&Lung
Peter Veletzy is the piano designer of Wendl&Lung

Those two gentlemen are not employed by M. Chen, it is rather the opposite i.e. people at Wendl&Lung do business with M. Chen and his manufacturing facilities to make/build their pianos. They have a partnership.

Question here:

Dino, please tell me who is the piano designer of Steigerman?

Dino wrote:
 Quote:
The only pianos you will see from the Hailun factory in North America currently will be either from Hailun distribution or from Steigerman.
Here is a picture of the first Wendl&Lung in Canada. I have it here in Magog, Québec. Notice the Bosendorfer plate colour too.


Mario wrote:
 Quote:
I am the distributer/retailer for Wendl&Lung in Québec - Eastern Canada. I am located near the US borders in Eastern Townships of Québec.

I already have one Mod.178 grand and another one on the way.
Norbert wrote:
 Quote:
How is this posssible?

As Dino pointed out, there is a firm agreement in place that Wendl&Lung pianos are not to be marketed or sold anywhere in North America.
Apparently no!

Norbert wrote:
 Quote:
By the way, I have never heard of a *distributor* who starts with one single piano.
I Just came back from a master-training in voicing and piano prep at Wendl&Lung in Vienna. At Wendl&Lung they make sure with whom they deal with. They wont send pianos to plain businessman but rather to thru collaborators who can give justice to their pianos with good prep and service to buyers. At Wendl&Lung, they make things differently and this is what attracked me in the first place when I meet them at the 2006 Frankfurt MusikMesse. People at Wendl&Lung dont correspond to the profile one is used in the piano business.

They have given me the task of finding the “other” collaborators all over Québec Eastern Canada so that is why I used the term “distributer”. If you like Norbert, I can change that to “dealer”. Whatever suit you. ;\) But please give me a break, I must start somewhere! I’m just beginning in piano retail business. Piano tech-tuner for 30 years but never took a business in piano retail.

Norbert wrote:
 Quote:
You're sure you're not "distributing" this piano just to yourself?
Huh… I already own and play a 1893 Bluthner 7’

Then JohnEB wrote:
 Quote:
However when I realised that (probably) the same piano is sold under the name Hailun and another very similar piano (possibly the same design but with different action) I did fell a little cheated. It shook my faith in what I'd understood the relationship between W&L and Hailun to be, and made me think that the great, cheap piano I'd bought wasn't quite so special.
Maybe not “so special” anymore but still a great musical instrument and a great buy.

JohnEB wrote:
 Quote:
Now I've got over all that (after playing the piano, a lot) but I would still like to understand the relationship between W&L and Steigerman Premium to work out if they're really the same or not.
The story I have is this one.

Ningbo Hailun musical instruments used NOT to make complete pianos and where focusing solely on the production of piano parts for numerous famous piano names. Then came the meeting between M. Hailun Chen and the people from Wendl&Lung Vienna i.e. Peter Veletzky, Ernest Bittner, Lin Bai (whose uncle introduced M. Hailun Chen) and Sibin Zlatkovic. From that meeting, M. Chen decided to partneship with Wendl&Lung to build pianos for the first time. It was a mutual agreement.

After this, M. Chen had to invest a BIG amount of money to design and build the High Technology Machines needed to make the Wendl&Lung pianos. Following this pressure, M. Chen decided to market some Wendl&Lung pianos under his own name “Hailun piano”. Furthermore, M. Chen could not pass away the opportunity to “expand” his market with the Steigerman Premiums “orders”

All this might sound confusing for the end buyer but with time, this rather delicate and confusing situation will get “clarified”.

Turandot wrote:
 Quote:
Could you elaborate on the help that a distributor such as Steigerman would provide to a factory such as Hailun in bringing its products to market? I'm not trying to be cute with this question. I think it would be very enlightening to know. I think I understand the W&L connection to be more a piano design collaboration than a simple distribution channel. What is the Steigerman expertise that Hailun profits from?
Steigerman is definitely helping Hailun to sell more pianos. And you’re right that the collaboration between Hailun and Wendl&Lung is on an equal basis. It is the Wendl&Lung team that made possible the production of pianos by the Ningbo Hailun Musical Instrument Company. Like you, I would also like to know the Steigerman expertise in piano design. Did Steigerman designed their premium pianos?

