For me, my Digital Piano passion gives me the opportunity to release my inner creativity. However, as with any product on the market, I have always strongly suggested to my friends that they read various digital piano reviews before settling on a model to buy. We want to simplify this process as much as possible for you – here’s everything you need to know if you’re looking to buy a new digital piano.
5 Best Digital Pianos of 2017 Reviewed
We’ve reviewed quite a large number of digital pianos on our site, and comparing them all can get confusing fast. To make things easier, we’ve put our picks for the best 5 digital pianos of 2017 below. Check out the comparison chart for an at-a-glance comparison of all 5, and read on for a more detailed look into each individual model.
|Electric Guitar||Our Rating||Keys||Price||Review Link|
|Yamaha YPG-235||9.1||76||$$$||Read Our Full Review|
|Casio SA76||8.7||44||$||Read Our Full Review|
|Yamaha P115||8.6||88||$$$$||Read Our Full Review|
|Yamaha PSRE253||8.4||61||$$$||Read Our Full Review|
|Williams Allegro 2||8.3||88||$$||Read Our Full Review|
1. Yamaha YPG-235
The Yamaha YPG-235 is hands down one of the best digital piano options out there. It boasts absolutely stellar sound reproduction, fantastic integrated speakers, and wonderful key movement, all while remaining relatively light and portable.
This model truly shines because it’s so versatile – it’s equally valuable in the hands of beginner or veteran pianists, thanks to its extensive range of features and voices on top of a solid training suite from Yamaha.
Many digital pianos out there lack connectivity options – this one doesn’t. You have hookups for your headphones, external speakers, your computer, and more. Basically, Yamaha made sure all of the necessities are covered with the YPG-235 model.
2. Casio SA76
The Casio SA76 is one of the most affordable keyboards out there, and the single most portable digital piano we’ve had our hands on. The “mini” unit’s 44 key limit may be a deal-breaker for some, but if you’re looking for portability without sacrificing too many features, the SA76 is perfect for you.
For such a small keyboard, this Casio comes with a dizzying array of pre-set tunes, rhythms, and voices for you to play around with. It’s definitely not the best buy if you’re looking for a primary keyboard to use, are a veteran pianist, or plan on taking formal piano lessons, but it’s a fantastic option if you’re a hobby player, or need an ultra portable setup to whisk around with you as needed.
3. Yamaha P115
The Yamaha P115 definitely qualifies as an “intermediate” or even advanced keyboard model. Pair it with a nice set of external speakers, and it’s more than good enough to serve as a primary piano for just about any pianist out there.
We’re big fans of the full-weighted keys that Yamaha opted to go with for the P115 – they did an excellent job, and it really feels like you’re playing a traditional piano. It can be hard to get weighted keys “right,” but Yamaha knows what they’re doing. On top of the weighted keys, the sound reproduction of this P115 model is enough to satisfy even the biggest digital piano critics out there. It’s “grand” in every sense of the word.
If you’re looking for a solid performance-grade digital piano, the Yamaha P115 will serve you quite well. The various features and functionality may be a bit overwhelming for more novice pianists, however.
4. Yamaha PSRE253
Branded specifically as a portable keyboard, the Yamaha PSRE253 strikes a healthy balance between portability and functionality with its 61 key layout and feature-rich sound offerings. This unit has a medley of voices and rhythms that gives much more expensive models a run for their money, but is light and compact enough to serve as a truly portable keyboard.
If you’re looking for a portable digital piano that’s a step above the cheaper, smaller, and more “toy-like” offerings you can find out there, the PSRE253 is a safe bet. You won’t be disappointed by the sound quality or key movement; two things we know Yamaha always delivers on.
5. Williams Allegro 2
The Williams Allegro 2 is perfect for any beginner or intermediate pianist looking for a large, well-equipped keyboard. With 88 hammer action, semi-weighted keys, this model feels much closer to a “true” piano than most other models within this price range do.
While a slight lack of peripheral equipment support and some minor layout issues may dissuade some from the Allegro 2, the bottom line is that it’s a competitively-priced alternative to similar Yamaha and Casio models. Beginner and intermediate players alike will truly enjoy the look, feel, and sound of the Williams Allegro 2 model.
Buying A Digital Piano
There are tons of digital pianos out there – each model differs in quality, and each piano will have a different selection of keys and offer different levels of sound quality. Determining which Digital Piano to purchase will depend on your individual circumstances, and what you expect to use it for. For example, if you are looking to begin playing professionally around the country, then I would always advise to opt for a professional-quality Digital Piano. Likewise, if you are simply looking to learn the piano, there’s no need to spend more than a few hundred dollars on a decent Digital Piano that will last for years to come as each Digital Piano has it’s own merits.
If your head is already spinning, check out this awesome video by MusicRadar to get a good look at what you can expect from any decent digital piano:
For me, choosing the right digital piano is all about understand your own needs. Who will the digital piano be for? Here’s some quick pointers on what to consider:
- For Digital Piano Beginners; Start with a small and portable digital piano that can easily be transported. You don’t need to worry about have an extensive range of keys or sound options, as it will merely serve as a basis to learn the fundamentals. Pick a quality brand such as Casio that will be capable of withstanding regular use.
