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Yamaha YC61 - new Nord Electro rival #3022718 01/09/20 07:46 PM
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NBrooks Offline
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Just up on the internet. Thought worthy of its own thread...

https://yamahamusicians.com/the-superb-new-yamaha-yc61-drawbar-organ-namm-2020/

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Re: Yamaha YC61 - new Nord Electro rival [Re: NBrooks] #3022719 01/09/20 07:48 PM
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Yamaha YC61 Announced #3022720 01/09/20 07:49 PM
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Yamaha YC61

Kinda looks like a competitor to the Roland VR-09. Has drawbars and 61 waterfall keys. Sounds intriguing!


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022721 01/09/20 07:50 PM
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Michael Wright Offline
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Hmmm.

Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022728 01/09/20 08:00 PM
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Adan Offline
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A new Yamaha action, not Fatar. That could be great. 15 lbs. Hard to tell from that video whether the sound will rival the current best clonewheels.


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022729 01/09/20 08:02 PM
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Adan Offline
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Originally Posted by Giancarlo Robles
Yamaha YC61

Kinda looks like a competitor to the Roland VR-09. Has drawbars and 61 waterfall keys. Sounds intriguing!


It's aimed directly at the Electro, and may well have it beat.


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022731 01/09/20 08:04 PM
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Finally, how many decades has it been . . .something close to 40 years for them to develop a valid TW clone and bring it to market. Golly! It 'Could' be great . . . amazing!

Last edited by Legatoboy; 01/09/20 08:13 PM.

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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022732 01/09/20 08:05 PM
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MAJUSCULE Offline
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Well damn.

Wonder if we'll see a 73/76.


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022737 01/09/20 08:23 PM
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This pic (https://asia-latinamerica-mea.yamah...1cb682bc34b21c3c5a4e6580.jpg?imbypass=on) shows:
- Internal Power Supply (woot)
- Audio in on 1/4in jacks (woot)
- 2 "foot controller" and 2 "foot switch" inputs (probably woot)
- 5-pin DIN MIDI (definitely woot).
- USB to host and to device (woot if it can act as a USB host for MIDI controllers, Montage-style)

A lot depends on sound quality, playability and price. But well done Yamaha for at least having a go at a clonewheel.

I hope it can do the dual-keyboard thing with a weighted controller driving its pianos while simultaneously playing organ locally (VR09 and newer Electros can do this).


Regards, Mike.


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022739 01/09/20 08:35 PM
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That brittle, digital overdrive makes this an instant nope for me. And their definition of "two sets of drawbars" is interesting.

Also, I'm amused to see that Yamaha has the same delusions about the relevance of their FM organ sounds as Roland has about it's Jazz Scat sample.

Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022741 01/09/20 08:36 PM
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Adan Offline
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Seems very similar to the CP73/88 in terms of layout and connectivity. Clearly an outgrowth of that development effort.

I'm guessing street price in the $2200-$2300 range, if for no other reason than they know it needs to compete with Electro 6.

Nord should be worried!


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Josh Paxton] #3022742 01/09/20 08:38 PM
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Adan Offline
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Originally Posted by Josh Paxton
That brittle, digital overdrive makes this an instant nope for me. Also, I'm amused to see that Yamaha has the same delusions about the relevance of their FM organ sounds as Roland has about it's Jazz Scat sample.


Yeah, it's not immediately clear that this up there with Crumar/Viscount and the better software clones. But it may give the Electro a run for its money, especially if a) Yamaha has come up with a better key action than Fatar, and b) the pianos are on par with the CP73/88.


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022743 01/09/20 08:38 PM
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$1999 street, according to a quick Google search. A bit out of my budget. frown


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Josh Paxton] #3022744 01/09/20 08:41 PM
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MAJUSCULE Offline
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Originally Posted by Josh Paxton
That brittle, digital overdrive makes this an instant nope for me.


Sure, but paired with a Vent or similar... this likely isn't in the cards for me, but I'm still curious to hear more.


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022746 01/09/20 08:42 PM
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US price is posted as $1999 on several sites. Wish it were lower, but maybe that's fair. Haven't priced Electros recently.

Organs and EPs sound really good to these ears, and the acoustic grand sounds good enough in this video to get me through a one board casual. I'm interested.


Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022747 01/09/20 08:45 PM
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I love Yamaha but I wish people would stay away from that Nord format.


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022748 01/09/20 08:48 PM
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I'm with Adan on this one; those are pretty much my criteria for judging as well. Count me excited, or at least interested, and I admire Yamaha for coming out of the blue to address this market so boldly and with such detailed thought about the needs of performing musicians.

I haven't heard any demos yet as I'm at work, but doubt that would be a clincher for me as I'd need to hear it in person. I really like the interface a lot, and can live with poor distortion sounds as those can be done off-board (and are less critical to be on-board if one has a real Leslie and therefore is driving it with an already-distorted sound vs. applying distortion post-Leslie in production work).

The price is properly competitive with other stuff on the market, so that certainly doesn't rule it out either.

Before I clicked, and had only seen the model name, I initially assumed this would be a Combo Organ like some of Yamaha's 1960's and even 1970's offerings, but it appears to be a clonewheel.


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022749 01/09/20 08:50 PM
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Advantages over Electro include pitch/mod controls, presumably multi-velocity layered sounds for things other than pianos, what looks like a clever drawbar design that combines the physical drawbars with LED indicators, monophonic synth mode with portamento, FM sounds, eight single-button patch recall buttons instead of four, and more flexibility in splits/layers, effects, MIDI, and envelope and filter controls. Remaining Nord advantages appear to be the ability to use stereo out as dual mono outs (organ out one side), custom sample loading, downloadable alternate pianos and other sounds. Yeah, if the sound is there, this could really be a winner. Good chance the action is better than Nord's too.

