These days, we will be having a better look at a lightweight and extremely versatile keyboard, the Yamaha YPG 535.
While the YPG 535 was released a very long time ago, it remains just about the most popular 88 key keyboards in the 500$range.
The piano is the older brother of the Yamaha YPG 235 (seventy six keys), because it is generally similar keyboard but has one octave fewer keys and therefore a more compact case and a cheaper cost.
A part of Yamaha’s Portable Grand line, the YPG 535 promises a portable design, a variety of piano centric features and realistic Grand piano sound.
Not just piano, the YPG 535 offers 500 instruments sounds, an onboard multi track recorder and a lot of additional features for entertainment and learning
Continue reading to discover what we like and dislike about the keyboard, who’d benefit from it and who’d be much better off with anything different.
Features and yamaha YPG 535 Specs
88-key semi weighted keyboard
Graded Soft Touch action
Touch Sensitivity (three types)
Display: 320 x 240 LCD (+ score/lyrics display function)
Sound: AWM stereo sampling
500 built in sounds (127 panel, twelve Drum Kits, 361 XGlite)
160 preset styles
Thirty preset songs (+ five User Songs + seventy Accessory CD-ROM songs)
Modes: Split, Dual
Effects Reverb: nine types, Chorus: four types, Harmony: twenty six types
Lesson Function: Yamaha Education Suite
6-track MIDI recorder (five songs)
Metronome, , Transpose Fine-tuning
Speakers: 6W + 6W (12cm x two + 5cm x 2)
Connections: USB to Host, USB to Device, Headphone jack, Sustain jack 134 x 42.2 x 14.5 cm (52.7 x 16.6 x 5.7)
Eleven kg (twenty four lbs); with stand seventeen kg (37.5 lbs)
Street Price: $499
Warranty: 3 year manufacturer’s warranty
The YPG 535 is a fairly lightweight keyboard that will come with built in speakers along with a matching stand.
The computer keyboard is a wonderful option for someone who lives in a tiny apartment or even in a dorm room where there’s not much space. With that said, I would not call the YPG 535 super portable.
You will find much more compact keyboards available, but most often, they do not have nearly as many features and sounds as the YPG 535.
The computer keyboard is 52.75 (53.3 with the stand) wide, and that is fairly standard for all 88 key instrument.
The level of the keyboard is 16.6 (19.1 with the stand), and this’s where the majority of its rivals have a bit of advantage.
The YPG 535 isn’t really heavy and weighs only twenty four lbs; the stand adds another thirteen lbs to the excess weight.
The keyboard includes a sturdy matching stand, that is a well built black unit which will securely hold the keyboard in place and keep it from wiggling around. So there is no need to spend extra time and money on purchasing a stand.
The assembly process is somewhat simple for a single person to handle. All you will need is a screwdriver and 15 20 minutes to fasten the stand on the keyboard.
The YPG 535 is a favorite choice to gig with. So in case you intend to shift the keyboard around a lot, you would most likely want a more portable X type stand, which may be immediately detached from the keyboard (no screwdrivers required) and quickly transported.
If you think the full size keyboard (eighty eight keys) is simply too bulky, you might want to think about the Yamaha YPG 235, which has much like the YPG 535 functionality but one octave fewer keys (seventy six keys).
And since the YPG 235 is able to run on batteries, it will be a far more appropriate option for playing on the go.
Unlike the smaller brother of its, the YPG 535 does not have a compartment for batteries and are only able to operate on AC power.
Yamaha YPG-535 controls
The control panel seems a little overwhelming at first with over forty buttons along with other control elements. There’s a dedicated button for nearly every function and setting on the YPG 535.
While doing so, in case you simply wish to play piano, you are able to hit the Portable Grand button and also enjoy the Grand Piano tone across the whole keyboard (all the extra settings and modes will be turned off), and that is extremely convenient.
Yet another excellent aspect of the YPG 535 is a monochrome display (320 x 240).
Yamaha YPG-535 display
Not merely does it make it easier to get around the instrument but also allows you to make use of educational features on the keyboard, like Music Notation Display and Yamaha Educational Suite.
Yamaha YPG 535 can be obtained in just one color called Gold Champaign.
I love the color, it looks strange and makes a good contrast with the black lining around the keybed. Furthermore, the dust and finger marks are not as apparent as on a black finish.
