Discussion Beginners Music Keyboard.

Page 3 - Seeking answers? Join the AnandTech community: where nearly half-a-million members share solutions and discuss the latest tech.

iCyborg

Golden Member
Aug 8, 2008
1,217
14
81
Weighted keys are important for piano only, but they're a drawback for nearly everything else. E.g. I have a mid-range KB and I didn't want weighted KB even though there were plenty in that price range. If I get serious about piano, I'd probably get a 2 keyboard setup...
 

whm1974

Diamond Member
Jul 24, 2016
8,278
1,369
96
Weighted keys are important for piano only, but they're a drawback for nearly everything else. E.g. I have a mid-range KB and I didn't want weighted KB even though there were plenty in that price range. If I get serious about piano, I'd probably get a 2 keyboard setup...
I know it is not a piano I'm looking to learn other then learning the basics, but picking up how to play a wider range of music.

Maybe I reading to much into this, but it seems that I can do plenty with 61 keys starting out and that will last me a long while before I need anything more.
 

nakedfrog

Lifer
Apr 3, 2001
48,018
1,560
126
I'd probably check around craigslist for a Yamaha YPT or DGX. I've seen a few older ones go for ~150, most recently a DGX-220.
 

dasherHampton

Golden Member
Jan 19, 2018
1,329
165
66
Listen to the intro of "After all" by Jarreau (and then listen to the whole song because its a great fricking song).


That level of sensitivity, inflection, and delicacy of tone can never be reached without weighted keys (and pedals, of course).
 

whm1974

Diamond Member
Jul 24, 2016
8,278
1,369
96
That is a good song. Of course it would take me long while to play at that level with the proper equipment. And I can't even sing.
 

dasherHampton

Golden Member
Jan 19, 2018
1,329
165
66
Very few people who aren't black can sing like that. Maybe Micael McDonald (who is an excellent keyboard player as well).
 
Feb 25, 2011
16,390
1,264
126
I know it is not a piano I'm looking to learn other then learning the basics, but picking up how to play a wider range of music.

Maybe I reading to much into this, but it seems that I can do plenty with 61 keys starting out and that will last me a long while before I need anything more.
"Piano" - whether it's a 21, 44, 61, or 88 key keyboard, whether it's electric or mechanical, or friggin pneumatic, is a catchall for the types of tools/instruments you use to play a variety of different styles.

What you're saying is akin to saying, "I'm not looking to learn how to use a hammer, I just want to be able to frame a certain kind of house."

What you should be saying is, "I don't want to learn how to read music or play classical piano stuff, I just want to learn how to noodle on chords and play simple chord progressions by ear to play contemporary pop music styles." Which is totally cool but I think it's confusing some people.

Get the 61-key you want, with or without weighted keys - really doesn't matter than much - and go take some piano lessons at a local music store or something. Tell the teacher what you want to do.

And, well, hell, there's never a bad time for a Wesley Willis reference so here you go.

 

whm1974

Diamond Member
Jul 24, 2016
8,278
1,369
96
So both the Casio CTK 3500 and the Yamaha YPT-360 should take me from beginner up to at least intermediate level right? How much time should plan on learning each each day?

An hour? 2 hours? Even more?
 

dasherHampton

Golden Member
Jan 19, 2018
1,329
165
66
How much time do you have?

I went through a stretch in my life where I practiced anywhere from 5-6 to 8-9 hours a day. Of course that was violin, not piano.
 

whm1974

Diamond Member
Jul 24, 2016
8,278
1,369
96
How much time do you have?

I went through a stretch in my life where I practiced anywhere from 5-6 to 8-9 hours a day. Of course that was violin, not piano.
Plenty since I'm on disability, and getting bored out of my skull.
 

Fritzo

Lifer
Jan 3, 2001
40,179
647
126
Weighted keys are important for piano only, but they're a drawback for nearly everything else. E.g. I have a mid-range KB and I didn't want weighted KB even though there were plenty in that price range. If I get serious about piano, I'd probably get a 2 keyboard setup...
Just going by advice from a pro keyboard player buddy. He tells everyone to learn piano before moving to organs/synths.
 

dasherHampton

Golden Member
Jan 19, 2018
1,329
165
66
I would say just practice until your fingers get tired. I think you probably should take at least a few lessons to get started properly.
 

Fritzo

Lifer
Jan 3, 2001
40,179
647
126
Thanks, how hard is it to pick up basic piano?
It's actually pretty easy because the keyboard is laid out logically, and you're forced to learn how to spell scales. The hardest part is learning to make your two hands do different things. I'm a guitarist and picked up enough to play a song or two in a couple of weeks.
 

whm1974

Diamond Member
Jul 24, 2016
8,278
1,369
96
It's actually pretty easy because the keyboard is laid out logically, and you're forced to learn how to spell scales. The hardest part is learning to make your two hands do different things. I'm a guitarist and picked up enough to play a song or two in a couple of weeks.
Thanks. That will be the first thing I'll start with.
 

