Author Topic: New Yamaha Sonogenic SHS-500 KEYBOARD  (Read 3083 times)

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Offline alanclare

Re: New Yamaha Sonogenic SHS-500 KEYBOARD
« Reply #1 on: April 10, 2019, 07:38:13 AM »
Yamaha say that it’s, “perfect for music lovers who want to participate in making music, but maybe haven't learned how. This Keytar ("Key"board + Gui"tar") gives you the freedom to dance, jump and move around while you play!”

There you are. Says it all.

Alan


 

Offline voodoo

Re: New Yamaha Sonogenic SHS-500 KEYBOARD
« Reply #2 on: April 10, 2019, 08:41:52 AM »
Thanks for the demos.

I ordered the Sonogenic yesterday, in order to give it a try as a mobile instrument, also in combination with an iOS device (with Korg Module or IK Sampletank) and a portable speaker (Marshall Kilburn). I will write my report later.

What is your opinion? Is it worth the price? How is the keybed? Have you tried to use it with battery power?

Uli
Yamaha Genos
Yamaha MODX7
Yamaha P-125 Digital Piano
Nord Electro 5D
 

Offline pjd

Re: New Yamaha Sonogenic SHS-500 KEYBOARD
« Reply #3 on: April 10, 2019, 02:24:29 PM »
Hi Uli --

I'll be interested in your report!

I suspect that the keybed is the same as the Reface series. I've gotten comfortable with the Reface YC although I wish for 49 keys, not 37. For organ style playing, it's not bad. I'm not so sure about piano, etc. having only demo'ed the CP and DX in the store.

The native sounds are entry-level PSR although the accessibility of the Sonogenic controls leave much room for warping the sound. (A good aspect of the first demo video.) If people are looking for an ultra-small PSR-like sound engine, it would be worth a try.

On-line retailers in the USA show late April availability, so I'll have to wait to try one. Yamaha have emphasized integration with Chord Tracker and product introduction may be coordinated with Chord Tracker SHS-500 support (i.e., the next release).

We're thinking about moving (!) and a new keyboard in the house may be the last thing we need.  :o  (I never thought I would say that.  :) )

Take care -- pj

« Last Edit: April 10, 2019, 02:27:36 PM by pjd »
 

Offline voodoo

Re: New Yamaha Sonogenic SHS-500 KEYBOARD
« Reply #4 on: April 13, 2019, 12:36:07 AM »
So my very first impressions:

It‘s very cool. I think I like it and will keep it. (The price was 265€ for B stock)

On the pro side we have:

* very handy and comfortable
* keybed is very good. The same as the reface models
* has lcd panel with clear text for voice names and functions
* has little built in speaker that is ok for hotel room
* works on batteries
* local sound engine is not bad. Has adjustable filter, reverb, chorus, DSP
* has USB connection and real midi in/out
* has bluetooth LE with small latency when connected to iOS
* line out is only mono, but headphone out is stereo and level is adjustable
* works perfectly on portable speaker (Marshall Kilburn or Bose S1 Pro)

On the negative side there are two surprises, however, theses documented in the reference manual, and they are described in the blog post of PJ:

* The is no organ sound. (It has a rotary speaker DSP program, but not sample to use it for)
* The Sustain Button sends no midi out message. The only CC sent is cc1 modulation. And pitch bend. Nothing else. No volume, no expression, no sustain, no nothing.

So when using it as midi controller to play sound on iOS device, it works well, but you cannot change volume, use sustain or toggle Leslie speed (except using mod wheel cc1 for this). IK Sample tank can map cc1 to Leslie speed. But Korg Module expects cc64 (sustain) which is not available.

Overall, it is very comparable to the Korg MicroKey Air 37. Keybeds are very similar, USB connection and bluetooth LE are equal. (MircoKey sends sustain message, but therefore you have to attach external sustain pedal, it has no sustain button.) But the form factor of the Sonogenic is much more fun. Did I say, that I like it? ;)

« Last Edit: April 13, 2019, 12:47:58 AM by voodoo »
Yamaha Genos
Yamaha MODX7
Yamaha P-125 Digital Piano
Nord Electro 5D
 
The following users thanked this post: pjd

Offline voodoo

Re: New Yamaha Sonogenic SHS-500 KEYBOARD
« Reply #5 on: April 13, 2019, 12:46:59 AM »
Two additional remarks:

My favourite sound is the electric guitar. When you change DSP to Distortion1, add some reverb and chorus and pull down filter, you get a real good rock/metal guitar sound. Attach it to a Marshall speaker, and you get fun. ;)