Yamaha YPG 535 has a complete range of eighty eight keys, which are exactly the same size of acoustic piano keys.
As for the mechanism, the product features Graded Soft Touch (GST) action keyboard. It’s Yamaha’s least expensive keyboard action, which does not replicate the hammer action found on an acoustic piano.
Yamaha YPG 535 keyboard action
The GST provides semi weighted action where each key has a spring mechanism underneath, that adds a specific amount of resistance to it.
The action definitely feels much better than those cheap entry level keyboards, where keys are not weighted at all. But do not expect the GST action to feel as heavy and authentic as an acoustic piano keyboard.
When you are searching for an instrument which would mimic the feel of an acoustic piano I would recommend considering keyboards with fully weighted hammer action.
While doing so, the GST also mimics some important qualities of an acoustic piano action.
Graded implies that the keys on the lower end feel heavier compared to the keys on the top quality the same as on a genuine piano.
Yamaha YPG 535 graded soft touch
The computer keyboard is also touch sensitive, which means the harder you play the keys, the louder the sound.
The level of touch sensitivity can be adjusted to match the playing style of yours. You will find three preset settings to select from.
Sad to say, the YPG-535’s semi weighted action does not offer control that is a lot of over dynamics compared to fully weighted actions.
The keys of the YPG 535 are made out of plastic like the majority of the keyboards in this cost range.
The GST does not offer synthetic Ebony and Ivory keytops found on some higher end models.
Another downside of the GST action is that makes clicking noises audible when you play at a low-to-medium volume.
In reality, any keyboard, which includes an acoustic one, produces some amount of noise, we simply cannot hear it because the sound is simply too noisy.
Nevertheless, the YPG-535’s keys tend to be just a little bit noisier compared to its competitors with fully weighted actions, like Yamaha’s Graded Hammer Standard and Casio’s Tri sensor Scaled Hammer Action II.
The keys on the YPG 535 do not light up like on the Yamaha EZ 220 and other entry level keyboards.
The YPG 535 uses Yamaha’s proprietary AWM stereo sampling technology, that is discovered in the Yamaha P 45 digital piano.
So the YPG-535’s piano sound is definitely the real audio of an acoustic piano recorded at various volume levels (multi layering) so that a suitable sound is triggered based on the power with which a key is struck.
Below you are able to pay attention to the keyboard’s Grand Piano sound. It is really the YPG 235 (the 76 key version of the YPG 535), but they sound sound the same.
Not just piano, the number of instrument sounds in the YPG 535 is fairly remarkable. You will find 500 internal sounds available to play (127 panel accessible sounds + twelve drum/SFX kits + 361 XGlite additional sounds).
The ten drum kits are the sounds of drum and percussion instruments. Each key press is going to give you the sounds associated with another drum/percussion instrument.
The two SFX kits are the mix of funny and interesting sounds like the sound of lighting, dog barking, running water, along with other unusual sounds.
The rest 361 XGlite sounds are additional sounds, and several of them overlap with the panel sounds. Nevertheless, you will have the ability to find some interesting and unique sounds there.
It is really incredible to have that lots of sounds in only one instrument. You will additionally have the ability to create new sounds by layering the existing ones (see Features section).
You are able to also customize the sound by adding various effects on the keyboard:
Nine types of reverb (will make the good even bigger as in case you had been playing in a big hall, room, stage, etc.).
Four types of chorus (will make the sound richer and thicker, creating an impact like a few instruments were playing simultaneously).
Twenty six kinds of harmony (you playing will be harmonized with more notes, creating full chords).
Yamaha YPG 535 includes a pitch bend wheel, which allows you adjust the pitch of the notes being sounded. Using the pitch bend, you are able to reproduce various effects, like guitar vibrato, choking, etc.
The master equalizer settings (EQ) is going to allow you to tailor the sound based on what reproduction system you are using, the keyboard’s internal speakers, an outside speaker system or headset.
The polyphony is the amount of notes a digital piano is able to produce at the same time.
The majority of the contemporary digital pianos are equipped with sixty four, 128, 192 or perhaps 256 note polyphony.
You might question exactly how it’s feasible to have thirty two, sixty four, or perhaps even 128 notes playing at the exact same time, if there are only eighty eight keys and we never ever play them all together.
