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The Best Digital Keyboard

Last updated on September 20, 2019

We looked at the top 10 Digital Keyboards and dug through the reviews from 55 of the most popular review sites including New York Times Wirecutter, Digital Piano Guide, Piano Dreamers, 429 Records, Guitar Junkie, Old Time Music and more. The result is a ranking of the best Digital Keyboards.

Best Digital Keyboard

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Our Picks For The Top Digital Keyboards

Show Contents
Our Take
Experts Included
Pros
Cons
  The Best Overall

Yamaha

Arius Digital Piano

Overall Take

First-Class PianoIf you love the look and sound of a grand piano, this digital keyboard is for you.

Experts Included
DWYM Electronics Experts plus BestReviews, New York Times Wirecutter, 429 Records, Engadget, Digital Piano Review Guide, Digital Piano Judge and 2 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" Action and touch sensitivity surpass other models. Ideal for all skill levels. Comes from a reputable company."
Cons
"The build quality of the piano is great, but if a dark brown doesn’t fit the decor of your room, this might be a dealbreaker for you."

Roland

Compact Digital Piano

Overall Take

Lots of ExtrasThis digital keyboard goes above and beyond by incorporating several hundred instruments on top of the traditional grand piano sound.

Experts Included
DWYM Electronics Experts plus Digital Piano Review Guide, Piano Dreamers, Best Digital Piano, Las Vegas Music. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" The unique manner in which the SuperNATURAL sound engine combines with the 128 note polyphony, creates a sound full of the natural overtones and harmonics of the acoustic instrument."
Cons
"The built-in metronome is a great tool to practice your rhythm and time-keeping. You can adjust the beat and tempo. Unfortunately, you can’t change the sound of the metronome (default: clicking sound) or the volume."

Casio

Digital Home Piano

Overall Take

Built-In SpeakersThis digital keyboard is an all-in-one system, with sound, speakers and the ability to record tracks.

Experts Included
DWYM Electronics Experts plus BestReviews, Music Advisor, Digital Piano Review Guide, Digital Piano Judge, Digital Piano Reviews, Las Vegas Music and 2 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" Re-creates the sound of a grand w/tri-sensor scaled hammer action keyboard."
Cons
"No ability to download or record songs, Does not come with a bench"
  The Best Value

Korg

Weighted Key Digital Piano

Overall Take

Best for DuosGrab a partner and create a masterpiece on this attractive digital keyboard.

Experts Included
DWYM Electronics Experts plus BestReviews, Guitar Junkie, Music Advisor, 429 Records, Piano Dreamers, Tech Signals. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" Accurately weighted keys are a pleasure to play."
Cons
"It only has the headphone jack and the pedal jack located on the rear panel, but it doesn’t have USB option."
Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, DWYM analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
17

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the digital keyboards available to purchase.
10

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

View All Product Rankings

55

Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources including: New York Times Wirecutter, Digital Piano Guide, Piano Dreamers, 429 Records, Guitar Junkie.

4,093

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including Amazon, Walmart.

Our experts reviewed the top 10 Digital Keyboards and also dug through the reviews from 55 of the most popular review sites including New York Times Wirecutter, Digital Piano Guide, Piano Dreamers, 429 Records, Guitar Junkie, Old Time Music and more. The result is a ranking of the best of the best Digital Keyboards.

DWYM is your trusted roduct review source. Our team reviews thousands of product reviews from the trusted top experts and combines them into one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in their category.

The Best Overall

Yamaha Arius Digital Piano

Our Expert Score
9.8
8 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
8.6
205 user reviews
Our Take

Want the sound of a grand piano without the size? The Yamaha Arius Digital Piano is a wise choice. Yamaha developed it based on the sound specifications of the best concert pianos across the globe. The keys have a heavier touch as with a grand piano, so those who prefer the feel of a digital keyboard may not be as interested in it.

