What is Voicing and how can the tone of my piano be improved?
All pianos are not created equal. Tone can be controlled within the constraints of the quality of your piano. Think of your piano as being the speakers in a stereo system and the hammers and voicing as the components that drive the tone. There are many factors that control the tone of your piano in addition to scale design and construction. Hammer size, density, shape, felt quality and of course the voicing. Keep in mind, that only the finest pianos are voiced during the manufacturing process. Major improvements in tone can be achieved in pianos that have never been voiced.
Where do we start? ........ Your piano must be in tune and the action in good regulation. We then discuss your tone preference. Do you like a mellow tone or a very bright tone? Ideally, when you have no preference, my target is a mellow tone on soft passages and bright powerful tone when playing fortissimo. This can only be achieved by a technician with many years of experience in voicing.
The first step is to shape the hammers. A round, fat, soft hammer will give a weak, dead tone, whereas a thin, dense hammer will give a sharp, shrill tone. We need to balance the density and shape. We refer to the perfect shape, as a "pear" shaped hammer. Once the hammer is shaped, we then work on the density. Let's think of this as the bass, treble and volume controls. We first listen to the overall tone. Is the tone too soft, dead and muddy or is it too bright, thin and tinny? We now adjust the overall density. When the shape and overall density has been adjusted, we then play each note and adjust each hammer to create a balanced, uniform tone throughout the entire keyboard. The reaction? "I never thought my piano could sound this good!"
Through wear and changes in temperature and humidity, your piano will need to be readjusted for peak performance. Here we target response, repeatability, dynamic range, feel and touch. These are all adjusted to give you full control of the playing dynamics of your piano, from the softest passages to a full "fortissimo"
Excellence begins with imagination, knowledge and experience.