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Yamaha YU3 versus YSU3 and YSU3SH (Read 3090 times)

Offline 510mev

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Yamaha YU3 versus YSU3 and YSU3SH
« on: November 30, 2015, 12:02:21 PM »
Hi,
Id really appreciate the thoughts of players (and parents) more experienced than myself at choosing pianos, and especially with knowledge of  old and new Yamaha YUs.
 
Ive narrowed it down to 3 Yamahas, all at the local dealership which is respected by our teacher, and which I think are doing their best for us.
1. A 2001 YU3 SZ (i.e. the silent option), at $9,000 Australian (just imported from Japan, not heavily used)
2. A new YUS3 (non-silent), available immediately and discounted from $15,995 to $13,000.
3. A new YUS3 with SH silent, special order 3-4 months wait, no discount, $15,995 + $3,500 for SH: so $19,495.
($Au is worth about 0.7US$ and 0.5)

The new YUS3 has some German components (Wurzen hammer felt, and Roeslau strings, added in about 2012, and in line with the C grand series); and the optional silent system is the updated SH.
 
There are a few angles which Im weighing up:
1. Main user will be my 6 y.o. daughter its early days, I know, but after 9 months shes still keen.  We added Suzuki to school lessons recently to help with technique and touch, and its confirmed our instinct to upgrade sooner rather than later. (Daughter is said to have good ears and perfect pitch but currently heavy hands + weak muscle Yamaha a good choice for this combo?)
2. I suspect that my daughter will always enjoy music, and want to play, which is why were considering a piano that ideally would last a long time, i.e. forever if needed.  Shes doing violin as well (school + Suzuki) all by choice. 
3. The silent option is ideal, so that we can double-up activities in the same room reading, homework etc. We do have enough space to keep things separate, but my 6 y.o. likes company, and Id like to be able to play silently myself. Longer term, our daughter could take it with her wherever she goes if she wanted, i.e., student accommodation.  On the older model, the silent system is 16 years old, with only a 12 month warranty compared with 3 years on the SH system (though Im told theyre all reliable for decades).
4. Feel, and sound: though Im not very proficient, the new YUS3 feels and sounds quite a bit better.  But perhaps Im subliminally influenced by knowing its newer and more expensive; also some say that German strings and felts give a richer/denser sound.  It does sound different overall to me, though theyre both lovely.
5. There is one note (a high C) on the 2001 model which to me feels very slightly different in terms of pressure, but neither the salesman nor my husband (both better players than me) can feel it.  So maybe its just my imagination, but its making me uneasy.  Ive asked the shop to get the tuner to look at it again, though I suspect that if there is indeed a problem its very subtle.   
6. Price: the new silent YUS3 is somewhat beyond our comfort zone; the non-silent YUS3 is more financially manageable; and the 2001 silent YU3 is obviously the one were most comfortable with (still a lot of money though). 
 
Basically, theres a $10,500 Au. difference between the silent 2001 YU3 and the new silent YUS3, with the new non-silent YU3 in the middle.  Is this a no-brainer?  Wed never buy a new car, so why am I so drawn to a new piano?!  On the other hand, I dont want to make a false economy. 
 
I havent complicated this by looking at Kawai, and also Im a bit hesitant to shop around too much, because I genuinely think wed get good future support from the local shop. 
 
Thanks in advance for any comments!

Offline iamazombie911

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Re: Yamaha YU3 versus YSU3 and YSU3SH
«Reply #1 on: December 01, 2015, 05:08:15 AM »
I will take a quick stab at this.
1. Main user will be my 6 y.o. daughter its early days, I know, but after 9 months shes still keen.  We added Suzuki to school lessons recently to help with technique and touch, and its confirmed our instinct to upgrade sooner rather than later. (Daughter is said to have good ears and perfect pitch but currently heavy hands + weak muscle Yamaha a good choice for this combo?)
It doesn't matter what her technique is like - she has to be able to play on any piano. Yamaha's are generally known to have light-action, but this should not be the basis of your decision. Kawai's are good practice pianos, because they are on the very heavy side of the spectrum, which makes playing on most other pianos that have lighter action a bit more manageable.

Offline iamazombie911

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Re: Yamaha YU3 versus YSU3 and YSU3SH
«Reply #2 on: December 01, 2015, 05:17:51 AM »
Ive narrowed it down to 3 Yamahas, all at the local dealership which is respected by our teacher, and which I think are doing their best for us.
1. A 2001 YU3 SZ (i.e. the silent option), at $9,000 Australian (just imported from Japan, not heavily used)
2. A new YUS3 (non-silent), available immediately and discounted from $15,995 to $13,000.
3. A new YUS3 with SH silent, special order 3-4 months wait, no discount, $15,995 + $3,500 for SH: so $19,495.
($Au is worth about 0.7US$ and 0.5)

If you are willing to spend this much money, I think that you should really consider opening up your choices a lot more. Only looking at Yamaha's and Kawai's seems very close-minded to me. There are so many choices that can be good fits - bechstein, baldwin, steinway, schimmel, etc. I would also highly recommend getting a grand piano over a keyboard/upright, (unless you/your daughter want to play things other than classical repertoire - then keyboard is a good idea). Personally, my neighbors live far away so I never need to worry about disrupting them, so my opinion may be a bit biased in this regard.

Offline 510mev

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Re: Yamaha YU3 versus YSU3 and YSU3SH
«Reply #3 on: December 04, 2015, 12:42:42 AM »
Thanks greatly for your responses!  We have decided to take your comments on board and will widen the search.  After all, a piano for decades is worth a few months of investigation.  I'll let you know what we come up with.

Offline iamazombie911

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Re: Yamaha YU3 versus YSU3 and YSU3SH
«Reply #4 on: December 10, 2015, 06:04:16 AM »
Please do! I wish you luck.