What are the Best Piano Brands? 2015 Update

hi welcome to virtual sheet music calm

and living piano stockpile I'm Robert

Esther in the video today is about what

are the best piano brands you know I

made a video in this subject I've got

five and a half years ago and so much

has changed in the industry I thought it

was due time to do a refresh and bring

you up today

in that video I stressed the importance

of the country of origin why well it's

natural that a country that has a rich

history going back centuries should be

building better pianos than a country

that just started building pianos but

we've really changed quite a bit today

it's really a global marketplace

consider the iPhone the iPhone from

Apple an American company built in China

with screens made in Korea

circuits coming from parts of Europe

rare earth materials coming from as far

from paces as Mongolia so this is the

way it is in the world today not just

with electronics but with pianos that's

right we have very few independent piano

makers you have for example Busan door

for the Austrian company owned by Yamaha

and Sanok owns a Bechstein and Siler

it's very confusing and then sylars some

of them are made in Indonesia in fact so

many companies have factories in

different countries Yamaha and Kauai

have factories in Indonesia you have

many companies that have factories in

different countries it becomes very very

confusing now add to this the fact that

you have what are called stencyl pianos

where the name in the front of the piano

has nothing to do with the piano

they are sourced by enterprising

business people who buy the rights to

the name of some familiar cattle

companies that are no longer producing

sometimes or even fictitious names what

makes it even more confusing is

sometimes one company will import pianos

from different factories for different

models in the line so you might not even

know who's building the

ya know from a certain company well

there are many many small companies

making ultra high-end pianos that are

very expensive and super high quality

from Italy want foxy Olli - right here

in the United States Mason & Hamlin and

many others in Europe these are

instruments for the discerning few but

the produce very few pianos as a matter

of fact last year there were only about

1400 pianos built in the United States

you might wonder is price indicative

equality well a new market to a great

extent it can be but because so much is

up to personal taste one person might

prefer a much less expensive piano - a

handmade piano if that style of sound

doesn't suit them naturally there are

some compromises that have to be made in

order to reach a price point on a piano

so the question is how long will a piano

last and it's that based upon the price

you pay in some part it is but more

importantly if a piano is a lower price

piano it might not pay to rebuild when

the time comes because at the end of the

day the price you pay to rebuild isn't

warranted on a piano of that cost there

are really though four giants in the

world today and those are two Japanese

companies Yamaha and Kauai and two huge

Korean companies Jung Chang and Samak

producing a wealth of pianos on many

different levels in factories in

different countries add to that the

stencil piano is coming out of China and

there's actually hundreds of companies

in China that don't export so it's

exploding world of pianos out there now

I could give you a top ten list but that

wouldn't be fair because there are

actually far more than ten piano

companies making top tier instruments

but the question is what's the right

piano for you some people have a realm

of experience that have a favorite piano

brand but all too often that's based

upon a very limited realm of experience

maybe a piano that you've grown up with

or a piano that a teacher had for

example I grew up my father Morton

Estrin a Baldwin artist helping him

choose pianos for his New York

titles and his recording sessions I

played countless great Baldwin's playing

concerts and a music conservatory I

played so many great Stein ways so

obviously I have a wealth of experience

with these brands of course over the

years I've gotten experience playing so

many pianos here's a little interesting

story for you

every year I get to go to the NAMM show

the National Association of music

merchants trade show right nearby in

Anaheim California and I get to play

countless pianos from around the world

and interestingly each year it's a

different piano that's my favorite one

year it might be a Mason & Hamlin

another year of booze and or for maybe a

sugar oka why because ultimately it

comes down to the specific piano it's

beyond just the model the company or the

era because each one is crafted add to

that personal preference and you can see

why choosing the best piano brands is a

very tough task and ultimately the

choice is up to you I'd love to hear

from you any of you who have favorite

piano brands and why and with very good

to make new videos on these subjects for

you thanks so much for joining me Robert

Esther here at Virtua sheet music calm

and living pianos calm