In today’s world, with a lot of options for everything, we have to choose what’s best for us. When it comes to buying a digital piano, you must understand and consider purchasing the best keyboard, no matter if you are a beginner, intermediate, or a professional piano player.
In this article, we’ll cover all the essential things that you should know about a digital piano so that you can end up having the best for you. Also, we’ve listed the Best 8 Digital Piano and Keyboard that you can refer to. If you find the best for you, then you can buy them.
Everything is not perfect because even if they have every feature you want, it will lack a few things. But don’t worry as we’ll cover all the topics that you should know about the piano so that you can choose the one you can rely on the most.
Before going in deep about what things to consider while buying the best digital piano, we’ll first look at some advantages that you must know before buying a digital piano over the traditional acoustic piano.
- Volume and Versatility– A traditional acoustic piano produces a specific volume range that depends on how hard you strike the keys. But the volume of a digital piano is easily controlled, and even for best practices in silence, you can use headphones, which mostly all the latest models have.
They also have extensive sound sets with which you can easily add drums and percussion, woodwinds, brass, and many other sounds.
- Portability– As compared to acoustic pianos, digital pianos are much lighter and are easy to carry. Even they can fit in your vehicle when you have to perform on stage.
- Recording capability– Almost all models of the digital piano allow you to record your performance, which can be a great advantage when you are at a learning stage. It is also essential when you create your songs.
- Connectivity– Most digital pianos have features for MIDI connectivity that allow you to connect the keyboard to computers and recording equipment. Many also have a USB port for connecting with all kinds of audio gear.
Remember, every digital piano can be called a digital keyboard, but every keyboard is not called the digital piano.
This is because there is a difference between a digital piano and a keyboard, which is that, unlike digital pianos, the main focus of keyboards is not to replicate acoustic piano.
There are different types of both digital piano and keyboards as well.
Types of Digital Piano:
There are different types of digital pianos, and depending upon your requirements, you may buy the type.
- Portable Type (Slab Pianos)- they are the most popular type of digital piano and doesn’t come with a stand. They have a full range of 88 hammer-action keys just like an acoustic piano, making them a bit heavy but still much lighter than an acoustic piano. It also has superior sound quality.
- Console Type– they come with a furniture style cabinet and three pedals and are meant to stay in one place as they are a bit heavy, and because of their design, they are not easily portable.
- Upright Style– they feature big, fancy cabinets and are also the most expensive type of digital piano. It has a sophisticated hammer action and a multi-speaker sound system.
- Digital Grand Pianos– they are even more expensive than upright pianos and offer a powerful sound and a great experience. This has a vast body that helps in producing a deep, resonant sound.
- Stage Piano– they are mainly designed for live performance purposes as they don’t usually have built-in speakers because they are used with an external amplifier or PA system.
Types of Keyboard:
There are many different types of keyboards, so we’ll stick to the standard four types.
- Portable Arranger Keyboards– it is easily affordable and portable as well, which is suitable for beginners. It is lightweight and usually loaded with many sounds, songs, rhythms, bells, and more. They have non-weighted action or semi-weighted action and have 48 notes or less.
- Synthesizers- it is commonly used in music production and allows you to create virtually any kind of sound that you can imagine. They come with a set of basic waveforms and pre-recorded sounds that can be mixed.
- Music Workstations– this allows you to perform a wide range of tasks that include sound synthesis, audio recording, sequencing, working with sound effects, etc. They usually come with many sound samples that can be customized with knobs and sliders.
- MIDI Keyboard– this generates and transmits MIDI data to other electronic devices. It connects to a computer and sends MIDI data to it via USB or MIDI ports. There’s no sound engine inside, which means that it cannot produce any sound on its own. Usually, they have non-weighted keys.
After you decide what type of digital piano or keyboard you want, it’s time to go through other things to help you buy the best.
- 0.1 Keyboard
- 0.2 Sound Quality
- 0.3 Polyphony
- 0.4 Portability
- 0.5 Sustain Pedal
- 0.6 Material
- 0.7 Accessories
- 1 Best 8 Digital Piano and Keyboards
- 2 Alesis Recital – 88 Key
- 3 YAMAHA P125 88-Key
- 4 Casio Privia PX-160BK
- 5 Alesis Melody 61 MKII
- 6 Korg microPiano 61
- 7 Yamaha YPT240 61
- 8 Alesis Recital Pro
- 9 Yamaha PSR-EW410
- 10 Conclusion:
Well, this is the central part of any digital piano because, at last, you use the keyboard of the piano to play your song. It should be of good quality and also the touch must feel realistic.
