Yamaha P115 Digital Piano Review

Yamaha has gained a reputation as one of the leading manufacturers of portable pianos, thanks in no part to their affordable and reliable P-Series.

The Yamaha P115 could very well continue this trend, with the successor to the very popular P105, including a host of useful features that will certainly appeal to those who are looking to play alongside other musicians in the near future.

There’s certainly a few drawbacks to the P115 as well, but that’s to be expected from most entry-level portable keyboards, especially one with a such a competitive price like the P115.

Let’s take a closer look at both the good and bad of the Yamaha P115:

  • Product Overview
  • 88-key digital piano
  • Weighted keys
  • 14 Voices including reverb and chorus effects
  • Auxiliary outputs, headphone and USB ports
  • Stand and pedal included

Hardware

A big selling-point that Yamaha pushed with the P115 was the fact that it is ideal for the travelling musician.

Players that want to be able to easily carry their piano without the need to constantly make meticulous arrangements would certainly find this model appealing according to Yamaha, which is why it comes with a standard set-up.

With just the keyboard, stand and a few minor accessories, the Yamaha P115 is a no-nonsense product that will be simple to set up. All players need to do is place it on a stand, attach the pedal, and then plug the unit in and it’s good to go.

The material used for the piano is certainly strong enough to handle the bumps and bangs associated with portable instruments, yet it still maintains an element of elegance despite being very robust.

According to most reports, it’s very hard to damage the P115’s case, which will be appealing to players that are forever on the move. This is good news to hear when you consider no kit bag is included with the purchase, although most players will likely have one on hand.

Usability

How easy a keyboard is to play is always one of the first signs of quality, and the Yamaha P115 definitely delivers in this regard. It’s a high-quality product that will feel fantastic to play, especially for the more experienced musician that has used a premium piano.

The keyboard feels very authentic, being comparable to acoustic pianos in many areas. For instance, the P115 features differential weighting that closely resembles the weight of the chords of a grand piano, making it a great option for players looking for a step-up in quality for their digital piano.

However, that’s not to say the P115 isn’t suitable for less experienced players. The keys are wide enough to prevent players from constantly hitting the wrong keys, which is certainly worthwhile for those that are prone to accidentally hitting the wrong notes.

There’s a good amount of space available for music sheets too, mainly because there’s a lack of complex buttons and controls on the P115, and this will be useful for many musicians using small fonts.

Performance

Of course, there’s little point in getting hyped for a digital keyboard if it cannot replicate the sound and performance of the real thing. Thankfully, the Yamaha P115 delivers on the performance front, providing fantastic quality sound reproduction.

A total of 14 high quality voices are available on the P115, and almost every one of these performs to a very high standard, being clear and accurate. Furthermore, there’s a selection of useful features that many will find useful, particularly professional musicians looking for a keyboard to gig with.

For example, the Sound Boost option allows players to adjust the EQ as needed to help brighten the sound when playing alongside other instruments, which will be very appealing to pianists playing live shows.

Additionally, the P115 comes with a Duelling Piano Partner feature that allows the player to continue playing with one hand while using allowing the feature to play accompanying music that is controlled by the opposite hand.

Capable of 192-note polyphony and damper resonance, the P115 allow more advanced pieces of music to be played with a high level of realism.

Interface

As previously mentioned, the Yamaha P115 is a no-nonsense model that doesn’t include anything unnecessary. This results in a somewhat minimal control interface, but that doesn’t detract from the useful features that are already present.

The controls are few and far between, but those that are included serve their purpose well, managing to encompass a surprisingly large number of features. However, some of the more advanced features require the pressing of two buttons rather than one, which some may find irritating.

There’s also a distinct lack of LCD screen on the P115, although Yamaha appears to have done this with the hope that players will make use of their accompanying app.

This app offers more than a standard LCS screen would, including the ability to control the piano and offering useful guides for playing the keyboard without having to adjust preferred settings. It also offers more controls than the standard interface, making it worth a download.

Should you want to purchase a compatible LCD screen for the P115 it is sold separately and doesn’t come with the cheapest price tag, retailing at several hundred pounds.

Connectivity

Perhaps one the most disappointed areas of the Yamaha P115 is its connectivity features. As a quality digital piano, it feels that there are some features that are lacking, and those that are included are somewhat basic.

Headphones can be connected along with inputs and outputs for standard devices, and it’s worthwhile to play this model using headphones, as the internal speaks aren’t the best. However, you can connect the P115 to PA systems and other audio devices through the auxiliary outputs.

Final Thoughts

The Yamaha P115 is a fine piece of hardware that will appeal to a broad spectrum of musicians. It’s clear that his unit is geared toward a musician on the go, as it has all the hallmarks of a high-quality portable keyboard, including a lightweight design, quality sound, and useful features such as Sound Boost.

While some of the more advanced features for a digital piano are missing, the P115 still offers a great level of performance and will not let down any musicians playing it at live shows, as sound reproduction is certainly high.

Should you not be deterred by the lack of MIDI support or the fact there is no LCD screen available unless you use the necessary app, this is a digital piano that is well worth investing in, even more so if you are a live performer looking for a reliable yet affordable product.