Primarily, when buying a keyboard, you’ll come across 49, 61, and 88 key pianos. All of them are viable selections depending on what genre you want to play.
Beginners, for instance, young musicians, can play the 49 and 61 comfortably. However, playing such keyboards can be quite limiting when you advance musically; thus, you may need to buy a full-size keyboard to fit your needs.
The 88-key instruments are ideal for musicians from different genres. You can use them for practicing, recording, and even for on-stage performance. That’s why experts will recommend players, whether a beginner or professional, to buy these type of pianos because of their versatility.
As you do your shopping, you’ll come across a variety of 88 key keyboards in the market. If it’s your first time buying a piano, getting the right one for your needs, especially with all these options on the table, can be a bit confusing.
You have to consider so many factors, including price, best brands, and many other considerations.
Lucky for you, we’ve combined a list of the best ten 88 key keyboards that you should consider buying if you want to invest in a piano that you could play over different stages of your musical journey.
We made sure that we picked keyboards that would fit different situations and uses by doing in-depth research. So, make sure that you read until the end.
10 Best 88 Key Keyboards 2021
1. Kawai CE220 Digital Piano – Best For The Money
On top of our list is a keyboard that comes from a reputable brand in the world of pianos and keyboards. For those who want to spend a little bit more on their first digital piano, this is what you should purchase.
The digital piano is similar to the conventional acoustic piano. It offers the player 88-key graded hammer action wooden keys that give the exact feeling of playing a digital piano.
It also has a slide key cover for protecting the keys while not in action, three pedals, a vintage and premium ebony cabinet with a satin finish, removable music stand, two headphone jacks, and inbuilt speakers.
However, unlike the usual acoustic piano, this one does not occupy much space in your home.
We tested this piano, and we can say for sure that the sound produced on this instrument is superb. The 88-key piano provides up to 192 polyphony, which means that the music is brighter and fuller. You can even mess up with the audio to add some chorus, delay, phasing, and many other voices.
The voicing on this piano is also excellent. You can change the touch sensitivity of the keys. And honestly, the grand piano voice sounds similar to an acoustic piano.
The Kawai CE220 suits a variety of players, from beginners to expert. It’s ideal for playing diverse genres. You can use it on stage if you don’t have a piano, you can use it for practice, recording, entertaining guests with the inbuilt songs. You can also connect it to your Pc if you want to experience different music technologies.
The split keyboard feature also allows for a student-teacher situation. And if you want to practice silently, you can do so with the two headphone jacks available.
2. Roland FP-90 – Best Buy
In the world of digital pianos, one of the most reputable brands is the Roland, and especially the FP series. Today, we’ll review the FP-90. And for sure, this keyboard has some fantastic qualities you may not find in most pianos in its price range.
The FP-90 is a simple keyboard, which comes with a sturdy cover, and an optional stand. On it, you’ll find 88 keys made of wooden and other molded materials. Also, they have a progressive hammer technology, which is quite different from the usual graded hammer one.
You’ll also find four speakers and a user-friendly interface. The interface features an LED screen, metronome, voices, songs, and other functions.
The digital piano is suitable for all kinds of players since it provides the player with exclusive sound. Primarily, the speakers are super loud but offer quality sound.
We also listened to the grand piano setting, and it’s impressive. According to the manufacturer, they use supernatural modelling technology to come up with the piano sound. Note that the keyboard also offers organ, electric piano, strings, among many other voices.
Also, the FP-90 is 384 polyphony and comes with different layering and split options.
Even though Roland FP-90 is a budget keyboard, professionals will enjoy the sound that this keyboard produces. You can use it for any genre, as a controller, and even for piano sessions at home or church.
If you want other voices, you can connect the piano to your mobile phone or PC via Bluetooth. The FP-90 is also compatible with KDP sustain pedal or the RPU triple pedal.
3. The ONE Smart Keyboard Pro – Best Budget Buy
Beginners who want to invest in a piano that exhibits quality and excellence, the One Smart Keyboard Pro is the way to go. Here’s what you need to know about it.
Right of the box, the keyboard is a portable piano but has a well-built cover to protect it from damage. It features 88 keys, with hammer action. On the interface, the keyboard has LED lights that help the learner identify which keys he or she needs to press when playing a game or when having his or lessons.
When purchasing, you can go either for the vintage piano stand or for the X type stand. The vintage piano stand comes with three pedals for sustain, damper, and soft. It also has a music stand, where you can place your music sheet or tablets.
