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Sonepica, there are numerous variables that can effect the volume (amount of, not loudness) of tone and the length of sustain of a piano, such as its physical size (larger = more potential resonance through the soundboard & case), how it's voiced, the accoustics of the room it's placed in, and of course proper tuning.


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Originally Posted by Sweelinck
Originally Posted by Sonepica
Something I noticed comparing a CFX with Yamahas 7'6 pianos is that the CFX had a better treble, by which I mean a much more substantial tone with a longer sustain.

It's easy to see why concert grands would have a better bass than smaller pianos - the bass strings are much longer. But the treble section would be almost the same, wouldn't it?

What's the reason that concert grands have a better treble? Or larger pianos vs smaller pianos in general, such as a C7 vs a C6?

Have you compared the treble sustain of medium length grands from other manufactures to the CFX or just smaller Yamaha grands? An SK-3 I played had excellent treble sustain. Grotrian pianos I've played had phenomenal treble sustain as well, just to mention a couple. I haven't played a Yamaha grand in a number of years, but I would assume the product line that competes with Shigeru Kawai's contains excellent pianos.

This was just something I noticed at the Yamaha showroom when I was selecting my S7X. There are no Kawai pianos there. It's not necessarily about sustain, but the substantiveness of the sound.

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The treble in some of the S7X videos you linked elsewhere was quite excellent! thumb


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On one hand, one might assume that concert grands have better everything. On the other hand, if I can oversimplify, the basic grand design is the same apart from the length of the bass, and the overall gradation down to the short treble, so it's no wonder that "balance" issues arise (although that's not the topic of the thread).

Anyway, when I read the thread subject I thought, "do they (have better trebles)?" And I'd say not necessarily. It's really down to the various designs, and even the individual specimens of those designs, and how they are maintained.


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Typically, a 9 foot concert grand has different materials, design constraints, and scale design than does a semi-grand at 71/2’. Performing for a concert audience is entirely different than performing for a smaller venue. I believe the only fair comparison might be to compare the treble of a CFX in a concert hall the treble of a CF6 in a smaller hall, but then that’s only if the craftsmanship, materials and scale design is exactly the same on both pianos. (The 2 pianos might not be exactly the same because the length of the CFX might require differences in the making).

Last edited by j&j; 08/05/21 09:09 PM.

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Why? It's because of the plate. smile

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Originally Posted by Steve Jackson
Why? It's because of the plate. smile

Funnily enough, that’s what my piano tech said - that the weight of the frame affects sustain. Or at least, what I think he said. I could have misunderstood. He certainly never compared treble across concert grands, so no answer there.

However, he mentioned a weighting system on some of his pianos (Overs 225) designed to prolong or retard sustain on a per note basis, and his opinion was that the weight of the Stuart agraffes contributes to their long sustain.

I wonder if Fareham could contribute to this discussion. I’d love to hear his opinion.

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Originally Posted by parnassus
Originally Posted by Steve Jackson
Why? It's because of the plate. smile

Funnily enough, that’s what my piano tech said - that the weight of the frame affects sustain. Or at least, what I think he said. I could have misunderstood. He certainly never compared treble across concert grands, so no answer there.

However, he mentioned a weighting system on some of his pianos (Overs 225) designed to prolong or retard sustain on a per note basis, and his opinion was that the weight of the Stuart agraffes contributes to their long sustain.

I wonder if Fareham could contribute to this discussion. I’d love to hear his opinion.

The idea that a heavier plate helps is that it keeps the structure of the piano quieter which then takes less energy from the soundboard. I am not sure how to practically test this on a piano with a heavier plate ( to see if it would be better with a lighter plate ), but on a piano with a lighter plate I suppose you could load up the plate with weight and listen for any changes.
In the case of the Stuart agraffes adding weight, it is to the soundboard system, which can increase sustain but as with almost everything in pianos there is a price which is slowing the initial tonal development which generally makes the piano more percussive sounding. Depending on the strengths and weaknesses of the particular piano and its design, this may be a reasonable tradeoff. We recently rebuilt an old Sohmer grand piano from the 1920s that had bridge agraffes and it had excellent sustain but it still had that weird sound I associate with pianos with bridge agraffes. This old Sohmer did turn out to be the nicest sounding piano I have heard with bridge agraffes though.


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A heavier plate will damp better and also be more rigid, and both of these will serve to rob less energy from the vibrating panel. A lighter plate will have more resonances, audible or otherwise. Plate struts are a notable source of resonances, and you can often feel them vibrating even when you cannot hear the resonance. If if is vibrating but you cannot hear it, does that mean it has some effect on the soundboard system?

