Hi there and thanks for clicking through to my page. I’ve had dozens of Yamaha U30BL pianos in stock over the years so I think I’m fairly well qualified to give a little bit of information about them. If I miss anything out or you have any questions in general, please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org (UK enquiries only please).
The U30BL can be thought of as a very very close relative of the Yamaha U3. It is the same size, was built in the same factory and is of the same build quality as the Yamaha U3. The important thing to note is that the Yamaha U3 and the Yamaha U30BL both begin with the letter “U”. The U means that the piano is in Yamaha’s top line of pianos. You have the B series at the bottom (made in Indonesia), the P series in the middle (made in various factories all over the world) and you have the U series, most of which are made in Yamaha’s premier factory in Japan. It is in this same factory that Yamaha make their concert grand piano, the CFIIIS which retails at over £100,000.
I’m not yet 100% clear on why this model was introduced but apparently it was produced as a slight improvement over the U3 but I haven’t been able to find out what the improvements were. I suspect this could have just been a marketing claim at the time and that in reality it is very much the same piano as the Yamaha U3. It may have been given a new model number if it was destined to be sold to a different part of the world than the U3. Further research is needed really so if you find anything out please email me at email@example.com so that I can add that info to this page.
Physically, the 2 pianos look very similar and there are only some very minor differences to the cabinet design. Here are 3 different photos of a Yamaha U30BL and 3 photos showing a Yamaha U3. Article continues below the photos.
Yamaha U30BL cabinet
Yamaha U30BL – Notice there is no lock
Yamaha U30BL notice that the model number is a transfer, not embossed.
Yamaha U3 Cabinet. Sorry for the fuzzy photo quality
Yamaha U3 – Notice that there is a lock on the U3
Yamaha U3 model number is physically embossed to the iron frame
In terms of the musical characteristics of the U30BL I find it to be very similarl to the U3 which means it has a rich, deep tone with just enough brightness to bring the melody out but certainly not overly bright like many smaller Yamahas can be. To avoid overly bright pianos try to stick to pianos that are at least 130cm tall. The extra string-length and soundboard size of these pianos help give a richer, deeper tone.
Overall, my advice when considering this model is that you should think of it as a U3 and don’t let yourself worry too much about the story behind the U30BL label.
As ever if you have any questions at all please drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll be happy to discuss anything with you.
Many thanks for your interest