Synth DB

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Yamaha | S08


The S08 gives you professional quality sound and performance in a stylish, lightweight package – and at an affordable price. In fact, it has many features that you would expect to find only in synthesizers costing much more. For starters, it's equipped with a full-size weighted keyboard that offers a remarkably realistic touch. It's also packed with over 700 of Yamaha's finest voices, many of which have been taken right from our award-winning S80 professional synthesizer. We've even added in a complete XG and General MIDI Level 2 voice set to complement the built-in SMF (Standard MIDI File) playback sequencer. But that's not all. For the live performer, there's a convenient Category Search function that makes it easy to find the voices you want on stage. And for the studio musician, we've added a USB MIDI interface and a SmartMedia™ card slot. For those looking for an affordable weighted action synthesizer for the studio or stage, the S08 is a dream come true.

Superb Weighted Action

The S08 is equipped with Yamaha's original Balanced Hammer Effect (BH) keyboard – a true weighted 88-note keyboard based on the highly acclaimed Graded Hammer Effect (GH) keyboard found in the Yamaha P series digital pianos. Although a graded keyboard is ideal for playing piano sounds (it's designed so that the lower keys have a heavier touch), it's not practical for playing voices such as drums and basses. The S08's BH keyboard has been specially designed to accommodate both the need for weighted feel and quick response across the entire length of the keyboard, allowing you to enjoy smooth weighted action regardless of which voice you play.

Over 700 High-Quality Voices

From beautiful grand pianos and orchestral instruments to punchy synthesizers and bass sounds for the dance floor, the S08 gives you the equivalent of 28 MB* worth of high-quality AWM2 voices – over 700 in all. Many of these waveforms are borrowed from the flagship S80 synthesizer. When connected to an external sequencer, up to 16 instrument parts can be played simultaneously for composing and playing back fully arranged songs. And because the S08 provides up to 64 notes of polyphony, you need not worry about running out of notes when playing long sustaining passages or sequencing complex arrangements. *When converted to 16-bit linear format.

Onboard 24-bit Effects

Digital effects are an integral part of a synthesizer's voice architecture. And to ensure the highest standards of voice quality, the S08 uses Yamaha's own 24-bit effects processing chip to provide you with a complete range of high-quality effects, including 17 reverb types, 17 chorus types and 54 variation effects such as delay and distortion.

Portable, Lightweight Design

Although the S08 is an 88-note weighted action synthesizer, its lightweight makes it the ideal keyboard for the gigging musician who needs portability yet demands the feel of a real piano.

Full XG and GM Level 2 Compatibility

The S08 is fully compatible with Yamaha XG and General MIDI Level 2 specifications, both of which provide an extended range of instruments and effects over the original General MIDI standard. The XG standard also allows detailed editing of the voices and support for external audio inputs. This means that XG and GM2 sequences will sound their very best played back on the S08.

Voice Category Search Function

Having hundreds of voices at your fingertips is a wonderful thing...that is, until you find yourself having to look through them one by one to find that particular string voice you liked so much. The Category Search function makes it a snap to find just the voice you're looking for by allowing you to search through the preset voices by instrument type – such as Piano, Organ, Bass or Strings.

Large Custom Display

Unlike the small displays used in competing keyboards, the S08's custom liquid crystal display makes it easy to see the currently selected voice and other information at a glance. Its backlit panel ensures visibility on a darkened stage.

Data Parameter Dial

Scrolling through voices and editing parameters is easier than ever thanks to a convenient control dial.

Sequencer Playback from SmartMedia™

A newly designed playback sequencer lets you play back standard MIDI files (format 0) directly from a SmartMedia™ memory card. Transferring MIDI files to a SmartMedia card from your Mac or PC is smooth and easy thanks to the included Card Filer software. The S08's Chain Playback function gives you uninterrupted playback of up to 100 songs – perfect for live performance or simply practicing at home with sequenced accompaniments.

USB MIDI Interface

Equipped with a USB MIDI interface, the S08 can connect directly to any USB-equipped Windows® or Macintosh® computer. This feature, together with pitch and modulation wheels, makes it an ideal MIDI controller for computer-based music production – amateur or pro.

Voice Editor and Sequencer Software Included!

The S08 is bundled with a variety of useful software to help you get the most out of your new investment right out of the box. Voice Editor lets you edit the synthesizer parameters in full detail from your Mac or PC to make your own original voices. Card Filer makes it easy to organize files on SmartMedia™ cards and transfer data between the S08 and your computer. Sequencing software is also included, which allows you to compose fully arranged songs with the S08 and a Windows® PC.
Engine TypeDigital
Voices (max)64
Filter (VCF)2
Envelope (VCA)4
FX11 reverbs, 11 choruses, 54 variations
MemoryPreset: 480, User: 128
Drums20 drumkits, 2 user
Key typeKeys
MidiI-O-T, USB
Produced:2004 - 2004
Legend: Obvious Y: Yes, N: No, N/A: Not Applicable
VCO Voltage Controlled Oscillator DCO Digital Controlled Oscillator
LFO Low Frequency Oscillator Sub Sub Oscillator
VCF Voltage Controlled Filter VCA Voltage Controlled Amplifier
Velocity As with a piano, the harder you hit a key, the louder the sound, unlike most organs which always produce the same loudness no matter how hard you hit a key. Aftertouch Pressing a key after you activated it. Channel Aftertouch, no matter which key, it will send a Channel message. Poly Aftertouch, sends the pressure per key instead of the whole channel.
Values for OSC, LFO, Filter, Envelope are per voice unless stated otherwise.


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