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on Tuesday, 8 Sep 2015
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With a wide range of professional quality voices and features, the newly styled Yamaha PSR S950 is an arranger workstation packed full of exciting features.
One of the most notable features of the PSR S950 is the excellent DSP technology, giving you some of the best sounds available out of a workstation such as this. A new "real distortion" effect is perfect or recreating legendary 60s and 70s style guitar sounds with a real analogue feel. The 1286 voices present on the Yamaha PSR S950 are all usable and authentic, with an emphasis on highly detailed articulation to provide extremely real and professional sounds. An extensive effects section enhances the possibilities of this unit massively. Reverb, chorus, EQ and more are possible and are great when used with the on-board 16 track recorder which writes directly to a connected USB drive.
Here's what Yamaha say about the PSR-S950
The PSR-S950 workstation keyboard effectively blurs the line between digital and acoustic sound and the result will change your musical perceptions forever. We've recorded professional musicians to achieve authentic renditions of their instruments and playing nuances and now you can play alongside them. The PSR-S950's other incredible features—including Vocal Harmony 2 and Super Articulation for thrilling instrumental and vocal support—will add a whole new perspective to your creativity.
Just play to experience incredibly realistic and expressive sound
Acoustic instrument articulations, nuances and dynamics are challenging to reproduce. As the world's largest musical instrument manufacturer, Yamaha has perfected both the science and art of this process to bring you the most sophisticated, musical-sounding and easy-to-play instrument Voices.
Super Articulation (SA) voices
Super Articulation voices reproduce the performance characteristics of acoustic instruments so authentically, you'll feel as if you're playing the real thing. Best of all, SA voices intelligently add the right expressive nuances to your performance without having to learn complicated control techniques - just play!
Mega Voice style technology
Mega Voices feature various playing techniques and performance sounds like guitar and bass finger slides, brass falls, vocal effects, etc. When used in Styles, Mega Voices provide some of the most realistic sounding and dynamic accompaniments.
Powerful, pro-quality accompaniment available at the touch of a button
Playing a style is like being the conductor of a band that always plays the chords and arrangements you tell them to play. The PSR-S950 has a huge collection of 408 built-in dynamic styles.
Yamaha styles are created by the world's best programmers and mixed by professional studio engineers to ensure unparalleled quality.
Audio Styles take one step further by adding an audio recording of studio drummers, percussionists and percussion ensembles playing in various studios around the world. This adds the natural feel, ambience and warmth to the drum and percussion parts of the style, giving your performance greater expressive potential. Yamaha Time Stretch Technology allows the audio to follow your tempo changes without changing pitch, so everything stays in perfect sync.
Guitar-Enhanced Styles with Mega Voices
Guitar-Enhanced Styles not only reproduce the sound of guitar playing, they reproduce the actual chord voicings used by guitar players. This adds to the overall realism of the style.
Vocal features create new levels of entertainment and productivity
Whether you sing for fun, enjoy karaoke or are a singer/songwriter, the PSR-S950 provides everything you need to perform or write. Just plug in your mic and sing!
A powerful Vocal Cancel function effectively cancels or suppresses signals like vocals and solos that exist in the centre mix of an audio file, allowing you to make your own “minus one” track and sing “karaoke” style with just instrumental backing.
Microphone input and Vocal Harmony2
The PSR-S950’s microphone input lets you connect a microphone and sing along with your keyboard performance, song or audio file playback.
With Vocal Harmony, you can sing along with three of your own virtual background vocalists. Vocal Harmony2 takes that a step further with new pitch recognition and stability controls. A convenient real-time Mic Level indicator is included in the main display, and a new intuitive graphic user interface makes it easy to experiment with your own mic settings, effects and harmony types. To get you started, PSR-S950 includes 44 exciting Vocal Harmony presets, including male, voices, female voices and sound effect settings.
Score, Lyrics and Text display
The large LCD display can show lyrics, music notation or text. You can even display this information on an external monitor.
Yamaha’s renowned audio and DSP technology provides great live and recorded sound
In music production, the key to creating great sound is in the way the song is mixed. The mixing console lets you mix your music like a studio engineer, including balance, panning and professional studio Digital Signal Processing (DSP) borrowed from Yamaha’s renowned professional recording and live sound products.
Real Distortion effects are based on digital models of classic guitar amplifiers from the 1960's and 1970's. There are also digital models of legendary analog guitar effect pedals. The result meticulously reproduces the frequencies and dynamics of real distortion guitar sounds.
