01 Apr Casio Digital Pianos – 2021 REVIEW | 17 Models | LOWER PRICES
By: Professor Tim
Casio Digital Pianos – REVIEW | under $1000 to over $6000 | 17 models | for 2021 | Lower prices than Amazon or Internet | Casio offers many impressive digital pianos for 2021 including the GP-510, GP-310, AP-710, AP-470, AP-270, and PX-870 and more. They are well known for producing some amazing portable and furniture cabinet digital pianos for many decades which are called the Privia and Celviano series of digital pianos and they include the Casio has been giving people in the music community a “big bang for the buck” when it comes to lots of high quality features in a digital piano at a low price as compared to their competition. I have played all of their pianos from the last many years and they always impress me with how good they are for such a low price. Casio is certainly not the only good digital piano company out there but they do a great job at being innovative with their digital pianos just like they are with all the other products they make. In this review I will be primarily focusing on the Casio furniture cabinet models but will also briefly discuss the portable models.
5 important tips to know when shopping for a new Casio digital piano:
1. The Casio company has been in business for nearly 70 years and they are located in Tokyo, Japan where their pianos are designed so they have decades of product designing and manufacturing.
2. There are currently a total amount of 17 Casio digital piano models for 2021 including full furniture cabinet and portables and they are built for beginners all the way up to advanced pianists so they make a wide range of product to accommodate the musical needs of all piano players
3. Casio piano products are known to offer the “biggest bang for the buck” in the lower price ranges under $1500
4. Casio has 8 “furniture cabinet” 88-key digital pianos with built-in sliding key covers starting at $749 price for the entry-level model and going up to $5,999 price fro the top advanced pianist model. Those pianos are called PX-770, PX-780, PX-870, AP-270, AP-470, AP-710, GP-310, and GP-510.
5. The Casio digital pianos have a 3-year and 5-year factory warranty depending on the model and they are very reliable overall.
Casio GP-510 Grand Hybrid digital piano – REVIEW | $5999 store price | The new Casio GP-510 Grand Hybrid digital piano in polished ebony cabinet finish replaces the previous GP-500 and there have been a few notable improvements to to the new model including a better internal speaker system, an upgraded piano sound chip, upgraded dynamic tonal and volume response, and improved sustain and decay time. The other features of this new model stay the same as in the older model which include the 256 note polyphony chip, 35 instrument sound library, ability to split & layer sounds, MIDI and wav file recording and playback, and a variety of other functions and features. The “star of this show” however is the wood key action movement. Casio teamed up with the famous Bechstein grand piano company in Germany which has been producing high end concert grand pianos for centuries and the Bechstein company designed and implemented this special wood grand piano type key action in the GP-510.
The key action also is connected to unique proprietary resin hammers that physically move up and down like real grand piano hammers to give counter-balance to the keys. There are no strings in this piano so the hammers do not actually touch or hit anything…but they do move and give the key action a more realistic “feel.” A lot of advanced pianists have commented on how much they like this key action since it was also in the former GP-500 and many people have played and own that model. So Casio used that same key action in this new GP-510 but improved the “piano sound” portion of this model as I mentioned earlier. It is also important to note that the GP-510 is not available in any other finish or color other than polished ebony but it does look very elegant in that shiny black finish. We believe this GP-510 can definitely go up against the higher priced Yamaha, Kawai, and Roland home digital pianos in the same price range. This model is brand new so should be out in its current form through at least 2021 and probably well beyond. If you want more info on this model then let us know and we can direct you to a more detailed review that we have.
Casio GP-310 Grand Hybrid digital piano – REVIEW | $3999 store price – The new GP-310 Grand Hybrid digital piano in matte black or matte white finish replaces the prior GP-300. This model also has the same upgrades as the GP-510 does with better sound and more dynamic tonal range than the previous model and noticeably better pedaling sustain response, etc. The differences between the GP-310 and the GP-510 is the piano sound on the GP-310 is not quite as realistic as the GP-510 because the GP-510 has more organic content in the sound chip, the GP-310 does not have any scene (registration) memories, there are a few other features lacking on the GP-310 that are on the GP-510, and the GP-310 cabinet is not available in a polished ebony finish.
With other brands of digital pianos they do offer a polished ebony cabinet version for all almost all their models which typically is about $600 to $800 more so we would have liked to see that option with the new GP-310. However you’ll need to spend a lot more money on the GP-510 to get that upgraded finish. This model is new so should be out in it’s current form through 2021 and well beyond. We feel this piano with its grand hybrid all wood key action with 16″ extra long wooden keys and moving hammers is especially competitive with the 4000 models from Yamaha, Kawai, and Roland and in a few ways offers even more piano playing authenticity for the money. If you want more info on these new GP models then please let us know and we can help you and also direct you to our more detailed review of them.
