There’s never been a better time to learn how to play the piano!
Long gone are the days of limited practice hours and the need for bulky acoustic or digital pianos. Fortunately, there is a great selection of compact digital pianos for beginners which enable you to practice with headphones and can easily fit into your living space. Here we present to you our 8 ‘best piano for beginners’ choices…
1. Casio CDP-S100 Slimline Digital Piano
Casio is a name synonymous with the production of instruments ranging from absolute beginner to world-class professional levels. The Casio CDP-S100 Slimline Digital Piano is a one-stop-shop solution for beginners that offers superb performance without costing the earth. Each model comes with an AC Adaptor, an SP-3 Sustain Pedal, and a music rest.
At Dawsons Music, we also have an exclusive Casio CDP-S100 Bundle that also includes a bench, headphones, and stand to get you up and running in no time at all.
Realistic playing feel
The CDP-S100 offers 88-keys equipped with their proprietary scaled hammer-action II keyboard technology alongside simulated ebony and ivory textured keys, which produces a playing feel that closely matches that of an acoustic piano.
Powered by Casio’s Dynamic Stereo Sound Engine, there’s a comprehensive selection of instruments that can be utilised along with a full suite of effects that include chorus and reverb, allowing your creativity to run wild. There’s a built in dual 8-Watt speaker system that ensures you’ll be heard loud and clear. However, when you wish to practise in private you can plug in some headphones and you’re good to go.
Thanks to the built-in USB connection and 3.5mm Aux In socket, you can listen, learn and play music from your smartphone or tablet. The CDP-S100 is fully compatible with iOS and Android devices, and you also have access to Casio’s free Chordana Play Piano App. Chordana shows you how to play over 100 famous pieces of classical music, it enables you to control the piano remotely, and acts as a PDF music viewer.
Another bonus feature with the Casio CDP-S100 Slimline Digital Piano is that it can run for up to 13 hours of playing time on just 6 AA batteries. Weighing in at 10.5kg it is light enough to take anywhere that your music takes you.
2. Casio PX-S1000 Digital Piano
The Casio PX-S1000 Digital Piano can lay claim to being the world’s slimmest digital piano. Furthering the iconic Casio Privia range, the PX-S1000 bears the outstanding build quality of its predecessors whilst boasting new features to make it better than ever before.
Remarkable tactile performance
You’ll find 88 weighted keys with simulated ebony and ivory textures for a realistic tactile playing feel. Thanks to the Smart Scaled Hammer Action keyboard you can rest assured that the touch response of each individual key feels authentic and adheres to the playing experience you’d expect on an acoustic piano.
Casio have gone to the Nth degree to recreate the subtle nuances of an acoustic piano including string and damper resonance, and even the mechanical action noise.
Delightfully simple display
The PX-S1000 is host to Casio’s unique Active Touch Panel Display, which places a touch sensitive panel above the keys. When not in use, the panel becomes dark so that you can play without distraction, and then lights up when activated. There are a range of functions including Song Recorder, Metronome, and sound select controls aplenty.
Thanks to built-in Bluetooth connectivity you can wirelessly connect any Bluetooth compatible device and listen/play along with music streamed through the speakers of the piano.
Using the USB connection you can compose, practise, and play music from your smartphone or tablet. As with the CDP-S100, the PX-S1000 is compatible with iOS and Android devices, and can be used with Casio’s free Chordana Play Piano App.
3. Yamaha Piaggero NP-32 Digital Piano
The Yamaha Piaggero NP-32 Digital Piano offers a simple yet delightfully practical design for those who want quality without overly fussy design.
Graded Soft Touch Keyboard
There are 76 full-size touch-responsive keys that boast Yamaha’s ‘Graded Soft Touch’ technology to establish a realistic playing feel. Therefore, the keys in the lower register have a heavier feel, whilst the high keys are much more sensitive to the touch, which also makes the transition between the Piaggero NP-32 and an acoustic piano is much easier.
Advanced Wave Memory Stereo Sampling
Employing their proprietary AWM (Advanced Wave Memory) stereo sampling sound engine, Yamaha infuse the Piaggero NP-32 with an expressive bank of sounds to play with that includes voices sampled from one of Yamaha’s finest concert grand pianos, electric pianos, and more.
Yamaha offers a range of iOS based apps including Digital Piano Controller, Metronome, and NoteStar for use with the Piaggero series.
4. Kawai ES110 Stage Piano
Having a long history of excellent acoustic piano production Kawai has the technical know-how to engineer exceptional digital instruments. None more so than the Kawai ES110 Stage Piano.