Manual at https://asia-latinamerica-mea.yamaha.com/files/download/other_assets/4/1311174/yc61_en_om_a0.pdf

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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Josh Paxton] #3022750 01/09/20 08:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Josh Paxton
Also, I'm amused to see that Yamaha has the same delusions about the relevance of their FM organ sounds as Roland has about it's Jazz Scat sample.


My nomination for quote of the week like smile


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Josh Paxton] #3022752 01/09/20 08:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Josh Paxton
That brittle, digital overdrive makes this an instant nope for me. And their definition of "two sets of drawbars" is interesting.

Also, I'm amused to see that Yamaha has the same delusions about the relevance of their FM organ sounds as Roland has about it's Jazz Scat sample.

Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Outkaster] #3022753 01/09/20 08:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Outkaster
I love Yamaha but I wish people would stay away from that Nord format.


Just curious what you mean by "nord format" and what you don't like about it. The overall layout? The push buttons with LEDs?


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022754 01/09/20 08:56 PM
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Having said that, this looks very interesting overall - I have the small Yamaha YC, and overall, it is a blast to play as an organ - frankly feels more organic and sounds better than my VR09 (except for the tiny keys).

So if this is as good as the small YC, and has some other sounds, it could definitely be a challenger for the Roland VR 730.

Speaking of which - do you guys think Roland may also have an updated VR09/VR730 up their sleeve? They have sure dropped prices on teh current models.

Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: MAJUSCULE] #3022756 01/09/20 09:04 PM
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Originally Posted by MAJUSCULE
Originally Posted by Josh Paxton
That brittle, digital overdrive makes this an instant nope for me.


Sure, but paired with a Vent or similar... this likely isn't in the cards for me, but I'm still curious to hear more.


I kind of can't believe that any manufacturer is still, in the year 2020, releasing keyboards that make players utter the phrase "but paired with a Vent," but alas, here we are.

To me this seems like a board that would have been awesome 10 years ago, but by today's standards I can't find a single exciting thing about it. None of the sounds seemed to be in the same league as Nord's (though I'll bet it at least lets you put the split point anywhere you want, so there's that). If it were $500 cheaper it would hit a price point about halfway between a VR-09 and an Electro, which is where it seems to be sound-wise. But at almost the same price as an Electro, I don't see the appeal.

Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022758 01/09/20 09:09 PM
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Josh I understand what you mean. It looks crowded I guess is what I meant before.


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Josh Paxton] #3022760 01/09/20 09:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Josh Paxton
I kind of can't believe that any manufacturer is still, in the year 2020, releasing keyboards that make players utter the phrase "but paired with a Vent," but alas, here we are.

OTOH, a Vent is $500 of dedicated electronics, which may make it impractical to build into a $2000 board, even if they know how to do what Guido did, which they may not.

My bigger issue there is that, without a separate out for organ, there's no great way to add a Vent even if you want to, because youwon't be able to put it on your organ sound without also putting it on any other split/layered sound you might have. That's limiting and awkward, and is going to mean a lot of hitting the Bypass switch. Which you WILL forget to do, and find yourself playing your brass through a leslie sim. ;-)

Originally Posted by Josh Paxton
To me this seems like a board that would have been awesome 10 years ago, but by today's standards I can't find a single exciting thing about it. None of the sounds seemed to be in the same league as Nord's (though I'll bet it at least lets you put the split point anywhere you want, so there's that).

It really does have quite a few advantages over the Nord, beyond more flexible split, as I listed a few posts up. But I'm not yet ready to say if there's a clear winner in piano, EP, or organ. I do feel safe in saying that the Yamaha would be the winner in synth and orchestral stuff (strings/brass/winds).


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022765 01/09/20 09:28 PM
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Layout, especially on the right side, hearkens back to the GEM ProMega UI.

Also, will probably be able to load new, updated sounds like the CP73/88, also a dig at Nord's wheelhouse.

Last edited by dje31; 01/09/20 09:30 PM.
Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022766 01/09/20 09:29 PM
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Nord EPs don't impress me anymore, they haven't kept pace in terms of dynamics and velocity layering. I think the EPs in the CP73/88 are better. APs between Yamaha and Nord are a closer contest, but I prefer Yamaha.

All subjective of course.

Why would you buy an organ keyboard for its pianos? You wouldn't. But if we assume for sake of conversation that organ on both the YC and Electro are a step down from Crumar, etc, then in a sense you're not buying it for the organ either. You're buying it because it's a good all-in-one for your gigging needs. From that perspective, the better Yamaha pianos might make the difference.



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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022770 01/09/20 09:39 PM
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How good are the C3, Percussion, and Rotary effects?


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022774 01/09/20 09:48 PM
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Hopefully, the keys are standard width, unlike most of their unweighted pro keyboards for the last couple decades which are 3/16 " narrower per octave. Maybe that stopped with the Montage/MODX...I jumped off the Yamaha train when I sold my MOXF so I can't speak to those newer models.


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Re: Yamaha YC61 Announced [Re: Giancarlo Robles] #3022775 01/09/20 09:49 PM
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Ha! Hell froze over.


Very interested to see if Yamaha build quality makes its way to this drawbar organ.
Looks like a great partner for the CP88.


Hell will freeze over again when their CS-80 reissue arrives.


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