The Most Popular 88-Key Weighted Digital Keyboards in 2021

Dave Mostert
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It’s fairly commonplace to find weighted digital keyboards in studios of all kinds. In fact, even if you’re just after a hobby keyboard for home use, having a weighted digital piano keyboard offers a lot in terms of musical benefit. Sure, they’re more expensive than a regular 88 key keyboard, but the difference in sound quality and playability is quite spectacular. What’s more, a weighted keyboard is obviously ideal for learning piano and for composing too. 88-key keyboards offer a wide array of features to help musicians, whether it’s the budget friendly or the more premium models. For example, most will feature built-in lessons, recording features, audio synthesis and more. Of course, you can expect a weighted digital piano to be a little heavier than a regular synth or stage piano. So which are the most popular ones to buy in 2019? I’ve reviewed 4 popular 88 key weighted keyboards here. Read below to find out more.

NameCategoryProduct
Yamaha DGX-660 88 Weighted Keys PianoBest OverallYamaha DGX-660 88 Weighted Keys Piano
NektarBudget PickNektar
Kawai ES110 Portable Digital Piano BlackUpgrade PickKawai ES110 Portable Digital Piano Black

1. Yamaha DGX-660 88 Weighted Keys Piano

Our rating: 9 / 10

Yamaha DGX-660 88 Weighted Keys Piano

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Pros:

  • Excellent piano sound
  • 1/4-inch sustain pedal input
  • Long battery life
  • Famous Yamaha quality

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • The loudspeaker is not powered

The Yamaha DGX-660 88-Key Piano boasts of 100 voice memories with a stunning 40 demo songs. The piano also comes with a 5W speaker and a headphone jack. You can also quickly change functions with the convenient front panel buttons.

This digital piano also comes with a column of sliders for parameters like reverb, dual trimpots, and EQs. It has a digital readout for track and clock sync and a start/stop button. Other features include dual MIDI inputs for dual pianos so your child can jam with a friend.

What’s amazing about the instrument is its versatile power system. It uses a pair of AA batteries or an AC adapter. You can also power your pedals with a powered hub.

2. YAMAHA P71 88-Key Weighted Action Digital Piano

Our rating: 9 / 10

YAMAHA P71 88-Key Weighted Action Digital Piano

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Pros:

  • Pitch bend and modulation wheels
  • 3-pedal unit included
  • 1/4-inch audio and MIDI outputs
  • Supernatural Piano sample library
  • Realistic voices

Here’s another contender for the best digital piano under 1000 dollars.

The Yamaha P-71 is an 88-keyweighted action digital piano that was released in mid-2015, and it’s been gaining steady popularity since then.

The piano boasts of a 4.9/5-star rating on Amazon with nearly 4,000 customer reviews.

3. Casio Privia PX-160BK 88-Key Full Size Digital Piano

Our rating: 9 / 10

Casio Privia PX-160BK 88-Key Full Size Digital Piano

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Pros:

  • Full-size keys
  • Realistic placement of keys
  • 10 built-in tones
  • EQ and effects
  • 3-pedal board
  • Includes power adapter
  • Warranty

People searching for the best 88-key weighted keyboard in 2015 should certainly check out the Casio Privia PX-160BK. This digital keyboard is loaded with perks, which include a full-size key bed with a realistic, graded action housing a responsive graded hammer action key bed to the placement of the damper/sustain pedal, which has been placed next to the left of the keyboard.

Being a full size, this keyboard measures about 47.7 inches by 12.2 inches by 4 inches. It’s not robustly heavy, but it’s not cheap either, with a shipping weight of about 56 pounds, so it’s definitely a little difficult to lug around. On the other hand, the keyboard is digitally graded and feels…well, real!

4. Nektar

Our rating: 8 / 10

Nektar

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Pros:

  • 88 keys
  • Naturally weighted hammer-action keyboard
  • 8 MPC-style pads
  • 6 faders, 8 knobs, and 8 buttons
  • Compatible with all DAWs
  • Includes Ableton Live Lite
  • 5-port USB hub
  • Easy setup

It's up to you what type of keyboard you want. There's going to be something for everyone. With that said, here's some information about the Nekktar IMPACT keyboard if you're looking for a great weighted 88-key keyboard.

Nektar keyboards are manufactured by Axiom.

From the name, you might figure out that it's awesome for making beats. The keyboard is perfectly weighted to give you the best experience while playing your favorite songs and jamming out to your favorite music. You can use it with almost any program you'd like to play with. It's a channel-strip style keyboard that comes with an MPC-style control set that's super easy to use.

5. M-Audio Hammer 88

Our rating: 7 / 10

M-Audio Hammer 88

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Pros:

  • Plenty of memory combinations available
  • Compact and lightweight design
  • Affordable
  • Wide range of controls
  • Save presets for CV/Gate routing
  • USB/MIDI connectivity
  • Don’t miss the demo

Cons:

  • Few complaints about key-feel
  • Some issues with phantom power
  • Some people have commented that the software is basic, and M-Audio could improve it at no cost to the company

The M-Audio Hammer 88 is a fantastic mid-range controller that marries simplicity and functionality. It's one of the most creative additions to the lineup of attractive 88-key controllers.