To begin with, a lot of today’s digital pianos use stereo samples, which often require 2 notes for each key played.
One more thing would be that the utilization of the sustain pedal, sound effects (Reverb, Chorus), Dual mode (layering) as well as the metronome tick sound take up additional notes of polyphony.
For instance, if you depress the sustain pedal, the first played notes continue to sound while you are adding the piano and new ones needs more memory to hold all of the notes sounding.
Another example of polyphony consumption happens when you are playing together with a song playback (can be also your very own recorded auto accompaniment or performance).
In this situation, the piano is going to need polyphony not just for the notes you are playing but also for a backing track.
When you get to the polyphony cap, the piano begins to drop the first played notes to free up memory for the brand new ones, which subsequently affects the sound and its fullness.
You will seldom need all of the 192 or perhaps 256 voices of polyphony at a time, but you will find instances when you are able to reach sixty four or perhaps even 128 note limit, especially in case you love to layer a few sounds and create multi track recordings.
So it is very desirable to have a minimum of sixty four notes of polyphony.
The YPG-535 has 32 note polyphony, and this’s possibly the major drawback of this keyboard.
It is particularly disappointing because the keyboard offers a lot of audio and features for music making, and as a result of the 32 note polyphony there’ll be many limitations.
For instance, when you are playing complex classical pieces or perhaps layering 2 sounds (Dual Mode), you may quickly start to run out memory, and the first played notes will begin dropping out.
Although, 32 note polyphony would be adequate for a beginner who’s not likely to play advanced classic pieces anyway, for veteran players it is better to have a minimum of sixty four notes of polyphony, and ideally 128 notes.
Yamaha YPG-535 speakers
The computer keyboard comes with 2 Way Speaker System (12cm x two + 3cm x two), that means the sound spectrum is divided into two parts and played via the corresponding speaker units to provide powerful bass and clear treble.
The speakers deliver well-balanced and full sound in each low and high register. Furthermore, the front facing design of the speakers can make the audio better and more open.
The entire energy output from the speakers is 12W (6W + 6W). The sound is loud enough to pack essentially tiny room.
For a live performance (even a little one) you would most likely need an external amplifier/PA to get a far more powerful sound.
Yamaha YPG 535 offers a lot of features for skilled players and both novices making it extremely hard to ever become bored with the instrument.
Dual Mode allows you to layer 2 different instrument sounds so that any time you press a key, they sound together creating a far more advanced sound.
And considering the YPG 535 has 500 built in instrument sounds, it is just amazing the number of new and fascinating sound combinations you are able to make using this mode.
For instance, you are able to layer a piano sound with strings or perhaps an electric piano with an organ so on.
Split Mode is going to split the keyboard into 2 parts allowing you to enjoy a unique instrument sound with the right of yours and left hand.
The split point (where the keyboard is divided) can be transformed from the standard F#2 to some other key.
The YPG 535 has thirty internal songs (+70 on CD ROM), which you are able to play again, and find out how you can play each song with the Lesson Mode and also the Performance Assistant feature.
Furthermore, the keyboard is effective at showing the scores of the lyrics and the songs in case a song contains lyrics data.
Yamaha Education Suite (Y.E.S) allows you to make use of internal songs for left hand, right hand, or perhaps both hand lessons.
But not only internal songs, there are a lot of songs in MIDI (SMF format zero) on the Internet, which you are able to download to the computer of yours then transfer to the YPG-535’s memory to make use of them the exact same way as internal songs (lessons, performance assistant, etc.)
There are three types of lessons the Y.E.S offers.
To start, you select what part of the song you wish to perform (left, right or perhaps both hands). For instance, in case you choose the left hand part, the right hand part will be played automatically and the other way round.
Yamaha YPG 535 lesson function
Lesson one is called Waiting. The song is going to wait until you play the best note shown on the display. By the way, you do not actually have to learn how to read music, because the display is going to show you (on the virtual on screen keyboard) the actual keys you have to play.
Lesson two is called The tempo of yours. The tempo of the playback will change based on the speed of your playing.
The melody is going to slow down if you play wrong notes and slowly visit the first tempo when you play the proper ones, that enables you to practice at your own personal speed.
