13 BEST Digital Pianos & Keyboard Pianos 2020: Top Picks & Reviews
Nord Stage 3
Table of Contents
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Every pianist needs their own instrument. New players, returning players, and even professionals go through a time where they need to shop for a new piano or keyboard. With so many keyboards in the market, it can be hard to decide which one is the right one for you.
Buying a keyboard comes with a lot of aspects to consider, including your skill level, purpose, price, durability, and features.
In this article, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best piano keyboards in 2020, so you won’t have a hard time finding the most fitting one for you.
Top 3 Piano Keyboards
First off, let’s go through my top three picks. These keyboards win in terms of the feel, the sounds, the durability, value, and price. Anytime anyone asks me to recommend keyboards, these are my go-to’s.
Compare BEST Digital Pianos & Keyboard Pianos
✔3 types of touch sensitivity
✔Multi-dimensional Morphing Air Sound Source
✔Available in 88-key, 76-key, and 61-key variations
✔Pressure-sensitive, weighted keyboard with action hammer system
✔88 Semi-weighted keys with touch response
✔Built-in 20W speakers
✔Progressive Harmonic Imaging
✔88-note piano sampling
✔Ivory touch keytops
✔Simulated Ivory and Ebony keytops
✔3 Types of touch sensitivity and the option to turn it off
✔88 fully weighted keys
✔Realistic simulated Ivory and Ebony keytops
✔3 different touch settings
✔30 voices and instruments
✔9 touch sensitivity settings
✔Up to 240-key polyphony
✔88-key digital piano with wooden keys
✔Triple-sensor pressure point simulation
✔88 weighted keys
✔5 types of touch sensitivity
✔AWM Stereo sampling
✔Capable of 64-note polyphony
Table of Contents
13 BEST Digital Pianos & Keyboard Pianos
1. Casio PX-160
The Casio PX-160 ticks all the boxes of a fantastic digital piano. Whether you are someone who prefers to stay at home and record in a studio or explore the world as a touring musician, this one tops the charts.
The PX-160 is compact and lightweight compared to other digital pianos. It has 88 weighted keys that give off a natural feel. A beginner will find delight in its cool teaching features and a durable build that is sure to last for all the years to come.
- 3 types of touch sensitivity
- Multi-dimensional Morphing Air Sound Source
- 126-note Polyphony
- 18 Instrument sounds including 5 different pianos
- 60 preset piano songs
- Split, dual and duo modes
- Lesson functions
- 2-track MIDI recorder
- Metronome, transpose, fine-tuning and octave-shift functions
- USB connectivity
- 2 Headphone jacks, line out and sustain pedal jack
2. Nord Stage 3
This digital keyboard is an investment. The Nord Stage 3 is not just a digital keyboard but a hybrid between one and a synthesizer. Because of its incredible amount of effects and a wide range of customization options, it is a popular choice among professional pianists.
This unit is feature-rich, with plenty of presets, effects, and functions that you can use not just in live shows but also in studio music production. The Nord Stage 3 makes it easy to swap presets, upload samples, and fiddle with effects and functions via USB connection and the handy Nord Sound Manager software that comes with your purchase.
- Available in 88-key, 76-key, and 61-key variations
- Pressure-sensitive, weighted keyboard with action hammer system
- Two OLED screens for easy navigation
- 120-note polyphony
- 2GB dedicated memory for piano mode
- Lots of filters and layer functions
- Piano-synthesizer hybrid
- Effects such as tremolo, ring modulator, auto-pan, wah-wah, auto-wah 1 and 2, flanger, vibe, 2 frasers and, 2 choirs
- JC, Twin, and small loudspeaker simulation
- USB input, MIDI ins and outs, 1 audio input, 4 audio outputs, and one headphone output
- Control features using modulation wheel and pitch bend stick
3. Alesis Recital
If you are looking for something cheap but amazing, you should check out Teenage Engineering’s PO-12. This drum machine (yes, it is, in fact, a drum machine), despite being cheap and pocket-sized, can pitch quite a punch.
Do not let its size fool you. The PO-12 has 16 different drum sounds, 16 different drum effects, built-in speakers, an LED screen, and features that allow you to create a whole song on-the-go.
The PO-12 does not seem much with its cryptic symbols that can only be deciphered through the use of manuals and generally small interface. However, the sound quality of this drum machine can rival the quality of others that are four times its price. If you are not too excited about the way this drum machine looks, there are cases sold for Pocket Operators in the market.
