Yamaha YS200 / B200

Yamaha YS200 Image

Yamaha YS200

The YS200 is a 4-operator digital FM synthesizer in a rather funky looking keyboard design released in 1988. It featured an 8-track on-board sequencer with many advanced edit functions and up to 8 song capacity. It has a 61-note velocity/aftertouch sensitive keyboard, can hold up to 300 patches, two LFO's, vibrato, and more. It tends to produce very deep dance/techno basses, eighties digital synth sounds, and new age sounds.It uses the same synthesis as the TX81Z, which means it has 8 waveforms to choose from rather than just sinewaves, which gives it a wide range of possible sounds.

The complexity of FM synthesis is somewhat relieved by the "Easy Edit" controls for basic editing operations, but this can also be limiting since not all parameters are accessible. Full editing of the patches requires a MIDI based patch editor, such as YSEditor, which is available for free but only for the Atari ST. Fortunately, it works on Atari ST emulators for the PC. It's worth the trouble because it allows you to load up your YS with original patches from the TX81Z and some of Yamaha's other classic 4-operator DX synths, making the YS a good way to get your hands on classic patches from several keyboards all in one box.

Yamaha B200 Image

Yamaha EOS B200

The Yamaha B200 is essentially a YS200 with speakers and a more subdued appearance. The B200 uses rather powerful 2 x 20W speakers and also has a stereo line-in (for amplification only). The pitch and mod wheels on this version form two halves of a sphere, which looks modern but ends up being a bit awkward. In Japan, the B200 was called the "EOS B200".

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31 Visitor comments
The Funkfather
July 19, 2011 @ 1:57 pm
I bought mine in the mid to late 80's and used it mostly as a controller. Did quite a lot of demos. I still have it but have not used in many years. Internal sounds were cheesy but seemed great back then. Too bad only 8 note poly. 16 note poly woulda been great for this keyboard.
Duncan
July 9, 2011 @ 4:53 am
I bought my YS100 new back in 1989 for £300. Back then this would buy you a touch sensitive synth or a home keyboard with rhythms but no touch sensitivity.

Personally I love the futuristic looks and huge display. There are some good sounds Patch 25 Floatchime imediately springs to mind. However, the one I tried in the shop seemed to have lots of really good sounds.

I went back a couple of weeks later and they sold me a memory card which they loaded with all the V50 sounds on giving a very good selection.

For info the TQ5 module is like a keyboardless YS200with even whackier looks
lightman
April 30, 2011 @ 5:19 pm
Bought a YS100 not too long ago (same model, just without sequencer). Together with the V50, it's the best 4-op synth around but you'll need an editor if you really want to go somewhere with patch creation, the quick edit functions are nice but won't cut it. YS100/200 synths usually can be found very cheap. If you like FM, buy one, you won't regret it. It's easy to use and of good built quality, highly recommended for powerful bassdrums and basslines, stabs, meandering pads and sniding leads, gets da phonk back into music.
sharad bolar
March 27, 2011 @ 2:38 am
I bought my B200 almost 18 years ago and have had great fun using it. It has remained in its case unused for the last 10 years and I now find that although the preset works well, the user function does not work and all other buttons are very sluggish to respond. If anyone has a solution to this problem, I would be most grateful to hear from them.
willie f
November 1, 2010 @ 5:08 am
i found the ys 200 keyboard to be a remarkable machine i had mine for 15 years and have really enjoyed it. i now use it to midi my xm1 and xmc1 hammond module organ and the two is great together.
 
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  • Check Prices on eBay
  • The link above will take you to a 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 - 8 voices
  • Oscillators - 4-Operator Digital FM synthesizer
  • #Instruments - 8 parts
  • Filter - None
  • Effects - reverb, delay and distortion
  • Keyboard - 61 keys (w / Velocity and Aftertouch)
  • Memory - 100 Preset, 100 User, 100 more via External Card
  • Control - MIDI IN/OUT/THRU, Breath Controller Input
  • Sequencer - 8-Track, 8 songs (w/ quantization, cut, copy, paste, insert, punch, and more)
  • Arpeggiator - None
  • Date Produced - 1988
  • Resources & Credits
  • Images from Synthony.

    Info provided by Adam Deslauriers and GTmusic.

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