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Estonia Pianos
Estonia Pianos
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Joined: Jan 2007
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emandlane,

Since you recently visited a store and played a 53 Knabe grand I thought that I'd add my two cents. A few weeks back I visited Cunnigham Piano in Philadelphia and had the opportunity to play the many fine grand pianos that they had on display.

One that really caught my attention and that I liked very much was the 6'4" Knabe. It might be more money or bigger than you had planned, but if you get a chance I would suggest playing one.

Good luck, John


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If a piano such as the Estonia appears to bright for some people, a dealer is well adviced to have at least one of the models somewhat voiced down.

The Estonia's hammer are 'Renners blue', a relatively easy hammer to work on.

Estonia is certainly not known for 'bright' tone, 'bright' - but with resonnance as are most top german brands, including Faziloli by the way - however, without some hammer work the tone of any one of these pianos might appear brighter than desired nonetheless.

For exactly that reason we sold an Estonia on Saturday and I suppose if your dealer would have given you a similiar option [many don't...] your take on this or any other make could have been a bit different.

Unfortunately for many shoppers picking a piano from a dealer floor is often a roll of the dice in terms of what this dealer "coincidentally" happens to have in stock at that time.

In many cases without focsued prepping by the dealer resulting in a variety of different tones [and impressions...] possible in any one make.

Norbert


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$12,600 for an NEW RX 3????? WOW!


Hale Thomas Ryan
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I gotta agree, $12,600 for a new RX-3 is an extremely low price. The dealer certainly must be really hurting for some cash flow.


Barry J "Bear" Arnaut ♫
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I would like to clarify the RX-3 piano. It is 12,600 and was built in 1996.

The Knabe I enjoyed playing was a WKG-58 in Satin Mahogany priced at $16,800 which included the trade-in of my beautiful priceless Story and Clark upright (Ha! Ha!). I may try the larger Knabe-64. I know the store I was in had a 7' but not sure about the 64. They had 6-7 Knabe pianos. Still don't know if my room will accomodate much more than a 6'.

Would appreciate feedback on price of Knabe and could someone also explain to me how vulnerabale grand pianos are to needing repairs. I must say besides tuning I have never had any work done on my piano and not knowing many others who have grand pianos have never known one to "break". Is this common and is that why they all come with a warranty?

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We were quoted $14,800 for a new Knabe 5'8" and my wife loved it. The sound and feel was incredible. When I asked around many told me that Knabe was now made by I think it was Samick or Young Chang and told to avoid them.

If we had not received the negative comments (which I appreciated) I'm certain that piano would be in our living room right now. My wife loves the Schimmel we bought but a Knabe fan she remains.


1987 6'10" Schimmel C-208.

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I had many yrs. of classical lessons as a child
and have been playing for more than 30 yrs.,
and I've gotten to the point where I can
play some big-time pieces, and yet I've
never owned a grand piano. So I'm a little
puzzled by this thing about getting a grand.
Frankly, I've never liked their shape.
The asymmetrical form might have some
functional value, but I'll take the
symmetrical boxy shape of an upright any day.
And I see no reason to disparage your S&C
upright. You can play anything on it
that you can play on a grand, and this
is the kind of solid, bulletproof piano
that will last several lifetimes. They
don't make them like that anymore. And
you're misusing the word "investment."
An investment is something that you
expect to rise in value over time, but
a new piano is going to drop in value
with time.

In any case, you should be in no rush
to buy, since you already have a good
piano. A general rule when shopping
for a new piano is that, when you seem to
have decided on one, you should then
go back and play it at least twice more,
because by the third time you try it
you'll begin to see it for what it really
is, not what the salesman is pressuring
you into seeing. And then you'll probably
see that it's not really any better
than your S&C.

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A grand piano sounds better. feels better to play and has aesthetic qualities. The action feels so much better and is much more responsive, faster (that is the repetition is faster, so trills etc can be done easier). All this has a bit to do with gravity allowing the hammers to fall back after striking the sting, whereas uprights need the mechanism to achieve this.

The sound of a grand piano is warmer, more sonorous and spacious. Cristofori invented this type of piano, called the "grand". The upright is a compromise. They are shoved up against a wall, with the soundboard facing the wall and the player turns his/her back on the audience.

I have had an upright for 35 or more years and have lost interest in them, especially after going shopping for a new pianos. I played a grand and there is no going back to uprights - no matter how more expensive the grands are.

Of all the pianos available in Australia near where I live, the best pianos (in my opinion) are Steinway, Boston (made by Kawai) and Kawai GE and RX series. The Kawai has a faster action and a more even tone in the scale than the Boston. Forget the rest!

The more one looks and plays the more one learns and discovers all sorts of things!

Best of luck and good wishes!


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Thank you for the clarification on the Kawai RX-3 being used. This is just the kind of occurance that I was riling about a few weeks ago. It is rare that the poster comes back to clarify. Thanks.

