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Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
#2162253 10/05/13 05:33 PM
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I am looking at buying a reasonably priced, new preferable, baby grand. Right now the two pianos interesting me are the Kawai GM10 and the Yamaha GB1K. I've like both and have played both. Prices vary so much. It's a little frustrating actually.
Can anyone give me an idea of how much negotiating room there usually is in pianos. I would think another $1000 off the prices the sales people are asking would be reasonable.
Thank you.

Please note I edited this post to take out details on pricing.

Last edited by Mar23; 10/06/13 03:05 PM.
Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Mar23 #2162263 10/05/13 06:05 PM
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John Ruskin (authenticity of citation disputed..):

https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/John_Ruskin

"It's unwise to pay too much, but it's worse to pay too little. When you pay too much, you lose a little money — that is all. When you pay too little, you sometimes lose everything, because the thing you bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do. The common law of business balance prohibits paying a little and getting a lot — it can't be done. If you deal with the lowest bidder, it is well to add something for the risk you run, and if you do that you will have enough to pay for something better."


Pls excuse any bad english.

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Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Mar23 #2162266 10/05/13 06:18 PM
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You won't get much help here. People here will tell you to go look at PianoBuyer which has an SMP price (suggested max, a more realistic MSRP basically) and then to expect anywhere from 10-30% off that. So if you think that's useful then you can give that a try.

Not sure if it was that particular Yamaha, but I saw one of their small baby grands at Costco. It was one of the Gxxx, not their C/Cx series. And I remember the tag on that said 8900, so I think that's the actual sticker price, the MSRP is not very useful.

My advice would be to tell the Kawai & Yamaha dealers that you're in love with the Hardman and it's a great deal with an asking of $6500 (which means he'll probably take $5000). Don't expect him to match that price, but use that as your anchor. That's probably the best path to price discovery.

Those Yamaha/Kawai's are their entry level grands so it's conceivable the Hardman is just as good.

Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
BerndAB #2162269 10/05/13 06:25 PM
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Originally Posted by BerndAB
John Ruskin (authenticity of citation disputed..):

https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/John_Ruskin

"It's unwise to pay too much, but it's worse to pay too little. When you pay too much, you lose a little money — that is all. When you pay too little, you sometimes lose everything, because the thing you bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do. The common law of business balance prohibits paying a little and getting a lot — it can't be done. If you deal with the lowest bidder, it is well to add something for the risk you run, and if you do that you will have enough to pay for something better."


Sometimes you can get what you want, for the price you want smile

Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Mar23 #2162277 10/05/13 07:23 PM
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Hi Mar23, and welcome to Piano World!

MichaleH is right to an extent, in that actual selling prices on new pianos are sort of taboo here on the forums. There are many piano dealers who are members here, and they just don’t get too involved in discussing prices here, for various reasons.

And, I happen to think that the info in PianoBuyer is very helpful, and is about as close as you are going to get in terms of estimated selling prices on new pianos.

Also, for what it is worth, I think your process of deduction and your shopping experiences have helped you to more or less answer your own questions.

Maybe someone will chime in who has purchased one of the models you are interested in recently and state what they paid… some people are sensitive about revealing the prices they paid for something and some people seem to want to brag about it, if they think they got a really good deal.

By all means, keep us informed of your progress and your decision! A baby grand piano is a fabulous musical instrument to have in your home, and a beautiful piece of furniture! smile

Rick


Piano enthusiast and amateur musician: "Treat others the way you would like to be treated". Yamaha C7. YouTube Channel
Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Mar23 #2162360 10/05/13 11:19 PM
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Hi Mar23. Welcome to the Piano forums!

Like you, I'm relatively new here, and went through a similar buying process. I was somewhat frustrated about what seemed like vague answers, or non-answers, but I realized it was partly due to how I phrased my questions.

But the reality of new piano prices is that there isn't a "the price" for any given model. It's just like buying a new car. In general, dealers--of both cars and pianos--practice price discrimination: they want to charge each customer the maximum amount that they can (understandably). But very seldom will any two customers pay the same price. Of course, each dealer has a "bottom-line" price they're willing to sell for, and that is also different for each dealer. It's based on all sorts of things, like his own wholesale cost for the piano (or car), his overhead (rent, utilities, administrative costs, etc), and how desperate he may be to make a sale and/or move inventory. You may get a better price by visiting a different dealer (maybe in the next town), or considering a substitute (a comparable piano from a different manufacturer). You can also use those various numbers as information (ammunition?) to help you negotiate a better price with the dealer who's selling the piano you really want.

