The Bottom Line
Definitely among the better portable keyboards – great feel to the keys, loads of believable voices (and some fun effects), and really useful features including on-screen chord libraries and education software. This is an excellent and affordable option for children or beginner pianists.
I would also recommend this model to more advanced musicians looking for a budget keyboard with MIDI and recording capabilities. The 76-key board offers an essential range of notes while keeping the price fair.
- Large built-in chord library
- Footswitch input for connecting a sustain pedal
- Ability to add to the songbank through USB
- Record on up to 6 tracks
- Lightweight at 18.5 lbs.
- No AC power adaptor included
- No sustain pedal included (but has a sustain effect button)
- Polyphony is limited when auto-harmony is used (see Keys & Action, below)
- Keys: 76
- Polyphony: 32-note
- Touch Sensitivity: 3 velocity settings; may be turned off
- Reverb/Chorus: 9 reverb settings; 4 chorus
- Metronome: Yes; from 11-280 BPM
- Pitch Bend Wheel: Yes
- Available Colors: Platinum
Review of Yamaha YPG-235
Keys & “Action”:
The keys are more piano-like than most portable keyboards, which tend to have thin, hollow keys. The keyboard itself is somewhat “scaled,” meaning the bass octaves are a bit heavier to the touch than the trebles (like an acoustic piano but to a much smaller degree).
Dual-layering is supported (using two different voices on separate ends of the keyboard), along with up to 20 auto-harmony effects (which let you add harmonization behind singular notes – although it should be noted that when more harmonies are added, polyphony becomes more limited). The volume of the harmonies can be controlled separately from the main volume.
Transposition from -12 to +12.
Voices & Touch-Sensitivity:
The staple voices sound great: pianos, organs, strings, harpsichord. However, seeing as how there are hundreds of tones effects to choose from, some lesser quality samples found their way into the mix. But, unless you really need a genuine-sounding English horn or laser gun, I doubt you’ll be too disappointed.
Touch-sensitivity may be adjusted with 3 preset velocity curves, but will not apply to instruments that are not touch-sensitive by nature (such as the harpsichord).
Preset Songs, Rhythms & Recording:
The YPG-235 has 30 built-in songs, and 70 more can be added from the CD-ROM provided. However, to get these extra songs you’ll need to purchase a USB cable to connect the keyboard to a computer. 160 rhythms and 12 versatile drum kits are also included.
Recording is supported on five tracks of melody and one track of chords (tracks are separate recordings which may be combined to play on top of one another). This model can contain up to a total of 10,000 notes.
Keyboard Speakers & Quality:
The two integrated speakers are on the weaker side at 6W (your basic desktop computer speakers or default car door amps generally stay around 6W), but there was no cracking or other indication of strain when kept at normal volume levels. The keyboard can always be connected to external speakers if volume is a necessity.
Speakers switch off automatically when the headset input jack is occupied – whether by headphones or an external amp – to avoid feedback or late-night disturbances.
- Matching, removable sheet music rest
- Overview CD-ROM with song-learning software
Note: There is no AC power adaptor included in the package. Yamaha recommends the YPG-235 be used with the PA-150 or PA-5D adaptor models to avoid instrument damage.
○ Headphone jack; may be used to connect external speakers or amplifier
○ MIDI to USB port (no cable included)
○ Damper pedal input, 1/4"
See More Yamaha Instruments:■ P95 - 88-Key
■ NP-30 - 76-Key
■ Piaggero NPV80 – 76-Key
■ PSR-e423 - 61-Key