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Yamaha S90 ES Synthesizer

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The Yamaha S90 ES Synthesizer combines a stunningly natural acoustic piano sound with all the sonic flexibility of the award-winning MOTIF ES. The piano keyboard uses a new multi-velocity, stereo gran... Click To Read More About This Product

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The Yamaha S90 ES Synthesizer combines a stunningly natural acoustic piano sound with all the sonic flexibility of the award-winning MOTIF ES. The piano keyboard uses a new multi-velocity, stereo grand piano sample with soundboard simulation and half dampening (when used with the FC3 pedal) that is incredibly rich and realistic ” the best Yamaha has ever put into a synthesizer. The 128-note polyphony tone generator, Studio Connections compatibility, mLAN expansion slot, and PLG expandability give it all the synthesis power and control capabilities of the Yamaha MOTIF ES line.

The most expressive piano voice of any synth.

Played at normal tempos and dynamic levels the sound of the Yamaha S90 ES is truly superb, but it's at the opposite end of the tempo and dynamic range that the results are most stunning. The longer waves give each note a very natural sustain that, when used on ballads and slow, exposed pieces, plays expressively with a full, natural sound. This voice also features stretch tuning and a damper resonance effect offering even more realism.

Half-damper capability

Some classic pieces call for a half damper technique where the damper pedal is pressed halfway down raising the felts only partially off the strings. As the sustain function on most synths is a simple on/off operation, such use is normally impossible. The S90 ES, however, is able to respond to small changes in the FC-3 foot controllers pedal position due to its half-damper capability. This gives the performer greater control over the muting by the damper, and expressive freedom to create the subtle nuances required by the music.

Tone generation derived from the MOTIF ES

Using a powerful new tone generator derived from the MOTIF ES, the Yamaha S90 ES produces voices with stunning clarity and great response that heightens the musical experience for both you and your listeners. To meet the needs of todays players its 228MB (when converted to 16-bit linear format) of wave memory holds an enormous library of expressive voices and drum kits, many of which come from the MOTIF ES, that cover everything from acoustic pianos and orchestra to cutting-edge hip-hop and electronica.

88 keys for full piano range

An 88-note weighted action keyboard based on Yamaha's acoustic piano designs offers players a feel that is natural, smooth, and responsive especially on keyboard voices like the acoustic grands and electric grands. For its non-keyboard instruments like basses, drums, and percussion, which require slightly varied playing styles, the action is evenly balanced from top to bottom making these instruments feel and play more responsively. Aftertouch is also included so you can gain more expression from every note.

New signal processing effects system

The S90 ES takes great advantage of the processing power inherited from the Yamaha MOTIF ES to produce effects like damper resonance, reverb, and others with stunning clarity. This power also enhances its multitimbral capabilities.

The system is designed with 2 blocks of insertion effects (117 types) for each voice and 2 overall system effects that include 20 reverb types and 49 chorus/delay effects. This way you can apply the right type of signal processing where it is needed most. Even in song or pattern modes you won't feel confined since voice insertion effects can be applied on up to 8 individual parts simultaneously. Further sound tailoring is available with 3-band individual part EQ settings, 8 types of mastering effects, and a 5-band master EQ.

Seamless system integration

Compatibility with Studio Connections lets the Yamaha S90 ES function as if it were a plug-in within compatible DAW applications such as Cubase and Nuendo. Hardware and software systems integrate seamlessly in this environment where total recall of entire hardware/software systems is possible. In other DAW systems, the S90 ES's sliders, knobs, and data dial can be used to control start/stop of record or playback, track volumes, panning, and more to increase system efficiency.


  • 88-key weighted hammer-action with aftertouch
  • Complete MOTIF ES Wave ROM
  • 32MB S700 acoustic piano with soundboard simulation
  • 128-polyphony, 8 Part-ins effect, reverb, mastering, and master EQ
  • MIDI master keyboard functions
  • Full function remote control for DAW/VST software
  • Half-damper (requires FC3 pedal)
  • 3 PLG slots
  • Optional mLAN16E card to turn your S90 ES into a multichannel ASIO soundcard
Pro Coverage
  • Customer Reviews

Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
YamahaS90 ES Synthesizer

(based on 9 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

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  • 2 Stars



  • 1 Stars



Reviewed by 9 customers

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(30 of 33 customers found this review helpful)


Almost Perfect

By Fanfare Keyboard Man

from St. Louis, MO

Comments about Yamaha S90 ES Synthesizer:

Yamaha S90ES I am a full time musician and have had many keyboards in my forty years of playing. The S90ES has great on board sounds for my playing needs. Great pianos, strings, brass, organs, rhodes and basses. The weighted keyboard is the best I have played on. I have had a Kurzweild PC88 & a PC2X for the last tens years and the S90es feels much better than those keyboards. Still not as good as a real grand but very good. What I don't like about it are some of the performance features. You can use foot controllers for volume pedals but you cannot go from program to program without resetting the pedals. This is not good for live performance. I had to go to in line volume pedals. Also you cannot have effects on two of the assignable outputs. You can't control the bleed over when you use the reverb from one sound to another even if you pan the sounds hard right and left. I still don't understand that. But I got around that also by useing a outboard reverb unit. I got around these problems because of the sounds and the feel. It has been worth it so far.

