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#2028195 - 02/06/13 03:46 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: JoelW]  
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Originally Posted by JoelW
When it comes to pianos, generally bigger IS better... that's why we have 9' pianos anyway... If it wasn't so, we'd never have to build 9' pianos.


Bigger pianos are certainly better, because the strings are longer. That means 1) they don't have to be stretched as much to produce the same pitch, and 2) there's more metal resonating, which gives you a superior dynamic range and control. The same rule applies to uprights, which I probably should have considered before I bought my 120cm Schimmel. It definitely has soul to make up for the lack of power though.

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#2028229 - 02/06/13 04:42 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: jeffreyjones]  
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Originally Posted by jeffreyjones
Originally Posted by JoelW
When it comes to pianos, generally bigger IS better... that's why we have 9' pianos anyway... If it wasn't so, we'd never have to build 9' pianos.


Bigger pianos are certainly better, because the strings are longer. That means 1) they don't have to be stretched as much to produce the same pitch, and 2) there's more metal resonating, which gives you a superior dynamic range and control. The same rule applies to uprights, which I probably should have considered before I bought my 120cm Schimmel. It definitely has soul to make up for the lack of power though.


I believe it's the opposite. The longer the string, the MORE is must be stretched to reach the same pitch, but this results in a rounder, more full tone. Am I wrong?

#2028771 - 02/07/13 01:36 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: JoelW]  
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Originally Posted by JoelW
Originally Posted by jeffreyjones
Originally Posted by JoelW
When it comes to pianos, generally bigger IS better... that's why we have 9' pianos anyway... If it wasn't so, we'd never have to build 9' pianos.


Bigger pianos are certainly better, because the strings are longer. That means 1) they don't have to be stretched as much to produce the same pitch, and 2) there's more metal resonating, which gives you a superior dynamic range and control. The same rule applies to uprights, which I probably should have considered before I bought my 120cm Schimmel. It definitely has soul to make up for the lack of power though.


I believe it's the opposite. The longer the string, the MORE is must be stretched to reach the same pitch, but this results in a rounder, more full tone. Am I wrong?


You are correct. And now that I do more reading, it seems that because of this increased tension, the bass strings on concert grands have a lighter gauge than those of smaller instruments. The goal of piano makers is to use strings as long, as tense, and yet also as light as possible (for elasticity).

http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubb...a%20high%20tension%20str.html#Post909463

#2028895 - 02/07/13 05:41 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: Mark_C]  
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
IMO all we can be sure of 'with a reasonable degree of certainty' is up to about 6'3.


Man 6/3 is Baldwin L territory. Not what I'd call "baby" by any stretch. But I've had family ask if my 7' Yamaha is a baby grand, so what do I know smile

Last edited by jawhitti; 02/07/13 05:41 PM.
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#2028899 - 02/07/13 05:45 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: Morodiene]  
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Originally Posted by Morodiene
I call my 9' Petrof my "big baby"


I call my 7-footer "Vincent" or "Victor" depending on my mood, but my wife calls it "the monstrosity" either way.

#2028912 - 02/07/13 06:07 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: musicmad]  
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I think any specific guess(like up to 6'3" or any other number) about what the general public calls a baby grand is speculation and just silly.

As far as the other classifications go, most people are unfamiliar with terms like parlor grand, semi concert grand, and concert grand. Non pianists often don't even know the difference between a grand and a vertical.

Last edited by pianoloverus; 02/07/13 06:15 PM.
#2029074 - 02/08/13 12:09 AM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: jawhitti]  
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Originally Posted by jawhitti
Originally Posted by Mark_C
IMO all we can be sure of 'with a reasonable degree of certainty' is up to about 6'3.

Man 6/3 is Baldwin L territory. Not what I'd call "baby" by any stretch. But I've had family ask if my 7' Yamaha is a baby grand, so what do I know smile

Exactly! ha

And heck, the OP here was talking about a six-and-a-half-foot when he said baby grand!

