digital pianos

Cheryl said: Jan 6, 2016
Cheryl Ball
Suzuki Association Member
Piano
Dublin, OH
10 posts

I have had numerous parents who have asked me what the best digital piano or keyboard would be for them to purchase until they see if their child is really interested in piano. I know the best thing would be an acoustic piano-and have even suggested renting-but if anyone has researched options on digital pianos or keyboards I would love comments

Laurie Maetche said: Jan 7, 2016
 
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Guitar, Piano, Cello, Viola
10 posts

I use a digital piano with my fiddle group when we perform as many old halls and venues have the old pianos that are never tuned or that have had a hard life. I chose a keyboard with weighted keys, a full keyboard, built in speakers and not too many variations on sounds, (Mine has 8), and the final consideration was the overall weight as I had to transport it from venue to venue. There were 3 brands that I considered because of reputation, quality, and warranty service, Yamaha, Roland and Korg. I went with the Yamaha as I had a chance to borrow one and see how it met my needs. The model is: Electronic Piano P140. This model is already not available (I bought in 2006) and has been replaced by Electronic Piano P160. (Almost identical just 5 or 6 years newer). It is on a fold-able stand which is fairly stable (had to be purchased separately). There are other models with the legs attached to the keyboard, but for my needs of hauling it from place to place just not practical. To get anything of quality it wasn’t cheap, it was around $1500—2000 Canadian. To encourage the use of an acoustic piano, if you had some price comparisons of some of the better quality keyboards vs an acoustic, a family would be able to see the advantages, the main one being that an acoustic holds its value and that it is not that much more to buy quality right from the start. I say this because a new family will not realize all of the nuances available when playing that are possible with an acoustic and not a keyboard.

Elizabeth Erb Sherk said: Jan 7, 2016
 
Suzuki Association Member
Piano, Recorder, Suzuki Early Childhood Education, Guitar
25 posts

Quoting our colleague, Laurie Maetche:

… encourage the use of an acoustic piano, … the advantages, the main one being that an acoustic holds its value and that it is not that much more to buy quality right from the start. I say this because a new family will not realize all of the nuances available when playing that are possible with an acoustic and not a keyboard.”

A Suzuki/Kataoka mantra that I hold when discussing this issue with new parents is “Beginnings are the most important”. We are not “waiting to see if our child is really interested in piano”, quoting the originator of this discussion. As parents we have understood that music will be one of the core curriculums which we will ensure our children learn. The only advice I give to parents beginning to research how to create the best environment for the musical growth of their family is to “Buy the best acoustic piano you can afford” and “Start a savings fund to buy a grand piano as soon as possible.”

Heather Reichgott said: Jan 7, 2016
Heather ReichgottPiano
South Hadley, MA
94 posts

Why not rent a good upright for the first six months to a year? Probably about the same cost as buying a good digital.

Friederike said: Jan 7, 2016
Friederike Lehrbass
Suzuki Association Member
Violin
Plano, TX
71 posts

Many years ago we used to rent a piano, but then ended up buying an electric one. I agree that the sounds and playing is not as nice as a real piano, but I have to confess, at the moment I’m glad we had an electric one, bec we have moved quite a bit. ( last one was from California to Texas). And at the beginning when we had the piano we were part of a band and had to cart it around to play at a place. So it’s always important to consider why we get a piano. One of our desires is to eventually get a grandpiano….it does sound so much nicer…..I don’t think it hurts to get an electric one and at the same time save for an acoustic one….For violin rentals stores offer to rent to buy. Not sure if that is the same for pianos….

Praise the Lord with the stringed instrument

Angelica said: Jan 8, 2016
Angelica Plass
Suzuki Association Member
Piano
Albuquerque, NM
3 posts

I had a student who could not afford a piano. So I lent her my electronic piano, which I use as a second piano during recitals. She was more interested in the buttons and sounds than in using the piano to practice. Also her touch is very light. She had the piano for a year. This summer her dad got a used piano free from the school. I don’t know…. The “real” piano has a horrible. It’s difficult to control touch and it doesn’t hold a tuning. It needs more than a tuning. I prefer the electronic piano in this case. Comments and suggestions welcome.

AngelicaP

Angelica said: Jan 8, 2016
Angelica Plass
Suzuki Association Member
Piano
Albuquerque, NM
3 posts

Totally agree with Laurie Maetche

AngelicaP

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