Piano Services

Frequently Asked Questions about Stanwood Touch Design

(Reprinted with the Kind Permission of Stanwood Piano)

1. Is installation of Precision TouchDesign really cost effective?

Upgrading your piano with Precision TouchDesign has proven to be the most cost effective aftermarket improvement in the piano industry. Our clients frequently comment that they got more than expected for the cost. If you paid a lot for your piano and it has hidden potential then you didn't get the most for your money. Bringing out hidden potential by upgrading with Precision TouchDesign improves the value of your money already spent.

The best example would be a client of ours who bought an old Bluthner at auction then paid a lot to have it restored. When it was finished he'd spent a total of $25,000.00 but the piano was so hard to play that it fell into disuse in the corner of their living room. Spending additional money to have the heavy action corrected with Precision TouchDesign gave he and his wife a piano that was a joy to play and returned the value of all the money they thought had been wasted.

The other extreme is to have the system installed on a piano that is already seemingly as good as it can be. The best example of this was the Swiss conservatory that hired David C. Stanwood to come and fix their new 9' Grotrian Steinweg which artists refused to perform on. Rather than travel all the way to Switzerland to work on just one piano Stanwood suggested that he work on a second piano which turned out to be the other one in their recital hall, a beautiful late model Hamburg Steinway B with no problems. The improvement was surprising, as related by the Director of the Conservatorium:

"Mr. David C. Stanwood has fitted both grand pianos in the concert hall of our school (Grotrian-Steinweg 277 c1996, Steinway B c1978) with his Precision TouchDesign. The result is excellent and it was quite evident that the touch was greatly improved across the whole keyboard, as well as the repetition which is now possible at a much faster rate. At the same time, the pianist has more control which allows for a much finer gradiation of dynamics. That the tone also gains by these measures in beauty and in finish was confirmed by all pianists who had previously played the instruments." (Full text at: http://www.stanwoodpiano.com/haug97.htm)

2. I'm not a good enough player to need this.

If you are an amateur pianist then you need this even more than the professional who spends years training to perform at the highest level - even on a mediocre instrument if asked. Just playing on a piano with Precision TouchDesign makes you a better pianist. A simple analogy would be running with boots then switching to sneakers designed for running. You become a better runner just by wearing the right shoe. Similarly having your piano upgraded with Precision TouchDesign makes you a better pianist just by playing on a better instrument!

3. I bought a high quality piano,... hasn't this work already been done?

At this time it is not cost effective for Piano manufactures to fine tune their instruments to the degree you get with Precision TouchDesign. It is what's called an "After Market Upgrade". In other industries it is common for a client to purchase a high quality item such as an Italian motor cycle for instance, then pay a specialist to have it tuned to higher tolerances thereby improving performance and value. In the automotive industry this type of upgrade is commonly referred to as "Blueprint and Balance". Published Journal papers on the subject of Precision TouchDesigns show precisely how and why pianos are improved with this new Scientific methodology.

For a list of Published Journal articles see: http://www.stanwoodpiano.com/

4. When I'm used to playing my piano with Precision TouchDesign, will I have difficulty playing on other pianos?

Pianists tell us time and time again that it is easier to play on other pianos once they've gotten used to their own piano with Precision TouchDesign and they appreciate how finely tuned their piano is compared to others! Pianos without Precision TouchDesign have more inconsistencies in tone and response,... Let's call them quirks. Pianists need to learn how to correct their technique in order to deal with the quirks. They find it difficult when they've gotten used to a piano with one set of quirks to switch to another piano with an entirely new set of quirks. It's easier to practice on a piano with minimal quirks, as with Precision TouchDesign, then switch to another piano with quirks. The ultimate is to practice on a piano with Precision TouchDesign then perform on another piano with Precision TouchDesign, as this professional pianist writes:

"I felt as if I were playing my own piano at home. I could transfer all of the technical work I had done in my practicing without the infinite adjustment pianists inevitably make when going to a different instrument. It was like having the luxury of traveling with ones own piano, and my performance was relaxed and confident as a result."

Callahan Piano