First of all, I'd like to thank those of you who answered all of my questions over the last 18 months. I really appreciate it.
I've played the piano for over 20 years, but I didn't understand all the internals (like Strunz soundboards, Abel hammers, Roslau strings etc....)
I started out wanting to get an upright. I looked at the Yamaha T-118, but quickly realized it didn't make me happy. Then I looked at a Yamaha U1. I liked it, but then decided for the same money I could get a cheaper grand. Then I looked at a fairly cheap 5'4" Nordiska, but they sold it before I could make a decision, and didn't have more. I wanted to like the cheaper Weber, Young Chang, Kohler and Campbell, Knabe etc.., but just didn't.
From there, my budget blew up yet again when I tried Pramberger, May Berlin, and Brodmann. I liked the Brodmann so much that I couldn't justify increasing my budget yet again (thank goodness for Brodmann, else I'd still be saving for something else.)
I will say, buying a piano was much trickier than I'd hoped. All the pianos I tried either didn't have a price tag, or had a ridiculous (above MSRP) tag that was immediately 'discounted' and each time I returned to the store the prices were different.
Also each of the dealers were extremely prepped to criticize other brands (The Yamaha dealer heavily criticized Kawai).
Luckily, I have a good ear and a Russian repertoire to do my own analysis
, along with great advice from you guys.
Side note, I went to one dealership, and told them my approximate price range. They showed me their pianos, but I didn't like them. They then blamed it on my budget and said "You aren't going to find anything that's as good as you want for your budget. You should settle for a Kohler and Campbell and upgrade later." He really acted as though I was being unreasonable.
That made me furious. I'd already found pianos that I liked, and that were in my budget (Brodmann, Pramberger and May Berlin). The dealer just didn't stock those, and therefore criticized them.
In the end though, it was worth it, as I believe I bought the best grand my budget would allow.
Anyway, enough of my ranting. Here's a picture of it in my house (they're delivering the coasters later).