Posted on February 22nd, 2017


Go to www.pianos.ph to find out more!

Having been to several trade shows, you start to quickly realize that the world has become a very small place. The chart above contains the approximately 60 piano brands featured on Piano Price Point. Why present this? I believe it is always helpful to know who the significant players are at a glance. It doesn’t need to be overwhelming to find out what brands are connected. I was speaking with someone this last week who had most certainly heard of Steinway but had never heard the name Essex before. If you look on the chart, you’ll see that Steinway has 3 levels of price points having Essex as their most affordable. The goal is to simply educate and to inform. If you’re a teacher and your student mentions that they’re interested in a piano you’ve never heard of before and they’re looking for advice, this chart should hopefully shed some light on who’s who. If you’re a technician, these will all be familiar names and will again hopefully act as a quick reminder of piano connections.

Historically, the Pierce Piano Atlas names 12,000 names of pianos. Twelve Thousand!! On Piano Price Point you’ll find approximately 60 brands which represents an estimated 95% of piano brands sold in North America. What has happened over the last 150 years? I’ve often said that the piano was the entertainment center for families in the early 1900’s. Instead of gathering around television or radio and now even computer or mobile devices, the piano was one of the major focal points in every home. It seems that everyone had to have one. Subsequently, there was a great demand for piano builders. With limited transportation, pianos were sourced locally and in every medium sized city, there were quite often several piano makers. As the focus of the piano shifted to more media driven activities within the home, this myriad of makers decimated. Over the last half century, we’ve seen globalization and consolidation to the point where now we have both mega piano manufacturers and niche boutique makers. With the advent of computerization for accuracy working together with designers, we’re now experiencing the best era of pianos in tone and touch with remarkable consistency. Mass produced pianos even within the last decade have seen extensive changes while the boutique makers continue to offer artisan pianos with even more refined features. These are exciting times in new piano manufacturing.

Just a word about groupings: the size of the circles do not indicate size of the company but rather (pragmatically) one needs a bit more space to fit in 5 names rather than 2 and so the circles are adjusted accordingly. They are not listed by importance or quality but simply alphabetically by ownership. And finally, wherever possible, where there are multiple names in one circle they are ordered by price top to bottom. These piano connections, by the way, are publicly available. Simply look on each of their websites and you’ll be able to see their brands located there.