Lesson three is called Minus one. This particular lesson type allows you to select the part you would like to perform (left-hand/right-hand) and participate in just that part while another part will be played instantly at the regular tempo.
Performance Assistant is an additional wonderful feature for beginner players that you are able to use with the YPG-535’s built in songs.
Even in case it is the very first time you are playing the keyboard, and you are making a great deal of mistakes, the PA will fix the wrong notes making you sound as a pro.
You are able to pick out of four types of performance assistant depending on what section you are in need of help with (cords, melody or perhaps both).
I would not say it is an incredibly useful feature that you would make use of every day, but it is great fun for beginners and also a great illustration of the way you are able to really play in case you train hard.
Recording and Playback
Yamaha YPG-535 midi recording
The YPG 535 has a 6 track MIDI recorder, which enables you to capture up to five User Songs and store them in the flash memory of the instrument.
You are able to then convert the recordings to SMF format and also save them to a USB flash drive.
For each song, you are able to capture as much as six tracks then play all of them together as a single song. It is going to allow you to produce complex multi layered recordings with several instrument parts, effects, and rhythms.
It is also quite handy that you are able to pay attention to the playback of the recorded tracks while you are recording another one.
Because we are recording in MIDI (not audio data), we are able to change the tempo, instrument sound, add effects as well as correct/add new notes after the recording is finished.
Some other Functions
Yamaha YPG-535 accompaniment
You are able to improve your performance using the auto accompaniment function.
The YPG 535 offers 160 different accompaniment styles that will accompany you performance with a number of instruments as in case you had been playing in a genuine band or perhaps orchestra.
The accompaniment (rhythm + bass + chords) changes according to the notes you play with you left hand (chords or perhaps even single notes in case you do not full cords).
Put simply, you manage the band with the left hand of yours and play the primary melody with the right hand of yours.
Yamaha YPG-535 metronome
The computer keyboard is equipped with a metronome, which is a fantastic tool to practice your time keeping and rhythm.
You are able to change the metronome volume, tempo, the number of beats per measure and also the length of each beat (time signature).
Though the YPG 535, like any keyboard, does not have to be tuned, it provides 2 functions to adjust the pitch to fit the needs of yours.
The very first one is known as the Transpose function, which is going to allow you to increase or decrease the pitch of the whole keyboard in semitone increments.
For instance, you are able to use transposing to facilitate playing pieces written in keys that are difficult or perhaps to better fit a singer’s range or perhaps when you have to play a song in another key without actually learning it in a brand new key.
The tuning function is going to allow you to change the pitch in 1 cent steps (hundred cents = one semitone), which you are able to make use of to exactly match the pitch of the YPG 535 to that of an additional instrument.
The Yamaha YPG 535 comes with five ports used to connect the piano to various types of external devices. All are located on the back panel of the instrument.
Phone jack. This jack can be used to turn on a set of headset. After you do, the speakers will automatically shut off so no one is able to listen to you play except you.
This jack can also be employed as a Line Output to connect the YPG 535 to an external speakers or perhaps amplifier since the YPG 535 does not have dedicated Line Out jacks.
USB to Host. The YPG 535 does not have MIDI In/Out ports. Nevertheless, you are able to still transfer MIDI data to your pc with the USB type B port.
Yamaha YPG-535 midi usb jacks
In order to connect the keyboard to a pc you will need an A to B USB cable, which does not come with the keyboard, but may be bought at any electronics store for under five bucks.
You’ll also have to install an USB MIDI driver that you will find on the CD coming with the keyboard, or else you are able to download it from Yamaha’s site.
After you have hooked up the YPG 535 to a computer, you will have the ability to successfully make use of the keyboard as a MIDI controller.
There’s a broad range of music apps and teaching software (e.g. GarageBand, FlowKey, MuseScore, etc.) which will expand the YPG-535’s capabilities in terms of music composing, learning, recording, notation creation so on.
USB to Device. This port enables you to connect a USB flash drive straight to the computer keyboard for exchanging MIDI files.
For instance, you are able to load songs (SMF format 0/1) downloaded from the Internet into the piano and also use them with Education Suite, Performance assistant, etc.
Alternatively, you are able to transfer songs recorded with the piano’s recorded to a USB Flash drive.
Sustain jack. This jack is used for connecting the sustain pedal. It can easily be either the included FC5 footswitch or perhaps other sustain pedal with a 1/4 plug.
