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Yamaha S90 Key-bed...


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I have an S90ES. Also has Yamaha balanced hammer action with the aftertouch strip. I think they continued to use the same or similar in the S90XS as well.

 

Is balanced and aftertouch important to you? The current Montage 8 and CP88 are excellent actions for piano playing. As are the actions they used in previous Motif XS and XF models.

Yamaha CP88, Casio PX-560

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Do you know if the Montage 8 and CP88 have the same keyed as those in the S90 and ES? Are the keys lighter, heavier?

 

I had an S90 for about 15 years until it died. I took it in for repairs but the tech couldn't figure out what was wrong with it. I tried with Yamaha in LA but said they no longer do repairs on that keyboard.

 

I ended buying a Kawai MP11SE, which has a great key-bed for piano playing, but I really do miss the S90 key-bed.

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My S90ES"s action has weight to it but swings quickly. That"s typically what I like and I"m currently very much a fan of the CP-88"s action. It"s not balanced but the lighter weights in the higher register feel right to me since I practice more often on my acoustic than digital instruments. The Montage also feels very good and includes the aftertouch if that is important to you.

Yamaha CP88, Casio PX-560

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That's a great way of putting it. >>>>S90ES"s action has weight to it but swings quickly<<<<

 

So would you say the CP88 is the closest to the S90ES in terms of action?

 

No they are different. The S90s used the same balanced actions in old the Motif series. Montage feels just like it.

 

The CP-88"s wood key action is firmer. At the local shop they sit side by side. Both are really nice. The Montage 8 is pretty much the only game in Yamaha-town if you want the fast balanced action like the XF and XS boards. It"s a great controller action. Firm enough you can play piano, fast enough for everything including lead synth finger based technique.

 

Unfortunately the key action is the only thing light on the Montage. That action is great for implementing aftertouch and double sensor

 

The graded wooden action on the CP88 is triple sensor and I like it a lot for piano. But it ain"t the same.

 

One is a synth One is a stage piano.

"It doesn't have to be difficult to be cool" - Mitch Towne

 

"A great musician can bring tears to your eyes!!!

So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

 

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PS - You don"t want a Kronos. It"s sluggish as hell in the bass. My Baldwin is way faster.

"It doesn't have to be difficult to be cool" - Mitch Towne

 

"A great musician can bring tears to your eyes!!!

So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

 

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That's a great way of putting it. >>>>S90ES"s action has weight to it but swings quickly<<<<

 

So would you say the CP88 is the closest to the S90ES in terms of action?

 

No they are different. The S90s used the same balanced actions in old the Motif series. Montage feels just like it.

 

The CP-88"s wood key action is firmer. At the local shop they sit side by side. Both are really nice. The Montage 8 is pretty much the only game in Yamaha-town if you want the fast balanced action like the XF and XS boards. It"s a great controller action. Firm enough you can play piano, fast enough for everything including lead synth finger based technique.

 

Unfortunately the key action is the only thing light on the Montage. That action is great for implementing aftertouch and double sensor

 

The graded wooden action on the CP88 is triple sensor and I like it a lot for piano. But it ain"t the same.

 

One is a synth One is a stage piano.

 

Of the current offerings it"s most similar to my ES as well. The Montage sounds great, he won"t be disappointed.

Yamaha CP88, Casio PX-560

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The Montage/Motif XF keybed is identical to the CP73 and S90/70XS to my understanding. I played an original S90 briefly (used) and it felt a little more plastic-y than my Motif XF8. I will say that the XF/Montage keybed is very good for almost anything but organ (if you do a lot of glisses etc). I think it's an upgrade over the original S90, from my brief playing of that board. Of course, it might have just been worn out too.

