Today’s question is: should I invest in a new grand piano or an upright piano? Well, the answer is… complicated. We are not trying to be ambiguous, but there is simply not a simple, short answer to that question. Here at SoCal Pianos, we sell and rent many grand and upright pianos and we sell and rent them to a variety of people for a variety of reasons. In short, there are many factors that go into making the decision between a grand or upright piano. The first is understanding the basic difference between the two.
Grand pianos are the Cadillac version of the instrument. Their horizontal construction can stretch up to 10 feet wide (while most are up to 9 feet) and their long strings and incredible key action lend themselves to a richness and resonant bass that makes them the preferred choice of concert pianists and professionals.
Vertical construction and string arrangement make upright pianos much more compact and space-saving. Ranging from 43 inches high to 50 inches, higher-end uprights can produce a similar sound to grands and are also normally used for instruction.
PURCHASE PIANO FACTORS
Now that we know the basic difference between the two, let’s take a look at a few factors to consider before deciding which one to buy.
- Size. Grand pianos are substantially larger than uprights and require a bigger space with plenty of clearance around it. Uprights are space efficient and are normally placed against a wall, so make sure you have some wall space reserved for it. Another consideration is moving cost: larger grands cost more to move than an upright.
- Price. Generally speaking, grand pianos cost anywhere from three to six times more than uprights. If the instrument is intended for use by a beginner, you may want to consider whether you want to make such an investment. Speaking of user playing experience, that should have no bearing on a decision on an upright. An upright of good quality will satisfy any playing level.
- Sound. As stated before, grands have longer strings and superior key feel, which produces a tone and sound output preferred by many professionals. Uprights have shorter strings, which may pose some limitations on a pianist’s range. They are also placed against a wall, which can muffle the timbre and richness to some extent.
In conclusion, grands are usually the preferred options for professionals, but an upright certainly may be a better choice for other playing and usage situations. If you want to check out either model before purchase, SoCal offers that option with our rental plans at https://pianorentals.socalpianos.com/. And please check us out by appointment at our Ontario showroom or at our Palm Desert location.
ONTARIO & PALM DESERT SHOWROOMS BY APPOINTMENT ONLY
SoCal is continuously striving to ensure that our customers have the most enjoyable and safest experience when they visit our showrooms. To that end, during the current coronavirus pandemic, we have modified our showroom guidelines. For the safety of our customers as well as our dedicated staff, they are currently open by appointment only. This will allow us to maintain control over the amount of people in our locations while adhering to responsible social distancing guidelines. It will also allow us to serve our customers in more of a one-on-one approach. During this time, you can also visit our website for a virtual shopping tour. Please call our Ontario and Palm Desert locations for details or to make your appointment and stay safe friends!