What is the Best Weighted Keyboard, Piano and Weighted Midi Keyboard?

Jack Pound by Jack Pound | Last Updated: May 27, 2020

We are living in a lively world with a stream of the modern musical instrument. That means we can have many choices of digital pianos besides the traditional ones, and we are also in trouble of finding a proper one. Understanding this issue, we discovered the best weighted keyboard for you.

For more information, you may need to check out our previous articles about the top 10 best stage pianos and the best keyboard workstation. Therefore, you can have enough useful data for your learning progress.

Best Weighted Keyboards Review

For the purpose of giving you many useful facts about pianos, we had done the research already. This is the final result of the research project.

Since we have a lot of piano sorts, we separated them into three groups: the piano with weighted keys, the weighted piano, and the weighted midi keyboard. Especially, you need to know that those pianos in this topic are the full-sized one, the smaller size (like the Hamzer 61-key) does not belong here.

Best Keyboard With Weighted Keys

According to many people who have learned to play the piano, this kind of keyboard is perfect for beginners. In this content, we are going to show you the three most effective and proper for your learning progress.

1. Alesis rectical -88-key Beginner Digital Piano/Keyboard

The first digital piano which we want to introduce to you comes from the Alesis Retical brand.

We think that you can improve your skills effectively with this under-$500 product.

Alesis Recital


The digital piano has the powerful educational features which are really helpful for a beginner to learn at home.

According to the manufacturer, the digital piano contains the Skoove Premium known as the easiest way to learn how to play the piano.

You can learn all the lessons from the Internet courses without going anywhere.

It includes 88 semi-weighted keys with 128-note max polyphony. Due to its full-sized and semi-weighted form, every time you touch those keys, you will feel really satisfied.

Moreover, users can get the premium sound from this piano. The onboard features of it have five built-in voices for the best performance. There are the Acoustic Piano, the Electric Piano, The Organ, the Synth as well as the Bass.

Last but not least, there are other functional parts of this Alesis rectical -88-key Beginner Digital Piano/Keyboard. It includes USB connectivity to expand your performance and experience. It has power flexibility that means we can use batteries or an adapter to supply power for this keyboard.

Things We Like

  • Give the user premium touch feel and clear sound
  • Semi-weighted keys support the user feel better during playing
  • Features the powerful educational specification
  • Includes the online Skoove course as the easiest way to learn piano.
  • The connection with other devices is appropriate
  • The cost is under $500

Things We Don’t Like

  • The volume of this keyboard may go bad easily
  • It is just suitable for amateur use

2. Casio Privia PX160BK Full-Size Digital Piano

This product is one of the common digital pianos from the Casio brand. It has the hammer action keys called the “Tri-sensor Scaled Hammer Action II.”

Casio PX 160

As a result, the user can have an incredible touch and improve playing performance within unparalleled speed.

We can have the maximum hearing pleasure with the advanced speaker system of this keyboard.

Moreover, we can share our music with other friends due to the simple line-out slot. That means you can use external loudspeakers to connect with the digital piano for many performing purposes.

The sound of this one is truly clear and sharp due to the pure function installed. Therefore, you can get 18 authentic piano tone sounds for the best listening experience. Besides, it includes the new PX-160 technology which provides the multi-dimensional air sound.

You might be surprised by the grand sound system of this one. As far, as I am concerned, some pianos on the market provide annoying noise when playing music. On the other hand, with the remarkable sound system, this piano is far better than the other ones.

You will have better performance since you can choose various sounds effect from the electric pianos, 160’s grand piano, harpsichord and more. The manufacturer also improves the electric keyboard piano with some dynamic sounds which are the same features as the PX-5S stage piano.

Things We Like

  • The action keys are great for the user to get the best tapping experience
  • Includes the premium sound system
  • More sound effects than previous versions
  • You can connect this one with many other devices for many purposes
  • The cost is under $500

Things We Don’t Like

  • The price of this digital keyboard is not really low
  • It provides too much noise to endure

3. Kawai ES100 Digital Piano With Speaker

This is also the under $500 piano choice for beginners.

The key to this keyboard not only looks polish in the outside but also brings the best touch experience.


Yamaha ES100

You can improve your finger tapping over the keys with ease.

When compared with the two above digital keyboards, this one has a different trait which is the memory functions.

Therefore, you can save your favorite settings as well as sounds and recall them at any time.

