Best Keyboards for Beginners

If you’re looking to start learning piano, finding the perfect keyboard for your needs can be overwhelming. You may be wondering which brands are best, which features are necessary, and how much money is required to start. That’s precisely why we’ve put together a list of the best keyboards for beginners covering all budgets.

1. RockJam 61-Key Electronic Keyboard - $150

The RockJam 61-Key Electronic Keyboard is the perfect place to start if you're an absolute beginner. It comes with 61 keys, which allows you to slowly adjust to the size of a regular keyboard. 

Pros:

  • 100 keyboard sounds, 100 rhythms, 50 demo songs - useful for beginners who can practice with a variety of songs

  • This bundle includes every possible accessory you'll ever need to get started! Bundle includes:

    • Headphones

    • Keyboard stand

    • Sustain pedal

    • Heigh adjustable bench

  • With the added USB port, you can even plug it into your computer

    Cons:

    • Some keys have been reported to not function properly

    • Keys are very light - it doesn't give you the feel of a 'real' acoustic piano

    • Keyboard stand has been reported to be flimsy

    • 61 keys (as opposed to a full size 88-key keyboard)

Final Thoughts:

If you're an ABSOLUTE beginner, and are uncertain of your level of commitment, this bundle is perfect for you. But, keep in mind that cheap instruments don't last a very long time and an upgrade will be necessary to advance.  

2. Yamaha YPG-235 76 Key Portable Grand Piano - Around $290

Yamaha has been dominating the musical instrument market for many years, and for good reason. They produce some of the highest quality instruments around. The Yamaha YPG-235 76 Key Portable Grand Piano features 76 GST (graded soft touch) non-weighted keys. 

Pros:

  • Expandable library via USB port when plugged to computer

  • This bundle also includes every possible accessory you'll ever need to get started!

    • Headphones

    • Keyboard stand

    • Sustain pedal

    • Height adjustable bench

  • 2 year extended warranty

  • More than double the speaker output (12 W vs. 5 W)

  • Performance Assistant Technology features Chord/Free Mode in addition to Chord Mode

  • Bundle also includes free lesson code with Yamaha lessons

Cons:

  • Complaints of a poor keyboard stand 

  • Non-weighted keys won't give you the feel of a real piano

  • Reported issues with the headphone quality

Final thoughts

For under $300, this keyboard bundle is pretty darn good. It's very close to 88 keys, and it's a Yamaha, which means you've got a good warranty and it will last you a long time. 

3. Yamaha P115 88 Weighted Key Digital Piano - Around $600

The Yamaha P115 88 Digital Piano is a full sized keyboard with weighted keys and comes with all the necessary accessories.

Pros:

  • Excellent sound quality

  • Keys feel like a real piano

  • Great reverb

  • iPad control through app

  • One song recording capability

  • Split keyboard capability (great for lessons or playing duos

  • Music stand is very sturdy

  • The sustain pedal is weighted

  • Bundle includes:

    • Headphones

    • Keyboard stand

    • Sustain pedal

    • Height adjustable bench

Cons:

  • The stand and bench need to be manually assembled

  • The speakers are not very powerful

  • Keyboard stand is OK

4. Roland F-140R Digital Piano - Around $1200

I couldn't write this blog without recommending what I actually have, and use in my personal studio on the daily basis. That is, the Roland F-140R.

I absolutely love this thing and here's why:

Pros:

  • It's very thin, fits perfectly in my tiny room

  • The keys feel close to the real thing and have a nice touch

  • The volume can get really LOUD

  • There's a little built in headphone rack underneath the keyboard

  • The keyboard cover also functions as the music stand

  • The pedals are weighted and built in

  • No more reliance on flimsy keyboard stands. The keyboard is supported by a sturdy build

  • USB port plugs into the computer

Cons:

  • There aren't more than 4-5 instrument sounds. This is actually a plus for me because I don't care about on-board sounds other than an actual piano, but it may be a con for you.

  • It doesn't move around very easily with the built in keyboard stand

  • Doesn't include a bench

  • Doesn't include headphones

  • Assembly required


FINAL THOUGHTS

I'm quite biased and my opinion is this:

If you're looking to learn piano, don't undermine the importance of a quality instrument. If you're worried that your interest won't sustain long enough to justify a $1000+ digital piano, there's always cheaper options. However, the issue is that cheap instruments don't last very long, and you'll need to spend more money in order to upgrade. Buy once, and buy the best is my motto. Quality instruments have the ability to inspire creativity and motivation to practice. 

Good luck and happy playing!