Yamaha GA1 advise please help

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Mooger
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Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

Hi everyone
I’m new to acoustic pianos as I’ve only ever had digital pianos untill now.
A local dealer has a Yamaha GA1 for sale at £5;750 which I’m considering buying …
He has told me it was sold by him brand new in 2007 .
It looks in very nice cosmetic condition …
My questions are as follows.

1 I’ve read somewhere that this particular piano model had tuning issues is that correct.?

2 Being 15 years old how much life would there be in the strings as they are original strings on it?

3 is £5,750 a good price for this model ?

4 He does have a brand new Kawai GL 10 in stock priced at £7,995 but I seem to prefer the touch and tone of the Yamaha
Would the Kawai GL10 sound better with age and usage?

Any help at all would be great.

Regards Paul
chrisw
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by chrisw »

I have never come across anyone saying that a GA1 had tuning stability issues but I wonder if this model had a fixed music stand very much like the GB1 which could make tuning rather more awkward. Personally I would prefer a piano with a sliding music desk.

At fifteen years old I would expect the strings to be fine but it depends just how heavily the piano has been used. Check the hammers for deep grooves and if they are only lightly marked the strings ought to be good. Is the dealer offering a guarantee? The price does seem rather good but is this another indication of more than average wear?

The new GL10 will probably sound a little better after it has been played in, tuned a few times and the hammers voiced but if you like the Yamaha better and are assured of its longevity that would be the one to go for.
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

Since I put this post on today I have found a Yamaha GB1K for sale at £7,000 and it’s only 5 years old so I’m going to get this one instead as it’s much newer and only just over a thousand pounds more and it comes with 5 year warranty at Bonners music
I’m guessing it’s a slightly better design than the GA1?
Any thoughts?
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Barrie Heaton »

Yes, the GBK1 is a better, improved scaling tweaks.
As to the tuning issues, the GA1 has bass string issues, mainly faults, and they do go dull after 10 years this makes it difficult for tuners who use electronic tuning devices, who use an ETD to tune the bass. Also, older GB1s have bass problems if played heavy. To supply and fitt a new set of bass strings its about £1,800.00

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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

Thank you so much for your advise.
Im going to view it in Surrey hopefully Monday
I will let you know how i get on
If you have time please advise what i should be looking out for and asking the salesman when inspecting a secondhand piano
Kind regards Paul
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Barrie Heaton »

Because you are buying from a retailer, the piano has to be fit for purpose; see what extras they will throw in like free delivery, a stool and free tuning in your home four weeks after delivery, also, insist it's tuned to concert pitch by the visiting tuner. You'll be surprised how many tuners on after-care visits just tune the piano where it is, which is a pain for anyone who has to follow.

A piano of that age shouldn't have many issues unless it's been abused.

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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

It comes with the following
1 free delivery
2 free adjustable stool
3 Humidity regulator
4 Tuned after 4 weeks of delivery
And 5 years warranty
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Barrie Heaton »

go for it and enjoy.

is the humidity regulator a piano lifesaver by any chance if so nice,

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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

I’m actually hoping to now see the piano on Thursday.
I’ve been sent some pictures in the meantime …
Would it be standard practise to ask to have rather action pulled out for me to inspect?
Not that I really know what I’m looking at lol
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Barrie Heaton »

In normal practice, you will get a piano tuner to go and look at the piano, if you look between the strings at the top treble, you can see the hammers, and see if they got any very deep cuts.

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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

Thank you for that advise i will check for that
Currently they have 3 secondhand pianos in store
Kawai GL30 at £9,999 2 years old
Kawaia GL10 at £6,599 2 years old
Yamaha GB1K at £6,999 5 years old

I have given them a holding depsit on the Yamaha
But will try all 3 pianos before i decied which suits me .

Im more into soul and jazz style music.
So i like the brighter tone of the Yamaha but my room the piano is going in is 12 x 16 ft room with laminated wood flooring so worried about how bright it would sound.

What are yout thoughts on this?
Regards Paul
chrisw
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by chrisw »

Looks like a good choice of used baby grands to choose from.

