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Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Katieji] #2937911 01/24/20 06:04 AM
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I have an RX-2 (bought new in 2005). The treble is not as singing as an Estonia. That is how it is. But it is said that recently Kawai has made their new pianos more brighter including the Shigeru models. Also they started using vertically laminated bridge. So I presume the new GX pianos have a brighter tone compared to older models.

I suggest you to cover the window behind the piano with heavy drapes. Also you might hang a few diffuser and absorber panels to the wall to the right side of the piano.

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Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: pianoloverus] #2937928 01/24/20 08:18 AM
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Originally Posted by SMA55
KatiejI disagree wholeheartedly with pianoloverus: a piano that sounds lovely in a showroom may very well need to be voiced once it’s in the unique acoustic environment of the room in which it’s placed in your home.
I didn't say that a piano that sounds good in the showroom doesn't need to be voiced in the home. In fact, I think that would be quite normal and definitely reasonable.


What you had actually said previously was:

Originally Posted by pianoloverus
I don't see bow moving the piano to your home should change the voicing.

I suppose it’s all a matter of how one interprets “change the voicing”. But since I apparently misinterpreted what you meant by that, my apologies to you.

Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Katieji] #2937974 01/24/20 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Katieji
...Dampp Chaser was installed in the store. I can't remember if I played it before or after installation.

I'd suggest confirming that the system is functioning properly. As a first test, get a hygrometer and put it inside the piano with the lid closed for at least a few hours and confirm the humidity is being maintained properly. I assume they told you to keep the lid down when not using it, and if possible keep a cover on it to help maintain the humidity level properly. You can also set the hygrometer under the piano on top of one of the beams between the ribs, so it's sensing in the same area as the dampp chaser humidistat.
If there is any kind of status light on the controller, see if it shows the system cycling on and off. You're probably needing to add water even though your climate is a bit humid right now, that's just a result of how the system works. So if you're not needing to add water, that could be a sign it's not working properly.


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Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Katieji] #2937992 01/24/20 11:04 AM
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Katieji- It’s sounds like you’re on the right path and I’m so relieved for you. It is the same piano, you’re using a Dampp Chaser, your competent tech has already made noticeable improvements, but a few more tweaks and the treble is on its way to meeting your expectations. Sometimes having a super sensitive ear can be a curse. I’ve always secretly wondered why how some piano people hear all the different tonal qualities of piano sound like a wine taster describing a wine. I don’t drink much wine because my taste buds just aren’t that sensitive. My ears apparently aren’t that sensitive either. I can’t hear my piano going out of tune even playing it every day. I use a phone app to check the tuning everyday, so I’m visually watching it drift. By not having as sensitive an ear as you do, I’ve always been thrilled with my piano upon delivery.


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Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: MarkL] #2938003 01/24/20 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by MarkL

I'd suggest confirming that the system is functioning properly.


This is not a bad idea. It crossed the back of my mind, reading this thread.


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Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: terminaldegree] #2938011 01/24/20 12:00 PM
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Originally Posted by terminaldegree
Originally Posted by MarkL

I'd suggest confirming that the system is functioning properly.


This is not a bad idea. It crossed the back of my mind, reading this thread.


Maybe I assume too much. Katieji said the Dampp Chaser was installed before delivery, I assumed they would give the new owner specific directions how to use the system properly and what the different lights indicate. That is a big assumption. I also assumed the competent tech would immediately notice if the Dampp Chaser system was working properly on his very first visit, but then again, that too is a big assumption. Big assumptions can and do often turn out to be wrong.


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Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Katieji] #2938013 01/24/20 12:02 PM
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It’s possible the humidifier and dehumidifier can be plugged in backwards, or the sensing unit is not placed well.


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Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Katieji] #2938206 01/24/20 07:38 PM
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I haven't checked with a hygrometer inside the piano, but when the yellow light flashed I added water + solution (about every 2 or 3 weeks in the winter, when they house is drier). Also I keep a Mexican blanket on the lid to protect from the little bit of sunlight that comes in at a certain time of day.
Hakki's suggestion of having a window covering on the bay window is a good one. I did hang a family heirloom quilt on the wall to the right of the window, but perhaps more is needed.
Hakki you also said that the treble on your Kawai RX-2 is not as singing as an Estonia, I guess the higher price/quality does make a difference...sigh...

Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Katieji] #2938276 01/25/20 02:00 AM
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After I had purchased my RX-2, years later during a touristic trip, I had a chance to visit the Estonia factory. Where I personally met with Dr. Indrek Laul, the owner of Estonia pianos, also a great concert pianist and a very fine gentleman.

Estonia pianos are really on a different level. They are hand crafted by meticulous care. They have that singing tone in the treble and also a rich full tone in tenor and bass.

Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Hakki] #2938320 01/25/20 08:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Hakki
After I had purchased my RX-2, years later during a touristic trip, I had a chance to visit the Estonia factory. Where I personally met with Dr. Indrek Laul, the owner of Estonia pianos, also a great concert pianist and a very fine gentleman.

Estonia pianos are really on a different level. They are hand crafted by meticulous care. They have that singing tone in the treble and also a rich full tone in tenor and bass.



Thank you. You made my month!


J & J
Estonia L190 Hidden Beauty
Casio Privia PX-330
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Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Katieji] #2938416 01/25/20 12:19 PM
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Katieji,

1) In your climate area the humidifier on the piano should be running about 80% (or more) of the time meaning that your fillups should be more on the order of about 10 days or so, however if you are augmenting things with a room humidifier that would reduce it (this is in fact recommended).

2) I always recommend to my clients that they keep a written record of their fills (time has a way of escaping our notice).

3) From what I see in your opening picture I would expect quite a bit of reflection coming from both the bay window and the wall. There is not much stuff there to absorb sound. Also, with the lid up much more is being emitted into the room.

4) You should have a complete cover on the piano and totally close it up when not in use if you really want good humidity control.

Pwg


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Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Katieji] #2938444 01/25/20 01:35 PM
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Treating the room walls with acoustic panels might help too.

https://www.amazon.ca/Acoustic-Panels-Damping-Absorbing-Reduction/dp/B0785HTHSY?th=1&psc=1

Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Katieji] #2938450 01/25/20 01:47 PM
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Katieji,
I think Peter is on to something in item #3. You are directly projecting sound onto a wall that is only a piano width away. I have found some pianos are very sensitive as to how they are placed in the room. Your tech could be trying to voice your piano to your room and the piano's current position in it, which may at best produce mixed results. I would start out seeing what the sound is like with the piano positioned with sound directed towards your 17' wall and expect to try other variations.


Last edited by Sanfrancisco; 01/25/20 01:55 PM.
Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Sanfrancisco] #2938454 01/25/20 01:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Sanfrancisco
Katieji,
I think Peter is on to something in item #3. You are directly projecting sound onto a wall that is only a piano width away. I have found some pianos are very sensitive as to how they are placed in the room. Your tech could be trying to voice your piano to your room and the piano's current position in it, which may be untenable. I would start out seeing what the sound is like with the piano positioned with sound directed towards your 17' wall and expect to try other variations.

Another option would be a large bookcase. Bookcases are the poor man's diffusor. A diffusor breaks up coherent reflections reducing the enhancement of particular notes (frequencies) and the reduction of others. If the room is too live try hanging rugs or tapestries. Large hard parallel surfaces will also produce standing waves that will make some notes (frequencies) louder and others softer. Changing how the piano is oriented will have less impact on this because sound is omnidirectional. Be aware that ceilings and floors are also large parallel surfaces and rugs can make a very big difference. Good luck.

Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Katieji] #2938502 01/25/20 04:21 PM
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Thank you Peter and Steve. Very interesting. I don't have a room humidifier but this winter hasn't been as cold as some. Humidity in the room hasn't gone below 32% to my knowledge. I do keep the lid closed when not playing (well not completely, I do keep music on the stand), and I rarely play with the lid completely open because the sound waves on some notes bother my ear. It's not nearly as bad with the lid partly open.
As for positioning the piano in the room, as you can appreciate it's not that easy with a rectangular shaped room (and somewhat narrow at that) also trying to keep the piano out of the sun. I have a quilt on one wall, a couple of meditation cushions, a very thin area rug with no underpad and a bookcase full of scores behind my bench and another case full of CDs near the window. I also didn't mention that the living room (where the piano is located) is open to the dining room (with a bit of an archway between).
I tried placing a couple of pieces of rolled up foam near the window, didn't make a difference. There are about half a dozen notes in the treble that are either too shrill or dead sounding. I could try putting an underpad under the carpet but how the heck do you get anything underneath an 800-pound (I'm guessing) beast?

Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Katieji] #2938513 01/25/20 04:46 PM
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You can do another simple test. Open the lid to full stick and hang a thick blanket on the lid or have someone hold it so that the sound is confined and does not reflect from the right side walls. Repeat the same test with holding the blanket in the back, front and left side of the piano.

Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Katieji] #2938521 01/25/20 05:04 PM
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For the dead sounding notes you can make this test:

Press hand hold the key without playing the note, now pluck the string like a guitar string (try not to touch the string with your bare finger) and listen if the sustain is longer. If it is then your technician might check the action.

Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: pianoloverus] #2938529 01/25/20 05:22 PM
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Originally Posted by pianoloverus


But, as I said, I would be surprised if a piano changed as much as the OP indicated, i.e. going from fine/acceptable in the showroom to a state where the treble has an "uneven sound, with notes going from super bright/shrill, to almost dead sounding (like a toy piano) to no volume."


On the contrary, that's exactly what I'd expect of a smallish room that isn't cooperating acoustically - particularly the uneveness - where the location of the player relative to modes of particular frequencies can easily create that effect (comb filtering). Since it is the high end that is giving difficulties, it's easier to experiment with fixes, since absorption of high frequencies is a lot easier to trial than interrupting the creation of low end standing waves. First thing I would do is hang a thick quilt or comforter n the wall directly facing the open lid and overlapping with where the player sits. Even better, drag a queen size mattress in and flip it up on its side in that position. Don't worry, this is temporary, but it will let you know if you are on the right track. High frequencies can be reasonably absorbed with soft materials of reasonable mass. Mattress against the wall and a quilt or comforter tacked up on the ceiling will give you even more control. You also want to consider the wall behind the player.

If the room ends up sounding too dead with all that absorption, but the unevenness of the high end is corrected, you'll want to find something to scatter the high frequencies in random directions rather than simply absorbing them, in order to prevent standing waves from creating interference patterns. That should prevent the comb filtering which is causing some frequencies to ring out and others to sound dead. And definitely experiment with moving the piano around some. One way to approach that is to have someone else play the piano and move around the room yourself, hearing how the sound changes with location. Then try placing the piano such that you'll be sitting near to where you think it sounds best. Since the piano is, itself, a significantly reflective surface, things are going to move as you move the piano, but it is still a good place to start.

Finally, don't discount that the low end is actually being reinforced by parallel surfaces (walls and floor/ceiling), which is particularly problematic in smaller rooms. The boomy low end can make the high end sound weak. It's hard to trap bass with improvised methods, but get heavy things with irregular shapes in the corners of the room. Sofa pillows stacked up as high as you can get them in the corners works well in a pinch.

Once you've experimented sufficiently, find yourself a home theatre store that specializes in custom installation and explain to them your problem and which experiments helped to correct things. They'll be able to set you up with bass traps, absorption, and diffusion which looks nice and does the same job. THEN have your piano re-voiced, since having it custom voiced for your room has likely caused it to be uneven once the acoustics are corrected.

Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Katieji] #2938533 01/25/20 05:32 PM
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Katieji, My experience with a previous 6' Schimmel is that changes in position, even relatively slight made a noticeable difference in individual treble notes' loudness and timbre. On the other hand changes in position seems to make no difference on my current Estonia's sound. You can easily move your piano alone by slightly jacking up each leg one at a time with a $15 Amazon hydraulic bottle jack. Then slip a piece of 1/2" smooth plywood under each leg. Turn the caster in the direction you want to go, lower it and the piano will then freely roll with little pushes. It would certainly be interesting to see if minor movements, with the piano in the same basic orientation, would make a difference. I have done this numerous times with pianos on our carpet.
As several posts above note you can do a lot of testing, easily and cheaply before bringing in the tech again. The room size parameters mentioned above by ideasculptor above make a lot of sense. Keep us posted.








Last edited by Sanfrancisco; 01/25/20 05:41 PM.
Re: New Kawai GX-2 disappointment [Re: Katieji] #2938535 01/25/20 05:35 PM
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To test the ceiling you might have two people hold the thick blanket above yor head.

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