Do you enjoy the lovely sound of a piano? Would love to learn to play it, and spend beautiful nights playing the music instrument that have shaped generations of culture and renaissance. The piano resembles beauty, purity, softness, and greatness.
Having and playing a piano is a symbol of status, eloquence, and taste. These massive instruments made of ebony tree represent the quality of life, the musical taste, and the sentimental value. On the other hand, pianos are pretty expensive, meaning they aren’t available for everyone.
Nowadays, you can go to the music store and buy the digital piano to fulfil your artistic taste and desire. Although, this is much easier than it was in the past, making the right choice can sometimes be difficult. Whether you are an amateur or a professional, there are same features you need to look for and some features to avoid.
We’re listing the best digital piano you can get today, and to choose in the following holiday season. Let’s see what you need to know to make the perfect decision.
Acoustic Piano Vs Digital Piano
It is no surprise to say that both acoustic and digital pianos have good features and not so good ones. There are many differences between these two starting from the quality of the sound to the price. But the final verdict is up to you.
If you’re on a budget, a digital piano is your best choice. A best grand piano will cost you around $10,000, and you can find an excellent digital piano for about $1,000 and even less.
It is very hard to pronounce the winner in this category because the sound is entirely subjective. Acoustic pianos have adjustable sound, which is produced by a digital motherboard connected to a speaker. The classical music sound of acoustic pianos is pure, natural, and very authentic.
The digital piano sounds more, well, “digital” and heavier. But, with each new model, digital pianos are becoming better in copying the sound of the acoustic pianos. The difference is there, but is getting thinner.
If you are a beginner, the digital piano is a better solution for you. Firstly, with a wide variety of enhancements available for digital pianos, the learning process will become much easier and more fun. For example, acoustic pianos have built-in musical accompaniments to play alongside or metronomes. Also, if you plan to practice in the night hours, with a digital piano you have the ability to plug in the headphones and don’t disturb the surroundings.
The acoustic piano is a good choice if you are a professional or long-time player. Also, if you have the money and a lot of time to practice, especially during the day the grand piano will produce an unforgettable experience.
The digital pianos are much cheaper and easier for maintaining. They don’t need to be tuned or stored on proper room temperature. Also, they can be easily moved around.
The acoustic pianos need to be tuned, and you need to take special care of them. For example, the moisture, heat, and humidity can damage the instrument so you must consider all these parameters before you chose the room in which you will place the piano. Also, they are massive, so they can’t be moved around easily.
If you want to give your room a romantic and elegant look, the acoustic piano is the perfect choice. The grand piano looks luxurious and bulky. But, if your apartment/house isn’t spacious or you like modern look than the digital piano is an ideal choice for you.
How To Choose The Best Digital Piano?
Here we are going to give you some useful tips on how to choose the best digital piano. There are few features that you need to check before making the final choice.
There is a broad range in cost when it comes to choosing the right digital piano model. So, no matter how big your budget is, don’t worry, you can find something that will suit you.
The price of the model depends on its features. For example, the models with advanced features and better material quality are more expensive than the basic digital pianos.
Many companies make a variety of digital piano models to fit different budgets. This means that you find a good digital piano for less than $500.
Number of Keys
The number of keys determines how big the piano is and the price, of course. The standard piano has 88 keys, which is considered “full size.” Acoustic pianos have 88 keys as well. However, the digital pianos vary from 25 to 88 keys. The number of keys depends on your needs and skill level.
If you need a small piano because you don’t have enough space in the room, choose the model with 61 or 76 keys, but we don’t recommend you to go any lower if you are planning to invest in a digital piano. With less than 61 keys you won’t have the notes depth, which could make you feel limited.
If you are a beginner, always choose a model with a full number of keys – 88. To learn to play, this is the only model for you.
The key weight is also known as “action,” and it is considered to be the second most important feature of the digital piano. The action refers on digital piano’s “feel” or what it feels like when you press the keys. When you play the acoustic piano, you feel the resistance and weight while pressing the keys, because the hammer moves and strikes the piano’s strings. A digital piano doesn’t have strings or hammers because it is a computer, but it needs to copy the weighted feel of the real piano. The expensive models have better “action.” If you want to have the authentic playing experience, look for the pianos with “fully-weighted” keys or “hammer action.”
