Digital Piano: Modern Technology, Traditional Feel

When shopping for a digital piano, it is desirable to select an instrument that creates the closest experience to playing a fine acoustic grand. There are many makes and models of digital pianos and there are many variations on what should be considered a “piano touch” keyboard. These can range from a very poor-quality spring-type keyboard to a high-quality weighted graded hammer piano touch instrument.

In the case of a fine digital piano, there are many factors that contribute to replicate the actual experience of making music on a fine acoustic grand piano. As a minimum, the instrument should have 88 full-sized keys and a weighted touch-responsive keyboard. There are several factors to consider in selecting an instrument of this type.

graded hammer

A demo model of a graded hammer set-up from Yamaha

One of these is the actual key weight referred to as “graded hammers”. A pianist would expect there to be a standard degree of key weight throughout the keyboard and for the weight of each key to slightly vary from the lowest keys to the upper register. The lowest keys are slightly heavier than the upper keys because the hammers on a grand piano vary from larger in the bass section to smaller in the treble.

Another factor is the sensitivity of the repetition speed of the keyboard. A pianist requires that each key move quickly to allow for fast repetition found in complex finger movements. It is important to choose an instrument that has three level of sensitivity to allow for repetition speed.

A third factor is the dynamic response of the keyboard. Music requires that many varying levels of volume be achieved by the amount of pressure applied to each key. The beauty and expressiveness of music are only achieved when the keyboard properly responds to each nuance required by the music.

The quality and sensitivity of a weighted keyboard can vary greatly by the experience of the manufacturer and the quality of the components and precision of the engineering. At Menchey Music you will find digital pianos of the highest quality and a staff of “product specialists” to help you choose an instrument that is sure to make your playing experience complete.