From classical to country, romantic to rock, pop to punk, traditional to techno, pianos and keyboards are never far away. Whether they’re providing the melody, acting as part of the rhythm section, providing a harmonic bed or screaming a synthesised bassline, the black and white keys are never far away....
The dream for most musicians is to own an acoustic piano, and ideally a beautiful concert grand! If space is tight but you still want that acoustic sound, it might be that an upright piano is the right option. Being an acoustic instrument, each piano will have a different feel and tone, so if you’re able to visit the store to try out the instruments, you’ll be able to compare and contrast the different models and styles available.
If you’re wanting a machine that can provide not only piano sounds, but also electric piano, organ, synthesiser, orchestral and even drum sounds, you’ll be in the market for a keyboard or digital piano. Keyboards are broken up in to a few categories depending on their primary function and the types of sounds they reproduce.
Digital Pianos are designed to replicate the acoustic piano experience as closely as possible, but with the advantage of quiet playing and additional sounds at your fingertips. Digital pianos are typically a “furniture” piece, designed to be kept in the home and enjoyed as an acoustic piano would.
Keyboards will often have a reduced number of keys from a piano, often 61 notes compared to a piano’s 88, while containing a multitude of sounds, rhythms and accompaniments to enhance your learning experience. To keep the weight down, most keyboards will have a much lighter action than a piano due to the absence of the hammer mechanism found in pianos and digital pianos. Some full length keyboards will be designed more for stage and live performance use, forgoing the need for speakers inside the keyboard and having a more robust construction.
Organs and Synthesizers provide a very specific application, the reproduction of drawbar organ and synthesized electronic sounds respectively. You will often find these styles of sounds in other keyboards, but not to the quality and customisability of a dedicated organ or synth.