#2029077 - 02/08/13 12:14 AM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: pianoloverus]  
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
I think any specific guess(like up to 6'3" or any other number) about what the general public calls a baby grand is speculation and just silly....

Yes indeed -- because I'm the one who said it. ha

Sure, it's speculation, but it's not silly. It's based on experience. And, assuming you know how to read fairly well ha if you go back, you'll see that what I was really saying was that because of the varied concepts of the term, we have essentially no idea what someone means by it. The "6'3" figure I gave wasn't any assertion; it was to say that if you want to guess at all what someone means, you absolutely can't have any confidence that someone means a piano of any lesser size than that.

I await your apology. grin

#2029088 - 02/08/13 12:53 AM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: pianoloverus]  
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
[...]Non pianists often don't even know the difference between a grand and a vertical.


As the saying goes, they just don't know which way is up!

Cheers!


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#2030676 - 02/10/13 05:28 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: musicmad]  
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(Hamburg) Steinway A-188 (cm) is considered the smallest concert grand. Steinways 180 downwards are called 'Stutzflügel', don't ask me how to translate this into English.
A-188 have already a very balanced sound, although for an average smaller concert hall, I would always recommend a Steinway B-211.
Grands which are shorter than an A-188 often have almost to no sound on the high strings, because they're just too short to vibrate well.

But the length of a grand doesn't only influence the sound, also the action feels quite different, if you play an A-188 / B-211 or a D-270. C-230 are not very popular around here, their action is often considered to feel a bit unbalanced.

By the way, here in Europe, a new Hamburg Steinway B-211 costs over a hundred-thousand $...



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#2030714 - 02/10/13 06:23 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: Mark_C]  
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by pianoloverus
I think any specific guess(like up to 6'3" or any other number) about what the general public calls a baby grand is speculation and just silly....

Yes indeed -- because I'm the one who said it. ha

Sure, it's speculation, but it's not silly. It's based on experience. And, assuming you know how to read fairly well ha if you go back, you'll see that what I was really saying was that because of the varied concepts of the term, we have essentially no idea what someone means by it. The "6'3" figure I gave wasn't any assertion; it was to say that if you want to guess at all what someone means, you absolutely can't have any confidence that someone means a piano of any lesser size than that.

I await your apology. grin
Your explanation is just as silly as your original assertion.

Last edited by pianoloverus; 02/10/13 06:23 PM.
#2030716 - 02/10/13 06:26 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: pianomouse]  
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Originally Posted by pianomouse


By the way, here in Europe, a new Hamburg Steinway B-211 costs over a hundred-thousand $...



Yeah but who the heck buys a piano NEW, unless they just have wads of cash to wipe their rear ends with.

#2030754 - 02/10/13 07:32 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: pianomouse]  
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Originally Posted by pianomouse
Grands which are shorter than an A-188 often have almost to no sound on the high strings, because they're just too short to vibrate well.


The highest strings of all pianos are about the same length, no matter what the size of the piano. In proportion to the pitch of the piano, the highest notes have the longest strings, which is one of the reasons why they are more likely to break than lower strings.


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#2030756 - 02/10/13 07:35 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: JoelW]  
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Originally Posted by JoelW
Originally Posted by pianomouse


By the way, here in Europe, a new Hamburg Steinway B-211 costs over a hundred-thousand $...



Yeah but who the heck buys a piano NEW, unless they just have wads of cash to wipe their rear ends with.


Many of us have bought our pianos new, although, admittedly, never a Steinway "B", in my case, but I take strong exception to the vulgarity of your statement. I saved for a long time and did without some luxuries in order to buy my pianos new.

Regards,


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#2030771 - 02/10/13 07:51 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: BruceD]  
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Originally Posted by BruceD
Originally Posted by JoelW
Originally Posted by pianomouse


By the way, here in Europe, a new Hamburg Steinway B-211 costs over a hundred-thousand $...



Yeah but who the heck buys a piano NEW, unless they just have wads of cash to wipe their rear ends with.


