by Larry Fine
Foreword by Keith Jarrett
How to buy and care for a piano — for 20 years the piano consumer's "bible." For more information, see the Table of Contents below and the Reviews and Excerpts at left.
8-1/2 x 11 in.
Fourth Edition published January, 2001
Important Note: The most recent edition of The Piano Book was published in 2001, and is no longer a reliable source of information about new-piano brands, models, and prices. For that information, see Acoustic & Digital Piano Buyer, the semiannual supplement to The Piano Book, in the main part of this web site.
Foreword by Keith Jarrett
Preface to the Fourth Edition
How to Use This Book
CHAPTER 1: How the Piano Works
[Pictorial Description of How Pianos Work]
How the Action Works in a Vertical Piano
How the Action Works in a Grand Piano
CHAPTER 2: Buying a Piano: An Orientation
Should I Buy a Grand or a Vertical Piano?
What Size Piano Should I Buy?
Should I Buy a New or a Used Piano?
Looking For a Piano, or Zen and the Art of Piano Buying
CHAPTER 3: Buying a New Piano
How Pianos Differ in Quality and Features
Case and Cabinet Construction, Styling, and Finish
Structural and Tuning Stability
Scale Design and Strings
Bridges and Soundboard
Listening to Tone
Pedals and Trapwork
Shopping For a New Piano
Choosing a Piano Dealer
Prices, Sales, and Merchandising
But Is It a Good Value?
Does It Hold Its Value?
How to Save Money
Price and Service
Dealing With Trade-Ins
Shopping For a New Piano on the Internet
Servicing After Delivery
Buying a School or Institutional Piano
CHAPTER 4: A Consumer Guide to New and Recently Made Pianos
The New Piano Survey
The Myth of Objectivity
The Survey and Its Limitations
How to Use This Guide
Need More Help?
Summary of Brands and Ratings in Alphabetical Order
Summary of Brands and Ratings in Approximate Descending Order of Quality
The Piano Industry Today: An Overview
Index to Trade Names
Brand-by-Brand Listings and Reviews
Electronic Player Piano Systems and Hybrid Acoustic/Digital Pianos
Commentary and Comparisons
CHAPTER 5: Buying a Used Piano
What's Out There
A Brief History of the Piano
How Long Does a Piano Last?
Brief Notes on a Few Old Piano Brands
Should I Buy a Used, "Gray Market" Yamaha or Kawai Piano?
Old Player and Reproducing Pianos
How to Find a Used Piano
Contacting Technicians and Rebuilding Shops
Repair, Reconditioning, and Rebuilding
Grand Piano Rebuilding Checklist
Visiting New Piano Dealers
Visiting Used Piano Dealers
Hunting Up a Piano
Shopping on the Internet
Obtaining a Piano From Friends and Relatives
Checking Out the Piano
Looks, Styling, and Finish
Opening Up the Piano For Inspection
Pitch and Tuning
Soundboard and Ribs
Closing the Piano
How Much Is It Worth?
Depreciation Schedule for Pianos
Prices of Used Pianos
After the Sale
Selling Your Piano
Addendum: Buying a Used Steinway or Mason & Hamlin
List of Steinway Models from 1853 to Present
Steinway Dates and Serial Numbers
CHAPTER 6: Piano Moving and Storage
Why Not to Move a Piano Yourself
How Pianos are Moved
Moving a Piano Around a Room
Hiring a Piano Mover for a Local Move
Interstate, Long-Distance, and Household Moves
The Effects of Moving and Storage
CHAPTER 7: A Beginner's Guide to Piano Care
What Is Tuning?
Why Do Pianos Go Out of Tune?
How Often and When Should I Have My Piano Tuned?
Humidity and Pianos
Where to Place the Piano
Humidifiers and Climate Control Systems
Other Kinds of Piano Service
Cleaning and Polishing
The Piano Technician
The Long-Range Outlook
The Stanwood Precision TouchDesign System
Magnetic Balanced Action
Reduced Size Keyboard for Small Hands
Mail-Order Sources For Piano Accessories
Piano & Keyboard Magazine
A piano is one of the largest consumer purchases most people will ever make. Yet when you shop for a piano you're up against a vast variety of brands, models, and styles, competing claims, and strange terminology. Finally, here is a book to guide you through the process with practical information on every aspect of buying and owning a new or used piano.
The Piano Book, now in its Fourth Edition, has been the standard consumer reference in the piano business in the United States and Canada since 1987, and is the only book of its kind. It contains:
New in the Fourth Edition:
The author, Larry Fine, is a Registered Piano Technician member of the Piano Technicians Guild, and has been involved in the field of piano technology for over thirty years.
Published by Brookside Press, Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts. Distributed to the book trade by Independent Publishers Group (IPG).
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