- For Digital Piano Intermediates; Consider opting for a more advanced digital piano – that could possibly have a diverse range of music tones, such as bass and acoustic sounds. It may also be wise to invest in a digital piano model that has USB functionality, and has headphone ports to allow for better sound output.
- For Digital Piano Experts; If you feel that you have mastered playing the piano, it may be time to invest in an expensive piano such as the Casio PX850. More expensive digital pianos boast a larger selection of keys, better quality sound notes, advanced technology and great aesthetic looks.
Mini Buyer’s Guide
With so many Digital Pianos available on the market, it’s imperative that you educate yourself on some of the key features to look out for. In my digital piano reviews, I aim to provide you with key sets of information that will help you to purchase the best digital piano for your needs. While key factors such as affordability and build quality are important, there are also numerous other factors that should be considered. Read below to learn about the different features that are a must-have for any digital piano.
- Number of Keys; Always opt for a digital piano that has a minimum of 60-keys. As you begin to improve your playing ability, you will want to start tackling more difficult songs. Some of the entry-level digital pianos only have a small amount of keys, which simply isn’t sufficient for intermediates and expert players. As such, opt for a model which is going to last you for years to come.
- Brand Name; Good digital brands such as Casio and Yamaha are solid choices. You’ll know that you’re getting a high-quality piano that usually has the latest technology included. With some of the lesser known brands, you’ll often get low quality sound production and find that they lack key features such as USB support and live-recording modes.
- Maximum Polyphony; This concept is quite simple, but an equally important one to consider. Polyphony refers to the amount of notes that a digital piano can produce at any one single time. For advanced songs, you’ll need a model which is capable of emitting numerous different notes to ensure you’re able to play the song perfectly.
- On-Board Sound Cards; One of the main reasons for buying a high-grade digital pianos is having the ability to use headphones. Unfortunately, many models don’t support expensive headphones, and as such, you’ll be forced to use low-quality headphones that often suppress the finer sounds. Many of the Casio and Yamaha models have a high-quality sound card built in, so you’ll only need to worry if you’re considering a lesser known brand.
- Number of Tones & Sounds; Again, similarly to the number of keys, you’ll want a model which allows you to use multiple tones and sounds to replicate some of the more difficult songs to play. Luckily, many of the newer, more advanced models allow you to easily download new tones and sounds on the fly.
- Recording Features; If you are going to be recording your own songs, always opt for a model which has sound recording built in. Some models will have their own internal hard-drives, while others will allow you to simply connect an external hard-drive to the piano. You should check for the recording quality too, as some models will record at a lower bitrate than others.
These are perhaps the five most important factors to consider when you’re looking to purchase the best digital piano for your needs. Luckily, my digital piano reviews compare all of the above features and more – giving you a full 360-degree angle on each model. If you’re not entirely sure about which model is best for you, feel free to use the Contact Me page to ask me a question, or simply leave a comment on the review page.
To read my full Digital Piano Buying Guide, please visit this page: http://www.theboxtigermusic.com/digital-piano-reviews/buying-guide/
You should always keep cost in mind, and have a pre-set budget. Digital Pianos range in value from $100 to in excess of $5,000, and as such, determining what your budget is right from the start will be beneficial. Digital Pianos are much like any other product – the more you spend, the better quality you will usually get. As you move up in price, you’ll get access to more playing keys, better sound quality, better computer software and cheaper ongoing maintenance. Stick the big brands and maintenance parts will typically be easier to come across. Some Digital Pianos also come with in-built cooling facilities, which is great for keeping the room temperature low.
Always keep in mind just how convenient a particular Digital Piano model is going to be for you, your home and your lifestyle. Many Digital Pianos are extremely large in size, and you should always keep this in mind. The majority of the cheaper models are portable, and will fit into smaller rooms quite snugly. In addition to this, consider the total weight of the piano. If you are going to be taking your Digital Piano with you around the country, you will need a model that is lightweight and portable.
Many Digital Pianos are only capable of producing sounds at a specific volume or sound level. However, if you are an advanced piano player, or are looking to take up advanced playing, you will need to consider just how versatile the models are. Some of the more advanced Digital Pianos will have headphone ports, and other models will allow you to manipulate the sound levels depending on your circumstances and environment.
Digital Pianos are great because they allow you to differentiate between different sounds. You can opt for the traditional sound of a piano, or perhaps download additional plugins that will allow you to play sounds that resemble other instruments. Again, sound options should factor into your budget, as well as your individual needs. For me, being able to switch between different sounds on my Digital Piano is perfect – as it allows me to really capture the depth of a song without having to play additional instruments.
As you learn to appreciate your Digital Piano, and as you begin to explore more advanced techniques, you’ll most likely want to hook your piano up to your computer and/or laptop. As such, always try and opt for a model which comes with a USB or MIDI connection slot. These slots can be used to connect the Digital Piano to other instruments, or to your Laptop; where you can then manipulate the piano through software.