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Originally Posted by pianoloverus
Originally Posted by jivemutha
Originally Posted by pianoloverus
The reasons people choose a piano don't have to be and aren't always logical

Absolutely. If someone is willing to make an illogical choice, I agree anything is possible. I'm sure this happens. What you've come up here with (besides cost and space and my comment about casual players understandibly not wanting to overspend even if the money is there) should indeed be added to our list of choosing GC1 over GC2: illogic. I don't disagree.
Good. Then you shouldn't disagree that your post:

"Before jumping, are you aware that people generally lock in on a C1 or GC1 primarily because the space simply doesn't exist to consider the next size up?"

was based on assuming other buyers used the same logic as you did or even that they were logical at all.


Well, I certainly won't agree with the apparent spin put on "the same logic as [I] did" as it implies I'm using some special kind of logic. I'm using common sense, supported by Yamaha's advertising, the price differential, and the sound differential. There's no special pertaining-to-me-alone logic at all.

About the "or even that they were logical at all" I'm afraid I have to agree with you there grin!

As you continue to not acknowledge that you have or have not actually played both in the same space, I have to assume that the energy you put into trying to refute what's self evident(again--probably regarding MOST but not all people) may possibly come from simple ignorance (not having heard the sound difference). Play 'em! Price 'em! At this point I don't think any amount of logic will necessarily change your mind, but at least I'm guessing your subconscious mind would then know that perhaps you're just being a bit stubborn smirk!

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Originally Posted by jivemutha
Using Larry Fine's equation, a room with a perimeter of less than 58 feet (say a room that's 12X16) simply can't deal with the sound of a 5'8" grand. (I've found Fine's equation to be on target. After hearing my C2 in our 60' perimeter room, I'm sure C3 would have blown the room apart--boomy, too much volume, etc. And yes, I know in a bigger space, a C3 sounds way better than a C2.)


I wouldn't pay any attention to that equation. Except for bass response, there is nothing that inherently makes a longer grand louder than a shorter grand. What typically makes grands loud are various design factors, including hammer weight and hardness, string tension, and soundboard design. In my experience, Yamahas are loud pianos with their hard, dense hammers and high-tension scales. I recall being in a large piano showroom where someone was playing exuberantly on a C3, and I thought the volume level was way high, even for that space. You could take, just for an example, a 5' 10" Steinway O, and put in unjuiced NY Steinway hammers or perhaps Ronsen Bacon hammers and the piano would sound sweet instead of strident, and not be nearly as loud as a shorter Yamaha.

Many, if not most, grands are too loud for home use, IMO. People try out new pianos in stores that are typically much larger than living rooms, and are impressed by loud pianos. Salesmen describe these loud pianos as "powerful" pianos, and who isn't impressed by power? Methinks most consumers would be very wise to buy grand pianos whose tone and touch they like, and whose volume level is lower than typical.

Last edited by Roy123; 03/13/12 12:43 PM.
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Originally Posted by Roy123
I wouldn't pay any attention to [Larry Fine's piano size vs. room size] equation.


First, of course I agree that there's much more to a piano than volume (and you're getting that from a Yamaha player!).

Larry Fine is so widely (though admittedly not quite universally) respected that it's hard for me to just throw out his advice on the basis of any one person's comment--no offense meant. And yet . . .

As you say, Yamahas tend to produce more volume than many other pianos (even the U series of uprights would qualify IMO). Thus even if Larry Fine's equation might not necesssarily apply to all grands, it actually worked remarkably well for my Yamaha (5'8" in a 60' perimeter room). Of course "too loud" is necessarily subjective, but to my ear, like Goldilocks's third bowl of porridge, the 5'8" C2 sounds just right for the space (essentially in keeping with Fine's equation). C3s are quite a bit louder than C2s. That's why I'm guessing a C3 would not have worked volume-wise, at least to my ear, in my 12X18 space.

Arguably in keeping with what may be the sentiments of your comments, if I had to choose between Goldilocks's "first bowl" (in this case, too quiet) and her "second bowl" (in this case, for my ears and my room, a piano--at least the Yamaha C3--exceeding Fine's equation) I'd go with bowl number one (perhaps a sweet YUS5--a piano that proves that the stereotype of all Yamahas being "too loud" sometimes may need some qualification) grin!


