With digital pianos, you will most likely get the option to have it delivered and assembled for an extra charge or delivered boxed for you to build yourself. The thought of building a piano can send some people into a mild panic attack, but don't worry, it's really not that difficult.
Digital pianos typically arrive in one box - usually, these take two people to lift. Now, the only part you actually need to put together is the stand for the piano section to sit on, and if you have ever put together flat-packed furniture, you'll be fine with this. However, we recommend having a second person help you, as lifting the top onto the stand can be awkward.
For budding pianists looking to get to grips with the keys, there are plenty of digital instruments on the market that come in well under the $/500 mark. This means you can test the water and see if this is the instrument for you without shelling out thousands. We would, however, stick to big-name brands at this price point, as this will ensure you get a piano of a certain quality. Yamaha, Casio, Roland and Kawai, all make exceptional entry-level pianos at this price.
For those who are a little more advanced, want a furniture style instrument, and would prefer the convenience of digital, you are looking at $/1,500+. At this price point, pianos typically come with incredibly authentic key actions, very sophisticated speaker systems, and even look just like the real thing.
Now, that leads us on to acoustic pianos. Unfortunately, this is where the prices can get out of hand, with some pianos costing as much as a brand new Ford Focus. That said, it doesn't have to cost that much. Although it does depend on spec, pianos such as the Yamaha B1 will set you back around $5,000/3,000. On average, if you are looking for a reasonable spec acoustic piano, you'll be looking around $/10,000, with high-end models from the likes of C. Bechstein costing upwards of $/30,000.
As an instrument, the humble piano is in a rather unique situation, with most of the industry's heavy-hitters remaining the same for over a century. As a result, there's a rich history to delve into with certain brands covering every aspect of the piano from acoustic to digital, uprights to grand pianos. Of course, the piano brand you gravitate towards really depends on what sound and feel you are looking for, with every manufacturer offering its own characteristics. So, with that said, what are some of the names to look out for
Yamaha\\nLet's start with Yamaha. This Japanese musical instrument titan is well known for far more than just pianos, with high-quality guitars, studio equipment and even motorcycles among their incredibly varied catalogue. The first Yamaha piano can be traced as far back as 1900 and was built by Torakusu Yamaha, and they are still producing top-quality pianos today. Yamaha are assembling both digital and acoustic pianos right now, with a variety of shapes and sizes available.
Kawai \\nFrom one Japanese builder to the next, Kawai started producing pianos around 1927 and went on to be very respected in their field. Like Yamaha, Kawai are producers of both acoustic and digital instruments, with their Shigeru Kawai concert grand being one of the best sounding pianos on the market. Kawai may not be a household name like Yamaha, but they are most certainly worth your time.
Roland \\nIf you are looking for a purely digital option, then one of the world leaders of hi-tech pianos - and synths for that matter - are Roland. They may be a relative newcomer in the world of piano - although that said, they did take on the seemingly impossible task of creating a digital piano way back in 1972! Roland has used the lessons learned from decades of creating some of the best electronic instruments in history, such as the Juno-106 and iconic TB-303 and TR-808, to fully load their prized digital pianos with user-friendly features.
Steinway & Sons\\nNo, this isn't a local accounting firm, Steinway & Sons are another producer of top-tier acoustic pianos. Like C Bechstein, Steinway & Son also started making pianos back in 1853 and although the founder was indeed German, like their contemporaries, they manufactured their exquisite instruments in Manhattan. We feature the very popular Steinway & Sons K-52 model in our guide to the best acoustic pianos, which was introduced way back in 1903, and houses a larger soundboard than many grand pianos, resulting in a more resonant voice.
There's no denying that the piano has seen a resurgence in popularity in recent years - and we can't help but wonder if that has something to do with just how accessible the instrument has become. As we see vast improvements in technology - both in the instrument itself and online lessons - the barrier for entry is now much lower, with affordable and cost-effective options readily available in every piano category. Below we've listed what we believe are the best pianos out there right now, featuring both acoustic and digital pianos, as well as stage and slimline options from the best piano brands in the world.
