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Steinway Model A vs Model B (Read 4706 times)

Offline kjherlong

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Steinway Model A vs Model B
« on: November 05, 2014, 09:33:21 PM »
Good Day to all. I am new here and this is my first post. I am about to purchase a Steinway Model B, but I have concerns regarding its size and volume. The piano will be located on the ground floor of a 3,300sq ft (approx.) house. The home is somewhat of an open floor plan. The room it will be in is 16 X 16 with 10 feet ceilings and furnished with couches and a coffee table. There is hardwood and tile throughout the house. The sales associate is obviously pushing the model B, even after expressing my concern. Another sales associate, unaffiliated with Steinway, stated that any 7 foot grand in a space like that would create too much reverb and cause the sound to be muffled. I've asked around and get conflicting view points. I like both the Model A and B, but am not sure what to do. Can anyone offer any advice or related knowledge/experience? I'm worried I will end up with too much piano. Thanks for your help!

Offline iansinclair

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Re: Steinway Model A vs Model B
«Reply #1 on: November 05, 2014, 10:49:59 PM »
Phooey.  At that price point, if you like the instrument and its sound, and it likes you, it's the right one for you.  I have to admit I'd probably pick the A instead -- for me it's sound is a little better balanced -- but then, I have one which I'm in love with.

Either one will be big in that space (mine is in a 15 by 30 by 9 foot room, but not open plan) but muddy?  too much reverb?  No.  If you find you need to kill some of the reverb, an area rug will do the job very nicely, thank you.
Ian

Offline awesom_o

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Re: Steinway Model A vs Model B
«Reply #2 on: November 05, 2014, 11:10:35 PM »
You needn't worry about getting too much piano. A rug placed beneath either instrument will help to absorb excess sound. The lid should remain closed unless you are giving a concert for people.

Both the A and the B will be able to play extremely quiet, extremely loud, and everything in between.

In general, I find the B to be slightly less consistent from model to model compared to the A. The bass to tenor transition on the model B is not as smooth as the model A, and you may find the break point to be quite a bit more noticeable as a result.

On the model B, the highest copper-wound bass string is an E (the 2nd E below middle C), with the F next to it being the first note of the tenor (unwrapped steel trichord, or 3 strings per note).

The model A has a slightly smoother bass to tenor transition, with copper-wrapped strings in the low tenor area.

Are the pianos you are considering both brand new?

Offline kjherlong

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Re: Steinway Model A vs Model B
«Reply #3 on: November 06, 2014, 03:23:47 AM »
@ awesome_o - Thanks for the advice.  To answer your question, both pianos are brand new. I initially was looking at a used 2006 model B. However, the individual controlling the purse strings insists that the piano be new.

Offline awesom_o

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Re: Steinway Model A vs Model B
«Reply #4 on: November 06, 2014, 03:49:15 AM »
And are they American or German instruments?

Offline kjherlong

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Re: Steinway Model A vs Model B
«Reply #5 on: November 06, 2014, 04:13:05 AM »
They are American - New York Steinways made between 2013 and 2014.

Offline awesom_o

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Re: Steinway Model A vs Model B
«Reply #6 on: November 06, 2014, 04:25:05 AM »
Great! What a wonderful choice you have to make!

Had you answered 'Hamburg' I would have recommended you to seek out the much rarer model C, but as you are in the market for an American Steinway, this is not an option!

One option you may wish to consider is a fully rebuilt model AIII, or 'stretch A' as they are sometimes called. No longer in production, the AIII was in between the length of the modern A and the modern B, at 6 ft, four-and-a-half. The modern A is 6'2.

The AIII had an even smoother bass/tenor transition than the modern A, and a depth of tone in the bass that was closer to the model B, and is considered by many people to be one of the finest instruments ever produced by Steinway.

However, if you are only considering new Steinways, then it is between the B and the modern A.
A very exceptional B can be almost perfect, but many B's seem to be just average.

It really comes down to the individual instruments in question... how many of each model does your local dealer stock? Perhaps your teacher can help you find the best one. Don't let the salesperson influence your decision!

Offline quantum

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Re: Steinway Model A vs Model B
«Reply #7 on: November 06, 2014, 09:35:34 AM »
For home instruments, generally the concern is not enough reverb as opposed to the opposite.  You can always tune the reverb of your space with curtains, area rugs and furniture. 
Made a Liszt. Need new Handel's for Soler panel & Alkan foil. Will Faure Stein on the way to pick up Mendels' sohn. Josquin get Wolfgangs Schu with Clara. Gone Chopin, I'll be Bach

Offline cherp

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Re: Steinway Model A vs Model B
«Reply #8 on: May 01, 2015, 05:03:39 PM »
They are American - New York Steinways made between 2013 and 2014.

Did you end up purchasing an A or a B?