Remember, at any given time, the dealer trying to sell you a piano has a market of one: you! Every dealer in town--and nearby towns--is eager to sell you their piano. You, on the other hand, can buy your piano from anyone, anywhere. He wants to sell you a piano worse than you want to buy one.

Anyway, people on this site will be reluctant to throw out concrete numbers, but you can search this database for new grands:

http://www.pianobuyer.com/search_grand.php

It lists MSRP (Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price) and SMP (Suggested Maxiumum Price), and once you've searched once, there's another box that let's you adjust those by a discount percent. While people are reluctant to post prices, I have seen people post rule-of-thumb numbers about how much discount to expect by brand (like, Steinway doesn't, but so-and-so will discount 30%). I can't find those posts right now--perhaps someone will post some typical discount amounts--but you can query that database with the typical discount values and see what might fall into your budget range. It may also give you a starting point for haggling a good price.

I didn't go very far down the road searching for new pianos, because I decided I'd get a better value with an older second hand piano. But I was tempted by the new ones.

Good luck with your search.




Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet
Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Mar23 #2162455 10/06/13 08:31 AM
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Mar23,

It's actually a good time to be buying a piano. There are many good choices out there today, for a reasonable amount of money. Definitely check out the Ritmullers (RH series), Hailuns, and Brodmans if you have dealers in your area. Dollar for dollar and feature for feature, they are all great values and higly rated within their price range.

Also, having recently completed a 3 month shopping period and now 3 months into my new baby grand my suggestion to you is to give (or take) considerable points based on the quality of the dealership itself. Dealer prep, follow up service, etc. will be very important. Use all the tools available to you. Beware... you will hear some real BS out there so double check and validate any statements made by salespeople. Beware of those who trash the competition as their main sales tool. You will know... if you begin to feel like you're in a used car lot with the salesperson wearing a plaid sport coat head for the hills.

I discovered, that in my area of the US, 20% or a bit more off the SMP listed on Piano Buyer, was common. There is a tool on top of the list that will allow you to plug in the discount amount and it will automatically present the "real" price. I understand that the discount levels can differ in various regions so you'll have to get an idea of your area's norm. In any event, the 20% should be a good jump off point.

I eventually bought from a top notch dealership and that cost me a touch more but it was well worth it and I have no regrets. I just had my "courtesy tuning and follow up visit" and it, like the entire transaction, went very well. I love my piano and take great comfort in knowing that, in the ulikely event of a problem, I, and my piano, will be in the best of hands. I trust my dealer and that, as they say, is "priceless".

Do your homework and it will go well. It's hard work but kind of fun at the same time.

Good luck!

[i][/i]

Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Mar23 #2162457 10/06/13 08:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Retsacnal
But the reality of new piano prices is that there isn't a "the price" for any given model. It's just like buying a new car. In general, dealers--of both cars and pianos--practice price discrimination: they want to charge each customer the maximum amount that they can (understandably).

You make an excellent point, and you are right, in essence; but I think the term “price discrimination” is a little harsh. The word “discrimination” in itself makes someone a villain or a bad guy.

I see the negotiation process, regardless of the item being bought or sold, as a bidding process from both buyer and seller. No one is holding anyone hostage to buy or sell. If buyer and seller cannot agree on a price, then no business will occur.

Just my .02.

Rick


Piano enthusiast and amateur musician: "Treat others the way you would like to be treated". Yamaha C7. YouTube Channel
Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Mar23 #2162512 10/06/13 11:21 AM
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Thanks for all the input.

I live in Colorado. The biggest dealer in the area is Schmitt Music. There's also Pianos N Pianos and a couple of smaller dealers.


Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Mar23 #2162542 10/06/13 12:19 PM
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The Yamaha GB1 is pretty meh for a baby grand. The music rack isn't movable, the middle pedal's a bass-sustain instead of a sostenuto, and the tone's pretty generic. The Kawai GM-10 is a nice little piano with sostenuto and a good tone (not sure about the music rack). All things being equal, I'd go with the Kawai or maybe the Harmann (despite the goofy name). But most importantly, try them out and see which one you love the most. Sometimes it's not the features or looks or price that matters, but how well it speaks to you and how happy you are with it wink


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Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Mar23 #2162550 10/06/13 12:31 PM
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Hi Mar23,

At Schmitt's, have you tried the Lyrica, their house brand? It is built by Pearl River and is a custom upgrade from the standard issue P.R. It's a very nice entry level grand and will compete well with the Yamahas and Kawais you mentioned. It is identical to the Cristofori, from Jordan Kitts, and you will find it in the "Piano Buyer" under the Cristofori entry.

Didn't Schmitt's buy the stock from the defunct Baker Music? There may be some bargains to be had.

Good Luck and Have Fun!


