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Hello everyone:

I’m new to this forum. Recently I’m shopping for a piano for my daughter who has taken piano lessons for a year. At first, I was trying to get an used one, but I have spent three months on the local Craigslist and dealers, nothing I like show up. And also because i’m not an expert on the piano or know any technician, I have decided to go with a new one. Now here’s my options:

1. Kawai k300
2. Kawai k500
3. Charle R Walter 1500
4. Kawai GL-30 baby grand

Kawai k300 has the best price, but it is the smallest one among those options, i’m afraid we have to upgrade it after several years. K500 is my first choice, however the price is not good enough compare to what I heard from others, which is more than $3000 more than k300.

I like the Walter as well, because I heard a lot of good things about it. Its price is a little bit higher than k500.

All k300, k500 and 1500 I could get a new one on these price. And they are fall fall into our budget.

I also get a very good offer on the Kawai-gl 30 baby grand. But it’s a floor sample which has been stand in the showroom for around 2 years. The price is only a couple thousand more than the k500. Even though it’s over our budget, the discount is really appealing.

I think any of these pianos would meet our current needs, but considering the price and long run, which one do you think it’s a better investment?

Thank you

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Any of these pianos will last a lifetime. No upgrade will be necessary.

Having said that, playing on a grand piano is a special experience. If you have the desire, space, and the means, go for it! They are also beautiful to look at.

If you mean by "investment" as in your child's education, a grand piano of course is the best. If you mean by re-sale value after many years, they depreciate at about the same rate.

Last edited by redfish1901; 06/01/19 09:02 PM.
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I would not pass in on that GL-30 just because it's been a floor model for a couple of years. The best explanation I can offer is if you read this thread that's concurrently running here on PW.
Also, since your daughter is the one taking lessons, be sure she likes whatever you choose. Kind of obvious, but sometimes easy to overlook. Good luck in your quest!

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A floor model is often a great buy - as long as it hasn't been scratched or whatever. They often get serviced intensely to make them feel and sound at the top of their model - they want it just right because that will sell pianos. Just check that it's still got a full warranty applicable.

Each would be great pianos for your daughter - and should last a long long time.


Alan from Queensland, Australia (and Clara - my Grotrian Concert & Allen Organ (CF-17a)).
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Pick one that you like, can afford, and fits in your house.


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Thank you for your opinion. Saying “ Investment” I do mean for my kids’s music education. I know they are all good pianos, but since the prices are different, I just wondering if some choices are worth for the extra money.

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An upright is perfectly adequate for up to ... 89 years at least. My Mum played at Licentiate level, but only ever had an upright.

I did my Associate exams practising on the equivalent of the K500. It's still in the family, my daughter got it when it was 30+ years old when I got my first grand. 4 of us learned extensively on it, it was used for band practices, choir practice, rehearsals for various accompaniments I did - and played every day almost just for pleasure. It's fairly worn by now after all that - but my daughter's children are now learning on it.

Each of these will be good to play - just keep it well tuned, and after it's a year or 3 old, get your technician to do a regulation and voicing - which will cost about 2-3 times as much as a regular tune for an upright, maybe a bit more for a grand. That will keep it in good enjoyable playing condition.

If she ends up being exceptional after a few more years learning - that piano will still be great for her - though sometimes we "reward" exceptional children with a better piano - but worry about that then. 99% of the time, it never becomes an issue.


Alan from Queensland, Australia (and Clara - my Grotrian Concert & Allen Organ (CF-17a)).
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IMO it is better to stretch your budget a bit and go for a grand of 5'8" size minimum or bigger.
For example the GL40 instead of the GL30. Forget about the uprights.

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Thank you. Yes, you’re right. My daughter’s opinion should matters. I asked her, and she said she prefers a grand. I think a grand is a dream for most players.

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Thank you for your information and reminder. I have asked. The dealer said it would have 10 years warranty from the day I purchase.

