Why Is The Ritmuller Piano The Undisputed Leader In Price vs. Performance?

Posted on: Tuesday, December 6th, 2016  In: Blog

It’s hard to imagine just a few years ago a piano that can stand up to the most discriminating pianist for it’s musicality tone and action and yet at the same time be priced slightly above the average entry level pianos from China and Indonesia.  But, the Ritmuller line of grand and upright pianos is that piano line.  At half the price of the comparable Japanese branded pianos, Ritmuller can stand shoulder to shoulder in quality with the best of Yamaha and Kawai and possesing a sweeter more longer lasting European tone. Made and sold drectly by the same factory making the Essex Piano for Steinway. Yet the Ritmuller is rated higher in the “pianobuyer.com” while costing less without Steinway’s additional mark up over the factory’s costs.*

What makes the Ritmuller so good are their incredible designs by one of Europe’s highest regarded piano designers, Lother Thoma.  Mr. Thoma is world renowned for his designs and has been responsible for or has been part of the team on most of the highest rated and most expensive pianos from Europe.  Never before in the history of pianos has the designer of so many of the most expensive exclusive piano brands designed something affordable.  In the past people who purchased a piano at the Ritmuller price point had to settle for an instrument of inferior musicality that might have a famous name on the front but not sound anything like the piano that make that famous name famous.  Take for example the Yamaha GB1 and the Kawai GL-10.  Both pianos come from famous manufacturers known for making high quality products.  Unfortunately so many corners have been cut on  these instruments they’re extremely lacking in musicality.  Thud like dead sounding bass sections. Upper ranges with hardly any sustain and sustaining tones which usually die out in a few seconds.  These qualities are less present in Yamaha and Kawai’s more expensive instruments although they still have some of these same issues we’ve spoken about although to a lesser extent.

The Ritmuller R8 for near the same price as the Yamaha and Kawai and less in price than the Essex incorporates Lothar Thoma’s designs with innovations and German parts that create a musical bass section unlike the Japanese counterparts.   The Ritmuller has an upper section with sustain and musicality and a fast responsive action any pianist would be delighted with . The Rimuller R9 at 5’3″ is the same size as a the well made but musically inferior Yamaha GC1.  It costs thousands less than the GC1 and has the musicality of Yamaha’s C1X at nearly half the price.

The GH 148, 160, 170, 188 & 212 are the handbuilt series with features and performance that astound most people who play them.  These are German pianos in every detail of their sound and musicality at a price that is still thousands less than competing pianos from Japan because of Japanese labor.  Stephen Mohler  the renowned German piano designer and technician lives near the factory and is there in the factory full time personally overseeing  seeing all Ritmuller piano production.  We’ve been there and have seen it first hand.  There is a deep commitment to building something more than just a good piano for the price but rather a good piano for any price.  Stephen works with the production team spending a great deal of time on both the piano sound and ensuring that the pianos are rock solid years from now.  Compare the Rittmuller 170 to the Yamaha  GC2, the Yamaha C2X, the Kawai GL30, and the Kawai GX30 and you will fins a piano that has longer sustaining tone along with deeper bass.  Ascetically and unlike the Yamaha GC2 and Kawai GL30 the Ritmuller has a beveled lid, a spade leg, and premium hardware like the more expensive 2 models from Yamaha and Kawai.  These comparisons are the same up and down the Ritmuller line.  We’ve had prestigious pianists and venues choose the Ritmuller 212 7′ model over pianos that were three times the price at competitors and in our own showroom.  When you shop for a piano does the better known brand have European scale designs? Do they have not only solid, close-grained premium Northern Spruce tapered soundboards but soundboards with extremely close grain? Do they have Premium German Renner™ hammers, regarded by most piano builders as the finest available found on almost every high end European piano? Does the piano have real ebony wood sharps? Do  they have Hornbeam wood hammers and North American Maple action parts? Do they have a vertically laminated hardwood bridge with a solid hardwood cap for durability? All of these quality materials are unique to Ritmuller only.

The Thoma designed Ritmuller uprights have the same benefits against the competition in musicality.  The  48″ UH121 has a greater musicality than the Yamaha YU1s at substantially less price.  There is no competition in the lower model Yamaha uprights such as the B3, U1 and even the YUS1, with none of them coming close in musicality or sustaining tone. The same is true for the Kawai K300 and K400.  Both of which are nicely made but lacking in sustain and musicality compared to the Ritmuller.  In fact he Ritmuller UH121 was singled out in the “Pianobuyer.com” as their favorite piano in the category and when you hear it you’ll understand why. Ritmuller’s UP121 48″ combines affordability with musicality.  It play circles around pianos such as the Yamaha B3 or Kawai K300 from the standpoint of depth of tone and musicality. It again challenges the higher level Yamaha and Kawai pianos but at a substantially lower cost.

The 52″ Ritmuller UH132 is one of the most refined and advanced 52″ pianos on the market. Many people have remarked that this piano is reminiscent of the $70,000 Bechstein 52″ which coincidentally was also designed by Lothar Thoma.  Priced significantly less that the Yamaha U3, YUS3 or YUS5 it has a level of sustain that neither can match which also goes for a comparison to the Kawai K500 and K800. It is a strong competitor to the Yamaha SU7 at a fraction of the price.  Hollywood Piano has recently arranged to be the only Ritmuller Representative in the country to feature the UH132 in stunning Macassar Ebony with nickle hardware and Kewazinga Bubinga. See the pictures. Both are in stock now.  The Bubinga is in Pasadena and the Macassar is in Burbank.

Ritmuller UH132 Kewazinga Bubinga

Ritmuller UH132 Kewazinga Bubinga

Ritmuller UH132 Macassar Ebony

Ritmuller UH132 Macassar Ebony












If you love quality, great sounding pianos and also saving lots of money,  you need to try the new Ritmuller for yourself to understand what all of the international buzz is about. Don’t let the low price of the Ritmuller piano fool you into thinking it can not compete with more expensive pianos.

“I like the Ritmüller pianos, and think that the transformation of the Ritmüller line over the last few years has been one of the more authentic and musically successful changes in the piano industry.” — Larry Fine author of the pianobuyer.com book and website

Larry Fine recently told me Ritmuller piano prices are too low for the high quality you are getting. He said they should raise their prices.  Lucky for all of us for now these pianos could personify the phrase “the best bang for the buck”.

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