2017 was our 20th year online!

Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 3 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

Shop our online store for music lovers
SEARCH
Piano Forums & Piano World
(ad)
Petrof Pianos
Petrof Pianos
(ad)
Best of Piano Buyer
 Best of Piano Buyer
(ad)
Faust Harrison Pianos
Faust Harrison 100+ Steinway pianos
Who's Online Now
54 members (AlphaBravoCharlie, ebonykawai, Cheeto717, bobrunyan, D959, 3B43, Animisha, 17 invisible), 464 guests, and 314 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
(ad)
Estonia Pianos
Estonia Pianos
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Hop To
Page 1 of 2 1 2
Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
#3013541 08/13/20 06:41 PM
Joined: Aug 2020
Posts: 11
R
ray3127 Offline OP
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
R
Joined: Aug 2020
Posts: 11
Hello, first post here but have perused these forums for a few years to learn what I can. I am in the market for a piano and have a couple questions.

I played piano for a short time as a child, then played alto sax in band for several years. Three years ago I decided to dive back into piano, and have been taking lessons regularly since then. I am now 33, and my 6-year old son has been playing for about a year now as well.

I currently have a 48” Essex (EUP-123FL), purchased new in December 2017. I liked the feel and bright tone of the piano at the time, but have reached a point where I’d like to upgrade to a ‘nicer’ piano. Specifically, I’m looking for:
- Cleaner bass
- More responsive action
- Black finish (likely polished)
- Generally prefer brighter pianos

I’ve tried the available Kawai, Boston, and Steinway pianos at my local dealer. Of them, I like the Boston UP-132E (52”) the best. I also really like the action on the Kawai K-500. I think I would probably be happy with either, and plan to keep trying them both.

However, in reading these forums and the Piano Buyer over the years, I have come across MANY more piano brands. The trouble is that I am extremely limited on available brands here in Omaha, Nebraska. We have two piano dealers; that’s it.

Specifically, I’ve come across and researched brands like Bechstein/Hoffmann, Mason & Hamlin, Petrof, Schimmel, and Seiler that I simply do not have access to without traveling. As best as I can tell, the closest city that has all of these brands appears to be Detroit (either a flight or a 12-hour drive). I could get to a couple of the brands a little closer (Kansas City, Denver), but not all of them.

What do you suggest for people in my shoes, who are not geographically close to a wide variety of pianos? If I like a Boston/Kawai from the local dealer well enough, should I just stick with that and not worry about it? Or should I make an effort to travel and try many more, such as the brands listed above?

Note that I’m not asking “is piano X better than piano Y”? I know that I simply need to play them to see what I like best … My concern is I don’t have enough different ones to play.

Second issue: I am mostly focused on a high-quality upright piano. However, we COULD make a grand piano work. It would have to be under 6’, it would require some serious furniture re-arranging, and quite frankly I think the upright fits better with our house. But we have a couple options to make it happen. My question is, how do higher-end 50-52” uprights compare to a small-ish (max 6’0”) grand?

I have read several threads on this second topic, an understand the answer is ‘it depends, you need to play them and see for yourself’. Again, this is a bit challenging without significant travel, so I’m trying to get a sense of things from experts. As an example: Mason & Hamlin Model 50 compared to a Hoffmann Vision V175 or Kawai GL-40… At a roughly similar price point, is it worth looking at such grands? What kind of grand would be 'fair' to compare to a Model 50?

Any help with my two questions/issues is appreciated. Thank you!

(ad int) Petrof Pianos
Petrof Pianos
Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013548 08/13/20 06:57 PM
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 28,812
B
BDB Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
B
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 28,812
I would recommend seeing what a good technician could do with your piano before looking at other pianos. There is often a lot of wear that takes place in the first few years of use that needs to be compensated for. Finding someone who can do that is often harder and more important than a new piano, and even if you do still want a new piano, you will need a good technician.


Semipro Tech
Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013561 08/13/20 07:44 PM
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 27,934
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 27,934
As you say, it's hard to compare a high end and tall upright to a grand. Same without specifying how small your willing to go on the grand. Unless one has unlimited budget and space, choosing a piano will be a trade off among among variables like quality, size, sound, feel, grand or upright.

