AZ Piano Reviews

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AZ PIANO REVIEWS – The #1 Most Trusted Digital Piano Review & News Blog in the world! LOWER PRICES than Amazon and internet music stores! Free ship, no tax on most items. Don’t order anywhere until you check with Tim & Erik Praskins 1st! Email us at or call 602-571-1864



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AZ PIANO REVIEWS – The #1 Most Trusted Digital Piano Review & News Blog in the world! LOWER PRICES than Amazon and internet music stores! Free ship, no tax on most items. Don’t order anywhere until you check with Tim & Erik Praskins 1st! Email us at or call 602-571-1864

Best digital pianos under $2000 down to $1000 for 2023UPDATED REVIEWApril 20, 2024 | BEST Digital Pianos Under $2000 down to $1000 | Kawai, Korg, Casio, Yamaha, Roland and more. | There are many new digital pianos under $2000 these days and all them have something different to offer and there are definitely some that are much better than others. But how do you get through all of the “marketing hype” out there from all the manufacturers and the Amazon affiliate web and review sites so that you can actually get “real, organic, unbiased reviews” that will help you make good buying decisions on which piano would be best for your musical needs and budget?
Well…that’s where we come in! My name is Tim Praskins and I am a nationally recognized experts when it comes to playing, teaching, and knowing about digital pianos. I have been working with all the brands and models for over 40 years playing them professionally, teaching lessons on them to thousands of students for many years, and advising people all over the world on what would instrument be best for their musical needs.
Tim & Erik PraskinsMy son Erik (he is also a digital piano expert) and we give free, personal piano buying advice and can also help you purchase new digital pianos for less money than internet price, Amazon price, or store price if you are in the USA. Some of these models have recently gone up in price (or about to go up) due to increased production costs, increased shipping costs, and continued computer chip shortages.

So if you are interested in one of these pianos please let me know right away so I can help you avoid the new higher prices coming up this year and still be able to help you get a lower price as long as you don’t wait.

Digital Pianos Under $2000 to $1000 - REVIEWWe do not have a store or warehouse, but I work out of a large music studio that I own where I play & teach on acoustic & digital pianos, keyboards, synthesizers, organs, and a variety of guitars. I understand what digital pianos are supposed to do and which ones that will give you a realistic piano playing experience (based on my vast 40 year experience with acoustic pianos including concert grands as well as all the name brand digital pianos). Unlike all the other so-called reviewers out there, I have actually played all the the pianos I talk about and many more that I don’t talk about. I have literally played thousands of digital pianos and keyboards during my music career. All my reviews are my opinions and done by myself for the public at large. If you want more info on me or my piano experience, go to the following link: 

digital piano reviews under $2000
There are many new model digital pianos being offered by the top piano manufacturers these days and sometimes it can be very confusing as to what the best digital piano is for a particular price range.  I have written this blog article (and others) to help out people looking for good cabinet model digital pianos between $1000 – $2000. I also have done a review comparison of new digital pianos under $1000 which you can also read about on my blog at the following link: Digital Pianos under $1000. I consider the top digital piano manufacturers in this price range to include Kawai, Casio, Yamaha, Korg, and Roland.

In the $1000-$2000 price range, the Korg digital piano company makes 3 cabinet pianos called the LP-380U, C1 Air, and G1 Air which are very impressive for the money and I talk about them later because they offer special digital technology features no other brand has in this price range such as Bluetooth audio and special bass reflex internal sound systems that deliver a more powerful, higher quality sound than found in many digital pianos over $2000.

digital pianos under $2000 Almost all other brands of digital pianos (with a couple of exceptions) that may be available in some piano stores, on-line web sites, or consumer store web sites (like Costco in the US) are what I consider to be off brands.  I would recommend that you always try to go for the name brands if you are looking for a more realistic piano playing experience with better factory warranties.  In this blog article I will be referring only to furniture cabinet style models (including portable pianos with nice furniture stands & pedals) and only those that have an internet or regular store discount price for approx $1000-$2000  which is where most consumers want to be when shopping for a new digital piano


digital pianos under $2000

Before I talk about my “recommended” brands below, there is another company that most people have not heard of before which produces just one digital piano model and it has an internet selling price of  approx $1099. This digital piano is put out by a company called Wanaka and their digital piano is called “The ONE Smart Piano.” Basically this model is a furniture cabinet style digital piano that has just 1 sound in it…piano, and also has a digital metronome in it for timing. Another more interesting feature of this model is that it has little LED lights above the keys which show you what keys to play as songs are playing back. The way you get songs to play back through this piano and what makes this model unique, is that it relies on a special App to be used with an iPad or Android so that you connect 

