Yamaha SY99

Yamaha SY99 Image

The SY99 is like having a super-sized sampling workstation with the synthesis and sounds of a DX-7mkII. Basically the same as the SY77 it features a larger 76 note keyboard with upgraded synthesis, sample memory, sequencer and more! For its synthesizer section it employs a 6 operator AFM synth engine similar to, if not better than, the original DX's. Sampled preset sounds (AWM2) can then be fused with the AFM sounds to create entirely wild new sounds! And these sounds are quite shapeable thanks to the resonant multi stage Time Variant Filters which offer the ability to recreate the warm analog sounds of classic synths, or something entirely new.

There's an enhanced on-board sequencer section for creating your songs right on the SY99. It's got 16 tracks, from which channel 16 belongs to the built-in drum synthesizer. The sequencer can hold up to 27,000 notes, 99 patterns and 10 songs. And since the SY99 features 16 voices of polyphony for the AFM section, and another 16 voices for the sampled sounds, there are 32 voices to go around to build your song. Not to mention there are 2 digital multi-effects processors which include reverb, delay, chorus, panning and more! Professional features for those of you want to really control and shape your sounds using the unique sounds (and complex synthesis) of a Yamaha FM synth with some special features up its sleeve. It has been used by Vangelis and Chick Corea.

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The link above will take you to an eBay search for this synth to see active listings with more images, specs and information. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace. Our marketplace gets thousands of visits every week so make sure to check back often if you want to buy or sell a synth.

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Are you looking to buy or sell a Yamaha SY99? Post an ad in Gear For Sale or a request in Gear Wanted. For spare parts and repair services check out Gear Services & Other Goods. Our forums also has a Buyer’s Guide section where you can ask for advice on buying synthesizers.

55 Visitor comments
April 29, 2011 @ 2:27 pm
I adore this Synth, where can I find one? Anybody wants to sell his SY99?
Alex Jansik
June 3, 2010 @ 10:41 pm
This unit was used for Carlos Santana's keyboard player Chester Thompson on the live recording tour "Sacred Fire"
Alex Jansik
June 3, 2010 @ 10:35 pm
Awesome Key bed, huge amount of useful sounds, lots of upgrades still available, an absolute winner keyboard for the 90's, I just got one and I really enjoy using this unit along with a bunch of newer keyboards and modules including Mac soft synths, still this unit rocks in 2010, highly recommended for all kinds of music.
April 19, 2010 @ 3:35 pm
John Adams uses this in his Violin Concerto...
February 27, 2010 @ 1:52 am
I had one of these when they came out. On paper it should be amazing, and for the time it was. Very clean sounds, very playable, a very wide range of tones from natural to crazily synthetic, and so much in one box - that was why I bought it, to replace 3 other synths. I would still have it if I hadn't leant it to a friend long-term who claims it broke so he threw it away! I wouldn't have another one though, because it was too long-winded to use with just the buttons as an interface, and my recordings from the time sound too thin to me now. These days I'm preferring instruments that are more intuitive to use, and that have a distinct character (which the SY didn't) - Jupiter, PolySix, OSCar, JD800 - that sort of thing. Thinking of getting a DX7 again, just for those really playable cutting clear tones. I don't like any of the modern synths - they're going backwards not fowards.
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  • Check Price
  • The link above will take you to an eBay search for this synth to see active listings. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace or post a wanted classified.
  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 32 voices: 16 AFM voices, 16 (AWM2) sampler voices
  • Oscillators - 6 operator AFM synth; AWM2 sample ROM with 267 waveforms
  • Filter - Multi-stage Time Variant Filters with resonance
  • Arpeg/Seq - 16 track sequencer, 27,000 note capacity, 99 patterns, 10 songs
  • Effects - 2 internal digital effects processors with 63 effects
  • Keyboard - 76 notes with velocity and aftertouch
  • Memory - 128 preset & 128 user patches, 16 preset & 16 user multi-patches
  • Control - MIDI
  • Date Produced - 1991
  • Resources & Credits
  • Images from Synthony.

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