“Should I buy a piano or a keyboard?” This is the question most frequently asked by the parent’s of beginning piano students or an adult beginner. Once you started your piano lesson, you need a good instrument to practice on. However, getting a good quality acoustic or grand piano can be very expensive and sometimes not meeting everyone’s budget. Do you really need such high-quality instrument as a beginner? Any other alternative which can serve the same purpose? Here are some of the factors that should be taken into consideration before deciding on which instrument is the best for you.
Factors to be Considered When Choosing an Instrument
How much is your budget for the instrument? If you have a high budget and strong determination in learning piano, it is recommended to get an acoustic / upright piano. An acoustic piano produces sounds with its hammer and string. It gives a high level of responsiveness, tone color and range of dynamics which is not reproducible with a keyboard. However, if you don’t have a budget for an acoustic piano, you can choose to get a good keyboard which can suit your requirement.
2. Space of Your Room or House
Grand piano and acoustic piano will take up a large space in your room. Therefore, you should find an ideal location which can fit the instrument before you buy it. If finding that space is a problem for you, it will be more practical to get a portable keyboard or digital piano instead.
3. Your Long Term Goal
What do you or your child plan to achieve in your piano learning? Are you learning it for leisure to play your favorite pop songs or are you planning to achieve the highest qualification in classical piano? Your long-term goal in piano learning will decide what kind of instrument you need. This also depends on your requirement on the quality of the instrument.
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Types of Instruments and Their Price Range
Price Range: $100 – $900
Price Range: $1000 – $3000
Acoustic / Upright Piano
Price Range: $4000 – $8000
Price Range: Above $10,000
The Best Keyboard for Beginners
It will be the best if all piano students can practice on an acoustic piano as soon as they can get their hands on it. However, if budget or other problem exists, a beginner piano student can always start off with a keyboard or digital piano and change to an acoustic piano at the later stage of his piano learning.
For those of you who have decided to get a keyboard, there are some criterias that you should look for to ensure that the keyboard you chose work well for its purposes.
Number of Keys
There are 88 keys on an acoustic piano, but some of the keyboards contain only 61 or 76 keys. When the key is less, you may not be able to play some pieces which involve a wider range of keys. The price of the keyboard is cheaper if the number of keys is lesser. So if budget allows, getting a keyboard with full 88 keys is most recommended.
You are recommended to get a keyboard with weighted keys which can produce the response closer to an acoustic piano. Practicing on weighted keys can help you to build the strength of your fingers and it also allows easier transition when you decided to practice on an acoustic piano.
One more thing, do not forget to get your adjustable keyboard stand and bench as well if they are not included with your keyboard. Practicing piano with the incorrect posture and position will affect the performance and develop bad habits. When practicing, your hands should be at the same level with the keyboard and your arms from wrist to elbow should be parallel to the floor.
My Top Pick
Are you using a piano or keyboard for your practice? How satisfy are you with your current instrument? Share your experience with us in the comment box below!