Yamaha, in conjunction with high-end Chinese furniture maker Mexarts, recently revealed three new digital pianos. These are concept models—you can’t buy them (at least not yet). Their aim is to show new ways in which a piano can become an integral part of a home.
The three instruments, entitled A-Round, Be-Side, and Re-Mind were designed by Sunao Okamura, Masaharu Ohno and Daizo Sato from the Yamaha Product Design Laboratory in Hamamatsu, Japan.
Each design utilises one of Yamaha’s digital pianos as the core instrument. But the objective is to show how these can be transformed into living pieces of domestic furniture. The designers’ brief was to produce instruments that “enrich everyday life”.
With its soft curvaceous shape, the A-Round has a soothing, calming appearance. The natural wood finish in conjunction with the leather key-cover gives the instrument an additional warmth. It instantly becomes the focus in any room. And with its flat top, is like a table around which a family can gather.
With its compact, shallow casework featuring a small, integral side table, the Be-Side is designed primarily for the bedroom. A quick tune to unwind before turning in? A rousing concerto in the middle of the night if you can’t sleep (headphones, please!)?
The dark wood finish is elegantly fashioned to have an updated mid-century modern feel, and the fold-down lid again provides a flat level surface—always useful in the bedroom.
This instrument gives the impression of being propped up against a wall. Perhaps a homage to the Victorian wall-piano? The look is minimalist. However, it is also very striking.
Two narrow shelves run above the keyboard. Although they could be utilised for sheet music or an iPad, the designers suggest that they could be for family photos, mementoes, etc. This unique design thus evokes both fun and nostalgia.
Awards and Expos
Unfortunately these elegant digital pianos aren’t available to buy, but hopefully, some of their design elements will filter down to the instruments we do see in the shops. Let’s face it, most of today’s digital pianos look very much the same and rather uninspiring at that!
All three digital pianos can be seen at Yamaha’s Ginza Showroom in Tokyo until February 17, 2019.
See also: What if Japan had Developed the Piano?
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