Many of us have bought our pianos new, although, admittedly, never a Steinway "B", in my case, but I take strong exception to the vulgarity of your statement. I saved for a long time and did without some luxuries in order to buy my pianos new.

Regards,



I'm sorry that I offended you, but I disagree with buying any piano new. Even if one has the money for a brand new piano, a brand new piano doesn't sound or play any better than an equal quality used piano that's been prepped well. It's just an economically bad choice in my view. The only reason I can see why someone would want to buy a brand new piano is for the novelty of it.

All statements are of course only my opinion.

I've also heard that with many hand-made pianos, they take a long time to 'break in', which would be an advantaged of buying a well-prepped used instrument of the same quality.

#2030814 - 02/10/13 09:45 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: pianoloverus]  
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Your explanation is just as silly as your original assertion.

If I'd had you as a teacher and you made comments like that on what I turned in, I'd show them to the principal and you'd be demoted for not understanding what your students write. ha

That's for humor.
This is for serious: Much goes over your head.

#2030877 - 02/11/13 12:53 AM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: musicmad]  
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"Yeah but who the heck buys a piano NEW, unless they just have wads of cash to wipe their rear ends with."

Hmmm...kind of one of those wonderfully ignorant if not juvenile statements. Why does anyone buy anything new? Well...it's generally because one has a certain expectation of longevity, whether it be a car, boat, piano or washer/dryer, television, take your pick. The same is certainly true of pianos. They may be wonderfully taken care of, tuned on a regular basis, yadda yadda yadda, but none of this will add to longevity. Most folks do not believe in trading pianos like changing socks. They want and EXPECT it to last. If you are faced with a deficit money-wise when buying a piano, your options are limited. It would be the same thing if for instance you wanted to buy a new Corvette. You either plunk down the dough, or you opt for used. For myself, I thought I would be better off learning about rebuilding, so that I could theoretically own whatever piano I wanted for a much reduced quantity of cash. The same analogy would hold true for a Corvette, if you still couldn't afford to buy it used, maybe you could buy one needing work. I have done this as well. There are other ways of securing material things without having to go into debt for them plus you get the satisfaction of actually learning something. It also beats the heck out of insulting folks that ARE able to afford what they want when they just walk into a store and drop copious amounts of money. You can manipulate the capitalistic market in your favor regardless of where you find yourself on the ladder. Resentment is NOT the way to go.

#2030881 - 02/11/13 01:00 AM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: John Pels]  
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Originally Posted by John Pels
"Yeah but who the heck buys a piano NEW, unless they just have wads of cash to wipe their rear ends with."

Hmmm...kind of one of those wonderfully ignorant if not juvenile statements. Why does anyone buy anything new? Well...it's generally because one has a certain expectation of longevity....

For what it's worth, that's not at all true for me (although neither is the wipe-the-rear-end thing). ha
I've mostly bought new pianos, but out of resignation, not preference. I prefer older pianos, but only once did I succeed in finding a suitable older piano in a reasonable condition. The other times, after a while I just sort of shook my head and bought a new piano.

#2030899 - 02/11/13 02:04 AM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: musicmad]  
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The JoelW's of the world might well be at least mildly grateful that some of us do buy pianos new - for whatever reasons (some of which are based on pretty solid research) - otherwise they would never have used pianos to buy, now, would they?


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#2030934 - 02/11/13 04:24 AM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: JoelW]  
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Originally Posted by JoelW
Originally Posted by BruceD
Originally Posted by JoelW
Originally Posted by pianomouse


By the way, here in Europe, a new Hamburg Steinway B-211 costs over a hundred-thousand $...



Yeah but who the heck buys a piano NEW, unless they just have wads of cash to wipe their rear ends with.


Many of us have bought our pianos new, although, admittedly, never a Steinway "B", in my case, but I take strong exception to the vulgarity of your statement. I saved for a long time and did without some luxuries in order to buy my pianos new.

