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#2038752 - 02/25/13 12:05 AM Learning the piano with a MIDI keyboard?
Gnafsebiffen Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/24/13
Posts: 2
Hey everyone, just made a user here to ask for some guidance and insight smile

I've been playing the guitar and bass for some years and know a fair bit of musical theory and how to read notes. Lately I've lost the will to play the guitar and it is also harder for me to do nowadays living in halls at uni. So now I have decided to do what I've wanted to do for a long time - learning the piano!

As a result of both budget and space etc. not being the biggest of luxuries these days I have been looking at MIDI keyboards as they are both cheaper and in general more convenient. So what I was wondering is if someone could give me some good advice on which keyboards I should consider and which ones to stay clear off? I have tried the M-audio Keystation 32 Controller and even for what you expect from it, it was just horrid to play!

When it comes to the size of it I've mainly been looking at the 61 key ones, as I don't think I'll be playing long classical passages, but then again I really don't know how big of a piano you would need for everyday useage. At the moment I reckon I will be trying to play old rock/blues classics (such a cliché, I know) and some film/game music (LotR and Zelda games in particular), and then later on when I feel more confident play some jazzy chords to Miles Davis. I know there is a lot of purists saying go for a 88 key one straight away, but I've also seen people saying that a 61 is sufficient to play more than enough, and even lots of classical stuff such as Bach and Mozart.
In terms of budget I am looking at a around £100/$150

So if anyone would be able to give me any advice on the matter I would be very happy and grateful!
Cheers

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#2038755 - 02/25/13 12:27 AM Re: Learning the piano with a MIDI keyboard? [Re: Gnafsebiffen]
anotherscott Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/20/10
Posts: 3442
Originally Posted By: Gnafsebiffen
I know there is a lot of purists saying go for a 88 key one straight away, but I've also seen people saying that a 61 is sufficient to play more than enough, and even lots of classical stuff such as Bach and Mozart.
In terms of budget I am looking at a around £100/$150

If you're looking to try to play with piano technique, the number of keys is not as important as having a weighted action. You can't get that in your price range, though. Even used, it will probably be tough to find below $200-$300. And they will likely be 88, because counter-intuitive as it may be, the few weighted action boards that have fewer than 88 keys will be more expensive than numerous 88s you'll find. But if you simply can't find any weighted action board in your budget, some non-weighted boards are better for piano than others. The Yamaha NP-11 is in your budget and wouldn't be a bad choice to start learning.

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#2038763 - 02/25/13 12:57 AM Re: Learning the piano with a MIDI keyboard? [Re: Gnafsebiffen]
adak Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/27/12
Posts: 282
Loc: Canada
Check out the new Kawai VPC1 that will be coming out in a month.
_________________________
Casio Privia PX-150


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#2038777 - 02/25/13 01:32 AM Re: Learning the piano with a MIDI keyboard? [Re: adak]
Kawai James Online   content
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 9679
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Originally Posted By: adak
Check out the new Kawai VPC1 that will be coming out in a month.


Good idea, however the VPC1 will exceed Gnafsebiffen's budget somewhat.

James
x
_________________________
Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.

"Richard, none of us could forget you have a CLP-990." - EssBrace, 2014

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#2038813 - 02/25/13 03:46 AM Re: Learning the piano with a MIDI keyboard? [Re: Gnafsebiffen]
spanishbuddha Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/08/09
Posts: 2469
Loc: UK
I don't think there is anything available for new and within the OP's budget, with a hammer action keyboard. Even the entry level Casio's exceed the budget several times over, and this is where I would start. Or something like the NP11 or 31 from Yamaha is closer but also not hammer action. I think second hand (used) is the way to go, or go for synth/keyboard action, or increase the spend.

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#2038815 - 02/25/13 03:50 AM Re: Learning the piano with a MIDI keyboard? [Re: Gnafsebiffen]
CarloPiano Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/21/12
Posts: 172
First you'd must be clear about what instrument do you want to learn: piano or keyboards? They feel different and they require quite a different technique to be played as far as the piano action is weighted and keyboards aren't.

About the repertoire, the 88 keys issue is not a matter of purism but a matter of need: you can play almost every Bach's work even on a 49 keys keyboard but you can't play without problems a Mozart sonata or an early Beethoven sonata on a 61 keys keyboard because of a few keys in the bass that will be missing. Romantic and XX century classical music will be just impossible to play (except for a few pieces) on that short keyboard. If your aim is playing film/games scores, I think 61 keys can be enough.

Within your bugdet and with a nice quality non weighted keyboard I sum to @anotherscott advice, Yamaha NP-11 can be nice although it's action has little to do with a piano one.

If you really want to learn piano, I would escalate the budget and would by a Casio CDP-120. It's relatively cheap, it has a weighted action and it's nice for the price.

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#2038997 - 02/25/13 12:30 PM Re: Learning the piano with a MIDI keyboard? [Re: Gnafsebiffen]
Gnafsebiffen Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 02/24/13
Posts: 2
Thanks a lot for your replies, they are much appreciated!
Will have a look at the ones suggested and maybe try some of them out if I can find them in-store.

Sorry, should have clarified; I am at the moment looking mostly at learning the keyboard. Correct me if I'm wrong, but at this stage I reckon learning the fingering and getting used to keys in general is more important than the weighted keys?

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