Piano Types and Piano Sizes: What You Should Know

Piano Types and Piano Sizes: What You Should Know

If you are ready to purchase a piano, your first decision will be which type: a grand or an upright piano. Once you make that decision, there are still a variety of choices in each category, size and type, that will impact your overall quality of sound.

Grand Piano

The grand piano is considered the top of the line for many. People prefer it because of its looks. A grand piano looks better in a room and commands more attention. It also improves the pianists view, allowing him to look around at his audience while he plays. Because an upright is usually against the wall, causing the player to have his back to the audience with no particular view in front of him, status and enjoyment are reduced.Piano Types and Piano Sizes: What You Should Know

The standard grand piano is about 5 feet wide, with the length varying from around 4 ½ feet to 9 ½ feet. The soundboard and the strings of a grand piano are positioned horizontally inside the case. The size of the soundboard and the length of the strings influence the tonal sound of the piano. Larger soundboards and larger strings will produce the greatest volume of tone. If you are considering the smallest of grand pianos, you might compare it to a higher end upright for comparison.

Upright Piano

The standard width of an upright piano is about 5 feet, with the depth typically between 2 and 2 ½ feet. The height of an upright is where quality comes into play, and its what impacts the overall sound produced. The height of a piano is measured from the floor to the top of the piano, and four types of vertical pianos can be found: spinet is less than 36 inches tall, console is 40 to 44 inches tall, studio is 45 to 50 inches, and the upright is anything over 50 inches.

Spinet Piano

The smallest of the vertical pianos, the spinet is on the lowest end of size, tone, and price. It was produced when demand for pianos was high, yet poor economic times meant people needed a less expensive option. Because of the size, the standard piano action won’t fit; a drop action is used instead. A two step process is used to create sound, rather than the standard hammer action used in most pianos.

Console Piano

A console is one of the most popular vertical piano choices. The action sits directly on top of the keys; the hammers sit in an upright position. When the hammer strikes the string, the tone is created until the key is released, pulling the hammer back into original position.

Studio Piano

The extra height of a studio piano gives the sound richness and a tonal quality comparable to may grand pianos. Because the casing has more room, the location and the feel of the action is slightly different, allowing better functionality.

Upright Piano

The tallest of the verticals is the upright. These pianos were made in America in the 1920s to the 1940s, and are often referred to as Grandma’s piano. If properly preserved and restored, they can be one of the most pleasing and beautiful instruments ever made.

Which is the right choice for you? Give us a call today. We can answer all of your questions and help you make the right choice for your situation.