Korg has built one of the most reputable names in the keyboard world since its birth in 1962. The Japanese company was founded by Tsutomu Kato
Tadashi Osanai and the first product came out in 1963, which was a rhythm machine.
I’ve had the pleasure of playing on countless Korg keyboards over the years and even owning a few of them myself as well.
Since Korg has a ton of different options, I designed this article to focus on digital pianos for each different skill levels and price ranges.
To understand which keyboard option is best, let’s take a look at the important factors that go into deciding.
- 1 What To Look For In A Korg Keyboard?
- 2 Korg Digital Piano Reviews
- 2.1 Korg G1 Air – Advanced Players
- 2.2 Korg Grandstage – Advanced Stage Piano
- 2.3 Korg LP-380 – Best For Intermediate Players
- 2.4 Korg SP-280 – Intermediate
- 2.5 Korg B2SP – Best Beginner Korg Option
- 2.6 Korg EK 50 – Best Beginner Keyboard
- 3 Conclusion
What To Look For In A Korg Keyboard?
The key-bed is arguably the most important factor in deciding on a keyboard. Some are weighted, some are semi-weighted and some are not weighted at all.
The closer that your key-bed feels to an acoustic piano, the better it is overall.
What you want to look for here is the dynamics. You want to be able to play your keyboard with proper dynamics as you go along on your musical journey.
This means that you want to be able to play quietly and loudly the way that you would on an acoustic piano.
With a nice key-bed, usually comes a higher price. The non-weighted options aren’t necessarily bad, they’re just mainly for beginners.
Quality Of Samples
The way the samples sound on your keyboard is important because you will be hearing the same pianos over and over. If you have cheap-sounding piano samples, it’s hard to get into the instrument as much.
Built-in speakers can be an important factor, but they’re not the most important. This is because you can use an amp or plug your keyboard into a PA system or simply use headphones.
If you plan on using the built-in speakers, then you will want to look at the wattage, the size, and the number of speakers.
Korg Digital Piano Reviews
Korg G1 Air – Advanced Players
The Korg G1 Air is the staple of Korg digital pianos. This is a heavy-duty keyboard that comes with a built-in stand. While the stand adds a ton of weight, the stand also comes with 3 pedals.
These keyboards are hand-built in Japan and this is one of the reasons why they weigh a little bit more.
The sustain pedal is capable of half-pedaling, which resembles a real acoustic piano. This makes the stand worth the added weight.
The G1 weighs in at 90.1 lbs, which is a little heavy if you’re planning on gigging with it. With this being said, it’s by no means impossible.
With 29 presets, some may wonder, what makes this digital piano so appealing? Well, the sounds of the piano samples are top-notch.
To me, it’s not often that digital pianos compete with piano VSTs, but I think the sounds on this are great.
The G1 comes in 3 different colors: brown, black, and white. I personally like the way the brown and the black ones look the most. For the price range, this is a lot of options to pick from for colors.
One of my favorite things about this keyboard is the key-action. It plays pretty similar to a real piano and it comes with the same key-bed as the Kronos, the RH3 hammer action key-bed.
As far as the polyphony goes, it’s capable of 120 note polyphony and it also has 9 different effects at your disposal.
If you’re someone who has a knack for learning songs with their ear, the Bluetooth capability of this keyboard will be your best friend. You can playback songs from your phones through your speakers on the G1.
This is super effective when learning a song and not having the sheet music present.
The G1 is loaded with four impressive speakers that are 2 x 4.7″, and 2 x 1.9″. There are also two amplifiers that are 20W each. This is a pretty powerful digital piano when it comes to its speakers.
Korg Grandstage – Advanced Stage Piano
The Grandstage 88 is a sleek-looking stage piano that is loaded with professional sounds and features. This is another look at one of Korg’s more expensive options.
The Grandstage comes with a stand and the DS-1H pedal and this adds to the value.
There are over 500 sounds, 128 note polyphony, 3 effects on the Grandstage.
Powered by 7 different sound engines which are as followed:
- SGX-2 acoustic piano
- EP-1 electric pianos
- Compact organs (analog modeling)
- HD-1 PCM engine
The Grandstage was designed to compete with the Nord Stage series and I think that it truly does compete well with them. As far as the sounds go, I believe the organs and electric pianos are spot on.