It also has inbuilt speakers. But you can connect it to your PC or laptop.
Although the One Smart piano is a budget-friendly piano, you can be sure that it does offer similar sound to the acoustic piano. The graded hammer action is also excellent.
We also tested the touch response, and to our amazement, you can adjust it. Hence, it fits different playing situations. The 128-note polyphony feature also ensures that the keyboard sounds realistic and authentic to its core.
The One Smart Piano is an instrument made with the learner in mind. Nonetheless, we found this piano to be quite versatile. It’s portable, connects to a computer, and a professional can still use it for recording since it has a recording feature in it.
4. Yamaha DGX660B Digital Piano
On the fourth position is a keyboard that you probably know. It’s one of the most successful models produced by Yamaha.
The digital piano is nothing short of exceptional. It comes with two large speakers, which are quite loud, 88 graded hammer keys, a sophisticated user interface with varied functions, an LED screen, a music stand, and an optional stand.
It is also compatible with most pedals. That’s why musicians love it.
Compared to previous versions in the DGX series, Yamaha seems to have made considerable changes to this one right here. Primarily, the keyboard is a 192 polyphony, which makes the sound full for all players. You can also manoeuvre through 205 styles, and has drum patterns, a metronome, a recording feature, and a library of songs.
We also loved the versatility of this digital piano. You can connect it to your computer via USB, other instruments and microphones.
The DGX660 is a worth buy for beginners and gigging musicians. It has a variety of features fit for different music settings, genres, and needs. You can use it for practice, jamming in a band setup, and during lessons.
5. Yamaha YDP143R Digital Piano
If you want a digital piano fitted with all the qualities you can find in an acoustic piano, Yamaha YDP 143R is here for you.
The Yamaha YDP143R comes with 88 graded hammer standard keys, a sturdy stand with a matching bench, a music stand, and a key cover.
Its simplistic design ensures that this piano fits into any space since it’s not as big.
The piano also comes with three pedals and a simple control interface.
The piano has inbuilt speakers, but if you want to practice silently, there’s a headphone jack to connect your headphones or earphones. The keyboard also has a stereophonic optimizer, which ensures that the sound remains realistic even as you use the headphones.
We tested the playability of this digital piano, and we noticed that the manufacturer sampled its grand piano voices from the Yamaha 9 CIIIF Concert grand piano. It also comes with several other voices, like the organ and the strings. And the good part is that you can layer the sounds.
Note that the piano is 192 polyphony.
It doesn’t matter what level you are in, but this keyboard will suit any player. The beginner will enjoy learning with it, and the professional can use it to jam and practice in any setup.
You can also record using the two-track recorder. If you want additional voices and functionalities, the YDP 143R connects to a phone, tablet or computer via a controller app, which the manufacturer provides.
6. Casio Privia PX-S3000 Digital Piano
Casio is yet another brand that manufactures quite competitive keyboards. And the Casio Privia PX-S300, a brother to the S1000, is a keyboard worth buying.
From the first look at this keyboard, we can conclude that the keyboard is compact and sturdy. It doesn’t take up much space in your studio or practicing space. The keyboard is slim and comes with a stand, which gives it that acoustic piano feel.
The manufacturer provides a keyboard with fully weighted keys with a smart, scaled hammer-action keyboard and looks similar to a professional keyboard. The user interface is easy to use with different settings available to fit your playing style.
The Casio Privia PX-S3000 uses a mix of modern technology and samples from the best acoustic pianos in the world. It comes with 192-note polyphony, 200 rhythms, 700 sounds, and many other effects.
Besides that, you can adjust the keyboard to fit your playing style, which most players would love to see in any digital piano. We also have to mention that the acoustic piano experience is breathtaking.
Beginners will benefit from this keyboard since it can adapt to any setting and genre. Elite players can also use this keyboard on stage and in the studio for recording purposes.
7. Korg LP380 Digital Piano
For learners and professional players looking for a piano that you can use at home, the Korg LP380 is worth trying. Here’s what you’ll love about it.
Primarily, the manufacturer provides a keyboard that has a sleek and slim design. It fits almost in any space and is easy to move.
You’ll get a stand, a matching bench, and a pair of headphones with this digital piano, a rare and unique package. The keyboard also comes with three pedals to give you the acoustic piano experience that every player wants.
