Best Stage Pianos of 2020 – Ultimate Review

Digital pianos came a long way since Yamaha made a first step towards simulating both an acoustic piano sound in a digital format and keyboard feel. Eventually, they made a pianist’s dream possible, to have a real piano in a much portable format. Such a digital piano is called the stage piano.

Comparison Chart of the Best Stage Pianos

IMAGEPRODUCT
  • Equipped with creative piano filters
  • Splitting features with crossfade option
  • Improved double memory for enhanced performance
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  • Intuitive and detailed front panel layout
  • Upgraded version of the best Korg stage piano
  • Eye-candy stage design that comes in 2 color variations
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  • Bets for the Money
  • Equipped with 550 versatile tones and instruments
  • Accurate reproduction of grand concert pianos
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  • Best Roland Stage Piano
  • Includes a dedicated acoustic piano sound engine
  • Strong sound engine with 128 polyphony voices
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  • Best Yamaha Stage Piano
  • Features three premium grand piano voices
  • Super seamless voice changing functions
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  • Best Digital Stage Piano
  • Affordable hybrid stage piano
  • Effect generator taken from premium models
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  • Best Stage Piano Under $1000
  • Texture-printed keybed for authentic piano feel
  • 5 types of fixed-touch sensitivity keys
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Stage Piano vs. Digital Piano - Comparison Overview

It’s very easy to confuse those two categories as they look similar. Lets check what’s the same and what’s so different, then.

Piano Sound

They both excel in delivering realistic piano sound. Depending on the price range they do it either good or amazing.

Keybed

Another feature that both models treat with extra care. Some stage pianos lower their price for softer and more fast-response keybed.

Main Purpose

Stage piano is made for, obvious, stage performance. While some mid to premium digital pianos can be used the same way, they come with features more oriented towards home use.

Other Sounds

Stage pianos may come with various additional sounds that can be studio-grade quality especially sounds like electric piano or organs. Some models even offer an excellent arsenal of synth sounds, too. While digital pianos can have such sounds, too, they usually aren’t a match for stage pianos of the same price range.

Design

Stage piano can be easily mixed up with keyboard synthesizer while digital piano resembles more to acoustic design. Some even take a step further and design digital piano like a full concert grand design. Stage pianos are much more portable units.

How to Choose Stage Piano

Now that you’re sure you’re definitely looking for a stage piano, lets give you some tips for selecting the right model:

Sound

Stage piano can be more than just a digital device that plays piano sounds.

There are hybrid models that provide you with sounds and options that you would expect only from a keyboard. But, if you’re quite sure you will play piano only, you can ignore such models and invest money in those with better piano sound quality.

Portability

If you are flexible about keybed you can trade it for a couple of pounds less on your back. You also may find out that premium keybed isn’t so audible in live performances. 

But if the keybed difference affects your playing experience, don’t worry - some models offer the same keybed at smaller size, too. 

Extra Features

Modern stage pianos always come with a USB-MIDI port so they can be used as a MIDI controller. You could easily find models that offer the same controls like a regular MIDI keyboard controller, except the stage piano will provide you with a significantly better keybed. So, if you use a computer every day, you can save your budget by disregarding onboard sounds and go towards virtual piano software.

Quick Take: 
Top 3 Picks

Review of the Best Stage Pianos

We got you covered with the stage piano basics, so let us introduce you to the current offer now.

Nord Stage 3 88-Key Digital Piano with Fully Weighted Hammer Action Keybed

PROS

  • Improved version of award-winning piano engine
  • Available in 76 keys and 73 synth-action keys as well
  • Most options available straight on front panel interface
  • Improved synth engine with new options and Moog filter
  • Some of best organ and electric piano sounds ever made on the keyboard

CONS

  • Quite expensive stage piano
  • Atypical pitch band position might not be for everyone

What Recent Buyers Report

It seems like every part of this keyboard is receiving praise. Everything seems to be seriously upgraded from the last version and they especially like how you can change presets without sound interruption. And they especially like the interface layout as you don’t have to drive through menus to reach basic options.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This product was made with all about sound quality in the first place. Instead of offering you many options they decided for fewer but designed perfectly. Everything was designed to improve your playing experience and it’s not just the best stage piano but the best organ and electric piano keyboard as well.

Who Will Use This Most

It was designed for full-time professionals that work live or as session players. While beginners would know how to use it, price might be an overkill for them. And in case you don’t like hammer action keybed, there is a 73-key model made with synth action key response.