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I wasn’t planning to buy a grand at the beginning. Because I think an upright is good enough for my daughter, and also with my budget, I could get a better upright than a grand. I’m thinking about the GL
-30 just because I got a deal on this floor sample. And I don’t think I could get the same discount on the GL-40.

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Originally Posted by BigIslandGuy
Also, since your daughter is the one taking lessons, be sure she likes whatever you choose. Kind of obvious, but sometimes easy to overlook.
Someone with only one year's experience, especially if(?) they are very young, is usually not astute enough to be a major factor in selecting a piano. For example, she might not like the piano because she's not used to the touch or because it sounds different from the one she's used to although the touch/tone might be considered excellent by a more experienced pianist. I'd let her play the final candidates for at least a half hour each as it takes time for anyone to adjust to a new piano. Bottom line: I think she should have some but not major input. You could ask her teacher for advice also.

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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Originally Posted by BigIslandGuy
Also, since your daughter is the one taking lessons, be sure she likes whatever you choose. Kind of obvious, but sometimes easy to overlook.
Someone with only one year's experience, especially if(?) they are very young, is usually not astute enough to be a major factor in selecting a piano. For example, she might not like the piano because she's not used to the touch or because it sounds different from the one she's used to although the touch/tone might be considered excellent by a more experienced pianist. I'd let her play the final candidates for at least a half hour each as it takes time for anyone to adjust to a new piano. Bottom line: I think she should have some but not major input. You could ask her teacher for advice also.

Agree. I forgot she's only been playing a year.

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Thank you for sharing your story. I’ll keep in mind about the regulation and voicing. And I agree that 99% chance I do not need to worry about upgrading the piano just because it’s not good enough for my daughter’s skill.

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Thank you for your advice. Her teacher said any of these pianos is a good option. But herself loves the kawai better. Her only requirement for the student is getting an acoustic piano, not an digital one.

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Thank you for all your opinions and advice. Obviously any of these pianos is good enough for my daughter. I know it might not right for shopping a piano, I just hope I could spend my money on the best value. Because it’s a big investment for our family. Therefore, I wasn’t sure if I should spend the least on a budget one, or add some extra money to go with a higher end.
As all you said, any of these pianos could last a lifetime long. So it’s a big decision.

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There are many here on PianoWorld forums that argue a big upright is better than a “baby grand”. But if your daughter prefers a smaller grand to an upright and the sound is wonderful to you and your daughter’s ears, go for it. A floor/display model is for me is an excellent value, especially with the discount. The piano has been prepped as much as the dealer preps any of his/her pianos already. That piano has “settled in” and sounds closer to what it would sound like after a few weeks in your home. The action will be less “stiff” and more like the Kawai action is built to be. The piano already has had several tunings. Any tiny scratches, the dealer can fix before delivery plus if the new grand gets tiny scratches in your home it won’t be as emotionally devastating because it wasn’t the first. I always prefer acoustic pianos that have been on the dealer’s floor being played and maintained to the ones still in the crate. Best of Luck!


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Thank you for your suggestions. Yes, my biggest concern was if the baby grand worth the extra money than the big upright. But you’re right, how the player feels is important too. My daughter is really in love with the grand, even though it’s only a baby grand. So I think I would pick the GL-30, not only because I got a big discount, but also it makes her dream come true.

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Originally Posted by mylife5566
Thank you for your suggestions. Yes, my biggest concern was if the baby grand worth the extra money than the big upright. But you’re right, how the player feels is important too. My daughter is really in love with the grand, even though it’s only a baby grand. So I think I would pick the GL-30, not only because I got a big discount, but also it makes her dream come true.


For me, there was a non-tangible benefit to buying a piano I loved... I want to practice just to hear how it sounds and to touch the keys. Buy the one your daughter loves. Don’t let it get away.


"Music, rich, full of feeling, not soulless, is like a crystal on which the sun falls and brings forth from it a whole rainbow" - F. Chopin
"I never dreamt with my own two hands I could touch the sky" - Sappho

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I agree. This is a great benefit to motivate her learning. Thanks

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