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Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? #2653751
06/15/17 08:50 AM
06/15/17 08:50 AM
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 117
Fort Walton Beach, FL
Paul in FWB Offline OP
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I've been browsing DPs on www.thomannmusic.com. It obviously interfaces with Thomann's HQ in Germany.

Including shipping, the prices are better than Kraft, Sweetwater, and similar online sellers. They even have some models not available in the US (like the CA17).

Has anyone here in the US ordered from them? Can you describe the buying experience?

I'm also concerned about whether the models they ship to the US are compatible with standard US 110V outlets.

Thanks,

Paul


Proud Owner of a Kawai Rosina (SI-16)
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Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Paul in FWB] #2653756
06/15/17 08:58 AM
06/15/17 08:58 AM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 6,389
Vught, The Netherlands
Dave Horne Offline
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Have you factored in the duty \ import charge?

Imported items (outside the EU) for me incur a 25 percent import charge and a 21 percent VAT.

If you want to save money and skirt the regulations, have someone who is stationed in Europe bring back the piano in their household goods.


website | mp3 files | Yamaha AvantGrand N3 | Roland RD 2000 | Sennheiser HD 598 headphones
Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Paul in FWB] #2653790
06/15/17 10:29 AM
06/15/17 10:29 AM
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Tom Fort Offline
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I looked into buying a VPC-1 through Thomann, as the disparity in price between the VPC-1 in the US and Europe is insultingly high. I'm not in a rush, so I'm waiting to see what else comes out from other makers down the road. A controller-only version of the RD-2000 for $1,500 or so would be very tempting...

I could take a trip to Europe and buy the VPC-1 for the price difference, which for me ensures that I won't buy one from a U.S. dealer. I don't know what Kawai are thinking.

Above 35 pounds or so shipping costs become higher. I would certainly consider buying lighter items from Thomann, and items that are less likely to be damaged in shipping.

Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Tom Fort] #2653796
06/15/17 10:45 AM
06/15/17 10:45 AM
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Posts: 6,389
Vught, The Netherlands
Dave Horne Offline
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I could take a trip to Europe and buy the VPC-1 for the price difference, which for me ensures that I won't buy one from a U.S. dealer. I don't know what Kawai are thinking.

Sir, do you have anything to declare?


website | mp3 files | Yamaha AvantGrand N3 | Roland RD 2000 | Sennheiser HD 598 headphones
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Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Dave Horne] #2653816
06/15/17 11:26 AM
06/15/17 11:26 AM
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similar Offline
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Originally Posted by Dave Horne
Have you factored in the duty \ import charge?

Imported items (outside the EU) for me incur a 25 percent import charge and a 21 percent VAT.

Do you know how to calculate such charges? Do you know how such charges are made; does the buyer need to arrange arrange to pay for such charges ahead of time or will they be billed to the buyer? Any other important information about the procedure? grin

Thanks


Beethoven, Bach -> Kawai CA-97 -> Garritan CFX Full -> Neumann Klein and Hummel 310s
Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Paul in FWB] #2653827
06/15/17 11:51 AM
06/15/17 11:51 AM
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Raleigh, North Carolina
MacMacMac Offline
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Tom: Where do you live such that a trip to Europe is cheaper than the Europe piano-price disparity?

My last trip to Europe (Miami to Edinburgh, via Paris layover) cost me $900 round-trip.
And, as Dave points out, there are customs duties to pay for imported goods.

Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Paul in FWB] #2653831
06/15/17 12:00 PM
06/15/17 12:00 PM
Joined: Jul 2004
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Vught, The Netherlands
Dave Horne Offline
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https://www.dutycalculator.com/new-import-duty-and-tax-calculation/

The above link may help.

I've lived so long in the Netherlands that even though I know that many items in the US are less expensive, it's not worth the time and hassle to try and save a few dollars.


website | mp3 files | Yamaha AvantGrand N3 | Roland RD 2000 | Sennheiser HD 598 headphones
Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Paul in FWB] #2653835
06/15/17 12:05 PM
06/15/17 12:05 PM
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Germany
JoBert Offline
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Try searching this forum. I think I remember someone posting that he went ahead and ordered a piano, only for the order to be cancelled by Thomann, because the box would have been too large (or maybe too heavy?) for overseas shipping.