The Yamaha YPG 535 comes with the next accessories:
FC5 Sustain Pedal
AC Power Adapter
CD-ROM with Software and drivers
The YPG-535 includes a good matching stand, which means you do not have to buy it also.
Nevertheless, in case you are likely to use the keyboard for gigs or even take it on the highway, the included stand can be too bulky for this.
Furthermore, the stand adds additional thirteen lbs to the mass of the keyboard, that is alright for home use (the heavier, the sturdier), although not really realistic for on-the-go musicians.
So in case you want something more portable, check out X type stands, that are often collapsible/adjustable and therefore more gig friendly.
Listed here are a few great X type stands for the YPG-535:
1. RockJam Xfinity Infinitely Adjustable X type Stand
2. Knox Gear Adjustable Tough Z type Stand
3. World Tour Double X Stand
Yamaha YPG 535 sustain pedal
The keyboard has the Yamaha FC5 sustain pedal. It is a plastic box like pedal that will come with nearly all of the Yamaha keyboards and regrettably, does not offer much control and realism (on/off only).
While the pedal will be adequate for a beginner, veteran players would most likely want something even more substantial.
The M Audio SP 2 will be an inexpensive and much more reasonable option to the FC5.
The SP 2 is high quality sustain pedal with a sturdy metal construction, which feels and also looks much like a genuine piano pedal.
When you are likely to use the keyboard for performing outside of the home, you would want to think about purchasing a gig bag to protect the instrument during transportations.
For its 88 key keyboards, Yamaha offers the Artiste Series Keyboard Bag, that fits the YPG 535 perfectly and also will make transportation a lot easier.
Yamaha YPG-535 Headphones
Headset are available in extremely handy if you wish to perform in private, focusing entirely on your playing but not disturbing others nearby.
Additionally, a pair of piano headset will provide detailed and clear sound that onboard speakers can’t offer.
Take a look at this guide to find out how you can select the best sounding headset for your digital piano.
In many instances the headset included with Amazon bundles are cheap and do not provide great quality of sound and comfort.
Yamaha YPG 535 Review Summary
A Full range of eighty eight keys Semi weighted keys (no hammer action)
Multi-functional display 32 note polyphony
2-way speaker system with 6W + 6W amplifiers Flimsy sustain pedal
500 built in sounds
6-track MIDI recorder Features for learning (Y.E.S, Performance Assistant)
A variety of built in styles, , and rhythms effects
Comes with a sturdy matching stand
Before deciding whether to buy the YPG 535 or otherwise, I would like you to consider 2 things that are important.
For starters, the instrument has semi weighted spring-action keyboard. Though it adds some weight to the keys, it does not come even near the feel associated with a real piano action.
So for all those who mainly needs a device for recreational piano learning or playing, I would recommend a keyboard with fully weighted hammer action, that feels much nearer to a genuine thing.
Moreover, hammer action keyboard is essential for developing proper finger strength and technique and also required by the majority of the piano teachers.
Next, the YPG 535 has 32 note polyphony, which is pretty limiting, particularly for much more advanced players that will play complex classical pieces, create multi track recordings that comprise of several instrument parts so on.
If the points I mentioned above do not bother you, you will certainly love this keyboard.
The Yamaha YPG 535 continues to be just about the most popular keyboards under 500$and has gathered a huge selection of reviews that are positive over the years.
The computer keyboard has a full range of graded velocity sensitive keys, 500 built in sounds and a lot of features that are great for learning and music making.
Particularly, the instrument offers a number of kinds of courses that will show you to enjoy every one of the thirty internal songs (more could be downloaded from the Internet).
The display can show music scores, lyrics as well as the keys you have to press. You are able to always improve your performance through the hundreds of accompaniment styles, rhythms, and effects on the instrument.
It is difficult to ever become bored with the YPG 535, whether you are a grandparent or a child, a newbie or even a pro. With no doubts, you will get an incredible value for the investment.
- 88 piano-style keys with Graded Soft Touch
- USB To Device: connect USB storage devices (storage device optional)
- Large Wave ROM features extra high quality Live! Grand sample
- Backlit LCD (320 x 240) displays lyrics, chords & notation
- Performance Assistant Technology features Melody Mode in addition to Chord and Chord/Free Mode