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Hi, firstly I want to say I haven't been playing for a decade so the challenge is real in many ways. So as an adult learning how t play again, I'm looking at K300. but I saw a Yamaha U30A yesterday, priced at 8.5K(fully refurbished, the salesman claimed its made in 1993 but I then checked U30A only made til 1991? ) I loved the sound of U30A, however was worried 1. it wasn't made for the AUS climate and on Yamaha AU website, it even says doesn't recommend buying imported piano 2.I have no knowledge who refurbished it as I'm not a profession and cant tell the subtle difference. 131cm does sound richer and more beautiful
I can however get a brand new Kawai K300 for under $7500 in AUS and its made for AU climate, I feel this is good enough and I do like the mellow tone better than Yamaha, however I was tempted by Yamaha 131! So all of a sudden, am a bit confused. Would you trust a not know refurbished U30A? (1991) or a brand new K300? The U30A has soft close lid, new pedal, new paint, new felt ... everything literally new. My Question is why to verify the workmanship, even this is from a reputable piano shop.
I will be practicing classical piece mainly. What you think of U30A? thanks

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I would save up a bit more money and buy a K500. very much worth it.


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Do you have some repertoire that you can play to try out the piano? If not, is there someone you know that try out pianos so you can hear what the pianos sound like. There’s considerably less risk for a newbie sticking with new pianos. You do really need to play the pianos or at least listen to how they sound compared to one another. I’d go the K300 route or maybe up the budget as Learux advised, and get the K500. Best wishes on finding your piano.


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As always the best advice is to play as many pianos as you can, you'll find that two pianos, even of the same type, can feel and sound quite different to play. So only you can tell what the pianos you are interested in actually are like to play and which one you prefer - we can't do that for you.

That said I personally wasn't keen on the K300 but very much liked the K500 so I second the recommendation for that. An alternative way of limiting the risk on a reconditioned piano, if you do like the Yamaha U3 family, is to just get a much cheaper one. Around me you can get a good U3 for around a third of the cost of a new K500 so, if it's the same in AUS, the risk is then much more manageable and avoids you making a 'lifetime decision' now.

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Hi letsplayit, I will share my experience with a second hand U3 purchase in Australia.
I started piano lessons for the 1st time 2017 as a 60yo. I was clueless about most things piano related. Started out with a digital, but by early 2017 decided an upright acoustic was my desire ( played one in lessons), read up on the subject, initially thought a second hand piano, then got scared of some of the stories of second hand piano purchases, went shopping for a new one, tried a Kawai K300, purchased a second hand Yamaha U3H... (1981) made in Japan 😀 It had been "refurbished" and a new set of hammers fitted. Paid AUS $5500. I really love it... feel I have gotten a lot of piano for my money, and it comes with a 10 year warranty from the store. Naturally Yamaha don't want people buying their pianos second hand (just saying!) All the best with your piano purchase. Bet

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We bought a " refurbished " Yamaha YU10 about 3 years.In short the piano was a somehow a uselsess piano.It was returned in a few days to the store.We recovered most of the money.We
later bought a new European piano which is a really excellent piano.Recently we bought a 2nd piano.It is a used Kawai upright.(KL502) It's condition is excellent and has a lovely tone.
It was used by a lady who played only occasionally but took care of the piano. It has been in
the country 22years is well adjusted to the climate.The piano is a success story.

Last edited by Lady Bird; 08/26/19 05:29 PM. Reason: Extra word
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Hi Bett, Thanks I have played a little bit on both K300 and U30A, I always liked K300 but the sure the U30A is slightly different, rather nice. I understand K500 would be So nice to play compared to K300 :-) But a bit budget constrained atm. Besides I'm still getting back into playing so would have been Canon shooting mosquito to get a K500. What bothers with with U30A is not knowing who and how was it refurbished apart from what the salesman told me. I prefer the Kawai tone for classical, I think Yamaha Aus said they will not be replacing any parts if the piano is coming from the grey market. That is quite annoying to know because I bought my samsung S8 online in AUS and when it was faulty Samsung AUS would not replace the part even if I pay for it. I fear for the same situation happen again... So far, I'm leaning towards K300. K500 is very tempting, but will be another $5000 extra, so I'm a bit put off by that. ;-) I wish I have a professional pianist with me going shopping to help me decide if that U30A is a bargain for what is :-)

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gwing, yeah it would be nice to get a nice U3 for a third price of a new K500 but not in Aus, like I said above, new K300 I can get it for under $7500 include delivery, stool, tune, but $8500 for a fully refurb U30A(1991). too many unknowns makes it tricky. I personally like the K300, but maybe I should just take my time to play a bit longer and see if I change my mind... I feel am not good enough to play a K500 anyway LOL

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Hah, there is no 'good enough' requirement to choose the piano you like and find rewarding to play.

