No matter what age you are, learning how to play the piano is exciting — and it becomes so much easier when you can learn on a portable keyboard from the comfort of your own home. Luckily, there are tons of options available to choose from for those just starting off. The best beginner keyboards are fairly affordable and often come in bundles that include software for learning, headphones for focused practices (without disrupting those around you), and recording features for documenting your progress. Many might also want to find a bundle that comes with a chair and stand so you're set up at the perfect height.
First, let's talk about the difference between a keyboard and a piano (and why it matters for those just learning). For starters, keyboards are electric and mostly portable, while pianos are acoustic and mainly stationary. However, the most important difference for beginners is the number of keys on each. Most standard pianos have 88 keys, while tons of electric keyboards — including most of the options on this list — only have 61. (There's one keyboard with 88 keys included here, too.) While it may feel like you're being shortchanged with a 61-key selection, this shouldn't be an issue for those starting off. That's because the missing keys are primarily lower bass notes that you likely won't need to play right away.
Many beginner keyboards also come in bundles that include headphones, stands, stools, software, and more. These are usually on the more expensive side — so if you're hoping to stick with it and play for years to come, go ahead and splurge (you'll be happier in the long run, because you'll have all the tools you need to learn right out of the box). If you're unsure whether you'll enjoy playing, it might be best to choose a more affordable keyboard that comes without the accessories. Cheaper keyboards might have fewer keys, too, such as the RockJam listed below that only has 49 keys.