Robert Estrin - piano expert

Are All Piano Keyboards the Same Height?

Learn some interesting facts about the piano keyboard

In this video, Robert addresses whether all piano keyboards are the same height.

Released on April 12, 2017

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DISCLAIMER: The views and the opinions expressed in this video are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Virtual Sheet Music and its employees.

Video Transcription

Hi, this is Robert Estrin at and The question today is, are the keyboards on pianos all the same height? You know, you'd think this would be a standard, but actually it's not. Many uprights have keyboards that are lower. Some old big uprights are even higher than grand pianos. And generally speaking, Asian pianos, pianos made anywhere in Japan, in China, in Korea, generally the keyboards are higher than on American pianos. Why this is I have no idea, but it seems to be a general standard.

That's one reason why it's really nice to have an adjustable artist bench so you can get the right height, which is so critical for being comfortable at your piano. Another interesting fact is that Asian piano benches tend to be at a lower height than American piano benches. So if you couple the lower height of the bench with the higher keyboard on Asian pianos, pianists like me, where most of my height is in my legs, I tend to sit really low. And on Asian pianos, if I sit down on a Yamaha, I have to have an adjustable bench or have something to sit on to raise me up high enough to be at the same height I would be on an American piano, like a Steinway where the height of the bench and the piano is just about right for me.

So that's the interesting facts about the height of keyboards on pianos. Thanks so much for joining me again, Robert Estrin at and
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Comments, Questions, Requests:

Tanyas * VSM MEMBER * on October 20, 2019 @1:01 pm PST
Just a general query about the piano keyboard -
Who invented the original piano keyboard ?
Robert Estrin - host, on October 21, 2019 @4:44 pm PST
That's an excellent question that I would have to research. However, the familiar piano style keyboard has its roots from the harpsichord which goes back to the 12th century.
Fulvia * VSM MEMBER * on April 13, 2017 @3:40 pm PST
Long time ago, I had a huge American-made upright, some 80 years old, and the keyboard was very high. At 5'2" even with a rotary adjustable stool, I had to sit on the edge in order to rest the feet on the floor.
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