The sound provided by this Korg digital piano is amazing. It comes with a bunch of amazing sound effects and voices that you can use. That includes the organ, electric piano, strings, synth, and so many other voices. For those practicing at home, note that the manufacturer includes a transpose button (which is a function that Korg rarely includes), up to 30 tones, and a metronome.
We tested this piano, and for sure, it’s a fully weighted 88 keyboard with real weighted hammer action as the manufacturer calls it.
Piano players often criticize Korg for their pianos. But the LP380 is an example of a piano that can work as a workstation and an alternative acoustic piano. Everyone will enjoy this piano since it’s portable, doesn’t occupy much space in your home, can connect with any PC or Mac, and is usable even in stage or recording studio.
8. Yamaha P515 Digital Piano
Yamaha P515 digital piano is one of the keyboards in this list that comes with exquisite features that most digital pianos lack.
Primarily, this keyboard is quite appealing from the way it looks. It comes with an excellent black finish to give you that same feeling as when you are playing an acoustic piano.
It’s quite portable even without the stand. And when you are using it at home, you can use the stand that the manufacturer provides. You’ll also get a triple pedal stand.
The control panel is also super intuitive. It features an LCD screen, which helps you change different functions with ease. Other functions include demos, a variety of voices, recording functions, rhythms, metronome, and many other onboard effects.
The P515 has onboard speakers that provide bright tones. You can also tailor the music to fit different environments, including reverb, resonance, and many others. If you want to practice silently, you can connect your headphones, and still, you’ll be able to enjoy the realistic and natural sounds.
Any player (whether beginner or expert) will enjoy playing this keyboard. It adapts to various environment, its portable, and with the MIDI port, you can connect it to your computer or Mac.
Note that the piano has a split function for student-teacher function, and a layering option when you want to use two voices simultaneously.
9. Casio Privia PX-870 Digital Piano
The Casio Privia PX-870 offers players a chance to play an acoustic piano at a lower price. Here’s why we liked it.
The PX-870 comes with an elegant stand with a three-pedal system. It also comes with a matching bench, and a sliding key cover to protect the keys. For the board, you’ll get 88 fully weighted keys with a Tri-sensor III scaled hammered keys.
Its control panel lies on the side of the keyboard. You’ll find different voices, including the grand piano and the electric piano, audio record button, MIDI record, metronome, and the function button.
There’s no better way to explain the tone that this keyboard provides. First, the four-speaker system is quite loud and provides realistic sound. If you want to practice silently, you can insert your headphones into one of the two headphone ports available.
We also noticed that the keyboard has an adjustable touch sensitivity feature, and the keys are in tune. In short, the Casio Privia PX-870 fits any playing style.
Although it’s impossible to use this digital piano without the stand, we can confidently conclude that it is worth buying. With the MIDI compatibility feature, you can connect it to a PA system, recorder, or computer. In the event of a teacher-student setting, the two can use the split function, and separate headphones when practicing.
10. Korg B1SP 88 Keys Digital Piano
If you are looking for your first digital piano, then there’s no harm in going for this 88-key keyboard. We loved everything about this keyboard, and here’s why you’ll love it too.
We think that Korg kept the design simple so that beginner players would not have a problem learning with this instrument.
Right out of the box, you’ll get a stand and a three-pedal system attached to it and a music stand. The keyboard is detachable from its stand. Meaning, you can play the keyboard without it.
It also has robust speaker systems, and if you want to practice silently, you can connect the keyboard to your amp. Note that you can’t use it as a MIDI controller.
After listening carefully to the sound projected by the Korg B1SP, we concluded that the manufacturer sampled acoustic piano sounds from the best pianos. You also have a few other voices added to it, including the electric piano.
Note that the keyboard is fully weighted, and features the graded hammer system. Every key is in tune and ready to play out of the box.
For beginners who want to focus on learning the piano, the Korg B1SP should be your first instrument. And even if it’s an ideal beginner piano, you’ll use it even in years to come for home practices and stage performance.
Besides, since it’s detachable from its stand, you should easily carry this keyboard.
There you have it, friends. The keyboards we highlight above all have fully weighted keys. Such keys need more pressure and can take time for you to get used to them. Nonetheless, heavy-weighted keys are beneficial since you’ll have an instrument that you can play for long.
For beginners, take your time when selecting the best 88 key keyboards. It can be quite daunting, but we hope that this list makes things a bit easy for you. Ensure that you consult a tutor or someone with more experience than you do. As you review, ask them about their opinion on the particular keyboards you select.