Yamaha PSR1100 Arranger Workstation Digital Keyboard

YAMAHA Updated: 2007-10-03
Yamaha PSR1100 Arranger Workstation Digital Keyboard

If you're looking for a musical instrument that has that little something extra ("je ne sais quoi" as they say in French), then look no further than the PSR-1100. It is the first in the line of Arranger Workstations from Yamaha and has a huge array of features including large LCD with Score and Lyric capability, USB connectivity, 4 sections to each style, User memory for storing songs and other data, 32 channels of MIDI via USB and more!

The first thing you notice is the huge LCD screen
PSR1100 ScreenThere are many advantages to having a larger screen. For one thing, it conveys a lot more information at one time. For example, the screen on the PSR-1100 is able to show you mixer settings at a glance, the chords you are playing, what sounds are on the right and left side of the keyboard, score screenwhat Style or MIDI file is currently playing, score and lyrics. In fact, if you record a song into the PSR-1100 using the arranger features, it will not only display the notes you played, but the chords as well. The bottom line about having a bigger screen is that it's your window into how the music is being created – you might as well make it a big one.

Computer Connectivity – Why it's important
The PSR-1100 has a USB port on the back, making it extremely easy to connect the keyboard to a computer. Once you're connected, you open up your music to a wealth of possibilities. From your computer, you are able to copy data to and from the User or Floppy drive in the instrument to your computer's hard drive using the included File Utility software. It's convenient, fast and easy. And MIDI has never been so simple. Just install the included drivers and when you open your favorite music software program the PSR-1100 shows up as USB output ports One and Two – giving you 32 channels of MIDI playback.

Download music data from the Internet and play it on your keyboard
In the past, when you wanted to learn a new song, you would probably head off to your local music store where hopefully they had the piano sheet music for the song you eagerly were looking to play and sing. This music generally contained the left and right hand piano parts, chords and lyrics. Recently, Yamaha, Hal Leonard and Sebelius got together to create digital interactive sheet music. Here's how it works. Using your computer, go to, find your favorite Scorch® song(s), purchase them and download them into your computer. At this point, if you like, you can change the key and print the music using your printer. But it doesn't stop there!

By connecting the PSR-1100 to your computer you can transfer the digital sheet music into your keyboard and it will play the song for you as the music and lyrics scroll by in the screen. If you would like to embellish the arrangement, the keyboard will actually "read" the chords in the song (that's called XF) and play a Style with backing tracks like bass, drums and guitar along with the piano music! You can try the song as a ballad, jazz, country or rock – or no backing tracks at all. Finally, go ahead and play the piano part, using any of the built-in features like transpose, metronome and tempo controls. With digital sheet music, you can play it your way!

A Keyboard with more Style
The PSR-1100 features Styles (accompaniment patterns) in a variety of different musical genres including Rock, Jazz, Latin, Country and Dance. All you have to do is play the chords with your left hand as you perform and the selected Style will automatically play along, instantly following the chords you play. This is live playing at it's best. For even greater diversity, this keyboard is the first in the line to offer 4 sections to the built-in Styles. For example, you could use the A section for the Verse, B section for the Chorus, C for the Bridge and D for a Solo. In addition, each Style has 3 different Intros and Endings and will automatically fill, if you like, between sections.

Ease of operation
There are many tools in the keyboard that make it easy to be a power user from the first day you own the keyboard.

* Direct Access Button: Press this button and the function you would like to adjust, for example Pitch Bend, and the LCD screen instantly takes you there. Saves wading through menus and sub-menus.
* Music Finder: Complete keyboard setups by song title. The keyboard selects an appropriate voice for the right hand melody, the correct musical style and the correct tempo. Simply call up a song title and start playing.
* Quick Record: To record a song, just press the Record button. Recording starts as soon as you start playing the keyboard and will record everything you play - the Style, Left & Layer Voices and Multi pads or a single track.
* One Touch Setting (OTS): Provides you with a recommended voice with effects for each Section of each Style (4 per style). Can be set to change automatically or you can select one of the four buttons. For example, on a jazz style, one OTS might be piano, the next jazz guitar with a little echo, the third sax with reverb and the forth might be piano and vibes layered.
* Multi Pads: These four buttons change to match the genre of each Style (or you can change them yourself) and can be used to play a number of short pre-recorded rhythmic and melodic sequences that can be used to add impact and variety to your keyboard playing. Translation: MIDI-Loops.
* Built-in Help: Help messages give you explanations & descriptions of the main functions and features found in the keyboard. Language choices include English, Japanese, German, French, Spanish or Italian.
* Demo: In addition to the main demos showing some of the more advanced features found in the keyboard, there is also a short demo for every sound.
* Mixing Console: To change voices, adjust levels, panning, transpose, tuning, pitch bend and effects on various tracks or parts that you play, simply press the Mixing Console button and make adjustments using graphical representations of rotary pots and faders.
* Registration Memory: Set the keyboard up just the way you like and take a digital snapshot by memorizing it to one of the Registration buttons. Load and save banks of eight registrations to User memory or floppy. The eight Registration buttons are conveniently located just above the keyboard.

Sounds Good To Me
The PSR-1100 is compatible with commercially available song data including GM (General MIDI), XG, Disk Orchestra Collection (DOC), and XF. The keyboard comes with 287 voices, 480 XG voices, 16 drum kits and is 32-note polyphonic. Additional features include a selection of special samples called Sweet and Cool! Voices. Sweet Voices are special voices from Yamaha that reproduce all the natural expression and vibrato of their respective acoustic instruments; for example, Sweet Flute and Sweet Trumpet. Cool! Voices feature samples of electronically amplified instruments like guitar and electric piano. To get the most out of these great voices, there is a Stereo 2-way speaker system with bass ports.

And to capture all of this sound, you'll find a built-in 16-track sequencer for recording and editing your songs. And remember, you can save your songs and transfer them via USB directly to your computer for further editing or attaching to e-mail. Finally, to round it all out, there are two Foot Pedal jacks, transpose and tuning, auto harmony for the right hand, metronome and a CD-ROM containing File Utility software and USB Drivers. It's all here.