Young Chang brand any good?

Posted by: rintincop

Young Chang brand any good? - 10/09/12 02:34 PM

I am wondering what you all think about the Young Chang pianos in general? Poor tone? Poor build quality when new?

There's a used G-150 Baby Grand Piano 4'11" and I'm wondering if it's worth even bothering to go and play it.
Posted by: BruceD

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/09/12 03:35 PM

Three points :

1) Larry Fine rates the Young Chang as an Upper Level Tier 4 Piano after
Tier 1 : Highest Quality Performance Pianos (including, but not limited to Bosendorfer, Bechstein, Hamburg Steinway)
Tier 2 : High Quality Performance Pianos : (including, but not limited to Grotrian, Mason & Hamlin, Estonia, New York Steinway)
Tier 3 : Good Quality Performance Pianos : (including, but not limited to Walter, Petrof, Schimmel)
Tier 4 : Upper Level Consumer Grade Pianos (including, but not limited to Brodman, Wm, Knabe, Young Chang, Yamaha C)

Note : I was too lazy to type up the whole list for each category, but gave some representative pianos for points of reference.

2) : In my opinion any grand piano - and even more so when you get down to consumer level - as small as 4' 11" is not worth looking at. There are just too many design compromises in that size piano for them to be much more than a piece of furniture. A used G-150 4' 11" surely is worthy of even less consideration, in my opinion, whatever the price.

3) As with any used piano, condition is of prime importance and condition can only be determined by a technician examining the piano, no matter what the owner might say. Young Chang has had a pretty varied history, which may affect quality which, in turn, could certainly affect condition
- first aided by Yamaha when YC assembled their pianos in South Korea,
- then moved their operations to China
- Samick, their Korean rival, acquired controlling interest of YC in 2004,
- but Samick was ordered to sell its interests in the company, - but manipulations forced YC into bankruptcy,
- Hyundai Development took over YC in 2006 and claims quality control is improving the overall desirability of their pianos.
Such a history would give me little confidence in their products, regardless of the date of manufacture, particularly if there might be warranty issues with an individual instrument.

A medium-grade, decent sized vertical (upright) would undoubtedly be a much better purchase.

Regards,
Posted by: carey

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/09/12 04:12 PM

Originally Posted By: rintincop
I am wondering what you all think about the Young Chang pianos in general? Poor tone? Poor build quality when new?

There's a used G-150 Baby Grand Piano 4'11" and I'm wondering if it's worth even bothering to go and play it.


It is difficult to make blanket statements about Young Chang pianos. So much depends on when and where the piano was built, the specific model, whether it has been maintained/abused, etc. While Young Changs have improved dramatically over the past several years, the G series was always the basic model suited primarily for home use. I've played both good and bad ones. You have nothing to lose by going to see the piano, but I agree with Bruce that 4'11" is mighty small for a grand. I personally owned a 5'7" Young Chang Weber for a few years and really liked it - but it wasn't the basic model.
Posted by: bellamusica

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/09/12 06:22 PM

I own a 6'1" Young Chang grand (it's around 20 years old now) and my husband (also a pianist) and I both like it. I wouldn't class it with a Steinway, but it has a nice touch and tone.

I would be wary of buying a 4'11" grand though...
Posted by: JoelW

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/09/12 07:42 PM

I've done some research about the qualities of pianos and I find that it really comes down to the country of origin.

The best pianos are at the top. The worst are at the bottom.

1. America, parts of Europe.

2. Japan

3. Korea

4. China, Indonesia
Posted by: Kreisler

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/09/12 07:47 PM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
It's Chinese. How good could it be..


Extremely good. Chinese manufacturing has improved dramatically over the past few decades, and I believe they are now the #1 producer (and possibly consumer) of pianos worldwide.
Posted by: JoelW

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/09/12 07:48 PM

Originally Posted By: Kreisler
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
It's Chinese. How good could it be..


Extremely good. Chinese manufacturing has improved dramatically over the past few decades, and I believe they are now the #1 producer (and possibly consumer) of pianos worldwide.