The ONE Smart Piano to an iPad or Android tablet using the Smart Piano App, and then everything is done through the App (Application/program). I have played and examined this digital piano and in my opinion it is definitely overpriced for what you get. The app and the piano follow lights are cool but the piano itself is unimpressive and overpriced as compared to top brand digital pianos for the same of less money.  But I think it’s worth mentioning and you can read more about it at the following link: The ONE Smart Piano REVIEW

Korg G1 Air white digital piano***One more thing that I want to share with my readers before you read more about the digital pianos under between $1000 to $2000 below. I recently did a full review of the TOP 3 new digital pianos for 2024 in every price category. Take a look at that review at the following link because it will help you narrow down the many digital piano options out there and focus on what is the 3 best and most popular digital pianos in every price range including $500 to $1000, $1000 to $1500, $1500 to $2000, $2000 to $2500, and so on.Top 3 Digital Pianos of 2024. 

Also, I have a new review of the Top 5 Best WHITE Cabinet Digital Pianos Under $2000. This one is specific to the growing popularity of white digital pianos as opposed to black or brown. Go to the following link to read all about the best white digital pianos: Top 5 Best WHITE Digital Pianos Under $2000


Lower Price than Amazon or Internet

digital piano reviews under $2000digital piano reviews under $2000ROLAND digital pianos are overall fine instruments and that brand traditionally offers most of their furniture cabinet digital piano models for well above $2000 and they have been making digital pianos for many years. They currently produce 2 furniture cabinet digital pianos and 2 self-contained portable models (furniture stand & pedals optional) which sell between $1000-$2000 and they’re called the F701 furniture cabinet model ($1399 internet price), the RP701 furniture cabinet model ($1499 internet price), the FP-60X portable model ($1249 internet price) and the FP-90X portable model which is slightly over $2000 at ($2199 internet price). The RP701 and F701 are identical models in different cabinets and have upgrades over previous Roland pianos in this price range in past years. Roland can be a very good value for the money and are quite popular throughout the world.

Roland’s newest portable model called the FP-60X ($999 internet discount price) has a lot of similarities to the RP701 furniture cabinet model using the same key action and piano sound technology but having upgraded abilities, features, and polyphony in the FP60X. So when it comes to a higher quality portable digital piano, the FP-60X would be a good option although for me personally, the piano sounds are still too brassy and bright overall and similar to the entry level FP-30X $799 internet price) in that way.  
Although all of these models have some unique and useful digital features, it’s really the piano sound, key action, and pedaling authenticity that many people are looking for in this price range. I have played Roland home and stage pianos professionally for many years (along with other brands) and have enjoyed playing them.

Roland is not as well known outside of the electronic music business because they do not produce regular acoustic pianos like Yamaha or Kawai and don’t build many non-musical consumer products like Casio does. Roland concentrates on producing digital pianos and keyboards for musicians as well as recreational (and beginner) students & players who want higher quality technology in a musical instrument that is generally easy to use and in a reasonable price range. But it’s not about how big you are as a company but it’s about how good you are. I have detailed blog reviews on many of these new Roland models here on this blog site if you want to read more about them.