But all this is out of topic of this tread. So people just make sure you try as much piano/make as possible before making your final decision. Remember to listen with you heart and soul, not with your head or mind.
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/01/07 05:52 PM

Mario:

You will very soon contacted by factory to make a retraction/correction of introducing yourself as a bona fide distributor of Wendl & Lung pianos within North America/Canada.

There a clear contracts written and signed to this effect and I am sorry if you have been led to believe otherwise.

Wendl&Lung Pianos, made also by Hailun, are to be distributed on the European continent only - they may have other features or elements of design of their own.

Dino is right now in China and will have this matter resolved as we speak.

I can't speak for Wendl & Lung, but the Steigerman Premium line of piano has primarily been designed by George F. Emerson, previous designer for the Mason Hamlin line of pianos.

Steigerman has extensively consulted with Mr.Emerson in the past and is consulting now in regards to some of the new models coming out in near future.

Certain upgraded and exclusive features of pianos built by Hailun are only available on Steigerman pianos, such as Renner hammers for example, a type of hammer we found quite crucial in tone enhancement on certain models.

Thank you for your enthusiasm for Hailun built pianos - you're right pointing them out to be among the very best built and best sounding Chinese pianos on the market today!

Norbert
Posted by: Frank

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/01/07 11:32 PM

I wonder what is really going to happen when Hailun US is in force. After all, they are the builders.
I have the contract...
no, I do..
My plate colour...
no, Mine...

Inquiring minds.. (sorry Jolly, your line)


Frank Woodside
www.hzmpiano.com
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/02/07 12:45 AM

Frank:

You love this subject, don't you?

Do you really think it makes your line of Chinese built "Heintzman" pianos sell any better by stirring the pot each time this kind of discussion comes up?

Trying to create a sense of 'confusion' - when there clearly isn't any?

Insider tip:

"Have whoever builds,ownes,operates or distributes "Heintzman" pianos
- or is it also "Gerhard Heintzman" now? \:\( web page - build a better piano than Hailun presently does" - by *whatever* name.

Customers and piano shoppers will surely be able to take quickly note of that.....

Norbert \:o
Posted by: turandot

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/02/07 04:03 AM

This is great![/b]

from Wzkit
 Quote:
I played both the Hailun and Wendl & Lung side by side in the same showroom, and to the best of my ability, I could discern no noticeable difference in performance between the two. Apart from the name on the fallboard, both pianos were basically identical in touch and tone. Neither were the price differences significant.......The dealer in question was not in the States, but here in tiny Singapore.
from Norbert
 Quote:
Wendl&Lung Pianos, made also by Hailun, are to be distributed on the European continent only
(Apparently tiny Singapore has been annexed by Europe.)

**************

from Dino Flacca
 Quote:
In addition to the exclusivity on Renner hammers combined with the normal factory action, Steigerman also has an exclusive in the North American market on:.....
• “Bosendorfer Frame Color” for use in North America on both vertical and grand pianos.
from Mario Bruneau
 Quote:
So then no one can sell Bosendorfer in North America?
********************

from Steigerman Music website
 Quote:
So Steigerman has gone to great lengths to build an exceptionally responsive instrument. Hammers, action mechanism, soundboard and strings have all been carefully engineered to maximize performance, without compromising Steigerman's ongoing commitment to affordability.
from Dino Flacco
 Quote:
Steigerman paid the Renner Company in Germany a great deal of money to travel to Vienna, Austria to measure all three grands for action production....
I can’t speak for all of Wendl & Lung’s features but the initial scale and design of the pianos are the same. We were allowed to use pianos in their Austrian showroom for designing the Renner action models we produce.
*****************

