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#156776 - 08/24/01 12:12 PM RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
piqué Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/15/01
Posts: 5483
i saw a bunch of ronisch verticals at beethoven pianos in new york. they are made in germany, and have beautiful cases. unfortunately, i didn't have enough time that day to sit down and really play them, but i am thinking of making an effort to return to this store to try them.

does anyone know anything about them? they are not mentioned in the piano book. are they worth the effort of a return trip?

i'm still in new york vicinity, visiting family, and will have part of one day left to shop, on monday. so far in the running are a petrof 131, a used steinway k-52, a wm. steinberg which i have not yet played, and then an incredible deal on a sauter grand, which is still too much money for me, but a really special deal.

in regards to the sauter grand, i have to decide soon how much financial risk i can tolerate, but right now am still trying to stay focused on getting a good vertical. in other verticals, i've also tried some august forsters and a pleyel and a mason & hamlin, as well as some schulze pollmans--none of those are in the running. either not my taste or don't care for the action. the a.f.s are too cold sounding for me, same with the m&h. the s-p's are not the caliber instrument performance wise of the others.

if i can find "my" vertical it would be a lot less stress on the purse. so far the vertical i've liked best was a petrof 131, but it was already sold. if i can't find a vertical this trip, then this sauter grand would be an outstanding value and i'll have to figure out some way to swing it, or else just keep shopping.



maybe a sauter vertical will turn out to be my instrument, though the list price is well beyond my budget for a vertical. i did get to play one sauter vertical, at beethoven pianos, and it was much too bright for my taste.
_________________________
piqué

now in paperback:


Grand Obsession: A Piano Odyssey

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#156777 - 08/24/01 12:35 PM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
Norbert Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/03/01
Posts: 14138
Loc: Surrey, B.C.
Roenisch [from prev.East Germany] tried to make a come back after unification but failed
to do so. Similiar to Steinberg ,near Leipzig, whose director "Helmut Altmeier" 'suddenly' disappeared with
millions of dollars[received by German government to rebuild these factories] in one of Germany's most
spectacular business frauds ,these small
companies in Saxonia now look at building piano cases and supplies for others.
In the opinion of many, they have only marginal chance of survival at this time.
Their own pianos, at least in Germany, were
rated second best, at best of times.

They MAY be an option,however nonetheless: if you like the pianos.........
....and prices are attractive at this time!
_________________________
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Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : C.Sauter, Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
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#156778 - 08/24/01 02:10 PM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
Rich D. Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/27/01
Posts: 1246
Loc: Rehoboth Beach De. USA
Pique,
Pianosonline, a Web site in the UK has over 30 reviews of uprights. One of the reviews was on the Ronisch 118K. Some background was provided similar to what Norbert mentioned. I'll quote part of it "Founded by Carl Rnisch in 1845, this German make is one of the first to advocate the cast-iron frame, universally adopted today. It exported to the whole world during the first half of the XXth century, until the bombing of the factory in 1945. Lost in the industrial mass -production of East Germany, Rnisch will only find its original identity again in the nineties, after the reunification. Today, with an extensive range,a great variety of finishes and manufacturing supported by Pfeiffer, Rnisch produces one of the cheapest German pianos on the market" The review was so so. Piano had a decent touch but lack of passion.
Doesn't sound too appealing.

Rich
_________________________
Retired at the beach (well maybe not completely)

"Life is like a piano....what you get out of it depends on how you play it"
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#156779 - 04/16/06 09:56 AM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
sadieh33 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/05/05
Posts: 15
Loc: Melbourne Australia
Oh dear, you should all hear this 1880 concert grand that I rabbit on about in other replies. I might not be a techie, but there's nothing wrong with my ears. Give the company a break guys. They get so much slamming. I know first hand how hard they work to provide a quality product. It's hard to regain your hard earned reputation after the Soviets sticky fingers have been so busy witholding enough funds to carry on as normal and dictating what and how.

The only reason Steinway had a chance to build and maintain such a sterling reputation, not that they don't deserve it mind, is that they were quick to hear the dogs of war howling and got out of Germany in time, relocating to a safe country which allowed them to carry on bulding their instuments with the same quality to which they had been accustomed.

