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New piano! Now how do I take care of it... :) #2555215 07/08/16 12:39 PM
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bluedane Offline OP
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Whoot! Just got my piano - a Yamaha GC1M. I played lots of others in that price range and I just love the tone and feel of the Yamaha. Thank you to everyone for the advice!

A couple of questions:
1. How important is environmental control (humidifiers, etc)? I live in Seattle and the temperatures don't vary all that much. I want to take care of it obviously, but I don't want to waste my money.

2. The piano is on a hardwood floor. It sounds pretty bright (not bad) but I intend to break up the sound a bit, hopefully disperse it more than muffle it with cloth and rugs. Any suggestions? I am an amateur acoustics guy, so I'm happy to nerd out if you are into that kind of thing.

3. The piano is currently sitting on hardwood floor protectors which themselves have furry pads underneath them. This raises my pedals by about 3/4 of an inch and I can really tell the difference after an hour of playing. I can't be the first person to run into this; how do other people solve it?

4. Suggestions on general maintenance? How do I keep this baby in good shape?

Thanks everyone! I LOVE this piano.


Yamaha GC1M, Kurzweil K2500, Native Instruments Komplete Kontrol
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Re: New piano! Now how do I take care of it... :) [Re: bluedane] #2555223 07/08/16 01:06 PM
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gnuboi Offline
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2. How about acoustic foam? I've seen foam hidden behind wall decor or hidden in the corners to trap bass. Or, cut them to fit underneath your piano between the braces? It will dampen but not affect the sound quality. If you want to "disperse" you could try some more upholstered furniture nearby but usually "disperse" works best by creating more space around the piano (like taller ceilings, huge stages, etc. etc....)

3. Adjustable bench? Shoulders need to drop and be relaxed.

4. Treat it like your own baby wink

Last edited by gnuboi; 07/08/16 01:12 PM.
Re: New piano! Now how do I take care of it... :) [Re: bluedane] #2555230 07/08/16 01:23 PM
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Congratulations on your new piano!!

Regarding acoustics, I don't think a rug under the piano will muffle it, you might be surprised at what a positive difference that makes. Maybe you could lay a comforter just to see what it does to the sound, that way you don't have a actually buy a carpet to find out.

Also, what else is in the room? We have a love seat and two comfy (i.e. big chunks of fabric and cushion) chairs in our living room (which also has hardwood floors) and moving them around changed things soundwise a great deal.

re the environmental control, I'll let someone else go into more detail, but it's not only temperature fluctuations that you have to worry about, it's also the relative humidity (fluctuations) of the room where the piano is. I recommend that you go out and buy an inexpensive (~$10) hyrgrometer/thermometer, it will tell you the humidity of the room so you can start monitoring. I was told that optimal is between 40% and 60%, more or less than that isn't good for the piano.

Again, congratulations and enjoy your instrument!


Started piano June 1999.
Proud owner of a Yamaha C2

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Re: New piano! Now how do I take care of it... :) [Re: bluedane] #2555243 07/08/16 01:49 PM
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bluedane Offline OP
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Done! One hygrometer on the way. smile

We have a giant leather squishy couch, although the piano lid opens in the other direction. A few pieces of hard furniture (TV cabinet, table, etc). It is not a huge room (living room) with about 8' ceilings. I will see what effect hanging some stuff on the walls has. I will also try the comforter.

thanks!


Yamaha GC1M, Kurzweil K2500, Native Instruments Komplete Kontrol
Re: New piano! Now how do I take care of it... :) [Re: bluedane] #2555244 07/08/16 01:53 PM
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Try a rug first - assuming it works in the room somewhere. There are some acoustic panels made by ATS that are a little more decorative - about $50 for a 2' x 4'. We use them in conference rooms at work and it gets rid of that nasty echo chamber sound when we do speaker phone / conference calls.

Look up this "mirror" technique with placement of acoustic panels. Sound waves will be bouncing off the walls but the one you care about most is the ones that bounce and hit your ears (or your audience) so you put a mirror on the wall to figure out where it would bounce and put a panel there.

There's also a formula where you add up all the surface area of the room. I forget the recommendations and uses but 10% is typical for most applications, 20% for mixing studios or some other application - but then I've seen some mixing studios that are almost 100% covered.

But a piano room shouldn't be dead sounding like a mixing studio so don't go crazy with rugs and foam - just enough so you don't get that ringing echo.

Re: New piano! Now how do I take care of it... :) [Re: bluedane] #2555265 07/08/16 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by bluedane
[...]A couple of questions:
1. How important is environmental control (humidifiers, etc)? I live in Seattle and the temperatures don't vary all that much. I want to take care of it obviously, but I don't want to waste my money.

As has already been mentioned, humidity control is more important than temperature control. All-house humidifying is best, room humidifying is next. If you don't have great swings in humidity (our Victoria climate is not that different from that of Seattle), you shouldn't have too much to worry about. That said, I run three Venta AirWash humdifiers in the winter time to keep the humidity in my large living room and open hallways at about 40% to 45%.

Originally Posted by bluedane
2. The piano is on a hardwood floor. It sounds pretty bright (not bad) but I intend to break up the sound a bit, hopefully disperse it more than muffle it with cloth and rugs. Any suggestions? I am an amateur acoustics guy, so I'm happy to nerd out if you are into that kind of thing.

3. The piano is currently sitting on hardwood floor protectors which themselves have furry pads underneath them. This raises my pedals by about 3/4 of an inch and I can really tell the difference after an hour of playing. I can't be the first person to run into this; how do other people solve it?


A small rug under the piano will help with two - maybe even three - issues:
1) It may somewhat attenuate the sound if you find the piano too bright.
2) It will raise your foot enough that you will no longer feel the extra height of the pedals.
3) If you get a rug that is long enough for the bench to sit on as well, you will avoid scratching the floor from the constant shifting of the bench.

Originally Posted by bluedane
4. Suggestions on general maintenance? How do I keep this baby in good shape?


Get on good terms with a reliable technician to have your piano regularly tuned and serviced. That is your best insurance for long-term enjoyment of the instrument.

Regards,


BruceD
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Estonia 190
Re: New piano! Now how do I take care of it... :) [Re: bluedane] #2555269 07/08/16 03:46 PM
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For #3 did you get something like this?

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01DAEEG7U

Piano castor cups are pretty standard and they do raise the height just a little.

Re: New piano! Now how do I take care of it... :) [Re: David Farley] #2555283 07/08/16 04:44 PM
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bluedane Offline OP
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yes, those cups are more or less what I have.

Interestingly, the piano sales people said not to put fuzzy pads under them because the weight of the piano would press the fuzz into the floor and damage it. I was skeptical of this and put the fuzzy pads on anyway, but wonder if anyone else has heard this...?


Yamaha GC1M, Kurzweil K2500, Native Instruments Komplete Kontrol
Re: New piano! Now how do I take care of it... :) [Re: bluedane] #2555316 07/08/16 09:06 PM
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Quote
Interestingly, the piano sales people said not to put fuzzy pads under them because the weight of the piano would press the fuzz into the floor and damage it.


Wow, never seize to be amazed of what's being said out there...

Norbert bah


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Re: New piano! Now how do I take care of it... :) [Re: Norbert] #2555330 07/08/16 10:49 PM
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gnuboi Offline
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Well my cups have cracks in them, probably from when the piano was on carpet and there was uneven carpet below the cups.


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