Although “polyphony” sounds so professional and you think that you don’t need to bother with it, actually it is something very simple, and you are already familiar with it. Polyphony is the maximum number of notes that the digital piano can produce at once. Typically, digital pianos have 32, 64, 128 or 192 polyphony. This means that if the polyphony of the keyboard is maximum 64 when you reach 64 notes at the same time, the older ones will suddenly drop off.
The digital piano must be plugged in speakers or headphones to make a sound. The best solution is to buy the model with built-in speakers because you can hear yourself playing without a need to buy the extra speakers. This is especially convenient if you teach children to play: you don’t need to teach them how to plug in the speakers or headphones in piano (or to do it for them), just show them how to turn on the piano.
Top Five Best Digital Piano Reviews
Let’s take a look at the reviews of the five selected best digital pianos that you can get on the market today.
The Yamaha YPG-235 is a portable 76-keys piano featuring Graded Soft Touch Action, a built-in recorder, with USB connectivity and a pitch bend wheel commonly found in MIDI keyboards. It comes with a Yamaha Education Suite aimed to teach you to play by breaking down songs into separate components such as pitch and rhythm then reconstructing them once mastered. It is fairly light and portable, perfect for show travelers and band practices. Also, an LCD screen makes it easy to use. With its vast selection of features it is perfect for beginners.
If you are somebody who is learning to play, it also has a Performance Assistant Technology which should help you understand the chords. On the other hand, if you are an advanced player, a built-in sequencer should be useful when it comes to recording your songs.
Bear in mind that it does not feature automatic power down meaning you should be careful not to accidentally leave it on. Also, it is a shame it does not feature weighted keys depraving you the realistic feel of an acoustic piano but it is well built, and it feels expensive.
- 76 Piano-style keys
- Graded Soft Touch Action
- Full Keyboard Mode
- 6-track recorder
- Yamaha Education Suite V6
- Computer Connectivity
- Master EQ
- More than double speaker output
- Performance Assistant Technology
- Music Database 300 keyboard setups
- Custom backlight LCD
- Easy to use
- Good audio output
- Responsive action
- Touch sensitive keys
- Non-weighted keys
- No auto power-off feature
- Low polyphony
Yamaha DGX-660 is an advanced version of the best-seller Yamaha DGX-650, designed with advanced features, very impressive sound and overall instrument quality. It has a full-size-graded (88), hammer-standard-weighted keys, Pure CF sound sampling, split action and many other useful things.
Another great feature that we liked is the Room Function, along with chord display and recording function. But it is certainly not without the flaws being one of the least portable pianos out there.
One of the reasons this particular model is on the higher end in this price range is its tremendous combination of sound and features. In fact, for as many features as you get, it is unbelievable it does not cost way more. Of course, it has some minor drawbacks such as its heavy and robust construction which will limit you only to your room or studio and it has only one pedal.
Some would say it is even difficult to use, but we think for a beginner it is not a digital piano that you’ll soon outgrow. Even for an advanced player, it sounds pretty impressive but at a higher price, unfortunately.
- 88 Weighted Keys
- Graded Hammer Action
- Velocity Sensitive
- 205 Styles
- 192-Note Polyphony
- Sampled from CFIIIS 9’ Concert Grand
- USB Audio Playback/Recording
- Built-in Amplifier and Speakers
- Smart Chord for Single-Finger Chording
- Microphone Input
- Damper Pedal
- LCD Display
- Power Supply included
- High-quality structure
- Touch sensitive keys
- Realistic sound
- Affordable price
- Heavy robust construction
- Difficult to use
- Single pedal
- Wrong position of notes holder
The Yamaha YDP143R is an updated version of its ever so popular Yamaha YDP142 with some new features and reduced power consumption, featuring an 88-key GHS keyboard with key cover. This piano is designed with Pure CF sound engine which simulates the CFIIIS grand piano sound making it a suitable choice for all those pianists who are in need for excellent tonal quality, feel and touch. Also, this model has increased to 192 voice polyphony giving it even more enhanced sound.