The impeccable sound of this one is the combination of the innovative hammer action delivers and harmonic imaging technology. It has the dual and split function to increase the flexibility.

Moreover, it contains 192-note polyphony. You can easy to learn how to play with the available Alfred lessons pre-installed in this device.

Things We Like

  • It is the under $500 piano choice for beginners
  • The appearance is polished and elegant
  • The memory functions to save your favorite settings as well as sounds and recall them at any time

Things We Don’t Like

  • The output option could be better
  • Not suitable for professional performance

Top Rated Weighted Piano

In this content, we will discover those pianos for beginners. You need to stay tuned to have more information about our chosen instruments.

1. Yamaha YPG-535 Portable Grand Piano

We are going to show you one of the most popular versions of the Yamaha brand.

This is an 88-key digital piano with the “graded soft touch” design.

That means it provides weight soft keys for the best bounce-back experience.

The product features the performance assistance technology which melody mode so that we can adjust the playing style. In detailed, just by pressing the button, you can change between the Chord mode and the Chord-free mode.

In addition, the easy-to-follow LCD screen is in the middle of the keyboard. From this panel, we can see lyrics, chords as well as notation. Hence, beginners can perform better with this smart design.

Beginners can connect to your computer easily with the versatile input slot. With 30 built-in songs and the CD-ROM with 70 more, you can enhance your skills effectively.

Anyway, as the extension of connectivity, you also have the ability to connect with a computer via USB or ROM.

This product features the realistic sounding voices for the best listening experience, and that is the 361 XGlite voices.

There are various sounds from the sweet voices (trumpet, flute, pan flute as well as a soprano) to the cool voices (organ, rotor organ, and piano).

Things We Like

  • This product comes with a stand and an adapter
  • Many people claim that the usability if this product is great
  • Good instructions and easy to assemble the component
  • Comes with excellent touch feel and sound
  • It includes a sustain pedal, a stand as well as a music stand.

Things We Don’t Like

  • The price of the product is not comparable to its quality.
  • The keys of this keyboard do not serve as well as weighted keys

2. Yamaha YPD 143R Arius Series

This mimics similarly to the real traditional piano. It brings the real feel to the beginners while playing music in spite of the lower price.

The manufacturer is highly proud of the Pure CF Sound Engine installed into this instrument. The engine plays an important part in reproducing the true tone of a meticulous sample.

The GHS patented technology is great for an upgraded touch experience.

Yamaha YDP-143

Therefore, beginners get both the similar look and the exclusive weighted keys of the acoustic piano.

Moreover, you can configure and navigate with ease thanks to the Controller App for iOS smart devices. That means we can enjoin a rich graphical user interface.

The velocity of this product approaches up to 100KB/ song (or appropriate 11,000 notes). That is great for detailed nuance and subtlety during playing.

Beginners can practice one single hand or both hands with various songs onboard. We have 50 classical music songs as well as in the following “50 greats for the piano” book.

Things We Like

  • Mimic the traditional piano perfectly
  • GHS technology is great for an upgraded touch experience.
  • It serves the superb playability and touch feel
  • Brings realistic pedal performance
  • Compatible with iOS devices
  • Supply new headphones experience

Things We Don’t Like

  • It is quite expensive for beginners
  • Not for advanced musicians

3. Korg B1SP Digital Piano

This features 88 weighted keys, a stand, a three-pedal board, and a Knox bench.

According to the producer, we will get the natural weighted hammer action keys from the keyboard.

Besides the 8 accurate digitally sampled sounds, there is 120-voice polyphony for beginners to choose from.

We have three pedals attaching to the piano.

Korg B1SP

During playing, beginners use the feet to adjust the sound from damper, sostenuto to soft.

This one includes the weighted keys which support the further replication feel of a traditional piano. Moreover, if you want to change the sound effect, you can choose from seven other instruments (which include a harpsichord and two types of organs).

The sound of this one is excellent thanks to the built-in stereo sound system. In detail, the system comes with MFB servo technology for better output sound.

There are two speakers on both sides of the keyboard. They are full-range ones for the exclusive sound reproduction. The manufacturer develops the MFB technology (Korg’s servo-assisted Motional Feedback) for the best final listening result.

Things We Like

  • Perfect for practice
  • The great idea for learning, sharing, performing as well as recording
  • Includes Knox furniture and AC adapter and bench.