But I also remember that someone from the acoustic subforum successfully ordered a piano bench (a rather solid/heavy one) from Thomann to the US.

Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Dave Horne] #2653837
06/15/17 12:11 PM
06/15/17 12:11 PM
Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 6,825
Raleigh, North Carolina
MacMacMac Offline
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That's a great find, Dave.
Originally Posted by Dave Horne
I did a hypothetical import of a $2000 digital piano from Germany to USA/North Carolina. Import duties only $72, plus a $2 merchandise handling fee. I'm quite surprised. I thought it would be much, much higher.

The downside of that site is that you get only ONE lookup. After that you have to pay $5 per.

Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: MacMacMac] #2653894
06/15/17 04:21 PM
06/15/17 04:21 PM
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 117
Fort Walton Beach, FL
Paul in FWB Offline OP
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Originally Posted by MacMacMac
The downside of that site is that you get only ONE lookup. After that you have to pay $5 per.


You can also look up US duty rates in the Harmonized Tariff Schedule: https://www.usitc.gov/tata/hts/bychapter/index.htm

Duty on musical instruments is in Chapter 92: http://hts.usitc.gov/view/Chapter%2092

On page 5 of Chapter 92 is Heading 9207, "Musical instruments, the sound of which is produced, or must be amplified, electrically" Under that is 9207.10.00 "Keyboard instruments, other than accordions" for which the rate of duty is 5.4%.

There are a number of countries of origin for which duty is not charged for electric keyboard instruments - including Australia, Canada, South Korea, Mexico and Singapore - but Germany is not among them. You'll see a column showing a 40% duty rate; that's for the products of Cuba and North Korea.

Paul


Proud Owner of a Kawai Rosina (SI-16)
Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Paul in FWB] #2653952
06/15/17 08:42 PM
06/15/17 08:42 PM
Joined: Sep 2007
Posts: 14,363
Hamamatsu, Japan
Kawai James Offline
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Hello Paul,

As JoBert notes, Thomann has a maximum weight restriction on products sold outside of Europe. So while it may be possible to buy a piano bench or even a stage piano (I recall a customer in Australia purchased a B-stock Kawai MP10 from Thomann a few years ago), I believe full-sized console pianos will be too heavy, leading to the product being automatically cancelled after the order is placed.

Originally Posted by Paul in FWB
I'm also concerned about whether the models they ship to the US are compatible with standard US 110V outlets.


Models that use a built-in transformer probably will not function correction without alterations by an electrical engineer, however models that use a power adaptor should be universal, provided the correct power plug is used.

However, please bear in mind that an instrument purchased from an online store based in Germany, will need to be returned to that country in order to receive any servicing/support under warranty.

Kind regards,
James
x


Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.
Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Paul in FWB] #2653954
06/15/17 08:45 PM
06/15/17 08:45 PM
Joined: May 2013
Posts: 512
Bay Area CA
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pwl Offline
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Thomann may very well cancel an order for a heavy digital piano to be shipped to the U.S. - I don't know. However, they state a flat shipping rate to the U.S. of just over $33.00. Except . . . there's a weight limit of 31kg (about 68 lbs) - so a VPC1 would be over the limit. They say they'll calculate the shipping cost and confirm in an email. I've sent 'em an email.

PS: I ordered a microphone from them some time back - process was easy and it arrived just fine.

Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: pwl] #2653959
06/15/17 09:02 PM
06/15/17 09:02 PM
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 117
Fort Walton Beach, FL
Paul in FWB Offline OP
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Paul in FWB  Offline OP
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Originally Posted by Kawai James
...bear in mind that an instrument purchased from an online store based in Germany, will need to be returned to that country in order to receive any servicing/support under warranty.


Excellent point, James. And that's the deal breaker.

Originally Posted by pwl
there's a weight limit of 31kg (about 68 lbs) - so a VPC1 would be over the limit.


Thomann's listing for the VPC1 lists the weight as 29.5 kg, just within the $33 shipping range.

Paul


Proud Owner of a Kawai Rosina (SI-16)
Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Paul in FWB] #2653995
06/16/17 12:36 AM
06/16/17 12:36 AM
Joined: May 2013
Posts: 512
Bay Area CA
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pwl Offline
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Originally Posted by Paul in FWB

Thomann's listing for the VPC1 lists the weight as 29.5 kg, just within the $33 shipping range.

