Buying a piano is a fantastic way to foster the arts in your own home. Learning to play the piano has physical benefits: it sharpens your motor skills and dexterity and also improves your hand-eye coordination. But it also provides mental benefits by helping to relieve stress and enhance your concentration. Buying a piano, however, is an investment. A digital piano or keyboard is one option that first-time piano buyers often consider over acoustic pianos because they are often more cost-effective. If you're in the same boat, here are a few of the pros and cons of digital pianos.
The number one reason that people consider buying digital over acoustic is typically because digital pianos are often cheaper than buying acoustic pianos. The typical range of digital pianos is between $100 and $3000. However, if you want your digital piano to feel like a real piano, you'll need a keyboard with weighted keys. These typically run in the $500 - $1000 range. Compare these prices to acoustic pianos that average around $3500 to $5000 new.
Another major benefit of a digital piano is that you aren't committed to keeping it in one spot in your home. It is lighter and more portable than an acoustic piano so you can move it from room to room as needed, which is especially handy if two siblings are sharing practice time.
Listening to a beginning player practice the piano can be irritating no matter how well-meaning the player. Parents love that digital pianos come with headphone jacks so that you can limit the noise while still encouraging your budding pianist to practice. Higher-end models even come with Bluetooth capability so you can practice with wireless headphones.
Another major reason that people choose digital pianos is that you'll never have to hire a piano tuner. It's a piano you can just plug and play.
No matter how good the tech, there is no substitute for the real sound of an acoustic piano. The sound of a digital piano is always limited to the quality of its speakers or the headphones you use. For better sound, you'll have to splurge for a higher-end keyboard. Some higher-end keyboards have become very convincing.
Playing a digital piano means you're always reliant on a power source whenever you want to play, or you're running on batteries that might need to be replaced or recharged.
The feel of an acoustic piano's keyboard and the way you can control the sound through pressure, also known as the keyboard's action, it's hard to mimic on a digital piano no matter how good the weighted keys.
Looking to get into music? Talk to a local music store to find which piano would be right for you.