Are you looking for a keyboard piano that is beginner-friendly, and isn’t going to cost a lot of money?If you’re looking for a keyboard that strikes a balance between cost and quality, the Casio CTK 4400 might just be the one for you. It’s great for beginners and is loaded with great features that make learning to play the piano fun and easy – all at a low price point.
In this Casio CTK 4400 review we cover:
Let’s jump in!
Casio CTK 4400
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There are several reasons why we think this is a great keyboard for beginners. First, it has the step-up learning system that can accompany regular piano lessons for faster learning.
It is also lightweight (less than 10 pounds), so it is ideal for younger users.
This keyboard has 61 touch-sensitive keys, 600 AHL voices, 152 demo songs, 180 rhythms, and a whole lot more.
This is a very versatile keyboard that gives you plenty of value for your money.
One of the things we like the most about this keyboard is that even though it is great for beginners, it is also a good keyboard for intermediate and advanced students.
There are so many great features that you can spend hundreds of hours just creating with new sounds. The features you will find on this keyboard are similar to those found in much more expensive models.
Once upon a time, Casio keyboards were considered to be little more than toys, but over the last 30 years or so, Casio has been developing keyboards with the technologies that professionals want to see in their keyboards.
In fact, most models, including the CTK 4400, can easily compete with models from Yamaha and other popular brands. But the Casio models are generally a lot less expensive, making them great for those who want to learn how to play the piano but have low budgets to work with.
We love that the CTK 4400 is lightweight and portable. Even small children can easily carry this keyboard around with them.
This is great if students are required to bring their own keyboards along with them when they go to their piano lessons.
Who is This Keyboard For?
The great thing about the Casio CTK 4400 is that
it is for anyone who loves the piano.
Whether you are a beginner just taking your first lessons, or if you have been at it for several years, there are going to be features that make you fall in love with this keyboard.
The eMedia Starter Piano and Keyboard Lessons software gives you more than 50 step-by-step piano lessons that start at the very basics, including hand positions and even sight reading.
The songs and exercises use live recorded audio, and there are variable-speed MIDI keyboard tracks, as well as fun MIDI accompaniments. You will even be able to receive feedback when you make mistakes.
Don’t fool yourself into thinking that this is only a keyboard for beginners. The CTK 4400 is a keyboard that is enjoyed by pianists of all levels, from students to professionals.
One of the features that most people love is the Hall Effect, which basically lets you press a few buttons and make the sounds much deeper, so you actually get that true symphony sound. This effect gives you a good reverb that lets you feel like you are playing in an actual concert hall.
You can also adjust other effects, including reverb and chorus, to get just the sound you are trying to create.
Depending on the dealer you choose to buy the Casio CTK 4400 from, you could end up saving a lot of money. Many dealers are offering bundle packages, so you get a lot more than just a keyboard.
For instance, some of these bundle packages come with a variety of accessories, including comfortable, padded headphones, a keyboard stand that can be used with most keyboards, and instructional software that makes it easy to learn songs and start playing almost immediately.
You will also receive a power supply, so you don’t have to worry about running out and buying batteries all the time.
Getting your keyboard in a bundle package is a great way to save a lot of money. The accessories that are included can often cost more than the keyboard itself, and you will be getting everything for less than $200.
That’s not something to sneeze at! Everything the beginner needs to start learning and playing the piano is included, and it is ready to go as soon as you take it out of the box.
Overview of Features
One of the best things about this keyboard is that it is loaded with fun features that everyone of all playing levels will love. For starters, it has 48-note polyphony. This means that you will not be dropping any notes, even if you are playing fast or complicated pieces.
You will have a smooth performance every time, and it will sound great enough to record and send to others to listen to. Some more awesome features of the CTK 4400 include:
This keyboard offers up 61 full-sized, touch-sensitive keys that help to give you the same feeling that you would have when playing a traditional acoustic piano. This is great for beginners, because it will help you to develop proper fingering techniques.
There are actually two sensitivity levels, and you can also opt to turn off the touch sensitive feature all together, which is good for beginners who need to learn how to control their finger movements so as to not play too loudly or too softly.
There are 600 built-in voices (instrument sounds) in this keyboard, so you can have loads of fun experimenting with a variety of different sounds and make your lessons a lot more enjoyable. This is going to keep things fresh, and even younger students aren’t going to end up becoming bored with their lessons.