Unfortunately, I think only you can decide if you want to make a long trip like you mentioned. Some people are very willing to travel while others feel just the opposite. For some, I think the idea of traveling a long distance and then probably having only one opportunity to play potential choices would be problematic.

Last edited by pianoloverus; 08/13/20 07:47 PM.
Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
pianoloverus #3013562 08/13/20 07:51 PM
Joined: Aug 2020
Posts: 11
R
ray3127 Offline OP
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
R
Joined: Aug 2020
Posts: 11
Originally Posted by pianoloverus
As you say, it's hard to compare a high end and tall upright to a grand. Same without specifying how small your willing to go on the grand. Unless one has unlimited budget and space, choosing a piano will be a trade off among among variables like quality, size, grand or upright.

Unfortunately, I think only you can decide if you want to make a long trip like you mentioned. Some people are very willing to travel while others feel just the opposite. For some, I think the idea of traveling a long distance and then probably having only one opportunity to play potential choices would be problematic.
So a grand I could go up to 6'. I've read not so great things about grands closer to 5', but between 5'6"-6'0" the consensus seems more positive. I also mentioned a couple specific pianos as ballpark examples, if that helps.

I guess on the travel question--is that something people do? I wouldn't have a problem doing it; my question is more whether or not my limited local selection is 'enough'. If I don't mind traveling, will my mind be blown by the European brands I mentioned that I've never encountered before? To your point, I think my bigger problem is feelings pressured to make a yes/no decision based on one opportunity to play potential choices.

Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013568 08/13/20 08:08 PM
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 13,437
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 13,437
Originally Posted by ray3127
Originally Posted by pianoloverus
As you say, it's hard to compare a high end and tall upright to a grand. Same without specifying how small your willing to go on the grand. Unless one has unlimited budget and space, choosing a piano will be a trade off among among variables like quality, size, grand or upright.

Unfortunately, I think only you can decide if you want to make a long trip like you mentioned. Some people are very willing to travel while others feel just the opposite. For some, I think the idea of traveling a long distance and then probably having only one opportunity to play potential choices would be problematic.
So a grand I could go up to 6'. I've read not so great things about grands closer to 5', but between 5'6"-6'0" the consensus seems more positive. I also mentioned a couple specific pianos as ballpark examples, if that helps.

I guess on the travel question--is that something people do? I wouldn't have a problem doing it; my question is more whether or not my limited local selection is 'enough'. If I don't mind traveling, will my mind be blown by the European brands I mentioned that I've never encountered before? To your point, I think my bigger problem is feelings pressured to make a yes/no decision based on one opportunity to play potential choices.

I've been in a similar situation before, so I can relate. I did actually travel about 200 miles one way to look at my Yamaha C7 grand, but it didn't take me long to make up my mind to buy it; maybe 30/45 minutes?

When you find the candidate you really like, it doesn't take long. If you have to keep going back and playing it again and again, maybe it is not what you are looking for.

When you are looking for a piano
The experience can be filled with fear and fright
Some are mellow and some are bright
Sometimes you have to think about it a while
And sometimes it's love at first sight... smile

Good luck!

Rick


Piano enthusiast and amateur musician: "Treat others the way you would like to be treated". Yamaha C7. YouTube Channel
Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
BDB #3013576 08/13/20 08:35 PM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 573
500 Post Club Member
Offline
500 Post Club Member
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 573
Originally Posted by BDB
I would recommend seeing what a good technician could do with your piano before looking at other pianos. There is often a lot of wear that takes place in the first few years of use that needs to be compensated for. Finding someone who can do that is often harder and more important than a new piano, and even if you do still want a new piano, you will need a good technician.

Ditto what BDB said. I spent the past 6 months looking for a new piano and encountered several pianos on Craigslist that were makes/models that were supposed to be quite a step up from the Kawai I already owned. I'm sure the pianos, properly regulated and voiced, would have sounded great. But they weren't, and didn't. My regulated and voiced Kawai, albeit an entry level model, sounded and played much better overall. So if your piano hasn't been properly regulated and voiced, you may be ditching a diamond in the rough.

