Great Selection Of Grand Pianos ~7′ Size Class

When customers are looking for new or pre-owned performance instruments, PianoWorks has always had great choices.  Currently, our selection is better than usual, with a tremendous number of pianos around the 7′ size class.  This size class for instruments is targeted to professional musicians, recording studios, small venues, churches, and those devoted to the sound a great piano can make.  Naturally, this makes it one of the most competitive size classes with many piano makers making extra effort to present flagship-level instruments.

Below is a current list of these instruments listed alphabetically, plus a brief description.  The pianos range from 6’9″ – 7’5″.

  1. Bösendorfer 225 – Simply the best; this famed Austrian maker has both the finest and most exclusive instruments in the world.
  2. Estonia L210 – New design from this invigorated maker; Estonia is generally considered to have the best value among the elite piano brands.
  3. Grotrian 208 Studio – one of the few elite makers to challenge Bösendorfer, this piano has unmatched purity & special “Studio” finish that is tough enough for college practice rooms or backstage.
  4. Hailun HG218 – Designed by Stephen Paulello, this piano is currently the flagship of the reigning, 2-time Acoustic Piano Line of the Year – MMR magazine.
  5. Kawai GS-50 – Pristine, pre-owned Japanese piano, the GS-series were the Artist-level predecessor to the current GX-series; a bargain for a big piano.
  6. Seiler SE208 – Clarity, warmth and control, Seiler is a best value among elite German makers
  7. Steinway C – rare opportunity, this freshly restored instrument offers Steinway’s tremendous range of musical colours.  This piano does more the perennial favorite Steinway B.

Just below our size cutoff, I would have to include two 6’7″ instruments from our current inventory:  Bösendorfer 200 & pre-owned Yamaha C5.

A few additional models from our makers are available but not currently in stock including Bösendorfer 214, Estonia L225, Grotrian 225.  Coming soon will be 2 restored Steinway model B’s among others.  While no ETA is yet given, we have a vintage Mason & Hamlin BB waiting its turn for restoration.

Finally, we will leave you with this video of the Bösendorfer 225 #50.000.  As an authorized Bösendorfer dealer, this piano is can be purchased from us even though it is not currently in our showroom.  The price is $750,000 for this one-of-a-kind Artisan piano.

Another Happy Estonia Piano Owner!

Piano shopping can be a real task or a truly wonderful experience.  We work hard to make it both educational and fun.  We are always delighted to get customer feedback on our business.  Of course, it helps when you get to represent great piano makers like Estonia!

Thank you Linda for giving us the opportunity to earn your business.

-The PianoWorks Staff

PianoWorks Piano Pick of the Month: Hailun 218 and 178B

Once a month, PianoWorks will be choosing a piano from the showroom floor or from our very own restoration shop in the basement. We will be sharing information and photos of the piano, as well as answer any questions you may have about the piano.

Hailun Pianos are known among the finest sounding, best engineered and best crafted instruments from the east. Hailun Chen lead the company in China for over 20 years and only accepts the best from his company. PianoWorks carries Hailun Pianos and we’re currently featuring the 218 and the R178B.

The Hailun 218 is a lot of piano for the price. The semi concert grand sells for the mid $20,000′s, while a comparable piano in different brand would sell for thousands more. Recently, PianoWorks sold a Hailun 198 to the Atlanta International School for its value.

This piano, designed by Stephen Paulello, who is a university professor of piano and chamber music. Paulello also completed his education as a piano technician with Bechstein and Steinway & Sons and was in charge of concert service for Bechstein in Paris, then spend time in Germany working on this piano building skills.

The 178B has an uncommon style with the Bird’s Eye Maple accents. It has a great sound and a European Design.

If you would like more information on Hailun Pianos or any other pianos, check out our website.

Products and Brands: Schimmel Pianos

Once a month, we will be discussing the Products and Brands that PianoWorks currently carries. We will highlight the pianos we have in the showroom along with a little company information.

Quality will prevail.

This is the slogan Mr. Whilhelm Schimmel built his entire piano business. That little piano business, started in 1885 in Leipzig, Germany, is now four generations strong, and the Schimmel family is building some of the world’s finest pianos.

