When buying a piano, buyers may find out that they either don’t have space or the budget to have a grand piano in their house.
Enter the baby grand piano. Compared to their concert grand counterparts, they are smaller and usually more affordable. Plus, they have excellent sound quality, making them a great option for musicians of any level of expertise.
These instruments usually measure from 4’5″ to 5’5″ in length. The baby grand is the most popular type of piano when it comes to domestic use.
Today, we will help you find out how much does a baby grand piano cost, as well as help you learn all the aspects you should take into account when buying this kind of instrument.
Tip: if you want to learn to play the piano, make sure to check our How to Play Piano article, where we cover everything you will need to get started with the instrument.
How much does a baby grand piano cost?
The GB1K in a polished ebony finish, which costs around $15.000, is the entry-level piano from the renowned manufacturer Yamaha. It is worth mentioning that the instrument’s finish significantly influences the pricing. The identical model costs $19.179, about $5,000 more if you choose the French provincial finish. The Yamaha GC1 SH2 is a step forward. The polished ebony finish for the 5’3″ baby grand starts at $33.000.
The Differences Between Baby Grand and Grand Pianos
The first question most people ask is about the differences between a baby grand and a standard grand piano.
The main one is, of course, the size and length. Let’s take a look at some of the most popular grand piano sizes available:
- Concert Grand Piano – 7’4″ to 9’5″
- Grand Piano – 6’5″ to 7’4″
- Medium Grand Piano – 5’5″ to 6’5″
- Baby Grand Piano – 4’5″ to 5’5″
As you can see, baby grand pianos are the smallest professional pianos available. This type has a huge difference in size from its larger counterparts. This however doesn’t affect the sound quality of the baby grand.
Another major difference is the price. A brand new instrument of that kind may cost half as much as a traditional grand piano.
Which Type of Piano Sounds Better?
There is no real answer to this question because the differences between different piano types are not exactly tied to sound quality, but more to different appliances and in what situation it will be played.
A concert grand, for instance, is made to be played in a big concert hall, with nearly perfect acoustic properties. If you were to put this kind of piano on a regular house it wouldn’t sound so good.
Baby grand pianos are better for domestic use because they are much smaller and have a sound volume and physical size/length that will fit most places such as living rooms.
Related: if you want to learn to play jazz piano, then we have an awesome guide on How to Play Jazz Piano.
Is It Worth Buying a Baby Grand Piano?
A baby grand is still a large investment, but if you like the looks of it and you want an amazing sound quality without breaking the bank as much as you would with a standard grand, this type of instrument is your best bet.
Sure, there are more affordable options on the market, such as an upright piano, that could fit your budget and your home space better, but wouldn’t offer a sound as open and bright as with a baby grand. It is a matter of considering your priorities.
Average Baby Grand Piano Prices
We researched the average price for brand new pianos and used baby grands. Here is what we found.
Brand New Baby Grand Prices
The entry level piano from the famous brand Yamaha is the GB1K in a polished ebony finish, at around $15.000. It is worth noting that the finish of the instrument will impact a lot on the price. The same model costs $19.179, almost five thousand dollars more if you opt for the french provincial finish.
One step above is the Yamaha GC1 SH2. The 5’3″ baby grand starts at $33.000 for the polished ebony finish. This model also has the silent piano feature of the manufacturer: it will allow you to play the GC1 as a regular or digital piano, as well as plug headphones into it and record it.
On the other hand, the model S from the Steinway & Sons manufacturer starts at around $65.000. This may exceed most people’s budget by a lot, so we’re keeping the average price for a brand new baby grand at around $25.000.
Used Baby Grand Prices
When opting for a used piece, you can find instruments in mint condition from $4000 all the way to $20000.
While looking for used baby grands in the United States on the website Piano Mart, we have found some great deals on entry level Yamaha pianos in great condition, no older than 10 years, averaging $7000.
However, when buying a used piano, you should check the instrument carefully and preferably in person. Keep reading to find out more about the precautions you should take in that situation.