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Originally Posted by jivemutha

Larry Fine is so widely (though admittedly not quite universally) respected that it's hard for me to just throw out his advice on the basis of any one person's comment--no offense meant. And yet . . .


Well, if we're really splitting hairs, it's Lewis Lipnick's advice within Larry's publication... smile


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Originally Posted by Roy123
Except for bass response, there is nothing that inherently makes a longer grand louder than a shorter grand.


I get that treble string length can be about the same in different sized grands (and even vertical pianos), and you acknowledge that bass volume increases with the length of a grand. So far I follow.

Here's what I'm not understanding: all other things being equal, why would a larger soundboard not increase volume throughout the whole 88 keys? Partially, I'm asking because when I switched from a U3 (52" upright) to a C2 (5'8" grand), I figured increased volume would primarily be in the bass. Surprisingly, that's not so (at least for these 2 instruments). The C2 has as much added volume all the way up the treble as down in the bass when compared with the smaller piano, despite presumably having related string length in the treble sections of both pianos. On the basis of what I'd previously read I figured this was about the size of the soundboard, at least in part.

Thanks in advance for a reply.

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Originally Posted by Roy123
Methinks most consumers would be very wise to buy grand pianos whose tone and touch they like, and whose volume level is lower than typical.


thumb

fingers


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Originally Posted by jivemutha
Originally Posted by Roy123
Except for bass response, there is nothing that inherently makes a longer grand louder than a shorter grand.


I get that treble string length can be about the same in different sized grands (and even vertical pianos), and you acknowledge that bass volume increases with the length of a grand. So far I follow.

Here's what I'm not understanding: all other things being equal, why would a larger soundboard not increase volume throughout the whole 88 keys? Partially, I'm asking because when I switched from a U3 (52" upright) to a C2 (5'8" grand), I figured increased volume would primarily be in the bass. Surprisingly, that's not so (at least for these 2 instruments). The C2 has as much added volume all the way up the treble as down in the bass when compared with the smaller piano, despite presumably having related string length in the treble sections of both pianos. On the basis of what I'd previously read I figured this was about the size of the soundboard, at least in part.

Thanks in advance for a reply.


Larger is not always louder when it comes to soundboards--in fact, sometimes smaller can be louder. I recommend that you search for some of Del's many posts about soundboards. He has infinitely more knowledge about their design than I, and can speak with much authority.

However, I can provide what I think might be an instructive example from the world of hifi speakers. Woofers are large, or, at least, function more efficiently when they are. Midrange speakers function best when smaller, and tweeters function best when smaller yet. For treble frequencies a 1-inch diameter cone produces more sound than a 12-inch diameter cone, even though the 12-inch cone has more than 100 times the area.

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Originally Posted by Roy123
Larger is not always louder when it comes to soundboards--in fact, sometimes smaller can be louder. . .


OK. If Del said it, I accept it. This still leaves me scratching my head. . .

If a larger soundboard does not create more sound--only, presumably better sound--and the treble strings are about the same length in my old U3 upright vs. my new C2 grand, then does anybody know specifically why the volume of the treble in the C2 is significantly louder than the volume of the treble in the U3? I'm more confused than ever. Thanks in advanvce if anyone knows the answer and supplies it here.

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Originally Posted by jivemutha
If a larger soundboard does not create more sound--only, presumably better sound--and the treble strings are about the same length in my old U3 upright vs. my new C2 grand, then does anybody know specifically why the volume of the treble in the C2 is significantly louder than the volume of the treble in the U3? I'm more confused than ever. Thanks in advanvce if anyone knows the answer and supplies it here.
Most of the sound from a vertical can't escape. It's more like playing a grand completely closed with a blanket underneath the soundboard.

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Also, the energy transfered when a hammer hits strings of the approximately the same length (like the treble strings of varying size pianos) at the same velocity would be similar. In those instances I don't think a larger soundboard would produce a louder tone.



