Electronic Keyboards: Guide
When someone decides to buy an electronic keyboard, in most likelihood, they are after an electronic keyboard for beginner, so that they can start learning the keyboard/piano.
Those who go for the high-end electronic keyboards usually have a different kind of profile.
They would probably have already learnt on a beginner keyboard for a few years and would like to upgrade, simply because they want something that sounds better and has pro features, or because they want to start playing in front of an audience.
Things to look for in a beginner electronic keyboard:
- Number of keys: 61 keys are preferred. You may opt for smaller keyboards as well, such as this one from Casio, for kids. Or you may even opt for 76-keys like this one from Yamaha, because of its great=value-for-money offer.
- Touch Sensitive Keys are preferred for serious learning
- Weighted vs. Semi-Weighted vs. Non-weighted Keys: Unless you are sure you want to learn piano (classical pieces), you can begin with the non-weighted keys, which is common on most inexpensive beginner keyboards
- Features: Again, most keyboards will come with whole lot features (its common nowadays). If you’re an adult, and are sure you don’t want all those bells and whistles and just need select piano sounds, you may consider Yamaha’s NP series.
The best part about learning on an electronic keyboard is that it exposes you to a lot of things, besides helping you learn to play the keyboard (by the way, the basics of learning the piano and the keyboard is the same). The various sounds, styles, effects, built-in recording function that you find on a keyboard, are the tools that a recording artist actually uses to create music. So its a great learning tool.
I hope you also have a better understanding of the differences between a keyboard and a digital piano. While its true that musical keyboards and digital pianos are two different categories, the fact is that most high-end digital pianos now incorporate all the features that you find on an advanced arranger music keyboard.
No doubt that the top-end digital pianos are made to serve as a practical substitute to a real acoustic or grand piano (they replicate the keyboard action, touch, expressiveness, and even the size to some extent). but a closer look at most of these digital pianos will reveal that besides the looks (upright or grand piano look), the fully weighted keyboard (electronic keyboards have spring-loaded keys), the pedals, the better quality piano sounds, most other features would be similar.
Best Electronic Keyboards for Beginners
- Irrespective of whether you buy a digital piano or an electronic music keyboard for beginners, some of the things that you should consider include: Ease of use, price, useful features, quality of sound, durability, bundled accessories.
- Another important thing to note is that the features that beginners consider ‘useful’, are different from what intermediate or advanced players would consider ‘useful’. Useful features for beginners would be those features that would help them learn. You want a keyboard that will get used, and not scare you. Pro keyboards/pianos, with all those advanced features & tools can be overwhelming for the beginner.
- Lot of buyers also make the mistake of buying a very expensive keyboard instrument, because they believe that they will be best. However, the simple fact is that you may not need tat kind of investment right now. Oh, and what if 1 year later you decide that you like the guitar more, or are not even interested in pursuing music? (I really hope that doesn’t happen with you).
Until now, and even now, most of the best beginner electronic keyboards were from Yamaha and Casio. while the two continue to make good arrange keyboards, a few other brands have also emerged that make beginner keyboards. However, they don’t make a wide range of keyboards, just a few models. On the other hand, Casio and Yamaha, make a wide range of keyboards even for beginners.
Here are the electronic keyboards that you may consider. Most of the electronic keyboards that have been suggested here are arranger keyboards. They all come with accompaniment patterns that help you sound like a one-man band.
I hope you now have a better understanding of what you should look for. Its common for people to begin on musical keyboards and later on make the switch from an electronic keyboard to a digital piano. This is the logical progression for many.