Buying a new piano can be a stressful event. It's a lot like buying a new car - you want the best car for the best price, and you don't want to have to haggle with the salesperson. The same would be true when purchasing a piano.
When making a major purchase of any kind, there's probably nothing worse than walking away from the experience wondering if you really got the best deal, or ripped off big time.
So, a little knowledge will go a long way. Knowing what to ask and what to look for in a good piano will keep the salesperson on his or her toes.
If they think you know what you're doing, they'll be less likely to take advantage of you, which is true no matter what you're buying. In fact, buying a new piano should be an enjoyable experience, and it can be with a little home work on your part.
The Good, The Bad & The Ugly
Needless to say, there are good baby grand pianos and bad baby grand pianos. There are good uprights and bad uprights. There are good digital pianos and bad ones.
This article will focus on acoustic pianos, exclusively.
When purchasing a new acoustic piano, always inquire about the type of wood used in the construction of the soundboard. If you have a quality soundboard, then the chances are good that the other materials used are of high quality as well.
The quality of the wood used in the manufacturing of the soundboard is one of the most important factors. The soundboard must efficiently convert the string's vibration to sound and spruce is the best wood for this. Englemann Spruce and Sitka Spruce are the two best.
1.) Ask the salesperson if the soundboard was kiln dried. Kiln drying kills the "tone" of the soundboard wood.
2.) Also, ask what type of finish is used. Varnish finishes sound better than lacquer.
Of course, the most important thing to do when buying an acoustic piano: Listen to the piano, not the salesman.
In addition, don't make a purchase on your first trip to the showroom, no matter how great the deal sounds. Sleep on it, do some research on the Internet, ask friends and family who have bought or know someone who has bought a new acoustic piano.
If you're considering buying a new piano, please remember, it's a huge investment. Take your time and get it right. It's not something you can easily return if you're not quite happy with it when you get it home.
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