New speakers and speaker enclosures
A larger speaker enclosure gives the PSR-S950 a full, powerful sound with deep lows and clear highs.
The PSR-S950 features a Yamaha manufactured digital amplifier with a superb signal to noise ratio. Because of its fully digital, highly efficient design, the amp delivers high performance while significantly reducing energy consumption.
Experience the new, versatile high performance audio engine
The PSR-S950 is capable of playing back and recording audio files. It also has a number of audio manipulation features you can use to create “karaoke” style “minus one” tracks in the key and tempo of your choice.
It can also play back audio files from its Multi Pads, great for triggering loops, vocal phrases and sound effects.
The PSR-S950 conveniently supports MP3 and WAV audio file playback.
Time Stretch and Pitch shift
Left : Time Stretch, Right : Pitch shift
Not all singing voices have the same range. The PSR-S950 can put your favourite song in the key of your choice with a powerful pitch shift feature that lets you change the key without changing the tempo. If you do want to change the tempo, you can use the time stretch feature to slow down or speed up the tempo without changing the pitch.
Audio Link Multi Pad
Audio Link Multi Pad function lets you link your own audio files (sound effects, vocal phrases, and so on), and trigger them from the Pads as you perform.
Record your songs and performances as high-quality, uncompressed WAV files to share online or burn to a CD. Connect a microphone or guitar to the instrument and enjoy recording a guitar and keyboard performance together, or record your singing along with song playback.
Voice and Style Expandability keeps your instrument up-to-date
Voice and Style Expansion ensures your instrument can always be updated with new high-quality voices and styles from around the world.
Voice and Style Expansion (VSE)
Thanks to Yamaha’s new Voice & Style Expansion packs, players can take advantage of a wide and ever-increasing selection of voices and styles from around the world. Load them to the PSR-S950's built-in FlashROM (64MB) and instantly play authentic sounds, rhythm and backing in the musical style of your choice.
A Portable keyboard that’s mobile device friendly
The PSR-S950 connects and interacts with your mobile devices and tablets. Plus, Yamaha’s growing number apps for iPhone, iPod and iPad bring new ways to interact with your keyboard.
Use the auxiliary line in jacks to play along with apps like Yamaha’s “NoteStar” digital sheet music with real audio backing tracks. Or, just play along with your favorite tunes from your music library.
With Yamaha’s i-MX1 MIDI interface for iPhone, iPod and iPad, you can experience a new dimension of MIDI control with apps like Yamaha’s Scale Tuner, Piano Diary or Faders & XY Pad.
Dimensions Width 1,002 mm (39 7/16")
Height 148 mm (5 13/16")
Depth 437 mm (17 3/16")
Weight Weight 11.5 kg (25 lbs., 6 oz.)
Keyboard Number of Keys 61
Touch Response Hard 2, Hard 1, Medium, Soft 1, Soft 2
Other Controllers Pitch Bend Yes
Multi Pads 126 banks x 4 Pads
Display Type Color LCD
Size 5.7 inch (320 x 240 dots TFT QVGA )
Language English, German, French, Spanish, Italian
Panel Language English
Tone Generation Tone Generating Technology AWM Stereo Sampling
Polyphony Number of Polyphony (Max.) 128
Preset Number of Voices 786 Voices + 33 Drum/SFX Kits + 480 XG Voices + GM2 + GS (for song playback)
Featured Voices 62 Super Articulation Voices, 23 Mega Voices, 27 Sweet! Voices, 64 Cool! Voices, 39 Live! Voices, 20 Organ Flutes!
Expandability Expansion Voice Yes (approx. 64 MB max.)
Editing Voice Set
Part Right 1, Right 2, Left
Compatibility XG, XF, GS, GM, GM2
Types Reverb 44 Presets + 3 User
Chorus 106 Presets + 3 User
DSP DSP 1: 295 Presets + 3 User, DSP 2-4: 295 Presets + 10 User
Master EQ 5 Presets + 2 User
Part EQ 28 Parts (Right 1, Right 2, Left, Multi Pad, Style x 8, Song x 16)
Mic Effects Noise Gate x 1, Compressor x 1, 3Band EQ x 1
Vocal Harmony Number of Presets 44
Number of User Settings 10
Vocal Effect 23
Preset Number of Preset Styles 408
Featured Styles 25 +Audio, 1 FreePlay, 350 Pro, 32 Session
Fingering Single Finger, Fingered, Fingered On Bass, Multi Finger, AI Fingered, Full Keyboard, AI Full Keyboard
Style Control INTRO x 3, MAIN VARIATION x 4, FILL x 4, BREAK, ENDING x 3
Other Features Music Finder 2,500 Records
One Touch Setting (OTS) 4 for each Style
File Format Style File Format, Style File Format GE
Expandability Expansion Style Yes
Expansion Audio Style Yes (approx. 64 MB max.)