The second generation in the Schimmel family was Wilhelm Arno who took over management in 1927. He relocated the company to Braunschweig, where Schimmel is now located. Later, Nikolaus Wilhelm took over management and really focused on expanding the Schimmel brand. Over 20 years, Nikolaus developed the Konzert Series, which was the key to their current position in the piano market. In 2003, Hannes Schimmel-Vogel took over management and developed the Konzert Series even more with the Vogel.

The Schimmel Sons aren’t the only generations in the company. Many of the factory workers are sons, daughters, grandsons and granddaughters of factory workers from the early Schimmel years. These workers have been known as fine craftsmen and the “masters of good tone.” Some of these workers are the artists that create the instrumental timbre, that is formed by extensive needling, which is needed several hundred times per hammer. This requires a well-trained ear, and cannot be replaced by machine. In addition, over 10,00 metal, wood and felt elements make up a Schimmel keyboard and action. All elements of each instrument must all be meticulously synchronized with exact precision: from the fitting of the strings, the positioning of the hammer-heads and the regulation of the action to the fine art of tuning and voicing.

In 2010 Schimmel Pianos celebrated their 125th anniversary. Schimmel pianos are well-known for being the largest company in Europe, as well as winning several awards across the country. A few weeks ago, PianoWorks had a visit from Glenn Clutter, Director of Sales and Promotions of Schimmel Pianos.

Recently, PianoWorks had a visit from Glenn Clutter, Director of Sales and Promotions for Schimmel Pianos. His favorite part about working for Schimmel is the people he works with every day.

“My favorite part about working for Schimmel is the people who purchase the pianos and the people who sell the pianos,” said Clutter. “It’s a very loyal business, and they’re proud to sell and proud to own a Schimmel.”

On their newest pianos, Schimmel stamps the brand name and factory location on every piano. Clutter says this is a something Schimmel is proud to do.

“Our pianos are really made in Germany,” said Clutter. “We’re so proud of that we display the city, country and our name on every piano.”

PianoWorks is the Authorized Schimmel Piano dealer for Georgia. For more information on our Schimmel pianos, click here.

PianoWorks Piano Pick of the Month: Estonia Studio Grand

Once a month, PianoWorks will be choosing a piano from the showroom floor or from our very own restoration shop in the basement. We will be sharing information and photos of the piano, as well as answer any questions you may have about the piano.

As a new arrival to PianoWorks, this Estonia Studio Grand has made quite an entrance. Made in 2000, this Model 168 grand made of polished Bubuinga and is 5’6″ long.

This piano has been lightly used over the years and comes with the original cover, key and warranty documents. Though the documents are no longer valid, it shows the piano was well taken care of and is in great shape.

This piano has a Renner action and has a great European sound. It doesn’t sound like most pianos, but has a nice clean sound. It’s a great purchase for anyone looking for a great instrument with a unique great look. In fact, this great look is so unique that there are less than 50 pianos like this one ever made.

But this old style hand built piano comes at a price. You can be the owner of the Bubuinga Estonia Studio Grand for $14,285. For more info and a few more pictures check out our website.

Bosendorfer Selection: Take a Trip to Vienna!

Yesterday, Ray Chandler of Bosendorfer Pianos, a Yamaha Keyboard Division visited our store in Duluth, GA.  We welcomed Ray both as a caring and knowledgeable business partner and also because he’s such a nice guy.  His travels brought him from Boise, Idaho looking for better weather.  We spent the evening catching up on business matters including a fantastic new program from Bosendorfer this Winter.

For our very special Bosendorfer customers, we keep a select inventory in our showroom, but for the full compliment of Bosendorfer’s offerings, a trip to their home in Vienna may be a once in a lifetime opportunity!  Starting December 1, 2010 until February 28, 2011, Bosendorfer will welcome you to their New selection room including a factory tour and a demonstration of the ultimate reproducing piano system, the CEUS.  For full details, contact us or your local Bosendorfer Piano dealer.  We would love to welcome you to the Bosendorfer family.

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Upright Obsession: Grotrian Concertina special order

Okay, so I’m having some fun with the title of Perri Knize’s Grand Obsession, but since her novel stars (spoiler alert!) a Grotrian grand piano and this blog stars a Grotrian upright piano, I didn’t think anyone would mind.  Among the many fine pianos we represent, Grotrian are among the most exclusive, and it takes just the right customer to dig past the usual names to uncover this crafted masterpiece.