(9 of 12 customers found this review helpful)


Very Cool

By Anonymous

from Athens, Texas

Comments about Yamaha S90 ES Synthesizer:

The S90 ES, though heavy, is extremely realistic to a grand piano, with a good pair of speakers. I'm not too experienced in the technology of the piano but I know that it won't take that long to learn. I would suggest the S90 ES to anyone who is looking for that very realistic grand piano sound. Several in fact. Plus some of the strangest, most creative named sounds that could be used as background or as a good lead sound. Or, maybe, looking to go solo with some relatively simple, drum beats,from rock to a strange synthesized set with the cool lead sound. The distortion guitars aren't very realistic, though. They don't give that heavy, vibrating, shake in the chest that a real one would give. I think that I could've bought something a little better suited for myself, but that's just me. The instrument is very cool in lot of ways. It justs need two good things to bring out the sound that was meant to be heard: a very good pair of powered speakers, with good range, especially in the bass department,the several different synthesizer sounds can be hard on the bass, and a creative player. Definately top of the synth class with all the acoustic instruments to go with it. A very cool thing. Very cool.

(8 of 9 customers found this review helpful)


The Best


from Dallas

Comments about Yamaha S90 ES Synthesizer:

MY purchase stressed acoustic piano voicing and performance flexibility. I spend a lot of hours playing and comparing synths. In my opinion the Yamaha is the best option available today. The piano voices are superb, all acoustic intrument samples are truly realistic in both sound and acoustic space. The synth. sounds are rich and dynamic. Finally, the arpeggiater is fantastic. It provides intelligent arpeggiation that is very realistic and appropriate for many styles of music. This keyboard is heavy because of its superb build quality. The action is almost identical to my acoustic grand. Highly recommended.

(7 of 9 customers found this review helpful)



By samc267

from Undisclosed

Comments about Yamaha S90 ES Synthesizer:

I purchased this piano after moving cross country. Having to sell my 1928 Chickering Baby Grand, I was pretty skeptical about an electric keyboard, no naturally I searched for a regular acoustic. After playing the S90 I fell in love with it. The hammer action and feel was so similar to a acoustic piano the only difference I could tell was the coating over the keys. Also the piano sound in this keyboard is amazing and better than any keyboard I have ever played/heard. If you are looking for a keyboard with strong piano roots that also has the ability to gig, go with the S90

(1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)


Great keyboard - not quite perfect

By Bruce

from Minneapolis MN

Comments about Yamaha S90 ES Synthesizer:

This is a great board, with some killer sounds. The action is a bit light for my taste, but I bought it against the Roland RD700GX because it was a more versatile instrument. The other thing - the s90es is NOT an intuitive instrument to learn. There is nothing logical about the layout on this thing, and the manual is 288 pages of fine print. There is a row of buttons that say Piano Organ etc. You would think pressing the Piano button would bring up a bank of pianos, but that is not the case. And so it goes. The other thing - its too long (left to right). I bought a stretchy spandex cover for 88 keyboards - won't fit. And just try finding a soft case for this 58" beast.


Best keyboard in the price range

By Joel

from Eugene, OR

Comments about Yamaha S90 ES Synthesizer:

I searched for a keyboard for a few months, and was never could find one that I was satisfied with - but this was my answer. I use it mostly as a stage piano, and its sounds are better than any of the other keyboards in the price range. The action is good, the only complaint is that it does not have progressive action, but it isn't the end of the world. The sampling is great, and the versatility of being able to easily edit the sound you're using is nice. I haven't got much into the synthesizer stuff, but from what I've dinked around with I've been very pleased. I would recomend this to anyone who wants a well-rounded keyboard.



By Jeff

from Greenville, TX

Comments about Yamaha S90 ES Synthesizer:

Just bought the S90 ES and loving it. I am still learning all the bells and whistles with it. So far the Natural Grand sound is beautiful (best I have ever heard!! I had the S80 and loved it and the upgrade to the S90 ES is twice as nice. Very happy with my purchase.


Amazing! Brilliant! Fantastic!

By Ross

from Oregon

Comments about Yamaha S90 ES Synthesizer:

I have been looking at mid level Digital pianos and synths for a while I had to drive 3 hours to try this one and I am so glad I did!! The closest system is the MO8 and if you don't plan on recording beats or can live with software recording do not hesitate to get this. The piano sounds are the best I have heard period! It feels great and has some great real time tweaking available to you such as the Arpeggio FX editor you push 1 button and the 4 sliders convert to adjust the variables, brilliant! It also just looks great and the keyboard feel is perfect to me. A+++ Wow I am so happy. don't settle for anything less.


Yamaha S90 Es

By Pastor Percy

from Jonesboro La.

Comments about Yamaha S90 ES Synthesizer:

The keyboard is outstanding and I'm very,very satisfied with the keyboard. The feel of the keys the voices listen I just like the keyboard.I heard it being played a month ago in New York and I said I had to get it.

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