The goal of the digital pianos with weighted keys is to simulate the traditional upright piano without the hefty weight and lack of portability. It is essential to experience the feel of the keys as if you are playing the authentic piano.
What digital piano has weighted keys?
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Digital pianos, acoustic pianos, organs, and electronic keyboards can be weighted in 4 different ways. These include; not-weighted, semi-weighted, hammer action and graded hammer action type. These, mixed with the different types of touch sensibility available, can contribute to the overall feel of reality when playing a keyboard compared to an upright or grand piano. You will be reading next are the different types of weighted keyboards that are featured on keyboards sold in the market today.
What are Weighted Keys?
Weighted keys are types of keys that are heavier than non-weighted keys when you play the piano. They are often centered on resistance and designed to create grand and acoustic pianos' action while playing piano music.
They also function on a harder press; the harder you press, the louder the music gets, and you achieve a realistic feel and sound.
The Different Types Of Weighted Keyboards:
1. Not Weighted Keyboards.
Non-weighted keyboards include most home electronic organs and pipe organs commonly found in churches and recital venues. Other non-weighted instruments are accordions, and entry-level keyboards are usually aimed at beginners. However, today, most professional keyboards claim to be weighted somehow.
2. Semi-weighted Keyboards
A semi-weighted keyboard includes some resistance since they do not rebound to their natural positions fast. Therefore, they need to be pressed a little more challenging to generate sound.
This action is common among the budget-end keyboards and keyboards designed for portability. A spring-action key with more resistance than the usual in budget-end keyboards. They give out an authentic feel of the piano but can't be compared to the realistic hammer action.
3. Hammer Action Keys
When we say that a digital piano or stage electronic piano has "hammer action" keys mean that the critical mechanism is in some way replicating the same action found on acoustic pianos.
The term hammer action is derived from acoustic pianos and often works when mini hammers are attached near keys to provide resistance when pressing the keys.
In this keyboard type, the resistance comes from a small hammer located and attached by a lever system near the key, not in spring. Other keyboards use this spring, as mentioned above, to give a resistant effect by springing back after they play each key. Manufacturers offer different types of hammer action simulation nowadays, and they seek to add more realism to high-end models.
4. Graded Hammer Weighting Keyboards.
More resistance is encountered in playing keys in the lower than the upper range on acoustic pianos. Keyboards with "graded hammer weighting" or "progressive hammer-action" will deliver heavier touch on the low notes of the instrument and lighter touch on the higher notes. Keys made from wood compared to plastic deliver an authentic piano feel, so some manufacturers make high-end models.
Importance of Buying Digital Pianos With Weighted Keys
You might be asking yourself the difference it makes when purchasing digital pianos with weighted keys. Here is the deal, fully weighted keys implement an action that recreates the feel of an acoustic piano. If you are a beginner in piano playing, you should use the fully-weighted piano keyboards to get a realistic playing experience.
The difference in playing piano using a weighted keyboard is felt even if you have never played an acoustic piano before. The difference is that you can tell if the keys are weighted or non-weighted instantly.
Note that most digital pianos have hammer keys but have unique laying; they all don't play the same way. Different instruments vary in size and price; you can not compare a $500 instrument to a $5000 instrument with weighted keys. They both have weighted keys, but there is a big difference in the critical actions of both instruments. The difference is in the action mechanism, the length of the keys and the material off the keyboard.
If you are not experienced in this sector, it might take some time for you to know the difference. However, if you have ever sat in front of an upright piano, you know how the feeling of using high-end digital pianos can get.
As much as a $5000 instrument is the best quality, not everyone can afford or is willing to get such an expensive piano.
Digital pianos vary in price, and you only have to choose what you prefer. You can get a wonderful upright digital piano at the same price as this weighted one. As you consider buying a piano of your choice, always go for the ones with a fully weighted necessary action regardless of your budget.
