Piano shopping

Posted by: justpin

Piano shopping - 11/25/12 07:43 AM

Being very much a beginner I'm not sure what to look for.

But when buying stuff I usually bring somebody in the know. I am in the know about motorbikes, cars and cookers.

Would it be appropriate to bring your piano teacher to go look for an acoustic piano? I'm assuming its probably going to be at the rate you pay for lessons?

Or is it totally subjective? I was looking at a few dwarf pianos the other day and the touch felt absolutely horrible, the sound was WORSE than my Casio and this was in a pretty big dealer.

I find I can sort of adjust my playing to the weight of the keys, the bechstein and steinway being incredibly light. The Casio and Kembles being rather heavier.
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: Piano shopping - 11/25/12 08:09 AM

The best general and unbiased information about pianos is in the Piano Buyer(see free link in the left column). Your teacher could also be helpful, the degree of help depending on his playing skill and knowledge of pianos. The dealer or salesperson can also be helpful at least about the makes they sell.

Since you are unfamiliar with pianos and are a beginning pianist, take some time to become familiar with pianos before making a decision. Many people visit dealers many times and play at length each time before making a decision. Since you have been playing a keyboard, many of the acoustic pianos you try may sound terrific, but don't be tempted to just buy the first one that appeals to you. The most important considerations are usually considered to be touch and tone.

If you indicate your approximate budget and whether you are looking for a vertical or grand, you will get many suggestions fro PW members.
Posted by: Chopinlover49

Re: Piano shopping - 11/25/12 10:15 AM

My advice is similar to pianoloverus but with an additional warning. Many sales people will tell you how wonderful this 40 year old spinet is, or tell you that a very old upright they have on consignment is just right for you. Most pianos they have on consignment are ones they wouldn't buy outright themselves because they are needing work or too old or whatever. Spinets and the larger console pianos have nothing in common. Stay away from spinets. (If you really want to go cheap and you like one of the spinets you find in a shop, you can probably find someone on Craigslist practically giving one away. They are not very good pianos as a rule.) You probably will be buying an upright if you are a beginner, but if you have a larger budget, a grand piano in the six foot range is usually a better piano in many ways. It all depends on your budget, space, how serious you are about playing, and so on. Read a lot of the posts here, using the search feature. There are a lot of choices but take your time. Good luck! Keep us informed how your search is going.
Posted by: Mark VC

Re: Piano shopping - 11/26/12 11:25 AM

Remember one thing: it is a whole lot easier to buy a piano than it is to sell one. Since you're very much a beginner, there is the possibility that you won't actually like it much, or make time for it, or whatever. Consider that, and consider that you can have a heck of a lot of fun, and learn a lot, with a digital piano that costs well under a thousand, super easy to move, sounds pretty nice with headphones, doesn't wake the neighbors, and can be disposed of on craigslist over a weekend. Just sayin.
Posted by: justpin

Re: Piano shopping - 11/26/12 04:12 PM

Hmm point taken. I was very happy with my digital. Until I got to play a concert grand.....

Maybe I'll get a PX150 or something instead as the touch is a bit nicer than my CDP.
Posted by: jdw

Re: Piano shopping - 11/26/12 05:48 PM

If you feel drawn to the acoustics, I think you'll be much happier if you go ahead and get one. A good piano will call to you and ask to be played smile !

I don't think you have to worry about losing interest, especially given that you've been interested enough so far to spend time on this forum! I think people are much likelier to get discouraged when they don't have an instrument that furthers their aspirations.

(NB I have zero financial interest in the sale of acoustic pianos smile )