Difference between piano and keyboard

A piano is an acoustic instrument with weighted keys, whereas a keyboard requires a power source to play with unweighted keys than a piano. The weighted keys on the piano build up finger strength, unlike pianos which need to be tuned regularly. Keyboards do not need to be tuned. You can change the sounds and instruments on a keyboard, adding great variety to your practice.

Are piano and keyboard the same

No, they are not the same, but the piano is a type of keyboard. The invention of the piano introduced numerous additional keyboard instruments. What makes the two almost similar is the arrangement of keys. 

The arrangement of the keys on a keyboard is identical to that on a piano, making your hand and finger movements identical from one instrument to the other. Pianos use the same width keys, and many keyboard keys are the same in width. Both have white and black keys, which is why some users ask if there is a difference. 

What’s the difference between a piano and a keyboard

Piano keys are heavier than keyboard keys. Playing piano may feel more organic, as the pressure affects sound production. Pianos have more control in terms of dynamics and musicality. On the other hand, keyboards cannot match the abilities of a piano. Many models lack the dynamic range of a piano. Sound control is on the volume knob, not pressure on the keys.

Keyboard keys are lighter than piano keys, making them easier for a beginner, especially users who have not yet built up the finger strength to be effective on a larger instrument. Pianos have better action and a weighted feel when you are playing, while keyboards with weighted keys are for students who want keyboards that feel like a piano.

The sound of a piano is produced and amplified physically, whereas keyboards are electronic. A standard piano has 88 keys, whereas a keyboard has 88 keys. However, some of them have less. When purchasing a digital piano, consider whether or not it has the full range of a standard piano.

If you are a learner,  you would want a keyboard with at least 72 keys or more so that you will not be limited in which piano compositions you can play. When it comes to cost, keyboards are more affordable. Depending on the material, the manufacturer, and the piano design, they can ask for more. However, you can often find second-hand pianos that are more affordable.

You can have a keyboard that is less than 300, but if you are looking for more features, expect to spend more. If you are unsure about starting keyboard lessons, you might consider renting a keyboard or a piano first.

What’s the difference between an electric piano and a keyboard

Electric pianos have the sound and feel of acoustic pianos, whereas keyboards, on the other hand, offer a range of sounds but it does not have the look of an acoustic piano. Digital pianos have 88 keys, the same as an acoustic piano, but most digital keyboards have 61 or 76 keys. Their keys are sometimes smaller.

The keys of a digital piano are weighted, giving them a feel close to that of an acoustic piano, whilst digital keyboards are unweighted and made of plastic. Digital pianos have better-quality piano sounds than most digital keyboards. Digital pianos may also have multiple advanced features that help to further the acoustic piano experience. 

The advanced features, size, and weight of most digital pianos tend to attract a higher price tag than digital keyboards, which are affordable. However, you will find both kinds of instruments at various price points.

Grand Piano vs Keyboard

A keyboard is played using keys, whereas a grand piano is a type of piano which involves a hammer-throwing mechanism that throws the hammers vertically upward against the strings.

The sound difference between piano and keyboard

The sound of a piano is produced and amplified physically, whereas keyboards are electronic instruments with volume options. Sometimes they require amplification to create sound. Pianos and keyboards can sound the same, but when playing,  the player can feel the sound of a piano. The speakers cannot replicate this feeling on a keyboard.

Best keyboard piano for beginners

Yamaha Piaggero NP12

Piaggero is available in two sizes. The NP12 has 61 keys, while the NP32 has 76. It is lightweight, compact, and portable. It features built-in speakers which deliver great sound and a sensitive keyboard. It is easy to play and limited to ten different sounds. 

That gives you room to master the few keys. It produces high-quality voices and comes with a simple onboard recorder to record and playback your performances to evaluate your progress.

Difference between piano and organ

A piano is a percussion instrument, whereas an organ is a woodwind instrument (Britannica.com). The difference lies in the fact that they produce different sounds when played. A piano can only sound like a piano. An organ can sound like a woodwind and reed instruments.

The piano can also produce rhythms and melodies much faster than an organ. It is for guiding the melody. An organ is ideal for a large congregation since it can fill a larger space with sound.

How many keys are on a piano

A piano has 88 keys. You can find the largest one out of 108 keys, but it is rare. The keys are into two categories. These are white keys, known as natural music notes and black keys are sharps and flats. 

Some black keys are also labeled on extended pianos to make it clear to the musician that it is extended. Some pianos have extra keys on them. They can be played on 97 keys with the108 keys known as a 9-octave piano. Some pianos have shorter keyboards that can only accommodate 44, 54 or 61, or 60 keys. Some even have fewer keys than these, but not much can be done with such a piano. They are for teaching purposes.

Difference between piano and synthesizer

Pianos are acoustic string instruments that produce sound by hitting a string with a hammer, whereas synthesizers generate sound by converting audio signals from oscillators into sound waves (Britannica.com). They both utilize a keyboard, but synthesizers can generate their sound while pianos resonate when played. Synthesizers also offer to edit and recording tools with a diversity of sound elements and manipulator functions, whilst pianos are an instrument for performances.

Rob is a musician and audiophile at heart. He plays 5 instruments. Besides music, Rob enjoys a good whiskey and the outdoors.
Robert S. Thompson
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