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Hooray--I'm finally able to purchase a grand piano for my front room.
I was seriously considering a Yamaha C3X with Silent System until I received the quote: $****** after an $11,000 trade-in credit for my U3. Yikes. This disappointed me since I was hoping it would be around $****** after trade-in as follows: Larry Fine's "suggested maximum" on a C3SG would be $****** Take **% of that to arrive at a price of $******. Add $**** (per salesman statement that the C3X is $**** more than the C3). This brings the price to $******. Subtract $11,000 for the U3 trade in. This brings the final price (after trade-in) to $******. Also, it would take six whole months to receive the silent C3X as it is a "special order." That is part of why the quote is so high.
I plan to look at the Kawai RX-3 at another store. Also, the Bostons. If I don't get a Yamaha, though, I would need to have a Pianodisc silent system installed--an OK idea? (not the player system, just silent system).
But I'm wondering: what else should I look at? I cannot find many piano dealers here. I'm willing to drive to Chicago to look at Schimmel, etc. but if someone could tell me where to go and what other comparable pianos to look at that would help tremendously. I prefer to buy new, not used, if possible.
Also, if I go to Chicago and buy, for example, a Kawai there, is that allowed, or am I required to purchase from my local dealer? Would it be permissible to go to a Yamaha dealer in Chicago and see if they give me a better quote on a Silent C3X?
Thank you Sam--I too was surprised he would say the C3X was only $2,000 more than the C3. It appears not to be true at all...strange. But I did compare them side by side and preferred the C3X.
I paid $11,000 for my U3 just six months ago. I love it but almost immediately regretted not getting a grand. It is not a Silent U3; it has a practice pedal which is useful and yet annoying at the same time.
Is there perhaps a handful of piano stores in Chicago that people might recommend? It's hard to know, coming from out of town.
I would suggest that you google the yellow pages for Chicago and then check out their websites. You will quickly find the stores which interest you and what brands they carry. Plan on a weekend long trip!
Marty in Minnesota
It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.
Hooray--I'm finally able to purchase a grand piano for my front room.
I was seriously considering a Yamaha C3X with Silent System until I received the quote: $38,000 after an $11,000 trade-in credit for my U3. Yikes. This disappointed me since I was hoping it would be around $27,000 after trade-in
Good going, it's hard to save up for a grand piano!
OK, those prices look wrong. I bought a C3X a few months ago, and I can confirm that it is a little more than the C3M, maybe max 15% more after discount, not 15% more of C3M MSRP (big difference). At least one forum member I know bought the C3X at the same price as the C3M at his store, so the difference should be less than you are given.
I traded in my GC1M for the C3X and got the price I paid for the GC1M back (bought from same store). PM me if you want to discuss exact prices that I paid.
Like your U3, my GC1M that costs $14K at the time seemed more than sufficient when I bought it, but as I progress from grade 0 to grade 4/5, I began to outgrow the GC1M. I didn't think it was possible to outgrow a small grand piano, but it happened. I don't think I will ever outgrow the C3X, but then again, what do I know? I miss the GC1M once in a while. It was a great little piano, never had a single issue in the 3 years I had it. The only problem was that it was a bit too loud.
...it has a practice pedal which is useful and yet annoying at the same time.
I find the practice pedal to be most useful for repetitive exercises like scales or Hanon and little else.
Is the Silent system a must have for you? How much of your practice time would it be used silently? I ask in part because some of our customers have started wanting the system but came around to the idea of having a good digital piano for silent play and other benefits in addition to their grand. If silent practice represents much less than have of your playing time, I would strongly consider this option. For the cost of just about any silent system, you get very nice digital with some of their more advanced actions and sounds and then simplify your piano shopping.
Cordogan's has Estonia, Pianoforte has Grotrian, other European makes + Kawai, Kurt Saphir Pianos has Bosendorfer and more, Grand Piano Haus has Yamaha. There's no shortage of choices in Chicago.
I find the practice pedal on an upright really useful when I need to practice at forte repeatedly especially involving lots of chords. Dropping the volume by 30 dB or more really helps with protecting my hearing while practicing the way forte passages had to be played. If I didn't practice with the right dynamics, then I forget to play them correctly for my teacher during a lesson.
I agree--for me, the practice pedal is great for Czerny and that's about it. When I try to play real pieces with the practice pedal, I cannot hear my mistakes very well so I think reinforces sloppy playing. Also it tires out my hands as I play with too much force trying to make the sound more audible.
You'll probably have an easier time in Chicago. Grand Piano Haus, in Skokie, is the Yamaha dealer you'll want to go to because they are big on the whole electronic integration with acoustic pianos. Schimmel and Kawai are sold by the same dealer, Pianoforte Chicago. Bostons can be nice... there are two Steinway locations in Chicago. You'll probably want to go to the Northbrook location for better selection. For best service, call every dealer you plan to visit and schedule an appointment.
4evrbgnr--Congrats on your C3X. I bet you're really enjoying it. You made a LOT of progress really fast!
Thanks. I didn't think I would be impress with it for so long, playing it everyday for the last 4 months, but so far, I've had this 'wow' expereience everyday. The more I play it, the more it clearly is the one. I've played quite a few pianos and the only other one that made me feel this way was a Bösendorfer 185, which was very refined all around. For me, that would be the only thing that is clearly better.
The biggest difference between the GC1M and the C3X is that I no longer struggle to create contrast in tone. I was working increasingly harder and harder to create the tones and dynamics that my teacher wanted on the GC1M, but it's so easy on the C3X, it's like cheating.
There was one lesson that pushed me over the edge in upgrading was when my teacher was doing Alberti bass finger pedaling on her Stienway, and I asked, are you using the sustain pedal? No, she said, that's the whole point of finger pedaling. Well, that sure isn't how it sounds when I practice on the GC1M. It's a lot more dry. With the C3X, the sustain is as good if not better than my teacher's Steinway. The first time I tried it, it was like, 'yes', this is it. Every note doesn't have this rapid fall off like every, uh, Yamaha. Sorry.
I could go on and on about my C3X, so I should stop before I start foaming in the mouth. I am so glad Yamaha bought Bösendorfer since I certainly didn't have an $80K budget for the 185. I'm happy with my Bösendorfer junior.