The exception to that is if your dissatisfaction with your piano is due to size. I'm not as familiar with uprights so I don't know what an extra 2-4 inches in height does for the sound. On grands, normally the bass suffers and sounds thinner on the smaller sizes. You said your bass wasn't clean, so if that is the only issue, it may be a matter of hammer voicing and/or bass strings. It's also a cost/benefit analysis. If you find a piano more to your liking for less than $2k more after selling yours, it may be more economical to trade up than to hire a tech to work over your piano.

Welcome to the wonderful but agonizing world of acquiring a new piano. Good luck!

Last edited by Emery Wang; 08/13/20 08:37 PM.

Daily driver: Kawai MP11SE
First crush: 2018 Kawai GL10
Current fling (and it's getting serious): 1999 Petrof III
Foster child: 1927 Kurtzmann upright
Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013597 08/13/20 10:06 PM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 10,169
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 10,169
Having lived in Crete, Lincoln and Omaha for several years in the 1970's-80's I feel your pain. My first piano purchase (when I was teaching n Crete. NE) wsa from a now defunct dealer in Kansas City in 1976 - an Everett studio upright that is still in our family. I moved it to Nebraska myself in a U-Haul. I would encourage you to see what is available in Kansas City (a 3-4 hour drive from Omaha). Between the 5-6 dealers in Kansas City, and the two in Omaha you should have a wider selection to choose from. And if all else fails, perhaps some work can be done to improve your Essex.


Mason and Hamlin BB - 91640
Kawai K-500 Upright
Kawai CA-65 Digital
YouTube channel - http://www.youtube.com/user/pianophilo
Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013613 08/13/20 11:39 PM
Joined: Aug 2020
Posts: 106
R
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
R
Joined: Aug 2020
Posts: 106
With regards to upright vs grand, from what I was told when I used to take lesson when I was younger, and from my recent adventures in piano shopping, I fall into the camp of thinking you should always get a grand piano if you have the room (and budget) for it.

For me, the main reason would be the action. Even an entry level grand action would allow for better control than a high end upright. It's simply a matter of physics with the hammers traveling vertically and from the longer key lengths.

When it comes to sound, large uprights can have a longer bass string than small grands so some people would argue that could make for a richer tone. I think it may come down more to personal preference since a grand projects sound differently than an upright. Even more so when when you take room acoustics into account.

The last, but maybe mostly minor thing I can think of is with the pedals. Pedals on uprights as far as I know generally behave differently than grands. The right sustain pedal is the same. The left una corda pedal is the main issue. On uprights, it will simply move the hammers closer to the strings, whereas on a grand, it should shift the entire action so the hammers strike 1 less string. This allows it to modify the tonal color of the keys on a grand instead of simply altering the volume. The middle pedal on most grands should be a sostenuto pedal but some high end model uprights have them as well. I haven't ran into any situations where I felt the need for a sostenuto pedal, but I'm assuming they exist.


All that said, I have an upright and I'm perfectly happy with it. I don't really have room for a grand without things feeling way too cramped. I'll trade up later down the road when I can move to a larger place.

Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013627 08/14/20 01:04 AM
Joined: May 2018
Posts: 172
S
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
S
Joined: May 2018
Posts: 172
If you are not in a hurry (after all, it's only been 3 years since your last purchase), perhaps you would consider lenghtening the search period by a lot, making it a longer research project, and squeeze in some family or business trips that can be used to try pianos in larger cities over the years? I love trying out pianos whenever I travel - a HUGE Steinway dealer right next to the Vienna opera house last summer was so sweet! Just make sure to keep a journal to remember each piano, what you liked, etc. The more you try, the better and more confident one becomes.