They are available with various numbers of keys, and the number must depend upon what space restrictions are right for you and what kind of music you like to play. A full-sized piano has 88 keys, and if you are a beginner, then you should have a full-sized keyboard.
The keyboard can be weighted, semi-weighted, synth, or Hammer action that offers a different feel.
Weighted and semi-weighted keyboard responses in a similar way that a traditional piano does. Hammer action enhances the reaction by adding actual mechanical hammers. At the same time, synth-action is more like an organ that can be played very quickly.
The very next thing that you need to evaluate after the keyboard is sound quality. If you are a beginner, then you may not need a high-end tone and sound. The more budget you have, the better will be the sound quality.
You will be primarily relying on the sound produced by the built-in speakers to ensure that they are of good quality and are also audible enough.
If you are a professional pianist, you have to be very careful about the sound quality because you don’t want to buy the one that doesn’t have a realistic sound.
Polyphony is the number of notes that can be played at the same time without notes being cut-off early, and the most basic models have a polyphony of 32 notes, and it’s above 200 for the best models.
Beginners can go for lower polyphony counts because they are sufficient for entry-level players. Having at least 64 notes of polyphony is fine regardless of what you are playing.
If you need a piano for your home, then it is fine, but if you want to carry your keyboard along with you, you need a portable one as they are light in weight compared to others.
It is a foot-controlled lever that allows you to play notes while moving your hands elsewhere on the keyboards. This is essential for pianists who are intermediate at playing or for those who are serious pianists.
The material of every product that you buy does matter, and it is crucial for beginners to get a good material digital piano or keyboard.
Some models offer cheap plastic keys, and mid-range or expensive models offer synthetic ivory built keys. Synthetic ivory built key types to improve your grip, providing a realistic execution-style.
It is also recommended that beginners buy the one that offers good touch sensitivity and counterbalanced keys, which will improve the ability to play expressively.
Accessories depend upon what type of piano you get for yourself and what you need more. If you buy a portable digital piano that doesn’t include a stand, you must buy a stand.
In case you love to practice in private, then you need a good pair of headphones that you can connect to the piano and practice. If you don’t buy a good headphone, you will definitely not have a pleasant experience with your performance.
You may also need a bench because you need to sit and play. But depending upon your needs, you should buy the one that suits you.
Now, you may have a brief idea about what type of digital piano you need to buy. To make it further easy for you, we have also listed the Best 8 Digital Piano and Keyboard along with their details, including positive things about them and even negative things. Choose wisely after analyzing all your requirements.
Best 8 Digital Piano and Keyboards
You will definitely find many different brands offering good digital piano and keyboard. Finding the best that can suit you is a difficult task, and for that following are some best digital piano and keyboard that you can buy.
Alesis Recital – 88 Key
Alesis Recital digital piano features an electric keyboard with 88 premium full-sized semi-weighted keys with adjustable touch response that suits your preferred playing style. It delivers an ultra-realistic sound and excellent playing experience.
This also features five realistic built-in voices that include Acoustic Piano, Electric Piano, Synth, Bass, and Organ. It customizes the voices by combining any two at once in Layer Mode for a full, rich tone.
There is also an option for adjusting Reverb and Chorus to tailor your sound further. It comes with powerful 20-watt built-in speakers and a 128-note for maximum note polyphony.
This piano has a useful feature called ” Lesson Mode” that divides the 88 keys into two zones with the same pitch and voice. This enables both the student and teacher to easily watch each other and play together.
This also features a 6.35mm output, which mutes the internal speakers for quiet private practice. A stereo RCA output is also there to connect to a recorder, mixer, amplifier, or other sound systems.
A USB-MIDI output is also featured for connecting it to Mac/PC to use educational software or virtual instrument plugins. This piano can be powered using the included power supply or by 6 D Cell batteries.