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Originally Posted by Roy123
Originally Posted by jivemutha
Originally Posted by Roy123
Except for bass response, there is nothing that inherently makes a longer grand louder than a shorter grand.


I get that treble string length can be about the same in different sized grands (and even vertical pianos), and you acknowledge that bass volume increases with the length of a grand. So far I follow.

Here's what I'm not understanding: all other things being equal, why would a larger soundboard not increase volume throughout the whole 88 keys? Partially, I'm asking because when I switched from a U3 (52" upright) to a C2 (5'8" grand), I figured increased volume would primarily be in the bass. Surprisingly, that's not so (at least for these 2 instruments). The C2 has as much added volume all the way up the treble as down in the bass when compared with the smaller piano, despite presumably having related string length in the treble sections of both pianos. On the basis of what I'd previously read I figured this was about the size of the soundboard, at least in part.

Thanks in advance for a reply.


Larger is not always louder when it comes to soundboards--in fact, sometimes smaller can be louder. I recommend that you search for some of Del's many posts about soundboards. He has infinitely more knowledge about their design than I, and can speak with much authority.

However, I can provide what I think might be an instructive example from the world of hifi speakers. Woofers are large, or, at least, function more efficiently when they are. Midrange speakers function best when smaller, and tweeters function best when smaller yet. For treble frequencies a 1-inch diameter cone produces more sound than a 12-inch diameter cone, even though the 12-inch cone has more than 100 times the area.


The reason woofers are larger is because at low frequencies you need more air displacement for the same SPL. You can theoretically get the same SPL with a smaller cone, but the displacement requirements have a square'd relation to SPL. I.e., in order for a 2inch cone to move as much air as a 4inch cone, the 2inch cone will need to move 4 times farther than the 4 inch cone.

The reason tweeters (treble makers) are small is because in order to move a diaphragm fast (for high frequencies) with a reasonably small motor(voice coil - magnet system) the cone (or dome) needs to be as light as possible.

Small radiators also have better off-axis dispersion at high frequencies due to cancellation effects which is also why tweeters are small.



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Originally Posted by Steve Cohen
Also, the energy transfered when a hammer hits strings of the approximately the same length (like the treble strings of varying size pianos) at the same velocity would be similar. In those instances I don't think a larger soundboard would produce a louder tone.


OK--so string length is about the same in the treble sections of different sized pianos AND a larger soundboard does not increase volume.

Does this leave pianoloverus's explanation as the primary reason that the treble of the C2 is so much louder than the treble of the U3 upright--that the upright is all or almost all wrapped up and that the grand--at least the way many of us play it--is wide open? Is it really that simple? If it is, it is.

If so, that explains the volume. The improved quality of sound in the treble presumably must come from another quarter, and I have to guess that improved quality must have something to do with the big soundboard, no?

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Originally Posted by jivemutha
The improved quality of sound in the treble presumably must come from another quarter, and I have to guess that improved quality must have something to do with the big soundboard, no?


I'd say no. There are many other factors, including the more exposed soundboard, perhaps better termination of the string, perhaps the different orientation of the soundboard with respect to the pianist, perhaps a better strike line, perhaps different hammers. I believe Del has stated that the soundboard in most grands is too large in the treble area.

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Originally Posted by Roy123
Originally Posted by jivemutha
The improved quality of sound in the treble presumably must come from another quarter, and I have to guess that improved quality must have something to do with the big soundboard, no?


I'd say no. There are many other factors, including the more exposed soundboard, perhaps better termination of the string, perhaps the different orientation of the soundboard with respect to the pianist, perhaps a better strike line, perhaps different hammers. I believe Del has stated that the soundboard in most grands is too large in the treble area.


Which leads me to ask this question why not have a SEPARATE, smaller soundboard strictly for the high treble so we can reduce the moving mass, optimize the crowning, thickness and maybe possibly improve its frequency response and damping characteristics? I think you can do a lot of neat things if a sub-soundboard is not burdened with dealing with the force of the rest of the strings.

Loudspeakers have been designed this way for the last 60 years. I have the impression that speaker diaphragms and soundboards are more similar than different.

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