This is not what you asked, but if you like bright sound, as I do, you may like Yamaha, which was conspicuously missing from your list above. You may love a used Yamaha C2 (5'8'') grand piano. The new series C2X is mellower than C2, but brighter than other brands (and also significantly pricier than C2). Yamahas are known for impeccably responsive action, which you seem to want, and said to be slightly less heavy than Kawai.

rkzhao above provided a good comparison between upright and grand pianos. Other than the sound and the look, I specifically love grand pianos' two technical features: double escapement that offers fast repetitions and the middle pedal that allows you to hold a set of notes while still changing the right pedal for the remaining chords - these are required in some very cool classical contemporary pieces (samples below). If this is not the type of music you like, then that'd be two fewer reasons to go for a grand (in addition to space/cramming that you mention).

https://youtu.be/RJ4Dxi-8MvM - Basso Ostinato by Shchedrin, for the middle pedal (once, at almost the very end, to keep the massive bass note)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xOzjOYaU2jk - Piano Soleil by Gougeon, for the repeated notes (starting at 2:00 minutes)

Last edited by Soojin; 08/14/20 01:06 AM.

Public servant by day, pianist and choir conductor by night
Yamaha C2X (2020) and Yamaha P120 (2019)
Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013659 08/14/20 03:52 AM
Joined: Feb 2020
Posts: 225
K
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
K
Joined: Feb 2020
Posts: 225
Thanks for the youtube links, interesting stuff!

Regarding bass I found it starts to get interesting from about 125cm upwards, so maybe a thorough voicing would be something to consider before going through all that trouble, as suggested by BDB? You might be alright.

On the other hand - if my daughter liked playing the piano, I'd involve her with this. A trip to a big city, maybe to a museum, theme park or whatever your kid likes. Might be fun and seeing how "big" choices are made is a good learning experience about how to weigh arguments and considering different factors.
If you feel your son is too young for that, just wait a year or so?

Also, doesn't your piano dealer have a steady supply of interesting used pianos?

Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013695 08/14/20 07:00 AM
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 5,716
5000 Post Club Member
Offline
5000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 5,716
Ray, welcome to PW!!

Regarding having limited options close by, I feel your pain!! I spent last spring and summer driving all over the place because there aren’t any dealers close by. I ended up visiting 5 dealers and several grand pianos being sold by private sellers. Even with all that driving, most of what I could find were grands made by Yamaha, Kawai, Steinway, Boston, Essex.... Well, but I did end up able to play the following used grands: Feurich, Petrof, Mason & Hamlin. Oh and one new Seiler that I was sort of interested in except the dealer was crazy as a loon and wouldn’t leave me alone so my husband and I practically ran from the store!

Still, I didn’t have as far to drive as you do... But here’s the funny part: I ended up buying a Yamaha C2 from a private seller who lives in the same city as I do (maybe like 10 minutes by car from my house). But, I wouldn’t have had the knowledge and courage to buy that piano had I not spent all that time playing all those pianos...

So, to answer one of your questions, yes, you certainly could plan to travel because that is normal and something people do. But, having said that, if there is a grand at your dealers that you like and that fits your budget (and your house) there’s no reason not to just get that piano...

Did you play any grands at the local dealership? Did you like them?

As you probably know, Yamaha C2 is 5’8” and in addition to this piano, during my search I played multiple pianos in this same size range, as well as a few 5’ or 5’3” and a few 6’1” pianos (and a few pianos that I could never afford that were were much larger).

So, as to your question about grand vs. upright... Obviously, since I bought a 5’8” piano, I think that’s a fine length and I would pick this over a large upright because of the sound, the action, and esp. the experience you get playing a grand vs. an upright.
Also, I really really like the Boston GP 164 (I think that’s the right number, it’s 5’4” I think, which is about 164cm...)

So hopefully these comments are helpful. I’ll stop here but feel free to ask questions, since my experience might be fairly relevant for you.


Started piano June 1999.
Proud owner of a Yamaha C2

[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013735 08/14/20 09:09 AM
Joined: Oct 2009
Posts: 3,541
j&j Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Joined: Oct 2009
Posts: 3,541
Hi Ray3127,

I agree with BDB on this topic, and I think BDB Is very knowledgeable. You’ve only had your upright less than 3 years and it seems a short time to outgrow a new upright. Maybe some voicing and regulation could make you love your Essex again. If not, it might make it easier to sell. I’d find a good reliable piano technician to figure some next step options. Best Wishes on your piano journey.