digital piano reviews under $2000 YAMAHA offers 6 current model furniture cabinet digital pianos between $1000 and $2000 starting at $1099 and going to just over $2000 and they’re called the “Arius series.” They have just come out with newer Arius models that start with the YDP-105 at $1099, the YDP-S35 at $1199, then the YDP-145 ($1299 internet price, YDP-S55 compact model ($1599 internet price), and the YDP-165 ($1799 internet price).
The Yamaha Arius YDP-165 piano is one of the more popular Yamaha Arius pianos under $2000 and sells at a US internet discount price for $1799. This piano is carried in some music stores and on-line internet dealers throughout the country and the piano key action is sturdy but unfortunately is much too heavy/stiff to play in my opinion and not near as realistic as the Casio AP-470 at $1699 or Korg G1 Air at $1799 (after $200 limited time factory instant rebate).
When it comes to comparing any digital piano including Yamaha to real pianos, acoustic pianos are organic instruments made mostly of wood parts so that’s why many acoustic piano shoppers will try out two or three of the same model acoustic piano in a store as each one can be slightly different in feel or tone.
The feel and tone is different from one acoustic piano brand to the next, so “true piano tone” is relative. The YDP-165 does have a very good improved piano tone through its speaker system but the sound is better through a good pair of headphones. It also has a 2-track MIDI recorder for separate right and left hand recording and playback which is great. As far as looks, it might be slightly better looking than the Roland as far as furniture cabinet and is offered in the simulated dark rosewood finish and matte black. 
Yamaha YDP-S54 pianoYamaha pianos are quite good overall, especially in the higher priced Clavinova series, but in my opinion don’t compete with what Casio or Kawai have to offer under $2000 at this point, especially with regard to the key action movement . The Yamaha Arius YDP-S55 and YDP-165 key actions are noticeably stiff and resistant when you press down the keys from a resting position (static touch weight), as I mentioned earlier, especially when playing lightly or softly. The Casio & Kawai  pianos are noticeably better in this price range and the key actions are quicker and move more easily in that way. Overall the Yamaha Arius pianos are very nice, are durable, and made well.  But I am not a fan of their key actions.
Yamaha improved the piano sound engine so the piano sound is more realistic in this newer Arius models and they tweaked a few other things. But most all of the other features and functions are the same as their older models including the heavy key actions, internal speaker systems, cabinets, and general functionality. I will be having my full review of these models very soon…so “say tuned” as they say.
Yamaha also has a new portable model between $1000 and $2000 called the P-525 which is priced at $1599 discount price. It’s actually a very nice instrument and does a lot of things, has many usable features, and has very good piano sounds.
Kawai CN29 digital pianoKAWAI produces 3 digital pianos between $1000 to $2000 called the ES920 portable piano ($1899 without optional furniture stand & pedals), the ES520 at $1399 internet price (stand and pedals optional), and the newer KDP120 furniture cabinet model at $1499 internet price. The newer KDP120 under $1000 is definitely a good option to investigate if you mainly want to play piano and have a satisfying and expressive piano playing experience all within an impressive looking cabinet, whether you are a beginner or seasoned player. If you have questions about this the KDP120 or any of these Kawai models just contact me.

Kawai ES920 angled viewThe very popular ES920 has been upgraded from previous models for an even more authentic piano playing experience with a very responsive fast moving key action, resonate piano sound chip, quick pedal response and long sustain time, and other new functionality. If you want to read my new review of the ES920 With its 256-note polyphony stereo piano sound chip, acoustic piano feel key action, automated accompaniment arrangements for ear training and interactive play,Bluetooth wireless connectivity, along with a big full beautiful piano sound in a nice compact cabinet, the ES920 at piano at $1899 not only looks cool (it can be a portable instrument too), it performs great for any playing skill level and I would recommend it.

It’s less expensive brother called the ES520 at $1399 is also very impressive and has many attributes that many people want when it comes to a satisfying piano playing experience in a portable digital piano.  I really like the key action in this model too. You can go to the following link to read our review on the ES920: Kawai ES920 Review.

Casio AP470 pictureCASIO has 5 digital piano models in this price range between $1000-$2000 for 2024 including 2 newer models called the PX-S5000 portable digital piano at $1199 and PX-S6000 portable at $1799, the lower priced Celviano AP-270 ($1199 internet price) furniture cabinet model, and the very popular Casio Celviano AP-470 cabinet model ($1699 internet price – left pic), and a brand new 2024 model called the AP-S450 at $1999.

