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Originally Posted by SonatainfSharp
I know! I don’t get much forum time on the weekends, so expect a typical, long-winded update tomorrow!
A 👍🏻👎🏼 Would be appreciated


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Originally Posted by dogperson
Originally Posted by SonatainfSharp
I know! I don’t get much forum time on the weekends, so expect a typical, long-winded update tomorrow!
A 👍🏻👎🏼 Would be appreciated

haha! yes, 👍🏻👎🏼 would be nice. wink

I'm guessing 👎🏼 because the excitement associated with 👍🏻 would be hard to contain.


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Originally Posted by Retsacnal
Originally Posted by dogperson
Originally Posted by SonatainfSharp
I know! I don’t get much forum time on the weekends, so expect a typical, long-winded update tomorrow!
A 👍🏻👎🏼 Would be appreciated

haha! yes, 👍🏻👎🏼 would be nice. wink

I'm guessing 👎🏼 because the excitement associated with 👍🏻 would be hard to contain.
Now, I’m tempted to reread and dissect OP’s latest post for any clues that I may have missed... I’m hoping for good news.

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This story is more suspenseful than the novel I'm reading.....


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So looking forward to the update!!!

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Thumbs up. Double thumbs up! 1,998 words worth of thumbs up!

The dealer exceeded his reputation in preparation of this 1998 PETROF P-IV-C for me. I acknowledge that he went above and beyond with this piano because it's for me. He also knows that salesman snake oil won't work on me, so he didn’t bother with any salesman tactics. (He already knows me really well in the first place.) We went over the bad with the good. (Though as you will read below, the only "bad" is moot.)

He voiced and regulated the piano with as much care as he would have prepared any of the Bosies or rebuilt S&S that he sells, and it was very obvious. I guess he used to sell PETROF back in 1998, so he likely sold this very piano when it was new while working at the area's PETROF dealer before it closed down quite some time ago. (We currently don't have a PETROF dealer in Minneapolis/St. Paul, but he said that if someone wants a new one, he would be it as he's already in close contact with PETROF anyway.)

He is sure beyond a doubt that this piano has never been prepared so well, and it's certainly better than when it was brand new (as you will see as this moves on). He said it's prepared to be a great entry-level point into the Bosie-class, and he can't believe himself how well it turned out. (I've played his Bosie-preps, S&S rebuilds, and other things, so I know he's not exaggerating.) We are also sure that I will never come across another PETROF from this era that is prepared this well.

First, the tuning. I forgot to ask who tuned it (maybe it was himself?), but it was the most precise, stable tuning with the most pleasing unisons and the most appropriately stretched octaves I have ever heard in a very long time. He described the build construction in detail (since he used to sell them), and he expects the tuning to remain incredibly stable even once it acclimates to my house and gets tuned in its permanent place. I will ask him who tuned it eventually. If it was him, then that is too bad as he doesn’t do house calls. If it's one of his regular techs, then I would be surprised as I have used them all before, and this tuning didn't feel like any of his own techs. It's a mystery I need to solve, for sure. He did say that going forward to please only use my own current tech (they know each other but do not work for each other whatsoever). He asks that I don’t let anyone else touch this piano except my current tech.

The voicing. The voicing! He said he put a lot of work into the voicing. He described several methods that he needed to use and terminology that I understood but can’t remember. He said that he could tell that it had never been voiced after it left the factory. He said the reason it was so extra bright was because the hammers were really lacquered up from the factory, and no one ever did anything about it over the 23 years of its life. But he dug in, and he did an amazing job, just like I assured you all that he would! Aesthetically, the hammers themselves don’t even have grooves anymore. They look like brand new hammers!

If you take a scale of extremely mellow to headache-inducing bright, it’s about in the middle. It’s definitely not the mellowest PETROF I have played, but it sounds amazing. (It’s nowhere near as mellow as the PETROF I played in my video at LivingPianos linked above, thank goodness.) He pointed out three hammers with issues, but I never would have heard the issues on my own, and while I could hear the issues he was talking about when he pointed them out to me, I won’t be able to find them again. Even then, the issues still fell well into the “normal piano sound” timbre to me! (This is the only “bad” part of the piano.)

He is confident that his voicing work will hold (we talked previously about voicing that actually holds vs voicing that finds its way back, and he uses techniques that will hold a voicing that most techs won’t do because it’s so much extra work, or techs never get to that level to even know about it in the first place.) We talked about someone like him who has voiced hundreds (if not thousands?) of brand new sets of hammers from scratch, vs techs in the field who do voicing yet have never touched a new hammer set even once in their careers. He did say that if I want new hammers in 5-10 years, that he asked that I have him do the work, no one else. He already knows that he would want to put on Renner Blue Point hammers, and he already knows how he wants to voice them. He seemed pretty excited about it, but I am going to wait a few years and see how I feel, since the piano sounds perfectly fine for me right now and doesn’t need hammers. I am curious how the piano will sound in my live 1939 dining room with minimal treatment, though. (Of course I will be making room adjustments once the piano is there.)

