The Wendl & Lung brand is widely distributed in Europe and quite popular there. Distribution in the U.S. is in its early stages.
Warranty: The 10-year parts and labor warranty is transferable once during the first two years of ownership for verticals, or the first three years for grands. The transferability is more liberal if the owner upgrades to a Sauter piano (see warranty terms). Although Sauter and Wendl & Lung are separate companies, this cooperation is possible because the U.S. distributor for both brands is the same.
WURLITZER — See Baldwin.
Pianos made by: Beijing Hsinghai Piano Group, Ltd., Beijing, China
Wyman Piano Company was created by experienced former Baldwin executives with more than 60 years of combined piano industry experience. Although a relatively new company, Wyman distribution has grown to include the U.K., Germany, and Japan, as well as the U.S.
The regular Wyman line consists of six vertical piano sizes and four grand models in a variety of cabinet styles and finishes. All are based on German scale designs and are manufactured in China by the Beijing Hsinghai Piano Group (see Beijing Hsinghai) at that company's new 1.2-million-square-foot factory. A new, limited-production premium line of Wyman Pianoforte models, made in a small production facility in the Beijing area, features deluxe cabinets and some upgraded technical features.
Wyman offers the model CD2 player-piano system by Pianoforce, a new entrant in the field of player-piano systems (see Pianoforce in the article on electronic player-piano systems). The optional CD system features a unique stamped rail designed specifically for these pianos that, according to the company, allows a much lower profile than other player systems that use universal rails to fit any piano. These are installed at the Beijing factory.
Wyman says that its executives make frequent trips to the factory in Beijing to monitor manufacturing and inspect finished instruments.
Warranty: 10 years, parts and labor, transferable to future owners within the warranty period. Lifetime warranty on the soundboard.
XINGHAI — See Beijing Xinghai.
Pianos made by: Yamaha Corporation, Hamamatsu, Japan and other locations (see text)
Torakusu Yamaha, a watchmaker, developed Japan's first reed organ, and founded Yamaha Reed Organ Manufacturing in 1887. In 1899 Yamaha visited the U.S. to learn to build pianos. Within a couple of years he began making grand and vertical pianos under the name Nippon Gakki, Ltd. Beginning in the 1930s, Yamaha expanded its operations, first into other musical instruments, then into other products and services, such as sporting goods and furniture, and finally internationally.
Export of pianos to the U.S. began in earnest about 1960. In 1973 Yamaha acquired the Everett Piano Co., in South Haven, Michigan, and made both Yamaha and Everett pianos there until 1986. In that year, the company moved its piano manufacturing to a plant in Thomaston, Georgia, where it made Yamaha consoles, studios, and some grands until 2007, when a depressed piano market and foreign competition forced it to close its doors. Since then, the company has introduced new models, made in other Yamaha factories, to replace those formerly made in Thomaston.
Yamaha is probably the most international of the piano manufacturers. In addition to its factories in Japan, Yamaha has plants and partnerships with other companies in Germany (with Schimmel), Mexico, China, and Indonesia. Yamaha pianos sold in the U.S. are made in Japan, China, and Indonesia. In 2009, Yamaha closed its factories in England (with Kemble) and Taiwan. Models formerly made in those factories will in the future be produced in Yamaha's other Asian plants.
Yamaha's console line consists of 44" models M460 and M560 in furniture style (freestanding legs) with increasing levels of cabinet sophistication and price. All are internally the same and have a compressed action typical of a console, so the action will not be quite as responsive as with larger models.