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Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Ed McMorrow, RPT] #2083356
05/15/13 09:38 PM
05/15/13 09:38 PM
Joined: May 2012
Posts: 7,439
Rochester MN
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014
Minnesota Marty  Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Joined: May 2012
Posts: 7,439
Rochester MN
Originally Posted by Ed McMorrow, RPT
The tone is simply less piano like with these arrangements.

This is a statement that I could never possibly comprehend. If any piano is "less piano like," I must assume it's a digital.

Do the finest pianos of the world sound "less piano like" than the finest pianos of the world?


Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.
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Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Minnesota Marty] #2083358
05/15/13 09:41 PM
05/15/13 09:41 PM
Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 5,039
Seattle, WA USA
E
Ed McMorrow, RPT Offline
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Ed McMorrow, RPT  Offline
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E

Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 5,039
Seattle, WA USA
Bi-chord unisons high in the compass sound like someone trying to sing who has a very, pinched voice. No body to the sound.


In a seemingly infinite universe-infinite human creativity is-seemingly possible.
According to NASA, 93% of the earth like planets possible in the known universe have yet to be formed.
Contact: Ed@LightHammerpiano.com
Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Roy Roy] #2083361
05/15/13 09:46 PM
05/15/13 09:46 PM
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 5,531
Olympia, Washington
D
Del Offline
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Del  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 5,531
Olympia, Washington
Originally Posted by Roy Roy
Originally Posted by Del
Originally Posted by Ed McMorrow, RPT
There are some recent advances in scale design elements that rebuilders are using in small grands that no manufacturer offers.

One that is now spreading thru-out the piano technical community is stringing the piano with a blend of different wire types that helps moderate and even eliminate objectionable ringing sounds that the low tension strings of small pianos are very prone to suffer from. This stringing method is referred to as Hybrid Wire Scales. If you can find rebuilders who know how to apply these ideas you can get an amazing sounding small grand that would compare very well and probably exceed any new small grands available today.

Another option, of course, is to design the piano in a way that doesn't use strings with very low tensions.

ddf


Is there any manufacturer does that? Sorry for my ignorance...

Both of the Walter grands (175 and 190) have uniform-tension scales through the tenor sections.

There are others such as all of the new Young Chang and Weber grands but these are not marketed as "high performance" pianos.

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: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Roy Roy] #2083363
05/15/13 09:48 PM
05/15/13 09:48 PM
Joined: May 2012
Posts: 7,439
Rochester MN
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014
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Joined: May 2012
Posts: 7,439
Rochester MN
For our edification, Mr. McMorrow, please outline the scale designs of all the performance grade pianos. I'm sure that would be germane to the question posed by the OP.


Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.
Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Roy Roy] #2083368
05/15/13 09:53 PM
05/15/13 09:53 PM
Joined: May 2012
Posts: 7,439
Rochester MN
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014
Minnesota Marty  Offline

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Joined: May 2012
Posts: 7,439
Rochester MN
Mr. Fandrich, thanks to you, the Walter pianos are not "high performance pianos," they are considered "Performance-Grade."

You do disservice to yourself, and to Charles Walter, to reduce them to Tier II instruments.

Cheers,


Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.
Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Minnesota Marty] #2083384
05/15/13 10:08 PM
05/15/13 10:08 PM
Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 5,039
Seattle, WA USA
E
Ed McMorrow, RPT Offline
5000 Post Club Member
Ed McMorrow, RPT  Offline
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E

Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 5,039
Seattle, WA USA
I will get right on that Marty! Thanks for asking! EDifying is my name after all. You are such a funny guy dude, everybody loves having you at the party. We talk about you all the time. You Kill Me. Ciao for now.
Love Ed


In a seemingly infinite universe-infinite human creativity is-seemingly possible.
According to NASA, 93% of the earth like planets possible in the known universe have yet to be formed.
Contact: Ed@LightHammerpiano.com
Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Ed McMorrow, RPT] #2083386
05/15/13 10:12 PM
05/15/13 10:12 PM
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 5,531
Olympia, Washington
D
Del Offline
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Del  Offline
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D

Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 5,531
Olympia, Washington
Originally Posted by Ed McMorrow, RPT
Bi-chord unisons high in the compass sound like someone trying to sing who has a very, pinched voice. No body to the sound.

That is a rather broad and blanket statement.

The Walter 175 uses five bi-chord unisons in the under-strung tenor section -- notes #28 through #32 -- that terminate on a separate transition bridge. This piano has been available for 12+ years and has been played by some pretty good musicians during that time. To my knowledge, now one has ever called its voice "pinched" or complained about a lack of "body to the sound."