What other experts liked
Action and touch sensitivity surpass other models. Ideal for all skill levels. Comes from a reputable company.
- BestReviews
There are 14 sounds on the Yamaha YDP-181, including grand pianos, electric pianos, harpsichords, a vibraphone, organs, strings, a choir, and a guitar.
- New York Times Wirecutter
The Graded Hammer action gives the piano the feel of an actual acoustic grand piano.
- 429 Records
The YDP-181 has Yamaha's Graded Hammer action, one of the company's midrange quality actions, which emulates an acoustic grand piano by giving lower-range keys a heavier touch than higher-range.
- Engadget
January 19, 2018 | Full review
The most impressive part of this piano is its sound quality. This 128-note polyphony piano uses a sound mechanism derived from Advanced Wave Memory recording techniques. Its 14 quality voices are simply amazing along with a good internal audio system.
- Digital Piano Review Guide
The 128-note polyphony is the highest found on digital pianos. This allows for maximum note expression when keys are pressed in rapid succession or simultaneously.
- Digital Piano Judge
There is a main grand piano sound based on powerful samples from some of Yamaha’s best and world-renowned concert grand pianos. This sound, combined with the sound engineering and tone generation, makes for an amazing experience.
- Digital Piano Reviews
The piano has good control over dynamics. Unlike acoustic pianos, with this Yamaha digital piano, it feels easier to control dynamics.
- Best Digital Piano
June 4, 2014 | Full review
What other experts didn't like
Expensive, but its high production quality and feature set make it worth the cost.
- BestReviews
The build quality of the piano is great, but if a dark brown doesn’t fit the decor of your room, this might be a dealbreaker for you.
- New York Times Wirecutter
This piano doesn’t come with actual hammers like other Yamaha models with Graded Hammer action.
- 429 Records
Our test's panelists thought the action felt good, though the amateur player found the action to be too quick.
- Engadget
January 19, 2018 | Full review
YDP-181 has a great keyboard feel, movement, and response. However, many people have reported that keys on the YDP-181 do not press down easily as a good acoustic upright piano would, i.e. the key action becomes too stiff when you...
- Digital Piano Review Guide
he YDP181 lacks a USB to host feature, requiring the addition of a MIDI to USB line to connect the device to a computer.
- Digital Piano Judge
However, we wish it was more portable as it is too heavy and would not be a good choice for people who need the piano for moving in out concerts or sessions.
- Digital Piano Reviews
Some users of the Yamaha ARIUS YDP-181 have complained that the bench is narrow, and the back panel is very thin. Others have expressed that the music rest is a bit narrow something which makes it a bit clumsy.
- Best Digital Piano
June 4, 2014 | Full review

The Best Bang For Your Buck

Korg Weighted Key Digital Piano

Our Expert Score
8.6
6 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
8.4
81 user reviews
Our Take

The Korg Weighted Key Digital Piano features Partner Mode, which makes it easy to play alongside someone else. This makes it the perfect keyboard for teachers. It's also a quieter keyboard — ideal for smaller rooms or homes where you don't want to disturb other household members.

What other experts liked
Accurately weighted keys are a pleasure to play.
- BestReviews
In addition, it has a Partner Mode, which is like a Duet Play in most digital pianos. This mode splits the piano into two equal parts with the same pitch ranges for side-by-side practice.
- Guitar Junkie
Partner Mode is a special feature that is meant to support duets or student/teacher pairs. It reprograms the keys so that the keyboard becomes split into a pair of two evenly-sized half-boards. That makes it possible for a teacher and a student to play the same notes at the same...
- Music Advisor
It comes with damper, sustain and soft pedals for more expressive play.
- 429 Records
It’s a well-built unit with metal construction and half pedal support. So there is absolutely no reason to buy a replacement to the included damper pedal unless you need all three piano pedals (3-pedal unit).
- Piano Dreamers
January 19, 2019 | Full review
There is a 1/8” headphone jack that could also double up as a Line Out. A ¼” sustain pedal jack that is used to connect to the provided sustain pedal or a 3-pedal unit that can be bought separately.
- Tech Signals
February 26, 2018 | Full review
What other experts didn't like
Keys may "clunk" and reverberate if pressed too hard.
- BestReviews
It only has the headphone jack and the pedal jack located on the rear panel, but it doesn’t have USB option.
- Guitar Junkie
Not loud enough for performance in large rooms
- Music Advisor
The B1SP has limited sound options.
- 429 Records
Unfortunately, there are no strings, vibraphone or bass sounds, which would be nice to have and most of the B1’s competitors offer that.
- Piano Dreamers
January 19, 2019 | Full review
Unfortunately, the B1SP cannot be connected to the computer or other smart devices since it does not support USB or Bluetooth.
- Tech Signals
February 26, 2018 | Full review