To know our market is to recognize that spacious homes usually accompany the purchase of our top brands.  Here in the South, our homes and rooms tend to be bigger than other markets, so when someone crosses into the price range of grand pianos, they rarely look back at top-of-the-line upright pianos.  As long as we have represented Grotrian, I only remember one serious inquiry into their upright pianos, though we always find a few grand customers that are perfectly matched with a Grotrian.  I was certainly surprised this fall when a customer visited our store unannounced looking for Grotrian, and specifically their uprights.

We met after he had traveled a bit, visited with other dealers and comparing other pianos and at first, our progress was slow.  I could tell he had become overwhelmed when his desire to bring truly fine music into his home had become, well, less than fun.  My second challenge was that I did not have a Grotrian upright for him to try.  After breaking the ice, we spent hours delving into learning his preferences, comparing the design philosophy of different makers and clearing a path to match his expectations.  When we parted, I could tell we had made progress and what he learned of Grotrian exceeded his expectations.  Over the next week, we finalized plans to bring him a Grotrian Concertina upright.

While checking with the factory, there was one Concertina in production nearing completion.  The piano would then be crated and flown to the airport where we would pick it up.  This process, normally quite smooth, was held up because of new enforcement of an old regulation called the Lacey Act.  I became an instant expert while naming the wood species and quantity of all the different woods used in the construction of the piano.  I had never been asked down to the species.  Still, the piano was well protected during the efforts of Customs to comply more than we’d ever complied before!

The piano was gently uncrated and given final preparation before delivery.  The piano was outstanding, delivering on each careful promise.

The piano was safely delivered to an excited family where I’m sure it will be cherished for generations.

Do I Need Piano Insurance? Guidance For Piano Owners

We field so many questions for our customers, and one that comes up from time to time is, “What kind of insurance do I need for my piano?”  Thankfully, the answer for most people is that your piano is covered under your homeowner’s policy, however there are precautions you can take should the unexpected happen.  There are so many kinds of pianos and so many kinds of insurance that you should also make a phone call to your agent to clarify your own needs.  This article addresses questions from the piano owner’s perspective.

A piano is a significant investment for most people, and because of its long lifespan, it will travel with you through life…come what may.  One of the most basic protections you can give yourself is to make a good record of what piano you actually have.  Keep a record of the piano’s brand, serial number, model if possible, and size.  I also recommend taking a few photos.  Replacement value is often determined by this information.  Any time a piano changes ownership, it’s good to have an estimate of value.  Your receipt can serve as this, but if you inherit a piano, it is worthwhile to have an appraisal.

Most homeowner’s policies have coverage limits as well as special limits on certain items like jewelry, computers, firearms, collectibles, etc.  Your piano will probably fall under general household goods, but it may warrant a personal property insurance rider.  It is also worth reviewing your policy for terms like “market value” or “replacement value.”  When insuring a piano, you want “new replacement value” or the option to make satisfactory repairs to your original piano.  It is increasingly difficult to replace a used instrument with a similar used instrument either because of availability or establishing equivalent condition.

What to do when something bad happens.

You’ve had a small fire in your home.  The piano received smoke damage.  You may not realize, but the piano also likely experienced damage from intense dry then wet condition (putting out the fire).  Or you had a tree fall and damage your roof allowing the rain to come in.  Or you had a pipe burst leading to flooding.  You need to call a professional piano mover to remove the piano and place it into climate controlled storage right away.  You do not want the piano in the home when they are doing standard reclamation and further subject the piano to a harsh climate.  You can later get detailed evaluations of the piano’s condition and consider your options.

Because a piano is so environmentally sensitive, it is sometimes the reclamation period that does the worst damage.  As an example, there was a business in Atlanta that had damage to the roof, rain coming in for several days.  The piano was in the room, but not in the direct path of the rain.  To dry out the room, large heaters and fans were brought in and the room sealed.  We arrived to remove the piano just a few days later.  The indoor temp was near 100 degrees, and humitidy very low.  The ribs were now separated from the soundboard initiating the need for full restoration.  The necessary level of repair would have been much less had we gotten to the piano sooner.

Should your piano be in the direct path of the damage, it will be your records and accurate description that will be most valuable in satisfying your claim.

