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Why are Jansen benches so much money? #1958255
09/13/12 11:57 AM
09/13/12 11:57 AM
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Radio.Octave Offline OP
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Why the heck are they so expensive? Over 600 bucks for the standard bench, and it doesn't even come with leather. Really? I'm sure the quality is great, but that price just seems ridiculous to me. crazy


Kawai RX-6 BLAK
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Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958261
09/13/12 12:05 PM
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Because some people have $600+ to spend on a piano bench. Same reason there are $150,000 pianos, $2,000,000 houses and $80,000 sports cars. To meet a market demand.

And hey, you get a real nice bench for that $600. It's not like designer clothing where they make a pair of slacks in the same sweatshop as the ones at Target but charge 5x as much by slapping a designer label on them. Or Steinway pianos where the name plate instantly doubles the asking price.


Current Life+Music Philosophy: Less Thinking, More Foot Tapping

Ars Longa, Vita Brevis
Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958264
09/13/12 12:10 PM
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Have you ever shopped for actual fine furniture? You generally really do get what you pay for. It's not hard to spend $600 on an *ottoman* or a decent office chair. The piano bench has a more demanding role to fill.

Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958266
09/13/12 12:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Radio.Octave
Why the heck are they so expensive? Over 600 bucks for the standard bench, and it doesn't even come with leather. Really? I'm sure the quality is great, but that price just seems ridiculous to me. crazy


If you want something less expensive, buy a cheap Chinese knockoff that will break in two years.

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Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958269
09/13/12 12:15 PM
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Kind of like pianos, one cannot expect a bench costing 50% more to be "50% better". But the quality of these benches seems to be unanimously praised(and I have one but don't know much about other makes),and a piano bench can be a once per lifetime purchase. So many think the extra cost is worth it.

Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958270
09/13/12 12:21 PM
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When we become accustomed to cheap, it is hard to put a price on quality. Most of the leather benches I see have serious compromises made to hit a price and make them seem better than they are. What I don't see is Jansen complaints. wink


Sam Bennett
PianoWorks - Atlanta Piano Dealer
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Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958272
09/13/12 12:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Radio.Octave
Why the heck are they so expensive? Over 600 bucks for the standard bench, and it doesn't even come with leather. Really? I'm sure the quality is great, but that price just seems ridiculous to me. crazy

They are hand-made in the U.S.
They are a very limited production item.
The company uses very heavy-duty and high quality components and materials.
They are very heavy and shipping is expensive.
Their back-up service -- though rarely needed -- is excellent.
The dealer wants to make a small profit.

ddf


Delwin D Fandrich
Piano Research, Design & Manufacturing Consultant
ddfandrich@gmail.com
(To contact me privately please use this e-mail address.)

Stupidity is a rare condition, ignorance is a common choice. --Anon
Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958274
09/13/12 12:25 PM
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Jansen makes great benches with first rate materials in the USA. I saw something recently that Nike shoes made overseas cost the company about $2 per pair of shoes and they charge $350. For that you could get a Jansen bench.


Knabe 5'2" Louis XV Walnut circa 1927
Very part time piano broker.
Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958277
09/13/12 12:32 PM
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Mine is excellent ... rock solid. It's like new after seven years of heavy use.

Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958283
09/13/12 12:47 PM
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Because, these benches are an excellent product! at some point in time if and when parts do wear out, they are very easily accessible and very easy to fix compared to some of the other benches out there. you get what you pay for.


Jerry Groot RPT
Piano Technicians Guild
Grand Rapids, Michigan
www.grootpiano.com

We love to play BF2.
Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958288
09/13/12 01:00 PM
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Radio.Octave Offline OP
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All good responses, but still way too much, IMO. The adjustable bench that came with my piano works just fine. I'd rather spend a few hundred on a more reasonable bench, and spend the $400-$600 that's left over on piano work (tuning, voicing, etc).


Kawai RX-6 BLAK
Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958293
09/13/12 01:10 PM
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I think most people who buy a Jansen bench can still afford to pay the piano tuner without having to miss their next mortgage payment. Remember that $600 to you might be like two dollars to some other guy or like six thousand to someone else.


Current Life+Music Philosophy: Less Thinking, More Foot Tapping

Ars Longa, Vita Brevis
Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958306
09/13/12 01:35 PM
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Comme ci, comme ca. A good bench means better comfort and better posture and thus better playing with fewer health issues down the road. It's the same reason a high-quality office chair or mattress is worth the money. Any piece of furniture that has to actively support you while you work (as opposed to just looking pretty and getting sat on maybe an hour a month) is worth spending a bit of money on. Relative to the cost of an RX6 black the few hundred extra bucks for years of comfort seems like a no-brainer to me. But I will freely admit that that's just like, my opinion, man.

Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958309
09/13/12 01:37 PM
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A good Discaciatti bench is in the neighborhood of $600 as well.

You choose what you want, based on your preferences. Have fun with language like "ridiculous," if you wish, but beware rebound language like .... cheapskate. grin

Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: jawhitti] #1958313
09/13/12 01:41 PM
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Originally Posted by jawhitti
Any piece of furniture that has to actively support you while you work...


