It’s a question we get asked every day. ‘What is the difference? Why are they called different things? Which one should I buy?’

Let me help you out.

Digital Pianos

99% of the time, the best way to identify the different between digital pianos and keyboards is by the number of the keys. Digital Pianos generally have 88 notes (or 7 octaves for the music teachers out there). This is the same as what an acoustic Grand or Upright Piano will have (e.g. your typical Yamaha, Steinway etc). digital-pianos-and-keyboards Digital Pianos are generally designed to mimic the sound, touch and response you would get from such acoustic instrument. Traditionally, they carry around 10 – 15 different sounds and a basic two-track recording system. Some models such as the Axus AXD2 have a wider range of voices to experiment with, whereas Yamaha YDP144 / 164 models are very much simplified for classical playing. Pedals are also more commonly used in Digital Pianos, with some models already supplied with them. Cabinet pianos (e.g. AXD2, YDP144) are typically known for housing 3 pedals, allowing you to play all pieces from Grade 1 to Grade 8.


To the other end of the spectrum now, Keyboards. playing-keyboard These can vary quite significantly in size, and all have different functions to suit every player’s needs. Most beginner keyboards come with a standard 61 notes, which is essentially the middle section of a full piano. This gives an ample range of notes to get your head around. Different to digital pianos, keyboards do usually focus on creating every genre of music. With a whole range of different instrument voices and backing accompaniment styles from Swing & Jazz to Rock & Roll, the choice is endless. An ‘Education Suite’ is normally included, where beginners can learn the basics of some built in songs without the need of a tutor. The Axus Keyboards are designed to get anyone off to the best start – check them out here.

So that’s the main difference between both. If you’re still not sure which one is best for you, give us a call and we’ll be happy to help.