And exactly which brand are you talking about?
Posted by: carey

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/09/12 07:53 PM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
I've done some research about the qualities of pianos and I find that it really comes down to the country of origin.

The best pianos are at the top. The worst are at the bottom.

1. America, parts of Europe.

2. Japan

3. Korea

4. China, Indonesia


So what else is new? grin
Posted by: carey

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/09/12 07:55 PM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
It's Chinese. How good could it be..


If we are talking about the older model Young Chang referred to by the OP, then it most likely was built in Korea - not China.
Posted by: JoelW

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/09/12 07:57 PM

In all honesty, I think OP's question is much better suited in the piano TECHNICIAN's forum.
Posted by: carey

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/09/12 08:01 PM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
In all honesty, I think OP's question is much better suited in the piano TECHNICIAN's forum.


Or even better still, the Piano Forum. grin
Posted by: JoelW

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/09/12 08:11 PM

Originally Posted By: carey
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
In all honesty, I think OP's question is much better suited in the piano TECHNICIAN's forum.


Or even better still, the Piano Forum. grin


I guess. Either one would be better than the Pianist Corner.
Posted by: trigalg693

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/09/12 09:27 PM

Originally Posted By: Kreisler
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
It's Chinese. How good could it be..


Extremely good. Chinese manufacturing has improved dramatically over the past few decades, and I believe they are now the #1 producer (and possibly consumer) of pianos worldwide.


#1 producer doesn't tell the story.

mazurkajoe go piano shopping or something and go play some pianos. I don't know about you, but in the past 4-5 years I always liked any Chinese piano I've played more than any Korean piano I've played. In particular, I absolutely hated the action on every Korean piano I've ever played. On the contrary, some Chinese pianos really nail action feel. I'll admit I never got to touch a premium line Korean piano like Praemberger (I hope I'm not giving an incorrect example) though, they could be much better.
Posted by: JoelW

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/09/12 10:10 PM

I would pick any Steinway over any Chinese piano. The name does say something.
Posted by: trigalg693

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/10/12 01:41 AM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
I would pick any Steinway over any Chinese piano. The name does say something.


Haha, of course :P. Well, that is if you're comparing pianos in similar condition. Steinways are also made to a MUCH higher price point anyways.
Posted by: JoelW

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/10/12 07:16 AM

Originally Posted By: trigalg693
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
I would pick any Steinway over any Chinese piano. The name does say something.


Haha, of course :P. Well, that is if you're comparing pianos in similar condition. Steinways are also made to a MUCH higher price point anyways.


Well sure, but you're going to wind up spending MORE in the long run if you buy a bad piano rather than spending a few more dollars upfront to get the best quality piano.
Posted by: Kuanpiano

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/10/12 10:30 AM

Not really. Steinways are much more expensive and also need lots of pampering to stay in good shape.
Posted by: sandalholme

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/10/12 11:18 AM

mazurkajoe: perhaps you could give an estimate of how many "a few more dollars" will enable you to buy a Steinway rather than a Chinese piano?

Or did you mean a few thousands of dollars?

And why do you own a Yamaha if for a few more dollars you could have bought a Steinway?
Posted by: bennevis

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/10/12 11:48 AM

Originally Posted By: sandalholme


And why do you own a Yamaha if for a few more dollars you could have bought a Steinway?


Personally, for a few dollars more, I'd go for a Bösendorfer myself grin. Preferably the Imperial 290.
Posted by: sandalholme

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/10/12 11:58 AM

Originally Posted By: bennevis
Originally Posted By: sandalholme


And why do you own a Yamaha if for a few more dollars you could have bought a Steinway?


Personally, for a few dollars more, I'd go for a Bösendorfer myself grin. Preferably the Imperial 290.


Agreed!
Posted by: carey

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/10/12 01:01 PM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
Well sure, but you're going to wind up spending MORE in the long run if you buy a bad piano rather than spending a few more dollars upfront to get the best quality piano.


Oh I get it.......instead of buying a brand new 5'3" Pearl River GP160 for $9K, you'd be better off simply buying a brand new 5'1" Steinway S for $54K. grin

Of course, you should buy the best quality piano you can afford, but for most folks, Joe, even the $9K is a stretch.