from Tery Wilson
 Quote:
I spent a lot of time in the Hailun booth at NAMM, and I can tell you that this is a very impressive piano. I was able to meet Hailun C. as well as their management, and I think is definately a piano you will want to try out.
from Axtremus
 Quote:
There is no person named "Mr. Hailun" running the Hailun piano factory in Ningbo. (Dino can verify.)
****************

from Mario Bruneau
 Quote:
I am the distributer/retailer for Wendl&Lung in Québec - Eastern Canada. I am located near the US borders in Eastern Townships of Québec.......I Just came back from a master-training in voicing and piano prep at Wendl&Lung in Vienna. At Wendl&Lung they make sure with whom they deal with. They wont send pianos to plain businessman...
from Norbert
 Quote:
Mario:

You will very soon contacted by factory to make a retraction/correction of introducing yourself as a bona fide distributor of Wendl & Lung pianos within North America/Canada.

There a clear contracts written and signed to this effect and I am sorry if you have been led to believe otherwise.
******************

from Turandot
 Quote:
Wendl and Lung is involved in the design of some Hailun products. Their arrangement with Hailun seems to be in the nature of a partnership. Wendl and Lung Hailun products are marketed in Europe after passing through Vienna for a final quality control check. Wendl and Lung pianos are also offered in Japan, Singapore and other Asian countries. Presumably these pianos do not pass through Vienna. Wendl and Lung pianos are available in eastern Canada. Wendl and Lung pianos were shipped to Pianoforte in Chicago and available there a while ago, although possibly not now.
from Norbert
 Quote:

Wendl&Lung Pianos, made also by Hailun, are to be distributed on the European continent only ........

I don't think statements by a distributor of any one manufacturer make sense to be counter-checked for consistency by those made by others on different continents.
*****************

from Terry Wilson
 Quote:
I am happy to annouce that we will be introducing a new line of pianos made in the Hailun factory very soon that I think you will be interested in.
from Frank
 Quote:
I wonder what is really going to happen when Hailun US is in force. After all, they are the builders.
I have the contract...
no, I do..
My plate colour...
no, Mine...
and finally from Norbert
 Quote:
Frank: You love this subject, don't you?......Trying to create a sense of 'confusion' - when there clearly isn't any?
Posted by: ASOP

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/02/07 06:57 AM

Turandot-the only agenda here not clear is yours.
Posted by: ASOP

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/02/07 07:56 AM

Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/02/07 12:33 PM

Turandot:

Can I ask you a personal question,

"Do you have a life?"

Norbert :rolleyes:
Posted by: Margaret M

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/02/07 01:16 PM

Aw, come on, Norbert,

Which of us that hangs out on the forum obsessing about pianos has a life????

Margaret
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/02/07 02:22 PM

It's not a matter of 'obsessing about pianos' when pianos and companies are being discussed here for consumers to know exactly what's going on.

There are certain individuals here who clearly have a vested interest in spewing false information or controversies of sorts:

- tell me why someone relatively new here with few posts to boot, should suddenly be so interested to write long and multi-paragraph posts about distribution of Hailun made pianos in North America and Europe, their different territories,their individual specs, etc.

If such person is not satisfied with what a particular piano offers in terms of any of that - he simply doesn't have to buy it.

Is is not perhaps a little particular that tunadot, who claims to have long bought a different piano for himself - never telling *what* exactly, mind you - keeps digging in this subject here, being of little interest to the average consumer, while showing clear enjoyment and glee about a sense of controversy he has created here?

It's become my conviction - and it's quite evident if you read his various posts here - that the 'obesession' shown by certain people to write so extensively on a subject so far removed from their own actual life, - is simply done to create confusion and/or controversy about a competitor out there - plain and simple.

Hailun company,which is presently making a considerable impact on the market, becoming most likely one of the most important players of new pianos coming from China, will soon come to make a statement.

Warning: there will be a few red faces thereafter.....

End of 'obsession'

Norbert \:o
Posted by: Margaret M

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/02/07 02:42 PM

Norbert,

All that may be true, but Turandot is an ordinary piano buyer from California, not a dealer from Europe or Canada. I don't understand why you say *he* needs to get a life! He's just researching pianos (as the rest of us have tied to do), and pointing out rather clearly (in my view) all of the bizarre confusion a consumer is likely to face.

