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Upgrading from upright to grand (Read 542 times)

Offline 16106 chadbourne rd

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Upgrading from upright to grand
« on: July 17, 2020, 08:17:55 PM »
My son has been playing piano since age 6 and is now in high school. He is quite serious (takes lessons at local music conservatory) and has been outplaying the Essex Upright we bought when he was younger. He plays Chopin Etudes and Beethoven Sonatas and the upright keys won't pop up fast enough for him to strike the note again. He always wants the keys to get very quiet which he says upright keys can't do. He informs me it is time for a grand. I do not play an instrument, so I have read everything i could to educate myself. Here is my situation. The local Steinway dealer will let me use the essex trade in price of $6000 twds my next purchase. I hate to give this up. We can spend $20,000. With the $6000 that would put us up to $26,000 of purchasing power. This would let us buy a Boston GP- and maybe even a GP-178 if they have a recent used one (they carry some used pianos). I understand that many people don't find the sound quality good on a grand under 6 ft. I just don't see anyone loving boston baby grands, so it is not exciting for me to buy something that people have no love for. I realize it is not hand made. The action of the keys is what my son is going for. We don't care about the look. If we go for a different brand, we loose the $6000 credit. I am afraid to look at used Steinways, as I fear anything in our price range will require $20,000 worth of work once we bring it home. I have a technician who can look at used pianos with me, but still, I would have trouble trusting the history of a used piano. My questions: Is there a grand piano worth $20,000 that I can buy used or new that is worth forgoing the $6000 credit I have with the Steinway dealer? A piano that has better action than a boston grand in the 2 sizes I mentioned? Also, does the rule of a grand piano needing to be above 6 feet for best sound, also apply to the action? Or will the action of even a 5'1" boston baby grand be an improvement over the essex upright that is so frustrating my son. Appreciate any advice you sage pianists can give!

Offline orpheusmusic

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Re: Upgrading from upright to grand
«Reply #1 on: August 13, 2020, 09:13:03 PM »
In full disclosure, I play piano and after my husband retired, he opened a used piano store and then a new piano store. I have had the great pleasure of playing many, many instruments.

I would kindly suggest that you divorce yourself from the attachment to a "credit" from any dealer. The credit simply means they deduct any loss on your trade in from the discount they provide on the new piano. They simply look at the total profit/cost and you should too.

We work with many students in your sons position. The best advise we can give is to let your son play the major brands and decide which piano gives him the most joy. Each piano has different characteristics that will become apparent as he plays different instruments.

Beyond that, have a Registered Piano Technician (ptg.org) inspect any used piano you might buy before you make the purchase. The technician should give you an assessment of current condition and any work it might need both in terms or repair (defects or operational issues) along with an assessment of what might be done subjectively (voicing, touch, etc.)

You might also ask the teacher to recommend a Registered Piano Technician or a local dealer than is reputable.

I hope this helps somewhat on your journey.



Offline dogperson

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Re: Upgrading from upright to grand
«Reply #2 on: August 13, 2020, 10:11:55 PM »
What a refreshing post from a dealer—/ just the type of business that would get my purchase😊