What Should I Consider When Buying a Baby Grand Piano?
No matter if you choose a new or used piano, there are a few things you should take into account when buying a baby grand. Here is a list of them.
The best size/length of baby grand to buy will depend on your budget and how much room you have at home. Larger pianos tend to have a louder and brighter sound. A smaller option may suit you best if you don’t want your neighbors to complain about your playing or don’t have the money to spend on acoustic isolation.
As we’ve seen before, the finish and materials of baby grand pianos can greatly impact its cost. On our research, we found out the Yamaha GB1K in french provincial finish costs almost five thousand dollars more than its polished ebony counterpart.
On used pianos, you should also check if there aren’t any cracks, chipping, or damage to the finish as these kinds of things may cost a lot to fix later on.
Similar to the finish, the wood of the instrument will have a considerable impact on its sound and price. Pianos can be manufactured using many types of wood materials for the outer structure, such as ebony and spruce.
Interior components are usually manufactured using spruce and maple. As the wood is very sensitive to changes in weather and humidity, buyers should check its integrity when shopping for used pianos.
Quality of the Piano Components
A piano is made out of thousands of components. Pieces such as the soundboard, the strings, and the action will impact greatly on the instrument sound and playability.
The soundboard of the piano will help the sound of the strings resonate through the instrument’s body. Especially if you’re buying used, it is worth checking if it has any cracks or signs of humidity on it.
Lastly, the strings and the action must be checked. Used pianos may come with one or more worn strings, so that will be an additional cost to change them. The action can easily be felt by playing the instrument a little bit. Observe if it is not too high or too low. If that’s the case, additional service may be needed to adjust them.
Age of the Piano
Make sure to know this information if you’re buying a used piano. Older instruments tend to need more service and don’t hold the tuning as well as their newer counterparts. However, this will largely depend on the maintenance habits of the previous owner. A properly maintained baby grand will last a long time.
How Much Does it Cost to Maintain a Baby Grand Piano?
Baby grand pianos will need regular maintenance to ensure the proper functioning and to conserve the state of the instrument. Maintenance should not, by any means, be ignored as it would cost much more to repair a neglected or old piano later on.
Some of the basic costs for maintaining baby grand pianos are:
According to Thumbtack, price ranges for tuning a piano in the United States range from $120 to $140. A baby grand should be tuned at least once a year, and a new piano should receive tuning four times in its first year.
It is important to tune your piano regularly and follow the recommendations of the manufacturer. When properly tuned, the strings will create the right tension needed for the instrument’s structure to stay in good condition.
There are some rules of thumb to keep pianos in pristine condition and maintain their value. The first is to keep your instrument in a dry place away from windows. Environmental changes in temperature, pressure and humidity can all have a detrimental effect on pianos. This will largely depend on where you live and how extreme the weather is.
There is also the cleaning factor. It is not advised to clean a piano for yourself if you don’t have the right knowledge. You’re much better off hiring a professional in that case. Cleaning price may vary a lot because they are usually considered an additional service, but it is advised to have pianos cleaned at least once a year.
Piano Strings Costs
If a baby grand is maintained under ideal conditions and receives tuning frequently, it will rarely need a set of new strings. But in case one break or all of them need to be replaced, the average price for one string is $2, and a full set will cost about $240.
Related: Please check our How Much Does It Cost to Tune a Piano? article if you want to learn more about the costs of tuning and maintaining a piano.
What is a Silent Baby Grand Piano?
A long time ago Yamaha invented the silent piano. A silent piano is an instrument you can play both as a digital and as an acoustic piano, apart from being able to record audio in various formats such as MIDI and WAV, as well as being used to control virtual instruments.
You can also use a silent piano with headphones. This type of baby grand is great for those who don’t want to have problems with their neighbors or don’t feel like they have a proper environment to play.
The way a silent piano works is that it has an optical sensor in its keys to detect their movement, so while the function is turned on, you can still play with the feel of a real piano but with a much quieter sound.
