Upright pianos and digital pianos are both popular choices for those who want the pleasure of owning a fine piano, but just don’t yet have the space or the time needed to properly care for a grand. Frankly, either choice would going to be a good one. Whether it’s for a musician’s home studio, or for children looking to learn, or simply for the joy of live music at your disposal, these are both great choices.
Which is the better choice depends on what you’re looking for in terms of sound, feel, and long-term value. The short version is, you can do more with digital, but an upright piano is a much better investment.
It’s more complex than that, of course, so, we’ve got a quick guide to the benefits and drawbacks of both!
Digital Pianos vs Upright Pianos
The Advanced Features Of A Digital Piano
“Digital Pianos” are, of course, really more like specialized keyboard synthesizers. They use recorded samples of actual pianos, triggered along with your key-presses. This brings plenty of advantages for both recording artists and learners – headphones are an option, as are the standard range of electronic hookups for digital recording studios.
Also, being digital, they come with a range of sound options, and can recreate a wide range of different keyboard instruments. Unlike standard synthesizers, however, the emphasis is solely on pianos, so they offer a much more accurate sound than a regular synth.
On the other hand, except at the highest end, you won’t find a digital piano that can exactly recreate a piano. Some can do an impressively good job, but most won’t fool a trained ear. Whether this matters depends on who you perform for – they’re great for stage shows, but perhaps not concert halls.
Finally, it’s worth mention that they’re much less heavy than any “true” piano you could buy. Digital pianos are usually easy to transport, and can be taken from studio to stage with little trouble.
The Classic Appeal Of An Upright Piano
Now, if you’re looking for lasting value, and a piano that will double as a piece of art for years to come, there’s a lot to be said for an upright piano.
Uprights today feature sounds that are often nearly as warm and broad as that of a true grand piano, especially some of the taller models. Being constructed of solid wood and metal, an upright will last for decades with proper upkeep. That upkeep, of course, is also easier than with a digital model. Quality piano repair services are still more affordable than microelectronic repair.
Uprights also hold their value much better. Digital pianos depreciate quickly, due to new models coming out every few years, but an upright piano will remain a valuable and beautiful asset for years to come.
So, an upright isn’t a mere “starter piano” – it could easily become an heirloom all by itself.
Uprights are also best for learning environments, such as schools or home studios. Besides offering a great combination of big sound with a small footprint, uprights still offer a genuine piano key action. Digital models often cannot recreate the feel of a true piano action, which makes uprights ultimately better to learn on.
Two Great Choices For New Piano-Buyers
Whichever you pick, either a digital or an upright piano can stay with you and your family for years come, providing great music the whole way. Just tell us what you’re looking for, and we’ll find the perfect piano for you!
So, which did you learn on? A digital piano, or an authentic one?