The Casio AP-470 is my pick for “best bang for the buck” in the price range for around $1700 for a cabinet model digital piano. I have played both Casio models many times, but with regard to the Celviano AP-470, in my opinion the keyboard touch, response, and key movement is surprisingly good and provides a fairly realistic acoustic piano playing experience along with the keytops having a Casio proprietary synthetic ivory & ebony material for smoother finger movement and control. Go to the following link to read my latest review of the new portable model PX-S5000 & PX-S6000: Review of Casio PX-S6000 & S5000
There are some impressive acoustic piano sounds in this model utilizing 256 notes of polyphony for advanced piano sound reproduction, along with a wav file audio recorder and playback feature which you can save and load to a USB flash-drive. The pedal movement and sustain/decay time is good in this price range and the piano even has damper & string resonance which digital piano reviews under $2000 produces the natural echo and sympathetic vibrations found in a real acoustic piano when pressing down on the damper pedal or playing the notes and hearing the strings vibrate. 
Other features include duet four-hand play, layering, splitting, transpose, and many other cool things. The control buttons are fairly user friendly and intuitive to use and Casio has also included some advanced tech features like USB CoreMIDI connectivity (very nice for plug & play connection to iPad and computer) as well as having a proprietary controller app to be used with a tablet so that you can control the piano by your color touch screen of your personal device.
The AP-470 audio speaker system is surprisingly powerful at this price and includes four speakers going through 40 watts of stereo power with a lid opening feature which allows the sound to project more in an acoustic piano fashion. The AP-470 also gives you the sense you’re sitting in front of a real piano because of its design and that it looks very attractive in its furniture compact cabinet with sliding key cover and front designer support legs. 
So for its $1699 internet discount price, this piano is a very impressive package and a great “bang for the buck” as far as I am concerned. Go to the following link to read my Casio AP-470 review: Casio AP-470 Review.  
Korg G1 Air pianoKORG is a Japanese keyboard, music products, and digital piano company more well known to pro keyboard players around the world since that’s what Korg’s target market has been for decades. However, in just the last few years Korg has revitalized their home digital piano division that they had about 25 years ago and come out lately with three newer home furniture cabinet digital pianos under $2000 down to $1000 that have really caught my attention. Those pianos are called the LP-380U at $999 (after $350 limited time factory instant rebate), C1 Air at $1599, and G1 Air at $1999, and I have played all three of them.
My initial reaction to the lesser known Korg company trying to compete with the other main guys in this space was that Korg likely had a long way to go...however I was very wrong on that assumption. These 3 digital pianos are very impressive, especially at their lower prices under $2000, The G1 Air is my favorite of the 3 models, although it is at a higher price range than the other 2, but for the money the piano sound, expression, key action response, and pedaling dynamics and control the G1 Air offers is extremely impressive. 
Also the sound coming through its 4-way internal speaker system is 1st rate and in fact noticeably more authentic and full sounding than what Yamaha, Roland, and Kawai offers in this same price range. To learn more about these impressive Korg models, particularly the G1 Air, please read my review of the G1 Air digital piano at the following link: Korg G1 Air Review


Digital Piano ranking chartMy 1st choice for a furniture cabinet digital piano under $2000 would be the Korg G1 Air digital piano at $1999 discount internet price. With a very impressive, realistic graded weighted key movement and resonate acoustic piano tone with better tonal dynamics & color along with its other useful features, this one is definitely worth the money and it’s out in front of other digital pianos under $2000 in my opinion when it comes to the piano playing authenticity. 
It looks good in its compact contemporary furniture cabinet and once you play and hear this Korg G1 Air your ears will go “WOW,” that’s amazing and your fingers will also say “”WOW” this feels like a real piano key action. It really is that impressive and in our opinion should be selling for more like $2500…it’s that good, especially as compared to other brands and models closer to $3000. The Korg G1 Air does not have a lot of “bells & whistles” on it like many other digital pianos out there. When it comes to a real, very convincing acoustic piano style playing experience, the Korg G1 Air is very impressive in this price range
Kawai ES920 with optional furniture cabinetMy 1st choice for a portable digital piano would be the Kawai ES920 at $1899 (stand & triple pedalbar optional). It also offers an impressive and noticeably realistic piano playing experience with some fun and useful “bells & whistles, and it has a smaller footprint as well. The optional furniture style stand and triple pedalbar do make the ES920 look more like a small piano when you put them altogether. But unlike more traditional furniture cabinet digital pianos, the Kawai ES920 does not have a sliding or folding key cover to cover up the keys.
Casio AP-470 pianoMy 2nd choice for a furniture cabinet model would be the Casio AP-470 ($1699 internet price). This is my 2nd choice for a furniture cabinet model for a few reasons including it’s realistic sound, key action, internal speaker system, abundant features, and great looks.  It offers a lot for just $1699 including a height adjustable bench, a lid that opens to let out the sound more like a small baby grand piano, and this model has a huge 5 year in-home parts & labor factory warranty. The Casio AP-470 comes in 3 attractive cabinet colors including matte black, matte walnut brown, and matte white.