Bottom Line

If you’re looking for a pure and uncompromised sound and playing quality, look no further. Nord delivers experience that surpasses not just acoustic piano but matches some of the best electric piano and organ models out there as well.

Runner-up:
Korg SV-2

Korg SV2-SP 88-Key Stage Vintage Piano

PROS

  • Improved new model version of Korg best stage piano
  • There are versions with 73 keys and with built-in speakers
  • Beautiful crossover design between digital and stage piano
  • Full front panel control packed in a very intuitive and detailed layout
  • Equipped with 12AX7A Tube Valve to get some additional warmth for your electric piano performance

CONS

  • Could provide more sound variations at this price
  • Keybed could be upgraded from the previous version

What Recent Buyers Report

People definitely can tell a difference that tube drive provides for this model. They find a velocity curve to be quite responsive and behave accordingly to the acoustic piano. However, the keybed experience is kinda biased. Some praise it, while others think it’s quite an average. We suppose you need to check for yourself.

Why it Stands Out to Us

It was designed differently than other products, resembling more of an upright piano interface. Sound effect options are placed very conveniently in the front panel and with more detailed settings than other stage pianos on the market. And thanks to the line input, tube drive can be used with external instruments as well.

Who Will Use This Most

Studio musicians who would appreciate on-board warmth for rhodes recording. And if you need a smaller size, Korg offers a portable 73-key model with the same sound features and keybed type that would fit any venue. The same goes in case you would prefer a stage piano with in-built speakers.

Bottom Line

If you’re looking for a stage piano that will make a difference for your live appearance, this Korg model could make you look like you’re playing a real piano while delivering you some beautiful piano and Rhodes sound.

Best for the Money:
Casio PX560BE

Casio PX560BE 88-Key Digital Stage Piano, Blue, Digital Piano

PROS

  • 5.3” touch screen display
  • Hybrid model that gives you keyboard workstation features
  • 550 sound presets, 220 rhythms and sound effect generator
  • Hammer action keys that reproduce concert grand piano feel
  • Built-in speakers, stereo and headphone output, USB connection and additional line and aux input

CONS

  • Pitch and mod wheel should be on board
  • Only 2 pedal inputs excluding volume pedal

What Recent Buyers Report

Buyers see this model as more than just a stage piano. Besides excellent sound, they are amazed by the quality of other instruments, especially at this price. The touch screen seems responsive and intuitive and they especially praise that it comes with built-in speakers.

Why it Stands Out to Us

Keybed action is exceptional. It can match the response of some much more expensive models. We also love that while being a stage piano it provides hybrid features of other models so it comes with built-in speakers like digital piano and sounds and features you would expect from a keyboard workstation.

Who Will Use This Most

Everyone can use this instrument. Its sound quality is more than semi-pro so even if you’re a complete beginner you can still invest in this stage piano and rest assured that it will have enough quality and options with you for a long while as you evolve as a musician.

Bottom Line

This Casio stage piano cuts short only in those areas which are not so important while leaving piano sound and keyboard feel at premium grade. Such a perfect example of bang for buck purchase and what modern stage piano can do.

Best Roland Stage Piano:
Roland Premium RD-2000

Roland RD-2000 Premium 88-key Digital Stage Piano

PROS

  • Wonderful sound that allows you detailed editing
  • Full MIDI support with additional two mod wheels
  • Flagship quality of other sounds thanks to SuperNatural engine
  • Premium keybed with wooden parts structure for realistic piano feel
  • Customizable expansion slots where you can download more sounds

CONS

  • It could come with double headphone outputs
  • Might be too wide because the pitch bend is placed aside

What Recent Buyers Report

People are stunned by this model and refer to it as a game-changer. They comment that it offers many more features than they can wish. Both professional piano teachers and newbies are in love with the Roland V-Piano sound engine. The only drawback is that organs are not as good as other sounds.

Why it Stands Out to Us

V-Piano technology allows you to make some serious in-depth editing of your sound. Also, it’s a hybrid model that comes with a bunch of other SuperNatural sounds. especially vintage electric pianos and organs and wonderful sound effect generators. Plus, physical controls are exceptional and match some of the best keyboards options.

Who Will Use This Most

It can be used by everyone for everything and we’re not kidding. Studio recording, live performance, high-quality audio interface, MIDI controller with a bunch of customizable buttons, sliders, and encoders, it excels at every situation mentioned above so it’s up to you to decide how you plan to use it.

Bottom Line

It is quite hard to mention all the good stuff that Roland offers with this product in a short overview. While the price may be high, Roland justifies with numerous options and sound features that you can’t find anywhere else.