If your laminate floor is laid over concrete perhaps no need to worry. If it is over a suspended wooden floor I would consider placing a grand piano over some sort of rug. The room seems plenty big enough depending on the other furniture already present.
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Barrie Heaton »

The Kawai GL30 should have a nicer base and mid-range, which is great for jazz, but the Yamaha probably has better top trouble.

I do have a lot of all three models on my round, but I do like the Kawai GL30 over the Yamaha C1


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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

So after my visit to the piano store yesterday I bought the Yamaha GB1K
It will be delivered to me next week
There are 2 issues I bought up in conversation with the salesman
1 When depressing the middle pedal there is one note that doesn’t sustain which he said was an easy fix for the technician and will get it sorted .
2 when I lift some of the keys they don’t all drop freely back to their level position and have to be pushed back down.
But they all play freely when depressed in normal use
Is that a problem that really needs fixing and if so is it a simple fix in most cases
Other than these issues it is in immaculate condition…

My only concern is that some keys don’t drop so any advise would be very very helpful

Paul
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Barrie Heaton »

keys that don’t drop are caused by friction, either in the balance rail bushing or the balance pin hole or both. If the room it is going into is dryer than the shop, the keys may rectify themselves, if the room is damper the problem will get worse. (sticking keys )

I'll give it six months then have it serviced. Takes about 4 to 8 hours to service a Yamaha grand depending on how far away it is from the truth

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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

I have asked the shop o look into the issue .
I have 5 years warranty but not sure if this issue is part of a warranty claim…
Should I be worried about this?
The piano is only 5 years old from new
I did also notice the same problem on a few other pianos in the shop
Paul
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

Im guessing it will be serviced by the Shop I’m buying it from Bonners in Surrey .
Anyone know if they are a decent piano supplier ?
They assure me that they are going to fix the issue with the keys …. But I’m now considering taking a trip back to them to make sure it’s right after work has been carried out before they have it delivered to me.

Paul
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Barrie Heaton »

Paul, it's not an uncommon problem with Pianos that come from showrooms it's not an issue to worry about it's fixable. The piano was probably never prepped at the original retailers.

After five years, Pianos need to be serviced, and they are best serviced on-site at your house, not at the shop. Particularly where voicing is concerned.

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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by chrisw »

I have watched many YouTube videos produced by Bonners and they give me the impression of being very reputable dealers. I have also seen at least one pianoworld forum thread which recommended them as dealers.
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

That’s all good things to hear…..
As I said I’m not used to acoustic pianos ( real pianos ) lol
I was beginning to get very concerned after giving them the cash and walking away waiting delivery.
Ie one key not sustaining when depressing the middle pedal and some of the notes not dropping when lifted…

I think what I’m going to do is what untill the jobs that need doing on the piano are done and drive back to Surrey to make sure the issues have been put right before they deliver it to me..
As long as it’s not a huge issue I’m very much looking forward to getting it.
Paul
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by chrisw »

Mooger wrote: 09 Sep 2022, 08:50
2 when I lift some of the keys they don’t all drop freely back to their level position and have to be pushed back down.
But they all play freely when depressed in normal use
Is that a problem that really needs fixing and if so is it a simple fix in most cases
Other than these issues it is in immaculate condition…

Provided each key plays normally, i.e. is not too heavy to press and on release immediately returns to the at rest position I would be tempted not to have any adjustment made to the fact that keys do not drop after lifting them at the front. Barrie will hopefully correct me if I am wrong but it is a nice snug fit of the felts around the balance rail pin and pin at the front of the key that causes the friction preventing dropping back and the fact that other than the dead weight of the key there is no force on it to make it drop. The felts are meant to be a snug fit to prevent the keys moving sideways when they are being played.
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Barrie Heaton »

chrisw wrote: 10 Sep 2022, 09:16
Mooger wrote: 09 Sep 2022, 08:50
2 when I lift some of the keys they don’t all drop freely back to their level position and have to be pushed back down.
But they all play freely when depressed in normal use
Is that a problem that really needs fixing and if so is it a simple fix in most cases
Other than these issues it is in immaculate condition…