AP-S450 left side viewMy 3rd choice for a furniture cabinet piano is, again, a Casio model. This one is called the AP-S450 at $1999. This model just came out and has some brand new features not seen before on Casio digital pianos and not available on other brands and models of furniture cabinet under $2000. The most noticeable new feature is a hybrid-wood fast-action key action. This new key action uses actual natural spruce wood combined with resin for the keys. This “hybrid key action” gets you closer to what a real piano key action feels like and the key movement on this piano is responsive and comfortable to play.
The new Steinway grand piano reproduction samples in this model are convincing and allow for more expression and overall natural resonances. This new model is more upscale in appearance and has enough cool features and functions to keep anyone busy and adding to the overall piano playing enjoyment. Actually, this model could be ranked in the #1 position for a more compact furniture cabinet digital piano along side with the Korg G1 Air, as they are exactly the same price. Please take a look at my recent review of this new model so you can know more about it: Casio AP-S450 Review
digital piano reviews under $2000 *Just so you know, there is no precise or totally impartial digital piano rating system (like stars, check marks, numbers, etc) as some people on the internet would have you believe…and that’s why I don’t do it. There are just too many variables in piano touch, tone, pedaling, features, and looks. In fact there are some so-called “reviewers” out there who have no idea of what they are talking about, they say things that are just not true at all, they rate cheap keyboards along side of digital pianos which is ridiculous (keyboards are not digital pianos), and what they report is only so they can link you to an Amazon site to make THEM money if you buy something. 
If you see something like that (Amazon selling links from Fake Piano Reviewers…and there are many), then I recommend you run away from those people as they are not there to help you, regardless of what they say otherwise. 
Most other so-called reviewers have never played those digital pianos, and in fact may not even know how to play a piano at all. Some do, but most don’t. I always recommend that you do your homework before you buy because as I said, many of these pianos we recommend may be a good choice for you, but it just depends on what kind of music you like, what your musical goal is, what you want the piano to look like, and how much you want to invest in it. Please contact us before making any buying decision as we do not charge for our advice and we do this as a labor of love:). Plus…we can definitely save you money!
Please contact us directly for LOWER PRICES, Free shipping, No tax. or 602-571-1864

0 Responses

  1. Thanks, Tim, for the super analysis of these different brands and models. I am looking for a digital piano and your information is very helpful.

  2. Could you tell me which of these you would recommend for a choir? I am in an elementary school but I have always had a Roland digital in the schools I have taught in. I would like one that has a good quality decent speakers and recording capabilities so that I can record myself and they playback so I can conduct choir.

  3. Hi Tim,

    I am a serious amateur pianist looking to sell my Yamaha acoustic piano (P22) and buy a digital piano instead due to my living situation (apartment with thin walls). I'm a fairly advanced pianist (I'm working on the 2nd ballade (chopin) currently) and need the best possible realistic digital piano under $2000. Is the CE220 still your recommendation (for 2013 March)?


  4. tim please i need your help !! im just starting to play the piano, and i dont know anything about pianos, but after saving some money for a long time i have 2.000 us to spend, is a great investment for me so im afraid of buying something wrong, in my country there is a used samick js-15 owner says is in perfect condition about 3 years usage, he is asking 2.000 us, and the other option is the Kawai CE220 that you recommended, i will be playing classical music, which one is the better option?, i appreciate your help thanks very much.

  5. Thanks for putting all of this information together, Tim! It's exactly what I needed 🙂 I'm looking for an upgrade from my Casio Privia PX700 (which has lasted me about 8+ years and counting!)

    I'm going to take your notes shopping with me 🙂

  6. The Casio AP650 is a much higher priced version of the Casio PX780 with identical functions and key action but with 256-note polyphony instead of 128. As far as how the AP650 compares with the CE220 directly, please email me and I would be happy to give you a detailed explanation.

  7. The AP650 is available only in a select few pianos stores in the US and not on-line. It is the upgraded traditional cabinet version of the lower priced Casio PX780 but with 256 note polyphony and a slightly more powerful speaker system. The PX780 is actually the better value and is available on-line too.

  8. Tim, I was looking for a piano for my three kids and me. Thanks to your reviews I am now feeling comfortable to choose one although I have never played a piano. This is a very passionate page and I really admire your engagement.

    Best regards,

  9. Tim, Thanks a lot for your reviews. actually I was very confused which digital piano is best for me within my budget under $2000 and after reading your review , I decided to buy Casio privia 850. I ordered it from and can not wait to receive it and play

  10. Tim, Thank you very much for your great reviews and comparisons. I'm deciding between the Yamaha YDP-V240 and Kawai CE220. Since I haven't seen either one in real life, would you mind briefly comparing their cabinetry detail, finish, keyboard cover and overall elegance? Which would look best in your living room or den?

