PianoDisc is the manufacturer of the leading brands Prodigy Player Systems and QuietTime Silent systems for (grand) piano’s, with a dealer network that spans the globe. The company was founded in 1988, and in very short order became one of the most successful, innovative and influential companies in the music products industry.
PianoDisc began in a modest-sized piano retail store in Sacramento, California, which was owned by brothers Gary & Kirk Burgett. In 1979, the two had decided to start a business together that would take advantage of each one’s talents and interests. Gary was a pianist and music teacher with a successful studio of his own, and Kirk was a skilled piano technician and rebuilder. The company they founded was called Burgett Pianos, and through a combination of hard work and marketing savvy they rapidly took annual sales from 50 pianos to over 400.
One important selling tool for the brothers was a product called Pianocorder, a cassette-driven player system that could be added to any piano. The Burgetts let Pianocorder demonstrate their pianos in malls, department stores, model homes and a host of other offsite locations, and it drew fascinated customers—people who didn’t play the piano and never would have thought of buying one—into their store.
Pianocorder sales eventually made up close to 40% of Burgett Pianos’ business, so the brothers were alarmed when, in 1988, Yamaha (the Japanese piano manufacturer), bought the rights to Pianocorder and promptly took it off the market. Yamaha planned to come out with its own player system and wanted to eliminate its competition beforehand.
Since the Burgetts were not Yamaha dealers, they suddenly had no player system to sell and stood to lose 40% of their sales. In the true entrepreneurial spirit, the Burgetts saw this not as a catastrophe but as an opportunity. They knew they were not alone—there were thousands of piano dealers with no product to sell—so they decided to meet the demand by making their own system, which they called PianoDisc. They produced their first system in March of 1989 and over the years many generations of PianoDisc player systems have been introduced, each one expanding the capabilities and features of the last.
To support a product as sophisticated as PianoDisc, a music library was needed that was just as sophisticated, so the company began recording some of the world’s finest pianists. Over the years, more than 4000 songs in every category of music have been recorded for PianoDisc and its library continues to grow.
Today, PianoDisc systems are in private homes, hotels, restaurants, music schools, recording studios and a host of other places, bringing the joy of live music to anyone who hears them. The company has over 600 dealers and distributors in 40 countries around the world. Wherever it’s shown, everyone agrees PianoDisc is one of the most exciting music products to come along in decades, and an important component in modern home entertainment.
What is the PianoDisc Prodigy?
Prodigy is the world’s most advanced high-resolution computerized piano player system that can be fitted to almost any acoustic piano that plays live piano music at the touch of a button.
…the masterful and moving performances of the world’s top musicians, recreated and played back perfectly on your piano. With over 1,024 levels of dynamic expression and a high-resolution system that plays up to a nanosecond of expression and sensitivity, PianoDisc is the world’s leading player piano system.
Every nuance and intricacy expressed by the original artist—from the loudest fortissimo to the softest pianissimo—is perfectly captured and replicated on your piano.
What is QuietTime?
QuietTime is a system that includes a piano silencer that prevents the hammers from striking the piano strings when activated, muting the usual acoustic sound of the piano, This enables the user to listen to a digital piano or other instrument sounds through a set of stereo headphones.
After switching on the QuietTime muting system, a stop bar ensures that the hammer heads do not touch the strings and that no acoustic sound emanates from the piano.
Using an advanced optical sensor strip underneath the keys, the sound is still activated for listening with headphones. So you can enjoy piano music without e.g. disturbing your neighbors or roommates.
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