If Roenisch had not been such a good quality product from 1845 till WW2, it would not have survived that long in the first place. The current S&M Director works his tail off trying to re-establish brand recognition and reinstate the product to where it rightly belongs.

Sorry, but I don't believe they deserve the constant criticism. Do any of you know that Roenisch were the piano builders of first choice to most of the European and Russian houses of royalty since day one, such was the reputation of Carl Roenisch. The crowns inside the grands indicate the particular royal house for which these models were holders of a royal warrant. I think that says it all.

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#156780 - 04/16/06 10:21 AM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
Axtremus Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/03
Posts: 6176
sadieh33,

You ressurcted a topic that has been dormant since Aug-2001[/b]. What do you mean "so much slamming" and "constant" criticism? We barely discuss Rönish half a dozen times since 2001. Rönish simply does not generate that much buzz on this forum, positive or negative. ;\)
_________________________
www.PianoRecital.org -- my piano recordings

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#156781 - 04/16/06 10:30 AM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
sadieh33 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/05/05
Posts: 15
Loc: Melbourne Australia
Axtremus
You never know who's looking. After all, you saw it. Sorry to have caused any offence. I was going through anything to do with Roenisch to see if anyone had replied to a query I posted in December. I'm faitly new to this forum and just wanted to share an opinion. Seems that most of the postings I read weren't all that positive re the Roenisch. Given that, a good word never goes astray, does it. As I said, sorry for any offence.

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#156782 - 04/16/06 10:56 AM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
piqué Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/15/01
Posts: 5483
sadie,
i'd completely forgotten about this thread, but i had it on "notification", so imagine my surprise this morning when i see a few emails saying there are new messages in this topic!

i'd appreciate knowing the source of your knowledge about roenisch. do you have any sort of professional/business relationship with them?

also, your information about steinway is incorrect. heinrich steinweg left germany in the 1850s, and the piano company he started there did just fine without him and continues to flourish in braunschweig, germany. it is grotrian-steinweg. the war had nothing to do with any of it.

many east german and east european piano makers survived all this time since the war not because they were making excellent products but because they were subsidized by the government.
_________________________
piqué

now in paperback:


Grand Obsession: A Piano Odyssey

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#156783 - 04/16/06 11:00 AM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
Axtremus Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/03
Posts: 6176
No offense taken at all. Just puzzled to see some one characterizing this forum's treatment of Rönish as "constant" criticism.

Enjoy the forum, mate. Since you're been researching Rönish for some time, perhaps you can start a new thread and share with us all your research findings to date? \:\)
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#156784 - 04/16/06 03:56 PM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
sophial Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/11/05
Posts: 3460
Loc: US
HI Pique
Are you buying a second piano to go with your Grotrian?

Sophia

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#156785 - 04/16/06 04:23 PM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
piqué Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/15/01
Posts: 5483
no sophia. the grotrian is all the piano i will ever need. \:\)
_________________________
piqué

now in paperback:


Grand Obsession: A Piano Odyssey

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#156786 - 04/16/06 04:52 PM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
sophial Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/11/05
Posts: 3460
Loc: US
I just noticed the date on the first post here!! no wonder -- you ended up with a far different piano than a ronisch vertical !

best,

Sophia

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#156787 - 04/17/06 03:13 AM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
sadieh33 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/05/05
Posts: 15
Loc: Melbourne Australia
Hi Pique and Axtremus

Re Steinway, I stand corrected. A new thread will commence later today as per your suggestion Axtremus.

As for Roenisch, it's a long story, but here goes. Pique, for you, the answer to your question is business, but more follows to help explain.

My friend, 73yrs old classically trained ex professional jazz pianist, owns this Roenisch C:1880 custom designed and built concert grand. (See new thread "Roenisch Grand" wuth pics)

Being old and having to move to a smaller house, he asked me to help him sell it. We knew nothing about it's history at the time. One look at it made me realise it wasn't a common piano. My background is in business. He was computer illiterate, I'm not, hence the collaberation.