Things We Don’t Like

  • Some keys of the keyboard are not functional
  • There is no USB or MIDI input to enlarge the user experience.
  • Three plastic pedals are low-quality material so that they are easy to be broken.

Best Weighted Midi Keyboard

As you can see in the name of this piano kind, it includes a midi controller. The kind of piano is suitable for beginners, too.

1. Nektar IMPACT LX88

This is an under $500 keyboard with MIDI controller for beginners.

This keyboard with 88 sensitive semi-weighted keys brings to you the new way of playing music.

Nektar (IMPACT LX88+)

It has not only the elegant appearance but also various onboard features.

The MIDI controller on the keyboard has 8 hyper-sensitive backlit pads, medium tension, onboard pitch bend as well as modulation wheels. This keyboard with midi panels brings a new way of playing music just in a particular device.

It is suitable for people who want to learn both playing pianos in the traditional way and combining with modern music. For example, you can make electronic music by adding some active bass sounds to the base of music from the keys.

Moreover, this Nektar IMPACT LX88 includes four velocity curves which support users to have more songs in dynamic style. Plus, it offers three fixed velocity levels for people who do not need the common one.

You can control the entire keyboard by hand easily with the automatically authentic mapped software. Those buttons and wheels are organized on the front side of the keyboard. Therefore, we can reach each functional parts easily so that we can shift quickly to other ones to make a great song.

The connectivity of this one is excellent with many devices. That means you can connect this keyboard with your MAC, PC or iOS devices without any difficulty.

Things We Like

  • The price of this keyboard is under $500 – so it is budget-friendly
  • Includes MIDI controller for various playing styles
  • The design of buttons and wheels on the board is convenient to use
  • The instrument control and mixer control for the best performance
  • Compatible with MAC, personal computer and iOS devices

Things We Don’t Like

  • Not really suitable for people who do not need to use the midi controller

2. Akai Professional MPK249

If you are looking for an under $300 keyboard with a midi controller, this one will be a perfect selection.

As we can see, the Akai keyboard has a low-price for budget, but it has numerous functional control panels.

Akai Professional MPK249

According to the manufacturer, this is the all-in-one keyboard for various using purposes.

You can perform live or compose in the studio easily with weighted keys and trigger pads.

It has 49 semi-weighted and full-sized keys featuring pressure sensitivity. Therefore, you can have a truly satisfying feel when tapping those keys.

The control panels of this keyboard are organized logically. There are control knobs, faders, as well as switches which are eight in quantity.

Moreover, we have four bad banks so that they provide the chances of expanding the number of assignable pads. Hence, there are 64 in total.

It has a midi controller so that you cannot use it with an amp. That means you can work with your PC, computer, or MIDI sound module.

Last but not least, you can interface in a direct way within your Mac or PC with the USB connectivity. As a result, it brings to you more convenience when playing with this device.

Things We Like

  • It has a lot of good traits of a weighted keyboard with MIDI controller
  • Comes with a budget-friendly price
  • The user can use MPC workflow for productions
  • Features powerful production software

Things We Don’t Like

  • The MIDI function does not work as well as expected
  • The introduction is hard to follow
  • The manufacturer support and knowledge are less useful.

3. Alesis V49

Well, we can say that this one is a cheap but good digital piano for beginners.

If you want to be a music producer, it will be a perfect starter instrument. It has useful plug-ins and virtual instruments.

Alesis V49

It is only below $300 for a good digital piano.

This Alesis V49 has a powerful and intuitive MIDI controller in a low-priced instrument. We can say that it is really cheap and you have got the deal with this price.

Your dream will come true with the simple but useful digital piano. It has 49 gull-sized keys featuring velocity-sensitive bounce back. You can create your dynamic songs with the expanded keyboard and functional pads.

Let’s talk more about the pads. We have 8 pads on the device. They are 8 MPC-style pads which can respond to velocity and pressure.  Four assignable knobs, as well as 4 assignable buttons, also contribute to making your best dynamic effect sounds.

It is compatible with your PC and MAC. For detailed information, you can connect this one to MAC OS X 10.7, 10.8 as well as 10.9 versions. Whereas, your PC needs to be Windows 7 or Windows 8 so that it can sync with the keyboard.