Getting a cheaper version will not guarantee you a 9-foot concert grand, but it will give you a simple hammer action for a realistic feel of acoustic pianos. These include the fundamental movements, weight and other aspects.
Fully weighted keys also help you develop finger strength and proper piano playing techniques. It makes piano playing seem easier and enjoyable since you have precise dynamic control and greater expression. It makes it easier to transition into playing actual acoustic piano easily if you want to.
1. Yamaha DGX-660 88-Key Graded Hammer Action Digital Piano[amazon box="B01CFOAIJG" template="horizontal"]
This is the best digital piano that gives aspiring pianists a fun way to enhance their learning experience. With this, players can feel what it is like to play with a band and sound like a pro. In addition, it gives aspiring pianists a better way to enhance their experience.
- The Chord tracker application takes full advantage of this wireless technology. It lets you play songs from your IOS device's song library wirelessly through the DGX-660's speaker. It also analyses the audio songs stored in your IOS device and then displays the chord symbol to you.
- This piano offers a world-class concert grand piano sound.
- It features an authentic piano touch, 88-note weighted GHS keyboard. Yamaha Graded Hammer Standard (GHS) keyboard offers a weighted action with heavier touch in the low end and lighter touch in the high end, similar to the hammers inside an acoustic piano.
- Its Damper Resonance feature digitally reproduces the vibration between strings on acoustic pianos.
- It features an Easy-to-read score and lyric display. In addition, its crystal-clear LCD can be switched to score or lyric display, showing you notation for any MIDI song that the DGX-660 is playing.
- The highly acclaimed Live! Cool! And sweet1 Voices feature a unique blend of long, stereo and multi-layered samples that capture the importance of each instrument, right down to genuine resonance, expression, and vibrato.
- This unit can record performances or MIDI songs as uncompressed, CD-quality to a USB flash drive using the Audio Recorder. It has a USB Audio Recording/Playback feature. You can copy songs to your computer to make CDs and share them over the internet.
- The Smart Chord feature makes you sound like a pro, even if you are just a newbie. Smart Chord will create entire chords from simple Pop triads to complex jazz 7th and 9th chords with just a single finger on your left hand.
- With the Style Recommender, you find styles quickly and efficiently when you know how the music should feel but don't know which style is perfect for the part. Just play a few notes in the song's rhythm you want to perform and let the Style Recommender offer a list of matching Styles.
- You can let your mobile music device be heard.
2. Casio Privia PX-770 Digital Console Piano[amazon box="B074FTTTMZ" template="horizontal"]
The world-renowned Casio Privia family of digital pianos grows with the PX-770. It is designed to bring an authentic grand piano experience in a slim, modern design. With its authentic piano sound, natural feel and impressive features, the PX-770 is a superb instrument for inspiring brilliant performances.
- PIANO PURITY. The PX-770's AiR Sound Source includes a beautiful new stereo grand piano that comes alive with natural damper resonance. Moreover, it stimulates the entire body of the instrument, not just the strings.
- WELL-PLAYED. The famous Tri-Sensor II Scaled Hammer Action piano keys express your performance needs. Privia's simulated ebony and ivory textures give you an authentic and comfortable touch. It is combined with an innovative hammer action that is accurately scaled across the key range.
- WELL-HEARD. The Casio PX-770's convenient features include a powerful stereo amplification system.
- WELL-EDUCATED. With the PX-770, you can connect two sets of headphones using the ¼" jacks on the front panel, making it ideal for quiet practice.
- WELL-APPOINTED. Using the PX-770's two-track MIDI recorder, you can record your performances. There are 60 songs included in the built-in Music Library.
- WELL-DRESSED. The piano is designed to complement any décor. It is available in black, oak or white finish.
- WELL-CONNECTED. The Pravia connects with class-compliant USB to any PC, Mac, iOS or Android device with no drivers or installations needed. In addition, the free Chordana Play for Piano app, which is available for iOS and Android devices, gives you complete control over every function of your piano.
