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Piano Buying Guide: Exploring the Unique Voices of Different Piano Brands

What is more exciting than the opportunity to buy a piano? Having your own instrument is a lifelong dream for many and can provide hours of enjoyment and music-making. All pianos are different, and so we at PianoCraft in Gaithersburg, MD have put together a piano buying guide on the “voices” of different piano brands; that is, the sound and tone you can expect when playing.

Piano Buying Guide: Exploring the Unique Voices of Different Piano Brands

Choosing a piano is a delightful experience, and a big part of that delight is having an opportunity to try out a number of pianos and experience the unique “voice” character, or sound, of different piano brands. Here’s a brief guide to some of the most popular piano brands and what they’re known for:

Steinway & Sons

The undisputed king of pianos, Steinway & Sons pianos are known for their rich, powerful sound and incredibly responsive action. They are handcrafted instruments made with the finest materials and attention to detail. Owning a Steinway is a dream for many pianists, but be prepared to pay a hefty price tag.


An Italian piano brand known for its unique sound, both powerful and delicate, Fazioli pianos are prized by pianists who are looking for an instrument with a truly individual character. There is quite a lot of variation between Fazioli models, with some possessing a bright sparkling tone, and others a more mellow bell-like bloom to the sound of the notes.


This is a German piano brand known for its rich, complex sound that is often described as being warm and full-bodied. These pianos are prized by pianists who appreciate a nuanced and expressive playing experience.


A Japanese brand that is a major player in both acoustic and digital pianos, Yamaha offers excellent quality and value for money. Their acoustic pianos are particularly well-known for their bright, clear sound, while their digital pianos are known for their realistic sound and feel. Yamaha is a great choice for pianists of all levels.


Another major Japanese piano brand, Kawai offers a warm, lyrical sound that is in significant contrast to the brightness of Yamaha pianos. They are known for their excellent action and craftsmanship. Kawai is a great choice for pianists who are looking for a piano with a beautiful singing tone.


This is an Austrian piano brand known for its rich, full sound, and long sustain. Bösendorfer pianos are favored by many classical pianists for their ability to produce a wide range of tonal colors.


Another German piano brand, Grotrian pianos are known for their clear, powerful sound and responsive action. They are well-suited to a wide range of musical styles, from classical to jazz, and are known for their excellent craftsmanship and durability.


An American piano brand with a long history dating back to the 18th century, Baldwin pianos are known for their rich, full sound and traditional American piano design.


Another Austrian piano brand known to offer very good value for money, Brodmann pianos are known for their bright, clear sound and playable action. They are a good choice for beginner and intermediate pianists who are looking for a good quality piano without breaking the bank.

Remember, these are just brief descriptions, and the specific sound of any piano can vary depending on the model and individual instrument. These are just a few of the many great piano brands on the market, and it’s always best to try out a variety of pianos from different brands to see which one you prefer. You can do this when you visit our Gaithersburg, MD, showroom.

Piano Buying Guide: More Tips for Choosing a Piano

Acoustic vs. Digital

Acoustic pianos offer a traditional playing experience and a beautiful sound, but they can be expensive and require regular tuning and maintenance. Digital pianos used to be regarded as in no way comparable to a “real” piano, but the technology and build quality have come a long way in recent years.

Digital pianos are more affordable and easier to maintain, but they may not have the same depth of sound or playing experience as acoustic pianos. Nevertheless, they are often a good option if you have limited space or budget, for example, if you are a student in Gaithersburg, MD, or the surrounding area.

Upright vs. Grand

Upright pianos are more compact and affordable than grand pianos, but grand pianos generally have a richer sound and more responsive action. You will need to consider how much space you have to keep your piano in, and also your budget.

Number of Keys

It is usual for pianos to have 88 keys, but some digital pianos have fewer than that. A piano with 88 keys will allow you to play the entire range of piano music.


The action of a piano refers to the mechanism that transfers the movement of the keys to the hammers that strike the strings. A good piano action will be responsive and allow you to control the volume and tone of your playing. Some pianos have a heavier action than others, meaning that more pressure is required to push down the keys. Action preference can vary significantly between pianists; it’s important to try pianos out extensively to see what you like.


Pianos cost different amounts, depending on a number of factors, including the materials used, the build quality, and whether you are buying new or pre-owned. If you are a dedicated pianist but don’t currently have the budget for a new instrument of the level you need, there are options. By opting for a restored piano you can often get a very fine quality instrument at a significantly reduced price point.

Hopefully what this piano buying guide has shown you is that with a little research and planning, you can find the perfect piano to help you take your playing to the next level. Come down and see us at PianoCraft in Gaithersburg, MD, and try some out for yourself.

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