The DS Standard Foundation
The Dallas International Piano Competition is the first international competition to allow and provision alternate-sized actions for participants who wish to use them. As such, the Competition recognizes the imperative that competition pianists be assured that the size and design of each competition keyboard conforms to certain internationally recognized standards.
For this reason, the Dallas International Piano Competition acknowledges the Donison-Steinbuhler Standard as the industry’s definitive categorization of keyboard sizes, which codify the various keyboards that are suited to each hand size.
By adopting the DS Standard®, the DIPC ensures that its keyboards will conform to the following international standards as established by the DS Standard Foundation. Any piano certified by the DS® logo, whether as a result of its original manufacturing, retrofitting or a rebuild, is guaranteed to conform to one of the corresponding DS Standard® sizes listed below.
The DS6.5® standard is equivalent to what is used on the common concert grand piano. 99% of the world’s pianos conform to this standard. It has a full octave that spans 6.5 inches, with standard allowable deviations of .04 inches. Therefore, all keyboards that span between 6.46 inches to 6.54 inches meet the DS6.5® standard.
The DS6.0 standard is the intermediate alternate-size piano keyboard option. It is engineered to accommodate a moderate adult hand size, and has an octave that spans 6.0 inches, with standard allowable deviations of .04 inches. Therefore, all keyboards that span between 5.96 inches to 6.04 inches meet the DS6.0® standard.
The DS5.5 standard is the small alternate-sized piano keyboard option. It is engineered to accommodate the small adult hand size, and has an octave that spans 5.54 inches, with standard allowable deviations of .04 inches. Therefore, all keyboards that span between 5.50 inches to 5.58 inches meet the DS5.5® standard.