3. KORG D1 88 Weighted Keys Piano[amazon box="B079K2LFDX" template="horizontal"]
Korg's instruments are often looked down on when it comes to entry-level and mid-range offers. That is embarrassing because while they are constantly looked down on, they have been producing the best cheap digital pianos over the years. The D1 model is just one of them. The D1 is technically not a digital piano but a stage piano. The only difference between a digital piano to a stage piano is that the digital piano has in-built speakers. In contrast, a stage piano uses external speakers or has a headphone jack to plug in your headphones.
How you use your instrument will define whether it will cause you an inconvenience or be a deal-breaker. If you want to have an easy time using this Korg D1 piano, have yourself a high-quality pair of headphones over the onboard speakers. It will serve you a great deal when playing low-end instruments that don't have complicated multi-speaker setups. So, if you are not bothered by the sense of speakers, it's time you ventured into the Korg D1!
D1 highlights an RH3 essential function that Korg's manufacturers only put on their workstations and higher-end digital pianos. The critical function may seem like a downside to you, but you are yet to discover the best feelings of key functions you will find at such an affordable price.
The RH3 has the perfect pivot length compared to all the covered products in this review. The critical response sounds more natural by facilitating playing into the keys with minimal effort. The weight of the keys is seemingly not too light, too heavy, enabling the RH3 to be versatile in playing a tone of music genres.
Furthermore, it comes with 30 inbuilt sounds, which will not disappoint you. It plays on two grand piano variation tones sampled from two different grand pianos. You can also use it to play some nice electric piano sounds, organs, strings and accompany with other instruments. The piano sounds include damper resonance and key-off, making it a real acoustic piano.
A downside is that it is expected to be lightweight since it is a stage piano, but on the contrary, it is one of the heaviest pianos on this list. Its lack of inbuilt speakers may make you think it is lightweight, but the more advanced essential action with longer sticks can make the weight seem less.
Talking of connectivity covers all the basics apart from the USB port where you get 5-pin I MIDIn/Out connectors. If you have any sound modules you want to connect, you can do so with these ports. The Korg D1 stands out as the most affordable stage piano in the market. If you are looking for a reliable yet straightforward stage piano or a MIDI controller, you should put this device on your list.
4. Korg LP-380 Lifestyle Digital Piano[amazon box="B00CC72LRY" template="horizontal"]
The Korg LP-380 Lifestyle Digital Piano offers an authentic grand piano experience in a slim design that adds style to your home. It provides a brilliant piano sound in a low-profile and slim design. The flat-top cabinet looks classy even when the key cover is closed. Its high-output amplifier and speakers flawlessly reproduce a real piano sound, while Korg's flagship RH3 keybed enables expressive performances.
The prestigious Korg LP_380 digital piano features the highly acclaimed RH3 keybed built in Kyoto, Japan. Artisans make them with the experience and expertise to produce some of the highest quality digital musical instruments available.
- Slim and stylish design
- A top-quality musical instrument made by an expert craftsman in Kyoto, Japan
- Rich and compelling acoustic piano sounds that are enjoyable to play
- The high-output amp section produces plenty of volumes
- RH3 (Real Weighted Hammer Action 3) keyboard
- Reduced chassis, package size, and weight
- Three-pedal design with half-damper support
5. Kawai ES110 Portable Digital Piano[amazon box="B01N7WBESD" template="horizontal"]
The Kawai ES110 Digital Piano combines a new graded hammer essential action, a new speaker system and 88-note piano sampling to offer an unbeatable piano experience in a low-cost, lightweight, portable instrument.
- The ES110 digital piano applies Kawai's acclaimed Harmonic Imaging Sound Technology, featuring 88-key piano sampling, creating its impressive sound.
- The feel of the Kawai ES110 is superb, thanks to the Responsive Hammer Compact (RHC) Weighted-key Action, an 88-note, graded hammer action with excellent feel and sensibility.