Best Yamaha Stage Piano:
Yamaha CP88

Yamaha CP88 88-Key Graded Hammer Action Stage Piano with Sustain Pedal

PROS

  • Available in more portable 73 model
  • Synthetic ebony and ivory keybed tops
  • Simple but quite intuitive user interface
  • Comes with a lot of pedal inputs options
  • Three grand and two upright pianos sampled separately

CONS

  • Provides only one split point for keyboard sounds
  • Line input could have a dedicated knob on the front panel

What Recent Buyers Report

They like how easy it is to navigate through the interface, even during a live performance and that you have a knob for every setting. But, its sound isn’t everyone’s favorite compared to the similar price models. Also, professional pianists weren’t so impressed with the keybed feel.

Why it Stands Out to Us

Yamaha was one of the first digital piano manufacturers. This time they took a step further and put synthetic ebony and ivory top to match the feel of the acoustic piano keys. Yamaha always had some outstanding electric piano sounds throughout history and they all are included in this model.

Who Will Use This Most

Beginners will appreciate its quite straight-forward interface. Classical players will appreciate the synthetic texture it has on the top. However, it was made for performing live and has some high-quality line outputs so you can use this equipment on any stage so it is more oriented towards professionals.

Bottom Line

If you’re attracted to Nord stage pianos but your budget is low this Yamaha was designed to provide a similar experience for a much acceptable price. The good thing is that you can go even cheaper with a 73 keys model.

Best Digital Stage Piano:
Kurzweil SP6

Kurzweil 88-Key Stage Piano with Fully-Weighted Hammer-Action Keyboard (SP6-8)

PROS

  • 1024 slots for storing your presets
  • Hybrid with premium effect processor
  • Outstanding KB3 organ simulation sounds
  • Sampling capabilities thanks to 2GB of flash memory
  • Able to load programs directly from other Kurzweil models

CONS

  • Mediocre keybed feel and response
  • Archaic display screen may not be for everyone

What Recent Buyers Report

Buyers report that the sound is more than decent. But, they never expected such organ sound quality and control coming at this price. However, it appears that keybed is quite mediocre and not your best choice if playing a classical piano is your first call because of the velocity response.

Why it Stands Out to Us

Kurzweil is famous for its effects processor engine and they incorporated it fully here. Such top quality effect improves the playing experience a lot. It’s also worth mentioning that this model provides the most user preset memory (1024 slots for both programs and advanced splits) on the stage piano market.

Who Will Use This Most

While piano players will enjoy the performance straight out of the box, keyboard players can download any synth sound from Kurzweil workstation series thanks to full compatibility and get a 2-in-1 solution. Either way, sound-wise it was made to perform on all stages flawlessly.

Bottom Line

This stage piano may not be a winner regarding sound or keybed quality. But in case you’re not sure if you’re just a piano player, synth and organ sounds available for this model can definitely help you to find out.

Best Stage Piano Under $1000:
Casio Privia PX-5s

Casio PX-5S 88-Key Privia Pro Digital Stage Piano with Power Supply

PROS

  • Great sounds with 256 notes of polyphony
  • Very detailed keybed with texture printed on black keys
  • Portable at 24 pounds and can work with eight AA batteries
  • Phrase sequencer available for triggering your own grooves and riffs
  • Stereo and dual headphones output along with stereo line and audio input

CONS

  • No integrated speakers on board
  • Display is very small and hard to use

What Recent Buyers Report

Buyers say it’s a great value for money and that it provides much more than just piano sounds. They are especially happy to have such high-quality full-weighted keys while maintaining a lightweight design. But, it also seems that the interface is not so intuitive, though.

Why it Stands Out to Us

It’s not so often that you can see a very nice sounding stage piano that can work on batteries as well. The same goes for the arpeggiator option. It seems like it wants to bring you a piece of the keyboard world in stage piano format at a very affordable price.

Who Will Use This Most 

It will be used for live performers, both weekend players, and full professionals. As it comes with batteries it can be used anywhere, even for a street performance, and thanks to knobs and sliders it can be used as a USB MIDI controller for virtual instruments.

Bottom Line

If you want to purchase a decent stage piano and to save as much cash as possible, consider this Casio product. It will give you much more than just a piano and as the time passes by you’ll be thrilled with your choice.

Conclusion

Nowadays it almost doesn’t matter what stage piano you will pick. They all can provide you more than a decent piano sound. The difference is in fine details such as keybed, portability, additional features and so on. What will be your winner depends on your needs and your current budget.