Yamaha NP-31 Review

Yamaha NP-31 Review
Overall Customer Rating55555
Yamaha NP-31 has an average rating of 5 out of 5 based on 2 user reviews.
Have you played this keyboard? Add your review here
Vendor Price
BestBuy $279.99
Sweetwater $279.99
KraftMusic $279.99
GuitarCenter $279.99

Click here to see the best prices and reviews on Amazon

Yamaha makes everything from acoustic pianos, upright and grand, to lightweight, portable digital keyboards. The Yamaha NP-31 is in the latter category, finding a nice balance between quality and convenience.

The feel of a piano keyboard, digital or acoustic, is always an important factor to consider. The NP-31 is equipped with a “graded soft touch” keyboard, which is designed to simulate the feel of a real-life piano, with all of its hammers and strings. This means that the keys should have a similar weight and resistance to those attached to actual hammers on acoustic pianos and that the digital keyboard responds to velocity of the user’s fingers (ie. how heavy or soft one hits the keys). While this Yamaha model has both, less expensive digital keyboards more often than not have less realistic weight and velocity-response.

While the NP-31 does not have a prolific number of features and settings, the ones that it does have are useful and well-designed. For instance, the keyboard has 10 preset voices of commonly used instruments. So, other than the typical grand piano sound, the user can toggle through and replicate other keyboard-based instruments such as pipe organ, harpsichord, and electric piano. In addition, the settings also allow the user to layer two different instruments on top each other, creating dozens of unique sound possibilities. The NP-31 also provides 10 preset songs, a MIDI in/out, four types of reverb, as well as a built-in metronome. It also includes a feature called AWM Stereo Sampling, which is probably the instrument’s most advanced feature. AWM allows the user to sample and import outside sounds into the keyboard and use keys to trigger these samples.

Portability is one of the biggest selling points for the Yamaha NP-31. Described by the company as “slim, light & compact in design,” the piano weighs just under 13 lbs (6kgs) and is less than 50 inches (105 cm) in length, which is a fraction of the weight and length of even the most basic acoustic pianos. In addition to the AC power adapter, this digital piano also has a battery power option, taking only 6 AA batteries, which allows for approximately 6 hours of playing time. And, with a stereo pair of built-in speakers, it is possible to set up and play just about anywhere.

If there are any drawbacks to the NP-31, it would be that the keyboard only contains 76 keys, as opposed to the standard 88 keys of a full-range piano. This means that the six highest and six lowest notes are cut out. Technically, however, because there is a built-in transpose option, the missing notes can be recovered, but still the user will never have access to all 88 notes at the same time. And although the stereo pair of speakers is a nice feature, the speakers themselves are only 6 watts, which is really only suitable for playing alone. If one wished to perform to an audience or practice with a band, an external, more powerful speaker is necessary.

Overall, the NP-31 by Yamaha is ideal for those looking for a high-quality digital piano with which to start practicing seriously, but don’t want to spend their entire paycheck. It’s also perfect for already serious players, who are seeking something more portable, but don’t want to lose the feel of a real-life acoustic piano.

Highest Rated Piano Keyboards (by Customer Review)

1Yamaha P-255Read Our ReviewSee prices on Amazon.com
2Yamaha DGX-650Read Our ReviewSee prices on Amazon.com
3Casio PX-5SRead Our ReviewSee prices on Amazon.com
4Yamaha P-45Read Our ReviewSee prices on Amazon.com
5Casio CTK-4400Read Our ReviewSee prices on Amazon.com


  1. Logan Pillay  - January 31, 2015 - 2:12 pm

    This keyboard made me fall in love with playing the piano all over again! Extremely good value for what you get. The sound quality is amazing! The tone is very clear and you really feel like you are listening to a real piano rather than a keyboard. The keyboard has several features that I consider to be essential. There is a port for headphones so I can practice without bothering anyone. Also the pedal port is a great addition; I am planning on buying a pedal soon. There is a metronome setting and quite a few other settings as well; I like to have the variety of options. I also think there is a perfect amount of keys; really, I’ve never wished there were any more or less in the time I have been using it. It is a good weight too, easy to lift if you want to toss it in the car but not flimsy at all. I think it’s quite sturdy, in fact. My only little issue is that the music holder could be a little better quality. It works fine but if you use lots of sheet music or if you use books you need to be careful not to overload it. When all is said and done I LOVE this keyboard and would recommend it to anyone looking for one!

  2. Cutie  - January 31, 2015 - 2:15 pm

    Worth 6 Stars, at least! I really needed something I could take when I got a teaching gig or to open mic nights that was lightweight. I am somewhat “vertically challenged” so the keyboard couldn’t be too heavy. The NP31 really fit the bill; I think it weighs right at 25 pounds. In the past all my playing was on an old acoustic upright and I finally made the switch to a keyboard. This one has been a real champ. I like the resistance on the keys; they feel close enough to a piano for me to play comfortably. I would have liked the YPG-235 but it wasn’t worth the extra 25 lbs. in weight to have hammer action, I really don’t miss it much. I like to gig with these keys because there is enough variation but a couple more options (like guitar or flute) would have been even better. Other things I like a lot are the dual sound, reverb, and the built in metronome. The dual power is great, use either the power cord or it can handle 6 AA batteries too. I also thought the midi in/out and sustain were cool to have. The demo tunes are fun, there is a nice variety of them and they’re all things you’ve played before: Beethoven, Bach, Mozart, even a Joplin rag. This keyboard is light enough to travel easily, just be sure you get the soft-side travel bag that is made for this model, it is worth the extra purchase!

Leave a comment

Overall Customer Rating

Back to Top