- BLUETOOTH®. The new Kawai ES110 digital piano brags integrated Bluetooth MIDI technology with the standard MIDI ports feature, allowing the digital piano to wirelessly communicate with supported smart devices.
- Lessons and Exercises. This digital piano features Alfred Publishing's most popular first-year children's method book.
- Song Recorder. The Kawai ES110 offers an easy-to-use 3-song built-in Recorder, ideal for self-evaluation or capturing a moment of inspiration.
- Optional Stand and Pedal. The piano's optional designer stand attaches to the bottom of the ES110 to create an elegant look suitable for any décor.
- Jacks and Connections. The Kawai ES110 comes with MIDI jacks useful for other musical instruments, computers, and device connections. In addition, it has audio Line Outputs for connecting with an external speaker system.
6. Roland FP-30 Digital Piano[amazon box="B07M9WFSTK" template="horizontal"]
I bet you have interacted with Roland digital pianos in most stages worldwide. You get to enjoy the high-quality sound in these digital piano-weighted keys from the powerhouse brand. The Roland manufacturers are known for making different keyboards and portable digital pianos. The Roland FP30 is a 88 key digital piano that suits a touring musician because of its portability.
You will love it mainly because it gives out a clear and authentic tone when played. In addition, this sound engine gives out a realistic playing experience as you gain control over the tone and the touch sensitivity that comes from a hammer action. These results in an authentic feel on the keys.
It includes modern functions such as Bluetooth connectivity to link it with some apps. You can now learn to play the piano through those apps and record your compositions. Furthermore, it has a pedal with a rubber plate that prevents slipping, enabling you to take it on long travels. Finally, it has a PHA-4 Standard keyboard that gives you a realistic piano experience when you are playing. The fully weighted keys on this PHA-4 Standard give you a good amount of weight when you play them. They are a little bit on the heavier side than the competition. It uses individually weighted hammers to produce mechanical movements to the piano to function accurately.
It is also sold bundled and comes with a pedal, headphones, a bench an AUX cable for convenience. You also get a free bracket to hold your iPad, tablet or phone while using an app to play.
7. CASIO PX-S1000[amazon box="B07N4MXR77" template="horizontal"]
The CASIO has been famous for producing quality keyboards since 2019when they brought the PX-S and CDP-S into the market. Before that, you would never find innovative and unique keyboards other than the new PX-S1000 and its bigger brother PX-S3000. The good thing is that all the bougie looks like it has remained affordable.
It is considered one of the best digital pianos primarily of its outstanding design. However, you can't fail to see its uniqueness from the rest in the market. It has a glossy black finish, touch-based illuminated controls and a minimalist design.
It is also the slimmest digital piano you can find in the market; it is even smaller than the PX-160 model, making it a compact and portable digital piano. In addition, Casio managed to fit into it with some quality speakers and fully weighted keyboard action. So if you are looking for digital pianos with weighted keys, why not grab this one!
While we are at keyboard action, it has a newly designed smart scaled hammer action that has a decreased size compared to other previous keyboards. The previous keyboards negatively affected the critical pivot length shorter than Roland's and Kawai's but comparable to Yamaha's GHS action.
It makes it challenging to play towards the back of these keys, but the good thing is that new essential action brings with it essential upgrades. It gives the piano a good sound quality with less noise, less bouncy. It also has individually scaled keys, covered with a quality textured material that brings out an ivory and ebony coating only found in an old acoustic piano.
If you question the sound quality, know that the piano samples are derived from a 9-foot concert grand and enhanced by resonance modeling algorithms taken from Casio's premium brand-Celvano Hybrid series. Therefore, it can be used as a stage piano since it brings out the sound of liveliness in performance that other digital pianos lack. Not to forget that it is probably one of the best digital pianos that offer sound tweaking options. You can easily adjust sound parameters such as string resonance, damper resonance, damper noise, and even switch the action noise on and off.
