Simple Steps to Use Your Digital Piano as a MIDI Controller

If you have a digital piano, there are simple ways that you can employ to use the instrument as a MIDI controller. Unfortunately, most people don’t know about this trick, or some do know that you can do it but they’ve never done it due to lack of the know-how. Luckily, this post is going to teach you step-by-step how to connect your digital piano and use it as a MIDI controller.

The advantage of a digital piano is that it includes a wide range of sounds and using this musical instrument as a MIDI controller enables you to tap into endless possibilities. These include having access to courses or learning resources, using virtual instruments, and recording songs from the instrument to your computer.

The connectivity options included in a digital piano are what make it possible for you to connect it to other devices. When you connect your piano to a smartphone or PC, you can access your songs and play them. This is not only fun to do but also helps to improve your playing skill. This option is suitable for any pianist, regardless of your playing capability.


Here are some of the things that you need:

  • Your digital piano
  • USB cable
  • Smartphone or PC
  • Free DAW software
  • Virtual instruments

How to Connect Your Digital Piano to Your PC

use your digital piano as a MIDI controller

First, you need to look for the USB input on your digital piano. You can easily find that input at the back of your digital piano. The USB cable is specially designed to plug in a cable and most modern digital pianos include the USB type B input. However, some digital pianos also include the Bluetooth connectivity option, which means you can connect them with your PC wirelessly.

But, if your digital piano doesn’t have a Bluetooth connectivity option, it’s most likely to have the USB type B input at the back.  There’s also the connectivity option of USB type A to type B. It’s also important to identify the type of input your computer has to know the USB type cable that you need.

For instance, most of the latest Macbook computers have USB type C input. Therefore, you may need a USB type C to type B cable if you have the Macbook. In case your piano lacks a USB type B input, it’s most likely to have a traditional 5-pin MIDI connectivity option.

There is also the option of using a USB to MIDI converter. This will require you to connect the USB type A to your computer, and then connect the MIDI IN of the cable to the MIDI OUT of the digital piano. The MIDI OUT of the cable will go to the MIDI IN, and once you have the right cables you can start using your keyboard as a MIDI controller.

How to Use Your Digital Piano as a MIDI Controller

MIDI or Musical Instrument Digital Interface is the language that your PC reads from the digital piano. A good example is if you play a certain phrase on your piano, the PC will receive it via MIDI. This isn’t like recording audio – it offers you control over all the features. That means you have the option of changing notes, lengths, and quantizing the MIDI.

The good thing about this option is that you can use MIDI for lessons and recording with your digital piano. That’s because connecting the MIDI allows you to take virtual lessons to improve your playing skills. In fact, it’s way better than with an acoustic piano because you can also connect to the internet.

If you want to record MIDI with your digital piano, it’s just the same process as the others, but with an additional step of using the DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) software.

You can easily find plenty of free DAW software that will enable you to record. Once you have the DAW software installed, you can begin recording MIDI from the digital piano easily. You can also play virtual instruments with your digital piano.

ALSO READ: The Best Digital Piano Recording Tips


So, can you use your digital piano as a MIDI controller? Absolutely! It’s quite possible to do, provided it has a USB connection. It also offers plenty of possibilities to explore, learn, and improve your playing skills. It’s one of the best ways to have fun with your digital piano and enjoy being a pianist.

We hope this post has been helpful to you and that you’ve learned something different today. If you have any questions feel free to reach out to us through email and we’ll be happy to help.

Digital Piano Planet