I am a big fan of both Wm. Knabe and Estonia. If the Knabe fits your budget better, I think it is a fine performance value. My wife Jennifer and I build furniture as a hobby and are always partial to the wood-look cabinets.


Co-Author of The Complete Idiot's Guide To Buying A Piano. A "must read" before you shop.
Work for west coast dealer for Yamaha, Schimmel, Bosendorfer, Wm. Knabe.
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This thread is a little old but I'll throw my 2 cents in. I was a mechanic in a new car dealership. I can tell you from experience DO NOT fall for the "certified" pre-owned story. That certification is only as good as the technician doing the checks. I looked at a used Wurlitzer priced at 12K $ US. The salesman told me it was a return and he could "let it go" for half the asking price. I started to look it over. The piano was in serious disrepair. A couple of hammers never moved off the string plus there were 2 repaired cracks in the soundboard. Looked like they were epoxy filled. The icing on the cake was the dead leaf with mildew on it INSIDE THE PIANO. I fished it out and handed it to the guy and said "I don't think you want this in there." I departed shortly after that.

I saw several money pit pianos before finding one I liked. Take your time, and have a technician look over the piano before you buy if you're not sure. You'll find something.


"An amateur practices until they get it right. A professional practices until they can't get it wrong." Julie Andrews
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I am "piano store nightmare person" because I do not shop in piano stores. I never even go into one. I would rather take my chances on the open market from an individual. I may be better at this than some persons. Just saw today a lady has a rebuilt 6'8" German Forster piano looks like new, for about $6k. I believe in having more than one instrument, and I'm getting to the point of not hesitating to put in new pins and restring myself. It's the "can do" approach. Kind of wish I had a shop space with a chain lift for frame. It's just a thing. Some people rebuild their own car engines. Main thing, you want the core to be good. That means a pretty short list of what I am looking for. Out of the pianos you mention- maybe the Petrov. Good luck. Oh and re shopping, for heaven's sake, you be the one who is in control. Don't play into the parlor games and leverage push-pull. You pay for value, exchange. That's about it.

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"2 repaired cracks in the soundboard. Looked like they were epoxy filled"

Aye yi yi! ewww

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> I see no reason to disparage your S&C
upright.

What is S&C? Smith Corona? Seriously I do not know. Thanks.

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Normally I don't respond to old threads, but this is a fascinating thread to look back on, being almost 12 years old! (And two others brought this back, not me!)

The Petrofs mentioned would have been different models and different parts than they are today. Hailun back then was getting praise as a high-quality, Chinese piano to definitely watch, but now when I talk to [former] Hailun dealers, they say they aren't the pianos people were hoping they would be back then. And Knabe came up a lot--those are just Samick stencils and I personally can't stand them, but people seem to like them, including a former professional colleague of mine. The OP even mentioned that they liked the dull, colorless sound of the Knabe, as they didn't like the more colorful sounds of the high-end pianos! Fascinating!!

It also seems, based on other replies in 2009, that people here were far more open about saying stencil pianos are garbage, where now in 2021 if you say that, you get blasted with people defending them.

I love the comment about how piano salespeople are reincarnated car salespeople. I don't get that same feeling on these forums where we have lots of dealers, but there are two dealers near me where that is most certainly the case! laugh The other two dealers near me aren't like that at all, though.

Anyway, it just goes to show how much things can change among pianos in 12 years. If this thread were started in 2021, it would be a lot different, I think. (Or maybe not.) Fun stuff.


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Originally Posted by MichaelET
> I see no reason to disparage your S&C
upright.

What is S&C? Smith Corona? Seriously I do not know. Thanks.
Story & Clark, probably.

Filled cracks on a soundboard is how they restore soundboards, even extremely high-end restorations. It's filled with wood with the grain a certain way and glue. I can see how, to the untrained eye, this can look like a problem.


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Originally Posted by Norbert
If a piano such as the Estonia appears to bright for some people, a dealer is well adviced to have at least one of the models somewhat voiced down.

The Estonia's hammer are 'Renners blue', a relatively easy hammer to work on.

Estonia is certainly not known for 'bright' tone, 'bright' - but with resonnance as are most top german brands, including Faziloli by the way - however, without some hammer work the tone of any one of these pianos might appear brighter than desired nonetheless.

For exactly that reason we sold an Estonia on Saturday and I suppose if your dealer would have given you a similiar option [many don't...] your take on this or any other make could have been a bit different.

Unfortunately for many shoppers picking a piano from a dealer floor is often a roll of the dice in terms of what this dealer "coincidentally" happens to have in stock at that time.

In many cases without focsued prepping by the dealer resulting in a variety of different tones [and impressions...] possible in any one make.

Norbert

Bingo! thumb With proper dealer prep Estonias are enchanting. Smooth action, full deep bass and a singing tone.

Yes indeed another Estonia eye roll. Either you love them or you don’t. I don’t get the whole Steinway thing either. smile


J & J
Estonia L190 Hidden Beauty
Casio Privia PX-330
My piano’s voice is beautiful!
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