Korg D1 Review – Owner’s Thoughts Vs Yamaha P-125

Overhead view

The Korg D1 is a keyboard stage piano that has ruled the entry-level market for a couple of years now, and for a good reason: it packs a mean punch full of everything you need to play smaller gigs.

*I wrote this review after spending three weeks playing on my newly purchased Korg D1 specifically for this review. I grade and review these digital pianos by comparing them with everything near their price point and with higher-end options.

With its 88 fully weighted keys and realistic RH3 action, this entry-level digital piano offers a playing experience that will make you feel like you’re performing on a grand piano.

What surprised me the most about this keyboard was the key action mixed with the piano stock sounds. I instantly compared this with the Yamaha P-125, and you might be surprised to find out which I liked more. We’ll get to this later in the review, though.

Quick Thoughts

  • Korg D1 is a great budget stage piano with impressive sounds and power for its price point.
  • It offers essential features at an affordable price, making it an excellent value for its price range.
  • The 88 fully weighted keys with Real Weighted Hammer Action (RH3) provide a high-end performance experience. (Same keys as the flagship Kronos).
  • The D1 doesn’t have built-in speakers, so have an amp or direct input.
  • A great keyboard under $1,000

Korg D1 Specs

  • Keyboard Type: Real Weighted Hammer Action (RH3)
  • Key Count: 88
  • Sound Generation: Stereo PCM
  • Touch Sensitivity Options: Light, Normal, Heavy, Stable, Steady
  • Maximum Polyphony: 120 Notes
  • Sound Presets: Piano, Electric Piano, Harpsichord, Organ, Strings, Choir
  • Effects: 3 x Brilliance, 3 x Reverb, 3 x Chorus
  • Audio Outputs: 2 x 1/4″ (Left/Mono, Right)
  • Headphone Jack: 1 x 1/4″
  • MIDI I/O: In/Out
  • Pedal Inputs: 1 x 1/4″ (for damper pedal)
  • Included Pedal: Yes
  • Power Supply: 9V DC AC adapter (included)
  • Dimensions:
    • Height: 5.04″
    • Width: 52.24″
    • Depth: 10.35″
  • Weight: 35.27 lbs.

Korg D1 Overview

top view

Designed with beginners and gigging performers in mind, the Korg D1 offers essential features at an affordable price, making it a compelling choice for those seeking quality and craftsmanship in a digital piano.

With its compact frame and well-constructed design, the D1 is suitable for both stage and home use. It features 88 fully weighted keys using Korg’s RH3 real hammer keybed, providing a realistic feel comparable to higher-priced models.

The keyboard also includes 30 standard tones with built-in effects, giving you plenty of options to customize your sound. The control surface allows easy access to patch and effect controls and touch sensitivity, brilliance EQ, reverb, chorus, and metronome settings.

Check out my recent post in which I break down some great metronomes specifically for pianos.

Regarding connectivity, the D1 offers stereo 1/4 outputs, MIDI in/out 5-pin jacks, damper input, and a power adapter jack. It has a detachable music stand, power supply unit, and compact sustain pedal for added convenience.

Overall, the Korg D1 delivers a high-quality playing experience with its realistic keybed and expressive sound quality.


  • Compact design for easy portability
  • User-friendly control panel featuring a convenient small screen
  • Exceptional RH3 keyboard, inspired by the finest Korg pianos and workstations
  • 30 meticulously sampled sounds to elevate your performance
  • Authentic piano tones with enhanced realism through simulated key-off and resonance modeling
  • Full-sized connectors for seamless audio out and MIDI connectivity
  • Complete with a high-quality piano-style pedal for a premium playing experience.


  • No USB port
  • No recording and playback options
  • No pitch bend and mod wheel
  • No Split and Partner mode
  • Lacks onboard speakers
  • On the heavy end


Don’t worry about the lack of built-in speakers, as the sleek and compact design of the Korg D1 allows for easy integration with external speakers or headphones. This design feature makes it ideal for stage performers who often prefer using their own equipment for optimal sound quality.

Plus, its lightweight construction ensures easy portability without compromising on durability. The matte finish on the keys provides a good grip, even if your hands tend to get sweaty during intense performances.

Additionally, the D1’s minimalist aesthetic adds a touch of elegance to any stage setup or home studio. With its black color and clean lines, this digital piano exudes professionalism and sophistication.

Overall, the design of the Korg D1 perfectly balances aesthetics and functionality to meet the needs of both gigging musicians and home players alike.

  • Minimalist aesthetic adds elegance
  • Clean lines create a professional look
  • Black color enhances visual appeal
  • Lightweight construction offers portability without sacrificing durability
  • Matte finish on keys provides a secure grip during performances
  • Sleek and compact design integrates easily with external speakers or headphones

Keyboard Action

Get ready to feel the incredible realism of the Korg D1’s keyboard action, providing you with an unparalleled playing experience.

The D1 features Korg’s renowned RH3 real hammer keybed, which replicates the weight and response of an acoustic piano. This Japanese-built keybed offers a balanced and even feel across all 88 keys, allowing for expressive and nuanced playing.

The keys themselves are made from synthetic glossy acrylic with a matte black finish on the black keys, providing a comfortable grip even when your hands get sweaty during intense performances.