It's difficult to navigate in this market, and difficult to make a purchase & feel comfortable, especially if one doesn't have tens of thousands of dollars to buy a Tier 1 piano. Why the hositility to him? These flame wars are entertaining, but not all that constructive, I don't think, and at least his posts clearly show all of the conflicting claims and counterclaims. We in the buying public at least can see who's saying what & must make assessments as to who to believe. His posts help with that, I think, and he, like everyone else who posts, gives enough information that his stuff, too, can be assessed.

Margaret
Posted by: Margaret M

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/02/07 03:01 PM

I see you edited the part about Europe & Canada.

Turandot posted pix of his new piano & said what it was on a different thread a couple of days ago.

Pix of new piano

Perhaps the "obsession" comes for those of us who read the board for weeks or months, shopped at many dealers, and read much confusing information. Before I spent thousands of my hard-earned money on a piano, I did become obsessed, and I did have a bad experiences with a ("highly regarded") dealer in my area badmouthing other dealers and giving me clearly false information.

These flame wars just show me that it can happen to anyone \:D

The funny part is that as far as I can tell, you & turandot *agree* that Chinese pianos have arrived---

Margaret
Posted by: Frank

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/02/07 03:06 PM

turandot not only told the forum what he purchased, he has posted pics of his new Nordiska 126.
He also seems to have researched to know exactly what he purchased.

Enjoy it turnadot.

Frank Woodside
www.hzmpiano.com
Posted by: FogVilleLad

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/02/07 03:29 PM

And considering that Norbert had to disciplined, to eliminate his blatantly self promoting, thread highjacking infomercials, his questioning Turnadot's motive is not entirely devoid of humor.
Posted by: turandot

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/02/07 07:46 PM

Hello Norbert

I will not respond to your personal comments. I don't take myself or my opinions seriously enough to get worked up about it. That said, I must admit that I take you and your opinions no more seriously than my own. I hope that's fair enough.

As to "glee" over creating a controversy, I did not create the controversy. Nor do I feel any glee about it. I have to admit that Frank's post about who would get which color, which contract etc. seemed hilarious to me. It conjured up an image in my mind of all the participants fighting over who would get the Queen Anne leg, who would get the Renner hammer, who would get the full Renner etc. But that was just a funny mental image, nothing more.

I think you know I have no agenda. I once sent you an E-mail asking for a point of information. I signed my real name. My E-mail address is also my name. I wasn't hiding then. I'm not now. I thought you sent me a cordial reply. In any case I didn't sense any hostility.

If you lived locally, I would offer to buy you a beer after work. It's a gorgeous day here in Southern California. I think a few minutes shared with 2 cold ones on a beautiful late afternoon would dispel your notions about my secret agenda. I think sometimes electronic communications in and of themselves give people a false picture of what another person is like. Maybe that's what's happened here.

Since you are too far away to make my offer meaningful, I will have one myself and offer a toast to you, Hailun, Steigerman, Wendl and Lung, Mr. Chen, Mr. Bruneau, Mr. Flacco, Mr. Wilson and everyone else in the little theater piece that has unfolded in this thread.

Here's to you, no hard feelings, and I will e-mail some pictures of my piano to you personally.

All the best
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 03/02/07 08:01 PM

T - appreciated, although I don't remember you mailing me.

I appreciate your reconciliatory tone - responding gladly in return!

Things here get sometimes misunderstood when writing [or reading... ;\) ] -
- people who know me however, know that I am very sincere in my expressed opinions including the fact that I have personally worked very hard to get a certain edge with the pianos we have chose for our own, highly valued clientile.

Rest assured, starting from scratch in one of the most competitive regions anywhere - it's never been exactly a cake walk...

Selecting hopefully superior pianos in each and every price range on the market has become serious buisness for us and judging by the success we have had - including the many good reports about our chosen makes by people right here on the Forum - we couldn't have been too far off.