- Good portability
- The lesson mode is well thought
- Layering and split modes are well
- True surround 20Watt speakers
- Only semi-weighted keys
- It doesn’t come with a stand
- No demo songs
YAMAHA P125 88-Key
Yamaha P125 is a compact, 88-key weighted digital piano that gives a user-friendly performance. It is loaded with features that help in giving you an acoustic piano playing experience, that too in a portable package.
This piano produces dynamic, high-quality sound and natural piano touch response, yet maintaining a sleek and slim footprint.
This Graded Hammer Standard (GHS) piano keyboard provides a heavier touch in the low end and lighter touch in the high end, just like an acoustic piano.
It has a newly improved 2-way speaker system that produces an expansive piano sound in both upward and downward directions, which gives the player a rich stereo sound.
Every element of this piano is designed to help you stay focused on your performance. You can also control this with your smart devices.
Beginner and intermediate piano players will find the touch of this piano and the tone to be perfect for their repertoire. There is also a split mode that lets you play a different voice with each hand.
There is also USB to host connectivity with MIDI and audio transfer, which means you only need one cable to connect to your music-making software.
- It includes GHS weighted hammer
- Good sound projection
- Superior sound processor
- Clean design
- No pedals included
- Limited sounds
Casio Privia PX-160BK
Casio Privia PX-160 BK utilizes Casio’s famous AiR Sound Source along with its remarkable Tri-Sensor Scaled Hammer Action II keyboard.
This has a new elegant look with a redesigned speaker system. The AiR sound system delivers a sound with seamless dynamics for a remarkably expressive and powerful performance.
The Tri-Sensor Scaled Hammer Action II keyboard features new simulated Ebony and Ivory textured keys for an incredible feel. Its three sensors capture the dynamics of a performance with unparalleled speed and accuracy.
Its Hammer response makes sure that the rate at which different sized hammers move inside an acoustic grand piano is relative to the velocity of the keys played. This provides an ultimate key-to-sound experience.
It also accommodates a new 8Watt X 8Watt speaker system that delivers a remarkable sound with richness. This speaker system is open to the front and ported to the back, which provides exceptional sound when placed against a wall.
There are also newly developed string ensemble sounds. The piano provides split and layer capability that allows you to play bass in your left hand and have two layered tones in your right.
The duet mode splits the keyboard into two equal ranges so that the student and teacher can use the piano simultaneously. There is a two-track recorder that can record and playback your practice and performances.
It also has two headphone outputs located on the front of the instrument with a USB connectivity.
- It is portable and also has a stand
- Realistic Tri-Sensor Hammer Action II
- 128-note polyphony
- High-quality sounds including five pianos
- Improved speakers
- Built-in two-track recorder
- There is no display
Alesis Melody 61 MKII
Alesis Melody 61 MKII comes with all accessories to provide you playing professional keys right out-the-box, 300 built-in tones, and even a recording feature. It is an ultimate all-in-one solution that helps you focus on what’s essential for you while performing.
This has 61 responsive style keys with built-in speakers, which are perfect for practice and performing. There are 300 built intones with layer and split modes
There is also one-touch song mode with 300 built-in rhythms. You can play along 40 demo songs or can also record your song.
It also includes an easy to assemble the stand, bench with three adjustable height settings, headphones for quiet practice, a music rest, a power adapter, and a microphone for singing along when you are playing.
It comes with sound pallets, including pianos, strings, brass, Woodwinds, percussion, mallets, guitars, synths, and even sound effects.
It also includes 3-months of Skoove Premium by which you can learn the easiest way to play piano with in-depth online piano courses.
- 300 built-in instrument sounds
- 40 built-in demo songs for good practice
- Dual keyboard mode and split mode
- You can record and playback your performances
- Comes with easy to assemble stand and bench
- Headphones provide quiet practice
- Comes with three months of Skoove Premium
- Comes with a microphone
- No USB connectivity
- Microphone volume is not adjustable
Korg microPiano 61
Korg microPiano 61 is a stylish compact digital piano like a grand piano, which also has an opening lid. This features a 61-key Natural Touch mini-keyboard that is carefully designed to provide accurate playability.
It has a bold, smooth grand piano sound that generates full-bodied tones with depth and character. This comes with well equipped 61 vibrant and authentic sounds.
