The C. Bechstein B212 is a blend of the traditional and the modern. While this 7′ piano derives much of its tonal pallette from very traditional hammer making techniques, hand-selected woods for the soundboard and rim, and hand-assembled actions, it also takes advantage of laser-precision soundboard tapering and resonance modelling, precision bridge notching, and one of the most resonant frame structures in the industry. Customers seeking the classic sound of a 7′, with a need for the absolute best from the piano industry, the B-212 will not disappoint.
The C. Bechstein Concert Series grand pianos represent the pinnacle of piano building. Not a single design or material decision has been made with cost in mind. Virtually every inch of the piano is hand-made to the Nth degree. And while other instruments may feature one or two similarities, not a single production competitor comes even close to consistently selecting the very best at every turn.
The B212 is the critical 7-foot entry in the C. Bechstein Masterpiece line. Besides being one of the most acclaimed pianos in the world, it’s also one of the most unique in terms of the engineering behind it, and one of the rarest. It takes 15 months to build a B212, and close to 700 hours of labour. Bechstein is a piano manufacturer that has consistently improved upon the design of their grand and upright pianos.
We’re thrilled to have a B212 on display at our Oakville showroom, and it consistently gets rave reviews from folks who visit our showroom to try pianos. It’s often singled out as not only the nicest piano in our showroom but the nicest piano many people have ever played. Give us a call and pay us a visit to experience this masterpiece for yourself!
The piano is equipped with C. Bechstein’s Gold Action, which is their top design combined with hundreds of hours of refinement. In fact, the piano overall takes 15 months of construction and over 500 hours of work, and a good portion of those hours are spent on the action and related refinements.
C. Bechstein Concert Grand Piano Actions (Gold Action) is near perfect out of the box. Perfectly balanced, beautifully fluid, and capable of the most subtle nuance without being lightly weighted or timid when pushed.
Very few pianos have a ‘sound’ attached to them, and the “C. Bechstein Sound” is long associated with refined clarity and luscious colour. The term clarity tends to conflate the concepts of purity and structure of tone, and separation of tone as a single quality, but in the case of the C. Bechstein B212, it’s appropriate. The purity of the tone, meaning that all harmonics and partials within a note are even, without phase, and consistent from note to note, is remarkable – and only achieved through the precision of construction and design. This aspect has virtually nothing to do with wood quality or material selection – it’s all design and craft.
With a minimum of at least 7 audible harmonics on any given note and treble notes comprised of three strings simultaneously resonating, that’s 21 distinct ‘pitches’ that must act as a single tonal unit. The hammer must strike perfectly, the strings must be exactly the same length and tension, and the strings themselves must be completely blemish-free. In addition, the duplex scale will add further complexity which must perfectly complement and enhance the tone coming off the primary resonating length. It’s not easy.
Separation of tone is a function of the bridge and soundboard, and no different than comparing a high-quality speaker where you hear more detail even at higher volumes than a cheap speaker where sound tends to blend and distort as it becomes more complex or louder. And in this category, the C. Bechstein B212 is built around the world’s ultimate soundboard: a computer-milled tapered soundboard made of solid Val Di’ Fiemme spruce. Or in layman’s terms, it’s the same wood as a Stradivarius Violin (more on that below.)
Add to that a custom dark walnut hammer perfectly balanced to elicit a bloom on the attack, and a ‘spring-loaded’ wood structure built as a natural amplifier. The pin block’s nine layers of high-quality wood ensure extra-precise regulations of the tuning pins and long-lasting tuning
C. Bechstein’s commitment to ensuring as much control over the entire manufacturing process is like few others in the industry, and really shines through when it comes to the hammers. Bechstein is the only European manufacturer who produces their own hammerheads. Not only do they produce their own hammerheads, but every instrument throughout their lineup features a set of hammers custom-tailored to that specific instrument. To do this, Bechstein built their own hammerhead production facility from the ground up located in Germany, which is of course highly unusual in globalized world culture.
The B 212 features hammers of a dark walnut core, covered with New Zealand wool utilizing a top-secret, traditional proprietary method. The hammers are individually voiced by hand by expert technicians before the piano leaves the factory. Greater dynamic range and spectrum of tonal colors.
At the center of the B 212 and the main reason for its specific tone is it’s Italian Red Spruce soundboard, from the famed Val Di’ Fiemme in Italy, grown slowly at elevations of 1,000 meters and higher. This same source of spruce that Stradivarius used for his violins, and C. Bechstein are one of only 2 manufacturers who utilize this exclusive wood for their grand piano soundboards, the other being Fazioli.
The soundboard design itself is also very interesting and one of the main causes of the “bloom” like nature of the tone; each soundboard is tapered and fashioned as a membrane with its projection surface adjusted to the pianos specific acoustic assembly, like in violin-making. This membrane design makes the soundboard responsive to the slightest of vibrations without energy loss, allowing for maximum resonance.
C. Bechstein’s core design philosophy revolves around the idea of activating the entire structure, including the frame and cabinet and minimizing energy loss as much as possible. This is done through triple joinery, long-aged woods which are highly stable and precision-fitted, and using a mix of hardwoods to ensure that no biasing occurs.
The inner rim is made of massive horizontal mahogany and red beech layers. The combination of the soundboard, ribs, and the bridge is inserted and glued into the inner rim, which is then adapted so that it supports the board’s crown. This complex procedure contributes to the optimization of the soundboard’s resonance.
The outer rim consists of vertical and horizontal beech layers that are glued together and shaped to achieve optimum solidity. The material is carefully selected to ensure that the case remains highly stable and perfectly frames the soundboard.
The pinblock needs to be mentioned here as well. The pinblock found in the B 212 is one the most advanced in the world, utilizing a combination of thick and thin solid plains of beech, mahogany, and maple woods, all at alternating angles. It creates incredibly even tension on the pin which remains consistent in different climates, and with superb durability.
|Length||7’ (212 cm)|
|Width||5'1" (156 cm)|
|Height||3'4" (102 cm)|
|Weight||880 lbs. (399 kg)|
|Warranty||5 Year Parts & Labour Manufacturer’s Warranty|