Regards,



I'm sorry that I offended you, but I disagree with buying any piano new. Even if one has the money for a brand new piano, a brand new piano doesn't sound or play any better than an equal quality used piano that's been prepped well. It's just an economically bad choice in my view. The only reason I can see why someone would want to buy a brand new piano is for the novelty of it.

All statements are of course only my opinion.

I've also heard that with many hand-made pianos, they take a long time to 'break in', which would be an advantaged of buying a well-prepped used instrument of the same quality.


Clearly, you've not played many pianos young man.



"And if we look at the works of J.S. Bach — a benevolent god to which all musicians should offer a prayer to defend themselves against mediocrity... -Debussy

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#2030975 - 02/11/13 07:54 AM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: John Pels]  
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Originally Posted by John Pels
"Yeah but who the heck buys a piano NEW, unless they just have wads of cash to wipe their rear ends with."

Hmmm...kind of one of those wonderfully ignorant if not juvenile statements. Why does anyone buy anything new? Well...it's generally because one has a certain expectation of longevity, whether it be a car, boat, piano or washer/dryer, television, take your pick. The same is certainly true of pianos. They may be wonderfully taken care of, tuned on a regular basis, yadda yadda yadda, but none of this will add to longevity. Most folks do not believe in trading pianos like changing socks. They want and EXPECT it to last. If you are faced with a deficit money-wise when buying a piano, your options are limited. It would be the same thing if for instance you wanted to buy a new Corvette. You either plunk down the dough, or you opt for used. For myself, I thought I would be better off learning about rebuilding, so that I could theoretically own whatever piano I wanted for a much reduced quantity of cash. The same analogy would hold true for a Corvette, if you still couldn't afford to buy it used, maybe you could buy one needing work. I have done this as well. There are other ways of securing material things without having to go into debt for them plus you get the satisfaction of actually learning something. It also beats the heck out of insulting folks that ARE able to afford what they want when they just walk into a store and drop copious amounts of money. You can manipulate the capitalistic market in your favor regardless of where you find yourself on the ladder. Resentment is NOT the way to go.


If you are talking about machine-made pianos, then I guess I see your point. But not when talking about instruments of higher quality. A relatively new 'used' Steinway that's in perfect condition and receives good maintenance will outlive everyone here on PW including myself.

When I say "used" I don't mean "very old". The very second a 'new' piano is purchased it becomes 'used' and its resale price significantly drops. That's the way the market works. So you tell me, is it really worth paying thousands of dollars more for a piano that says 'new' on the price-tag over a piano that was 'new' 1 year ago in the same condition?

Last edited by JoelW; 02/11/13 08:06 AM.
#2031086 - 02/11/13 11:42 AM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: musicmad]  
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Joel, the only way a piano will outlive you is if it is maintained at a high level. I have played Steinways with flat soundboards that weren't as old as I am. It just depends on how that particular piano has spent its years. The average life of bass strings is roughly 30 years plus or minus. You can wear out a set of hammers in a few years time given hours a day of practice. The more a piano is tuned, the sooner it will need a pinblock. Metal threaded pins living in hardwood will do that. Pianos are not much different than other consumer items. The more they are used the more they wear. In addition, many folks these days won't buy anything without a warranty. The factory warranty is often only applicable to the original purchaser. Will the warranty ever be needed during the warranty period? It's anybody's guess, but it's an expectation when you spend the big bucks. As to whether it's "worth it", well only the buyer can determine that. Some buyers won't buy anything used, they're just hooked up that way. Others may be more pragmatic, and I tend to be at the other end of the scale that specializes in total restorations of darned near anything. In the end, it will really come down to what are your resources and how will you use them. There is no right or wrong answer to new vs. used.

#2031095 - 02/11/13 11:51 AM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: JoelW]  
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Originally Posted by JoelW
....A relatively new 'used' Steinway that's in perfect condition and receives good maintenance will outlive everyone here on PW including myself....
The very second a 'new' piano is purchased it becomes 'used' and its resale price significantly drops. That's the way the market works. So you tell me, is it really worth paying thousands of dollars more for a piano that says 'new' on the price-tag over a piano that was 'new' 1 year ago in the same condition?