The PO-12 can handle 60BPM up to a whopping 240 BPM and has a surprisingly long battery life that can last up to two years. The parameter lock feature and synth functions are incredible considering how cheap this thing is. Additionally, you can connect it to phones, laptops, and even other electronic instruments, although some users claim that there are some distortion issues when the PO-12 is connected to too many instruments.
Some of the programmed sounds can seem a bit distorted at first, however, users have found that it can easily be solved with a few tweaks.
- Produces 16 different drum sounds, such as drums, percussions, hi-hats, cowbells and more
- Offers 16 built-in effects including distortion, delay, stutter, and vibrato
- Has a 16-step sequencer and multiplier that allows you to create a whole song on-the-go
- Allows you to fine-tune effects around the speed of 60BPM to 240 BPM in real-time
- Has a jam-sync function that you can use to connect with other Pocket Operators
- Includes parameter locks
- Has a built-in speaker
- Comes with a folding stand
Best Piano for Beginners
Now that we are done with the top three of this list, let us move on to more specific suggestions. This particular section focuses on digital keyboards created with beginners in mind. The pianos suggested here have some of the best learning features that entry-level pianists can use for their lessons.
4. Kawai CE220
This digital piano from Kawai is pretty huge and heavy. You’ll have a hard time bringing this to gigs and live performances. However, if you are a beginner looking for a great digital piano to learn, then this is one of the best out there.
The piano has fantastic teaching functions, such as a dual or split keyboard, built-in metronomes, and other useful tools that you can use when learning. While many advanced players are not very pleased with the fact that the metronome cannot handle complicated time signatures, most beginners are content with its features.
- Wooden, realistic weighted keys with touch sensitivity and hammer action
- 192-note polyphony
- Progressive Harmonic Imaging
- 88-note piano sampling
- A built-in 40-watt stereo speaker system
- USB connection
- Includes 3-character LED screen
- Keyboard functions such as Split and Dual
- Virtual Voicing feature
- Beautiful satin black finish
5. Kawai ES8
Albeit a bit bulky and heavy, the ES8 from Kawai is considered a portable gigging piano. However, there is a reason why this piano is heavy. It’s one of the few digital pianos with built in-speakers and synthetic ivory key surface complete with hammer action. The keys are also touch-sensitive and respond well to how soft or hard you play.
With the ES8, you’ll get an extremely realistic feel of playing an acoustic piano that you won’t have any problems transferring to a concert piano if need be.
The unit does not come with a lot of accessories. You will need to purchase a travel bag or case to make sure that it’s safe during transport. However, it does come with a high-quality pedal. The unit is durable and the quality is obvious just by looking at its elegant finish.
- Fully-weighted keyboard
- Ivory touch keytops
- Hammer action (Responsive Hammer III) with Let-Off
- 5 types of touch sensitivity
- 16×2-character LCD screen
- Harmonic Imaging XL
- 256-note polyphony
- 34 instrument sounds, 11 sound effects, and 6 reverb types
- Has a “Virtual Technician” feature, which allows you to control many aspects of the piano
- 2-track MIDI recorder
- Built-in WAV and MP3 format audio recorder
- Includes around 100 rhythms
- Includes useful features, such as a metronome, transpose, and fine-tuning
- Has 2 built-in 15W speakers
- Plenty of connecting option such as MIDI In and outs, USB connectors, headphone jacks, line ins and outs, and sustain pedal jacks
Best Upright Piano
Whether you are looking for an upright piano for your dainty parlor or you simply like the elegance it exudes, this section is for you. We will go through several high-quality upright pianos that exude all the elegance of an acoustic piano and with the features of a digital piano.
6. Casio Privia PX-870
If you’re looking for a console digital piano that’s compact and space-saving, then the Casio Privia PX-870 might just be the one you are looking for. Albeit heavy, this piano is sleek and compact. It looks elegant with its beautiful ebony or ivory finish that has a nice, wooden texture. It’s sure to look gorgeous in any home setting.
Aside from a decent amount of play modes, there are also plenty of effects to experiment with, such as lid simulators that simulate the sound produced when a grand piano’s lid is open, half-open, or closed. There’s also the hall simulator, which simulates the sound you would make if you were playing in some of the world’s most famous halls.