J & J
Estonia L190 Hidden Beauty
Casio Privia PX-330
Life is too short to not have a great piano.
[Linked Image]
Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013749 08/14/20 09:47 AM
Joined: Jun 2020
Posts: 48
P
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
P
Joined: Jun 2020
Posts: 48
Originally Posted by ray3127
I currently have a 48” Essex (EUP-123FL), purchased new in December 2017. I liked the feel and bright tone of the piano at the time, but have reached a point where I’d like to upgrade to a ‘nicer’ piano. Specifically, I’m looking for:
- Cleaner bass
- More responsive action
- Black finish (likely polished)
- Generally prefer brighter pianos

You would be amazed at what a through regulation & voicing can do for a piano. I urge you to consider having a competent technician do that; you may find that you fall back in love with your Essex. And it will give you more time/freedom to look for your next piano. Cost should be in the range of $500-$800 for an upright. Although my own Charles Walter studio has been very well maintained over the years, a few months ago my tech regulated & voiced it and the results were superb. The entire action is now smoother and more uniform than ever and repetition is faster. She had asked me what my biggest problem was and I replied "doing pianissimo." Well, that's no longer a problem. I also wanted to retain the overall tone of the piano (I, too, prefer pianos on the brighter side) so the voicing wasn't aggressive. But she did fix a handful of keys that had become harsh and evened-out the voicing across the keyboard. I am in awe of the results.

While it may seem that a 3-year-old piano wouldn't, or shouldn't, need much work, there is no guarantee (and imho it is unlikely) that the dealer put the kind of work into it that your own technician would do. Even if you end up selling the piano, the work will put it into good condition for sale and likely command a better price.

Last edited by Pianosearcher; 08/14/20 09:54 AM.
Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013755 08/14/20 10:09 AM
Joined: Jun 2020
Posts: 48
P
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
P
Joined: Jun 2020
Posts: 48
As for grands, there is nothing like seeing & trying them out for yourself. I can't imagine buying a grand without having spent significant time at the keyboard. There is so much variability from piano to piano (even among the same model from the same manufacturer) that no review or opinion is going to convey to you what a specific piano is going to be like ... or whether or not it's "your piano."

Ha ha, Bosendorfer is considered among the best of the best but I tried out 3 of them (225's, 2 new, one used) and disliked all of them; the sound was loose and the action was heavy (they may not have been set up properly but shame on the dealer if that was the case). Then there was the unknown Estonia 168 in a back corner (had never heard of them at the time); I finally gave it a try and almost cried at the beauty of the sound & action. I have also tried out dozens of Steinway M's (new, used & reconditioned) and while they all had their differences, I didn't like any of them. I have tried out 2 Schimmel 5'10" grands that were like completely different pianos - one was bright & had a light, fast action; the other had a heavy action and was very warm.

The point being, if you want to find a grand, plan to spend time looking at & evaluating different pianos; and plan on a much higher budget than for an upright.

Last edited by Pianosearcher; 08/14/20 10:17 AM.
Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013774 08/14/20 11:08 AM
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 13,437
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 13,437
I've learned that when it comes to acoustic pianos, especially early on, we don't always know exactly what we want. We may have a general idea, but there are so many to choose from, it is difficult to narrow it down. Sometimes we move up the piano chain multiple times searching for that "dream piano", that might be within our reach.

We can settle for something that is quick and convenient to buy, or we can be patient and seek out what seems to entice us the most in a piano. I do agree that a grand is prefered, usually, IF you have the room. I don't think we can really enjoy a piano if it is more of an inconvenience than an enjoyment.

Also, and this is just me, myself and I speaking here ( smile ) I don't think it is advisable to buy a piano we can't afford or have to make payments on, but that is just me; a piano is a luxury item, and not a necessity, per-se. There are too many more options that don't require a monthly payment or interest, usually. But to each their own.

I would suggest getting out and playing as many pianos as you can, of different brands, to get some idea of what you think you want. Also, a good technician can always make a good sounding playing piano sound and play even better.