T - sorry about the piano you had indeed bought, I did miss it - my mistake - full apology offered! \:\(

FogVilleLad said:

 Quote:
And considering that Norbert had to disciplined, to eliminate his blatantly self promoting, thread highjacking infomercials, his questioning Turnadot's motive is not entirely devoid of humor.
I leave the writer of this rather ridiculous statement in his innocent belief if that's what gives him comfort in life or makes him feel any better.

Hailun pianos, be they of the Wendl&Lung [Europe] or Steigerman Premium [North America] variety - including any of the other makes we happen to represent - don't need 'Norbert'.

They'll all be perfectly able to stand on their own.

Norbert \:o
Posted by: thx1138

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/18/09 01:52 AM

 Quote:
Originally posted by schwammerl:
Really is there no Mr Hailun?

Then Wendl & Lung must be lieing when showing pictures of Mr Chen Hailun ( click Wendl & Lung History - 1990:4th picture form right): http://www.wendl-lung.com/Website/English/fs_wendllung.htm

Or the Swiss W&L distrubutor must then be wrong also (3rd and 4th picture): http://www.scanavini.ch/galerie.htm

schwammerl. [/b]
There is no Mr. Hailun. Hai Lun is his given name.

His family name is Chen. There is a Mr. Chen.

In Western terms he might be "Mr. Hai Lun Chen".

In China he is "Chen Hai Lun" or "Chen Xian Sheng (= Mr.).

Got it?
Posted by: swampwiz

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/18/09 02:44 AM

 Quote:
Originally posted by Norbert:

The Stei 123 upright, a piano which actually sounds better than many 52" uprights I have ever played before, has become a great success for us.

As a result of its truly amazing tonal volume and richness of sound - and with the new Stei 125 just coming onto market - we have discontinued to offer anymore any grands under minimal size of 5'2".

Norbert [/b]
Not even the Brodmann CE 148?
Posted by: Norbert

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 02/18/09 07:14 PM

The top uprights we have been seeing in recent times are the 50" Hailun H5 and the 49" Brodmann 123M.

The latter was just purchase by a local peformance venue whose pleayers were taken by its even and resonnant tone.

Intererstingly enough, none of them had either heard the name or played one before....

The Hailun H5' are being picked by anybody from the Lang Langs to the Jerry Lewises.

Or all those with aspirations becoming one...

Norbert ;\)
Posted by: Vigelic

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 05/31/09 01:40 AM

Is it advisable to buy a Hailun upright? (125 cm)

I'm so confused. Especially about the durability of one... Is it true that a Hailun is really that good?

I'm new to playing the piano and can't really tell the difference in the sounds..
Posted by: Vigelic

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 05/31/09 01:44 AM

and i'm in singapore, from the same place as wzkit and TTT, looking at the same shop that has Hailun and W&L side by side.

Any help please?
Posted by: turandot

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 05/31/09 02:45 AM

Vigelic,

This is a really old thread. It brings back memories. I doubt if Wzkit ever bought one, but I think you should send him a PM to get his advice. It's probably a good idea to check into the Adult Beginner in Singapore thread as well. You'll get lots of local opinions from folks like Wzkit, Digitus, and Snoopycar.. Ask what people in Singapore think of the pianos and the dealer who sells them. Here's a link.

http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/topics/82991/2.html

Hailun has been well-received in the US market. We also have a few W&L dealers now as well. The piano make a very strong first impression. But it's more important for you to get a sense of how the pianos are holding up in your climate and how the dealer's prep and service has been.