Posted by: BruceD

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/10/12 01:11 PM

Originally Posted By: carey
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
Well sure, but you're going to wind up spending MORE in the long run if you buy a bad piano rather than spending a few more dollars upfront to get the best quality piano.


Oh I get it.......instead of buying a brand new 5'3" Pearl River GP160 for $9K, you'd be better off simply buying a brand new 5'1" Steinway S for $54K. grin

Of course, you should buy the best quality piano you can afford, but for most folks, Joe, even the $9K is a stretch.



And it undoubtedly goes without saying that if you have $54,000.00 to spend you can certainly do much better than buying a Steinway S.

Regards,
Posted by: JoelW

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/10/12 02:17 PM

Originally Posted By: carey
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
Well sure, but you're going to wind up spending MORE in the long run if you buy a bad piano rather than spending a few more dollars upfront to get the best quality piano.


Oh I get it.......instead of buying a brand new 5'3" Pearl River GP160 for $9K, you'd be better off simply buying a brand new 5'1" Steinway S for $54K. grin

Of course, you should buy the best quality piano you can afford, but for most folks, Joe, even the $9K is a stretch.



Understandable. But you know, paying $54k for a new Steinway S (so tiny!!) is a waste of money. You can get M's for $20k in my area, good as new too.

I'm not saying everyone, or even I, can afford a Steinway. (I own a Yamaha), but given the financial opportunity, it would certainly be the best choice to get the Steinway IMO.
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/10/12 04:06 PM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
You can get M's for $20k in my area, good as new too.
Excellently rebuilt M's cost a lot more. Non rebuilt M's costing 20K are typically 25 years old and rarely if ever as good as new.
Posted by: JoelW

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/10/12 04:08 PM

Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
You can get M's for $20k in my area, good as new too.
Excellent M rebuilds cost a lot more more. Newer M's costing 20K are maybe 20+ years old.


The best M I ever played in my life was at $23K. I'm telling you, the treble sang like no other piano I've ever heard.
Posted by: pianoloverus

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/10/12 04:18 PM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
You can get M's for $20k in my area, good as new too.
Excellent M rebuilds cost a lot more more. Newer M's costing 20K are maybe 20+ years old.


The best M I ever played in my life was at $23K. I'm telling you, the treble sang like no other piano I've ever heard.
Based on your great experience playing M's and your knowledge of Steinways you must be right. Your comment is an example of what I mentioned on another thread on the Pianist Corner. It's fine to ask many questions even if some are rather naive but then acting like an expert on some other thread doesn't make sense.
Posted by: JoelW

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/10/12 06:28 PM

Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
Originally Posted By: pianoloverus
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
You can get M's for $20k in my area, good as new too.
Excellent M rebuilds cost a lot more more. Newer M's costing 20K are maybe 20+ years old.


The best M I ever played in my life was at $23K. I'm telling you, the treble sang like no other piano I've ever heard.
Based on your great experience playing M's and your knowledge of Steinways you must be right. Your comment is an example of what I mentioned on another thread on the Pianist Corner. It's fine to ask many questions even if some are rather naive but then acting like an expert on some other thread doesn't make sense.


What the heck are you talking about? So I played a fantastic piano -- suddenly I think I'm a professor? Get off back back.
Posted by: trigalg693

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/11/12 04:01 AM

For most people maybe an old Steinway is fine, Steinways tend to have a nice warm sound. For a discerning pianist that actually uses the piano, said old Steinway probably has an action that's in unacceptable condition that needs to have many parts changed (a few years ago at least, 7000 dollars was how much it cost to rebuild an action) to be performing like a new piano.

