One of Schimmel’s two fully handcrafted lines made in Braunschweig Germany, the Schimmel Classic series is just as the name suggests – a line of upright and grand pianos built in traditional European fashion, but with a healthy dose of modern design and technology mixed in for good measure. The Konzert line is positioned just above the Classic series, while the Wilhelm Schimmel’s are produced in East Europe, and the Fridolin’s in China (By Pearl River).
The C121 represents the Classic line’s offering at the highly competitive 48” upright piano size. 48” is the most popular upright piano size worldwide, and this category is typically dominated by Japanese instruments such as the Yamaha U1 or Kawai K-300. The C121 is a true step up in quality from the Japanese instruments given the extensive handcraftsmanship and is built for those seeking a German upright built in a legendary traditional style.
The C121 features a fluid, easily controllable action with extended keys, and there’s a massive tonal dynamic range that facilitates the playing of all types of music and repertoire.
This instrument is a perfect example of classic German piano making, and should surely be explored in a piano showroom by those seeking a special 48” upright acoustic piano.
The C121 features a premium action designed by Schimmel and made in Germany by Renner. As a new upgrade over the C120, the C121 now receives the same extended length keysticks as the instruments from the Konzert series (trickled down from the ‘Konzert Grand’, an exciting new trend in piano manufacturing). The extra-long keystick length allows for greater control of the action, especially at dynamic extremes, and has been becoming a trend among more forward-thinking manufacturers in recent years.
Schimmel instruments also receive their own mineral-based keytops, which provide a very nice texture. Overall, this action is highly fluid – quick and effortless. Getting around advanced classical repertoire will be no problem with this action.
Schimmel pianos are known for the bright and clear tone, along with the super immediate attack. They’re typically much brighter in tone than other German uprights, which is likely due to the heavier hammers Schimmel uses.
This holds true with the C121 – this instrument produces a powerful tone with laser-like levels of clarity, all the way from the bass to the treble.
The bridge caps are horizontally laminated, something entirely unique to Schimmel, which changes the overall harmonics of the tone with greater sustain. This design has also trickled down from the Konzert series.
To reinforce the brighter tonal philosophy Schimmel is shooting for with the C121, they’ve gone with Beech core hammer shanks as opposed to the Mahogany selected for the Konzert series.
High-quality felt is supplied by Wurzen, and the hammers are double felted for clarity.
The C121 features soundboards of AA Bavarian spruce. These soundboards have been aged, and are tapered for greater resonance and tonal projection.
The C121 features a redesigned cabinet with a much slicker, modern aesthetic than the C120. The C121 was clearly designed to be integrated with modern home interiors, and since Schimmel’s humble beginnings in Leipzig Germany, they’ve accumulated a vast treasure trove of design awards.