The price for a silent baby grand piano can go up quite a bit compared to standard ones. Yamaha’s C1XSH2 PE in polished ebony starts at $42.000, almost twenty thousand dollars more than the brand’s entry level GB1K in the same finish.
How Does a Baby Grand Works?
When shopping for baby grand pianos, it is great to know how this type of instrument works so you can make sure the instrument you’re buying has high-quality components and construction.
On the most part, a baby grand works just like their larger, concert grand counterparts. These are complex instruments made up of thousands of components and pieces designed to work together flawlessly.
A baby grand has its strings vertically placed through an iron plate, holding onto the tuning pins. When you press the keys, the hammer hits the corresponding string and it vibrates through the soundboard.
The soundboard is encountered in the middle of the piano, between the down most part of the structure and the iron plate. It is one of the most important places to check for cracks or any damage (especially if buying used), because of its great impact on the timbre of the instrument.
Another essential part is the bridge. The bridge will ensure a smooth transfer of frequencies between the soundboard and the iron plate. It is usually a pair of wood pieces, one small and one larger, that sit between the two components.
Frequently Asked Questions About Baby Grand Pianos
What is the Cheapest Baby Grand Piano?
If buying new, one of the cheapest professional baby grand pianos in the market is the Yamaha GB1K in a polished ebony finish, starting at about $15.000. Used baby grands in mint condition can be found for a price as low as $4000.
How Much Does a Steinway Baby Grand Piano Cost?
Steinway & Sons is among the most expensive brands. The model S, the entry level piano of the manufacturer, starts at around $65.000 brand new.
What is the Best Brand of Baby Grand Piano?
Steinway & Sons is among the most expensive brands. The model S, the entry level piano of the manufacturer, starts at around $65.000 brand new.
Additional Tips for Choosing a Baby Grand Pianos
Know Baby Grand Piano Sizes
The size and length of a baby grand piano will impact both its price and sound. A larger piano will sound louder but will also be more expensive and take more room in your home. As stated before, baby grands range from 4’5″ to 5’5″ in size.
Check New vs. Used Baby Grands
With the average price of a new baby grand piano being around $25.000, it is worth checking for used options. As we early discussed, used pianos start at around $4000 and may suit your budget better.
Explore the Brands
There are a lot of piano brands on the market today. Always check if the piano you’re buying is from a quality manufacturer, such as Yamaha and Steinway & Sons.
Consider Different Finishes
As discussed before, the finish of baby grand pianos will greatly impact its price. Not only that, but some finishes are more prone to be easily damaged, so it is worth considering the environment of your house before deciding which finish to choose.
In this article, we answered the question “how much does a baby grand piano cost?”, as well as research all the costs related to maintenance and the different types of pianos available in the market.
As we could see, the average price for a baby grand in new condition is at about $25.000. One of the most affordable, quality models we could find in this category is the Yamaha GB1K, starting at $15.000.
If on a budget, mint condition, fairly recent manufactured baby grands can be found with a price ranging from $4000 to $20.000, according to what we found on the website Piano Mart.
If you have noise complaints from your neighbors, you can alternatively go for a silent piano. These pianos can function both as digital and acoustic, as well as record audio and connect to headphones and computers.
When buying a baby grand, it is also important to go for quality brands like Yamaha and Steinway & Sons, as well as check the structure of the instrument for any damage, especially with used pianos.
Aspects such as wood type, finish, action, and components such as the soundboard and strings will all impact the quality and price of the instrument.
Buyers should also take into account the costs of maintenance. Keep in mind your piano should be tuned at least yearly.
We hope we helped you with this article. Do you have any questions or tips on a baby grand piano cost, maintenance, and types? Please let us know in the comments section below!
Ian Sniesko is an experienced music producer and musician who loves to share his knowledge about the best audio equipment for making and enjoying great music. For the past 6 years, Ian has written extensively about the audio equipment industry and has contributed to many of the top music magazines.