The Yamaha P115 is one of the fantastic keyboards offered in the Yamaha ‘P’ (for Portable) series.
Piano junkies worldwide, have Yamaha to thank for populating the market with some of the best portable keyboards. These offer a great balance of portability and performance.
Yamaha sure didn’t lose their touch on this keyboard. And barring expected tradeoffs here and there, the Yamaha P115 actually does pretty well, especially for an entry-level piano.
Upgraded from its slightly older sibling the P105, the P115 comes as a weighted 88 key keyboard.
This piano needs serious consideration if you’re starting out. And, at this competitive price, the P115 is definitely a force to reckoned with in its price range.
The Most Important Features Of The Yamaha P115 At A Glance
- 88 weighed keys with graded hammer action.
- Polyphony of 192.
- Recording and playback.
- Music library with 50 songs.
- USB connectivity.
- App integration.
- 14 voices.
Alright, we might not be able to cover each of these features in detail. But we sure will fill you in on the most important ones.
We’ll begin with the superficial and then work our way to more important details of this keyboard. So, if you’re ready, we know the perfect place to begin…
As mentioned, the unique selling point of the P series is its portability. So, understandably, every piano in this series is compact and lightweight for the sake of portability.
The P115 measures in at 52.2 x 11.6 x 6.4 inches. So, will fit into any small space without much hassle.
As a beginner, you might not have a very large room to practice in. In fact, your practice room might even be your bedroom. Fitting this keyboard in, won’t be a problem at all.
But, here’s one teeny issue, it comes without a stand. Even though you can happily put it on any table, it might be a better idea to get the accompanying furniture stand, for his piano.
Being in the ‘P’ series, this is a really lightweight keyboard, so you won’t have any problem carrying this around from place to place.
Alright, to the keys…
Yamaha gives the P115 a graded hammer action. And it features 88 weighted keys, just like an acoustic piano.
Now, because the keys are individually weighted, you can select the amount of weight you want from them. There are four preset settings – fixed, hard, medium (which is the default setting), and the soft setting.
The fixed setting locks the keys, making them produce the same sound however hard you strike them.
The hard settings, require you to strike really hard to get a loud sound. So, if you want a soft pianissimo, you’d have to play soft. But for more of a fortissimo, you’d have to play hard.
Medium is the closest to a natural feel.
All this is glorious but what’s the real story?
Well, to start off, don’t expect these keys to not be platsicky, because, as on other cheap keyboards, they are. No ebony and ivory here.
Also, the graded hammer action, although good technology, still doesn’t give that oomph when you compare it to an actual piano forte.
But hey, that’s just us being a bit picky, on behalf of the advanced players.
Beginners and intermediate players should have no problem with the action. They should actually find it a pleasure to use.
Voices And Accompaniment
The P115 includes two new voices, that were previously not found in the P series. These are Rock Organ and Wurlitzer.
And, being Yamaha, you can trust the quality of voice samples featured. The piano samples were obtained from their bestselling grand, the CFII Concert Grand.
Alright here are the voices you’ll find in the P115…
- Electric pianos.
Accompaniment tracks are also included, of course. And these tracks are linked niftily to an app. This makes it very easy to alter the tempo, volume and other settings remotely.
What’s a polyphony count?
It’s the number of notes that a piano is able to produce at a single time. You could also say that it’s the number of notes your digital piano can play while you hold down the sustain pedal.
The higher the polyphony count, the better the sound of your piano. This is because, a higher polyphony count, makes a digital piano sound closer to a real acoustic piano.
Compared to the P105, the P115 has a much-improved polyphony of 192. Its older sibling had just 128.
A 128 polyphony count is OK for a beginning pianist. But 192 is obviously a lot better.
Intermediate and expert players will also be more than happy with the 192 polyphony count.
The speakers on the P115 are pretty good and come with two 7-watt amps. On their own, they would easily suffice for home use or small gatherings.
However, if you really want the P115 to shine, connect it to a dedicated keyboard amplifier or through a PA.
There are three modes on the P115, these are – Duo, Split, and Dual.
With the split mode, the keyboard is divided into two parts. So, you can play two different voices (or instruments), on different sections of the keyboard at the same time.
You also get to choose where you want the keyboard to split.
In the duo mode, each half of the keyboard plays at the same pitch. So, two pianists can play the same notes, side by side.
This is a fantastic feature, especially for teachers. You can have your student learn faster, by having them play side by side with you.
Most digital pianos don’t need tuning and the Yamaha P115 is no different. But if you need to make some adjustments to the pitch of the keyboard, you could do that using the transpose or tuning functions.
Recording And Playback Feature
Yamaha finally gives us a keyboard in the P series with a recorder function. So, you can now record your music and play it back anytime. This comes in very handy.
A good example is when you’re composing. A portable keyboard is far better than a long memory.
Teachers will also really appreciate this feature. They’ll be able to record their pieces so their student can practice while they’re gone.
Another unique thing is that you can actually record your right and left hand performances individually. To activate this feature, you simply have to hit the division button.
Another upgrade to the P115, is that this model comes with app integration. So, you can connect your piano to your iOS device with the USB port installed. Once this is done, you’ll be able to control your piano remotely using your Yamaha app.
What can you control using the Yamaha app? Well, the following:
- Dual layers.
- Drum patterns.
And finally, we look at the…
This feature enables the piano to listen to what you’re playing and then provide an accompaniment. So, in essence, your piano tries to decipher the notes, chords, and tempo of your song so it can “accompany” you.
The accompaniment in the p115 might not be as good, or as versatile, as that of the DGX series. But it is still a lot of fun to play with.
For us, the high points of this piano include its graded hammer action which is great for beginners, and its polyphony count.
The speakers are high quality and the low weight makes it very portable.
That would be its accompaniments. There just aren’t enough customizable settings to unlock a pianist’s creative juices.
Another thing that could have been better is the sustain pedal. Because it’s a single sustain pedal, it oftentimes limits the expressive power of the player.
What’s In The Box?
In the P115 package, you get…
- A music stand for your sheets.
- A power stand.
- A user manual.
- A sustain pedal.
The P115 makes a great entry level piano with the standard Yamaha touch of excellence.
Is it perfect? No.
But if you’re serious about getting you a piano as a beginner, you won’t go wrong with the Yamaha P115.