My favorite “keyboard” to recommend to piano students is the Yamaha P115. (I put keyboard in quotes because, technically, it’s a digital piano.) I own 2 of the previous model and they sound great, feel great, and are well made and sturdy. They are a great instrument for beginners because they have all of the necessary components of an acoustic or full digital piano, but are not a huge financial investment.
The Yamaha P115 is still portable like a keyboard and it doesn’t take up a lot of space. It can be played with or without headphones and it has a handful of features like a few instrument voices, recording capabilities and a built-in metronome.
The Yamaha P115 has 88 full size weighted keys, just like a real piano. You can play with the full dynamic range from soft to loud and it can produce the same expressive, musical sounds as a piano. The touch is very similar to playing an acoustic piano. None of these qualities are found in the keyboards that you see in many big-box stores.
This setup from Amazon is great because not only do you get the Yamaha P115, you also get a stand and a bench. A lot of people assume that they can put their instrument on a table and pull up a chair, but it’s really important to practice while sitting at the proper height and distance from the keys.
Several of my students have gotten started using this instrument and they have no problem adjusting to other digital or acoustic pianos.
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