The critical focus is centered on the piano, so don't expect a lot of praises on the keyboard. Although, you will find 18-built in piano tones and some excellent electric pianos, organs and strings. You also get 60 preset songs that can give you an easy time during piano lessons. They make piano playing look simpler since you can learn and practice independently.
The PX-S1000 is a good choice for portable digital pianos as it can run on battery power for an estimated time. So you can take it o any outdoor event and play it for a while without worrying about the extension cords and wall sockets.
It is also unique, and it has an audio-in port that enables you to stream your favorite songs and backing tracks from your phone or tablet to the keyboard's internal speakers. Alternatively, you can connect your phone or tablet to the keyboard's Bluetooth audio since it is also supported.
The only downside is that you will not transfer any MIDI recording or data via Bluetooth. You only use audio. Also, to use Casio's Chordana Play app, you will have to plug into the type B USB port located at the back of the instrument.
Thanks to its variety of connectivity options, the PX-S1000 is excellent for a piano player who would need a gigging keyboard.
8. YAMAHA P-125 solid intermediate piano[amazon box="B07BSM7PFL" template="horizontal"]
If you are a piano player, then Yamaha is a popular term you have heard. The P-125 is the new mid-range in the Yamaha portable series. Like its P-115, the keyboard already has one of the most popular intermediate fully weighted keys on the market since it is an upgrade from the previous release.
If you are worried about the price, you should know that Yamaha has every price range in their product category to find the best cheap digital pianos from the same brand. First, let us discuss the P-125 features from the keyboard. The keyboard features the tried and true Graded Hammer Standard keyboard action that Yamaha has used in their entry-level and mid-range digital pianos.
It is one of the most weighted actions Yamaha has and can also be found in the P-45 model. It is an essential function designed for portable digital pianos. The GHS keyboard uses a 2-sensor detection system with soft plastic keys and a matte finish that gives them a non-slippery realistic feel.
The sound department makes P-125 shine the most. Three components make it possible:
The pure CF sound engine: The P-125 has a pure Cf sound engine at the heart of the piano that provides an incredible piano sound sampled from Yamaha's grand pianos.
The 192 note polyphony also has a 192 note polyphony that promotes sound clarity during performances. So you get to hear every detail of your performance without being cut off, even when you use multiple backing tracks at once.
Two-way speaker system: The P-125 has a quality 2-way speaker system consisting of four speakers with 2*7W amplifiers. The speakers deliver good sound quality, and due to the dedicated actual circle speakers, the P-125 can boast an excellent bass response.
The P-125 boasts of its weighted keys and the metronome and transform function with split/Duo/Dual mode with a midi recorder. Compared to its competitors with one midi recorder, the P-125 allows you to record 2 tracks for each song. In addition, you can record each part of your music separately as a track and play them together as a single song.
The downside to this model is that it does not offer many options to customize the sound, so you cannot modify the sounds to your liking. It also does not offer any temperament options apart from the default equal, and you cannot adjust the elements of piano sound such as the damper resonance or noise.
The great thing is that it offers functionality through its USB audio interface function, which is rare and not found on many digital pianos of this price range. The function allows you to use the USB port to transfer midi data and audio. In addition, it allows you to record multiple-layer sounds into your DAW without the need for external speakers or interfaces.
If you seek a gig-friendly instrument that will be reliable and authentic, then the Yamaha p-125, the solid intermediate piano, is the choice for you.
9. Yamaha P-115 88-Key Digital Piano Weighted Action with GHS Action[amazon box="B00UHBGE7A" template="horizontal"]
If you're looking for the best-weighted keyboards with 88 keys that also have plenty of digital functionality, do not look further than this addition to Yamaha's famous P-series line.
- The Yamaha P-115 has included the sound of Yamaha's renowned CFIII 9' concert grand piano. Moreover, it is faithfully reproduced, resulting in incredible dynamics and expressiveness making Pure CF-equipped digital pianos worthy of the Yamaha name.
- Yamaha P-115 series are authentic to touch. Perfect for aspiring pianists, playing on GHS action builds the proper finger technique for when the time comes to perform on an acoustic piano. In addition, the matte finish of the black keys is less slippery.