You are following the path of most, in that you bought a nice piano that served its purpose well for while, and now you want something better/different. There is always a better piano to be had, but once you find "the one", it will satisfy for a long time and perhaps a lifetime.

Good luck with your search, and enjoy the adventure!

Rick


Piano enthusiast and amateur musician: "Treat others the way you would like to be treated". Yamaha C7. YouTube Channel
Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013778 08/14/20 11:15 AM
Joined: May 2006
Posts: 6,045
6000 Post Club Member
Offline
6000 Post Club Member
Joined: May 2006
Posts: 6,045
Kansas City is within driving distance, but I don't know that I'd subject myself to flying at this point (and I'm assuming you'd have to make connections to get to some of those places from your home airport) for a piano search. Yes, the K-500 or UP-132 would be a noticeable step up.

Having said that, there is definitely a case for having your current piano tuned well, finely regulated, and the voicing touched up. My experience with Essex 123 pianos is that they're generally pretty big sounding and a little bright, so that seems right up your alley; don't forget that pianos also get brighter the more you play them. I'd bet the action could be made more responsive through a few hours of regulation. And the bass tone could possibly be clarified slightly by a technician who's experienced with tone regulation. All-in, you're looking at less than 4 hours of work plus a tuning (all of it can be done in your home), so I'd guess this would ring up under what Pianosearcher said (considering this piano is so new), probably $500 or less.

I'd work with your Essex first. If you're not thrilled with the result, put the piano up for sale knowing it's probably going to show better than the dealer floor models after all the work done on it. Then I'd consider what's available locally against stuff in KC. And only then would I start flying all over the place. Just stop when you're satisfied!


Pianist, teacher, apprentice technician, internet addict.
Piano Review Editor - Acoustic and Digital Piano Buyer
Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013890 08/14/20 04:28 PM
Joined: Aug 2020
Posts: 11
R
ray3127 Offline OP
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
R
Joined: Aug 2020
Posts: 11
Wow, first I just need to thank everybody for their thoughtful responses. I would quote/reply individually, but that would be a lot of quotes/replies!

Re: Have a technician work on the Essex
Aside from the piano tuner who came out about 6 months after I purchased the piano, I have not worked with a piano technician before. It is clear that this is a glaring omission on my part, and I have since contacted some local technicians with excellent ratings to take care of this. As advised, I plan to have them do a number on my Essex first. Whether I find a new piano or not, this is a practical move.

Re: Grand vs. Upright
This morning I went and played what the grands available locally. I had never *seriously* tried them out before today, and now I am probably leaning towards the grand. Again, it is more or less Boston vs. Kawai around here, and I really liked the 5' 10" Boston ... probably more than the 52" Boston upright I previously preferred.

Additionally, currently I have my upright in my office. It fits nicely, but is a bit tucked away from the house. Most people who enter wouldn’t know we owned a piano. Though I am not buying a piano to be a showpiece, I do think that moving the piano to the family room is an important ‘signal’, both for myself and my children. I want it to be a central part of our home, not easily forgotten. Our family room is fairly large, and we would be replacing a (not often used) recliner with either an upright or a grand. A grand would encroach on the open floor space just a bit, but there would still be ample space in the room. I have had to talk myself into it a little, but I do believe the grand will be what we pursue.

Re: Trying MANY new pianos
The pervasive advice is to try, try, and try some more. Then really start trying them. Given what I have available locally, I just don’t feel like I can adequately do this. So I will have to travel, and will look into Kansas City. Other candidates are Minneapolis, Denver, St. Louis, and Chicago … This will be work, but after reading everything here I think it is worth it. I also like the idea of making it a learning experience with my son—excellent idea.

Further, I am realizing just how long a process this may be (“the wonderful but agonizing world of acquiring a new piano”). But in the end it will be worth the effort.

Conclusion (for now)
Overall, Rick hit the nail on the head with my situation, which sounds quite common. I did “rush” 3 years ago, and was a completely different player at the time. I have progressed a fair bit, and though I have a still have a long way to go I see this thing sticking with me now. I wasn’t ready to “invest” in a long-term instrument before, and instead chose what was a ‘starter’ piano for me. It was quick/convenient, but now I am ready to be patient and find my Goldilocks piano.

Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013900 08/14/20 04:51 PM
Joined: Aug 2020
Posts: 106
R
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
R
Joined: Aug 2020
Posts: 106
Originally Posted by ray3127
Additionally, currently I have my upright in my office. It fits nicely, but is a bit tucked away from the house. Most people who enter wouldn’t know we owned a piano. Though I am not buying a piano to be a showpiece, I do think that moving the piano to the family room is an important ‘signal’, both for myself and my children. I want it to be a central part of our home, not easily forgotten. Our family room is fairly large, and we would be replacing a (not often used) recliner with either an upright or a grand. A grand would encroach on the open floor space just a bit, but there would still be ample space in the room. I have had to talk myself into it a little, but I do believe the grand will be what we pursue.

Just a thought, why not both? Keep the Essex as a general purpose practice piano and get a nice grand for the family room for family performances and general enjoyment?

For one, I think there's absolutely nothing wrong with having a grand piano as a showpiece. But also, many of the more serious piano players I know personally tend to have both an upright as well as a nice grand. They end up probably spending most of the practice on the upright (some I know of are definitely no better than your Essex) while the grand can be used to perform for guests and for just enjoying pieces in their repertoire.

Also having two pianos would allow both you and your son to practice at the same time if needed.

Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013928 08/14/20 06:39 PM
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 27,934
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 27,934
Originally Posted by ray3127
Re: Have a technician work on the Essex
Aside from the piano tuner who came out about 6 months after I purchased the piano, I have not worked with a piano technician before. It is clear that this is a glaring omission on my part, and I have since contacted some local technicians with excellent ratings to take care of this. As advised, I plan to have them do a number on my Essex first. Whether I find a new piano or not, this is a practical move.
Do you mean the piano hasn't been tuned since 6 months after you purchased it? If so, that could be the reason for not liking the tone.

You need to find a good tech whether or not you keep the Essex. If you request it, some posters or dealers knowledgeable about your area may be able to give you some suggestions. You should discuss with any tech what you'd like to improve on the Essex, whether they think they can significantly improve the piano, and what their suggestions are. A major regulation and voicing can be several day's work and cost a lot.

Re: Limited local piano choices & Uprights vs. Grands
ray3127 #3013933 08/14/20 06:52 PM
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 5,716
5000 Post Club Member
Offline
5000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 5,716
Ray, the 5'10" Boston is a really nice piano! But as you say, if you can make a trip to try some other brands, you'll really benefit from the experience, regardless of what you end getting.

Re moving the piano into a more central part of the home, I think this is a great idea. I have my piano in the living room (front room) and there's also a separate family room that you can enter from the living room. I love this set up because 1) I love having the piano be the first thing you see when you come into our home. 2) We put our Christmas tree up in front of the front window and the piano is next to that, which I love. And 3) when I entertain, it's perfect to have little music parties in the front room.

Anyway, keep us posted as you move forward!


Started piano June 1999.
Proud owner of a Yamaha C2

[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
Page 1 of 2 1 2

Moderated by  Ken Knapp, Piano World 

Link Copied to Clipboard
(ad)
Pianoteq
PianoTeq Karsten Collection
(ad)
Piano Life Saver - Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
Download Sheet Music
Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Practice schedule
by Pilotryan - 09/18/20 09:34 AM
Pedal curve?
by MacMacMac - 09/18/20 05:59 AM
achieveable "bucket list" pieces
by Lingyis - 09/18/20 04:05 AM
What are these chords
by ManishP - 09/18/20 03:39 AM
What's Hot!!
News from the Piano World
3,000,000+!
------------------
Posting Pictures on the Forums
-------------------
Forums RULES & HELP
-------------------
ADVERTISE on Piano World
Forum Statistics
Forums41
Topics201,691
Posts3,004,131
Members98,581
Most Online15,252
Mar 21st, 2010
Please Support Our Advertisers


Faust Harrison 100+ Steinways

Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver

 Best of Piano Buyer

PianoTeq Bechstein
Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads



 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter |


copyright 1997 - 2020 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.4