In part two of Piano vs Digital Piano, we will look at how your living arrangement can impact your decision to go with one or the other. Generally, this decision will be easier once you determine the allowable noise level, obstacles to moving the piano, and the length of time you will stay at the address where you will acquire the piano.
Allowable sound levels or noise complaints can make you wish you had bought something with headphones if the your neighbors don't appreciate the little Mozart living in your home. Many people who buy a piano in Arlington, Bethesda, and Washington DC find that the construction has solid concrete walls between the units leaving only the entrance door for sound to travel into the halls, so some extra weatherstripping or other soundproofing methods can nearly eliminate this problem all together. If you live in a townhouse, or don't have solid concrete walls and floors in your apartment, then you have a couple options....go with a digital piano that you can control the volume or plug headphones in, or buy an upright with a mute or practice pedal. These pedals stay pressed once you put them in position and lower a felt strip between the hammers and strings, so you can still get the practice you need with a fraction of the volume level.
Even if noise is not a consideration, you want to consider the obstacles of getting a piano into your home. If you have 4 flights of narrow steps leading to you apartment, then moving a 6 foot grand piano may be cost prohibitive. Even getting an upright piano up and down those steps with tight turns will raise your piano move cost up considerably. Here the clear winner would be a digital piano because you are able to disassemble most of them into two pieces which can be easily carried or placed on a hand truck. How about the floor load capacity? Some apartments don't allow waterbeds because of their weight and potential leakage, so a large grand piano may not be allowed either.
Finally, the length of time you will be in your home should be considered when making the choice. I once moved a grand piano three times in one year between homes where I lived. I did not want to sell it and take a loss, but at $500 per move, the right thing in retrospect would have been to sell it, buy a digital piano, and move it myself each time along with the small amounts of furniture that I owned. Even better, I could have gone with a piano or digital piano rental during that course of time saving a lot of money and headache. If there is any doubt as to how long you will be at your home, then you may want to play it safe and go with a rental or new or used digital piano purchase.
Hopefully this helps you with your decision or at least confirms what you already know but just need to read. If you have any questions about this feel free to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Should you buy a Piano or Digital Piano? I will give you a high level overview of what to consider when making this decision. Usually people make this decision based on their budget, living arrangements, commitment/level of proficiency or some combination of all of these factors. This will be a three part blog focusing on each of these factors. This post will focus on the budget aspect.
Generally speaking, a digital piano is a less expensive option than an acoustic upright or grand piano, though you will often see free upright pianos being given away on craigslist. I would stay away from those unless you know what you are doing. They can easily be a bigger project than you might think when you consider moving expenses, tuning (can it even hold a pitch), brand, quality, etc. There are many digital pianos, however, that are more expensive than an acoustic piano, but for the purposes of this blog, I will use basic uprights and basic fully weighted 88-key digitals as the benchmarks.
Whichever you end up buying, I would suggest that you stick to a well known brand so that if you do need to sell in the future, your piano will experience less depreciation. If acoustic, Yamaha and Kawai hold their value the best. Yes you will spend more, but 30 years from now, people will still want that piano. Lesser known brands will be give-a-ways at that age. Always buy a black piano. Brown ones do not hold their value like black ones do. The majority of people shopping are looking for a black piano because it goes with everything.
If you are buying a digital piano, again, I would stick with the best brands. Yamaha Clavinova or YDP series, Roland, Kawai, and believe it or not, Casio has come up with a fantastic digital piano line with the Privia. There are so many brands like Williams, Suzuki and others that will fall apart quickly. Color is less important with digital pianos, but typically dark brown or black are the most desired.
If buying a used digital piano for sale, test the keys and make sure they all have an even consistent sound and feel. Listen for “press and release” noise. This should be very quiet so it is not distracting to the player. Make sure the pedals work. Turn it off and on again to make sure the electronics are working properly. Age is important, but anything post 1998 should be adequate because by then, almost all electronic pianos made the change from analog sounds to sampled grand piano sounds, and there has been somewhat of a plateau since then. Renting a digital piano for a beginner is not a bad idea to save money if the player loses interest, or if they have a high level of interest, you may want to purchase an acoustic piano or more advanced digital piano. Piano rental allows you to defer that decision to a later date.
If buying a used acoustic piano, check the age by serial number if you can find a source. Yamaha and Kawai post their serial numbers online so you can tell the age. Don’t be afraid of age if the piano is well maintained or rebuilt, particularly if it is a Yamaha or Kawai. Watch for “grey market” pianos. While there is nothing specifically wrong with these pianos, they were not built for the American market, so may have less value when you go to sell. Do not take on a free piano project unless you know what you are doing.
I am happy to answer specific questions about models and prices. Just contact us at email@example.com
Singing Strings rents and leases pianos and digital pianos to Northern Virginia, Washington DC, and Maryland, including Baltimore.
In a down economy, you may be looking for ways to shave costs, especially large ticket purchases like a piano or digital piano. Renting a piano or digital piano can be a good idea in some cases, while it is a much better plan to purchase in others. We will take a look at some circumstances for both.
Renting makes the most sense if you have a child who you are not sure how interested that they will be in playing the piano after six months of lessons. If they stay interested, then it is clearly a better move to purchase at that point. We usually recommend going with a good upright or baby grand if your child shows sustained interest.
Many people do not know that they can rent a digital piano, but this is a very good option for college students, people who are in the country temporarily, or those who are hesitant to make a large scale purchase until they know they won't be moving for a while.
Renting also buys you time to make an informed purchase while your child's skills continue to bloom. We recommend Yamaha, Kawai, or Samick as a good brand to take you or your child to the next level.
Keywords Piano Rental, Digital Piano Rental, Keyboard Rental
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