digital under 500
Guide

Top 5 Best Digital Pianos Under $500

July 25, 2019

We’ve listed 5 best digital pianos under $500. Every one of the digital pianos listed comes with 88 weighted keys as well as unique features that differ from one to another. In this article, we’re going to take a look at the detailed information of these 5 best digital pianos and explore which one is the right piano for your needs.

We all know that a piano can rich our life in many ways. Buying an acoustic piano costs a lot. But for a digital piano, it doesn’t need to be a big investment.

Well, the prices of digital pianos range from $200 to several thousand. But 500 dollars is a reasonable price that you can get all the vital piano elements and lots of useful features you need. The digital pianos in this price range have relatively realistic sound and touch compared with those cheaper keyboards with non-weighted keys and electronic sound.

Let’s begin!

 

The Comparison of 5 best digital piano under $500

Before you read reviews of each digital piano, let’s have a look at a comparison table of 5 best digital pianos. It includes 8 main factors that you would consider. You can have a comparison straightforwardly.

ModelCasio PX160Roland FP-10Yamaha P-71Korg SP170Alesis Recital
88 digital Pianodigital piano under 500Affordable digital piano Yamaha p71Best digital piano under 500Beginner digital piano
Keys88 weighted keys88 weighted keys88 weighted keys88 weighted keys88 semi-weighted keys
Touch Sensitivity3 levels 5 levels 3 levels 3 levels 3 levels
Polyphony128 notes96 notes64 notes60 notes128 notes
Educational featuresBuild-in Lessons
(60 songs)
Skoove 3 month free Online Piano Lessons
Voices18 voices15 voices10 voices10 voices5 voices
Bluetooth
Recording(by using the app)
Weight24.5 pounds27 pounds25 pounds26.5 pounds15 pounds
View on Amazon View on Amazon View on Amazon View on Amazon View on Amazon

Top 5 Best Digital Piano Under $500 Reviews

 

BEST CHOICE -Casio Privia PX-160 88 Key Digital Piano

Casio PX-160 (Full review here) is our best choice of digital pianos under $500. It’s a decent digital piano with amazing key action. If you’re a player with a piano learning background, this digital piano comes with lots of powerful features, and there are lots of hidden features waiting for you to explore. While for the beginners, this model is a great long-term investment, offering more room for you to improve and will grow with you as you advance.

88 digital Piano

Brilliant features:

  • 88 hammer action keys
  • 128 polyphony
  • Recording function
  • Built-in Lessons
  • 2 track MIDI recorder

Watch out for:

  • No proper sustain pedal included

Why we choose it

Casio PX-160 (full review here) is equipped with a recording function. You can use it to record your performance and playback to find where you get wrong or not as perfect as you expected. It’s a great feature for practicing.

Impressively, recording 2 tracks is available in this model, which means you can record two different tunes or sounds separately and then play them back as one tune. It’s a powerful feature for those who want to create band songs or those who want to explore different sound combinations. Casio PX-160 is the only model on the list that has a 2-track recorder.

It’s also a great beginner digital piano thanks to the built-in lessons and 60 songs. You may struggle with two-hand skills at the beginning as a novice player. But built-in lessons in this model allow you to practice two hands individually by turning off one of the parts. After you train your hands separately, you can gradually try to play by using them together.

Additionally, Duet mode makes this model excellent for use in your piano lessons. You and your teacher can use the piano at the same time by splitting it into two equal ranges.

As soon as you touch this digital piano, you’ll feel how incredible key action it has. Casio PX-160 uses Casio’s famous Scaled Hammer Action II to make the key action as close to an acoustic piano as possible. It makes sure that you can get authentic feelings from the keys, offering the ultimate key-to-sound experience.

Casio PX-160 is a powerful digital piano that shines on the list. It probably is the best Casio digital piano under $500. You wouldn’t want to miss this deal whether you’re an advanced player or a beginner.

Check the latest price on Amazon

 

BEST PORTABLE -Roland Fp10 Portable Digital Piano

Roland is one of the top piano manufacturers that can compete with Casio and Yamaha. The brand is known for producing digital pianos with high-quality keys and tech features.