The YDP143R’s playing action is fairly similar to a real piano and doesn’t feel overly springy. However, it should be noted that pedals can be difficult to master at first since they are a bit tough to operate, but over time it is possible to learn better control and adapt. Also, it is a pity it does not have LED or LCD display.
Bottom line, it is a complete package with improved features in comparison to its predecessor yet offering a great value for money being even at the higher price range.
- 88 keys GHS Keyboard with key cover
- Pure CF sound engine
- Intelligent acoustic control and optimizer
- 192 Voice polyphony
- 10 Voices
- Reverb and damper resonance
- Dual-function and Duo mode
- 3 Pedals
- 2 Headphone outputs
- 2 x 6-Watt Speaker system
- Similar to real piano action
- Good key sensitivity
- Crisp, clear sound
- MIDI to PC feature
- Heavy and not portable
- Tough to operate pedals
- No LED/LCD screen
The Casio Privia PX160GD is an 88-Key Full-Size Digital Piano, and it is about as close as you can get to having a grand piano in your home and certainly without taking up as much space. It is equipped with an Acoustic and Intelligent Resonator, so called AiR, which is Casio’s multi-dimensional sound production system. It also features a Tri-Sensor Scaled Hammer Action II Keyboard which is promised to provide that delicate feel and great sound when you play the keyboard.
One of the most important thins regarding a digital piano is its sound system which, typically, are far from perfect but with this particular model this is not a problem since it has some pretty impressive high-quality built-in speakers. However, it is somewhat difficult to program, but it is all a matter of practice.
Take note that it will not be easy to carry or move it around since it is not on the light side. Overall, this model almost perfectly replicates the feeling of a traditional grand piano thus making it ideal for a serious musician, especially in that price range.
- 88 Keys with tri-sensor scaled hammer-action keyboard
- 18 built-in tones
- 128 voice polyphony
- 60 presets
- AIR proprietary sound source
- Damper resonance simulator
- Onboard digital effects
- MIDI and USB connections
- Synthetic ebony and ivory keys
- 2 x 8-watt speakers
- Music stand and music book included
- Full range of sound
- High-quality performance
- Weighted keys
- MIDI/USB controls
- Excellent value for money
- Quite heavy to move
- Difficult to program
- The keys may break under pressure
- Some recording feature issues
The Casio PX-860 Privia Digital Home Piano could set a new standard in opposite to all future digital pianos. It is marked at the same price as its predecessor PX-850 model, but it features some major sound upgrades. Also, it has a new music library which consists of 10 orchestra classical songs which can be played along with the piano sounds. Another notable feature is the Hall Simulation Feature which will allow players to simulate the sound like if they were playing inside a concert hall, stadium or some cathedral setting.
Apart from these upgrades, it is essentially the same as the PX-850 which is not a bad thing at all. Playing on it was a very delight experience immersing you in the pleasure of fantastic sound. Not to mention the superb touch with its real ebony/ivory keys which have a very smooth response.
Actually, it does not have some mentionable downsides except some minor issues concerning its heaviness or maybe a little bit shaky baseboard. The price might be a little too much for some buyers, but it is nothing compared to the experience of playing this digital piano.
- 88 Ebony and Ivory feel keys
- Tri-sensor scaled hammer action keyboard
- Touch response with three sensitivity levels
- 18 built-in tones
- Damper resonance simulator
- Onboard digital effects
- 20 + 20-watt speaker system
- Key off keyboard simulator
- AIR proprietary sound source
- Keyboard cabinet and pedal array included
- Durable quality wood
- Superb touch with ebony and ivory feel
- Large range of voices
- Solid price for what it provides
- Shaky baseboard
- Limited to 5000 notes recording
- Somewhat heavy
After testing all five digital pianos, it is time to pronounce the winner. The best digital piano is Casio PX-860 . This digital piano is made of durable and quality wood, so you don’t need to worry about buying a new one for an extended period. It has a full-size keyboard made of ivory and ebony, so it is perfect for both beginners and professionals. Also, the keyboard has hammer action so playing on Casio PX-860 Privia Digital Home Piano will feel like playing on the acoustic piano.
Buying this model will save you money because with this digital piano the pedal array and keyboard cabinet are included. With excellent performances and affordable price, Casio PX-860 digital piano is the perfect choice for every piano player.
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