Things We Like

  • Comes with a cheap price, under $300
  • The quality of this digital piano is better than that of the M-Audio Keystation (which has the same price point)
  • The key on its own is great
  • We can connect this one with many devices from Windows to iOS ones.
  • It is the best versions among the Alesis piano

Things We Don’t Like

  • The pads are not as good as the manufacturer said
  • You need to get used to pressing harder on the keys than usual

4. M-Audio Keystaion 88

This one has the same price point as the Alesis keyboard we mentioned above.

The product has a MIDI keyboard controller for the user to have more chances of mixing some dynamic factors to the song.

M Audio Keystation 88

You can both compose electronic music and play virtual instruments within an all-in-one digital piano.

The design of this piano is great for portability. The dimension of the keyboard fits to travel everywhere. In addition, it is a lightweight device.

Therefore, beginners can either play it at home or share your favorite songs with other people.

The keyboard has 88 semi-weighted keys which are full-sized and velocity-sensitive. That means you can have better experiences with this device. Besides, the sustain-pedal input is ¼ inch so that your performance will reach to expressive level.

On the front side of this keyboard, we have various functional controlling parts. There are octave-range buttons, modulation wheels, a pitch bend as well as transport control.

Beginners can play music in your computer or cell phone with ease due to a compatible input. In detail, we can connect with iOS devices from MAC OS X 10.5 to a later version. With window devices, it is compatible with many available versions from Windows XP to Windows 10.

Things We Like

  • The cost of this one is affordable with under $300
  • Great selection for beginners
  • The large sound library (2GB) from Touch Loops for better onboard sound content.
  • It features DAW control to access easily to the new way of producing modern music
  • The appearance is ultra-portable

Things We Don’t Like

  • The low-quality key makes a lot of noise when tapped
  • The sounds of keys are not at the same level.
  • The whole quality of the M-audio is not as good as the manufacturer said

Who Should Have a Weighted Keyboard/Piano?

Well, many people are having this question when talking about the topic. If you still wonder the similar question, you are in the right place! We will give you proper answers so that you can choose an appropriate item for your learning.

The Difference Between Weighted Keys And Non-Weighted Keys

Well, before answering the question, we think you need to know about the difference between two key types.

As you know, all traditional pianos have weighted keys due to how they are operating to make sounds.

An acoustic piano plays music due to the connection between the hammer and the key on a keyboard. A hammer will depend on what key you tap to strike one/two or three string(s). As a result, the string vibrates and makes the sound as we hear.

The Difference Between Weighted Keys And Non-Weighted Keys

In short, the weight of keys is technical because those keys connect to a hammer by the level type system.  It is inevitable, and the weighted key is a must-have part of the entire piano.

In modern life, we have a more digital version of electric pianos on the market. Technically, those digital pianos do not work as the old piano does. The construction of the digital keyboard does not need a hammer to make a sound. Therefore, it does need to have weighted keys for the functional purpose.

We call the common key type of the digital keyboard is the non-weighted key. When we tap on those key, we cannot feel the bounce-back experience like that of an acoustic piano. Plus, we do not need to push the key as hard as we do with the acoustic one.

For more detail, check Hammer Action Vs Weighted Keys

Who Should Use a Weighted Keyboard/Piano?

In our point of view, everyone should have a weighted-key keyboard. We highly recommend that beginners should select this type of piano for improving their skills. In other words, people from every range of age can play music with the weighted keys, from a child to mature businessmen.

We can say that the weighted keys bring to the user more advantages than the non-weighted keys. Are you curious about the fact? If “yes,” let’s take a look at the next content.

What Benefits We Will Have With Weighted Keys?

There are many kinds of keyboards which we can find easily in store or on an online website. They are not the same when we tap on the keys. But, on the whole, those weighted keys supply to us some advantages.

The main point of the weighted keys is for the playability and realistic feel. As you can see, the cost for an acoustic piano is quite expensive so not many people can afford it. As a result, people purchase digital keyboard instead and want to enjoin the same experiences as the a traditional one.

What Benefits We Will Have With Weighted Keys?

Moreover, the bounce-back feeling when we tap the weighted key is satisfied. That encourages us to practice harder and have more join with playing music.

In addition, those weighted keys of a digital piano also support the beginner to improve finger skills. Hence, you can bring your playing technique and also have more active inspiration to build a frequent practicing habit.

Type Of Weighted Keys

Well, this is a common question which comes from a lot of people. To help you find out the finest weighted keyboard, we will give you some facts though.