Preset Number of Preset Songs 5
Recording Number of Songs Unlimited (depending on USB flash memory capacity)
Number of Tracks 16
Data Capacity approx. 300 KB/Song
Recording Function Quick Recording, Multi Recording, Step Recording
Compatible Data Format Playback SMF (Format 0 & 1), XF
Recording SMF (Format 0)
Registration Number of Buttons 8 presets/bank (unlimited number of banks, depending on USB flash memory capacity)
Control Registration Sequence, Freeze
Lesson/Guide Lesson/Guide Follow Lights, Any Key, Karao-Key, Your Tempo
Performance Assistant Technology (PAT) Yes
Demo/Help Demonstration Yes
USB Audio Recorder Playback .wav, .mp3
Overall Controls Metronome Yes
Tempo Range 5 – 500, Tap Tempo
Transpose -12 – 0 – +12
Tuning 414.8 – 440 – 466.8 Hz
Octave Button Yes
Scale Type 9 Presets
Miscellaneous Direct Access Yes
Text Display Function Yes
Wallpaper Customization Main, Lyrics
Voices Voice Creator Yes
Panel Sustain Yes
Voice Information Yes
Styles Style Creator Yes
Style Recommender Yes
OTS Information Yes
Songs Song Creator Yes
Score Display Function Yes
Lyrics Display Function Yes
Multi Pads Multi Pad Creator Yes
USB Audio Time Stretch Yes
Pitch Shift Yes
Vocal Cancel Yes
Storage and Connectivity
Storage Internal Memory approx. 6.7 MB
External Drives USB Flash Memory, etc. (via USB to DEVICE)
Internal Memory (for Expansion Pack) approx. 64 MB
Connectivity DC IN 16V
FOOT PEDAL (optional) Switch or Volume x 2
AUX IN Yes
OUT PUT (R, L/L+R)
VIDEO OUT Yes
USB TO DEVICE Yes
USB TO HOST Yes
Amplifiers and Speakers
Amplifiers 15 W x 2
Speakers 13 cm + 2.5 cm dome tweeter (x 2)
Power Supply PA-300C or an equivalent recommended by Yamaha
Power Consumption 16 W
Auto Power Off Function Yes
Included Accessories AC Adaptor PA-300C
Preset Number of Multi Pad Banks 126 banks x 4 Pads
Audio Audio Link Yes
Anonymous review via Feefo | Purchase date: 10 October 2014
great staff friendly and helpful..............got instant refund on.goods
Anonymous review via Feefo | Purchase date: 17 April 2014
very professional customer service (br/) (br/)Thank you so much
Anonymous review via Feefo | Purchase date: 21 January 2014
Fast delivery and arrived on the day stated.
Anonymous review via Feefo | Purchase date: 02 October 2013
The keyboard is good, but a model in this price range should come with after-touch as standard. Like any new purchase there is a learning curve to get the best from it. The provided (paper) manual helps you to get going.
Greg | Purchase date: 06 April 2013
The Yamaha PSR S950 Arranger Keyboard is an excellent piece of kit. I have only had the keyboard a month and already, I have been able to successfully utilize some of the 1500 backing styles and record my own music. Using the sequencer I've recorded covers and originals that I can play along with and perform solos over. I'm really impressed with the attention to detail of the backing arrangements and love the fact that you can choose however rich and complex you want the backing to sound ... You normally have a choice of three 'song beginnings' and 'three song endings' as well as a 'drum break' button. Some of the sounds on the keyboard appear to be incredibly realistic which is great. The bonus for me is the microphone input along with the voice effects and transformations. Not only did I have a lot of fun trying some of these out, but I've already started selecting some for my next gig! Above all a fantastic purchase!!!
Derek | Purchase date: 07 January 2013
I am not going to rewrite the manual, I am just going to say WOW. It blows your mind away with fabulous tones and sensational backing.
What an innovation the music finder is. The sky is the limit with mp3 and USB connection.
What a lot to learn.
Definitely a full 5 star.
Enjoy, I am.