Overall Product Rankings

1. Yamaha Arius Digital Piano

Overall Score: 9.4
Reviews Included: 9

2. Roland Compact Digital Piano

Overall Score: 9.3
Reviews Included: 6

3. Casio Digital Home Piano

Overall Score: 9.2
Reviews Included: 10

4. Korg Weighted Key Digital Piano

Overall Score: 9.0
Reviews Included: 8

5. Yamaha Weighted Action Digital Piano

Overall Score: 8.8
Reviews Included: 9

6. Casio Privia Digital Piano

Overall Score: 8.8
Reviews Included: 10

7. Key Digital Piano

Overall Score: 8.6
Reviews Included: 8

8. Alesis Recital Beginner Piano

Overall Score: 8.6
Reviews Included: 8

9. Alesis Recital Pro Digital Keyboard

Overall Score: 8.2
Reviews Included: 6

10. Hamzer Electronic Piano

Overall Score: 8.0
Reviews Included: 4

Our Findings

Yamaha Arius Digital Piano

What We Liked: Want the sound of a grand piano without the size? The Yamaha Arius Digital Piano is a wise choice. Yamaha developed it based on the sound specifications of the best concert pianos across the globe. The keys have a heavier touch as with a grand piano, so those who prefer the feel of a digital keyboard may not be as interested in it.

Korg Weighted Key Digital Piano

Best Value

Korg B1SP 88 Weighted Key Digital Piano with Stand Three Pedal Board and Knox Bench


List Price: 0
New From: $999.99 USD In Stock
Used from: Out of Stock

What We Liked: The Korg Weighted Key Digital Piano features Partner Mode, which makes it easy to play alongside someone else. This makes it the perfect keyboard for teachers. It’s also a quieter keyboard — ideal for smaller rooms or homes where you don’t want to disturb other household members.

Roland Compact Digital Piano

Also Consider

Roland Compact 88-key Digital Piano with Built-In Speaker, contemporary black (F-140R-CB) (Electronics)


List Price: $1,249.99 USD
New From: $1,249.99 USD In Stock
Used from: Out of Stock

What We Liked: Versatility is the name of the game with the Roland Compact Digital Piano. It has the ability to simulate 305 different musical instruments in addition to a baby grand piano. Though more expensive than other models, you’ll also get the ability to record the music you create. It uses a special SuperNATURAL sound engine to recreate the depth of the music you’d get from a grand piano.

Yamaha Arius Digital Piano

What We Liked: Want the sound of a grand piano without the size? The Yamaha Arius Digital Piano is a wise choice. Yamaha developed it based on the sound specifications of the best concert pianos across the globe. The keys have a heavier touch as with a grand piano, so those who prefer the feel of a digital keyboard may not be as interested in it.

Our Digital Keyboard Buying Guide

Thanks to technology, pianos have come a long way in recent years. Grand pianos not only take up a great deal of space in a home, but they also can be almost impossible to move. A digital keyboard can give you deep, rich sound, as well as versatility that you’ll never get from a traditional piano. Best of all, you won’t have to dedicate an entire room of your house to it.

Choosing the right digital keyboard can be challenging, though, especially with so many big-name brands competing for your dollar. You can find keyboards that emulate that baby grand piano sound, as well as those that can provide instrumental sounds that come from a harp, organ or a guitar. If you’re learning or teaching others, a model that features dual play mode may be a better choice, since you can play as a duo.

It’s also important to consider the room that will house your piano. If it’s a big room and you plan to entertain large groups of friends, a piano with a built-in speaker system is likely better for your situation than a quieter keyboard. However, some households may find a slightly quieter instrument is more suitable.

One feature that’s popular with many digital keyboard buyers is the ability to record your performances. This is great for sharing on social media, but it’s especially valuable if you want to listen to your results in an effort to improve. Not all keyboards include this, and some let you record to an external hard drive, so definitely pay close attention to recording ability if it’s important to you.