- 88-key fully weighted keyboard with Tri-Sensor Scaled Hammer Action II
- Simulated Ivory and Ebony keytops
- 3 Types of touch sensitivity and the option to turn it off
- Multi-Dimensional Morphing AiR Sound Source
- 256-note polyphony
- 19 pre-installed instrument sounds
- Settings to simulate an acoustic piano
- Includes 60 preset songs
- Allows you to play in different modes including Split, Dual, and Duo
- Has lesson functions
- Has concert play features
- Built-in 2-track MIDI recorder and USB audio recorder
- Includes useful features, such as metronome, transpose, fine-tuning, and octave shift
- 2 built-in 20w speakers
- USB connections, headphone jacks, and pedal connectors
7. Yamaha YDP-184
Heavy-duty, and classy, this digital console piano is a great addition to your home’s parlor. Unfortunately, it’s pretty bulky and not very portable. The elegant wood grain finish and simulated ebony and ivory keys look beautiful though. Its controls are hidden in a panel on the left side of the piano.
Students and teachers alike will find joy in playing this piano with its teaching and playing functions, such as transposition, metronome, scale tuning. The controls are also pretty straightforward, so even if you are a beginner, you certainly won’t get lost navigating through this digital piano.
- 88 fully weighted keys
- Realistic simulated Ivory and Ebony keytops
- 5 types of touch sensitivity
- Simulates some acoustic elements, such as damper, string, key off-resonance, and smooth release
- An incredible 256-note polyphony
- 24 Instrument sounds
- 50 Additional piano sounds and 14 pre-installed demo songs
- Includes dual, split and duo play modes
- Has lesson functions
- Includes a 16-track MIDI recorder
- Includes a digital metronome, transpose, and fine-tuning functions
8. Korg LP380
This digital piano may be heavy but the design is slim and compact which makes it perfect for smaller homes and apartments. The Korg LP380 comes with a stand with 3 pedals for sustain, soft, and sostenuto functions. It also comes with a wooden piano cover to keep your unit dust-free and safe from UV exposure. This unit is a piano that’s built to last for many years.
While a line-in connection isn’t available for this unit, students will still find this piano a delight to use due to its built-in metronome and accented metronome.
- 88 weighted keys with Real Weighted Hammer Action 3 technology
- 3 different touch settings
- 30 voices and instruments
- Effects, such as reverb, brilliance, and chorus
- Includes normal and accented metronome
- Includes 30 demo songs
- Includes a stand
Best Portable Piano Keyboard
Whether you’re a gigging musician looking for a new piano to bring to your performances or just someone who travels a lot but still wants to make music, this section here is for you. Here, we’ll go through some of the easiest digital pianos to bring along that also have amazing sound quality.
9. Korg Grandstage 88
If you’re looking for a durable, sleek-looking digital piano that would sit perfectly in your home, then the Korg Grandstage 88 might be a good fit for you. This digital piano is not just for show however, it also has a durable build and an incredible sound quality. Furthermore, while the sound library is unfortunately not expandable, the Korg Grandstage still boasts an incredible 500 tone presets.
The Korg Grandstage does not have a lot of options when it comes to editing samples either but it does have some teaching features such as a split keyboard. The controls are also pretty straightforward and allow for easy navigation even while you’re playing because of the pitch and mod wheels.
- 88 fully weighted keys with Real Weighted Hammer Action 3
- 9 touch sensitivity settings
- Up to 240-key polyphony
- 500 different tone presets
- Split and Layer modes
- Reverb, Delay, Master EQ, and section-specific effects included
10. Kawai MP11SE
The price tag for the Kawai MP11SE is high, but that is because it functions as a synthesizer as well, making it an ideal piano for traveling musicians. It has several effects and features yet portable and easy to bring to live performances.
Aside from its synth functions, this digital piano is also great for live performances because of ease of navigation on its features and effects. The backlit LCD screen also contributes well to its ease.
- 88-key digital piano with wooden keys
- Triple-sensor pressure point simulation
- IvoryTouch keys
- Includes 40 sounds with Harmonic Imaging XL technology
- Up to 208 setup memory slots
- Capable of 256-note polyphony
- Plenty of effects such as amp simulator and DSP
- Allows for several recording functions such as WAV, MP3 and MIDI
- Allows playback with loop
- Includes backlit LCD screen
- Built-in metronome
- Has pitch bend and modulation wheels
11. Roland RD-2000
For pianists who are familiar with a workstation keyboard, the Roland RD-2000 is one of the best gigging pianos you can get in the market today. While the price of this piano is a bit steep, it has an outstanding amount of effects, features, functions, and over 1,100 preset tones. This digital piano comes with 2 of Roland’s high-quality sound engines: V-Piano Technology and SuperNATURAL Piano.