Casio AP-710 digital piano – REVIEW | $2499 internet price – The new AP-710 replaces the previous AP-700 and is a brand new model and should be out for the next few years. The AP-710 is upgraded much the same way that the GP series has been upgraded with better piano sound chip, more tonal dynamic range, better pedal sustain and decay time, and more bass frequency. Essentially, the AP-710 is a GP-310 in a different, lower priced cabinet with Casio’s fast moving and responsive plastic key action and no moving hammers. The speaker system in the AP-710 is 60 watts going through 6 speakers as opposed to the GP series with 100 watts going through 6 speakers, although 2 of the 6 speakers in the GP series are larger speakers able to carry the bass frequencies a bit better. However the AP-710 puts out more than enough quality sound for most homes and rooms.
The buttons and user display screen in the AP-710 are in front of the player above the center of the keyboard as opposed to the GP series user interface control panel which is located to the left of the keyboard. Some people will like the location of the control panel better on the AP-710 and other will like where it’s located on the Grand Hybrid series. Basically, new the AP-710 is the same exact piano as the GP-310 including having the same 256-note polyphony stereo piano sound chip with 3 separate grand piano recorded samples of the German Steinway grand, Berlin Bechstein Grand, and the Viennese Bosendorfer grand, all 26 of the same instrument sounds, along with other functionality. The 3-sensor plastic key action with the synthetic ivory and ebony keytops in the AP-710 is actually pretty good and comfortable to play and is also weighted and graded nicely in movement up & down.
I believe a lot of people can be happy with this new model because it has the better, more accurate piano sound with a nice key action and pedaling response, and is focused on the “piano playing experience, but at a much lower price than the GP-310. The AP-710 is offered only in matte black textured finish and comes with a height adjustable bench and 5 year factory warranty. This is a brand new model so will likely be around for the next few years well past 2021.
Casio AP-470 digital piano – REVIEW | $1499 internet price | matte black, matte walnut brown, or matte white | The AP-470 could be called the little brother to the new $2500 AP-710 but with a lower level piano sound chip, lower level internal speaker system, and lower level functionality in a slightly smaller, but attractive furniture cabinet with built-in sliding key cover. The key action in the AP-470 is very similar to the higher priced AP-710 and they both have a 256-note polyphony piano sound chip. The AP-470 is till a current model and we expect it to be available all the way through 2021 and beyond and beyond as it is a very popular model in its price range and typically gets sold out do to that popularity.
This model is built to primarily focus on the piano playing experience without too many extra “bells & whistles” added like you might find elsewhere. The AP-470 comes with 22 sounds including a specially sampled New York Steinway grand piano sound with 256-note polyphony and it really does sound great coming out of the piano’s 40 watt, 4-speaker sound system and the sound being projected through its open lid “sound projection” system. The stereo grand piano sound in this model is very impressive. This piano has 2-track MIDI recording for left and right hand along with audio wav file recording and you can record and save your music on a USB flash drive to play the music at a later time. You can also download piano (MIDI file) music from your computer and save it to a USB flash drive to be played through the AP-470 so you can play along with that music at any tempo and learn to play new songs that way.
The AP-470 can also be controlled with the color touch screen on your iPad or Android tablet using the proprietary Casio Chordana Piano app which is a very cool feature and not available for the AP-650 or AP-710. When it comes to getting a new digital piano for under $1500 in a nice looking cabinet with front support legs and complete 5-year factory warranty with in-home service, it’s really hard to beat or come close to this upscale AP-470 by Casio in our opinion.
AP-270 digital piano – REVIEW | $1049 internet price price | available in matte black, matte brown walnut, matte white | The AP-270 is the more basic of Casio Celviano series in the line of AP models and has the same same key action and same piano sound chip that is in the AP-470 with 22 instrument sounds, along with 2-track MIDI recording and playback, but there are definitely some differences in other ways. The AP-270 has a 192-note polyphony sound chip and the internal speaker system in this model is just 16 watts of total power into 2 speakers, so it has a lot less audio power than the AP-470 and does not have the speaker-projection lid.