Some of what you said can be argued with (and we are) grin but I hope the true things you're saying won't get neglected. This thing is true. And also there are other arguable advantages of 'non-new' pianos which is why I would always prefer to get one, if I find an available well-maintained one that I love, which unfortunately usually hasn't happened.

Originally Posted by John Pels
....As to whether it's "worth it", well only the buyer can determine that.

Provided the used piano meets what Joel said, it's hard to imagine that it could be, except for....

Quote
....Some buyers won't buy anything used, they're just hooked up that way.

#2031111 - 02/11/13 12:15 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: musicmad]  
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I agree with Joel that a piano less than around 5-10 years old that has been well maintained can be a much better buy than purchasing new. Over that amount of time there is a steep depreciation in cost and relatively little depreciation in condition if the piano is well maintained and not played eight hours a day.

I think the problem was with how he initially phrased his opinion about purchasing a new piano.

Last edited by pianoloverus; 02/11/13 12:17 PM.
#2031112 - 02/11/13 12:19 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: Mark_C]  
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Your explanation is just as silly as your original assertion.

If I'd had you as a teacher and you made comments like that on what I turned in, I'd show them to the principal and you'd be demoted for not understanding what your students write. ha

That's for humor.
This is for serious: Much goes over your head.
The problem is that you are assuming you are correct.

#2031125 - 02/11/13 12:47 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: pianoloverus]  
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
I agree with Joel that a piano less than around 5-10 years old that has been well maintained can be a much better buy than purchasing new. Over that amount of time there is a steep depreciation in cost and relatively little depreciation in condition if the piano is well maintained and not played eight hours a day.

I think the problem was with how he initially phrased his opinion about purchasing a new piano.


This is probably true.

I can come off sounding like a jackass without realizing it sometimes. I admit it.

#2031247 - 02/11/13 03:37 PM Re: Concert Grand Or Baby Grand ??? [Re: JoelW]  
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Originally Posted by JoelW
"Yeah but who the heck buys a piano NEW, unless they just have wads of cash to wipe their rear ends with."
[...]
When I say "used" I don't mean "very old". The very second a 'new' piano is purchased it becomes 'used' and its resale price significantly drops. That's the way the market works. So you tell me, is it really worth paying thousands of dollars more for a piano that says 'new' on the price-tag over a piano that was 'new' 1 year ago in the same condition?


I can't tell from this whether you are speaking from experience or from a theoretical point of view. How many high-end pianos have you seen for sale that are nearly new?

In my long shopping experiences for my first pianos, in areas that had several piano dealerships that featured high-end pianos, those pianos that were "new 1 year ago" were not high-end, performance pianos but, rather, pianos that had been bought because someone thought they (or their child) wanted to learn to play and then decided against doing so. In too many cases, they were production-grade pianos and, although "nearly new," were not worth purchasing at their "nearly new" prices.

The higher-end performance pianos I encountered, including those that had been totally rebuilt were considerably older pianos - 15, 20, 30 years old, or older which raised the question of longevity.

I don't think that many people who buy the more expensive instruments plan on re-selling them within a year or two. Only unusual circumstances surround such sales and, in my experience, they were so rare as to be virtually non-existent.

Moreover, as JP has pointed out, most new pianos come with a limited, non-transferable warranty that can be an added incentive to buying new. I know that in two cases where I had issues with pianos I bought new, those issues were covered under warranty. One involved a long-distance trip from a Yamaha specialist, a visit that would have cost me not only the repair but a couple of hundred dollars in travel expense had the visit not been covered by a warranty.

In another warranty issue, a new part was shipped to me from the factory without question.

I don't think that anyone would argue - I certainly wouldn't - that there certainly can be much to consider in favour of buying a used performance-class instrument in excellent condition, on the rare occasion that one can find such an instrument. Similarly, much can be said for buying new : dealer-manufacturer incentives, genuine (not contrived) stock clearances, warranties.

Regards,


BruceD
- - - - -
Estonia 190
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