"Actively support"? Oh, come on! It needs to keep your ass the right distance from the floor. A plain wooden stool is ideal and comfortable. If they came in continuously variable heights, no-one would need a piano bench.

Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Piano*Dad] #1958316
09/13/12 01:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Piano*Dad
A good Discaciatti bench is in the neighborhood of $600 as well.

You choose what you want, based on your preferences. Have fun with language like "ridiculous," if you wish, but beware rebound language like .... cheapskate. grin


Agreed.

Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958317
09/13/12 01:45 PM
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We rent grand pianos on a daily or weekly basis. WE supply a Jansen adjustable bench. As you can well imagine a rental grand bench take a lot of abuse. We have used the same bench with our rentals for the past 8 years....about 150+ times. It has a few nicks and scratches, but otherwise it is still stable and works like a charm.

These benches are built like a tank! Worth every penny if you need a heavy-duty bech or want an adjustable bench that would last a lifetime.


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Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Exalted Wombat] #1958328
09/13/12 02:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Exalted Wombat
Originally Posted by jawhitti
Any piece of furniture that has to actively support you while you work...


"Actively support"? Oh, come on! It needs to keep your ass the right distance from the floor. A plain wooden stool is ideal and comfortable. If they came in continuously variable heights, no-one would need a piano bench.

Yes, active. Most people do not sit quietly still as they play the piano. They move around; sometimes a lot. This is not too hard on a fixed bench -- non adjustable -- if the pianist is a petite 110 lb woman but as the size and weight of the pianist increases so do the stresses on the bench leg joints and on the height adjustment mechanism.

We didn't sell a lot of these benches but when we did it was generally to folks who had pretty much trashed other benches of lesser quality. Sometimes several of them. We never had to replace a Jansen bench.

ddf


Delwin D Fandrich
Piano Research, Design & Manufacturing Consultant
ddfandrich@gmail.com
(To contact me privately please use this e-mail address.)

Stupidity is a rare condition, ignorance is a common choice. --Anon
Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958331
09/13/12 02:11 PM
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I remember pricing these back when I couldn't even afford a real piano. I think I had a keyboard or digital at the time. I was surprised at the price then, and it was discouraging because not only could I not afford a piano, I couldn't even afford the darn bench. That's not a problem anymore, but there is a difference between being a "cheapskate" and just pissing money away. Personally, it's hard for me to justify spending that much on a bench. Sure, the quality is top notch, but in the end, it's still just a bench. There doesn't seem to be any shortage of Jansen fanboys on here though, so I'm sure they'll have no trouble staying in business.

Last edited by Radio.Octave; 09/13/12 02:12 PM.

Kawai RX-6 BLAK
Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958349
09/13/12 02:30 PM
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So, buy one for $300 then and within a couple of years or sooner, you'll have problems with a wobbly bench that will eventually lead to repairs $$$ that will eventually lead to replacement. $$$$ By the time you get done with all of that cost, you might as well have forked over $600 for the best American made bench to begin with because it will have cost you more than that.... wink But, hey, it's your money!


Jerry Groot RPT
Piano Technicians Guild
Grand Rapids, Michigan
www.grootpiano.com

We love to play BF2.
Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958359
09/13/12 02:39 PM
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I guess when I actually need a new bench, it might be a different story, but the one I have now is not wobbly at all. It squeaked a bit, but tightening the bolts seemed to take care of that. It's a few years old, but I'm only about 160 lbs, so that probably helps.


Kawai RX-6 BLAK
Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958362
09/13/12 02:42 PM
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Quote
Why the heck are they so expensive?


This was your question in the OP.

We answered it. Apparently you don't want to take the answers you have received very seriously, and your response is to talk trashily about pissing money away. You have moved from conversation about merits into simple emoting and trolling. Have a nice day.

Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958367
09/13/12 02:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Radio.Octave
There doesn't seem to be any shortage of Jansen fanboys on here though, so I'm sure they'll have no trouble staying in business.
"Fanboys" are incredibly hard to earn around here.

Your mistaken assumption is the belief that the cost has to do with hype, marketing, branding, paid spokesperson or some such markup - like a Nike shoe. It's cost is based on the cost of materials and workmanship. The idea that it could be cheaper is an idea based on fantasy.

Honestly, if it cost $100, there would be a whole market of knockoffs trying to sell at $50. Obviously something about the Jansen is attractive to you or why would you be debating? Being honest, what is lacking in the bench you have?


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Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958369
09/13/12 02:54 PM
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We got an artist bench with the Schimmel piano we purchased several years ago at my church. It was a nice looking bench but it was not a Jansen. Within a year it would rock back and forth on the top whenever your weight shifted from side to side. That is very disconcerting while you are playing. There are lots of benches you can get for less, but as stated earlier, you get what you pay for. I once had a couch from Montgomery Wards that cost about $250. It lasted about 5 years before it was saggy and the joints were loose. I bought another couch from the Hickory Furniture Market, not sure of the brand but it was a high end couch. We have had that couch for 15 years and it shows no signs of wear whatsoever, plus it's much more comfortable than the cheap couch ever was. Quality definitely makes a difference. That couch will easliy outlast 5 or more cheap couches, and even if it was 5 times as much money, it will be worth it. That couch will no doubt last us the rest of our lives, what's that worth? To me it was worth every penny of what I paid for it.