The price of Roland FP-10 is the same as Casio PX-160. It cut down some features of Casio PX-160 like built-in lessons and a 2-track recorder, but it has its unique features to make it a powerful standout on the list of best digital pianos under $500.

So, what can you get in this model?

digital piano under 500

Brilliant features:

  • 88 hammer action keys
  • Very portable and compact
  • Bluetooth MIDI
  • 5 levels of touch sensitivity
  • Extra features on Roland Piano Partner 2 app

Watch out for:

  • Cannot use Bluetooth headphones

Why we choose it

Roland FP-10 is the best portable and compact digital piano on the list. It’s not common to have a digital piano with weighted keys that weighs only 27 pounds. Therefore you can easily take it to your gig or your friend’s gatherings. Plus, the compact design lets you place it anywhere without taking up too much space.

The model uses the same sound engine (Roland SuperNATURAL sound engine) and key action as a more advanced model Roland FP-30, making it a competitive digital piano under $500. You can have an authentic touch and realistic sound that satisfy both advanced and entry-level players.

You might have noticed from the comparison table that it’s the only digital piano that has Bluetooth connectivity on the list. It allows you to connect DAWs or other devices wirelessly rather than using them via USB. Additional, Roland offers a free powerful app (Piano Partner 2)for you to download. You can use it as a remote controller to operate your digital pianos, such as tracking your daily practice, setting different functions and learning. It also has flash card games for training basic musical skills, which is excellent for beginners.

Roland FP-30 provides a pleasant experience of practicing and exploring for all levels of players. Featuring its Bluetooth connectivity, high-end sound engine, and super portable design, it also has 5 levels of touch sensitivity allowing you to play tunes from any music genre.

Check the latest price on Amazon

 

BEST SELLER -Yamaha P-71 Affordable Digital Piano

Yamaha P-71 (Full review here) is the best seller in the digital piano department. It’s identical to Yamaha P-45 which is a very popular model from Yamaha P series yet Yamaha P-71 is 50 dollars cheaper.

Yamaha is one of the top choices when it comes to digital pianos. The manufacturer has aimed to make the sound of digital pianos as similar to a real piano as possible. Yamaha P-71, as one of the best Yamaha piano keyboards, is designed to be a great model for learning and practicing. Plus, it has a sustain pedal included, allowing you to have truly enjoyable experiences by playing it.

Yamaha p71

 

Brilliant features:

  • 88 hammer action keys
  • High-quality sound
  • Compact design
  • Easy to operate

Watch out for:

  • No recording function
  • Keys are not textured

Why we choose it

The sound quality of Yamaha P-71 shines on the list. It uses Yamaha’s famous Advanced Wave Memory sound engine. The samplings was recorded from the sound of an acoustic piano. It creates a rich, deep and spacious sound for you to enjoy.

The model has 3 levels of touch sensitivity that can be adjusted to suit your preferences. It allows you to play pieces with a wide range of dynamics, which is great to express pieces more properly.

The keys are not textured as Casio PX-160 and Roland FP-10 so you may feel the keys are a bit plastic. But Yamaha uses Graded Hammer Standard weighted action to give you authentic touch. For beginners who want to perform on an acoustic piano in the future, it allows you to practice your finger strengthen.

The polyphony number is 64 notes which may not satisfy experienced players, but it’s enough for beginners and hobby players to play most pieces.

Overall, Yamaha P-71 is an excellent entry-level digital piano without bells and whistles. It’s great for beginners and amateurs to learn on and practice. For advanced players, you may find it struggling because of the lack of polyphony number. But whether you want to upgrade your non-weighted keyboard or buy one to practice, it could be a cost-effective choice and you’ll enjoy its resonate sound.

Check the latest price on Amazon

 

BEST EASY TO USE -Korg 170 Digital piano

Korg is another leading instrument manufacturer that is known for producing keyboards and synthesizers, but Korg’s digital pianos wouldn’t let you down as well.

Korg 170 is a 88-key fully-weighted digital piano that has loads of useful features. It has pianist essentials of sound and touch and it’s a great digital piano for you to use in your private piano lessons.

