The BEST Beginner Keyboard (Or Digital Piano)

Lisa Witt  /  Articles / Sep 4

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One of the most popular questions we get at Pianote is: “What keyboard should I buy?”

The best beginner keyboard will be different for each person, but we’ll give you a head start by sharing our three favorite digital pianos today. Hopefully, this guide will make it easier for you to bring your first piano home!

First, let’s run through some of the benefits of keyboards or digital pianos and what to look for in your first keyboard or piano.

Why Buy a Keyboard or Digital Piano?

Acoustic pianos are beautiful, but keyboards are a fantastic choice for beginner and expert pianists alike.

They’re more affordable, more lightweight, and can fit in smaller spaces like apartments. If you live with other people, you can also practice with headphones without bothering them.

Many keyboards also come with nifty features like sound effects, built-in metronomes, or even teaching software. The pianos we’ll talk about today can all be connected to an app, giving you plenty of features to play with.

That all being said, there are several things you should look for when choosing your keyboard.

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Your First Digital Piano – What to Look For

There are so many digital pianos on the market, it’s hard to narrow down what’s good. Focusing on the following key features might help.

Touch Sensitivity

Ideally, find a touch-sensitive keyboard. A touch-sensitive keyboard makes it possible to play soft sounds when you play lightly and louder sounds when you play with more force.

Touch-sensitive keys also have more resistance. They require more effort to push down. This resembles a traditional acoustic piano and will help you develop strength and dexterity in your fingers.

Number of Keys

88 keys is an ideal size to buy. This is the same number of keys on a full-size acoustic piano. If you can’t find something with 88 keys, the minimum should be 61 keys.

Pro Tip: Try Before You Buy

At the end of the day, you won’t know whether an instrument is good or not unless you play it yourself.

So, visit your local music store—you can even bring your own headphones—and try out some keyboards! Pay attention to the sound and the feel of the keys. Play all over the keyboard, both the high and low registers, to hear both treble and bass quality.

Top 3 Beginner Keyboards for Beginners

Yamaha P125

Yamaha P-125

The Yamaha P-125 is an excellent beginner keyboard with fantastic sound quality. I’ve used this piano to teach and to practice, and I love that it has a clear bass sound on the lower end.

The keys on this piano also feel very nice. You can get a good dynamic range and I like the touch sensitivity.

While the features on this piano are pretty basic, it does include over 24 voices, 20 rhythms, a built-in metronome, and easy usability.

Overall, the Yamaha P-125 is a good contender with its low price point, solid features, and a 4.8/5 rating on Amazon averaged out over 800 customer ratings (at the time of this article).

Yamaha P-125: Key Specs
Dimensions (length, width, depth): 1326mm x 166mm x 295mm
Weight: 11.8kg
Number of keys: 88
Touch sensitivity: Yes
Tones: 24 voices
Rhythms: 20 built-in beats
Price: $649

Casio Privia PX-S3000

Casio Privia PX-S3000

Casio is another instantly-recognizable brand in the digital piano sphere. The Privia comes in many different models across various price points and features.

The Casio Privia PX-S3000 here packs a lot of punch with its 700 tones and 200 rhythms. However, I did find that its keys were not as responsive as the previous Yamaha, and there’s a slight side-to-side wobble in the keys.

Yet, I have to say this keyboard is a sleek and pretty one! The interface is stylish and there is a nice textured finish to the keys that was not present in the Yamaha.

One thing I didn’t realize when I filmed the video is that there are additional speakers located in a subtle spot above the keys that face the player, while the larger speakers face the audience.

This piano currently holds a 4.3/5 rating on Amazon averaged over 35 customer ratings.

Casio Privia PX-S3000: Key Specs
Dimensions (length, width, depth): 1322mm x 102mm x 232mm
Weight: 11.2kg
Number of keys: 88
Touch sensitivity: Yes
Tones: 700 built-in tones
Rhythms: 200 built-in rhythms
Price: $849

Roland FP-10

Roland FP-10

Rounding out our best beginner keyboard list is the Roland FP-10. The FP-10 is part of the FP series which has a wide range of price points and features.

While basic, the FP-10 is a solid and reliable entry-level keyboard. This instrument really shines in key feel—it has a good resistance point which requires a little more pressure. The sound in this instrument is also great and is on par with the Yamaha.

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While the FP-10 has fewer tones than the Casio, it is very affordable and, with Roland’s SuperNATURAL authentic sound, more than gets the job done. Right now, it boasts a 4.8/5 rating on Amazon over 200 customer ratings.

Roland FP-10: Key Specs
Dimensions (length, width, depth): 1284mm x 140mm x 258mm)
Weight: 12.6kg
Number of keys: 88
Touch sensitivity: Yes
Tones: 15 built-in tones
Rhythms: No built-in beats
Price: $499

Summing Up Keyboards

We’ve shown you our three favorite keyboards, and they are quite different! The best beginner keyboard for you will depend on your personal needs and tastes.

If you live in a small apartment, you may want the Roland FP-10 because it has the shortest length.

The Yamaha P-125 has a lovely sound and feel, but if you’re not sure if you’ll still be playing piano a year from now, a more affordable choice like the Roland FP-10 can work.

If you love technology and features, you may want the 700 built-in tones offered by the Casio Privia PX-S3000. But if you’d rather play classical music, you don’t need fancy features. Learning how to use all the features of a complex instrument also takes time.

These instruments can also be paired with optional accessories (like stands) and apps. You might want to check out the prices and availability of these accessories too if you see yourself buying them in the future.

If you’d like more piano shopping advice, we have you covered. We have other posts on choosing your dream piano, such as comparing cheap vs. expensive pianos.

Otherwise, happy shopping!

*This article contains affiliate links, which means we might earn a small commission from the product seller if you make a purchase. For more info, check out our privacy page.

Lisa Witt has been teaching piano for 19 years and in that time has helped hundreds of students learn to play the songs they love. Lisa received classical piano training through the Royal Conservatory of Music, but she has since embraced popular music and playing by ear in order to accompany herself and others.

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