Although it may not be a top consideration, the appearance of the keyboard you choose will likely be important. It will, after all, be a piece of furniture that features predominantly in whatever room you set it. You can choose between a variety of colors, but many digital keyboards have a setup similar to a traditional upright piano. Consider whether you want a deep mahogany, black or white model before you start shopping.

DWYM Fun Fact

To this day, electronic keyboards are heavily associated with the new wave style of music that began in the late ’70s. Called synthesizers, these keyboards were able to bring an innovative sound to the mainstream. In the mid-1970s, a German band called Kraftwerk introduced the sound to the world with its hit song “Autobahn.” The song wasn’t well received, with one publication pleading that we should “keep the robots out of music,” but the sound caught on. Gary Numan began experimenting with the sound in the late ’70s, releasing two hit singles that predominantly featured electronic keyboards. Soon, the music style made its way to the U.S. and was all over airwaves, dominating the radio throughout the 1980s.

The Digital Keyboard Tips and Advice

  • If you’re a fan of the traditional piano sound you’d get from a baby piano, consider the Yamaha Arius Digital Piano. The manufacturer sampled Yamaha’s most well-respected concert pianos to create an instrument that matches the tone as closely as possible. The Yamaha Arius Digital Piano is a 128-note piano, compared to the 88 notes offered by some other keyboards in its class. The Roland Compact Digital Piano also features 128 notes, as well as using a split mode to layer sounds, creating a richer experience. You can also use this feature to create original songs that combine rhythm sections and the keyboard. The Roland Compact Digital Piano uses something called a SuperNATURAL sound engine to simulate that baby grand piano sound. With the Casio Digital Home Piano, you get 256-note polyphony and tri-sensor scaled hammer action to enrich its sound to baby grand level.
  • Teachers and students will be interested in a feature called Partner Mode, available on the Korg Weighted Key Digital Piano. This feature lets you play alongside someone else. Using this feature, a teacher and student can play the same song together to allow the student to imitate and learn.
  • One common complaint about digital keyboards is that they simply feel different than a traditional piano. Manufacturers have worked hard to shrink the gap between the two experiences. The Yamaha Arius Digital Piano uses graded hammer action to simulate the way keys move on a concert grand. This feature means the lower-range keys have a heavier touch than those in a higher range. For those who are used to the lighter touch of a digital keyboard, though, this feature may be a negative, making it better suited for individuals looking for that traditional playing experience.
  • Digital pianos have long excelled over traditional pianos in one important way: They take you beyond one instrument. If you’re interested in this type of diversity, you may be more interested in the Roland Compact Digital Piano, which offers 305 tones outside of the acoustic piano, including organs, guitars, brass and synthesizers. The Casio Digital Home Piano only offers 18 choices, and the Korg Weighted Key Digital Piano has only seven.
  • It’s also important to consider how you’ll use your piano. If you’re performing for large groups in a big room, for instance, you may find that the Casio Digital Home Piano is a better choice since it comes with four powerful speakers built in. The Korg Weighted Key Digital Piano, on the other hand, is quieter, making it a better option for smaller spaces.
  • Whether you want to listen to your performances later or share them with others, the record feature is something to consider. The Yamaha Arius Digital Piano lets you record one or two tracks, then put them together to play simultaneously. The Roland Compact Digital Piano, on the other hand, only lets you record one track. The Casio Digital Home Piano not only lets you record two tracks for later playback, but you can also save them to a USB stick or a remote hard drive.
  • Although it’s designed to make music, the truth is your piano will become an important part of your décor. For that reason, it’s hard to get away from the issue of appearance. The Yamaha Arius Digital Piano looks closer to a traditional upright piano and is available in either dark brown or black. It’s also important to note that only the Yamaha Arius Digital Piano and Korg Weighted Key Digital Piano come with a bench, so you’ll face the challenge of finding one that matches if you choose one of the others.
  • Price can be a big differentiator between digital pianos. You can find a good digital piano like the Casio Digital Home Piano or Korg Weighted Key Digital Piano for less than what a baby grand piano would cost.

About The Author

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Stephanie Faris 

Stephanie Faris is a former information technology professional who spent most of her career working with computers and printers. Now a novelist and professional writer, her writings on electronics have been published on top tech sites. When she isn't writing about technology, she's often checking out the latest news on the upcoming iPhone release.