Piano for voice and piano studio use

Posted by: Morodiene

Piano for voice and piano studio use - 11/25/12 01:15 PM

Sorry if this is vague, I've just started my search and I'm still trying to define what exactly I want. I have recently opened a studio and for now, my business partner and I are using our digital pianos. I have a Yamaha G3 that I will be moving into the space from WI in a month or so, so that solves the problem for one of the rooms. But the other, I'd really like to have an acoustic to teach on in the other room and a digital as a duet instrument or an alternative for kids who enjoy playing the digitals more.

I have just started shopping around to get an idea of cost and what kind of piano my money can buy. One thing I realized is that I really can't go with a spinet or console, as the action in general feels worse than the digitals and I definitely want a step up not down. Also, I don't want something that looks like a piece of furniture in someone's home, but something more streamlined and suitable for a conservatory. The latter is a minor point, but appearances do matter to prospective students.

These things are secondary to sound and feel, however. I really like Yamahas, but I don't mind a more mellow-sounding piano either. I know pianos are all different and I have to play them to know, but if I can narrow down my search to a few models that will help.

What models would you recommend that have more of a feel of a grand piano, can withstand being used by children and stay consistent? I don't really have a budget, but I'd like to get as much piano I can for my money (meaning, I'm not willing to pay $7k for an upright).
Posted by: dsch

Re: Piano for voice and piano studio use - 11/25/12 02:07 PM

Sounds like you could use a Kawai K3.

I'll be selling mine soon.

You could check them out, see how you like the tone and feel.

I recently visited a wholesaler who had too many grands for me to count. They were tuned but many of them could have used a good regulation. Oddly enough, after spending some time with them I was glad to get back to my K3.

I'm still upgrading to a grand (hopefully soon), but it goes to show. You could do a lot worse for the money. Especially if you can find a lightly used one.
Posted by: Cy Shuster, RPT

Re: Piano for voice and piano studio use - 11/25/12 03:01 PM

Check out a piano with an electronic player system built in. I tune for a voice teacher, and she controls it through MIDI on her computer, so she always has an accompanist! She even tweaks the volume on certain parts when needed.

Entry-level grands with players built in can be had around $10K. You can add the playback system to an existing piano for around $5K (depending on options).

--Cy--
Posted by: Morodiene

Re: Piano for voice and piano studio use - 11/25/12 03:37 PM

CY: I really have no need for a player (and for MIDI things I can still use my digital which will stay in the room), so that would probably increase the price for an option I don't need.

dsch: I've heard good things about Kawai, maybe I will check out the K3 model. What does it go for brand new? Better yet, I see you're in FL too...where in FL? I'm in south FL. laugh
Posted by: Peter K. Mose

Re: Piano for voice and piano studio use - 11/25/12 10:44 PM

Morodiene, by all means try some 48"-52" used Kawais and Yamahas. They are easily available, from dealers and privately, and you would find them affordable and acceptable.

You might hire a local piano technician to do your preliminary shopping for you, if you have someone you like and trust. Conversely you could simply bring that person in at the close of a used deal, to confirm your choice.
Posted by: Pianolance

Re: Piano for voice and piano studio use - 11/25/12 10:45 PM

The traditional "vocalists" piano is the Knabe. It seems to have qualities particularly suited to vocal accompaniment. The vintage Knabes were well known for this attribute. Since the manufacturer has gone back to some of the vintage designs, they very well might be worth checking out. Just a thought.
Posted by: Morodiene

Re: Piano for voice and piano studio use - 11/26/12 10:15 AM

Originally Posted By: Pianolance
The traditional "vocalists" piano is the Knabe. It seems to have qualities particularly suited to vocal accompaniment. The vintage Knabes were well known for this attribute. Since the manufacturer has gone back to some of the vintage designs, they very well might be worth checking out. Just a thought.


Thanks, I have not consider Knabe, but will add it to my list!
Posted by: ChatNoir

Re: Piano for voice and piano studio use - 11/26/12 03:03 PM

If you look at an old program from the Metropolitan Opera, you will always see the words: "Knabe piano used exclusively".
Posted by: BDB

Re: Piano for voice and piano studio use - 11/26/12 03:31 PM

San Francisco Opera also used Knabe for many years. However, many pianos are suitable for accompanying voice.
Posted by: Dave B

Re: Piano for voice and piano studio use - 11/26/12 06:38 PM

There are many great pianos that set up well for accompanying. A slightly mellow Boesendorfer I service comes to mind. But;

I feel the best overall vertical, (bang for your buck vertical), is the Yamaha U1.

Also, there are plenty of excellent choices in digital keyboards. I suggest, especially for teaching purposes, to get a keyboard that works well with computer programs. Put your money into a quality keyboard and get the bells and whistles through a computer program that has teaching aids.

I gravitate to the Roland keyboards. The "V" piano is pricey but a lot of fun.
Posted by: John v.d.Brook

Re: Piano for voice and piano studio use - 11/26/12 06:41 PM

The Boston 118 is in your price range, is a great piano for teaching as well, because of the music stand. It is mellower than the Yamaha, and the action of the latest models is quite good.
Posted by: Morodiene

Re: Piano for voice and piano studio use - 12/02/12 07:45 PM

So I've been keeping a look out and here is an ad that was just posted. I'll be looking at the piano tomorrow, but what do you know about Th. Betting pianos?

http://miami.craigslist.org/pbc/msg/3450887815.html

The owner wasn't sure of the age, they had purchased it used for $1500 about 5-6 years ago from a piano dealer who refurbishes. They were guessing it was about 15 years old. I'll get the serial # when I look at it tomorrow.
Posted by: Dave B

Re: Piano for voice and piano studio use - 12/03/12 12:00 PM

It looks like an old Pearl River. Definitely get a tech check.