  11. They are two totally different instruments and in my opinion the Kawai is far superior in almost every way incl cabinet, structure, design, color, and realistic playability. If you want more info and live in the US you may contact me direct by email

  12. Hi Tim, great blogs. Keep them coming. Now that Roland rolled their FP-80. Which has the closest true piano feel/best key action between Kawai CE220, ES7 and Roland's ? An upright piano is out of question since access to our attic is a narrow circular stair.

  13. There is no "true" piano feel in the world of pianos. Even high quality concert grand pianos differ in key action feel and sound, that's why there are a variety of brands. One is not necessarily better than the other…just different…like green vs blue, oranges vs apples. All three of those pianos you mentioned are quite good but they are different from each other with one offering something different than the other. You could likely be happy on any of them so it's just a matter of taste, budget, cabinet design or portable, functions/features, etc. I personally could be happy playing on any of them. If you have other specific questions you can email me directly.

  14. I have an old 1990s yamaha clp142. My daughter is almost 7, been playing almost a year, I can play a bit myself as well although I never performed and prefer other instruments.

    Today we tried the kawai ce220, cn24, casio px750, roland rp301r. The store salesman said the cn24 is by far and away the best seller there. I definitely preferred the action feel to the ce220 myself. I thought the roland was fairly nice action wise, my wife didn't like the sound much. Something about the px750 (the px series in general even) doesn't feel quite right. Something about the key return? The only yamaha I've tried that felt like an upgrade over my clp142 is a yaris ydp181.

    My daughter didn't really have much of an opinion about any of them. With other kids starting in a couple of years we may need to add a second piano for practice time. Living in desert conditions I'm not really thrilled with getting something acoustic even though our aging piano teacher insists that acoustic is a must have (I don't totally agree and I learned on an acoustic).

  15. Hi Tim – thank you for the thoughtful and well-written reviews. I am a professional pianist and organist. I recently moved and my piano was unable to be moved up the circular narrow stairway and I have gifted it to a young girl in my church who is very talented but unable to afford a piano. That said, I'm utterly lost without it. I'm looking for the best digital piano I can get that sounds as much as possible like an acoustic grand, and feels as much as possible like one (and I do realize all pianos have different touches). My budget would be anywhere up to $2,500. What do you recommend? I don't care about any bells and whistles (other than that it would be nice to play in an apartment setting in the middle of the night (i.e., Beethoven at 2:00 am). Other than that, I don't need accompaniments, midi, different voices, etc. I don't even care about a display so to speak. I just want to feel like I have a piano again (as much as that can happen with a digital). What would you recommend? Thanks!

  16. Hi Tim! Thanks for your detailed review! the Casio it is. My 6year old daughter is beginning to learn the piano. With this insturment I'm sure she will have a lot of fun in the years to come…. thanks again for your advice! best regards, Max

  17. Hi Tim,

    Thank you so much for your great review. I have been reading them for a month and check some out in the store. I almost set my mind to Casio PX850 due to its connectivity, compact, 256 polyphony. But then I am introduced to Kawai CN24. I was told Kawai CN24 has smoother playing experience. But according to your review, KDP90 is very similar and much cheaper.
    I am trying to get a piano which will give my 5 year old son a great playing experience up to grade 5 if possible and can help to make his rhythm right. Most of the piano teachers suggest me to buy acoustic piano even just a second hand one. But I hope digital piano is good enough for up to grade 5, its much prettier, smaller and no maintenance.
    Hope you may be able to assist me with a decision. I don't know piano but look forward to learn together with my kids.
    Many thanks and best regards, Angela

  18. Hi Tim,
    Love your work, thanks.
    I am looking to buy a digital piano in the under $2000 range, but wondered if there was much in the non-cabinet style that could be recommended? I maybe in a 'between' type scenario, as I would value something which is also a good synthesiser (or has good synth sounds), but am looking for the best piano sound/s (for my price range) and the feeling of authentic responsiveness from the key action.
    if you had any comments on the above, they would be most gratefully received.
    Thanks again for sharing your experience.

  19. Hi, Tim!Congartulations for this very useful article.I`m An advanced piano player and I`m searching for a good digital piano with similar sound to acoustic piano as more as it possible and in the same time with low price-under 2000 $ because now I study music far from my home town.So, I tried some pianos but now I`m more confused because i`ve heart so many different opinions and etc.My qestion is – Is it important for the overtones the number of the tones polyphony? For the example Cawai CN 24 has 192 tones polyphony, Yamaha YDP – 162 has 128, Casio XP 850 has 256, Kurzweil MP-10 has 64.These are the models that i`m choosing from, so please help me!

