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Joined: Jan 2022
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Hello everyone,
I'm Emily. I recently started college and wanted to pick up playing the piano as a hobby.
What piece of advice would you give me as a beginner? and What brand of digital piano should I buy?
Thanks in advance!

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Hi Emily, and welcome to the board.

The most important advice is surely: Get a teacher with whom you can connect.

About brands of digital pianos you will certainly get lots of diverging advice here... I'd say: Stick to the main brands (Yamaha, Kawai, Roland), and get the best you can (and want to) afford. Talk it over with your teacher before you buy.


Shigeru Kawai SK-2, etc.
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Originally Posted by Emily121
What brand of digital piano should I buy?

Yamaha, Kawai, Roland, Korg, Casio and Dexibell perhaps are the ones that people typically "take seriously" here. Then of course there are various models from each and people may have their favourites and pet peeves regarding those, but for an absolute beginner any should be fine.

For example Kawai doesn't really have any "bad" models, I'd think. Even the cheapest ones are quite good and they haven't cut the corners too much.

There are some others like Williams, Kurzweil, Donner and other less known and less "prestigious" names and the products may not be of a similar quality. (Kurzweil is a "prestigious" brand but they have the fancy stuff and the cheap not-so-great stuff, so it really depends on the exact model.)

For example this YouTube channel has reviewed some of the cheap models from less known brands: https://www.youtube.com/user/ThePianoforever/about

(And as usual people have varying opinions on him as a reviewer, but at least he's not selling any of them and should be unbiased in that sense.)

Stuart at Merriam Music does good review videos of the "prestigious" brands: https://www.youtube.com/c/MerriamPianos/videos

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A good teacher is priceless.

Yamaha / Roland / Kawai / Casio -- any "digital piano" (88 keys, "weighted action") from those makers will be OK. Some have cabinets, others are "slab pianos" which have built-in loudspeakers, but need a separate stand. The trade-offs are complicated, and depend on your living situation and budget.

Don't obsess about "which piano to buy". It's a tool for learning to play. As you learn, your needs, and tastes, may change. Your first piano may not be your last piano.

Have fun, and enjoy the journey --


. Charles
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Originally Posted by Charles Cohen
...
Don't obsess about "which piano to buy". It's a tool for learning to play. As you learn, your needs, and tastes, may change. Your first piano may not be your last piano.
...

That is sound advice... I know by experience. It is impossible to know, when you begin, what will perfectly fit you in some years, so don't lose too much time trying to find out the ideal instrument when you are really unaware of plenty of things which will come with experience.

Good luck on your musical journey!


Yamaha U3H
Kawai VPC1
...plus some other DPs, synths, controllers and VSTs

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Be Patient ...
Find someone you like and can teach you, a beginnner.
Most of us have a favorite brand. Ask 25 folks, you might end up with 25 models and brands.
Establish a budget - Let's be generous and say $2000.
As you ask about, you may find there are quite few used ones out there. Like so many who start out, in a fe months it is a dust collector and you can get a 'new' piano for a used price.
Touch, feel, are so important.
A weighted keyboard is better than springs.
Kawai and Yamaha are big here. You may consider asking Kawai James of your selection.
Oh, choose on ethat is easier to move.

Here is an older Kawai that you might find - Possibly $800-1250 or so would be a fair price. I had one. True wooden keys. Good sound engine.


And a Yamaha that is under a $1000 new. Good sound. Inexpensive. Plastic tuckunder weighted keys. Yamaha DGX670WH


Between these two, you should notice a difference in the keyboard and the sound. But as you can see, either will give good results if, you practice and do not blame the piano,

Oh. And, if you too in time have a dust collector, you would be able to sell wither of these (and others like them) fairly easily.

Have fun ...


Jon ...

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I have a friend, who is willing to teach me a few beginning lessons. I would have to get a professional teacher eventually, ig!
Btw are online courses worth the try?

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If your college offers it, you might sign up for a keyboard class. You can often find them as part of the music program or at a community college.

This should give you access to some pianos also.

Good luck!


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Originally Posted by Emily121
I have a friend, who is willing to teach me a few beginning lessons. I would have to get a professional teacher eventually, ig!
Btw are online courses worth the try?

For me, yes, one in particular. I watched a lot of YouTube videos, learned a lot, and kept going back to and searching for ones by one company, Pianote. Their stuff is kind of different because the app or website do not listen to what you're playing or connect to the MIDI output to "see" what you're playing. They're a series of short, 7-to-15 minute videos, that give a lot of information (but not too much for me) and each short video lesson has things to practice a bit before moving on. For me, they work well.

Pianote tries to be a community, has their own forums, people from many countries, and even have online holiday parties. Their Christmas party was fun for me. They also do online recitals (voluntary) where users can encourage each other.

While most apps have a 7-day trial Pianote will give you a full month via: https://www.pianote.com/affiliate-trial

I do use a few other apps that connect to the MIDI output (or can listen to an acoustic) to practice sight reading.

Me? I do not care for the "gameified" learning systems and I don't particularly care for the ones that focus on finger numbers. Finger numbers did help me but not for long and kept me from learning to read music, something I'd never learned previously.

As usual, the correct answer is "It depends" and in this case it depends on you. Try some out and see if they help you or not. That's all that matters.

Good luck,

Ray


Kawai CA99, Satin Black
Yamaha P-121
Kawai X-150D

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