Synth Site: Yamaha: W-5 /7 synths: User reviews Add review
Average rating: 3.8 out of 5
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writes:
I use this synth at school in Jazz band.. It's a well made synth, in terms of casing and all, but...I can't stand the sounds or system.

The way the system is made makes it very hard to actually work with the keyboard. When I was allowed to borrow it for a week, and take it home, I had a chance to use it too the extent I used my Casio CTK-601. I tried to record a song on it, using the onboard recording method, and was baffeled (compared to my Casio, which I was able to record onto the day I got it w/o referencing the manual). Furthermore, the fact that, as far as I know, I am unable to turn off touch-response irritates me. Even now that I'm in Jazz band (and required to play this synth), I still have yet to find the options to record tracks to the onboard memory, and to edit the patches (no single button, like on my Casio). Oh, and one other thing: Where's the back-lit display (as on the CTK-611)?

As for sounds, well...IMO, the AWM and FM synthesis combination is not all that good. The pianos sound kinda strange, as does the trumpet. Other sounds, such as the strings, sound like they were synthesized to me, not realistic. Same goes with any of the brass, woodwind, or string intruments. However, I will admit that the squarewave and drums do sound quite good. The squarewave is the only sound I ever tried to reproduce on my Casio (with good results). The rest of the synth-sounds also sound pretty good, but not that good. I despise how the PolySynth sounds. And the basses and guitars (it's hard to tell apart the Overdriven Guitar and Distortion Guitar!).

Also, I've tried patching this into my computer to use as a midi device. It played pretty good, but the fullness in sound just wasn't there. Neither was that bassy feeling of a good SynthBass 2 or a low SawTooth. Out of the 600 or so MIDI's I have, I have found only one that sound good: The RoboCop theme. But, by the time the week was over, I was almost crying for my Casio back.

To conclude, I don't recommend this synth very much. I would recommend others, like Casio, Roland, and Alesis (Casio on top of all). But, even if you are the type who make techno music, or music using lots of synthsounds (like me), you realize that the Squarewave isn't the only sound, and that others, such as the SawTooth, SynthBass 1/2, ect., don't cut it.

Rating: 1 out of 5 posted Tuesday-Nov-28-2000 at 18:58
Elliott Forman a professional user from United States writes:
I have had the w7 for the longest time and I can do anything with it. I have had every possible upgrade for it that has been made available. I can make great sounds, but I would love to have everyone elses. It needs more sounds for sale. Know where I can find some? I still love it..

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Friday-Nov-17-2000 at 19:02
Brad Whiteley a part-time user from USA writes:
Even though it wasn't my first choice I couldn't beat the price I got on a W5. Even though it took a long time (over two years) for me to feel comfortable I now really like it. Pianos arent great but they do sound as good if not better than newer synths that I've played. The Cat is a great organ, wah clav sounds great with drums and bass. I wish it did have a mono mode and portamento for the leads. The rhodes are so bad though I had to go get a real suitcase.

Rating: 4 out of 5 posted Monday-May-29-2000 at 01:07
Gregg Anderson a part-timer user from Mankato, MN USA writes:
I have a version 2 W5 with the piano add-on board.

Good all-around versitile synth, though acoustic Pianos, and pop/rock-use organs are mediocre. Good strings, pads, guitars, and basses. Lousy sax, brass, and choral/voice.

I gig with my W5 2-3x a week as my main board now. I have not been plagued with the floppy problem, but I rarely use the floppy because of the reputation. I keep all patches loaded into 'multi' banks that I call up for each song. I would not recommend relying on the floppy drive if playing live.

The keyboard action is fairly good and fast, though it could be a little stiffer. It's hard not to bring a few black keys with you when playing chords using d's, g's, and a's. DEFINITELY not for the sloppy player or serious piano.

Live performance with it is great. I set up all patches for a song into 'multi's that are easily accessible with buttons for each patch/channel right above the keyboard. flipping through patches live with this board is not a problem. A more configurable footswitch option to change these patches would be preferable, however.

The only REAL drawback that would prevent me from buying this board again is Yamaha customer service. Do NOT expect good treatment after you have put your money in their pockets. The promised (and documented) PC editor, "WEdit", was cancelled when it was 3/4 finished, so that they could program an editor for their new synth. Everyone waiting for this editor, and drooling over the screenshots, is SOL. Yamaha stopped making the W5, and already has our money, so they dropped it. This says a lot. I needed a replacement manual, and was charged almost $40 for it. This kind of thing should be offered as a customer service offering, not for profit.

Rating: 3 out of 5 posted Monday-May-03-1999 at 17:59
Nate a hobbyist user from USA writes:
I had always wanted a synthesizer/workstation, and - aside from my pitch

wheel problem (internal sticking effect) - know that I made the absolute

correct choice in purchasing my W7.

Rating: 5 out of 5 posted Thursday-Aug-06-1998 at 00:24
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