Few instruments are held in as high regard as a piano. The instrument is the definition of classic, and may double as a beautiful piece of furniture. Pianos come in a variety of sizes, and may be tall and rectangular as a stand-up, or curvy like the family of grand pianos. Piano prices for a traditional instrument can be as low as $2,000 or as high as $20,000, $40,000, or even $100,000. Digital pianos are also an option for purchase, as they can be found for as cheap as $500 and average in the area of $2,500. High end digital pianos cost over $5,000, and this will usually get you a digital piano that is visually modeled on the classic version.
Antique Piano Prices
Buying used is always an option worth exploring when purchasing an instrument of any type, but is imperative that someone who is experienced with the ins and outs of the instrument and its components inspect the potential purchase. This is especially the case when it comes to pianos, as the price of repairing, restoring, and/or rebuilding one can raise the piano cost to well over that of a brand new model. There is a market for some pianos built previous to WWII that may be worth the investment, but being an antique rarely makes a piano valuable, or even desirable. Piano cost is definitely affected by age as only a few years of usage can cause a significant drop in value.
New Piano Prices
The piano is a very popular and quite cherished instrument. Resultantly, there are a variety of piano types available through many manufacturers and retailers. Stand-up piano cost can range in the $2,000 – $4,000 area. These models are great for saving space, but sacrifice that big and wide piano sound that so many people are seeking. The sonic qualities that are most associated with pianos are found in the grand models. Baby grand pianos will run between $4,000 and $8,000 while their larger concert sibling, the full sized grand piano, commands prices averaging around $30,000 with the high end coming in at over $100,000. The pianos we’ve mentioned so far are all acoustic in nature, operating on physical principles to produce and amplify sound. There is also a wide range of digital pianos available today. Digital pianos do not have strings or the acoustic body structure of regular pianos, but some high-end models are shaped similarly to grand pianos for aesthetic appeal. The cost of pianos in the digital realm can range from under $500 to several thousands of dollars.
Digital Piano Prices
The cost of a piano of the digital type is associated with several features. The cheapest digital pianos are very similar to your typical electronic keyboard, but usually have keys that are weighted to feel similar to those of a real piano. Digital pianos use stored sound files and/or synthesizers to emulate the sound of strings being struck in a full sized piano (or other models). The realism, quality, and variety of these sounds (also referred to as the sound-bank or wave-table) will have a direct effect on the cost of digital pianos, as will the presence or absence of foot pedals. Overall, digital piano cost is mostly associated with the similarity of the electronic device to the sound and playability of a traditional piano.
While the title of top brands doesn’t always mean the best product, they are usually a good indication of what most people seek in their purchase. Yamaha brand pianos are known to be of good quality and value, with a wide variety of acoustic and digital pianos for reasonable prices. Roland is the most well known provider of digital pianos, with a selection ranging from affordable to indulgent. Wurlitzer pianos have lost much of the luster that made them famous during the mid 1900s.This may be due to the fact that Baldwin now makes Wurlitzer pianos, after the company bought the rights to the brand. This is not to say that all Baldwin pianos are undesirable, as many of their concert grands can be found in professional use. Unfortunately the company did have a downfall in quality in the late 20th century. Since then, Gibson has purchased the brand and its subsidiaries, and quality has risen though production is thin. Kawai pianos are middle to high level and this reflects in the piano cost.
Steinway is a long trusted and respected name in pianos with moderately expensive and very expensive models available. Among the premium piano brand names is Bosendorfer. The cost of a piano from this company reflects the high level of craftsmanship that goes into their instruments. At the other end of the spectrum are “store brand” pianos. The cost of a piano of this type may be very low, but the quality is rarely worth the discount. Store brands are mass-produced at low cost (meaning a lot of features are left out) and sold off to retailers who then put their own name on the piano.
Buying a Piano
Unless it is in excellent condition, buying a used piano should be avoided due to the high costs associated with its restoration. As with all used instrument transactions, a professional who is familiar with the particular type of piano should inspect it before you decide on your purchase. Brand new pianos can be purchased in a store, which is important if you want to get a feel for the instrument first. If you strongly feel that you don’t need to test the piano prior to purchase, it is also possible to order them from retailers’ websites, and those of the manufacturers themselves (sometimes the two are the same). Digital pianos have a highly decreased risk of repair needs due to their electronic nature. Accordingly, purchasing used products can reduce digital piano cost.
Where to Buy a Piano
Finding a quality, slightly used instrument can lower piano cost. Unfortunately, this achievement is rare. Buying a piano straight from the dealer will usually result in the best service, but retailers tend to offer better discounts. Digital pianos are the exception to the used instrument rule, as they are not subject to the effects of time in the same manner as classic pianos. The Internet is a great resource if you are looking to lower the cost of a piano in the digital realm.