Vienna Concert models

 

Bösendorfer has influenced the development of piano manufacturing for many years and has played a decisive role in shaping it. To this day, Bösendorfer has successfully retained its individual, unique construction and the unmistakable Viennese Bösendorfer sound. 

In continuation of this valuable tradition, we have set ourselves the goal of developing a model series that remains true to the Bösendorfer sound, while at the same time ideally meeting all the demands and expectations of the 21st century. 

Through intensive research in close cooperation with artists, the concept for the "Vienna Concert" models could be successfully developed, resulting in decisive improvements in the areas of projection capability, dynamic potential, general resonance capability and sustain.

The innovative design of the VC models includes new developments in numerous areas of the construction:

  • Recalculation of the string scaling to optimize evenness and overall tonal balance. 

  • Newly developed concept for the entire acoustical assembly

  • Separated ring-shaped continuous soundboard bearing element

  • Ultimately precise and custom 3-dimensional crowning model for the individually manufactured acoustical assembly consisting of soundboard bearing element, soundboard, ribs and bridges. 

  • Numerous design measures to promote general stability and reliability 

As a roadmap, four project milesones were defined in the following order: basic research, concept development, tests on the existing grand piano model and finally the implementation as a new VC "Vienna Concert" piano model.


 

What are the main features of the new design of the VC models in detail:

 

It all starts with the optimal conception of the string scaling - meaning all decisive parameters that affect the stringing, such as length, diameter, tension, the division, alignment and positioning of the individual sections, the selection of 1-2 and possibly 3-cord bass strings, the ratio of string tension between the bass, middle and treble register, the choice of striking lengths and strike line etc...  Today, computer-aided programs can be helpful to visualize, calculate and design all the courses concerning inharmonicity curves, capacity utilization rates and tension distribution in perfect way in order to achieve a maximum of balance and equilibrium and an optimum of vibration capability and tonal sustain. For maximum exploitation of the tonal potential in the treble range, a duplex system at the hith pin area area right behind the bridge was designed to improve the tonal/dynamic potential of all Vienna Concert model sizes. In order to make the accessability to all Bösendorfer VC models as easy and natural as possible, we have deliberately abendoned the additional keys in the bass range even on medium and concert grand piano sizes.

 

On the one hand, the sub frame construction of the VC instruments is traditionally designed as a Bösendorfer-typical cross brace type subframe, whereby, for tonal considerations primarily solid spruce and beech wood is used - on the other hand this inner rim construction contains some innovative elements that have only been made possible by modern technology. Thanks to the 3-dimensional construction method and the subsequent high-precision processing based on the same model, all wooden joint connections in the area of the inner rim elements and the rim braces as well as the cross block and the keybed can be joined and assembled together with a precision never before achieved. The soundboard bearing design is designed in such a way that unlike earlier constructions it forms an independent, completely interconnected unit. The inner part of the outer rim is again, in good tradition, made of highest quality spruce, yet the inside and outside beechwood layers are reinforced to stabilize the outer rim sufficiently without giving up the tonal aspect of choosing solid spruce as the core material.

 

One of the most innovative elements of the Vienna Concert construction is certainly the new concept of the "acoustical assembly". By this we mean the unity of soundboard bearing element, soundboard, ribs and bridges.  The basis of this concept is a 3-dimensional model, individually tailored to the specific shape of each grand model, which most closely resembles a curved ellipsoid segment, which is transferred with the highest precision to all parts of the acoustical assembly. The number, placement, dimensioning and shape of the soundboard ribs have been designed accordingly to the same 3-dimensional curvature, taking into account the actual pressure conditions and forces resulting from the string tension - a new and innovative approach in the design process which has a positive effect on the resonating ability, efficiency and general response of the soundboard, which plays a decisive role as the most important and central sound radiating element of the piano.

 

For all VC models, a precise 3-dimensional design modeling for the cast iron plate was carried out appropriately to the individual shaping, which optimizes form stability and statics of the VC cast iron plates and thus contributes to the overall stability and reliability of the instruments.

 

The enormous importance of the action touch and playability should be not at all underestimated. In a lengthy process, we have consequently matched and lined up the geometry of the action, for the interaction of the acoustical assembly and the action playability in order to optimize the touch, the controllability of the action and consequently the complete control of the sound. In the course of this development step, the involvement of pianists was very intensive, since the set up and balance between the mechanical control and the tonal output plays a decisive role for the performer.