Platypus

Lifer
Apr 26, 2001
30,896
180
106
Protip: learn good posture, get yourself a bench, and don't push yourself too hard. You can really fuck up your arms/hands if you don't have good posture. Curve those fingers, use the weight of your arms, and don't be afraid to move up and down the keyboard with your body (hence the bench). Bending your hands in weird ways to hit notes is a great recipe for tendinitis.

I'd suggest maybe semi-weighted keys instead of full weighted IF you want to do other things besides piano (like synth, organ, software patches, etc). The fully weighted ones become a huge drag if you're trying to play lead synth, but they're great on the piano. The semi-weighted is the best of both worlds imo.
 

whm1974

Diamond Member
Jul 24, 2016
8,278
1,369
96
Protip: learn good posture, get yourself a bench, and don't push yourself too hard. You can really fuck up your arms/hands if you don't have good posture. Curve those fingers, use the weight of your arms, and don't be afraid to move up and down the keyboard with your body (hence the bench). Bending your hands in weird ways to hit notes is a great recipe for tendinitis.
Thanks for the tip. I read that when I was looking up how to begin. Which is why is why I'm more inclined to get the Yamaha YPT-360 kit from Amazon over the Casio CTK3500 one since it does come with the bench.
https://www.amazon.com/Yamaha-YPT-360-Portable-Keyboard-Adapter/dp/B0793R2P2Z/ref=pd_sbs_0_3/147-1772103-9379730?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=B0793R2P2Z&pd_rd_r=d21bb66a-53dd-11e9-8938-1f91196fa3b4&pd_rd_w=ZWcb8&pd_rd_wg=dD16m&pf_rd_p=588939de-d3f8-42f1-a3d8-d556eae5797d&pf_rd_r=Z7MFPT2WZFD6JV2W76JE&psc=1&refRID=Z7MFPT2WZFD6JV2W76JE
 

iCyborg

Golden Member
Aug 8, 2008
1,217
14
81
Just going by advice from a pro keyboard player buddy. He tells everyone to learn piano before moving to organs/synths.
My dad played accordion professionally and that's what I played for the first ~20 years of my life. Neither of us learned to play piano first, and I'm still poor as a piano player :)
Real accordions aren't weighted, so using a GHS keyboard is counter-productive. Violin, brass instruments, organs, synths, they're all awkward to play on a weighted keyboard.
I just wanted to point out that weighted keyboards are a trade-off - better/more natural when being used as a digital piano, and actually worse for nearly everything else. There's a reason we have expensive non-weighted KBs like Tyros 5, Pa4X - it's not always a welcome feature.
 

whm1974

Diamond Member
Jul 24, 2016
8,278
1,369
96
My dad played accordion professionally and that's what I played for the first ~20 years of my life. Neither of us learned to play piano first, and I'm still poor as a piano player :)
Real accordions aren't weighted, so using a GHS keyboard is counter-productive. Violin, brass instruments, organs, synths, they're all awkward to play on a weighted keyboard.
I just wanted to point out that weighted keyboards are a trade-off - better/more natural when being used as a digital piano, and actually worse for nearly everything else. There's a reason we have expensive non-weighted KBs like Tyros 5, Pa4X - it's not always a welcome feature.
What is your opinion on Touch Sensitive Keys?
 

Platypus

Lifer
Apr 26, 2001
30,896
180
106
What is your opinion on Touch Sensitive Keys?
For piano it's not as interesting other than being louder, but you can get some really great depth to your sounds with touch sensitive and aftertouch equipped keybeds. It's most noticeable if you're playing synths. For example, you can get more or less out of your active LFO by how hard or soft you press the keys, which allows for more dynamic playing. I like aftertouch for synth as well, which you can bind parameters like vibrato or delay to, so after the key is pressed down, if you don't lift again and push harder down, it will trigger effects/embellishments.
 

whm1974

Diamond Member
Jul 24, 2016
8,278
1,369
96
For piano it's not as interesting other than being louder, but you can get some really great depth to your sounds with touch sensitive and aftertouch equipped keybeds. It's most noticeable if you're playing synths. For example, you can get more or less out of your active LFO by how hard or soft you press the keys, which allows for more dynamic playing. I like aftertouch for synth as well, which you can bind parameters like vibrato or delay to, so after the key is pressed down, if you don't lift again and push harder down, it will trigger effects/embellishments.
What about lighted keys? Would they help? Or is this only for kids?
 

whm1974

Diamond Member
Jul 24, 2016
8,278
1,369
96
Found this unboxing video on the Casio CTK 3500. This model sounds really nice. Wither I get the Casio or Yamaha will depend how much money I can save up by my birthday. If have I will just get the keyboard and buy the the stand and stool later.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY