How We Selected The Best Beginner Keyboards
Shopping for the best beginner keyboard for your needs doesnt have to be a mystery, but there are a few key factors to keep in mind when making your purchase. Here are some of the details we looked at when compiling this list:
Features. Whenever possible, we selected beginner keyboards that come with dedicated lesson and coaching functions to help users hone their skills and grow accustomed to playing piano. The picks that dont include lesson functionality made the list due to their ability to emulate the feel and sound of a real piano, which is an incredibly helpful factor for honing precise skills.
Price and value. Keyboards come in a wide range of pricesstretching into the multiple thousands. We built this list with keyboards that are priced in a reasonable and accessible price bracket to ensure that users get the most value out of their purchase.
Brand and reputation. Each of these beginner keyboards is manufactured by reputable and longstanding brands with extensive experience in the musical instrument market. Going with an established manufacturer typically ensures that years of research and development support a products design.
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Vtech Record & Learn Kidistudio
The Vtech KidiStudio is a toddlers toy piano that I really like. Keep in mind again, this is a toy, this is not a professional piano or keyboard.
The VTech KidiStudio is meant for kids who are 3-6 years of age so they can take advantage of all of the features. This is a fun instrument to sit with your child and learn with them. The sounds again arent going to be spectacular, but theyre really not supposed to be for a toy piano.
It comes with drum tracks so your child can play along and keep the beat. This instrument is powered by AA batteries which makes it very portable as well. This toy is a little bit more expensive, but I would take this over many of the other toy pianos.
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Piano Keyboard Instrument Category #: Electronic Keyboards
Can you learn piano on a keyboard? Electronic keyboards are the most affordable way to get started, but learning piano on a non-weight, non-full-size beginner keyboard is less than ideal and could even be discouraging. We recommend upgrading to at least a digital piano as soon as possible.
If youre not ready to spend several hundred to a few thousand dollars on an instrument, your beginner piano student can get started with an electronic keyboard. Electronic keyboards come in many sizes and prices. Rather than trying to mimic the experience of playing on a real piano, they are designed to be mini synthesizers, and many come with lots of different instrument sounds and even pre-recorded rhythm tracks. Whats most important for a new piano student will be the number of keys and whether or not the keys are weighted.
Remember that learning on a keyboard with 88 weighted keys gives a student a big advantage. The weighted keys build hand strength and respond more like the keys of an acoustic piano, making it easier for an advancing student to move on. Most electronic keyboards do not have weighted keys.
If a keyboard with 88 weighted keys is still out of your price range, we recommend that students use a keyboard with at least 61 keys in order to be able to do all the exercises in our lessons.
Regarding the best keyboard for beginners, we recommend the Yamaha PSR Series. Models in the PSR lineup cost between $200 and $500.
Q: Do You Need Weighted Keys To Learn Piano
Weighted keys arent a requirement for learning piano and you can learn about melody, harmony, and more without ever touching a weighted key. However, if youre looking to perfect your technique and become acquainted with the physical response of a real piano, theres no substitute for weighted keys.
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What Is The Difference Between A Keyboard And A Digital Piano
So what is the difference between a keyboard and a digital piano? Dedicated digital pianos are aimed more at people who want an alternative to an acoustic piano, with full 88 weighted keys. Keyboards, on the other hand, are generally loaded with extra features and sounds. Keyboards are also more portable, with some having the option to be battery powered.
Some sort of acoustic piano sound is nearly always top of the list of sounds that a keyboard for beginners comes with. Still, the quality of this sound will be an important consideration â generally, the cheaper the keyboard, the less realistic the piano sound is likely to be.
Keyboards will usually have some sort of rhythmical accompaniment section with preset drum rhythms built-in, and many even feature onboard tuition features such as illuminated keys, a metronome and built-in songs to play along with.
The Number Of Keys For A Beginner
Generally speaking, most keyboards come with 49, 61, 73, or a full 88 keys, like a piano. There is no correct number of keys per se, but you may develop a preference as you continue practicing. Until then, you might not know the type of music you want to play or what qualities you will most appreciate from your keyboard.
And there are qualities aplenty!
Keyboards come in various shapes, sizes, styles, with different numbers of keys and tools built in. You can learn a lot about playing the piano with just 49 keys. However, we recommend going with 88. You wont be able to make the most out of all 88 keys when you begin. But thats okay you will have plenty of room to grow.
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How We Test The Best Keyboards For Beginners
It’s fair to say we aren’t short of choice when it comes to keyboards suitable for beginners. There are literally hundreds on the market. For that reason, it’s essential that we put the instruments through their paces to ensure they are worthy of being included in this guide to the best keyboards for beginners.
The first test – and most vital for us – is how the keyboard feels under our fingers. This is, of course, a combination of the key action as well as the size and shape of the physical key. To test the key action, we’ll make sure to play varying dynamics to see how the instrument responds. We’ll be sure to try out a myriad of different musical styles while we’re at it. This goes hand in hand with the keys’ texture, shape, and size. As these instruments are aimed squarely at novice players, they should feel welcoming and not too rigid.
Next is the sound of the keyboard. We will carefully go through the list of inbuilt tones while paying close attention to the speakers’ frequency range and assessing the usability of the voices. We aren’t all that interested in a keyboard with a million sounds if only two or three are actually useable.
Lastly, we will go through any extras included with the keyboard, such as pedals, audio outputs, MIDI compatibility and any accompanying app.
Benefits Of Keyboard Playing
There is a number of benefits to playing the keyboard. It can be a great way to relax and unwind, and it can also provide a creative outlet. Playing the keyboard can help to improve your coordination and motor skills, and it can be a great way to develop your sense of rhythm. Keyboards can also be a great way to bond with family and friends, as they can be a fun activity to do together. Finally, it can be a great way to meet new people, as many keyboard players are happy to share their passion with others.
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Little Tikes Poptunes Keyboard
The Little Tikes PopTunes keyboard is good for babies. This is a toy and it is also very cheap. The sound isnt anything crazy, but at 1 year old, the sound needs to do enough just for your child to hear it and enjoy it.
These arent crazy loud, which can be a plus if youre worried about your child driving you crazy with noise.
All of the keys are functional which is nice since a lot of pianos for toddlers are more so for show and dont work properly. The keys light up with LED lights that are located inside the toy.
This is a toy that is meant to keep your childs attention and get them interested in the piano as an instrument. Im a firm believer that exposing kids to musical instruments early is a wise choice.
The recommended age on this keyboard is ages 1-5 and I think this is smart. I wouldnt purchase this for a kid over the age of three personally as there are other more suitable options. It requires 3 AA batteries and it gives you a pretty long battery life as well.
Buying A Piano For Beginners: A Keyboard Instrument For Your Home
There are three basic categories of piano keyboard instruments. The largest and most expensive, and also the best when it comes to developing piano skills, are the acoustic pianos. There are also many good digital pianos, which are smaller, less expensive, and do a decent job of mimicking the sound and feel of an acoustic instrument. A third category, the electronic keyboard, is the least expensive option, but an electronic keyboard may not have the right touch to develop hand strength for a beginning pianist, or enough keys to play a wide range of music.
and receive over 300 video lessons accessible on any smart device.
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How To Choose A Beginner Keyboard Or Digital Piano
There are a few factors to consider when choosing a keyboard or digital piano, whether youre browsing the local music store or surfing through online retailers such as Amazon, Guitar Center or some other store operating in your area. Consider at least the following important factors: size and number of keys, are the keys weighted, does the instrument use MIDI and is the instrument new or used.
How Many Keys Do You Need
Keyboards come in numerous sizes, with the standard being 88 keys. Smaller keyboards are available with 76, 61, 49 and even 25 key options out there. When starting out, it’s best to go for something that can accommodate two-handed playing straight away, or you’ll be wanting to upgrade sooner than you think. For this, you’ll need at least 49 keys or four octaves.
For this reason, we’ve made sure all of beginner keyboards in this guide have a minimum of 49 keys, except for one â the Yamaha PSS-A50, which has 37 mini keys making it suitable for small children or players with small hands.
As a general rule – bigger is always better. Go for as many keys as you have room for, or your budget will allow. Buying a full-sized keyboard piano at the beginning means your new instrument has room to grow with you as you progress on your keyboard-playing adventure.
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What Are The Best Keyboard Pianos For Beginners
Whether youre learning new chords, how to read sheet music, or trying to play your favorite song from the radio, you can get by without a ton of buttons or unnecessary effects a simple setup and a power source are all youll really need to start playing some tunes or scales. Here are a few features and accessories we think are the most important to think about when looking for the best keyboard for beginners.
Number of Keys: Keyboards come in different sizes, each with a different number of keys. In general, the most popular keyboards and digital pianos come with 49, 61, 73 or a full 88 keys, like a real piano. As a beginner, you should be able to learn the basics with fewer keys, but we like starting with more keys so your instrument can grow with you as you progress in your playing. That way, you can play everything, no matter which octave its in.
Weight and Portability: Our favorite keyboards and digital pianos have weighted keys, which mimic the feel of playing the actual piano. Those keyboard pianos will likely feel a little heavier than options that dont have weighted keys. Whichever option you choose, keep in mind how much youll be moving your keyboard and how much youll need to carry it with you.
What Is The Best Keyboard Piano For Beginners
Many beginners start out with cheap digital pianos along the way to a more advanced instrument. Whether you want a starter instrument to learn basic songs or one high-quality keyboard to last you years, its important to consider how your keyboard can set you up for success.
The best cheap beginner keyboards provide a stable learning platform for students. The main factor here is how the keys respond: are they quick and snappy, or slower and more touch-sensitive? The best keyboard piano models provide more weight in the keys so you get more dynamic control across music genres.
Finding these keys in a beginner piano can help develop proper technique for future learning. Getting used to the weight of an acoustic piano is an important step in the learning process and these keyboard pianos replicate it better than their non-weighted counterparts.
Keyboard size can also make a digital piano better or worse for beginners. While 88-key keyboards offer the traditional scale of a full piano, theyre also unwieldy and tougher to navigate for smaller players.
If youre buying a keyboard for a young beginner, a 61-key or 73-key model might be more appropriate. The compact space will be easier to control and theyll still have access to the most crucial notes across multiple octaves.
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Rockjam 61 Key Keyboard Piano With Lcd Display Kit
This is an excellent choice for a serious tech enthusiast. This digital keyboard, which is reasonably priced, provides a lot of digital bang for your buck: 100 instrumental voices, 100 rhythms and beats, and 50 sample tunes as well as recording and playback capabilities, making this 61-key partial keyboard a small portable band production studio.
RockJam is exactly what it says on the tin: a fantastic introductory piano for the creative and technologically minded. Obviously, no acoustic instruments are sampled here, but the sound quality is good for the money and allows beginners to not only sit and learn the piano, but also compose, produce, and experiment with sound layering. Everything you need is included in the kit: a foldable seat, a stand, a music stand, a pedal, and even headphones! Its a one-stop store for aspiring professional music producers.
This enjoyable digital piano for beginners, in our opinion, is a fantastic complement to a more professional 88-keys piano. If you have a digital piano in the spinet style or an acoustic upright piano, This keyboard is a feature-rich creative studio that is incredibly portable. However, as an only keyboard, a 61-key keyboard is not recommended for a professional piano student because it distorts the impression of dimensions.
Best Of The Best: How Did We Choose
Our lists favor instruments that offer a perfect blend of quality and playability.
Weve combed through the myriad of eligible options to pick our personal top five picks. If youve already got a budget in mind, feel free to that fit your budget.
Our articles give intuitive details for each choice. Each featured instrument has its own merits, so our top choice may not be the perfect keyboard for you.
By offering 5 choices, we cover more ground and provide extra insight to demonstrate the merits of each choice.
However, these articles are long reads, and while the extra detail will be helpful for some, you might be looking for a quick summary instead.
If thats the case, then this article is for you.
Well be covering both portable- and home-based digital pianos and keyboards from 8 price points, giving you the lowdown on why each topped our lists.
We also linked our Top 5 articles and related reviews in corresponding sections. If you find any category especially interesting, you can jump straight into our more detailed accounts to learn more.
With that out of the way, lets begin.
Here are one of the best keyboards and digital pianos you can get in 2021:
- Best Cheap Portable Keyboard
- Best Beginner Keyboard Piano
- Best Beginner Digital Piano
- Best Intermediate Digital Piano
- Best Professional Digital Piano
- Best Home Digital Piano
- Best Home Digital Piano
- Best Premium Home Digital Piano
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Beginner Keyboard Sound Quality
When youâre starting out, your first keyboard piano probably isnât going to sound as good as the ones the professionals use â after all, you wouldnât shell out hundreds on a top-end keyboard if youâre not 100 percent sure that you or your budding pianist are going to persevere beyond Frere Jacques. Because of this, keyboards for beginners and kids can often skimp on sound quality, promising hundreds of tones that are all really just endless variations of one or two basic sounds.
Our advice would be to go for keyboards with fewer, better quality tones. This will help you to achieve a better sound right from the start, inspiring the confidence to help you progress with your lessons. In our opinion, if it actually sounds like youâre playing a piano while youâre learning, youâre much more likely to stick with it!