Marty in Minnesota

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Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Minnesota Marty #2162554 10/06/13 12:37 PM
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I haven't tried it but am going in this week to Schmitt's to try it as well as the Kawai GM10. How would you say the Lyrica compares to a Hardman. Both are in the same price range. Schmitt's have a promo on now on Kawai's, $1000 instant rebate. The person I was talking to said prices aren't much different between the Lyrica(they still have some under the Cristofori name). If I like the Lyrica; going to play some blues and classical on them, and can get at least $1000 off their price I may go for that.

Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Mar23 #2162555 10/06/13 12:38 PM
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Mar23,

You have received a lot of good advice above. If you have settled on the models, and are strictly in the pricing stage, then I do not have anything to add. If you are still trying to find the right piano, then Pianoismyscrip's suggestions are useful. I had spent time piano shopping a little over 15 months back. My impression was similar to what Scrip says. Once I put aside the prejudices about the country of origin, and really just listened to the piano, things looked quite different from the preconceptions that I had started with. Everybody must form their own opinion. I would recommend at least finding dealers who carry the Ritmullers, Hailuns, and Brodmann, and giving them a try.

IMHO, there are a couple of fairly fundamental tonal differences across pianos, most notable in the bass/tenor region to my ears. Some of the pianos have a more fundamental heavy sound, while other designs have less emphasis on the fundamental. They sound richer at initial listen, but lack that deep sound which you may care about. One of my friends has a GB1K, and this particular piano to me is definitely in the second group -- a tone that does not appeal to me much. Since your piano is likely to be a somewhat long commitment, I recommend taking a good look at the characteristics before making a price based decision.

Last edited by rlinkt; 10/06/13 10:23 PM.
Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Rickster #2162557 10/06/13 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Rickster
Hi Mar23, and welcome to Piano World!

MichaleH is right to an extent, in that actual selling prices on new pianos are sort of taboo here on the forums.



Rick,

WADR: Remember that your voice carries the resonance of a moderator. Is it taboo or isn't it? There's a WHOLE LOT of stuff that comes up around this and some days I or someone else might take up the gauntlet in iconoclastic battle but today, I decline. Today, I am like our friend Norbert. I am innocence itself and offer nothing but a morsel that might lead another to insight or maybe not.

Kurt


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Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Mar23 #2162563 10/06/13 12:53 PM
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It's really a combination for me of quality and best bang for my buck. I am just a little frustrated in my search as price for the same piano in same geographical location varies so much.
Sorry for saying too much on price, I won't bring it up again but when you are spending a lot of money on something, to me price is important.
Thanks again for the suggestions. This week is to go and try them out.

Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Mar23 #2162591 10/06/13 01:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Mar23
How would you say the Lyrica compares to a Hardman.

I would put the Lyrica a solid step above the Hardman.


Marty in Minnesota

It's much easier to bash a Steinway than it is to play one.
Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Mar23 #2162594 10/06/13 01:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Mar23
It's really a combination for me of quality and best bang for my buck.


Just as something of a reality check, keep in mind you're looking at the price-oriented, entry-level small grands in each instance you cite. As long as you have casual use and lower performance/usage expectations, buy from a dealer who set the piano up to play well, and engage in a decent maintenance regimen, a beginner or early intermediate player could be satisfied with the choice. Entry-level pianos have gotten significantly better over the years, but "high quality" isn't a fair descriptor.

You probably don't want to hear this, but that kind of money would buy a good quality, nice-sounding new vertical piano or possibly a used piano of greater quality (subject to condition and inspection).


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Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Mar23 #2162595 10/06/13 01:50 PM
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Hey Mar23 - Price is important to all of us. If not, we would simply recommend you buy the exquisite Exorbitant, Excalibur, un Sohne. You can get them in polished, or matte 24K gold. For the budget minded, they can be ordered in gold leaf.

wink - crazy



Marty in Minnesota

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Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
Mar23 #2162597 10/06/13 02:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Mar23
It's really a combination for me of quality and best bang for my buck. I am just a little frustrated in my search as price for the same piano in same geographical location varies so much.
Sorry for saying too much on price, I won't bring it up again but when you are spending a lot of money on something, to me price is important.
Thanks again for the suggestions. This week is to go and try them out.


If you want the biggest bang for the buck in your price range then, by all means, audition the Brodmans, Hailuns, and Ritts (GH series). I think you will be pleasantly surprised. I mention these manufacturers because of the price point of the models you are considering.

Last edited by PianoismyScrip; 10/06/13 02:09 PM.
Re: Upgrading to a Baby Grand.
terminaldegree #2162613 10/06/13 02:36 PM
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I have a nice upright now; looking to upgrade. smile

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