The sound of the keyboard goes beyond the traditional pianos to include electric pianos, accordion, celeste, harpsichords, organs, claves, toy pianos, and more. There are also flutes, harps, bells, strings, and mallet percussion sounds.
Of the 61 sounds, 25 are short Phrase sounds that can generate phrases automatically by holding down a key
- Great looks
- Limited connectivity
- Some sounds are of no use
Yamaha YPT240 61
Yamaha YPT240 is a 61-key portable keyboard that features 385 natural sound voices. You can practice at an individual level with the Yamaha Education Suite lesson functions.
It features a unique Wide Stereo technology for a full stereo image and great sound. It is the perfect introductory model for beginners.
The keyboard has USB connectivity, so you can also connect it to a computer and can use the keyboard as a MIDI controller. The keyboard can interface with many music apps for the iPhone and iPad.
There are 100 accompaniment styles and 102 songs built into the keyboard. There is also another feature of a built-in metronome, which helps beginners to be able to stay in time with whatever they are playing.
- Easy to set-up and use
- Reverb, Chorus and EQ effects are present
- Better portability
- Plenty of connectivity options
- Comes with Yamaha Education Suite
- It does not come with a power source
Alesis Recital Pro
Alesis Recital Pro is a full-featured digital piano with 88 full-sized hammer-action keys and an adjustable touch response.
This recital features 12 premium built-in realistic voices- acoustic piano, acoustic piano bright, electric piano, vibration, organ, church, organ, harpsichord, clavs, synth, strings, acoustic bass, fingered bass.
You can easily customize the voices by combining any two at once in Layer Mode for a full, rich tone. This also featured intuitive onboard controls and a bright LCD screen.
There is also an option to adjust modulation, reverb, and chorus to tailor your sound further. Voices can also be assigned to only the left or right hands in Split Mode.
It comes with a powerful 20-Watt built-in speaker and also a 128-note maximum polyphony. This Recital Pro delivers ultra-realistic sound.
There is also a feature naming Lesson Mode that divides the 88 keys into two zones with the same pitch and voice, enabling both the student and teacher to play together.
This also allows a “Record Mode,” which will enable you to record your playing and then listen to it later.
It features a 6.35mm headphone output, which mutes the internal speakers for convenient, quiet private practice. There is also a sustain pedal input, stereo output as well that can connect to a recorder, mixer, amplifier, or other sound systems. A USB-MIDI output is also there for connecting to a computer to use any educational software
- Affordable price
- Full-sized weighted keys
- Easy to use
- Also has a small screen on the top panel
- Sustain pedal not included
- Only one song can be recorded
Yamaha PSR-EW410 is designed and marketed for the beginner and intermediate piano players. It is a 76-key portable keyboard with a grand piano sound and a powerful sound engine.
This also has 48-note polyphony that allows for more notes to be played without drop-outs, making more complex passages possible.
This has an XG Lite voice library that is a next-level collection of voices over the General MIDI (GM) collection.
This is driven by the Yamaha AWM stereo sampling sound engine and has two onboard 12watt amplifiers and two 12 cm, speakers. It also has an impressive 758 total instrument voices with 2377 panel voices, 24 drums, and effects for a vast range of sound capabilities.
It also has a headphone and pedal Jacks, including an AUX IN to connect a music player and a USB to Host and USB To device ports for connection to computers and mobile devices.
This comes with innovative features, simple connectivity, lightweight, and portable design. It is among the top models in this series and comes with powerful speakers and an excellent set of styles.
- Massive library of voices and accompaniment styles
- 76 touch-responsive keys
- Can be powered by AC or DC
- Great AWM sound engine
- High-quality speaker sound
- A big music database
- USB connectivity is also present
- It can be challenging to learn the advanced features of this keyboard
In this article, we have covered all the essential things that you need to consider while buying the best digital piano and keyboard. As a beginner, it is very important to find a perfect piano for learning and improving skills. For that, we have also listed the best eight digital piano and keyboard that you can buy after going through all their features and reviews.
We would personally recommend Alesis Melody 61 MKII digital piano and keyboard because this is the one that comes with all the features required for having a great experience while playing. This also gives 3-months of Skoove Premium, which provides the easiest way to play the piano with in-depth online piano courses.