Knabe 5'2" Louis XV Walnut circa 1927
Very part time piano broker.
Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958381
09/13/12 03:16 PM
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Sorry Pianolance, you're a high end couch fanboy ... smile

Del clearly explained why the bench costs more. If the OP disagrees with that assessment, he has not offered a counterargument.

Cost is measurable. Value is personal. If someone does not value what Jansen offers for all that money, then they should choose another product.

Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: PianoWorksATL] #1958396
09/13/12 03:25 PM
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Radio.Octave Offline OP
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Originally Posted by PianoWorksATL
Originally Posted by Radio.Octave
There doesn't seem to be any shortage of Jansen fanboys on here though, so I'm sure they'll have no trouble staying in business.
"Fanboys" are incredibly hard to earn around here.

Your mistaken assumption is the belief that the cost has to do with hype, marketing, branding, paid spokesperson or some such markup - like a Nike shoe. It's cost is based on the cost of materials and workmanship. The idea that it could be cheaper is an idea based on fantasy.

Honestly, if it cost $100, there would be a whole market of knockoffs trying to sell at $50. Obviously something about the Jansen is attractive to you or why would you be debating? Being honest, what is lacking in the bench you have?


I did some research years ago when I needed a bench and remembered reading good things about Jansens. Honestly, nothing is really lacking in the the one I have now, just thought I'd revisit the idea.


Kawai RX-6 BLAK
Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958412
09/13/12 03:39 PM
09/13/12 03:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Radio.Octave
Honestly, nothing is really lacking in the the one I have now, just thought I'd revisit the idea.


If you have a Kawai adjustable bench, there is nothing lacking. The one that came with my K-2 was solid from day one. When I traded in the K-2 they wouldn't let me keep the bench! That was a bummer.


Gary
Essex EUP-111 at the mountains
W. Hoffmann T-122 at the beach
Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Piano*Dad] #1958415
09/13/12 03:47 PM
09/13/12 03:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Piano*Dad
Sorry Pianolance, you're a high end couch fanboy ... smile

Del clearly explained why the bench costs more. If the OP disagrees with that assessment, he has not offered a counterargument.

Cost is measurable. Value is personal. If someone does not value what Jansen offers for all that money, then they should choose another product.


Del did offer a reasonable explanation (which I appreciate), although all those criteria are pretty subjective. I could see if they were hand carving these things with a pocket knife, but how long could it possibly take to assemble? How much do the materials really cost? Something is only worth what someone else is willing to pay for it. Apparently, a lot of people are willing to drop 600+ bucks for a vinyl (not even leather) covered bench. Great. Enjoy! thumb As for me, thanks, but no thanks.


Kawai RX-6 BLAK
Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958416
09/13/12 03:48 PM
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"...I did some research years ago when I needed a bench and remembered reading good things about Jansens. Honestly, nothing is really lacking in the the one I have now, just thought I'd revisit the idea..."

Then you are in good shape, Radio.Octave, and I'm glad to hear it. Time was, I would sit on a kitchen chair to play and noticed no problem. Now that I'm old and wore out and have daily-medication-grade problems with my back, it's a different story.

I bought a $400 made-in-China bench when I got my present piano. It looked ok until I raised the scissor-lift mechanism to the proper height, then it was kind of bizarre. But that didn't bother me much. The bench was too narrow front-to-back to be truly stable during active playing, especially when I sat, as we're supposed to, with one-third of the butt on the bench. Then the scissor-lift got creaky, and the upholstery buttons started to pop off. It had become disgusting and uncomfortable, and frankly looked skimpy and silly next to a grand piano.

I still have it. It's fine as a computer bench. Wish I'd popped for the Jansen in the first place; I'd be 400 bucks ahead.

I could tell you a similar story about my attempts at false economies with piano lamps, finally ending up with a House of Troy balance arm lamp--- which I would have been far better off financially to have bought in the first place. Learning curve. You're like me--- have to find out on your own. It was worth the money, to me, to take some obstacles and distractions out of my path, since piano is hard enough as it is.


Clef

Re: Why are Jansen benches so much money? [Re: Radio.Octave] #1958423
09/13/12 04:00 PM
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A bench either works or it doesn't. If you have one that works then of course $600 for a Jansen would be a waste of money. Then again even $6 for a new bench is wasted if you already have one that works.

If one combines the fact that Jansen benches seem to last longer than most, they have proven sturdier when used heavily or by a demanding player and then you add in the price premium that "Made in USA" always brings I'd say somewhere in the $600 is about what one might expect.

Given that cheaper benches range from about 1/4 up to nearly 3/4 the Jansen price without Jansen's reputation for longevity and sturdiness and their "Made in USA" status, just how much would you expect them to cost? $589 maybe? $499? Hard to see why they would possibly be sold for less than what you can spend on a lower-quality bench.


Current Life+Music Philosophy: Less Thinking, More Foot Tapping

Ars Longa, Vita Brevis
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