Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha U1?

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Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha U1?

Post by pop » 30 May 2011, 04:41

Hello! I know the Kawai has plastic parts made and sound is mellow while Yamaha piano is wood made and sound is brighter. Which piano do you think is better, the upright Kawai K3 or Yamaha U1 and why? Thank you for your answer.

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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by mdw » 30 May 2011, 14:05

They are both well made pianos from good makers. Its really down to which one YOU like the sound and touch of, its not one is better than the other they are just different. You shouldnt have any problems with either. The yam will show a bigger discount from list via the on line retailers as they have less self control than the Kawai dealers, but buy which one you like not what someone else recons is best. After all its going to sit in YOUR front room, its YOUR cash and YOUR the one playing it.

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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by Barrie Heaton » 30 May 2011, 15:16

pop wrote:Hello! I know the Kawai has plastic parts made and sound is mellow while Yamaha piano is wood made and sound is brighter. Which piano do you think is better, the upright Kawai K3 or Yamaha U1 and why? Thank you for your answer.
mdw has pointed out that both are good makes, I will just add that the Yamaha also has plastic parts in the action

My preference is Yamaha to work on, Kawai to listen to.... but if I had to have one in the house then it would be a Bluthner

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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by pop » 30 May 2011, 17:34

Thanks for the input. How about Kawai K5? Do you think the upright Kawai K5 should be better than Yamaha U1, by the way?

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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by vernon » 30 May 2011, 18:47

I would point out the "plastic" parts in the Kawai are carbon fibre which carries a rather more positive cachet than the word "plastic."
Aren't space ships made out of that?
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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by joe » 30 May 2011, 18:59

Kawai K3 is better value as the Yamaha U1 is almost 2k more at the proper retail prices,if price is not a factor would buy the Yamaha,other makes to consider are Essex 123 and Boston 118 and 126 models and Zinnermans would go and try as many pianos as possible,whats the budget?.

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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by pop » 31 May 2011, 03:11

I do not know the other brand name but see the most pianos are Kawai and Yamaha in the stores. Should I go for Kawai or Yamaha? Both of pianos salespersons say the opposite negative. The Kawai sound seems better in the low tone. But, Yamaha salesperson said the Yamaha piano holds more value and its good action. What is your opinion?
Last edited by pop on 02 Jun 2011, 19:02, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by mdw » 31 May 2011, 21:26

Buy the piano YOU like. Dont buy a piano you dont like just so IF you sell it in a few years time you might get a few hundred dollars more. One you have purchased new you have taken the first big hit in depreciation and its worth 25% less than you paid for it. Accept it and get on enjoying the piano. The cash is worth zip in the bank. What ever happens it will loose a hell of a lot less than buying a new car and in 20years time it might be worth more than you paid for it.

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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by sussexpianos » 13 Jun 2011, 15:26

This is really a personal thing to buy. Me being a Yam and Kawai dealer, they both have merits in technical and market place. An interesting point is Kawai seem to be getting their pianos in to quite a few major Arts places like Trinity, the Purcell School and the Yehudi Menuhin School. Kawai don't have the name that Yamaha does so if you are deciding to sell in the short time, then the Yam will be easier to sell but that should not be a reason to buy.
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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by MarkGoodwinPianos » 13 Jun 2011, 20:01

I find that a high percentage of customers DO care about resale value as it is a question that I get asked often. Yamaha does win on that count because they are in much higher demand so it is easier to get a quick sale for a good price.

Ideally though you should be doing what MDW has suggested and buy the piano that you like the most and ignore all other factors. If you don't enjoy the piano during your practise sessions you'll find that you regret the purchase throughout every bar of music that you ever play. If you buy the piano that you like the most, you will rejoice through every bar of music.
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email markgoodwinpianos@gmail.com with any Yamaha, Kawai, Bechstein or Steinway questions :)

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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by vernon » 13 Jun 2011, 22:11

I find few customers concerned with resale value. As pianos last so long,if a family keeps a piano through the shelf life of the teenagers then they will probably get a good price anyway after 20 years, especially if the crazy economy gets back in order.
After my Dad died in the 1960s I often had ageing parents wanting to sell their piano with the reminder that " Arthur always said he would give me what I paid for it if I ever came to sell."

