Kemble Pianos was a British piano manufacturer, active from 1911 until 2009 (owned by Yamaha since the mid-80s). Almost all Kembles are uprights, with a small number of baby grands built, mostly pre-war. Kemble pianos are best known for building small modern and compact pianos of very high quality, and overcoming many of the difficulties associated with building very compact instruments. The Kemble ‘Compact’ and ‘Minx’ models are among the only ‘Compact’ or ‘Miniature’ pianos of good quality. We occasionally have smaller refurbished Kemble pianos in stock, if space is very tight these can provide a practical alternative to a high-end digital instrument, though of course the tone quality suffers due to the shorter strings and smaller soundboard.
Full-sized Kemble uprights generally have responsive, refined keyboard actions and typically British tone: clear and warm, never excessively bright. Case styles are generally simple and elegant, with mostly wood finishes until the Yamaha buyout, when black gloss became more common.
In the Yamaha-owned period, the Kemble factory produced some Yamaha pianos as well as their own, designated with an ‘N’ after the serial number; these instruments are of high quality, as good as their Japanese-built counterparts.
Kembles were always well-designed and sturdily built, and tend to last well; we usually have at least two Kembles in stock, one more modern example from the Yamaha era and one older refurbished instrument.