Choosing an Instrument

When it comes to choosing a piano or keyboard, most will find the amount of choices overwhelming and possibly confusing. Keyboard? Digital piano? Acoustic piano? How do you choose?

It should be said that first and best choice for an aspiring pianist (or any pianist) is an acoustic grand piano of at least 6 feet in length. Having said that, the last thing we would expect is for all new students to go out and make a 5 figure purchase. So short of that, what are the best options?

Well, unlike 30 years ago, there is a wealth of options to choose from, and most of them are amazingly good. Short of an acoustic piano, a good digital piano is the next best choice. These are typically freestanding instruments that have 88 weighted keys (weighted meaning slightly harder to press than a springy keyboard type action), a few different sounds, and at least one pedal (but usually three, just like an acoustic piano.)

The next choice would be a home keyboard. These usually don’t have the full 88 key range, falling anywhere between 49 and 61 keys. These will work for most beginners for a year or so. They don’t typically come with stands or music racks or pedals, so those must be purchased separately. Some have weighted keys, some don’t. Weighted is always preferable. They are usually quite a bit less expensive than digital pianos, usually falling into the $200-$500 range. 

The best brands are Roland, Yamaha, and Korg. Anything from these manufacturers will be well made.

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