Yamaha: Motif XF8, MODX7, YS200, CVP-305, CLP-130, YPG-235, PSR-295, PSS-470 | Roland: Fantom 7, JV-1000

Kurzweil: PC3-76| Hammond: SK Pro 73 | Korg: Triton LE 76, N1R, X5DR | Emu: Proteus/1 | Casio: CT-370 | Novation: Launchkey 37 MK3 | Technics: WSA1R

Former: Emu Proformance Plus & Mo'Phatt, Korg Krome 61, Roland Fantom XR & JV-1010, Yamaha MX61, Behringer CAT, Kurzweil PC4 (88)

Assorted electric & acoustic guitars and electric basses | Roland TD-17 KVX | Alesis SamplePad Pro | Assorted organs, accordions, other instruments

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No it wasn"t worn out. You are right. It"s a very fast action. I didn"t like it the first week I had my S90XS because I was coming from Kawai boards. I had to adjust to it. Once I did it was great. It"s still my favorite action.

 

If OP is coming from an original S90 I would think he could pick up an used S90XS somewhere and be really happy if he doesn"t need the on board sounds. It"s way lighter than a M8. M8 is a lot of money for just a key bed.

"It doesn't have to be difficult to be cool" - Mitch Towne

 

"A great musician can bring tears to your eyes!!!

So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

 

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Search ' Yamaha S90 XS 88-key Master Keyboard" on Reverb ... if you do Reverb.

"It doesn't have to be difficult to be cool" - Mitch Towne

 

"A great musician can bring tears to your eyes!!!

So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

 

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There is one listed as mint. Local pickup only 17 minutes from Woodland Hills in North Hills. That"s what I would do. You can probably arrange to play it before you take it. The stock piano sounds are kind of lame. But it"s the same action as the Montage 8.

"It doesn't have to be difficult to be cool" - Mitch Towne

 

"A great musician can bring tears to your eyes!!!

So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

 

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CEB, thanks for the suggestion. I've been looking on Reverb and there are a few.

 

Also, this company Syntaur say they stock the S90 key-bed.

 

https://syntaur.com/Items.php?Item=5131

 

If I built my own wooden work-station and incorporated the keyed, how difficult is it to get the key-bed to work? EX: Power, USB and Sustain

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Wow, ok. If the unit is otherwise working well, may be worth it. I"m sure you can find a Yamaha authorized service center to do the job for you. Or if you can find the service manual or don"t mind experimenting on how to open, a lot cheaper than replacing.

Yamaha CP88, Casio PX-560

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Experimenting would be the way to describe it. I never ever used a keyboards internal sounds. As a composer, I use mainly VI's into Pro Tools. I guess the only thing I really need is the keybed (I would build my own wooden work-station for the keybed), and there must be a way to connect a sustain pedal, USB to computer and a power supply, but I don't know how difficult that would be.
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Taking just the action - it"s a bit more complicated than mounting it on a piece of particle board and getting the midi data to the computer. Maybe some of our computer hardware guys can chime in on that - but in my mind it would require a PCB to take the raw data and convert to class compliant USB MIDI device. Not to mention Yamaha usually works out the velocity curves to match their internal sound engine.

Yamaha CP88, Casio PX-560

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No it wasn"t worn out. You are right. It"s a very fast action. I didn"t like it the first week I had my S90XS because I was coming from Kawai boards. I had to adjust to it. Once I did it was great. It"s still my favorite action.

 

If OP is coming from an original S90 I would think he could pick up an used S90XS somewhere and be really happy if he doesn"t need the on board sounds. It"s way lighter than a M8. M8 is a lot of money for just a key bed.

 

A Motif XF8 is my everyday keyboard, and I really like the action as well. I may not have been clear, but I was referring to the original S90 action being a little more plastic-y than the Motif action and that was why I was wondering if it was just worn out. I don't know whether they changed the S90XS from the original S90, or whether the differences are more from the way the action is encased. Either is nice though.

Yamaha: Motif XF8, MODX7, YS200, CVP-305, CLP-130, YPG-235, PSR-295, PSS-470 | Roland: Fantom 7, JV-1000

Kurzweil: PC3-76| Hammond: SK Pro 73 | Korg: Triton LE 76, N1R, X5DR | Emu: Proteus/1 | Casio: CT-370 | Novation: Launchkey 37 MK3 | Technics: WSA1R

Former: Emu Proformance Plus & Mo'Phatt, Korg Krome 61, Roland Fantom XR & JV-1010, Yamaha MX61, Behringer CAT, Kurzweil PC4 (88)

Assorted electric & acoustic guitars and electric basses | Roland TD-17 KVX | Alesis SamplePad Pro | Assorted organs, accordions, other instruments

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On the topic of sounds, the S90XS does have the Motif XF's S6 grand, right, in addition to the "Full Concert Grand" CFIIIS? I found that while I REALLY disliked the S6 in my Motif at first, that it was much better in a band than the CFIIIS sample in most cases. Now I like it. Particularly the Rock S6 preset.