To add further midi controls, one could use another wireless controller:
* Korg nanoKontrol Studio has 8 sliders, 8 knobs and many buttons
* IK BlueBoard has 4 foot switches, and can connect to two expression pedals
« Last Edit: April 13, 2019, 12:50:54 AM by voodoo »
Yamaha Genos
Yamaha MODX7
Yamaha P-125 Digital Piano
Nord Electro 5D
 

Offline voodoo

Re: New Yamaha Sonogenic SHS-500 KEYBOARD
« Reply #6 on: January 15, 2020, 01:22:35 PM »
PJ,

I have read your post about sonogenic on your blog. Very very interesting. Having organ samples on board that cannot be played on the keyboard..... it's a pity.

This reminds me on experimenting with the Yamaha CBX-K1XG

  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T5akbdp4AQs

It was possible to activate XG DSP for guitar distortion using a midi cable from out to in, and type Sysex commands using the keys of the keyboard. The solution was possible, but not practical. ;)

And the batteries of the CBX lasted only for ten minutes, because the CBX needed nearly 1 Ampere of power.

My idea: if you use an iPad app to mirror the midi commands back to the sonogenic, why not use an organ sound generator on the iPad? Like Korg Module, IK SampleTank or even IK Hammond B-3X? The smaller apps even run on an old iphone 6s for under $200. (B-3X is only for iPad, unfortunately.)

Uli
« Last Edit: January 15, 2020, 01:30:33 PM by voodoo »
Yamaha Genos
Yamaha MODX7
Yamaha P-125 Digital Piano
Nord Electro 5D
 

Offline ugawoga

Re: New Yamaha Sonogenic SHS-500 KEYBOARD
« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2020, 09:42:01 AM »
Roland AX is the boy

Sonogenic . Overpriced and is a toy basically
Even the Alesis keytar is far better
« Last Edit: January 16, 2020, 09:44:16 AM by ugawoga »
 

Offline pjd

Re: New Yamaha Sonogenic SHS-500 KEYBOARD
« Reply #8 on: January 16, 2020, 06:32:16 PM »
Roland AX is the boy

Sonogenic . Overpriced and is a toy basically
Even the Alesis keytar is far better

The little brother, SHS-300, is a total toy. The SHS-500 is reasonably well-made. It is essentially an E-series tone generator in a Reface-like package.

I won't be using it as a keytar so much as a very lightweight rehearsal keyboard (3.5 pounds) I'm getting too old to haul a shed-load of gear around.  :)  I'll plug it into the same JBL Charge 2 that I use for Reface YC. Completely battery powered.

All the best -- pj
 

Offline pjd

Re: New Yamaha Sonogenic SHS-500 KEYBOARD
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2020, 06:47:33 PM »
My idea: if you use an iPad app to mirror the midi commands back to the sonogenic, why not use an organ sound generator on the iPad? Like Korg Module, IK SampleTank or even IK Hammond B-3X? The smaller apps even run on an old iphone 6s for under $200. (B-3X is only for iPad, unfortunately.)

Hi Uli --

I'm having fun exploring this thing and have built a MIDI Designer control interface for both the panel voices and the GM voices. The free midimittr app is good enough to echo MIDI back to the SHS-500 (with LOCAL OFF).

Over in the E-series section of the Forum, I've been conversing with Michael about the E453/E463 DSP effects. I need to look into a song file recorded on E453 or E463 to see DSP control events. Michael believes they are MIDI Meta Events. They might give me some clue about what Yamaha built into both the recent E4x3 and the SHS-500.

I think the difference in volume that I noted between the panel voices and GM voices is due to touch sensitivity. I'm going to give that a go today and see if there are any XG SysEx to control that. Working with XGLite is iffy because Yamaha's documentation concerning XG vs. XGLite is sketchy.

Yep, the IK Multimedia Hammond sounds pretty good. I drove the Garageband B-3 over Bluetooth MIDI for cheap thrills. Still like the immediacy of the Reface YC -- real sliders and buttons.  :D  It's a shame that I'll take only one mini-board (Sonogenic or YC) to rehearsals.

BTW, I re-read your review post. I like the EPiano and jazz guitar for the soul/pop stuff that I play. Analogon is a decent fill-in for funky clav.

Hey, hey, take care and thanks -- pj
« Last Edit: January 16, 2020, 06:49:30 PM by pjd »
 

Offline DrakeM

Re: New Yamaha Sonogenic SHS-500 KEYBOARD
« Reply #10 on: January 17, 2020, 12:45:23 PM »
interesting, yes