Provided each key plays normally, i.e. is not too heavy to press and on release immediately returns to the at rest position I would be tempted not to have any adjustment made to the fact that keys do not drop after lifting them at the front. Barrie will hopefully correct me if I am wrong but it is a nice snug fit of the felts around the balance rail pin and pin at the front of the key that causes the friction preventing dropping back and the fact that other than the dead weight of the key there is no force on it to make it drop. The felts are meant to be a snug fit to prevent the keys moving sideways when they are being played.
On an upright piano, the key should be lifted to the top of the balance pin and it should fall under its own weight, that is the correct resistance.
We have a special tool for the balance pinhole and a pair of key easing pliers to ease the bushings. If done correctly the key should drop, but the hole should be not large enough to allow the key to move backwards and forwards, on the balance pin.

On a grand piano it's more complex but it's the same principle.

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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

I went back to Bonners today to make sure the few things that required doing had been done..
It’s has polished up absolutely as new….
All keys seem very well balanced and any signs of dust have been cleaned from the soundboard..

I’m simply over the moon with it.

All being good it will be delivered next Friday 23rd September.

A huge thank you to you all for taking time to advise me on my purchase….

Regards Paul
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

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chrisw
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by chrisw »

Looks lovely. Congratulations.
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Barrie Heaton »

Enjoy and look after it. Once it's settled in, you'll have to post a couple of songs you've played on it.


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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

Looking for area in my lounge to put my piano
Is having the rear of the piano 2 ft from a radiator too close ?
Paul
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by chrisw »

Do you have an alternative position further away from the radiator ? Two feet may be ok but if the radiator raises the temperature of the air around the soundboard it will drop the humidity. The humidity immediately below and above the soundboard ideally needs to be at 40%-60%. Buy a hygrometer and measure the relative humidity.
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

Hi everyone
I have some very bad news …. I’m afraid I was getting complaints almost straight away from next door after getting the piano so I have been almost forced to call the store and send it back … all I have lost is the delivery costs which is £300 to have it returned….
My only other choice is to buy a hybrid piano so looking to replace it with a Kawai NV5s.
Not the same I know but as close to an acoustic as I can get really .
The store have been very understanding ….
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by chrisw »

Oh no! Must be very disappointing.
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

Yes I’m very upset….however i went back to the store and had a demo of the Kawai NV5s and decided it’s probably my best option …
Ordered one which should arrive in a few weeks ….
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by chrisw »

Please let us know how you find the NV5 in terms of touch, repeatability of notes, resonance etc although I would expect it to be very much like an acoustic piano. I am quite impressed with the Kawai CA99.
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

I spent a number of hours trying out various digital pianos
The ca99 was very nice but I already have a Nord Grand .
My goal is to have an acoustic action so my only choice was to go for the Kawai NV5S or Yamaha MU1X I think it’s called ……
I went for the Kawai as the action to me felt amazing and the fact that it has a soundboard gave it a rich deep bass tone….also the Kawai has a much better user interface.
The dealer also told me that Kawais customer support is second to none
Seeing as it has a real acoustic action and soundboard I’m still going to watch humidity levels etc
I won’t get delivery of it till the end of the month
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by chrisw »

Just watched Bonners' video on the NV5. It looks really impressive. I wonder if Kawai will introduce a wooden soundboard into the NV10 in the next iteration.
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by Mooger »

Just to let you know I received my Kawai NV5s and love it…
String resonance is very nice and can be adjusted to suit
Note repeating is good for all playing but you do have to let the key raise fully to re trigger a note …. Something I’ve get used to very quickly …
Sound is full and round ….
I do find that the rendered piano is a little quieter than the standard samples for some reason.
And the touch screen can be a little slow ….
Much better using the Kawai piano app on an iPad
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Re: Yamaha GA1 advise please help

Post by chrisw »

Thanks for the update. It is good to know you are happy with your new piano.
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