What’s the Best Digital Piano for the Money?
In this article, I will be discussing how to look for pianos that give you the most bang for your buck. Looking for the best digital piano for the money can be a daunting and maybe even confusing exercise, especially when you think about how much money you could potentially spend.
However, not everyone has tons of money to spend on instruments—no matter how good they are. So because of this, we wanted to identify some of the pianos on the market that, despite their price range, still have a lot to offer the pianist.
We are going to look at pianos from a number of different brands and separate them into three categories: digital pianos under $300, under $600, and under $1000.
Below, check out our interactive table that compares some of the better piano options in a variety of different (but affordable) price ranges. Whether you’re looking for a piano that’s under $500 or willing to spend a little bit more than that for better computers and features, you can compare a handful of awesome and very well made digital pianos against one another:
|Alesis Prestige Artist|
Best Piano for the Money: Examining Cost
Digital Pianos can certainly get up there in cost. It would be very easy to do a quick search of digital pianos and find a good number of them in the $3,000 to $5,000 range.
And many of them would be high quality pianos with hundreds if not thousands of features.
So, we have to begin this article with the caveat that, when we talk about getting a good piano “for the money,” we are also in a sense cutting out some of the more higher quality instruments. But that is certainly okay, as you’ll notice that there are still a lot of great options available to you.
And below, please take a look at some of the best selling digital pianos currently available online, and ones we think are great values for the money:
|1) Yamaha P-515|
|2) Casio PX-S3100|
|3) Casio PX-870|
|4) Roland FP-E50|
|5) Roland FP-30X|
Best Digital Pianos under $300
The Williams Allegro is one of the first pianos that comes to mind when you think of the best bang for your buck under three hundred dollars.
Sometimes falling into this category can come with the stigma and label of “cheap digital piano.” But I certainly don’t think it’s a bad thing if a customer is satisfied with the product and has not hurt their wallet too badly in the process, either.
One of the best things about the Williams Allegro is that it features 88 keys. Many times, in order to reduce price on digital pianos, manufacturers will trim down the keybed to 76 or even 61 keys. While this may be what a person is looking for, you ideally do not want to have to resort to this just because you cannot afford a piano.
Also the keys on this piano are weighted, which really makes this affordable piano great. Unfortunately, many options under $300 have little to no weighting or hammer key action, so to find this here is certainly a plus. There are only 8 sounds on the machine (which seems limited, but is to be expected).
- Note: The Williams Allegro has since been replaced by the Williams Allegro 2, which we have reviewed here.
Here is the full list of sounds:
- Piano 1 (Classical)
- Piano 2 (Pop)
- Electric Piano 1
- Electric Piano 2 (Vintage)
- Church Organ
- Rock/Jazz Organ
- Upright Bass
This piano comes in at about $300 online, a price that would probably be a bit more if you got it at other outlets.
Another piano at the $300 and under level is the Yamaha Piaggero NP 31. This piano is part of Yamaha’s Piaggero series, a term they coined which is a mashup of two Italian words, piano and “leggero”, which means light.
These pianos are explicitly created to be light and portable, but not skimp out on features. This is certainly one piano where you get the most bang for your buck, because you can find some of the same technology and engineering here that you find in Yamaha models twice the size.
This piano is only 76 keys, part of the design of its portability, and features the Graded Soft Touch keyboard, and the first generation Advanced Wave Memory (AWM) Stereo Sampling. The Graded Soft Touch keyboard has no hammer system, but it is a semi-weighted system that will still get the job done.
Of course, in a perfect world, you would love to have 88 keys and a fully-weighted keyboard, but again, for the price (about $279 depending on the online retailer), this is a quality option.
- NOTE: The Yamaha NP-31 has since been replaced by the Yamaha NP-32, which we have reviewed here.
Best Pianos under $500
The best digital piano under $600 is easily the Casio CDP 220.This piano is one of the most underrated pianos on the market While it is hard to find in some instances, I believe I have still seen it sold in in places like Costco.
This piano, in my opinion, is on par with some of the Yamaha P Series pianos, along with some of the Privia digital pianos manufactured by Casio themselves.
It uses the Scaled Hammer Action Keyboard found in many other Casios, which showcases heavier keys on the left hand side of the board going all the way up to the lighter keys on the right hand side, with no foolish spring action keys.
There are 3 different levels of adjustable touch response, along with 700 built in tones and 200 built in rhythms. This is an amazing amount of tones and sounds, and gives the user ample access to rhythms to either be able to practice with or use in accompaniment during a performance.
The only bad thing is the lack of maximum polyphony–48 notes. Ideally, you’d like to see at least 120 polyphony here. With only 48 notes, I’m sure once you start layering sounds that some of the notes will begin to drop. But, with this piano going for around $520 online, it’s really the only drawback to an otherwise impressive instrument.
- NOTE: The Casio CDP-220 has been replaced by the Casio CDP-230, which we have reviewed here.
Best Pianos for Under $1K
There are a number of really great options for the best digital pianos under $2000.
One of them is the Yamaha P 155 (you can read our review for the newer Yamaha P-255 here). The P 155 combines elegance with class, and builds upon the success of the renowned Yamaha P 105.
The P 155 comes with an amazing Mahogany finish, with a sleek black console design and black and white keys. It has a full range of 88 keys, which are supported by the Graded Hammer Effect (GHE) keyboard, a fully capable hammer action system that grades out among some of the best.
The standard 128 notes of maximum polyphony is available here, so you should never have to worry about dropped notes. The tone generation takes a big step forward, however, with Dynamic Stereo Sampling, which has 4 layers of stereo samples for its instruments. This means that you can literally play as soft as you want, or as hard as you want, and the sound engine will expertly adapt to your playing style.
And with an amazing price of approximately $900 online, it might be too much of a deal to bypass.
While the P 155 is a great slab option, the Casio Celviano AP 220 is an amazing upright option. It is rare that you would even find upright digital pianos in this price range, since the added design, structure, and engineering is admittedly going to cost more.
You are also going to pay for an enhanced speaker system, which the AP 220 has in its 2 x 4.7 inch speaker system with double 8 watt amplifiers. This piano also has three levels of touch sensitivity, just like the CDP 220, but features a 4 level stereo sampling Linear Morphing system that’s a bit different from the one housed by the Yamaha P 155.
The best part about this upright is that it has the Tri-Sensor Scaled Hammer Action keyboard to support its 88 keys, which is the part of the piano which will make it feel most like an actual grand piano.
After shaving off about $200 from the retail price you will be delighted to find this digital upright for a cool $999.99 online.
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