With five touch intensity levels to choose from, you can customize the keyboard’s responsiveness to suit your playing style. Whether you’re performing intricate classical pieces or rocking out with dynamic pop tunes, the D1’s keyboard action will deliver an authentic and satisfying playing experience every time.


Immerse yourself in the rich and expressive sound of the Korg D1. It brings a wide range of meticulously sampled acoustic and electric piano tones to life. The D1 boasts 30 high-quality sounds that are played back in stereo, delivering a realistic and immersive playing experience.

From the beautiful German and Japanese Grand Pianos to the iconic Wurlitzer and Fender Rhodes electric piano sounds, the D1 offers a versatile selection of tones that will satisfy any pianist’s musical preferences.

The attention to detail is evident in the inclusion of damper resonance and key-off simulation, which add an extra layer of realism to the sound. With adjustable reverb, brilliance, chorus, and temperament settings, you have complete control over shaping your desired sound.

Whether performing on stage or practicing at home, the Korg D1 delivers exceptional sound quality that will inspire your musical creativity.


Experience a world of sonic possibilities with the Korg D1’s versatile effects. These effects allow you to shape and enhance your sound to create the perfect performance or practice session atmosphere.

The D1 offers three adjustable effects: brilliance, reverb, and chorus. The brilliance control allows you to adjust the brightness of the sound. This allows you to tailor it to your preference or match it with different musical genres.

The reverb effect adds depth and ambiance to your sound. It simulates the acoustics of various environments, such as concert halls or studios. This creates a more immersive and realistic sound experience.

Meanwhile, the chorus effect creates a rich and spacious sound. It does this by adding multiple voices that subtly detune from each other. This adds a sense of depth and dimension to your sound.

With these effects, you can take your playing experience on the Korg D1 to new heights. You can truly personalize your sound and explore new sonic territories.


The Korg D1 offers a wide range of connectivity options, allowing you to seamlessly integrate it into your existing setup for studio recording or live performances. Here are some of the connectivity features that make the D1 versatile and convenient:

  • MIDI In/Out ports: Easily connect the D1 to other MIDI instruments or external devices for expanded control and functionality.
  • Headphone jack: Enjoy private practice sessions by connecting your headphones directly to the D1.
  • Line Out jacks: Connect the D1 to external amplifiers, mixers, or PA systems for larger performances and venues.
  • Damper jack: Use a compatible damper pedal for enhanced control over sustain and expression.
  • Bluetooth compatibility (with third-party adapters): Wirelessly connect the D1 to compatible devices such as smartphones or tablets.

With these connectivity options, you have the flexibility to use the Korg D1 in various settings, whether it’s in a home studio, on stage, or during collaborative performances.


The Korg D1 boasts an impressive polyphony of 120 notes. This allows you to create rich and layered soundscapes that fill the room with music. The high level of polyphony ensures that each note is sustained and resonates beautifully, even when playing complex passages or using the damper pedal extensively.

The D1’s polyphony is more than sufficient for most playing situations. Whether you’re performing solo piano pieces or layering multiple sounds together for a full ensemble effect, you can confidently express your musical ideas without worrying about notes dropping out or sounding cut-off.

The generous polyphony of the Korg D1 enhances its versatility and makes it a reliable instrument for both beginners and professionals alike.


One of the standout features of the Korg D1 is its realistic and expressive keyboard. It provides a dynamic playing experience that transports you to the grandest concert halls.

The 88 fully weighted keys with Real Weighted Hammer Action (RH3) offer a balanced feel. The keys are heavier in the low register and lighter in the high register. This level of authenticity allows for precise control over your playing dynamics.

Additionally, the D1 offers 5 touch intensity levels for customization. You can tailor the keyboard response to your personal preference.

With this level of attention to detail and quality craftsmanship, it’s no wonder that the Korg D1 is highly recommended by owners and reviewers alike.

Vs The Yamaha P125

In comparing the Korg D1 to the Yamaha P125, it becomes evident that both digital pianos offer exceptional features for musicians of all skill levels.

The Korg D1 boasts an 88-key fully weighted RH3 keyboard with a realistic feel, while the Yamaha P125 also offers 88 keys but uses graded hammer standard (GHS) action.

Both instruments provide touch sensitivity customization options to suit individual playing styles.

The Korg D1 offers 30 high-quality tones and meticulous sampling of acoustic pianos, while the Yamaha P125 provides a range of rich and expressive sounds.

Connectivity options are similar between the two models, including MIDI in/out ports and headphone jacks.

Overall, I would personally choose the Korg D1 as I prefer the key-action and stock sound over the Yamaha P-125.

What I Like

You’ll love the versatility and user-friendly interface of the Korg D1. It’s easy to navigate its various features and create beautiful music.

The D1 offers many options catering to beginners and professionals alike. It has 88 fully weighted keys and a realistic feel provided by the RH3 action. This means you can expect a playing experience comparable to higher-priced models.

The instrument also offers five intensity levels within touch settings. This allows you to customize the key response to your liking. It’s a significant feature that adds to the overall playing experience.


The Korg D1 offers a realistic playing experience and customizable options, making it a top choice for musicians seeking a quality digital piano.

While it lacks onboard speakers, which could make it more beginner-friendly, it’s worth checking out if you are ever planning on playing local coffee shops.

    1. Hi Brian,

      It’s quite a bit different regarding price point. In terms of basic performance, it gives you everything you need and it actually sounds pretty dang good. Would I recommend this over a Nord though, no.

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