Best digital piano under 500

Brilliant features:

  • 88 hammer action keys
  • Sound effects, including Reverb, Chorus
  • Two headphone jacks
  • Simple and effective controls
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Watch out for:

  • Polyphony number of 60 notes

Why we choose it 

The model is equipped with Korg’s Natural Weighted Hammer Action which is close to Yamaha’s Graded Hammer Standard weighted action. You can feel the heavier touch in the bass end and lighter touch in the high end, just the same as a real piano.

Korg 170 offers various sound effects for you to use. It’s a great feature for band work. You can add effects on your band songs. For example, the Reverb can let your tunes sound more spacious and the Chorus can add warmth to your sound. Additionally, Korg 170 has 10 built-in sound, including various piano sounds, harpsichord, pipe organ, etc.

There are two headphone jacks, which is great to use in your private piano lessons. You and your teacher can use headphones at the same time. It’s ideal to use if you want to play Duet as well.

Korg 170 is a solid choice for beginners and early intermediate players. It’s very easy to use. Many players get confused about how to get back to the default setting after they explore different functions. But in this model, no matter which mode or sound you’re using, you can always get back by pressing the ‘piano’ button. You’ll never get confused about how to set it back to default if it’s been played by other people.

Check the latest price on Amazon

 

BEST BUDGET -Alesis Recital Digital Piano

Here you’ve reached the last item on the list. It’s probably the best affordable one among digital pianos.

The key action and sound may not compete with previous ones, but Alesis Revital is an 88 semi-weighted keys digital piano that offers very appealing price.

Beginner digital piano

Brilliant features:

  • 128 notes polyphony number
  • 3 month online piano lessons for free
  • Very portable
  • Powerful educational features

Watch out for:

  • Semi-weighted keys
  • Not for advanced players

Why we choose it

Though the keys are semi-weighted, the model is mainly designed to be more portable than others with weighted keys. The weight of Alesis Recital Digital Piano is only 15 pounds. So if you want to buy a digital piano that you can take it to anywhere you want, it’s a solid option.

The model is beginner-friendly thanks to the powerful educational features it has. Firstly, this digital piano comes with a 3-month Skoove subscription that you can take online piano lessons for free. Besides, teaching mode allows you to split keyboards with the same range. It’s a quite useful feature that you and your teacher can use during your piano lessons. Plus, Split and layer capability allowing you to split the keyboard into two parts and play two different sounds on the high end and bass end separately.

Alesis Recital Digital Piano is marketed as a beginner digital piano. It’s not as professional as other higher priced options in key action and sound aspects, so I wouldn’t recommend it to advanced players. But it provides many useful features for beginners to learn on. It’s well worth investigating if you’re a beginner that is looking for a digital piano to learn on. And it’s the best affordable digital piano under $500.

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Tips on Buying a digital piano under $500

We all know how beautiful the piano performances are. I started dreaming that I was able to play the piano after my parents took me to a piano concert when I was in elementary school. Well, the apartment we lived in didn’t have enough space for an acoustic piano. So, my mom bought a digital piano for me and I practiced on it for years.

If you’re a beginner who is looking for a digital piano to learn on or a player with experience in playing, but can’t fit a real piano in your place, buying a digital piano is a great idea to be space-saving and cost-effective.

But the prices and functions vary from model to model. So, what can you get from buying a digital piano under $500 and what factors should you take into consideration?

a digital piano under $500

what to consider when purchasing a digital piano under $500

In this price range, digital pianos are designed to include all the vital piano elements, such as hammer action keys, piano sound, voices and acceptable enough number of polyphony notes, etc. Some models are equipped with other useful features, such as recording function, Bluetooth connectivity, and educational features.

I’ll put the comparison table here in case you want to compare them while reading the following content.

