Let’s face it! When it comes to learning piano, you get to work with a vast range of piano types such as the acoustic piano, digital piano, or keyboard. Today you are going to read complete our Which One’s Better Keyboard Vs Digital Piano – What’s the difference?. You also might think about whether you can actually learn to play piano on its digital counterparts. While the answer to that is “yes”, but do you actually know the difference between them?
You might wonder in these types of cases that if you can actually learn to play normal pianos without actually having a piano, that is, on keyboards, then what difference do they truly have in real life? Do they hold any special differences that are significant for you?
I am here today giving the answer to all your questions on the comparison between the two types: Keyboard Vs Digital Piano! So, let’s get on with it!
Keyboard vs Digital Piano : Comparison
Okay, if you really compare Keyboard Vs Digital Piano, you’ll find many similarities between them too. Despite their external outlook, sometimes it might be hard for you to accurately judge the functionality of a piano and a keyboard. So, I’m here to point out those obvious differences!
When I say ‘keys’ what comes to your mind that’s related to piano? Yes, the playing keys of the piano keyboard. So, by “key action” I meant the responsiveness of the keys when you push them down. Normally in pianos, you’ll get weighted keys. By weighted keys, it means that you’d feel the weight of the keys when you push them down.
Since the piano depends solely on the hammer function, so acoustic pianos have more key action than digital keyboards. Digital keyboards don’t need weighted keys since they replay the recorded version of their acoustic counterparts. So, you can observe a huge difference here.
Arrangement of the Keys
Now, to give a brief description of the key arrangement, it refers to the way keys are arranged in a piano keyboard. It’s the same in digital keyboards. The key arrangement in a digital keyboard is the same as the arrangement on a normal piano. So, your hand movements don’t differ much even if you go back and forth between the instruments.
Now, what about the width or thickness of the keys? Well, sometimes you might find keyboards with narrower keys than an original piano. If your question now is if there’s going to be a problem if you move back and forth the instruments, then No! Because the change in width doesn’t mean that the playing process will change. So, you can play piano on a legit piano or keyboard doesn’t really pose much difference.
You can see that there are a lot of keys on a piano, isn’t it? Well, do you know the exact number of keys present in it? If you don’t know already, let me tell you! There are a total of 88 keys in a normal piano. Though you’ll find pianos with a different number of keys. Those are designed for children. So, don’t get any ideas about skipping to learn about all the keys!
Digital keyboards, on the other hand, have a lesser number of keys. Because there are separate functions that let you reuse the same keys on a different scale. However, if you want to play the majority of piano compositions, you might want to buy a digital keyboard with 72 keys at least.
This is where the main difference between the piano and the keyboard comes in. Simply speaking, the acoustic piano produces sound through the hammer action. That is, when you play in an acoustic piano, the piano produce sound physically, I mean, when you push the keys, the hammers hit the strings and thus produce the sound. So, the sound you produce in an acoustic piano amplifies itself physically. Isn’t that amazing?!
On the other hand, digital keyboards are electronic instruments. So, they produce the sounds through electronic signals. Moreover, they even have various kinds of voices in them. That is, they can replicate the voice of horns, organs, strings, synthesizers, and so on. For being electronic, they need speakers to generate sound. However, you’ll get a special feature in digital keyboards, that is, you can control the volume of the sounds it generates. So cool!!
Size and Portability
This is another notable difference between a piano and a digital keyboard. Normally, pianos are larger, and you need to keep them in a place most of the time. Since their size is too big, you might call professionals if you think about moving them.
On the other hand, keyboards are super portable and don’t weigh too much. Because they’re very small, and you can put them away as you need, you can fold them and carry them while traveling so easily. So, feeling like playing ‘piano’ music even though you don’t have the proper room and spacing? Well, a keyboard is what you need in that case! You can literally set it up and play anywhere you want!
Both pianos and keyboards are sensitive instruments. So, it’s important to take care of them properly and keep them in good condition. In the case of regular pianos, in addition to the regular maintenance, you’ll need to keep them in tune on a regular basis. Moreover, you should be careful about the weather, temperature, and humidity factors because these affects greatly in the piano tuning, and in some cases deteriorates the components.
In the case of digital pianos, they are also kind of the same, but you don’t need to tune them as often as classic pianos. That saves a great hassle, isn’t it?
Frankly speaking, the price range of a piano is way higher than keyboards. Piano costs high or low depending on the material, manufacturer, design, and so on. However, you can also buy them second-hand for lesser prices.
You can buy keyboards for less than a hundred dollars. But there are also some models that are as costly as a high-quality classic piano. It all depends on the features it has on it. Think of the keyboards as the small version of pianos if you are not too sure whether to buy a piano or not.
Okay, Now Since You’re Done with the Comparisons, What Differences Can You Deduce from It?