Paul

I'm pretty sure that's the weight of the VPC1 itself, not the shipping weight.

Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Paul in FWB] #2654167
06/16/17 04:06 PM
06/16/17 04:06 PM
Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 6,825
Raleigh, North Carolina
MacMacMac Offline
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I think Dave Horne has the only workable solution for this situation:
Quote
... have someone who is stationed in Europe bring back the piano in their household goods.
But even then there remains:
- Voltage incompatibility
- No warranty

My take is: just don't do it.

Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Paul in FWB] #2654194
06/16/17 06:57 PM
06/16/17 06:57 PM
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tnsettlemo Offline
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Just emailed them. Can't believe the price differences on the Yamaha YDP 163, CLP 635, and CLP 645. Over a thousand off!!! I live in the United States and looked up VAT and there is none from the UK to the United States. I contacted them and asked about shipping and VAT to get the final price. We'll see...

Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Paul in FWB] #2654207
06/16/17 08:29 PM
06/16/17 08:29 PM
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Greater Chicago Metro Area
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EPW Offline
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As MacMacMac said you will not get a WARRANTY. If you need service it will cost you. How about supporting your local dealer smile


All these years playing and I still consider myself a novice.
Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: EPW] #2654235
06/16/17 10:36 PM
06/16/17 10:36 PM
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Bay Area CA
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Originally Posted by EPW
As MacMacMac said you will not get a WARRANTY. If you need service it will cost you. How about supporting your local dealer smile

I'll make one point re the Kawai VPC1 (and I understand tnsettlemo is talking about Yamaha, not Kawai): There IS no local dealer! Even in the SF Bay Area (that is to say, a large metropolitan area) the one store that used to display the VPC1 no longer does. Not much to support if local dealers won't display a product.

I understand it takes just a little bit more set up to display and demo the VPC1. But my guess, and I may be completely off-base here, is that Kawai has not been aggressive/imaginative in putting in place a program to motivate dealers to display the VPC1. Which is a damn shame.

Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Paul in FWB] #2654238
06/16/17 11:10 PM
06/16/17 11:10 PM
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MacMacMac Offline
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For purchasing a local dealer matters. But for servicing it's not relevant. You don't need a retailer for repairs. You need a repair shop.

I don't know what Kawai does about that. But I know Yamaha trains and certifies repair personnel.

Hey KJ: What does Kawai do?

Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: Paul in FWB] #2654267
06/17/17 02:57 AM
06/17/17 02:57 AM
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Authorized warranty service outlets for a major brand can be dodgy too. There is one (not Kawaii) within driving distance from me that looks like someone working out of a shabby private residence. I used to believe that auto dealership's mechanics were the cream of the crop also.

Re: Ordering from Thomann for US buyers? [Re: pwl] #2654704
06/18/17 08:50 PM
06/18/17 08:50 PM
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Originally Posted by pwl
There IS no local dealer! Even in the SF Bay Area (that is to say, a large metropolitan area) the one store that used to display the VPC1 no longer does. Not much to support if local dealers won't display a product.


Did you ask the retailer why they no longer display the VPC1, or if they would be getting another unit?

Originally Posted by pwl
I understand it takes just a little bit more set up to display and demo the VPC1.


Yes, this is the main reason: No built-in speakers and no built-in sounds.

Originally Posted by pwl
But my guess, and I may be completely off-base here, is that Kawai has not been aggressive/imaginative in putting in place a program to motivate dealers to display the VPC1. Which is a damn shame.


The VPC1 appeals to a niche customer base, many of whom will likely purchase the product from an online retailer, because even - without touching the keys - they'll know that it offers the most realistic keyboard action available in a controller.

The dealer profit for a VPC1 is relatively low compared to other models, while the additional investment required to properly display a board (stand, speakers, audio interface, computer, software, staff training) is relatively high. I cannot speak for the dealer you refer to, but perhaps they found that the majority of customers interested in their store VPC1 setup, came to test the board for an hour or two, only to quietly leave and most likely order the product online for $50 less.

I'm a big fan of the VPC1 and would love more dealers to show this product in their stores. However, I accept that it appeals to a niche audience, and that some dealers may prefer to dedicate the floor space to other models that are profitable and/or easier to demonstrate and therefore sell.

Kind regards,
James
x


Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.

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