I’ve played classical piano since I was 5 years old. The piano that I love playing the most is at my parent’s house — it’s a Mason & Hamlin grand piano. When I did my undergrad at Vanderbilt, I lived about 150 yards from the music building and had card access 24 hours a day. I could go and play in the practice rooms whenever I wanted. At grad school, I didn’t have such easy access at all, and so for a few years I played intermittently.
Having a piano is not an option at all in my apartment, so the only remaining idea is to purchase a keyboard.
I used to hate — truly hate — playing on a keyboard of any kind. It was like running in the mud rather than on the pavement. I eventually found some very nice and very expensive weighted keyboards, but I never found a weighted keyboard that I could stand both the price and how it felt to play it.
About 10 months ago I finally caved to my mounting need to play the piano and I found that the Casio PX-130 both felt decent enough to play on, and was cheap enough for me to purchase. I’ve been playing on it ever since, and I still like my decision.
Since I live in an apartment, I play with headphones on exclusively, and the sound is fine through headphones. It’s also useful that there’s a second headphone jack which makes it easy to play for another person. The sound if I don’t plug it in is… well it’s loud enough. I don’t play on the keyboard for performing, I play on it for practice and for playing maybe for another person or two.
If you are thinking of buying an electric piano or keyboard for serious classical-style playing, I recommend that you play on what you’re thinking of purchasing first. It’s a subjective thing and you really need to know that you won’t hate playing on it every second.
I think I might record myself playing and post it on YouTube for feedback in the near future… I’m sure they’ll be brutal!