To put it simply, a piano is just an acoustic musical instrument that has something called ‘weighted keys’ [I believe I already explained briefly what a weighted key is!]. And a keyboard is an electric musical instrument that needs a power source, often with unweighted keys.
Be it piano or keyboard, both have their own unique features and advantages. Let me give you one example, the weighted keys on pianos require a considerable amount of finger strength to play them properly. So, they can help you train that for you and enhance your piano playing technique.
But on keyboards, you get a whole new feature of precise playing. You can add sounds of other instruments as a backing track as you go. Moreover, if you make mistakes, the keyboard autocorrects it by itself, so it’s very good for professional playing or live performances.
Are There Any Differences in Learning Piano and Keyboards?
Technically, there isn’t. BUT there are a few facts about it.
Normally, keyboard lessons are the courses that teach you to read the right-hand notes or melodies while you need the left hand to play simple block chords, you can also know those as one-hand chords.
On the other side, piano lessons can teach you the process of how to read and play the music notes perfectly with each hand. This differs vastly from what you might learn in keyboard lessons.
Moreover, I haven’t mentioned MIDI keyboards yet. MIDI keyboards let you connect them with digital devices such as PCs, iPads, or other such devices. This is really convenient for you if you want opportunities regarding music-making.
Now, here’s another interesting fact about MIDI keyboards, they generally refer to any digital instrument with piano typesetting. So, it might roughly include keyboards and also digital pianos.
Okay, so, getting back to the main topic at hand, if you really observe the facts between Keyboard Vs Digital Piano, which one should you be choosing? Which one would provide you with the best facilities? Which one would be the best for you? Let’s look at the requirements that would suit you the best!
Keyboard Vs Digital Piano: Buying Factors
It all comes down to this, that which one would suit you the best considering your situation, isn’t it? Of course! Because you’re the one who’s going to play it. So, look at the considerable factors here to buy the piano or keyboard and check which one’s the best!
There are several factors for this. Some are complicated, some are simple. But let me express those in front of you in such a way that it becomes easy for you to understand even if you’re new to this!
- Budget: Well, this was predictable! There is a considerable difference between the cost of a piano and a keyboard. A piano would cost you a huge amount of money. So, be sure about it before spending them. However, you might easily get a keyboard since it cost way less than a normal piano.
- Your Proficiency Level: You might like a keyboard in your beginner stage. The basics of playing a keyboard and a piano are almost the same. So, it’s better if you buy a keyboard if you’re not too sure about your experience level. Because beginners often lose interest after facing the hardness of a piano. So, experience level matters on what you should buy.
- Space Available for Placing: Did you see the size of the Keyboard Vs Digital Piano? pianos are huge! Don’t buy the normal ones if you don’t have a grand hall room or enough empty space. Or you can just buy a keyboard and place it anywhere you want.
- Purpose of Use: Pianos are better suited when it comes to classical music. With this, I’m not saying you can’t play other pieces with the piano or vice versa, because it’s not what it is! Classic music pieces sound better in normal pianos whereas keyboards with different functions and facilities would support you better in somewhat modern music. So, fix your purpose before buying because both of these types are exceptionally good in their own way.
Last but not the least, your profession is important. For example, if you’re well versed in piano, or if you teach piano professionally, then a classic piano would suit you the best. Again, if you’re a professional musician or want to create music in a studio, then the keyboard version would work best for you. However, if you’re a piano student, you need to see how invested you are in the instrument. You wouldn’t want to buy a piano or keyboard and keep it unused always!
Also, don’t forget to check my piano buying guide and piano apps article The Best Piano Brands in the World – A Buyer’s Guide and The 10 Best Piano Learning Apps for Android & iOS and Digital Piano Yamaha P115 – Full Review and Complete Buying Guide for Beginners on 2021
Well, this is it! Now you know all there is to know in a battle of Keyboard Vs Digital Piano. Pianos and keyboards though look somewhat similar, but they have awfully lots of differences in between them. Even their number of keys differs from each other. A normal piano would have 88 keys in it, but on the other hand, a keyboard might have different key numbers.
Moreover, the key types, the sound configuration, sound system, and mechanism, all are different than each other! This is the thing that makes them perfect in their own way. Even though descended from the same family of classical pianos, you can’t really avoid the facilities the keyboards provide.
Though keyboards are very convenient in a lot of sections, they can never replace our very old friend, the classical pianos! They still have that place between us and are equally as popular as the modern pianos, aka, the keyboards. So, which one’s your favorite? Which one do you like the most?
Well, if you ask me, I love playing the classical piano, what about you? Having a hard time choosing one side? Well, it happens! Why don’t you stop thinking and try both if you can! That’s better, try both and decide who wins the battle of Keyboard Vs Digital Piano in your opinion!