These voices are a great way to let your creativity really shine through, and you can create some pretty awesome music just by pressing a few buttons to change the voices.
There are 180 rhythms and 152 songs built into this keyboard. The rhythms are great to play along with, and they are going to help you to develop a better sense of timing. You can also play along with the songs, which is going to make learning to play the piano even more fun, because you aren’t just practicing the same old scales and juvenile songs like “Mary Had a Little Lamb.”
There are many different styles of songs across many music genres, so you are sure to find something that you really want to learn how to play along with.
We just can’t say enough about the step-up learning system that is built right into this keyboard. Even if you don’t want to take regular lessons, you can still easily learn how to play the piano on your own with this learning system. So, when you come right down to it, in addition to being inexpensive, you also save money by not having to pay for piano lessons.
These lessons start right at the beginning, and they are very comprehensive, leaving nothing out. You can choose to learn with one hand or both. This system understands what beginners need, and you can learn at your own pace.
You can easily connect your MP3 player up to this keyboard via the audio jack, which is going to allow you to play along with all of your favorite songs. Then, there is the MIDI connectivity, which is going to let you use a variety of learning apps, which is going to make learning how to play the piano even easier.
You can also use this feature to pull up other songs you want to work with, other tones, and more, all from your computer, tablet, or other devices.
This keyboard has an onboard, six-track recording feature that lets you record and store up to five songs. You may not think that you are ready for recording just yet, but this can actually be another awesome learning tool. You can record what you are playing, and then play it back to track your progress.
This is a great way to be able to hear your mistakes and make corrections while you are learning. Once you have learned how to play, you can use this feature to record your own songs.
There is one thing that we aren’t crazy about with the CTK 4400: It has non-weighted keys. This means that you are not going to get a true piano feel, because the keys just won’t have that same resistance.
But, this keyboard does have velocity sensitive keys, which means that the faster you press a key, the louder it is going to sound in all instrument modes, and it will sound longer when you are playing in piano mode.
How to Use the Casio CTK 4400
Of course, it is going to take a bit of practice and experimenting to learn about how to use all of the neat features this keyboard has to offer. Obviously, this is something that is going to come with time and practice. But, there are many great videos on YouTube that you can watch to learn about how to use the various features.
For instance, check out this YouTube video from Casio about how to use the lesson function.
Comparisons with Casio CTK 3200 and Yamaha PSR E353
You may be wondering how this keyboard stacks up against other comparable models, both from Casio and from other brands. Let’s compare the CTK 4400 with the CTK 3200, and the Yamaha PSR E353, starting with the CTK 3200.
Casio CTK 4400 vs CTK 3200
First of all, both the CTK 4400 and the CTK 3200 are compact, lightweight, and portable. But, the 4400 is a bit on the bulkier side, likely because the speakers and display screen are wider than those on the 3200. The 4400 has a backlit, blue LCD screen that is easier to read than the screen for the 3200.
Now, the 3200 does have a feature that the 4400 doesn’t have a pitch bend wheel that lets you change the pitch of the sound. On the other hand, the 4400 has recording capabilities. Both keyboards have plenty of great features, and in the end, it will likely come down to which features matter the most to you.
Casio CTK 4400 vs Yamaha PSR E353
When comparing the CTK 4400 to the Yamaha PSR E353, the first thing to consider is the cost. Simply because of the Yamaha name, you are going to spend more money on a keyboard that has pretty much the same features as a less expensive model, such as the CTK 4400.
Sure, Yamaha keyboards are high quality, but so are Casio keyboards, so why pay more?
Yes, the Yamaha model does have better speaker quality, but it has fewer voices and rhythms than the Casio CTK 4400. Both keyboards have comparable learning systems built in.
The recording features is better in the Yamaha, but this is only one feature, and you should base your decision on all of the features, your needs, and your budget. In this case, we think the Casio CTK 4400 comes out on top.
If you’re interested in learning how to play the piano, but you don’t want to go out and spend a lot of money on a keyboard or acoustic piano right away, the Casio CTK 4400 is a great option. This is an ideal keyboard for beginners, with plenty of features to learn and grow with, including the built-in, step-up learning system that makes it fun and easy to learn how to play the piano.