  20. Hi Tim, Thanks for your work ! I'm from Italy. I studied piano for years on a bluthner grand piano in the house of my parents, but in my house I've only a poor yamaha keyboard. Now I want to buy my first REAL digital piano. It must have a classical design (yamaha/kaway) and a good sound, enough similar to acustic piano. I play modern music for my own pleasure and in my house, sometimes with the headphones but more often without them. I like nyman, sakamoto, einaudi. I'm not interested in accompainment/ rhytms ecc. I'm confused and I'm going to the shop to try: ydp162 / kdp90 (1000€) , clp525 / cn24 (1250€), clp535 / cn34 (1.580€). I really would like to buy a clp 535 but do you think the difference of price is justified?. 600 € is not little… Thank you for your replay.

  21. Hi Tim,

    Thank you for your reports!

    I have an (old) Yamaha upright piano, which in fact I can not play often as I normally arrive late at home. Therefore I'm planning to buy a new electric piano, which I can play with headphones and it is also portable, so if necessary I can take with me to a friend's house or during summer holidays.

    I've tried Kawai ES7 (which is around 1323 Euros) and Yamaha P255 (which is 1212 Euros). I’ve also tried Roland FP50/80 but didn’t like the FP50 and the FP80 is too expensive. My problem is that the trial of the ES7 and the P255 was inconclusive as it was very little time and I had to try them in separated shops (no side by side test). Can you give me your opinion regarding what will be the best choice?

    Thanks in advance,


  22. Hi i would like to start playing piano and i have got 2 offers for second hand digital pianos kawai cn3 and kurzweil mark pro twoi. Which one is better in realistic piano sound and touch key response?

  23. The Kawai ES7 is substantially upgraded in terms of realistic key action, piano sound, and pedaling response over the other pianos and is worth the price in that regard.

  24. I am strongly looking at the px860 now due to your review. Was looking at the kawai es100 or kdp90 before but you really seem to like the Casio. As a beginner do think it's the clear choice? Also, what do you think of in terms of durability of the Casio? I have read people complain of loud clicking keys on the px850, have you witnessed this?

    Also, I have a question about the cn25. With its superior rhiii key action why did you not out it above the ce220 and es7 in your review? Thanks for everything.

  25. Hi, thanks for the great overview. I'm a little puzzled why in your list of Yamahas you do not mention their Clavinova line, such as the CLP-500 series? I tried one of them and it sounded pretty good, though I have a Roland FP2 and like it a lot. What are your thoughts on the Yamaha CLP535 compared to the RP401R for instance?

  26. The Yamaha Clavinova series retails at well over $2000 with the basic model CLP slightly over $2000. They are only sold in piano stores in the US and not available on-line. Yamaha does not list internet discount prices so there is no specific price a person can buy one for under $2000. The basic model CLP525 is overall not much different than the Yamaha Arius YDP162 in terms of digital features except for the key action having 3 sensors instead of two. Even if the basic Clavinova 525 were priced below $2000 on the internet, I would still put it behind the models that Kawai, Roland, and Casio offer for the money under $2000.

  27. Kia ora from New Zealand,
    I am an adult beginner (I don't think my Grade 2 level from 35 years ago counts for much now!)
    We have 4 options available at the same price here in kiwiland.
    Korg LP380, Kawai KDP90 , Yamaha 115B or Casio PX860BK.
    Each salesman told us theirs was the best!
    Beyond "my choice, what feels nice and looks pretty" Are there obvious differences here we are missing? Can you gives us a top 2 from which to pick?
    Thank you so much for being so non-biased and available from so far away!

  28. All four pianos would be just fine for a beginner and are good brands. The Yamaha P115 is smaller & portable and significantly less money in the States than the others, so I am not sure why that model is in your list? Nevertheless, My preference would definitely be either the Kawai KDP90 or Casio PX860 with regard to what I believe offers the most piano playing authenticity along with useful features.

  29. Hello Tim,

    I can't tell you how much this blog is helping as I research digital pianos. I play, but haven't had a piano in the house for several years. Now, my children are beginning to get an interest in learning, and I want something that is authentic and that I will also enjoy. I've been considering many of the models listed on this page. I live in very rural AZ, and many of the models I am interested in are no where near me. For some, the nearest are 500 miles away, so demoing them may be impossible. I am looking for the best sound and feel. Currently, I am looking at the Casio PX860, the Kawai CE220, and the Yamaha YDP162. Of all these, if someone were to offer to give you one of the three, which would you prefer? 😉 Thanks very much.


