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Yamaha M1E vs Yamaha M302?
#2961715 03/30/20 12:36 AM
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Hi All,

I'm reaching out to the hive mind of experts and piano players to get your opinion on a potential purchase. A little background: I grew up playing piano from ages 5-12, I stopped for 20 years and recently picked it up again. My love for it came back full-force and it's something that I know will be a part of my life for good. I wish to continue learning and growing as a player for my own self-fulfillment.

I'm in the market for a beginner/ intermediate upright piano. Right now I am talking with two experienced piano tuners/ sellers. Option #1 is a Yamaha M302 upright - built in 1992 - stated "All Original parts, made in Japan, excellent condition" includes tuning but no delivery, selling for $1800. Option #2 is a Yamaha M1E - built in 1993 - stated "excellent condition" and includes both delivery and tuning for $2995.

I haven't played or heard the pianos in person yet. I plan to do so next week.

In the meantime, do you have any advice on the difference between the two pianos? Is the M1E worth $1K more than the M302? Any general thoughts or lookouts?

Thanks in advance!

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Re: Yamaha M1E vs Yamaha M302?
Mickey B #2961732 03/30/20 01:48 AM
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You should probably have an independent tech check out any piano you seriously consider purchasing, even if the seller is a piano tuner.

Both pianos (when new) were suitable for beginning and intermediate players.

If the piano serial number begins with a "T" it was built in Georgia, USA and not in Japan.

I could be wrong, but I believe both models were being built in the US during the earrly 1990s.

In my opinion, the price of the M1E (with tuning and delivery) is too high, and the price of the M302 (with tuning) is reasonable (some here may say it is still a tad too high) - depending, again, on the condition of the piano.

While info regarding both models is sparse on the internet, I can find no evidence that the M1E would be worth $1K more than the M302. I don't know what each model sold for when new.

Try them both out, and don't allow yourself to be pressured by the sellers to make an immediate decision.


Mason and Hamlin BB - 91640
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Re: Yamaha M1E vs Yamaha M302?
Mickey B #2961733 03/30/20 01:52 AM
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Is this the piano you are considering for $2,995?

https://www.ebay.com/itm/264658760924

And I'm guessing this is the other one.....

https://www.ebay.com/itm/1992-Yamaha-M302-console-piano/264614748068

I apologize in advance if these aren't the correct instruments. smile

Last edited by Carey; 03/30/20 01:58 AM.

Mason and Hamlin BB - 91640
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Re: Yamaha M1E vs Yamaha M302?
Carey #2961738 03/30/20 02:07 AM
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Thanks for this, Carey. I really appreciate the insight. Yeah, I was wondering if the M1E was worth the difference in price. It seems like a big jump from the M302. And yes, that eBay link you found is indeed the piano I'm interested in. Nice sleuthing. Any thoughts on it?

Re: Yamaha M1E vs Yamaha M302?
Mickey B #2961739 03/30/20 02:12 AM
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FYI –

Here's the link for the Yamaha M302 for $1800:
https://losangeles.craigslist.org/lgb/msg/7097671738.html

And here, for the Yamaha M1E for $2995:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/264658760924

Re: Yamaha M1E vs Yamaha M302?
Mickey B #2961805 03/30/20 09:28 AM
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Both are built in the US, not Japan.
One is fairly expensive, and who knows what “reconditioned” means (typically the focus is on cosmetics). Pianos without toe blocks are typically less physically stable, if you live in an environment where kids or animals might knock into the piano. The other piano is less cleaned up, and that leg design is very fragile and susceptible to moving damage if not treated very carefully. Both are console sized, and I generally recommend trying to find a studio (45”) or taller one for better sound and touch— although I like Yamahas, their consoles never really wowed me.

These may be worth a try, but I’d keep searching for other options in this price range besides just brand “Y”.


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Re: Yamaha M1E vs Yamaha M302?
Mickey B #2961874 03/30/20 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Mickey B
FYI –

Here's the link for the Yamaha M302 for $1800:
https://losangeles.craigslist.org/lgb/msg/7097671738.html

And here, for the Yamaha M1E for $2995:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/264658760924


Seems we both found the links at the same time. thumb


Mason and Hamlin BB - 91640
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Re: Yamaha M1E vs Yamaha M302?
terminaldegree #2961878 03/30/20 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted by terminaldegree
Both are built in the US, not Japan.
One is fairly expensive, and who knows what “reconditioned” means (typically the focus is on cosmetics). Pianos without toe blocks are typically less physically stable, if you live in an environment where kids or animals might knock into the piano. The other piano is less cleaned up, and that leg design is very fragile and susceptible to moving damage if not treated very carefully. Both are console sized, and I generally recommend trying to find a studio (45”) or taller one for better sound and touch— although I like Yamahas, their consoles never really wowed me.