What to do if your piano is damaged in transportation.

Home movers have varying degrees of experience when it comes to moving pianos.  They also tend to have less specialized equipment than professional piano movers.  If your piano is damaged in transportation, it most likely falls to the responsibility of the moving company and their insurance.  It is probably not covered under your homeowner’s policy.  If the damage is superficial, document the incident and speak with the moving company.  Most will sub-contract the repair work or just ask for the repair bill.  There are finish repair specialists for pianos to handle the variety of finish types.  You may need to contact a local piano dealership for a recommendation.

If, however, the damage seems more than superficial, it may be best to refuse delivery and initiate the claim offsite.  If you have already accepted delivery of an internally damaged piano, contract a reputable repair company to assist you.  Be patient.  Sometimes these cases can be very slow to resolve.  You may or may not be able to negotiate a loaner piano during this period.  Keep in mind that your piano’s value may be tough to determine, but replacement value is much simpler.  The important question for the policy holder is, “Do the repairs have to cost more than the current value or more than the replacement value to be ‘totalled’?”  Keep that in mind as you review the suggested repairs.

If you are in the extended metro-Atlanta area and are in need of support for your piano as part of an insurance claim, please contact us and we can assist you from beginning to end.

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Recent Customer Letter: Hailun Grand Piano

This is a much belated  thank you to you, Don, Cindy,
Chris, Dennis, and now Fred, as well as Hailun Chen and Mrs. Chen for this magnificient piano.

I most humbly thank GOD for this extrodinary “dream come true” and all of the people that brought it to fruition.

Anything, and everything in my association  with PianoWorks has exceeded my expectations in excellence and professionalism.

Piano Works is simply the very finest in the piano spectrum from start to finish.  Period.

I look forward to a long term association with the PianoWorks family… the Hailun Grand is just amazing, Chris delivered it flawlessly, Dennis Nunnelley is simply brilliant and I am grateful for his patient instruction, Fred Brown is a phenomenal piano technician that has the unique gift of matching the “voice” of the pianist to the piano. He has a discerning quality of “sounding”, just as you and your family match the prosepctive owner to the piano.

That is whats sets PianoWorks apart from all the rest in the industry.

Casio Celebrates Anniversary with Limited Edition Celviano AP-6 Digital Piano

Casio has making keyboards for 30 years now, and when the bean-counters reviewed their books, they found that Casio had produced over 70 million keyboards & musical instruments.  70,000,000 ?!?!  Casio has committed to making good quality, always affordable digital pianos and keyboards, and with those numbers, they have changed the world.  Marking their anniversary, in contrast to their usual mass produced efficiency, Casio has created a limited edition (just 2000 worldwide) digital piano with a polished ebony finish befitting a grand piano.  The Casio Celviano AP-6 is beautiful…and our small allotment arrived today!

The Celviano AP-6 is based on their flagship AP-620 design.  Like the AP-620, the AP-6 is full of great features you can read all about, but I want to keep this a blog and not just a sales pitch.  Casio also introduced another limited edition stage piano today, the Privia PX-3.  I’m speculating, but if this model is successful, I can see Casio putting some future pressure on the established stage piano brands in the same way their successful Privia & Celviano lines have in the digital piano market.  People like Casio, and with their great instruments of recent years, they can also take them as a serious contenders in the home market for digital pianos.  A digital piano like the AP-6 makes a statement, “Casio makes beautiful contemporary pianos that consumers are proud to display in their homes.”  Okay, that’s my statement, but it’s just as true as their old statement, “We’re good…just look at our low price!”

Casio is an ally to consumers during tough financial times.  Just today, 3 career piano technicians sat around a table in my store after hours and all agreed that they’d rather see their customers buy a good digital piano to start with rather than the terrible hand-me-downs and neglected, unwanted pianos that are financial mistakes.  They went on to share a few recent horror stories where a family would’ve been better off with something like our Casio & Roland digital pianos.  At the risk of taking a few less calls to tune-up grandma’s old clunker, these tuners, like me, would prefer to see customers evolve with us.  Casio’s improved products now dominate the market especially $1000 and under.  The AP-6 is now Casio’s top of the line product, but has kept a street price of below $2000.  Remarkable.

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