Thatwas embarrassing news to me!
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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by Barrie Heaton » 14 Jun 2011, 20:08

vernon wrote:I find few customers concerned with resale value. As pianos last so long,if a family keeps a piano through the shelf life of the teenagers then they will probably get a good price anyway after 20 years, especially if the crazy economy gets back in order.
After my Dad died in the 1960s I often had ageing parents wanting to sell their piano with the reminder that " Arthur always said he would give me what I paid for it if I ever came to sell."

Thatwas embarrassing news to me!
So you have to give them £1 2s 6d one pound 2 shillings and six pence then :)



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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by vernon » 14 Jun 2011, 20:28

we only dealt in guineas.
In the 1980s we used to price our posh pianos in guineas(like racehorses) and it got us a lot of publicity especially when the Trading Standards stepped in and threatened us with at least deportation to the colonies or, at least, a spell in the Tower.

It was a bit of a problem translating into decimals tho'

The tradition used to be, when doing a deal in guineas you close by saying" ok then call it pounds and it''s a deal!"

Anybody remember that>
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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by sussexpianos » 16 Jun 2011, 17:15

I do like seeing the old warrantys and invoices of old pianos, they have the prices and also very common, how much a week they were paying. Interesting a lot of them needed the piano tuned every 3-4 months by the shop to keep the warranty. A lot of piano tuners needed in those days.
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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by Grenache » 17 Jun 2011, 22:58

Hi,

Re the original question of K3 v U1. I'm a player, not a tech, but I compared the two when I was looking to buy a few years ago.

I liked them both, the K3 has a mellow sound whereas the Yamahas are known for their bright sound.

In my case, I wanted one with the silent action factory-fitted, and the dealer was able to let me try both. The silent action does make the touch heavier, but the U1 was not particularly noticeable. However in the case of the K3, I found it very heavy, so much so that my wrists were sore after playing it for a while.

If you are going for the silent option, I'd recommend the U1. If not, then choose the one you enjoy playing!

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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by Model V » 19 Jun 2011, 08:16

vernon wrote:I find few customers concerned with resale value. As pianos last so long,if a family keeps a piano through the shelf life of the teenagers then they will probably get a good price anyway after 20 years, especially if the crazy economy gets back in order.
After my Dad died in the 1960s I often had ageing parents wanting to sell their piano with the reminder that " Arthur always said he would give me what I paid for it if I ever came to sell."

Thatwas embarrassing news to me!
Lovely story. :)

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Re: Ask piano technician – Do you prefer Kawai K3 or Yamaha

Post by sussexpianos » 22 Jun 2011, 15:39

Grenache wrote:Hi,

Re the original question of K3 v U1. I'm a player, not a tech, but I compared the two when I was looking to buy a few years ago.

I liked them both, the K3 has a mellow sound whereas the Yamahas are known for their bright sound.

In my case, I wanted one with the silent action factory-fitted, and the dealer was able to let me try both. The silent action does make the touch heavier, but the U1 was not particularly noticeable. However in the case of the K3, I found it very heavy, so much so that my wrists were sore after playing it for a while.

If you are going for the silent option, I'd recommend the U1. If not, then choose the one you enjoy playing!
This is down to how that perticular piano action was as the silent ATX does not interfear with the action. The ATX has sensors inside the action, not under the keys like other silent pianos. It uses optics which measures the hammer movement and not key movement, giving a better indication of the pianist's intention. Using optics, there is no contact. I would guess the action was needing abit of regulation as it should perform the same as the non silent piano.
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