If you are buying either a new or used piano "with strings" (as opposed to a purely digital [no strings] piano), you MUST buy this book.
If you are buying a NEW piano, you also need to buy the yearly "Supplement" book (Current version is "2001-2002 Annual Supplement to The Piano Book", also by Larry Fine).
Together, these two books do not cost much. You WILL save hundreds and perhaps thousands of dollars.
Here is what is covered in each book:
THIS BOOK - "The Piano Book". This book has chapters on How a Piano Works, Buying a New Piano, Buying a Used Piano, Piano Moving, Piano Care, and a special chapter entitled "A Consumer Guide to New and Recently Made Pianos", which includes brand by brand listings and rankings in a number of categories. This book DOES NOT include price information. This book has 234 pages of content!!
THE SUPPLEMENT - "2001-2002 Annual Supplement to The Piano Book". This book provides "suggested" list prices for almost every manufacturer and model, AND discusses % discounts you can expect. For example, did you know, that the average discount off of list price is between 15-25%?
This book is published every year in August, based on data from that Spring. For example, this "2001-2002" was published in August 2001, based on data from June 2001. This means that the "2002-2003" version should be available in August 2002. This book has 98 pages of discount and list price information!!
The author has his own website (pianobook.com) which is also listed in the book, and even offers private phone consulatations (for a fee, given your specific needs).
BOTTOM LINE: Buy both of these books. Trust me, you will NOT be disappointed!!!