  30. Hi Tim,
    I also sent an email to you regarding to this question, thanks for the information about the Kawai pianos.

    I wish to know is the difference between Kawai CE220 and CN25 noticeable in terms of the Key action? which one is more authentic compare to the real acoustic piano? I know the CE220 uses AWA Pro II long wooden key and it is the predecessor of the GF keys, but the CN25 uses RH III key which is a later and newer version.

    I lean to buy the CE220 because i guess the key action might be better. but in case the CN25's key action is equally good. I will buy the CN25 because it offers the extra features like the piano lessons.

    one last question: I live in north Philly area, do you ship piano to there and how long it takes for the shipping?

    Thanks a bunch !

  31. Hello Tim,

    I am wondering why in this class you did not include the Yamaha P255 and how it compares say to the Kawai ES7/8 ? We are looking for a portable piano with a good hammer action (therefore not Yamaha P115) and if possible USB recording option (which excludes Kawai ES100). Thanks in advance.

  32. Hello Tim,

    I am looking for a piano for my 9 year old who has been playing for two years now and would like to continue. I am looking at Yamaha YDP 142 and Casio PX 860 as possible options as both of them are in the same price range.Which one is better in realistic piano sound and touch key response?
    Thanks in advance!!

  33. Hello Tim,
    I am looking for a piano for my daughter(7 year old).She is playing for three months .I am looking at Kawai CN 35 and Kawai CA 17.which one is better in realistic piano sound and touch key response? Which I bay?

  34. Hello Tim,
    First of all thank you for your reviews that help a lot in decision making.
    I’m currently looking for a digital piano for my daughter (9 years old), and I do not want to buy a piano that I will have to sell in One year because it is not good anymore.
    So I’m looking for a piano that sounds as good as possible with the most accurate touch, and with the possibility to plug a computer for learning lessons (even if my daughter is going to have a teacher), and honestly I do not care about the look (either with very beautiful cabinet or with light cabinet like ES8). Finally my budget was originally 1500€ almost 1600$$. My daughter has been impressed with the electronic features and potential digital effects even if I do not think that we will use them a lot.
    After different investigation I was looking at the Casio AP650. However I’ve read reviews where people were complaining about the “touch”, and/or the Sound (plastic/electronic). I know that this is not your position…. 8-).
    From What I’ve read in your reviews and what I can possibly listen in shops, I’ve a selection….
    In France I’ve the opportunity to get the below pianos at those prices.
    1. Kawai ES8 (is around 1800€ with cabinet +all what is require to play …) (2000$$)
    2. Casio AP650 (at 1140€ ==1265 $$) !!! (including headphones +stand) (And I found second hand around 1000 $$)
    3. Kawai CN35 (1600€ ) (==1775$$)
    4. Roland HP504 (is at 1630€ == 1800$$)
    5. Roland RP401R (1150€ ==1265$$)
    6. Casio Px 860 (950€ == 1100$$) – I do not think that this piano is in the course to be compared with others.

    My question is obviously, If I stick to my original budget and considering your reviews, the Casio is an excellent choice. But now, if I increase my initial budget by 300€ I can enter into another dimension If I understood correctly your reviews. Do you confirm that the Kawai CN35 or the Roland HP504 are Really above the casio AP 650. And finally If I go up to 2K$ I will have the saint Graal !
    Finally based on what I wrote earlier, what would you recommend to me ? (considering that this is a first electronic piano for a beginner blablabla….). I'm fine to go go up to 1800€ (2k$$) which allows me to get the CN35 or the Roland or the ES8.

    Thanks for your help and support. Gilles

  35. Hello Tim, I'm deciding between the Roland RP501 and Yamaha CLP525 now. What do you think of the 2? This is my first time buying a digital piano, I've played a Cramer since young. My feel is that the Yamaha felt closer to a real piano though I didn't really like the thudding sound for fast pieces. The Roland felt easier to play though somehow I have reservations. Would appreciate your views on these 2 please. Thanks!


  36. The Roland key action is a bit noisier than the Yamaha but the Yamaha is noticeably stiffer to play than the Roland. So it is a matter of personal taste however I much prefer the Roland key action for speed and response and the extra "noise" does not bother me. Acoustic piano key actions are also noisy but you cannot hear the noise because acoustic pianos are always so loud. There are other options though and if you email me I can give you more info and advice.

  37. Your review says AP650 before the DP603 which is similar to the HP603. Does this mean the AP650 is better than even the HP603s?

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