Nevertheless, the AP-270 has the same same stereo Steinway piano sounds and orchestral instrument sounds as is in the AP-470. It does not have audio recording or a flashdrive input like the AP-470 and is a pedestal style cabinet with no front support legs. However, for a smaller to medium size room the speaker system should put out enough volume and the AP-270 key action plays very nicely and smoothly just like in the AP-470, AP-650, and AP-710 making it an excellent choice for beginners through intermediate players who many want to focus on playing piano. It comes in an attractive furniture cabinet with attractive chrome pedals along with a matching single size (non-adjustable) padded bench. Casio gives their full 5-year factory warranty on this model with in-home service which makes this instrument the best factory protected make and model in this price range out of all the brands.
The PX-870 also has things that few, if any other digital pianos in this price range have which include a 256-note polyphony power stereo piano sound chip, 19 higher quality instrument sounds, a 2-track MIDI recorder, a 1-track audio wav file recorder with USB flashdrive storage and playback, sound layer/mix and split capabilities, and “concert play” with live audio recordings of symphony concert orchestras that you can play along with and also control that orchestra tempo and muting parts. The upgraded key action in this model has a realistic “feel” to the key action that we have not experienced on other digital pianos in this price range and it provides a very fast moving, smooth key movement that isn’t too light or springy and also not too heavy and fatiguing. In other words, the key action, the dynamic piano tonal range, and pedaling are all impressive for a model in this price range and the piano looks good to with a 3/4 length privacy panel in back of the piano, a sliding key cover, and easy to access control panel.
Beyond all that, the PX-870 can be controlled by the proprietary app that Casio has designed for iOS and Android tablets called “Chordana” so that you can access all the piano functions and features from your color touch screen on your tablet or mobile phone. The app even has some interactive musical games and sheet music to make using and playing the PX-870 even more enjoyable than it already is. For the $999 price we think this furniture cabinet piano finishes in 1st place among the competition in terms of offering the “biggest bang for the buck” with regard to a satisfying piano playing experience in this price range. Although the PX-870 has been out for awhile it is still a relatively new model and will be out for the rest of 2020 and well into 2021 and perhaps beyond, especially because it is Casio’s most popular model.
This model would be great for a small space and also in a smaller room because the internal sound system is low wattage as compared to the 40 watt 4-speaker sound of the PX-870 with its more powerful 256-note polyphony sound chip and upgraded stereo sampling. The PX-770 has a USB output to connect to external devices and it has a stereo headphone jack for private practice. If you want a furniture cabinet type digital piano at a very low price and don’t want to buy those off-brand cheap “PSO” (piano shaped object) digital pianos like Williams, Artesia, Suzuki, and other brands that we don’t recommend. then we suggest that this Casio would be a better investment unless you can move up to the PX-870. We anticipate the PX-770 will be a current model all through 2021 and possibly beyond that time as it is still relatively new technology.
Casio Portable digital pianos 2021 – The Casio company is also famous for producing a huge line of portable digital pianos offering a whopping 8 models under $1000 and 1 model at $1200 for a total of 8 models right now which includes (from highest to lowest price) the PX-560, PX-5S, PX-360, PX-S3000, PX-S1000, CDP-s350 and 2 others with all kinds of cool technology in them along with some basic entry level models in the CDP series under $500. In fact, Casio has by far the most portable digital pianos under $1500 than any other top digital piano manufacturer out there. Casio uses their proprietary stereo digital piano sound chip with either 256 note polyphony power, 192 note polyphony power, or 128 note polyphony power. The entry level CDP models use the older 64 note polyphony sound chip which is OK but easier to grow out of that. If you can move up to the higher polyphony sound chip models of the PXS series then it would be better.
Casio has very impressive portable pianos in the $600 to $1200 price range which includes some very cool features that make piano playing a lot more fun and intuitive than most brands. This technology would include large color touch screens to access all of the functions on some models, smooth top virtual control panels with “virtual” LED lighted touch sensor buttons on other models which otherwise have a piano top panel which is smooth and all shiny black like a cell phone or iPad when the power is off…no physical control buttons on them at all…very elegant.
Casio has the best proprietary controller app for their new PXS models which allows full control over those models from your Android or iOS color touch screen from your tablet along with Bluetooth wireless audio technology, 3D sound projection from internal speakers, and a very impressive piano key action for the piano’s compact size and this new key action offers a good amount of expression. Although we like these Casio portable digital pianos very much, a few of the other brands out there also offer some impressive portable models including Korg and Kawai under $1000, However, if you want a very cool portable digital piano that’s easy to carry, fun to play, has impressive stereo piano sound and piano key action, and can fit your budget, you should really take a look at these portable Casio models because we think they offer the biggest bang for the buck in this price range. We expect all of these models to continue through 2021. New 2021 digital pianos under $500 (review on this site)