Piano/Types of Pianos

From Wikibooks

Grand, Upright, and Electronic pianos are the most common types of pianos.


A Grand Piano.

The largest and the most expensive type of piano. Grand Pianos have soundboards that are horizontal. The Soundboard is inside a supportable opening platform that lifts on the left in a upwards direction. Dampers are on top of the strings, close to the hammers. The internal construction is braced with form-holders, usually made of wood, as well as the small equipped metal reinforcements. Essentially the casing is "bottomless" allowing one to see the soundboard support base, also of reinforced wood, which technically acts as the base. Keys consist of wood coated in ivory, or sometimes pure ivory, depending on the piano's manufacturers and classification. The grand piano has the standard 88 keys. Most of these pianos have sheet music platforms. A cover slides over, or folds down on the keys.

Baby Grand

The Baby Grand piano is a smaller version of the regular grand piano. It has an 88-key set up, just like the regular grand does, but has a smaller soundboard and is not as loud as the regular grand.


Upright piano

The most common piano, and is a popular addition to a living room or a parlor. The Upright piano is more common because it costs less money, is smaller, and offers a warm sound. The soundboard is vertical, strings and dampers stretching downward, hammers and dampers horizontal to the board. Since the hammers strike outward, they take slightly longer to return to resting position than the hammers of a grand (which strike vertically). The support base of the soundboard and the wooden reinforcements are visible on the backside. Although uprights often are depicted as inferior to the grand pianos, a five-foot upright can rival a typical grand in terms of tone quality and loudness. The keyboard is the same as the grand.


A keyboard.

Electric pianos are the most affordable, and are good for beginners. Some have hollow keys, while others try to replicate the feel and weight of acoustic keyboards. Electric pianos have a variety of sounds and settings, for example organ, guitar, string, choir, and percussion. The numerous sounds on some keyboards make it virtually a portable band. Other pianos have limited functions, but this is better for someone who is trying to replicate an acoustic and save money. True electric pianos (compared to the plain keyboards) have a professional appearance and good materials (most consist largely of plastic), as well as touch sensitive features and sometimes equipped frames. Most have connectors for pedals and computer interactive abilities. They never need to be tuned, and rapidly becoming more popular in modern bands. The user can also practice silently with headphones. Technological infancy and power supply are a few drawbacks to the electric piano.

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