ModelCasio PX160Roland FP-10Yamaha P-71Korg SP170Alesis Recital
88 digital Pianodigital piano under 500Affordable digital piano Yamaha p71Best digital piano under 500Beginner digital piano
Keys88 weighted keys88 weighted keys88 weighted keys88 weighted keys88 semi-weighted keys
Touch Sensitivity3 levels 5 levels 3 levels 3 levels 3 levels
Polyphony128 notes96 notes64 notes60 notes128 notes
Educational featuresBuild-in Lessons
(60 songs)
Skoove 3 month free Online Piano Lessons
Voices18 voices15 voices10 voices10 voices5 voices
Bluetooth
Recording(by using the app)
Weight24.5 pounds27 pounds25 pounds26.5 pounds15 pounds
View on Amazon View on Amazon View on Amazon View on Amazon View on Amazon

Sound Quality

Sound quality is a vital element that affects playing experiences. High-quality sound can not only make us playing experience more pleasant but also train our ‘musician ears’.

The sound quality of digital pianos under $500 may not as realistic as more expensive models, but they can satisfy most beginners and advanced amateurs needs.

Factors that influence sound quality include how the sound was recorded and what speaker system they use. In addition, the number of polyphony notes also plays an important role in sound quality. Polyphony number means how many notes can be produced simultaneously. It’s a huge asset to any players as you can play pieces with incredible feelings and expressiveness.

It works with sustain pedals, sound effects, etc. When you use sustain pedals and continually add new notes, enough polyphony number can keep all the notes sounding, otherwise previous notes will disappear. It adds the richness and expressiveness to the tunes you play. Therefore, the higher polyphony number, the better.

Key action

The key action is another element that you should consider. Most digital pianos come with weighted keys. It affects how you feel the keys while playing. High-quality weighted action gives you authentic feelings by simulating the key action on an acoustic piano. Generally, 4 types of key actions can be arranged in this order.

under 500

Hammer action weighted action is the best key action that you can feel, but surely, it also varies from model to model. Hammer action keys imitate the mechanical part of a real piano. On an acoustic piano, there is some resistance responding to your finger when you press the keys. and you can feel heavier touch when you press the keys in the low end and lighter touch in the high end.

While some digital pianos come with semi-weighted keys which are not as realistic as hammer action keys. The weight you feel is the same either in the low end or high end, like fully-weighted keys. But it’s not as much resistance as fully-weighted keys.

The key action plays a vital role in piano skills, such as finger techniques and muscle developments. In the list of best digital pianos under $500, they are all equipped with hammer action keys except the Alesis Recital. If you’re serious about learning, get a digital piano with hammer action keys. However, Semi-weighted keys also make your playing enjoyable and it’s fine for absolute beginners to start with.

 

piano under 500

Other feature

Portable and compact design  –Lots of people would take portable and space-saving factors into consideration while buying a digital piano, especially for those who are college students and need to commute from home to the colleague or for those whose apartments are not enough to fit a huge piano.

The best portable digital piano listed is Alesis Recital Digital Piano as the semi-weighted keys save loads of weight. For fully-weighted digital pianos, the weight can be down to around 25 pounds. Plus, remember to check the dimension before purchasing.

Bluetooth connectivity -It’s very useful for you to connect any smart devices or DAWs wirelessly. Bluetooth connectivity could be a huge step up from USB connectivity. Among the digital pianos listed, Roland FP-10 is the only digital piano that has Bluetooth.

Recording function –It benefits you while practicing and composing. For players from any level, you can use it to record your performance and check where you get wrong. It makes your practice more effectively. Additionally, when the inspiration strikes, it’s handy to record it quickly in case you lose it in your mind.

Well, not many digital pianos provide this function, Casio PX-160 is the only one that has a record button on the board and Roland FP-10 allows you to record it wirelessly via an app. For others, you need to connect to devices via USB cable and then record.

The number of voices  –Digital pianos in this price range normally do not offer tons of voices and rhythms as they focus on piano essentials more. But they do offer some. The standard number of voices is about 10. By using the sound of different instruments, you can get familiar with different timbres of them.

Additionally, I think it’s quite useful when you find a song may be better expressed with another instrument instead of the piano. Plus, you can explore the combinations of different sounds by using Duet Mode.

 

Conclusion

Actually, there are not many digital pianos in this price range. But there are some for you to choose and all digital piano listed come with something different and unique.

Do find one that suits your needs best. And keep it in mind, sound quality and key action matter a lot to players from all level, but of course, it should depend on your budget.

If you’re a beginner, you can check the list of Top 8 digital pianos for beginners.

Many thanks!