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Bosendorfer 130 // 200 #2841818
04/24/19 01:57 AM
04/24/19 01:57 AM
Joined: Apr 2019
Posts: 3
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tibbaw Offline OP
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tibbaw  Offline OP
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Joined: Apr 2019
Posts: 3
Hi All,

I would need your advice on the following points. I'd like to buy a piano for my spouse, most oriented toward jazz than classical music. She quite likes the Bosendorfer sound, which triggered my search for such an instrument. At this moment, I managed to find (for about the same price, the 130 a tad cheaper though) either a New upright Bosendorfer 130 or a Used Bosendorfer 200, 1997 in excellent condition [40k eur ~ 45k usd].

1. What would you recommend between the two ? Does this upright really sound "like a grand" ?
2. I never came across a Steingraeber and sohne, but read very good reviews on it. Is it comparable to the Bosendorfer ?

ps : 45k usd is the max budget we can afford.

Thank you,

Last edited by tibbaw; 04/24/19 02:00 AM.
Re: Bosendorfer 130 // 200 [Re: tibbaw] #2841831
04/24/19 04:14 AM
04/24/19 04:14 AM
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 3,054
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joe80 Offline
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joe80  Offline
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Joined: Nov 2009
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It seems that you perhaps need to broaden your search. A 22 year old Bösendorfer 200 in excellent condition should be a good piano, and if after a technical inspection the piano is good, you're prepared to pay the price, and your wife likes it, then I guess there's no reason not to buy it. That said, there are many beautiful pianos available to you in that price range, so don't limit yourself to only two instruments.

The Bösendorfer 130 is a beautiful piano as well. Does it have the sound of a grand? No probably not, but it is a beautiful sound in its own right, since it's one of the finest pianos available in any class. There are many advantages to having a high quality upright - not least that they're easier to move if you need to move them (from room to room or house to house), they're easier to sell if you have to sell them, and they're less imposing. There's also a great advantage of buying a brand new piano over a second hand one, including the manufacturer's warranty. Finally, there has been an improvement in Bösendorfer's quality over the last 15 years and especially since Yamaha took over the company are making some truly special pianos again. That's not to say a '97 model won't be spectacular, because it also comes down to individual pianos.

Good luck!

Re: Bosendorfer 130 // 200 [Re: joe80] #2841833
04/24/19 04:25 AM
04/24/19 04:25 AM
Joined: Apr 2019
Posts: 3
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tibbaw Offline OP
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tibbaw  Offline OP
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Joined: Apr 2019
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Thank you Joe80 for this reply, very useful.

I dot not disagree on the fact that we would need to broaden our search. What pianos would to come to your mind in that respect ?

Thanks

Re: Bosendorfer 130 // 200 [Re: tibbaw] #2841914
04/24/19 10:56 AM
04/24/19 10:56 AM
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Posts: 3,054
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joe80 Offline
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I don't know the prices in your area, since it seems that all over the world retail prices vary widely. For instance, in the USA, Yamaha seems much more expensive than in the UK.

Here are some of my thoughts though:

A friend of mine who is a piano teacher and chamber music pianist in Frankfurt has a Yamaha C2 Silent. He says it's a wonderful piano and provides him with everything he needs. I agree the C2 and now C2X are excellent instruments, not quite in the same class as a Bösendorfer perhaps, but there's the advantage of buying new. Plus, with the right preparation these are very versatile and beautiful pianos. The C3x and C6X even more so.

I have a rebuilt Blüthner Model 6 from 1912, and one from 1894. They've both undergone an extensive rebuild including new soundboards and tuning planks, so they are functionally new instruments. They have a very warm tone that pianos of that period were prized for, and they have great clarity. There is quite a difference between playing my pianos and playing a new piano, but not one that manifests as any kind of limitation. For comparison, if you go to Blüthner's in the UK, a rebuilt model 6 will cost you somewhere in the region of £30,000 which puts it in the price range of a Yamaha C5/C6. A new Blüthner model 6 has a retail of £69,000 but I don't know what discounts are available.

I've been incredibly impressed with every Shigeru Kawai piano I've played. They are wonderful instruments, so clear and singing, yet very warm. They are superbly made and in the UK at least come in at a very sensible price. If I'm not mistaken they are about half the price of the equivalent sized Steinway. The Shigeru S2K I think it's called is a particular favourite, with a beautiful responsive action and a tone that gives any pianist anything they could want in a practice piano. Again, the larger ones give you more, but are more expensive too. The SK6 in my opinion is better than many Steinway Bs I've played.

If you want to stick with uprights I'd recommend the Bösendorfer 130, and I know the Hamburg Steinway K and C. Bechstein Model 8 are also absolutely wonderful pianos. I also think that the Yamaha YUS5 hits a sweet spot between quality and price, and is as good as many pianos much more expensive than it.

As far as American pianos are concerned, I've only ever played a few NYC Steinways and they haven't been that well prepared, so it's difficult for me to give them a fair review. That will change hopefully when I move to the states later this year. I've never played a Baldwin, Mason and Hamlin, or Charles Walter so I can't tell you anything about them. A friend of mine has rebuilt one Baldwin and one Mason and Hamlin and said they were exceptionally well made pianos.

Those are the pianos I've found to be very consistent every time I've played them, and that fall somewhere in your price range as far as I'm aware according to UK prices.

I do have to stress though, the make of the piano is important but not as important as the individual piano. The next incredibly important thing is what condition the piano is in. If a piano is new, the condition is STILL an important question because sometimes new pianos are not properly regulated, voiced, and tuned, and have some issues that haven't been addressed by dealer prep. You need to find a good technician who can help you decide if the instrument you're choosing is right for you. The sound of the piano comes from the maker, the technician, and the pianist, and all three are equally important in that equation. I am quite a large person, with heavy arms, and while yes I can and do play lightly, I prefer a piano with a more mellow tone that has the power in reserve rather than in my face. Some other pianists prefer to have the massive sound more easily accessible. Some pianists suit warm and lyrical, some suit bright and light, etc etc. You get the picture.

Hope that helps!

Re: Bosendorfer 130 // 200 [Re: tibbaw] #2841915
04/24/19 10:58 AM
04/24/19 10:58 AM
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 3,054
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joe80 Offline
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joe80  Offline
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Posts: 3,054
PS Steingraeber is comparable to Bösendorfer in terms of quality and price, but they are different characters.

If Bösendorfer is warm and lyrical, and perhaps mellow, the Steingraeber tends to be brighter and clearer, with an emphasis on clarity. They are both absolutely beautiful pianos. Steingraeber make some absolutely spectacular uprights too.

Re: Bosendorfer 130 // 200 [Re: tibbaw] #2841919
04/24/19 11:21 AM
04/24/19 11:21 AM
Joined: Apr 2019
Posts: 3
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tibbaw Offline OP
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tibbaw  Offline OP
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Joined: Apr 2019
Posts: 3
Wow, thanks for this extremely detailed reply Joe80, much appreciated !!


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