Kawai has used its own bespoke harmonic imaging technology to power the varied internal instruments. This includes a range of grand pianos, organs, strings and more. The ES110 also has a built-in sequencer so that you can record your performances and practice alongside them to better your timing and dynamics.
The Kawai ES110 Stage Piano comes with a built-in lesson function, including a collection of Burgmüller etudes and Alfred Basic Piano lessons, from the popular course books. The ES110 has also been gifted with Bluetooth for use with a suite of free apps.
5. Yamaha YDP-103B Digital Piano
Yamaha are grand piano legends, which has given them a powerful advantage when creating their range of digital pianos. The sound of their legendary concert grand’s sit within the Yamaha YDP-103B Arius Digital Piano thanks to their proprietary AWM sampling technology, which is complemented with a superb graded weight keyboard system for an authentic acoustic piano playing feel.
Pedal control worthy of a concert grand
Half-damper pedal control creates a more detailed nuance and subtlety when playing, which is similar to the pedaling feel on a grand piano. This feature allows for the continuous increase in lengths of sustained notes, from slight to full as the pedal is depressed.
As well as offering a superb playing experience, the YDP-103B boasts the ability to work with iOS apps, which are designed to promote music and piano education. Connect using the Yamaha UD-BT01 or Lightning-USB Camera Adaptor (both sold separately).
6. Casio Privia PX-S3000 Digital Piano
If there’s one thing Casio is guilty of it’s giving you value for money. Although the PX-S3000 Digital Piano is at the top of the range in the Privia series, some other models of a similar price don’t come as loaded with beginner-friendly features.
The 88-key Smart Scaled Hammer Action Keyboard is perfect for honing your skills on and makes it a breeze to transfer between the PX-S3000 and an acoustic piano.
The built-in Advanced AiR piano engine recreates perfect, adjustable tones and with 700 AiR Stereo Tones that can be played solo, layered together or assigned to different areas of the keyboard. These include electric pianos, orchestral tones, guitars, synths, and much more. You can even save your favourite combinations for later recall in any of 96 registration memories!
There are two pedal inputs for connecting sustain and expression pedals, unleashing your creative potential when performing live.
For arrangers and songwriters, you have access to 200 Smart Styles which provide a live backing band to accompany you as you play. Once you lock in an idea you can use the Song Recorder to capture it and even record the entire performance using the USB Audio Recorder. Live control knobs give you realtime control over tone manipulation, allowing you to change elements such as layer balance, effect depth, and pitch control.
Another benefit is that the Casio Privia PX-S3000 is a digital piano that’s designed to grow with you. As such, you won’t need to upgrade for a very long time indeed. Built-in Bluetooth and USB connectivity, Chordana compatibility and free Rockschool digital downloads all combine to provide a powerful package that is hard to beat, whether you’re just starting out or are a seasoned pro!
7. Kawai KDP110 Digital Piano
This brings us finally to the Kawai KDP110 Digital Piano bundle. Again, elegance is the order of the day with its beautiful rosewood finish and chrome pedals. The styling is just as good as it is to play and, thanks to the inclusion of songs made for learning and wireless connectivity for apps, the KDP110 is ideal for a beginner.
As you would expect from Kawai the sound quality is incredible. Whilst certainly towards the pricier end of this list it’s certainly not one that you will need to replace any time soon. Kawai also agree, backing this with a free 5-year warranty.
We hope this list has helped you out toward making your choice for a new digital piano. As we have seen there’s no shortage of features for newer players today and the ability to practice in silence will surely be music to some parents out there.
Quick links to all models featured are listed below:
- Casio CDP-S100 Slimline Digital Piano
- Casio CDP-S100 Slimeline Digital Piano Bundle
- Casio PX-S1000 Digital Piano
- Yamaha Piaggero NP-32 Digital Piano
- Kawai ES110 Stage Piano
- Kawai ES110 Stage Piano Bundle
- Yamaha YDP-103B Arius Digital Piano
- Casio PX-S3000BKC5 Digital Piano
- Casio PX-S3000BKC5 Digital Piano Bundle
- Kawai KDP110 Digital Piano Bundle
As always, please contact us if you need any more advice on your choice.
Shop the store
For more options head to the Keyboard & Piano section on the Dawsons website. Alternatively, venture to your nearest Dawsons Music Store where our in-store specialists will be more than happy to help you out.
Jon is a multi-instrumentalist with a passion for inspiring others to get involved in making music. After spending many years playing venues here, there and – pretty much – everywhere, he joined the Dawsons’ Music Web Team before progressing into his current role managing the Dawsons Blog.