There are types of weighted keys for you to choose from:

Semi-Weighted Keys

This type of keys has appeared popularly in the world in recent years. A digital keyboard with semi-weighted keys comes with a budget-friendly price. Therefore, people who have a narrow investment tend to choose this one to practice playing music.

Semi-Weighted Keys

Keys With Hammer Action

According to many manufacturers, we will have a similar feel as the traditional pianos when we tap on this key. Those hammer action keys stimulate the touch feeling of fingers. In some way, they replicate the same reaction which we find on acoustic pianos.

Graded Hammer Weighting Keys

We can say that the digital piano with graded hammer weighting keys is the best weighted keyboard. You just find a digital piano with the feature only in some high-end models. Due to the exclusive design, the keyboard having this feature brings to you the truest experience as a real acoustic piano.

Weighted Keyboard, Piano, And Weighted Keyboard Buying Guide

After having the over review about many top rated pianos, we advise you to keep reading this content. We are going to share with you some tips due to experiences of other users playing music with those instruments.

Sounds Check

The sound of a digital piano is really important. It can be the main factor which expresses your music. For that reason, you should take further attention of this aspect.

First of all, you need to tap some keys on the keyboard to hear the sound coming out from the instrument. This is the best way to check the sound in person.

Sounds - Weighted Keyboard, Piano, And Weighted Keyboard Buying Guide

Many digital pianos have more functional effect sound buttons on the upper side. You need to check the sound of those buttons as well.

Second, beginners should know exactly how much polyphonies, drum, and effect sounds a digital piano has. This is necessary for you to create more dynamic and beautiful songs later.

At the first stage of learning, you may not need to combine those additional part into the practicing progress, but when you are better, you definitely need them. Therefore, you should ask some experienced one to come and check for you.

If you want the advanced performance, you need to check the ability of a digital piano to sense the speed of tapped keys. Moreover, velocity sensitivity is also necessary to create a professional performance.

Type ​Of Keys

The first thing you need to take care is about this trait. You are aiming to learn to play music, right? That means you need to look for a good keyboard with proper keys.

Many people do not check out the key of a digital keyboard before purchasing it. Therefore, they can get many unexpected issues during practice with the keyboard. To reduce this circumstance, we advise you to try playing with the key firstly.

As we mentioned above, we can find various kinds of keys for the beginners. You can choose a non-weighted-key keyboard or weighted-key keyboard as your favorite. But the weighted key may be the proper selection for you.

Type ​Of Keys - Weighted Keyboard, Piano, And Weighted Keyboard Buying Guide

We use the digital pianos with reasonable price instead of the traditional ones. Therefore, we also want this electric device to work as similarly as the advanced one. That is the reason why we advise you to buy a keyboard with weighted keys.

In the previous content, we discussed the reason why beginners should choose the type of key, right? Therefore, if you want to stimulate your skills and playing join, you should definitely pick the weighted keys.

Numbers Of Keys

Last but not least, the number of keys is also crucial. As you know, we can find various numbers of keys on the market. The range of numbers of keys is from 22 keys up to 88 keys (full-size type). The keyboard with 88 keys is similar to an acoustic piano.

You might consider choosing the number of key due to the size of the keyboard which is suitable. On the other hand, for the best playing and practicing result, we recommend you to buy the full-sized keyboard.

Onboard Features

If you are the beginner in learning playing music, this is as important as other parts of a keyboard. Many manufacturers install their learning lessons right in the software of the keyboard. Therefore, the user can learn at home by himself without going to extra classes.

It’s Your Turn To Take Action

Well, finally we came to the end of this article.

According to a lot of factors, we considered:

The Casio Privia PX160BK Full-Size Digital Piano is the best one of the first group thanks to the premium sound system, the great connectivity to many devices and incredible touch.

The Yamaha YPD 143R Arius series seems to be better in many angles for than the other two pianos. It brings the real feel to the beginners while playing music in spite of the lower price.

In the last group, the Nektar IMPACT LX88 is the best piano with useful MIDI controller, which contributes a lot for the best producing progress.

On the other hand, you can choose any instrument of the listed pianos we mentioned previously. We are sure that you are not going wrong with any of them.

Jack is the leading publisher of Fire Inside Music. He is teaching piano at a music school in Los Angeles. Since he was a teenager, Jack has had a great passion for music, the thing he enjoyed most was singing and playing the piano. He has excellent keyboard experience, works with William to help players select the best instrument to invest.