Yamaha V50

Yamaha V50 Image

Imagine the excellent sonic characteristics of the DX11 synthesizer or TX-81Z sound module. The V50 is the ultimate 4-Operator FM synth workstation comprising 16-note polyphony, a dual effects processor (with distortion), a large dual line, backlit LCD display, a drum machine, a 16,000 note sequencer and a 3.5in floppy drive to save your songs and voices!

The DVA function and built in voice-based pitch delay are two interesting features in this synth. It's great for percussive sounds such as short bass sounds, marimbas, clavinets, etc and should one pitch an operator really high and work with the pitch bender, one gets very cool ambient effects. It's very rare yet cheap in today's 2nd-hand market and coupled with an outboard (analog) filter it makes an unbeatable digital FM synth!

The V50 has been used by Sin.

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59 Visitor comments
Cal McLeod
October 29, 2010 @ 12:11 pm
Still use my V50 quite a lot. I agree with the guy below who said that the sounds were a bit underwhelming and programming 4 Operator FM Digital sounds is tedious compared to programming an analogue synth like a Juno-106 for example but when used as a sketch pad for songs or as the midi controller for sequences, timing and program changes when playing live the V50 was absolutely brilliant...it never EVER failed. Some idiot even twisted his feet around the audio cables coming out of the back of my V50 once which resulted in the poor synth being pulled violently backwards off my three-tier stand mid song.....the synth fell about four feet, hit the ground and continued playing as if nothing had happened....didn't even skip a beat or anything....honest! You can now get your hands on some much cooler sounding patches for it off the 'net for buttons. I layer mine with a Korg Polysix and can get a pretty good approximation of Numan Polymoog sounds. Cal.
October 15, 2010 @ 7:02 am
@jb : the CZ5000 is a great synth but its sequencer is only an 8 tracks one with far less notes of capacity, its polyphony is only 8 voices and there's no floppy disk. The V50 is a good synth but it uses 4 op's FM - a less interesting way of making FM than using 6 operators. So, if you want a "pure" synth, do prefer te CZ. On the opposite, if you want to have a stand alone kind of workstation, buy the V50. Of course, the best solution should be to have both...
September 10, 2010 @ 8:50 pm
what should a buy a yamaha v50 or a casio cz 5000?? in not sure both same price
June 29, 2010 @ 8:02 pm
Just grabbed a V50 off eBay. I remember really wanting one back in 1989 (14 at the time). I had even sent off to Yamaha for all their marketing material.

My first impression is "damn, this is a very nice board." I was really surprised by the build quality (excellent). Nice solid buttons with a real clicky tactile feel. The key action feels better than my D50, M1 or SY99. Of course either of the aforementioned three synths can blow the V50 out of the water when it comes down to realistic instrument sounds, but for some nice FM "digital" stuff, this machine is great. A very clear, bright, noise free sound. Highly underrated.
Alekx V
May 21, 2010 @ 9:07 pm
This is an amazing synth, really. Nothing comes close for a 4 operator synth. Buyed in early 90's and used for years, still is the main keyboard in my stack. Love it so much that i've decided to inmortalize it by creating an exact copy of this synth in software (softsynth) and in the run create another one, code named "andromeda" which will have what i consider would be the synth Yamaha had builded if 4 op were still a business for them.
The softsynth is still in its design stage but i'am pretty confident that will be a delight for all of those who loved and learned to appreciate the power and versatility of this beast.
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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 - 16 notes
  • Oscillators - 4-Operator Digital FM synthesizer
  • #Instruments - 8 parts
  • Filter - None
  • VCA - 1 DVA env , 1 Pitch Envelope Generator
  • LFO - One
  • Effects - 2 FX Units - 16 different effects
  • Keyboard - 5 octave touch sensitive with pressure sensitivity.
  • Memory - 100 preset / 100 user voices, 100 preset performances / 100 user, 3.5in disk drive.
  • Arpeg/Seq - sequencer: 16000 notes, 8 songs, 32 note polyphonic, punch in/out, real / step programming.
  • Control - MIDI
  • Date Produced - 1989
  • Resources & Credits
  • Images from AudioFanzine.

    Thanks to Edwin Balzan for providing this info.

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