I don't know the AUS market but $7500 seems very high for a reconditioned U30A. Thread http://forum.pianoworld.com/ubbthreads.php/topics/2341458/Yamaha_U3_-_How_old_is_too_old.html suggest several U3 pianos around $3000, admittedly in 2014.

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Hi Gwing, yes the U30A will cost $8500 after all these discounts and negotiation, Without personally having enough knowledge about the condition being refurbished, i find it hard to trust the whole job. Its pretty much what the salesman says vs what I think... what an U3 in 1964 costs $3000 in another thread is a bit too old imo. the Kawai keys are much lighter and responsive. I wish I had someone who understands the piano well to go into a shop with me. In the end, I guess it comes down to trust and how confident i am to pick up a second hand without its true background knowledge.

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I don't want to put a sugar coat to my answer. A 30 years old piano for more money than an equivalent quality new piano is a bad deal. Upright pianos of this kind are not refurbished, the right term is partially reconditioned, enough to be sold.
I can't guess your preference but I doubt the action of this piano is better than the K300 or sound. In my opinion, a U30 made in 1991 should not be sold for more than $4,500.


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Kurtmen,Do you know the Australian market well enough to advise on price? You might for all I know.Have you seen the value of the Aus. $ lately?


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Lushey1: I know pianos, math and the difference between a good and bad deal, $3,000 USD for an upright piano 30 years old, is more than reasonable relative to the cost of a new piano of equal or perhaps better quality.


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letsplayit, one consideration might be that a new K300 could be the first of the stepping stones on your way up the piano food chain. They are desirable on the used piano market and hold their value pretty well. I don't know if things are the same in AUS as in the US, but if so, the 10-year transferable warranty adds something to their sale value in the first ten years, and to some peace of mind for the second owner.

As the fumes went to my head, I asked my dealer here what they would give me in trade-in value for my new RX-5, to swap up for an SK-6. She told me that it had been inside a year, and that they would allow 100% (not including moving). It was still a lot of money; it didn't happen; I was and still am happy with what I have.

Best of luck on your search.


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Hi Clef, You might be right :-) Try not to over invest first before finding out if I'd be there for the long haul ;-) RX-5 sounds WOW, you are so lucky! may I come and just polish your piano everyday? lol, it would look so sexy and to play it just mmmm. Oh I also feel my fingers slip a bit on the keys then was surprised to read kawai K500 has longer keys, K400 might too. Anyway, I wonder if longer keys and different material for the keys would mean less slippery or just my bad playing style. Oh well, that's another topic Is K400 worth it. thanks for your advice.


Originally Posted by Jeff Clef
letsplayit, one consideration might be that a new K300 could be the first of the stepping stones on your way up the piano food chain. They are desirable on the used piano market and hold their value pretty well. I don't know if things are the same in AUS as in the US, but if so, the 10-year transferable warranty adds something to their sale value in the first ten years, and to some peace of mind for the second owner.

As the fumes went to my head, I asked my dealer here what they would give me in trade-in value for my new RX-5, to swap up for an SK-6. She told me that it had been inside a year, and that they would allow 100% (not including moving). It was still a lot of money; it didn't happen; I was and still am happy with what I have.

Best of luck on your search.

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Those people that think they have bought a fully restored 30 - 40 year old yamaha piano for $4500-7000 are completely miss informed.
The pianos may have had some parts replaced, however many piano shops say the pianos are fully restored. To completely restore a 30 to 40 year old piano would cost more that the piano is worth.
To check restoration prices call a reputable qualified association piano tuner and ask them, even how much it is to replace a set of new yamaha hammers.
You will be surprised at how expensive it is, i'm not saying that shops don't replace them ....But! if your buying the piano for $5000 would they spend a 1/4 of the price of the piano to still make a profit!!??? Not likely..
I would imagine that most of the imported yamahas would only have reshaped hammers, new return straps, new loop tapes, maybe a keyboard/bed clean and a case polish/spray if needed.
Very rarely any strings replaced.. PS check yamaha bass strings as they are renown for loosing there tone.
Any mid Height new yamaha (u1j) / kawai K300 would usually sound better and feel better that any 40 year old piano.
Of course there are exceptions however you would need to be very selective to find a good one.

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The AUS price you've been quoted for the K-300 translates to $5,828 in USD - which is a very good deal. You really can't go wrong with the Millenium III action - plus you get the new piano warranty. A $5,000 difference in price between the K-300 and K-500 seems excessive. Should be more in the range of $3,000. Too many unknowns about the old Yamaha - and the price seems excessively high.


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This thread is over one year old


"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 remember letsplayit if fact bought a K300. Perhaps am wrong?

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I obviously didn't catch that !! ha

I'm glad the OP bought a K-300. smile


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