If I were you, I would ask the dealer for a referral to one or more of his customers who bought a Hailun-built piano two or three years ago. If you could make arrangements to compare one that's been in the field for that amount of time to one in the showroom, it would be helpful. If that checks out and you like the tone and touch, why not?
Posted by: Vigelic

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 06/02/09 12:23 AM

alright, i've gone ahead with the purchase of a hailun 125 (HL 125). they'll install a heater for me.

what's the heater for? =\

i hope i dont regret this =\
Posted by: turandot

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 06/02/09 01:06 AM

Now wait a minute, Vigelic! I told you to check out how they were holding up in your climate and to get local opinions of the piano and the dealer. I didn't tell you to buy one! grin

Anyway, congratulations. I don't think what you bought is really a heater. It's probably something to keep the moisture content of the structural wood stable.
Posted by: Digitus

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 06/02/09 02:04 AM

Originally Posted By: Vigelic
alright, i've gone ahead with the purchase of a hailun 125 (HL 125). they'll install a heater for me.

what's the heater for? =\

i hope i dont regret this =\


Hi Vigelic,

The heater bar dehumidifies the interior of the case to prevent action parts from swelling and seizing. If the piano is going to be located in a non-air-conditioned room you must leave that heater bar on 24x7. If you live in a particularly humid part of Singapore then you really should consider locating the piano in a room that can be air-conditioned as and when needed. The keys are outside the case and can absorb too much moisture from overly humid environments. If they swell too much they will stick.

If the piano is located in a room for which you can keep the RH between 40% to 60% (on average) then you must not turn on the heater bar!

Coincidentally I was in the Hailun dealer's showroom in Singapore last week. I played two HL125's -- the one in the showroom and one fresh out of the crate in their warehouse/workshop a few doors down from the showroom.

The HL125 on the showroom floor was out of tune and out of regulation. The touch was uneven, with some keys having a lot of resistance before let-off. Overall the action felt sluggish and spongy. I asked why this is so and I was told that "they all become like that after a few years". Oh dear. Not a good answer. Why can't they just say that they haven't bothered to tune and regulate their showroom unit properly?

The HL125 fresh out of the crate was a different proposition. It is clear that the action was designed to have a somewhat meaty feel, which I like personally.

Tonally the HL125 was not bad, particularly for an instrument that costs SGD3,600. You obviously don't get the last word in quality finishing. For example, the sides of the keys really could have done with some sanding after having been cut apart.

I think that with decent prep work by a competent tech the HL125 could be a good performer in that price range. The question is whether the prep work will be done at all, in order to get the HL125 performing at its best. Although the piano seems to be in OK shape fresh out of the crate it really needs prep before delivery. But most piano dealers in Singapore don't, even for pianos costing a lot more.
Posted by: Vigelic

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 06/02/09 11:34 PM

lols. i'm guessing the one a few doors down should be mine..? i've taken note of that serial number anyway so ya...

so.. do i switch the heater off everytime that i wanna switch on the air con?

and hmm.. i agree with you that the one in the room a few doors down felt wayyyy better than the one on the showroom floor.. and he says he will be delivering that one to me anyway so it should be ok i guess?

not too sure about what's gonna happen a few years down.. i'm just crossing my fingers and hoping for the best?
Posted by: Digitus

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 06/03/09 12:07 AM

I guess it depends on how often you use the air-con. If you can keep the RH in the room between 40-60% all day long you won't have to use the heater bar at all. My Sauter Omega is located in my living room. The air-con is turned on as and when needed for personal comfort or when the RH in the room creeps up towards the mid-60's. There are no heater bars installed in the piano, and there never will be if I can avoid it. One thing: if the volume of the room is large and the doors and windows are never open for long, it is is MUCH easier to maintain RH within safe levels than in a small room. For example, it is very easy for me to keep the RH down to safe levels, whereas Wzkit has his Sauter Delta in his bedroom (in an HDB flat) and he has his air-con AND dehumidifier turned on 24x7 and still struggles to keep the RH down to about 60%.

As for your coming HL125, I could be wrong, but my guess is that the only prep that Piano Master will do on your piano is to tune it and wipe it down. The factory regulation and voicing should be OK to start with, at least for the initial 1+ year settling in period. But after that you may want to pay the $ to do a complete regulation and voicing. Or you can try one or two other independent techs (PM me or Wzkit for suggestions when you need one). These same resources can be used to help look after the piano down the road, so don't worry about the future.

Of course, only you can decide whether or not to pay money to wring the last ounce of performance out of what is at the bottom line a fairly inexpensive piano.