I have taken a 1" hardwood dowel, cut it to about 1' long, rounded off one end, and used it to test the plate in various locations. Hold it over a plate (in or out of piano), and drop it about 2". Catch it as it bounces the first time. Test it in various locations on the plate. Interestingly, one of the more lively areas is the hitch pin field between the pins and the bridge. Even more lively is the intersection of a plate strut and the hitch pin area. It seems likely to me that this is a lossy area for string energy. (Damn!!).

It seems likely that each of those 88 (or 102, or 108) bridge agraffes on the Stuart add a fair amount more weight than the 6 puny bridge pins we normally see. This is somewhat offset by the fact that the wooden bridge is not as tall as a conventional one. So yes, that likely contributes to the character of the sustain and its longevity.

Keith, I will ask you to be more descriptive of what you hear when you say that it slows the initial tonal development (as in the early attack phase?) and makes the piano more percussive. If you can elaborate on the "weird sound I associate with pianos with bridge agraffes." You are very perceptive, so I always enjoy your comments.


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The idea that a heavier plate helps is that it keeps the structure of the piano quieter which then takes less energy from the soundboard. I am not sure how to practically test this on a piano with a heavier plate ( to see if it would be better with a lighter plate ), but on a piano with a lighter plate I suppose you could load up the plate with weight and listen for any changes.

You could use a set of tuning forks, one for each fundamental frequency starting at say A440 and increasing from there. (Plate resonance would be higher piano frequencies). For each, vibrate the tuning fork and hold the base on the plate. Listen for resonance.

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We already have two active threads about plates.... let's not make this one about plates as well.

There's more to life than plates, people!

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Originally Posted by Sonepica
We already have two active threads about plates.... let's not make this one about plates as well.

There's more to life than plates, people!

So there's more to life then your questions!


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Originally Posted by trandinhnamanh
Originally Posted by Sonepica
We already have two active threads about plates.... let's not make this one about plates as well.

There's more to life than plates, people!

So there's more to life then your questions!

Yes. And yet you still found time to drop by my thread and make a silly comment. I really appreciate your time today.

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Originally Posted by Sonepica
Originally Posted by trandinhnamanh
Originally Posted by Sonepica
We already have two active threads about plates.... let's not make this one about plates as well.

There's more to life than plates, people!

So there's more to life then your questions!

Yes. And yet you still found time to drop by my thread and make a silly comment. I really appreciate your time today.


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"There's more to life than plates, people!"

Indeed. Get one.


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Pianos of better design made with better materials by better craftpersons will sound better from top to bottom. When looking at different sized pianos from the same manufacturer, the size and quality of the inner rim will effect the body resonance. Generally, in this case, bigger is better.


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Originally Posted by Dave B
Pianos of better design made with better materials by better craftpersons will sound better from top to bottom. When looking at different sized pianos from the same manufacturer, the size and quality of the inner rim will effect the body resonance. Generally, in this case, bigger is better.

Not to mention better technicians, better voicing, better isolation, better acoustics and better pianists.


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Originally Posted by Withindale
Originally Posted by Dave B
Pianos of better design made with better materials by better craftpersons will sound better from top to bottom. When looking at different sized pianos from the same manufacturer, the size and quality of the inner rim will effect the body resonance. Generally, in this case, bigger is better.

Not to mention better technicians, better voicing, better isolation, better acoustics and better pianists.

thumb


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Originally Posted by Sonepica
We already have two active threads about plates.... let's not make this one about plates as well.

There's more to life than plates, people!
Ha, you guys still at it? Spent the day at Epcot yesterday, played tennis at a Sheraton resort today, and topped it off with a massage this afternoon.

I contemplated asking the brilliant scientists at Epcot to figure out the plate issue but then I saw the mouse ears and thought otherwise.


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Originally Posted by Jethro
Originally Posted by Sonepica
We already have two active threads about plates.... let's not make this one about plates as well.

There's more to life than plates, people!
Ha, you guys still at it? Spent the day at Epcot yesterday, played tennis at a Sheraton resort today, and topped it off with a massage this afternoon.

I contemplated asking the brilliant scientists at Epcot to figure out the plate issue but then I saw the mouse ears and thought otherwise.

Jethro, there's no need to lie to make your life seem more exciting. We all know you spent the weekend watching judge judy reruns. And we're ok with that.

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