I went straight to Roensich as I knew nothing about pianos. The Sales & Marketing Director flew here and inspected the piano in situ. The remainder of the research flowed from that point. We received a certicate of provenance from Roenisch outlining their professional opinion, all points and details of the instrument (timber is bubinga etc...) They say it's most likely the only one of it's kind in the world. Apparently certain aspects of it's materials and construction lead them to this opinion. We are all guided by their expertise, thanks to the Dresden bombing destroying all the records.

Research disclosed that it was custom made for Nicholson & Co, Music Importers and Publishers in Melbourne (1874 - 1939), most likely for the 1880 Melbourne International Exhibition and soirees for the elite of society. Melbourne is and was a cultural city, in the middle of a gold rush at that time. It was very British and many private concerts were the major entertainment for high society of the day. Nicholson was amongst the elite of the day.

Nicholson is the son (one of many) of the founder of Nicholson & Co Organ builders in the UK. He came here in 1859 and started his own business empire in 1874.

I've worked and socialised closely with the Director from Roenisch and have learnt a fair bit of the company's history, and it's struggles post WW2.

As for the piano, thanks to the enthusiasm and help of Dr.Geoffrey Lancaster of the the ANU School of Music Keyboard Institute in Canberra, they are acquiring it for their Historical Instruments Collection as it's centrepeice. The Federal Government has, after exhaustive (what's new!) investigations into the piano, based on the research, agreed to fund the acquisition.

This has confirmed the piano's importance and (thank god!) justified my instinctive reaction when I first laid eyes on it that there was something special about it. It needs a spit and polish but is in almost new condition, immaculate soundboard etc, although the ivory keys are gone, which is a shame. It's a miracle when you think about it. If my friend hadn't asked for help, it probably would have been advertised in the local trading post, ending up who knows where and all that we've learnt would have been lost, including the saftey and preservation of the instrument.

As is the way with these research projects, there's a wealth of info that comes to light, but that's basically it.

Hope this helps. I'm off to start the new thread with pics for anyone with further interest in the piano.

Sadieh33

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#156788 - 04/17/06 07:03 AM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
ChickGrand Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/02/03
Posts: 3204
Loc: Midwest U.S.
 Quote:
Originally posted by pique:
...i'm still in new york vicinity, visiting family, and will have part of one day left to shop, on monday. so far in the running are a petrof 131, a used steinway k-52, a wm. steinberg which i have not yet played, and then an incredible deal on a sauter grand, which is still too much money for me, but a really special deal....[/b]
Good Lord!! I started reading this thread with a big "HUH???!!!" Thought Piqu b> ( :p ) finally got fed up with that Grotrian. \:D

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#156789 - 04/24/06 01:38 AM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
Baron de Cardenale Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/03/05
Posts: 61
Loc: USA-Russia-France
So how much cheaper are Roenisch pianos than other German instruments? For example, what would be th price for, let's say, 5'10" grand?...

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#156790 - 04/24/06 01:52 AM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
Axtremus Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/03
Posts: 6176
 Quote:
Baron de Carnedale wrote:

For example, what would be th price for, let's say, 5'10" grand?
Last time I looked (about 2 years ago), it was in the low-$20k's USD.
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www.PianoRecital.org -- my piano recordings

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#156791 - 04/24/06 02:18 AM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
Giacomo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/07/06
Posts: 145

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#156792 - 04/25/06 05:25 AM Re: RONISCH pianos--can anyone tell me anything about them?also input needed on nyc trip
Baron de Cardenale Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/03/05
Posts: 61
Loc: USA-Russia-France
Well, then it doesn't makes Roenisch that cheap. They are still more expensive than Petrofs and Weinbachs, I suppose. By the way, during Soviet era Roenisch used to make HORRIBLE pianos (I had a chance to play few uprights once) that lacked tone, despite having very attractive cabinets. When I saw searching for a piano to buy for myself in Kyrgyzstan (one of former USSR republics), my piano technician told me to stay away from Roenisches in favor of Czechoslovakia-made instruments (East German and Chech pianos were and still the only available descent instruments in that area). Their quality must have improved after Soviet Union fall. Is Roenisch much higher in quality than Petrof?

I have never heard of Pfeiffer pianos though.

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