Newbie question: which piano to choose?

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Goaskyourdad
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Newbie question: which piano to choose?

Post by Goaskyourdad »

Hello everyone,

I'm planning to buy a beginner piano for my toddler to take lessons with, yet I know every little about pianos (I only took accordion for a few years when I was in elementary)

I have three options as the following:

1. Gerhard Heintzman for free. I believe this was a Canadian brand and made in Canada. This was my husband's grandmother's piano. It's probably over 20 years old and neglected most of the time . It's surprisingly in a decent shape i.e. still operable with only a few keys kinda sit slightly higher than the rest (not sure if this makes sense. I just meant all the keys are not flush with each other anymore).

2. Yamaha C100a for $1,700 CAD (about £970 GBP). Its barely used as no wear on the hammers and I'm confident the private seller is willing to lower the price by a few hundred Canadian dollars. Based on what I read on this forum (I learnt a lot about pianos on this forum, thank you everyone!), I know it's a cheaply made piano in Chinese pearl river factory with a Yamaha name. But again how fancy a piano has to be for a kid to take beginner lessons with?

3. I can always go buy a new piano like a Yamaha U1 or B1 etc. But husband thinks we don't need a fancy carriage before knowing the horse can actually run 🤣

Any advise is greatly appreciated! Ps: I will hire a piano technician to come to check out the piano of interest before buying anything.
chrisw
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Re: Newbie question: which piano to choose?

Post by chrisw »

Hello Goaskyourdad, this is an interesting post !

When I think of toddler I imagine a two year old, so rather young for piano lessons, but you may be thinking well into the future which is no bad thing.

I have the impression of the Heintzman having a substantial age much in excess of twenty years and also that it will need maintenance and perhaps remedial work. If this piano holds sentimental value then you could enquire just how much expenditure would be needed to bring it up to a good standard. Personally I am not keen on old pianos and if I was trying to encourage a youngster to learn, if at all possible, I would like to provide a piano that looked the part, but that is just a personal opinion.

When I search for Yamaha C100a on the internet nothing is coming up. Pearl River do make some good value pianos and it is likely to be well designed and hopefully of robust construction if it has the Yamaha name. Might be as well to get this piano inspected by a piano tech/tuner.

I can't see how you would go wrong with a new Yamaha U1, apart from emptying the coffers somewhat. You might also like to consider the Kawai K range of uprights, perhaps say the K300.
Having a nice piano could result in everyone in the household wanting to play.

Are you anywhere near one of the Merriam piano stores ?
Barrie Heaton
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Re: Newbie question: which piano to choose?

Post by Barrie Heaton »

Forget the Gerhard Heintzman and its more like 70 years old unless you're going to get a tuner to look at it
the C110A was made in China not a great piano it was superseded by the B1 far better piano made in Indonesia for Yamaha.

If you can afford it I would go for the U1 or 3 as it's a better long-term investment.


Ask your partner which would they rather drive to work in a Peel P50 or a Hyundai Accent both will get them to work.

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Re: Newbie question: which piano to choose?

Post by chrisw »

I should have known the Yamaha model number was C110a ! Searching on the internet this morning one comes up in Oxford, originally sold by Russell Acott ltd. When I worked near Oxford in the mid 1970s I remember the Russell Acott shop at the north end of Cornmarket but it had disappeared by the 1990s, although today I learn that it had relocated to an industrial estate. It was whilst I was near Oxford that I rekindled my interest with piano.
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Re: Newbie question: which piano to choose?

Post by Barrie Heaton »

Chrisw were you teaching at Oxford? Only been there once for a couple of days spent most of the time in churches and the pub. Rather bizarre, we did a church crawl during the day and a pub crawl in the evening. The church crawl was to see as many organs three a day; there was a recital put on at each one, and we inspected the organ workings.


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chrisw
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Re: Newbie question: which piano to choose?

Post by chrisw »

Hello Barrie, not teaching at Oxford but doing research (solid state physics) at a scientific establishment half way between Oxford and Newbury. Whilst there met my wife to be, who was born in Oxford so we used to go back quite often. After a Saturday shopping trip or visit to a theatre or concert we would visit one of three pubs in the centre for something to eat; The Golden Cross , Penny Farthing (both of these no longer there) and The Mitre on High Street.

One of my mates at the establishment built his own organ from which I learnt a great deal about how they work.

PS We resumed our piano group meeting in the hall three weeks ago. The piano was in good form as always.
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Re: Newbie question: which piano to choose?

Post by Barrie Heaton »

chrisw wrote: 19 Sep 2021, 12:42

PS We resumed our piano group meeting in the hall three weeks ago. The piano was in good form as always.
Do you have the dates I can put it on the website calendar.
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chrisw
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Re: Newbie question: which piano to choose?

Post by chrisw »

Previous was 4th Sept 2021.
Next one 23rd Oct 2021.

Thanks for putting them on the calendar. No other meetings booked just yet.
goffcritchley
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Re: Newbie question: which piano to choose?

Post by goffcritchley »

Buying a U1 for a toddler is a bit daft I think as it’s can be an expensive mistake if they don’t take to it. Get a second hand Casio digital off eBay. It will be good enough for basic techniques, you can turn it down, and you’ll not lose much money if it comes to needing to sell on again.

If they take to it then buy the U1 in a few years
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Re: Newbie question: which piano to choose?

Post by Barrie Heaton »

While I would agree you're not always sure who is going to be playing the piano more after a few months the duster or the children.

Having said that, buying a newish U1 is a good long-term investment as they do tend to keep the value. Children do go back to it later on, if it's there in the corner or in a high traffic area in the house they get played.


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