One last thing about RH and pianos in Singapore. The RH can vary tremendously across Singapore. Some areas are very humid all year round. Even so-called 'tropicalised' pianos will not survive RH that stays high all year round (where 'high' depends on the piano). Don't listen to people who say that just leaving the heater bar on 24x7 will do, because it really depends on where you live and how much control you have over the piano's micro-climate. Having said that, pianos are also surprisingly hardy things. Even Fazioli is happy to honour its warranty if the piano is located in a 70%RH environment and fitted with a Dampp-Chaser or equivalent.

Enjoy your new piano! smile
Posted by: Mr_Walkaway

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 06/03/09 12:27 PM

The local Yamaha dealer keeps some of the Hailun grands in stock, and if the verticals are anywhere near the quality of the grands, then it should end up being a great piano for you. My wife and I have actually seriously considered one of the 178's now for a couple years, and even thought about a 198. I wouldn't say they're as good as a Yamaha or Kawai, but after those two (and out of what I've played), Hailuns seem to be about the best thing coming out of Asia right now.
Posted by: Vigelic

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 06/05/09 02:18 PM

I've uploaded my pics on the other thread at http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/topics/1211503 ... lols.
Posted by: froufrou06

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 07/19/11 09:49 PM

Hey guys...I've been a lurking on these forums for the longest time but have finally decided to sign up as a user cos there are some burning questions I really wanted to ask some of you, especially people like Wzkit/Digitus/Snoopycar. Some of them have already probably been done to death before but I hope you don't mind me asking again ( if I can say, for the love of music lol!).

Btw, I'm from Singapore too. smile

Just a bit of background on myself, I picked up piano again recently (i passed my grade 8 long ago when i was in my late teens but stopped due to uni studies and work) but started learning again(it's weird one starts to appreciate classical music again with age!) with a view to taking my diploma in a couple of years time. I am playing on a 20+ yr old Schimmel upright but it's always been my lifelong ambition to own and play on a grand.

So I've been looking around for a grand piano around the range of 30+k at the usual places like Robert, Chiu, Emmanuel, Yamaha, Piano Master....I was initially thinking of getting a 2nd hand but after a long deliberation, I think a budget of 30+k for a brand new one that would probably last me for the rest of my life doesn't seem like such a bad idea. I was initially keen to get the C3 but there's just something about the plasticky keys of a Yamaha and the bright tone that didn't really move me. The rest that i've tried are Kawai, Boston, Schimmel, Bosie(which Yamaha had a few months back in their showroom, just for kicks), Hailun, W&L and Grotrian.

Amongst these, there is something really special about the singing tone of the Grotrian 192 that connected with me and I have to say that it's probably the one I liked the most out of all of them....only thing is that the price is about 2x of my budget! The Hailun had a rather nice sound and touch too and for its price, I have to say it's quite a steal but then again, I don't know what's the shelf-life of a china piano, especially in a country like ours. I wanted to try the Petrof which was probably the closest to my budget(it's about the same price as a Yamaha C3) but unfortunately they didn't have it in the showroom. My own experience with Petrof is my cousin's one whose piano is just falling apart and I didn't have a great impression of the brand despite its Czech roots. I've also read on a couple of forums that the new pianos are better but then again, some technicians have said that they're still awful pianos (and we're talking about pianos circa 2001 here).

Oh yes, I remember trying out an Ibach a long time ago when Singapore Piano was in existence... that was another fantastic piano with a beautiful singing tone. Too bad they don't distribute anymore. frown

Alrite, I'm about done with my grandmother story...It'd be great if anyone could share their experience with me...thanks! smile
Posted by: fj_s

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 07/20/11 05:47 AM

At that price level (30+k) you could consider the following:

a. The Shigeru Kawai (SK2) at Robert Piano? That one's pretty nice. Did you also try the Wilh steinberg in Chiu Piano? Cheaper than Schimmel, and deeper sounding.

b. Bohemia at Gramercy in tanjong katong (but the pianos don't seem as well prepped there)

c. A sauter upright, which is very nice and very pretty, and allows you to do the rapid repeated notes in La campanella or similar pieces with ease. I'm not sure where Alvin is located nowadays.

d. A used grand piano say from Asia Piano or Emmanuel. (Emmanuel also has a Fazioli and Estonia in the past, but none to try at the moment I think.)

e. Recently a shop called Pristine Piano also started selling restored Steinways that you might want to take a look at.

