In 1700, Italian instrument designer Bartolomeo Cristofori designed the piano. Ever since the first piano was designed and accepted, several other designs have been made till present day. You can now find pianos being used in private homes, rehearsal studios, and concert halls, but the main focus of this post is to talk to you about the various types of piano instrument that we have today.
Before proceeding into that, let us talk more about the piano instrument.
What Is A Piano?
You must have seen what a piano looks like either face to face or in pictures, and we define the piano as a chordophone. This means the piano is a type of string instrument designed to make sounds when a note is played, and sounds are produced when a string vibrates. Playing any of the keys on a piano causes the felted hammer to hit a string, and this strike causes the string to vibrate. The vibration in turn produces a sound.
This is how the modern day piano is designed to operate, and we can also classify the piano as a percussion instrument based on its anatomy. The piano shares similar characteristics with keyboard instruments, and we are talking about similarities like the organ, clavichord, and harpsichord. The dynamic range and tonal range of the piano is unique to the point where it sets it apart from all other keyboard instruments.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise to you that so many people prefer playing the piano during live and classic concerts, and this is based on all the quality and features that a piano comes with. The piano is said to be an ingenious creation, and the way it has impacted music is one fact that we cannot turn our eyes away from. In terms of western music, inventing the piano proved to be a game changer as it made music more fun, pleasant and interesting.
If you want to sound a bit technical, you can also classify the piano as an electronic instrument, but do not forget that the piano can also be classified under the string and percussion instruments. The piano is designed to have several moving parts, and the felt hammers that are hooked to the hammer shank are the most significant of a piano’s moving part. The striking action of these hammers remains a piano’s most predominant action.
When a pianist presses a piano key down, it causes the hammer to be engage and the hammer strikes the strings. This is how sounds are produced on a piano, but it will take a lot of practice for you to be very good at playing the piano. We do not mean learning how to play the piano is very difficult, but learning how to play the piano isn’t as easy as it sounds or seems.
One of the best ways you can learn to play the piano is by hiring a teacher to teach you, and watching some online videos can also come in handy sometimes.
Types Of Piano Instruments
Even though there are so many pianos with different styles on the market, there are categorically three different types of piano. Come with us as we discuss these three types of piano.
Upright Or Vertical Piano
The position of the piano sound board and strings explains best why this type if piano is named upright or vertical. Standing perpendicular to the ground earned them the name vertical or upright piano, and this means that the piano is designed to strike the hammer in an upright position. The mechanism that controls a hammer hitting a string and pressing a key differs from that of the grand piano, and this is why playing an upright piano differs from others.
Smaller sound boards and short strings are attributes of the upright piano compared to the grand piano, and this is one of the reason why manufacturers decided to design the grand piano. Building a nine foot long piano is very different from building a nine foot long piano.
The next piano type we want to move on to is the grand piano, and this is the most expensive and largest of all the piano types. The sound boards of the grand piano is designed to be horizontal, and this offers a large sound board area with more strings to play with. A grand piano’s action is very different from that of the upright piano, and this is because it comes with strings designed to sit in a horizontal position. Grand pianos are known to be played faster.
You might be wondering what is responsible for this, and this is because the hammers are always being reset by gravity. There is more control when playing the grand piano compared to the upright piano because of the role gravity has to play, and this is why there are many people in support of the grand piano because it isn’t complicated to play.
Having a visible key size is what you will find on every piano type today, but that of the grand piano is designed to spread deeper into the piano compared to the upright or vertical piano. This paves the way for a longer weaving, and this also makes it easy for the pianist to play with more control over tone and dynamics.
The last piano type we want to have a look at is the digital piano, and what gained our interest in this piano is the fact that it sounds like the grand and upright piano. Sounds cool right? However, how they produce their sound differs from these other guitars, and sounds are produced by activating sensors through pressing a key. You will find multiple samples and recordings on digital pianos, and each of these notes can be played back at different volumes.
Its playback volume depends on how hard or soft you play, and you will find different voices and sounds on digital pianos. They are also designed to play along sequences and they also have various recording features. There are some digital pianos designed to run on batteries, while others are designed to be very portable. Good digital pianos are known to feel and sound like acoustic guitars, while hybrid digital pianos have acoustic components in them.
This tells you there is some sort of blurry lines between digital and acoustic pianos.
Conclusion – Types Of Piano Instruments
We have gotten to the end of this post on the Types Of Piano Instrument, and we have been able to explain to you the types of pianos that you will find on the market. Surely you will be able to make a choice on what type of piano you want with every information we have provided, and you can tell us about your thoughts, ideas, and opinions concerning this post in its comment section.
My name is Johnson Lewis and I am a music coach, producer and Blogger. I enjoy writing about music, instruments, music equipments and I love helping people become better singers.