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: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Del] #2083397
05/15/13 10:23 PM
05/15/13 10:23 PM
Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 5,039
Seattle, WA USA
E
Ed McMorrow, RPT Offline
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Ed McMorrow, RPT  Offline
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E

Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 5,039
Seattle, WA USA
Yes I agree it is a rather broad and blanket statement. The physics of multiple string coupling are inescapable. I have simply reduced it to a term musicians usually relate to well.

I have done the A to B comparisons many times and more tri-chord and less singles sound better if you control all the other variables. You can visit my shop to hear the pianos and that tells the truth. The only truth that matters.


In a seemingly infinite universe-infinite human creativity is-seemingly possible.
According to NASA, 93% of the earth like planets possible in the known universe have yet to be formed.
Contact: Ed@LightHammerpiano.com
Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Roy Roy] #2083451
05/16/13 12:18 AM
05/16/13 12:18 AM
Joined: Jul 2001
Posts: 15,432
Surrey, B.C.
Norbert Offline
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Surrey, B.C.
Thanks guys, of course it's Estonia "168".... blush

Quote
and Steingraeber-A170.


Yes, that's perhaps the ultimate.

But comes with price....

Norbert cry


www.heritagepianos.com
Greater Vancouver B.C. piano dealers for : Estonia, Brodmann, Ritmuller
604-951-8642
Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Roy Roy] #2083508
05/16/13 03:49 AM
05/16/13 03:49 AM
Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 2,511
Suffolk, England
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Withindale Offline
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Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 2,511
Suffolk, England
Unless set on a Steinway, M & H, Charles Walter, Estonia, Shigeru, or Bluthner you could go travelling to look at a Pfeiffer 191 and other German pianos but remember I'm no good with a tape measure.


Ian Russell
Schiedmayer & Soehne, 1925 Model 14, 140cm
Ibach, 1905 F-IV, 235cm
Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Roy Roy] #2083582
05/16/13 08:29 AM
05/16/13 08:29 AM
Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 944
shirley, MA
jim ialeggio Offline
500 Post Club Member
jim ialeggio  Offline
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Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 944
shirley, MA
To the OP,

In referencing this thread as "best performance baby grand" I'm not clear exactly on whether it is important to you that the piano be chosen according only to performance, or whether performance needs to be tied to tier one branding and tier one's accompanying extreme high end price tag.

A fair amount of chat on these forums assumes that the only way to achieve a fine performance piano is purchase a tier 1 branded piano with an extremely high price tag.

While the chances are quite good that a that a tier 1 piano can get you a very,very fine instrument, if you are focusing on the performance aspect alone, letting the cost part of the equation fall wherever it happens to fall, it needs to be said, some of the finest pianos available in this country, come out of the re-manufacture shops of unbelievably knowledgable, talented and experienced artisans in this field. These are better know under the larger category of "rebuilds", but "rebuilds" does not fairly describe what these artisans have done to their instruments.

Some select artisans in this country expend huge amounts of time designing and shaping the tone of their "special' instruments. Some of us outright declare our best instruments to be our chosen "hobby" pieces...pieces where hourly rate is somewhat thrown to the wind, and performance is an artisitc goal. This means huge amounts of time are expended in designing, re-manufacturing and tone regulating these pianos. Not all rebuilds, by a long shot, are of this quality, but some of the re-manufacture work, work by a select few rebuilder/designers can provide a level of performance that is comparable to the best tier 1 pianos available.

Not only that, but because these artisans are not branded, and because the market is as it is, the price point for a fully re-manufactured tier 1 comparable instrument can be 1/2 to 1/3 the price of a tier 1 piano. In other words they can be had at a price that a dedicated musician is more likely to have at their disposal.

One of the interesting points missed in discussing pianos and piano manufacture, particularly tier 1 instruments, is that the tone regulating that defines these fine pianos, is achieved in an identical way that the above individual artisan rebuilders achieve their tone building. That is their piano's tone and touch is created, by hand, in a labor intensive manor, by an individual human being...a highly skilled artisan. This happens in a tier 1 production facility and in select artisan rebuilder's shops. And... the techniques used are similar. Though, of coarse, marketing departments will declare their own techniques to be unique and preeminent...the fact remains that the skill sets and techniques are remarkably similar between tire 1 artisans and artisan rebuilders.

I'm not sure from your posts that the tier 1 branding and price point is important to you, but I offer this info should you be more focused on the performance aspect of your search.

Jim Ialeggio


Last edited by jim ialeggio; 05/16/13 08:32 AM.

Jim Ialeggio
www.grandpianosolutions.com
advanced soundboard and action redesigns
978 425-9026
Shirley Center, MA
Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Minnesota Marty] #2083621
05/16/13 09:38 AM
05/16/13 09:38 AM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 9,100
Phoenix, Arizona
Carey Offline
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Carey  Offline
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Joined: May 2005
Posts: 9,100
Phoenix, Arizona
Originally Posted by Minnesota Marty
Mr. Fandrich, thanks to you, the Walter pianos are not "high performance pianos," they are considered "Performance-Grade."