The Roland RD-2000 is a little bit heavy for a portable piano and does not have built-in speakers, so you will either need an external speaker or headphones. The display is also a bit small for some users. Fortunately, the modulation wheels make it easier to navigate through functions.
- PHA-50 Hybrid wood/plastic action keys with escapement feature
- 88 weighted keys
- 5 types of touch sensitivity
- Has 2 independent sound engines: V-Piano Technology and SuperNATURAL Piano
- Has a virtual tonewheel organ and PCM Sound Generator
- 128-note polyphony on SuperNATURAL Piano
- Unlimited polyphony for V-Piano
- Over 1,100 preset tones
- 8 different modes including split and layer
- Has 9 types of reverb with 42 presets, 17 types of chorus with 88 presets, 48 types of inserting effect with 267 presets, and 5 brands of Master EQ
- Includes 9 sliders, 8 knobs, a pitch bend, and 2 modulation wheels
Best Piano Keyboard for the Money
Even if you do not have a huge budget for your next instrument, there is still something here for you. I have gathered some of the best digital pianos that you can buy at an affordable price. Despite the cheap price tag, however, these pianos still pack quite a punch when it comes to specifications and features.
12. Yamaha P-45
Here is a piano that would satisfy beginners and intermediate pianists. Although there is not a lot of variety when it comes to its pre-installed sound effects, the ones that are included should be enough for those who are just starting. The Yamaha P-45 also comes with built-in 6W speakers.
The lack of variation in instrument sounds might deter professional pianists from choosing this piano. However, the functions included, such as a metronome, transpose, and fine-tuning are all perfect for beginners and intermediate pianists.
One other thing you might have an issue with is the lack of a built-in recorder. Still, this compact and lightweight instrument is fairly versatile and easy to travel around with. The keys are fully-weighted, which makes the transition to acoustic pianos easy. They’re also velocity-sensitive and respond realistically to how hard or soft you play. The controls are ideal for beginners because there aren’t a lot and the ones on the instrument are simple to use.
- 88 fully weighted keys with hammer action
- 4 types of touch sensitivity (Fixed, Soft, Medium and Hard)
- AWM Stereo sampling
- Capable of 64-note polyphony
- Includes 10 instrument sounds, 10 preset piano songs, and 10 demo songs
- Capable of duo and dual modes
- Includes functions such as metronome, transpose and fine-tuning
- Has 2 built-in 6W speakers
13. Yamaha DGX-660
This digital piano comes as a surprise not just to me but to many other pianists looking for an incredible instrument. For its affordable price, the Yamaha DGX-660 has over 554 built-in sounds, 205 styles to play around, and 100 preset songs. The functions and customization options on this one are simply incredible!
Yamaha DGX-660 lives up to its brand and is built like a tank. However, despite being categorized as a “portable” piano, this digital piano is pretty bulky and heavy. It comes with a stand.
The setup for this piano is pretty easy and straightforward though, so at least you would not find it a hassle to get it up and running.
Another incredible feature of this piano is its lesson functions: The Yamaha Education Suite. This truly makes it an affordable instrument for pianists of all skill levels.
- 88 fully-weighted keys with hammer action
- 4 types of touch sensitivity
- 320 x 240 LCD Screen for easy navigation
- Pure CF Sound Engine
- 192-note polyphony
- Includes 554 built-in sounds
- Allows you to play in 205 styles such as multi-finger, full keyboard, and AI fingered
- Comes with 100 preset songs
- Allows for split and dual modes
- Comes with 41 reverb types, 44 chorus types 26 harmony types. 237 DSP types and 5 types of Master EQ
- Built-in lesson functions through Yamaha Education Suite
- Comes with a 6-track MIDI recorder and a USB audio recorder
- Comes with functions such as metronome, transpose and fine-tuning
- 2 Built-in 6W speakers
That does it for our list of the 13 Best Digital Pianos and Keyboards. Hopefully, I was able to help you find your next instrument!