The regulation. Good grief. If someone had me close my eyes and told me that I was playing a slightly-heavy Bosie (aside from the sound), I wouldn’t have had any reason to doubt them. He spent a lot of time and care in the regulation. He said his original plans were to give it a quick regulation, but once he got really into it, he wanted to do a full service. The things that the piano is able to do that I haven’t experienced before…Wow! The thing I like most was that it is so ridiculously easy to project a melody on top of harmony. I was able to take 8-note chords and project a melody with my pinky finger with such ease…things that my Walter can’t even do. I was even able to take thick 8-note chords and project a melody within the chords! I know a lot of that is my own technique, but my point is that it’s never been so incredibly easy!

The piano, being European, is very sensitive. It’s like having incredibly fine ingredients in your kitchen, and if you don’t know what you are doing, then you mess it up. My first mistake was sitting down and trying to play it like my Walter or a S&S, and you just can’t do that. You put in very little, and it goes a very, very long way. (Estrin actually has a video on this exact thing using a PETROF vs S&S.) It’s definitely like I have been playing with training wheels on my Walter, but with this PETROF the training wheels have been removed. So, I am going to need to re-learn how to play the piano. But it shouldn’t be terribly difficult given its 5’ 7 3/5” size and my smallish dining room. (Most people say the P-IV is 5’8” because 5’7.6” gets rounded up to 5’8”. My dealer had always called them 5’7”, which I find interesting.)

The top most notes are very clear, including C8, despite its 5’8” size. The lowest notes are mellow and not grumbling like that of a USA-sounding piano. Thank goodness.

And as expected, the timbre changes the harder you play, as is the case of any fine European piano. When you play softly, it’s very mellow, but as you play harder, it gets brighter. As it should. I am very curious how it will sound in my house, since I won’t need to ever play it very hard, as I already mentioned.

I had him play the piano as well, since it’s always going to be different to walk around and listen to someone else play. He is an extremely competent player himself. He played polyphonic music and brought out different melody lines within, all while going from pppp to ffff. Incredible. Just incredible.

Anyway, this probably isn’t going to be your typical example of a 1998 PETROF IV, and he’s confident that it holds its own against the current PETROF pianos. He said the soundboard, case, and inner workings are in such amazing shape that he really can’t believe it himself.

I guess the piano was brought in by some youngish guy who ended up with it (inherited?) and didn’t know what to do with it. So, it wasn’t even a trade. It’s just being sold on consignment. I guess it’s been sitting in the corner going unnoticed for a few months as the dealer is swamped with S&S rebuilds and selling brand new Bosies and German Seilers that don’t need a lot of effort to sell themselves (my impression). Very few people in this part of the country even knows what a PETROF is, but I saw it from the other side of the store. I guess it was just sitting there like an introvert at a party, waiting for me!

Of course the price is amazing. It’s about average for a typical PETROF of this era, but the price is on the very low end for one with full Renner action in an art case from the era. I am curious, though, how different the piano would be if it weren’t prepped for me regarding the time put into the regulation and voicing. Maybe the dealer would have done the same for anyone walking in off the street, or maybe I am getting special treatment given my history with this dealer. (He also reads the posts on these forums from time to time, so he knows I don’t sugar-coat things if they don’t go well.) But the fact that it was just sitting in the corner for some time makes me think that I did get some sort of special treatment, but I could be wrong.

The bench is interesting. It is some Italian thing with a removable pad that can be removed and re-upholstered as needed. It’s adjustable with a simple design that can’t really break, and it’s duet sized as well! It matches the piano perfectly even though it didn’t come with the piano. My dealer knew all about these benches, as well.

When do I get it? Well, not for a few weeks yet at the soonest. We have to get a house project done, rug installed, and coordinate the moving with the dealer/movers/my work schedule. So, it will be a long, long, long time (in my head). The piano is closed up with a sold sign on it, and I have the invoice in my hand, so I can’t imagine that it will walk away from me!

I had a bunch more things to say about it, but I can’t remember now, so I will just reply to this thread again once I remember a few more things.

Of course I won’t believe it until it’s actually in my house. And even then I won’t believe that it’s mine to keep for several months after that.

Oh, and after playing the piano for an hour or so, we talked-shop and inside-baseball about a lot of things going on in the industry, factories, and various brands as he has a very deep perspective. These conversations are typical when I am there for various reasons. That was almost as exciting as the piano itself! I really appreciate having so many dealer and tech friends in my life and the industry and technical knowledge I gain from them; I just wish I had become a tech or even worked for this kind of dealer/rebuilder myself! The things I learn are so incredibly fascinating that I feel like a toddler absorbing absolutely everything!

[*Aside from this footnote, this post is 1998 words, the same as the year of the piano!]


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Congratulations!!!

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Interesting read!

Yes, Congratulations on your new-to-you Petrof grand!

Maybe you can get the home projects done ahead of schedule and have the Petrof delivered sooner rather than later.

All the best!

Rick


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Sounds great! I hadn’t realized that it’s an art case. I’ll look forward to pictures.


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Originally Posted by Retsacnal
Sounds great! I hadn’t realized that it’s an art case. I’ll look forward to pictures.