20k for that M might look like a good deal, but you have to remember that pianos wear out and have limited lifespan. I have a 40 year old piano and my technician recommended restringing the entire top range because the strings were getting old. Cost? 1000 dollars, and he'd have to come back to bring the new strings back up to tune. I broke a copper wound bass string as well, and got it replaced. The heavily oxidized old strings sound markedly different from the new one, and it's pretty annoying. Changing those out at 70? dollars apiece is not going to be cheap. The bushings are severely worn and so are the "knuckles" in the action, among other things, giving a sloppy action. I didn't actually get a price quote on how much it would cost to fix all of this, but to really bring this piano back up to its original condition would cost about as much I paid for it in the first place, 7000 dollars. Even then, the rest of the piano has 40 years on it.

And even if all that were done, I'd still prefer to just buy a new Pearl River or Hailun or something, because I hate the tone of my piano (Kawai KG3C). It would probably last my whole life too, rather than have more parts quit on me down the line. Pianos are not cars, they don't lose 20% of their value driving it off the lot and keeping it at home most of the time. When pianos lose their value they lose it for a good reason.
Posted by: BruceD

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/11/12 03:54 PM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
[...]
The best M I ever played in my life was at $23K. I'm telling you, the treble sang like no other piano I've ever heard.


The implication in your statement is that you have played many Steinway M pianos as well as many other brands. If you can't, in some way, quantify your experience with Steinway M's, I would agree with PL's criticism that you sound - although you may not intend to - as if you are making an expert opinion based on considerable "lifetime" experience.

I could also say that I have played a few Steinway M's and all those that I have played have left me rather cold as being somewhat lifeless. Whereas, I've played some Steinway D's, Mason & Hamlin BB's, two Yamaha CFIIIS's and a couple of Bosendorfer 280's that could, I would be willing to bet, sing your Steinway M right under the table. Moreover, since there are any number of good piano brands at more than 5' 7" with much better overall sound quality - in my experience - I would tend to question your implication that a Steinway M at 20K - good as new - is a superb instrument is somewhat of a hasty if not skewed judgment. The simple physics involved would certainly suggest or even dictate that a larger piano with longer strings - all else being somewhat equal - will "sing" much better than a 5' 7" however good it may have been for its size.
Posted by: JoelW

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/11/12 04:57 PM

Originally Posted By: BruceD
Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe
[...]
The best M I ever played in my life was at $23K. I'm telling you, the treble sang like no other piano I've ever heard.


The implication in your statement is that you have played many Steinway M pianos as well as many other brands. If you can't, in some way, quantify your experience with Steinway M's, I would agree with PL's criticism that you sound - although you may not intend to - as if you are making an expert opinion based on considerable "lifetime" experience.

I could also say that I have played a few Steinway M's and all those that I have played have left me rather cold as being somewhat lifeless. Whereas, I've played some Steinway D's, Mason & Hamlin BB's, two Yamaha CFIIIS's and a couple of Bosendorfer 280's that could, I would be willing to bet, sing your Steinway M right under the table. Moreover, since there are any number of good piano brands at more than 5' 7" with much better overall sound quality - in my experience - I would tend to question your implication that a Steinway M at 20K - good as new - is a superb instrument is somewhat of a hasty if not skewed judgment. The simple physics involved would certainly suggest or even dictate that a larger piano with longer strings - all else being somewhat equal - will "sing" much better than a 5' 7" however good it may have been for its size.


I'm not sure what the point of this post is. Why are making this into a competition? Of course there are better pianos than that M I played, but this M's treble had a singing quality unlike any other piano (including a couple Bechstein and Steinway 9 footers) that I have played. It has actually been the 'standard' that I compare every piano's treble to whenever I play them.
Posted by: trigalg693

Re: Young Chang brand any good? - 10/11/12 06:07 PM

Originally Posted By: mazurkajoe

I'm not sure what the point of this post is. Why are making this into a competition? Of course there are better pianos than that M I played, but this M's treble had a singing quality unlike any other piano (including a couple Bechstein and Steinway 9 footers) that I have played. It has actually been the 'standard' that I compare every piano's treble to whenever I play them.

Either way it's irrelevant, maybe you found a particularly nice piano but to say any Steinway is a much better buy than any low end piano based on one example of a relatively low priced Steinway is pretty silly. Like I said, there are many reasons to want a new low end piano more than an old Steinway.