A digital piano with weighted keys can enrich your playing experience. They add a new dynamic to the sounds you can make, and they feel superb!
Have you ever felt the weight of music? It happens while pressing down on the keys; the momentum you offer from your fingertips. It also happens not a moment later, as the piano trembles the most beautiful sound.
In other words, few things are as important as the weight and feel of the keys when choosing a digital piano. So the team at JoyTunes figured we’d create a guide–the best guide–to help you navigate the world of digital pianos with weighted keys.
Why are weighted digital piano keys important?
The digital piano’s design emulates the acoustic piano–from the way the instrument sounds to how it looks and feels.
The acoustic piano’s materials also give the musician a certain feeling and a distinct touch.
Keys are where the musician and the instrument interact. And it turns out that our fingers–or rather, the people they’re attached to–prefer certain textures over others.
Weighted keys are essential pieces in the instrument’s mechanism. They play an integral role in creating the sounds that we all love.
As you push down on a key, it triggers a felt-covered hammer that strikes a steel string. With weighted keys, you have more expressive potential. The more velocity you apply to a key, the greater the sound’s power or intensity.
At the hands of a skilled pianist, weighted keys usher in another element to the instrument’s reverberations. In other words, weighted keys expand the possible tones and energy.
So in the quest to replicate the acoustic piano, people have added weighted keys to the digital rendition. With weighted keys, digital pianos provide you with a similar feel and expand the tones and sound for you to play.
Weighted keys, semi-weighted keys, and unweighted keys.
Digital pianos come with weighted, semi-weighted, and unweighted keys.
Each set of keys provides you with different qualities. For instance, unweighted keys will make your digital piano easier to carry around, and weighted keys offer greater expressive potential.
Weighted keys are often part of an assembly known as weighted action. The combination of weights and stronger springs offer more resistance. Meaning, a higher downward pressure–or force–needs to be applied to generate sounds.
Another assembly format for digital pianos is the Hammer action. The mechanism makes it so that when you press down on your key, a hammer strikes a surface – making it feel like an acoustic piano.
Most people prefer having a hammer-action keyboard. It closely emulates the sensation of a hammer striking a string. This sharpens your technique, but it also increases your finger’s strength and endurance.
Hammer action keyboards can also come with an additional feature known as the graded action assembly. The weighted keys are heavier in the lower end and gradually become lighter the higher you go.
Unweighted keys–or synth-action keyboards–are generally made with plastic using springs as the resistance mechanism. These keys provide little to no resistance. Therefore, pressing down the key requires less force, and the keys return to their initial position much faster.
Synth-action keyboards provide a quicker and light feel than weighted keyboards. And they’re typically designed to play music other than that of an acoustic piano.
Semi-weighted keys merge the synth-action or springs of unweighted keys with light weights used in weighted keys. And therefore, you get a taste of both worlds including mild to moderate resistance and a recoiled effect with a faster recoil–although not as fast as a synth-action.
The best overall digital piano with weighted keys.
Ultimately, the best digital piano will come down to your particular preferences. However, if you’re unsure what to look for, we came up with some fantastic options for pianists of various skill levels.
The Korg LP 380-88 is the whole package!
With 88 weighted keys, quality sounds, and a fresh look, this instrument is ideal for piano players at all levels.
The sound quality generated by the LP 380-88 is a step above the competition. With a state-of-the-art sound system, you can create music that closely resembles an acoustic piano.
Additionally, this instrument comes with a digital recording and editing system and a sturdy stand that includes three pedals.
The best digital piano with weighted keys for professionals.
As you progress in your musical journey, it’s nice to have an instrument that matches your capabilities. So whether you’re performing or just playing at a high level, this digital piano is a great choice!
The Roland RD-800 is one of the highest quality digital pianos today.
Harnessing the power of Roland’s recently developed SuperNATURAL technology, they’re on another level.
This digital keyboard can generate sounds that rival its acoustic predecessor – making it difficult for even the sharpest ears to detect the difference.
With five different acoustic sounds, 88 weighted keys, and an ivory-feel hammer action keyboard, you might forget you’re playing on a digital piano!
Roland’s RD-800 is ideal for solo and group performances. And the LCD user interface is straightforward and easy to use.
The best portable digital piano with weighted keys.
We have different needs when it comes to our musical instruments. Many people prioritize a piano’s portability. Jamming out with friends is a favorite activity shared by countless individuals.
There are tons of options out there. However, portability isn’t everything. The last thing you want to do is sacrifice the quality of your instrument.
The Casio PX-S1000 is the slimmest (and possibly the sexiest) digital piano in the world – making it ideal for transportation. And it’s one of the few digital pianos that runs on battery power (six AA batteries), so you can play almost anywhere.
This instrument merges portability and sound quality like no other digital piano.
Despite its slimmer build, the team at Casio managed to fit some quality speakers into its body and rocks a fully weighted keyboard.
The keys are covered with a material that closely resembles ivory and ebony–giving it that acoustic feel.
The PX-S1000 offers quality sounds as well as some incredible toggling options too! It comes with 18 sounds and 60 preset songs. Additionally, the keyboard also supports BlueTooth audio–so you can connect to a speaker.
Whether you like jamming with friends in a park, playing at gigs, or simply want to practice in the comfort of your home, the Casio PX-S1000 is an excellent choice.
Playing the digital piano can be a fun and enriching experience. However, you need to make sure that you choose the right instrument for your needs.
If you’re searching for that crisp acoustic piano feel and sound, weighted keys are essential components.
The ingenuity behind digital pianos is increasing at an exponential rate. So there are tons of great options that incorporate weighted keys. It’s just about knowing what to look for and where to look.
You know what else is increasing at an exponential rate? Your piano skills with the help of our immersive piano app!
Be amazed at the rate of your progress!