In the world of digital pianos, you'll find you
have plenty of options, but if you're looking for accurate piano sound, you'll
find just a few make the grade.
Who Makes Them?
While the first names that pop into you head when you think pianos are likely
Steinway, Bluthner, or Bechstein; it's important to remember what makes a
digital piano different from it's counterpart.
Remember that a digital piano uses circuit boards and speakers to reproduce
sound rather than hammers, strings, and acoustics.
So it's probalby not surprising that some of the top names in digital pianos
hail from the electronics makers like Casio and Yamaha rather than the Steinways
of the world.
Best Digital Piano
You'll find plenty of debate among piano purists about which digital piano is
Some will say the best digital piano is the one you don't buy (it's best to
ignore the cynics) or that you should get a Steinway... clearly they missed the
"digital" part of "best digital piano..." Steinway doesn't make them.
While the best selling digital pianos are the
Casio PX-120 and
Yamaha YPG-535, you're not going to find anyone confusing them with concert
quality performances anytime soon.
So what are you contenders for the best of the best?
Here are my top three contenders:
Kurzweil Mark 112i -
Kurzweil digital pianos aren't particularly easy to find nor are they cheap.
However, if it's quality you want, then you'd be hard pressed to do better than
a Kurzweil. The Mark 112i is a Digital Mini Grand (and looks like a grand piano)
It has a Boston-style fallboard and an 88-note weighted keyboard with a three
degree tilt, like what you'd expect to find in a concert grand piano. Since it's
a digital piano, it can do more than sound like a piano and has 325 different
user selectable sounds it can reproduce.
Expect to pay $4,500 to $6,000 if you can find one.
Kawai DP1 - Kawai claims this piano can so closely replicate a concert
grand, you just might forget it's a digital piano. It features 88 wooden keys
and is designed to have the same feel as a real piano.
If you can find one, expect to spend $10,000 to $15,000.
Korg SP-250 - Consider this the choice for anyone on a budget. It gets
excellent reviews in it's price range, yet is an affordable choice in the
digital piano world.
It's an 88-key piano and is far more portable than other two mentioned above. It
has weighted keys and comes with the pedals and stand.
This piano lists at a budget friendly $1,199 and can be found at online
retailers for about $700.