Separately perhaps the mod could move these two queries (which are not about Hailun per se) to the Singapore thread and further boost its page count.
Posted by: Lucida

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 01/26/12 08:21 AM

I bought a new Hailun piano 6 months ago.. the HL125 model I supppose.. not sure.. the height is 125cm. I'm not an expert in playing piano. Bought it mainly for my son who just started playing piano. Myself I dun even have a grade 1 in piano but i'm learning together with my son.

I can say that I'm very disappointed with this piano.. even though i am an amateur. Reason why I'm disappointed is the the piano keys have this "clock" "clock" feel and sound particularly when i play the keys on the RHS. the middle section also have this effect but not as bad as the RHS keys. Can this be fixed with proper tuning?

Now thinking about it, I should have forked out more money to pay for a better quality piano... Not sure if I should try to sell away the piano or just use it for the time being until when my son is really interested in piano

Any advise? Keep or return to the piano shop for half the price... I used it for only 6months..:~
Posted by: Rotom

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 01/26/12 08:52 AM

Welcome to the forums, Lucida! I'm sorry you are having problems with your Hailun. My advice is to get a better technician who knows how to adress your problems. It seems the piano has not been prepped (action regulated in this case) properly. Properly adjusted piano actions should not be producing "clock clock" sounds in any way or fashion. I have played Hailun uprights, and i have not seen or heard problems like you describe.


Edit: contact your dealer and tell tham about it; pianos should not have any problems like you describe.

Best of luck!
Posted by: Guapo Gabacho

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 01/26/12 10:02 AM

I would slam the dealer before the brand.
Posted by: Rich Galassini

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 01/27/12 05:51 AM

Originally Posted By: Guapo Gabacho
I would slam the dealer before the brand.


Lucida,

This is not a brand issue, but a piano issue. If you have shared this with your dealer and they have not sent someone out to correct it, shame on them. If you can get no satisfaction from your dealer, then get in touch with Hailun directly through their website.

Keep us posted,
Posted by: johnlewisgrant

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 01/27/12 09:37 AM

Before purchasing my Hailun 218 I played one Hailun upright, simply because it happened to be in the room! I can fully appreciate why you might have fallen for the instrument: the one I played had an absolutely beautiful tone.

Usually issues with touch are not difficult to address, at least in my experience. I wouldn't let go of the piano, because it is very unlikely you'll find anything in the same price range with remotely as beautiful a tone.

Recently purchased pianos SHOULD come with some kind of warranty; so try to have the action dealt with!!!

JG
Posted by: Lucida

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 01/30/12 04:42 AM

I contacted the dealer and he say he will send someone to check the piano this Friday. Hope that the problem will be fixed. Will update again on my experience
Posted by: Rich Galassini

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 01/30/12 11:07 AM

Please do keep us posted, Lucida.
Posted by: KBS

Re: Hailun, anyone? - 01/30/12 02:55 PM

Hi Lucida,
I just came from a shop that had some Hailuns and loved how they felt & sounded! I was amazed, though, at how different they were from each other! (have to say that I also tried out the Petrofs, a Kawai, a vertical Steinway, along with others...). My head is spinning with the possibilities now, as when I left my home this morning, I really didn't think I'd be able to hear or feel the differences that everyone writes about...

I am sorry to hear that you've been having a problem with your piano, I hope that it is easily resolved by the tech visit. I am in an evaluative stage and now want to try many pianos before making the final purchase. Reading posts, (along with the comments of the pros who populate these forums), are very helpful to learn of issues, as well as resolutions, that others are encountering. Please do post with an update!