It should be stated that every piano player is different - each individual pianist requires something different from their instrument. So, when it comes to finding the best piano for you, it's worth keeping a few things in mind. Think about your current playing experience, the sounds you like to hear and of course, the space available in your house.
For those seeking a digital upright, we have to recommend the Yamaha Clavinova CLP-775 (opens in new tab). We feel this stunning piano is simply one of the best-sounding, best-playing instruments on the market right now. If space is an issue, then it's worth checking out the slimline digital pianos on this list, and our go-to has to be the Casio Privia PX-770 (opens in new tab). For a portable option, then you can't go wrong with the Yamaha P-45 (opens in new tab).
We all know pianos aren't exactly small, and the sheer size of the instrument can be a stumbling block for many new players. However, if you find yourself longing to play the piano, but don't have space for a full-sized upright, then the YPD range is for you.
In our opinion, the Yamaha Arius YDP-145 is one of the best digital pianos for beginners and offers the most bang for your buck in the Arius range. Designed to fit in almost any home, this stylish instrument offers the full piano experience in a far more compact size. Boasting all 88 notes, weighted keys and three pedals, there is no need to compromise functionality.
The Casio Privia PX770 may be the most affordable slimline pianos in this guide, but trust us, it can certainly hang with the big boys. If you're a beginner looking to dip your toe into the water of piano, then this is easily one of the best pianos on the market for you. With its relatively affordable price point, it won't break the bank, while its small stature isn't too imposing in a small bedroom.
As with most Roland pianos, the RP701 is available in four finishes - Dark Rosewood, Contemporary Black, Light Oak and White - so you'll be able to get a piano that perfectly matches your room's décor.
The term Clavinova is synonymous with digital pianos, to the point where some people use it as a blanket term to describe all digital pianos. Well, in fact, it's a series of Yamaha instruments. It is still one of their most popular lines of digital pianos since it debuted in 1983 - although the technology has changed significantly since then!
The new 700 series might just be the most technologically advanced, best sounding, and best playing pianos Yamaha has ever put out, and that's why it tops our list of digital uprights. The Yamaha GrandTouch key action with Linear Graded Hammer emulation - modelled after the CFX grand piano - offers a truly authentic feel and a gratifying playing experience - and one we absolutely love.
Yamaha has also made marked improvements to the audio quality as well as the keys. Now sporting a redesigned speaker system, for added resonance, it comes loaded with newly re-recorded samples of the CFX grand, resulting in, frankly, the best sounding digital piano Yamaha has ever released, and easily one of the best pianos on the market.
The name Casio conjures up images of calculator watches and beginner keyboards for most people, but that would certainly change if they played the Casio GP-310 Grand Hybrid. This groundbreaking piano really does offer the best of both worlds. It manages to combine the functionality of a digital piano with the real hammers of an acoustic upright.
With Kawai having 90 years of experience building first-rate acoustic pianos - and being one of the best piano brands in the world - it's safe to assume they know a thing or two about what should be replicated in the digital realm. The popular CN series certainly proves this with an authentic feeling touch, warm, rich tone, and a range of modern features.
When it comes to an affordable, lightweight, and dependable stage piano, the Yamaha P-45 has to be one of the best pianos out there. Popular among beginners looking for an unobtrusive, cost-effective option. The P-45 delivers ten highly usable voices, and the two in-built speakers do a reasonable job at reproducing them.
The Nord Piano 4 comes with a wide range of solid, tried and tested acoustic and electric pianos on board, the sound of which are in a different league compared to the other stage pianos on this list - mind you, the price is significantly higher as well. Nevertheless, we feel the nicely balanced, grand weighted action is playable for pianos and synth sounds alike. In addition, there are some excellent vintage-style effects onboard, including phasers/flanger/chorus, reverb, delay, EQ and amp emulation.
A solitary pair of audio outputs means you can't route the synth section to its own outputs for independent processing. These are minor grievances, considering this is one of the best sounding and playing stage pianos on the market. 59ce067264