The keys are the same that are found on the G1 Air and I believe this is a good thing.
This is built for the professional pianist or gigging musician who is going to utilize the internal sounds that it packs.
From the key action to the sounds, this keyboard was a huge win for Korg.
Korg LP-380 – Best For Intermediate Players
The Korg LP-380 is a digital piano that comes with its own stand and pedal unit.
The LP-380 has impressive speakers including 2 22 watt amplifiers. This keyboard is capable of putting out some serious noise with ease.
There are 3 different effects that you can choose from when tweaking your sounds. Those being, brilliance, reverb, and chorus. The one that I feel always adds the most to piano sounds is the reverb.
Reverb just does wonders with pianos, especially when it comes to making it sound like a real piano in an open room.
One of the things included with the LP-380 is the pedal unit. This is heavy-duty and is built just like the three pedals on an acoustic piano.
All in all, there are 30 different presets to pick from, ranging from pianos to bells.
The key-action is probably the best part of this digital piano. It comes with the RH3 weighted hammer-action key-bed. that has 4 different resistance zones.
A big win for this keyboard is the fact that it uses some of the pianos from the ever-popular Kronos keyboard.
Korg SP-280 – Intermediate
The SP-280 is more of a middle-of-the-road option. I say this because there are obviously better and more expensive Korg options, which I have listed above.
With this being said, there are some really nice things with this keyboard. The speakers are beefy and pack 22 watts each. This is arguably much louder than you will be playing while just rehearsing or practicing at home.
The SP-280 is built for the beginner or intermediate musician as it still includes options such as partner mode. You will also find dual headphone jacks and keyboard splitting.
Keyboard splitting means that you can split the keyboard so that you are your instructor can both play at the same time.
The SP-280 comes with a sustain pedal that supports half-pedaling and it also comes with a keyboard stand. This is a keyboard that is made in white and black and I think both of the colors look really cool.
It is a rather light option as it only weighs 42 lbs. In the big spectrum, this is towards the lighter side.
One of the knocks on this keyboard is that it only has 60 note polyphony. This means that at any given time, 60 notes can’t be played or sustained.
Korg B2SP – Best Beginner Korg Option
The Korg B2SP has some nice key action, a nice stand, and a nice pedal unit, however, it lacks onboard speakers. To some, this may be the end of the line, however, to others, this might not be the biggest deal.
You can use headphones, use an amp or hook up to a PA system. This keyboard is is made in 3 different models, the B2, the B2SP and the B2N.
Personally, I find it a little bizarre that a digital piano doesn’t have speakers built-in. While this is common amongst keyboard workstations, this isn’t very common in digital pianos.
The difference between the 3 is that the B2SP comes with a bulky, yet homey stand, whereas, the B2 and the B2N do not. The B2N also has a different key-bed and weighs significantly lighter.
You can find the B2 and the B2SP in black and white. I personally think the white color looks stunning on this specific keyboard.
There are 2 speakers that are both 15 watts and they have motional feedback.
While I feel like this is a good digital piano, I still don’t think it beats the Roland FP 10.
Korg EK 50 – Best Beginner Keyboard
The Korg EK 50 is actually a keyboard arranger and not a digital piano. The difference being that the EK 50 has a lot more sounds and only 61 non-weighted keys.
As far as digital pianos go, no this does not compare to the feeling or sound of the others mentioned. However, if you’re looking for an affordable and powerful keyboard, this is still a good look.
What’s really neat about the EK 50 is that is an arranger. What this means is that it is built to accompany you with a full built-in band. The sounds on the EK 50 are surprisingly nice.
This looks kind of like a toy or something that would solely be for beginners, but it actually can do more than just a keyboard for beginners.
There are 702 sounds that have made major improvements for keyboards around this price range. The keys are touch-sensitive and they allow you to adjust them to your liking.
Play With A Backing Band
The main feature of this keyboard is that you can play with a backing band at the press of a button.
What’s nice about this is that, if you’re a solo musician, you don’t have to hire out a band to perform with you. You simply have to just program and play with your EK 50.
Korg makes some really solid keyboards. There are some people who swear by Korg and there are others who swear by other companies such as Roland.
As far as digital pianos go, these options are currently the ones that I would recommend. I purposely chose a couple for each skill level.
If you found this review helpful or if you even disagree, let me know below!