Despite breaking into the higher end digital market over the last several years, Casio’s bread and butter over their 40 years of manufacturing digital pianos have been the entry-level and intermediate market. Casio digital pianos are synonymous in the industry for exceptional value. The CDP-S350 is Casio’s latest entry to this part of the market.
As the spiritual successor to the enormously popular PX-160, the CDP-S350 has some big shoes to fill. The PX-160 changed the entire landscape of the entry-level digital piano market, forcing Yamaha, Kawai, and Roland to play catch up in a part of the market that was typically barren.
Fortunately, Casio has hit it out of the park yet again. With a redesigned light-weight 24 lb cabinet including interactive LCD screen, plus substantially more onboard tones and rhythm accompaniment, Casio has shown yet again why their name is synonymous with value.
This action, Scaled Weighted Hammer Action Keyboard with simulated ebony & ivory key textures, is slightly different from the action in Casio’s PX-S series, though it is somewhat similar. There’s an exaggerated texture on both the white and black keys – some folks will like this, others won’t, so it’s definitely worth trying this action before you buy this instrument if you’re an experienced player.
The weighting is solid, though probably a lighter touch than what you’ll find in the comparable Roland piano. It actually feels similar to Yamaha’s GHS action, albeit with a more exaggerated texture here.
The sensor is only a double here, so obviously it’s not ideal for those seeking super accurate MIDI output, but should still be fine for many applications.
Piano Sound Engine
From a sound standpoint, there are two 8 watt speakers, and even while cranked, don’t really distort, which is another improvement over the PX-160. Tone-wise, the overall quality is definitely on par with what you’re getting in the price range from Yamaha and Roland, while the default piano sample is actually a little bit better.
In terms of accessing the other tones, navigation is super easy and clear via the “Tone” and “Category” buttons. The quality of the other patches, such as E pianos, strings and brass, is very impressive, to the point where I’d say the patches are some of the best I’ve heard loaded into a digital piano that isn’t a stage instrument/workstation.
One potential drawback here is that the tone engine only has 64 note polyphony. While this may not be a big deal for some, if you want to get into recording or layering, the 64 notes will not get you very far.
While Casio did not include any Bluetooth connectivity, all of the basics are covered with a single headphone port (stereo mini), a connector for an optional 3-pedal unit (SP34), Audio in (stereo mini), USB to host and USB to device. Via USB, you also have the option to connect to a smart device use Casio’s Chordana Play App.
Another cool thing worth mentioning is the auto-accompaniment feature. There’s a variety of pre-loaded drum rhythms, along with optional harmonic accompaniment as well. This is of course super fun, and could actually come in handy in a gigging section.
- New Stereo Concert Sample
- 700 onboard sounds
- 64 note polyphony
- 16 watts of speaker power
- Hall Simulator Reverb
- Scaled Weighted Hammer Action Keyboard with simulated ebony & ivory key textures
- Duet mode, Transpose (-12 semitones ~ 0 ~ +12 semitones)
- 200 Built-In Rhythms
- 6 Track Onboard Recorder
- Music Library: 152 Songs
The CDP-S350 has a great tone, solid action, and is loaded feature-wise for the price. It will work as a solid beginner option for someone just starting to learn piano, and just as well for even seasoned professionals who need a highly portable, feature dense rehearsal or gigging instrument.