These may be worth a try, but I’d keep searching for other options in this price range besides just brand “Y”.
Excellent observations about stability of the M1E and the fragility of the legs on the M302. On the plus side, both pianos come with a 10 year warranty - whatever that means. smile I agree that there may be other viable options in the OP's price range.


Mason and Hamlin BB - 91640
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Re: Yamaha M1E vs Yamaha M302?
Mickey B #2961905 03/30/20 12:29 PM
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I just checked the Los Angeles Craigslist. There are a handful of listings for tall Korean built Young Chang and Weber uprights from the early1990s in the $1,600 to $1,800 price range. Some folks here may dismiss Young Chang products from that era, but I've personally had pretty good luck with them.. All depends on condition, of course.

Here are some examples.....

https://losangeles.craigslist.org/lac/msg/d/venice-piano-young-chang-for-sale/7100664638.html

https://losangeles.craigslist.org/lac/msg/d/los-angeles-young-chang-piano-in/7098411911.html


Mason and Hamlin BB - 91640
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Re: Yamaha M1E vs Yamaha M302?
Mickey B #2961964 03/30/20 03:19 PM
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Thanks all, for the advice and knowledge. I've pretty much ruled out the Yamaha M1E because of the high price tag. Another note re that seller, they're not letting people hear or play the piano in person before purchasing because of the pandemic. They're making you buy the piano blindly for $3k, have it delivered, and if you don't like it you can trade it for another piano at that cost and go through the whole process again. Sounds ridiculous. Not going for it.

I'm still considering the Yamaha M302 that has a more reasonable price. I'm going to check it out in person today/ tomorrow. I will also consider studio piano options in this price range as well. Again, thanks for the advice! Will keep you posted.

Re: Yamaha M1E vs Yamaha M302?
Mickey B #2961973 03/30/20 03:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Mickey B
Thanks all, for the advice and knowledge. I've pretty much ruled out the Yamaha M1E because of the high price tag. Another note re that seller, they're not letting people hear or play the piano in person before purchasing because of the pandemic. They're making you buy the piano blindly for $3k, have it delivered, and if you don't like it you can trade it for another piano at that cost and go through the whole process again. Sounds ridiculous. Not going for it.

I'm still considering the Yamaha M302 that has a more reasonable price. I'm going to check it out in person today/ tomorrow. I will also consider studio piano options in this price range as well. Again, thanks for the advice! Will keep you posted.


I don’t which piano dealer you are referring to, but in my amateur opinion, they will have a really rough time selling pianos for quite awhile.


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Re: Yamaha M1E vs Yamaha M302?
j&j #2961983 03/30/20 04:22 PM
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Originally Posted by j&j
I don’t which piano dealer you are referring to, but in my amateur opinion, they will have a really rough time selling pianos for quite awhile.
A little piece of completely meaningless trivia that has nothing to do with anything: The dealer in question is located two blocks away from the junior high school I attended 60 years ago. My family purchased our first piano in 1956 at another dealer in the same neighborhood. grin


Mason and Hamlin BB - 91640
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Re: Yamaha M1E vs Yamaha M302?
Carey #2961984 03/30/20 04:26 PM
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Oh wow! That's crazy, haha. The piano world is smaller than I thought. Maybe they'll give you a local's discount. Or maybe not. wink
What did your family do with that piano from 1956?

Re: Yamaha M1E vs Yamaha M302?
Mickey B #2962001 03/30/20 05:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Mickey B
Oh wow! That's crazy, haha. The piano world is smaller than I thought. Maybe they'll give you a local's discount. Or maybe not. wink
What did your family do with that piano from 1956?
It only had 64 keys and I quickly outgrew it. Sold it after moving to San Diego 3.5 years later for $100. We then bought a 50 year old upright (McPhail) for $350 that lasted me through high school. Everything was less expensive back then. My weekly thirty minute piano lessons cost $3.00. We bought our first house in La Jolla (by the beach) for $14,000. The same property is now worth about $3 million.
My family should have held on to it. ha


Mason and Hamlin BB - 91640
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YouTube channel - http://www.youtube.com/user/pianophilo

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