- The tweeter position of the Yamaha P-115 has been improved to align with the performer's ears. This new feature and configuration assure that the instrument sounds sparkle and come alive across the entire tonal range.
- The P-115 offers a variety of rhythm patterns onboard the keyboard for practice or performance. In addition, you can use the rhythms for an additional element of fun to your practice.
- This digital piano with weighted keys is loaded with various rich voices, from pianos to electric pianos, organs, strings, bass and more. In addition, these Voices can be augmented by four different reverbs that you can adjust.
- With the Yamaha P-115, you can sound like two players all by yourself by using the Pianist Styles feature.
- A Digital Piano Controller application allows you to control many functions in Yamaha digital pianos with your iPhone or iPad.
- The AUX outlet jacks allow audio to be sent to an external amplifier during live events, parties, and presentations. Just power up and get connected.
- With the Yamaha P-115, you can conserve energy with the convenient auto power-off feature. In addition, the auto power-off shuts down the instrument after a period of inactivity.
10. Roland RD-64 Digital Piano Keyboard[amazon box="B00B1NY5GA" template="horizontal"]
The Roland RD-64 is one of the best digital pianos with weighted keys. It has a supernatural sound engine that gives clarity and depth, giving you a realistic piano experience whenever you play the keys. It has 12 tones that include the organ and clavinet. It weighs 13 kgs, with a design to fit at the back of your car for convenience when moving around.
The product is not known for accurate and responsive weighted keys because of its size. However, it also comes with inbuilt effects such as the reverb and EQ. In addition, it features an option that allows you to set it up with the INTEGRA-7 modular system to channel the sounds of 80 synths and Roland's Jupiter 50.
If you are a beginner at playing piano, this grand piano will be the right choice for you as it is effortless to get started with and has a variety of sounds you can use for your piano lessons.
Frequently Asked Questions On Digital Piano Weighted Keys
1. What is the best 88-key digital piano with a weighted keyboard?
Our pick remains the Yamaha DGX-660 88-Key Graded Hammer Action for available weighted Keyboards in the market.
2. Are weighted keys better?
The "Weighted vs. unweighted keys" discussion continues. This bottles down to personal preference. For students, both are recommended since they are building coordination, timing, and familiarity with the keyboard in the initial stages.
When advancing in skill, you can understand the unique benefits both have to offer. e.g., weighted keys are suitable for building finger strength, and unweighted keys are suitable for encouraging precise playing.
3. Which keyboard is more like a piano?
The Kawai MP11SE is up on the list when sounding like a piano.
Kawai MP11SE, 88 Keys Stage Piano
- Class-leading Grand Feel wooden-key keyboard action.
- Stunning SK-EX, SK-5, and EX acoustic grand piano sounds.
- Strong selection of realistic electric pianos and other sounds.
- Wide variety of Virtual Technician sound editing parameters.
- Intuitive panel with independent sound sections and effects.
Others are the Roland RD-2000, Nord Grand, and the Dexibell Vivo S7 Pro.
4. What Keyboards have weighted keys?
There are several weighted keys in the market, some mentioned above. However, if searching for the best, look at the following brands: Yamaha, Nord, Roland Dexibell etc. You will be sure to get what you desire.
5. Should I get a 61 or 88 key keyboard?
The majority of keyboards have 66, 72, or 88 keys. Sixty-six keys are necessary for learning to play for a beginner, and a 72-key instrument will play most music. However, a complete 88-key piano is advisable for anyone looking to play classical piano, particularly if they intend to play a traditional piano in the future.
6. How do I know if my keyboard has weighted keys?
You should note that keyboards lie in these categories: weighted, semi-weighted, synth-action, and unweighted. The best way to note this is to understand the properties and apply them to your keyboard. On the other hand, it is also possible to test a weighted keyboard with your keyboard (side-by-side if possible).