You do disservice to yourself, and to Charles Walter, to reduce them to Tier II instruments.


Larry Fine seems to be guilty of the same sin........ smile

http://www.pianobuyer.com/spring13/44.html




Mason and Hamlin BB - 91640
Kawai K-500 Upright
Kawai CA-65 Digital
YouTube channel - http://www.youtube.com/user/pianophilo
Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Minnesota Marty] #2083658
05/16/13 11:15 AM
05/16/13 11:15 AM
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 5,531
Olympia, Washington
D
Del Offline
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Del  Offline
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D

Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 5,531
Olympia, Washington
Originally Posted by Minnesota Marty
Mr. Fandrich, thanks to you, the Walter pianos are not "high performance pianos," they are considered "Performance-Grade."

You do disservice to yourself, and to Charles Walter, to reduce them to Tier II instruments.

Cheers,

Thanks for the reminder. I wasn't really thinking of Larry Fine's ratings when I wrote that. In my—obviously biased—opinion the Walter 175 remains one of the nicest small pianos available. In spite of (or, perhaps, because of) its extensive use of bi-cord unisons.

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: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Roy Roy] #2083662
05/16/13 11:20 AM
05/16/13 11:20 AM
Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 2,902
SoCal
Plowboy Offline

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Joined: Jun 2008
Posts: 2,902
SoCal
W. Hoffmann is also worth a look.


Gary
Essex EUP-111 at the mountains
W. Hoffmann T-122 at the beach
Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Roy Roy] #2083775
05/16/13 04:34 PM
05/16/13 04:34 PM
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 292
Toronto
S
Steven Y. A. Offline
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S

Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 292
Toronto
My vote is on Schimmel K169 and August Forster 170.


PLEYEL P124
Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Roy Roy] #2083907
05/16/13 11:21 PM
05/16/13 11:21 PM
Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 5,039
Seattle, WA USA
E
Ed McMorrow, RPT Offline
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Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 5,039
Seattle, WA USA
If the OP meant "best" performance grade-right now rebuilds done by the proven innovators who also exhibit world class workmanship are the "Best" state of the art in pianos making.


In a seemingly infinite universe-infinite human creativity is-seemingly possible.
According to NASA, 93% of the earth like planets possible in the known universe have yet to be formed.
Contact: Ed@LightHammerpiano.com
Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Roy Roy] #2083988
05/17/13 03:21 AM
05/17/13 03:21 AM
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 898
Germany
patH Offline
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Germany
No one mentioned the Fazioli F183 yet?
1,83 m (exactly 6 feet), and in my opinion very close to being the perfect piano. But not cheap.

August Förster and Steingraeber were already mentioned; their 170 models (5 feet 7 inches each) are also fine instruments.


Everything is possible, and nothing is sure.
Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Roy Roy] #2084221
05/17/13 01:55 PM
05/17/13 01:55 PM
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 2,952
J
joe80 Offline
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My favourites are bluthner, grotrian, bosendorfer, Fazioli, steingraeber, bechstein and hamburg steinway on a par. A little lower on my personal preference but still excellent is shigeru kawai and Estonia, and a little lower still I put yamaha and kawai although some amazing pianists and techs prefer yamaha and kawai to tier one pianos, so let your ears judge.

Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: patH] #2084242
05/17/13 02:16 PM
05/17/13 02:16 PM
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 1,269
Richmond, Virginia
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Almaviva Offline
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Richmond, Virginia
Originally Posted by patH
No one mentioned the Fazioli F183 yet?
1,83 m (exactly 6 feet), and in my opinion very close to being the perfect piano. But not cheap.


Pat, as the Fazioli 183 is exactly 6 feet long, most people would not consider it a "baby" grand. However, the Fazioli 156 is 5'1" long, and would definitely be considered a "newborn" grand. Have you heard the 156? What do you think of it?

Re: Best performance-grade baby grand? [Re: Ed McMorrow, RPT] #2084266
05/17/13 02:46 PM
05/17/13 02:46 PM
Joined: May 2012
Posts: 7,439
Rochester MN
Minnesota Marty Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014
Minnesota Marty  Offline

Platinum Supporter until October 5 2014


Joined: May 2012
Posts: 7,439
Rochester MN
Originally Posted by Ed McMorrow, RPT
If the OP meant "best" performance grade-right now rebuilds done by the proven innovators who also exhibit world class workmanship are the "Best" state of the art in pianos making.

Ad infinitum - yawn The OP stated he was looking at new pianos.

This is from someone who considers an Aeolian core to be on par with the quality of pianos being discussed in this thread.

Originally Posted by Ed McMorrow, RPT
The Knabe is probably the Aeolian 501 model that came branded as Chickering also. It is 5' 1" long. They are one of my select models to get ...


Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.
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