Yamaha: Motif XF8, MODX7, YS200, CVP-305, CLP-130, YPG-235, PSR-295, PSS-470 | Roland: Fantom 7, JV-1000

Kurzweil: PC3-76| Hammond: SK Pro 73 | Korg: Triton LE 76, N1R, X5DR | Emu: Proteus/1 | Casio: CT-370 | Novation: Launchkey 37 MK3 | Technics: WSA1R

Former: Emu Proformance Plus & Mo'Phatt, Korg Krome 61, Roland Fantom XR & JV-1010, Yamaha MX61, Behringer CAT, Kurzweil PC4 (88)

Assorted electric & acoustic guitars and electric basses | Roland TD-17 KVX | Alesis SamplePad Pro | Assorted organs, accordions, other instruments

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Sort of. But the S6 sucked on the S90XS. It sounds muffled. The S6 sounds way better on the Motif. Something is wrong with the S6s on the S90XS.

 

I really liked the S700 pianos on the ES. I have some CFIIIs that were tweaked to sound more like S700s on my.

"It doesn't have to be difficult to be cool" - Mitch Towne

 

"A great musician can bring tears to your eyes!!!

So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

 

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Hey guys, I'm about to purchase the Montage 8. To reiterate, the Montage 8 has the same keybed as the S90 or is it slightly different? At the moment, I'm playing on a Kawai MP11SE and I need a faster keybed. According to the info on Yamaha's webpage, the Montage 8 has a Balanced Hammer Effect keybed, which is what the S90 had.
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Montage 8 has the same keyboard as the S90XS. The original S90 is different. I think the new version is better but I"m just a random crazy guy on the internet.

"It doesn't have to be difficult to be cool" - Mitch Towne

 

"A great musician can bring tears to your eyes!!!

So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

 

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Hey guys, I'm about to purchase the Montage 8. To reiterate, the Montage 8 has the same keybed as the S90 or is it slightly different? At the moment, I'm playing on a Kawai MP11SE and I need a faster keybed. According to the info on Yamaha's webpage, the Montage 8 has a Balanced Hammer Effect keybed, which is what the S90 had.

 

I owned and gigged an S90 for almost 10 years. I've probably played the Montage 8, maybe a half dozen times. I feel the Montage as a more substantial and overall a much more refined instrument then the S90. I wouldn't hesitate in the least choosing it over the S90.

 

The MP11SE action feels really good to me but I don't like Kawai piano sounds and the overall player connection of the instrument compared to say even a lesser Yamaha P-515....ymmv.

 

I think the Montage 8 could be construed as a "faster" key action then the Kawai.

 

Hey Dave,

 

I like the MP11SE too. I love it when playing piano. Are you saying that the Montage 8 has a lighter keybed than the MP11SE, which is why you would construe it as being faster?

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There"s always a lot of confusion over action in the 88 note yamahas. I"ve had the S90, S90ES, S90Xs, S70XS, Motif ES8, XF8 and for me the one that didn"t fit in was the S70XS though on paper it had the same action as the bigger S90XS. I played the Montage 8 and I would definitely say it is not the same as the S90 or any of the above. It"s different, maybe what Dave said above, it"s a refinement but no it"s not identical.

 

Then again boards with apparently 'identical' keybeds wont always play the same as it will depend on the manner in which the sit in the carcass of the machine, how they are manipulated for the sounds of that particular machine etc. If I were you I"d try out the Montage 8 first, it"s a fine board with a lovely action and with your s90 experience I"m sure you"d adapt quickly to it.

 

I read recently that the Yamaha MO8 had the same keybed as the ES8/XS8/XF8 but I had an MO8 and never remember it feeling that good?

Yamaha MODX8, Legend Live.
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