Not to put any kind of damper on SonatainfSharp's joy and happiness, which it shouldn't, and I probably shouldn't mention it, but I'll throw this out there anyway...

I was told by a highly reputable piano dealer and concert tech that the art case style grands were slow sellers and most piano dealers avoided them because they sat on the sales floor for years without being sold. My Baldwin R is an art-case cabinet style, and I was asking this person some questions about the Baldwin R before I purchased it. However, I bought the Baldwin R from a private seller, and not the dealer.

Honestly, I do like a traditional, spade-leg style in a grand piano, but I got a great deal on the Baldwin R, and the art-case cabinet looks great to me. My late wife loved it.

So, SonatainfSharp, you have a rare commodity in the art-case style of your Petfof grand cabinet (according to some).

Rick


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Congrats! That's super exciting!! And FWIW, I love a Chippendale case and find them incredibly elegant. I had a glossy black Petrof IV and it was a huge black triangle that sucked all the air out of the room. It seemed to take up much more volume than my much bigger Bösendorfer!

Also, my tech says he can get the best and most stable voicing out of a set of hammers that has never been voiced by someone else. Sounds like you are incredibly lucky to have such a skilled voicer prepping your piano!

Hope you'll feel up to making some recordings once it arrives!


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I will be making recordings for sure, like I have been doing on my YouTube channel. I am trying to get excited about doing dozens of mic placement and configuration test recordings...again. I am curious how it will sound recorded, but not terribly excited about the process.

I have a feeling that the style of music I will be inspired to play will change drastically. I am already thinking of some Chopin Preludes to play first, just to get some sound tests and recordings made sooner rather than later. I am even inspired to learn some Bach again, even though it's been well over 20 years. I will still stick to some modern pieces, though. There are a few I have been unable to play due to lack of sostenuto, but now that I will have one, there are lots of pieces that I can finally learn and play!

Regarding the Chippendale are case, I never thought that I would own a piano other than satin ebony, regardless of type or brand, but when I saw the piano, it seems to fit my impression of the PETROF brand in my head and it works. Thankfully, it plays and sounds great, too! laugh


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Congratulations!!! Things have a way of working themselves out for the better, it seems. I, along with many on this forum I’m sure, would be looking forward to the move in day almost as much as you. Keep us posted!

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I think Petrofs only come in glossy finish! I've never seen a satin one. I don't know about other brands but the Steinway satin ebony finishes wear horribly and get scratches all over the fallboard and then they just look beat up!

I'm going through the recording setup blues as well (was a huge headache to make the only two videos that I have). Just sold my Zoom H4n Pro on eBay and am trying to find a setup that sounds good but is also easy to make videos. Hopefully for both of us it's not as painful as the first time around wink


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Ok, Chippendale. I don't tend to think of Queen Anne as "art case" (and Chippendale is an evolution of Queen Anne), but I suppose that in piano marketing anything other than spade legs is an art case! I think these look ok, certainly in the right space.

Is it black or wood grained (if you mentioned it above, then I missed it)? I think Queen Anne and Chippendale look better in non-black (but I tend to think that about most pianos anyway...).

Is it the style below? (that's a handsome piano)

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It's so pretty!!! Congrats!!!!! smile

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That is actually THE piano and bench. They are so far behind in updating their website that it was updated after I bought it. laugh (The used Shimmel and Kawai they have listed are long gone.) The brown piano in the background is a Young Chang that came and sold right away. He normally sells pianos before they come in and are ready to go. That PETROF has been there a long time and never made it to their website until last night, I see, even though I "bought it" a few weeks ago. I think he uses his website more like a portfolio of past sales.

PETROF called that an art case during the Roman Numeral era, but I agree not all brands would call that an art case. PETROF now calls them "style cases" in their new pianos and uses the names Chippendale, Demichippendale, Rococo, and Klasic. Notice that piano doesn't even have wheels!


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Yep, I have a YouTube channel!

Current:
1998 PETROF Model IV Chippendale
LEGO Grand Piano (IDEAS 031|21323)
YAMAHA PSR-520

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2017 Charles Walter 1500 in semi-polish ebony
1991 Kawai 602-M Console in Oak
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Oh, so since that is THE piano, is that polished walnut? Polished mahogany? Polished something else? And how do you tell? Is it solely the color, or the wood grain, or what?


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Yep, I have a YouTube channel!

Current:
1998 PETROF Model IV Chippendale
LEGO Grand Piano (IDEAS 031|21323)
YAMAHA PSR-520

Past:
2017 Charles Walter 1500 in semi-polish ebony
1991 Kawai 602-M Console in Oak
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I thought that might be it, but didn't want to assume!

You've hit on the reason that I usually just say "wood grained"! wink But I'd call that mahogany, because it's usually more "red" than walnut is. Walnut tends to be brown.

And, naturally, it's not that simple, because the color can be stained different than the underlying wood.

But unless someone knows more specifically, I'd call that polished mahogany. thumb


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Looks like polished mahogany to me! My Petrof upright was flame mahogany and was the same color smile


2001 Petrof 125 -> 2002 Petrof IV -> 1999 Bösendorfer 225
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