The most prominent features are the high-quality keys, the slide-off lid that reveals an invaluable array of additional physical controls. You understand why it is in the top 3 most sold keyboards.

This hammer action weighted keyboard delivers a range of rich, vibrant tones through its 88-keys and arpeggiator. It fits in perfectly with the growth of other technologically advanced instruments and standards. There's a high-quality hammer action weighted keyboard delivers a range of rich, vibrant tones through its 88-keys and arpeggiator.

6. Alesis Coda Pro

Our rating: 6 / 10

Alesis Coda Pro

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(by Alesis)

Pro: * 88 key-weighted hammer-action keys

The keyboard is very noticeably heavier in one corner and makes an annoying rattle noise when you're playing on a hard surface.

7. Yamaha P115 88 Weighted Key Digital Piano Bundle

Our rating: 6 / 10

Yamaha P115 88 Weighted Key Digital Piano Bundle

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Pros:

  • Weighted keys for practice
  • Three Pedals (sustain, soft, sostenuto)
  • Solid construction
  • High-quality sound
  • Comes with a huge bundle for the price
  • Different coloring options
  • Includes an elegant stand

Cons:

  • Not a good buy for professional use
  • Of the less popular brands
  • The price is a little high for the value

This inexpensive Yamaha piano is perfect for beginners: it does everything it claims in the description. It has 88 keys with an extra four pedal keys. Unlike the newest models, it’s black. The pedal keys are a little hard to get used to, but there are three of them. Also, there is a setting that allows you to assign the pedal keys to produce different notes.

This is not a plastic keyboard, but a real deal since the keys feel very realistic. It is great for practicing and performing simple songs.

8. Kawai ES110 Portable Digital Piano Black

Our rating: 6 / 10

Kawai ES110 Portable Digital Piano Black

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(Amazon)

The Kawai ES110 features heavy, full-sized keys for a realistic piano experience. The keys feel quite like real pianos.

If you are an intermediate or advanced piano student who is struggling to find an affordable digital piano that offers authentic piano touch and sound, the Kawai ES110 may be your best bet.

9. Korg B1SP 88 key Digital Piano Package

Our rating: 5 / 10

Korg B1SP 88 key Digital Piano Package

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Pros:

  • It was the top-rated keyboards in 2016
  • It has very reasonable price
  • Digital piano with stand, headphones, and piano books
  • It has 88-key

10. Artesia PA-88W Digital Piano

Our rating: 5 / 10

Artesia PA-88W Digital Piano

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is the best 88 key weighted keyboard?

88 Key Weighted Digital Keyboards are some of the most technologically advanced instruments available. They are specifically designed for professional use and have some of the most advanced technology available.

What is the best 88 key weighted keyboard in 2021?

The Roland A-90 is a clear favorite and the best 88 key digital piano.

You can read our full A-90 review here.

What is the best digital piano with weighted keys?

The most popular 88-key weighted digital pianos sold feature the Casio PX870 as its top-selling unit and the Yamaha DGX650 sold as its runner-up. It seems the first choice of professionals for years has been the Casio PX870, with its highly rated piano key action and ¼-sustain pedaling; while the Yamaha DGX650 sold as its runner-up, with its 88 weighted action and pedaling.

What is the best keyboard with weighted keys?

Considering how far we have come in the last five years, it is amazing how much better our keyboards sound today.

The market for keyboards is very competitive. Manufacturers have been constantly improving their products, making them more comfortable, eliminating latency, and adding new features.

Just like other musical instruments, typing keyboards are an extension of self-expression, which has created a certain degree of snobbery among keyboard users. For instance, a lot of people see everything in black-and-white: they either love a keyboard or they hate it, with little in between.

The best digital key action (or weighted key action) in a keyboard is its resistance. The more resistance, the heavier the key and the more realistic it feels when you press it. Some may like a lighter weight, while others may prefer the extra resistance.

Typically, the heavier keys are those on the bottom range, while the higher keys require less resistance for even more comfort.

Should I get a 76 or 88 key piano?

This is an important question because both have their respective benefits.

If you plan to use your keyboard primarily as a piano, an 88-key model will likely be your best choice. A 76-key model is a good option if you want a keyboard specifically for production. The keys are typically lighter and the sound isn't very good for a piano-player.

The name comes from the size of the keys. On a 76-key digital keyboard, there are 76 keys. On an 88-key model, there are 88 keys. Again, the 88-key versions are considered the more professional instruments in the world of pianos.

A 76-key model is best for musicians who experience hand and wrist fatigue. In other words, if you need something to play in between chart hits, this model is for you. They're also great for synth players. These instruments are fun but aren't the choices for true musicians.

Conclusion

Are you searching for a keyboard, but you don’t know what to look for? Well, we’ve written about this topic before, but the selection and the features available now have changed, so we’ve decided to write an updated article with all the information you need about this topic. The article includes a list of the best 88-key weighted digital keyboards you can buy.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
Yamaha DGX-660 88 Weighted Keys PianoBest OverallYamaha DGX-660 88 Weighted Keys Piano
NektarBudget PickNektar
Kawai ES110 Portable Digital Piano BlackUpgrade PickKawai ES110 Portable Digital Piano Black