Yamaha DGX-230 – Most Affordable in DGX Portable Grand Line
This was a Christmas gift for my niece. She wanted to get into music and her mom asked me to look at which keyboard they should get. I had positive experience using Yamaha’s DGX models and this was the least expensive in the list, sold on most online stores around $200-300. The price of the next model in line was doubled, so this was no-brainer decision. Besides, I didn’t want to get a piano that she will outgrow fast.
When we opened the box, I was trying to contain my delight when I saw the keyboard. This was Yamaha’s most affordable and portable grand piano, and it looked almost the same as top line DGX 650! It was also a relief that the delivery included a power adapter. I’ve read in several reviews online that some sellers do not include the AC adapter, and that you still have to purchase it separately. Although this piano runs on 6 D size batteries, I wouldn’t recommend that. Hours of playing can drain batteries fast and that wouldn’t be practical. If ever you got the piano without it, the compatible adaptor type for Yamaha DGX-230 is Yamaha PA150.
I looked at my niece’s confused but excited face over the numerous buttons on top of the keyboard as we assembled it over the stand. This just had 76 keys and was just about meter long. My niece gave her best to carry it on top of the stand as we assembled it. With almost 20lbs, this was heavy for a 12 year old to carry around, but it was the going to stay in her room so there was no worry.
Over the two weeks holiday I got, I gave my niece introductory piano lessons with her DGX 230. We got to know this keyboard really well. It has a good feel to it, and the 76 piano-style keys was a sure winner on this model. Having the right kind of keys to start with, even with digital pianos, is very important to every piano student. This one has the right key sizes, and I’m sure my niece won’t feel so alienated if she progresses into 88keys in the future.
I won’t deny, there’s really that difference between weighted keys and this keyboard’s graded soft touch keys. Nevertheless, the resistance of the GST keys on this piano responded well on each note. It doesn’t spring back very fast, but it’s also not too slow like temper foam. It has good graded resistance all over the keyboard. First test I made was on the far left key, pressed it as soft as possible several times, and I can still hear the teenie tiny soft sound. Alternated between the next key to it and I can still hear the two different notes. Light touch equals soft sound, and the harder I play, the louder the volume and tone.
Here’s a good sample of how Yamaha DGX-230 sounds.
What else did I find out good out of this piano? My niece loved trying out the different voices and effects. This model has a total of 489 voices, 12 of that are Drum or SFX kits. It also has 5 sweet and 3 cool voices. It didn’t sound like sirens howling over her small room, but of course I know that she’ll later discover that effect when she plays with chorus, reverb and harmony settings.
This model has 9 reverb levels set on 4 types; concert hall, small room, stage, and plate. I’ve set it on Room 1 (equivalent to small room) and there wasn’t too much audio reflection, in fact it sounded like its OFF. This was just fine and advised my niece to stick to it and read on music notes about reverb and chorus levels later. Chorus 1-2 sounded warm and solid. When I showed her the flanger levels, she laughed and told me it sounded like his dad’s old electronic playlist. I made no comments and decided that was the end of the lesson on that.
Songs and Recording Functions
Yamaha DGX-230 can record maximum of 5 tracks or the manual says 10,000 notes, which is one thing I liked on this portable grand line-up. This enables my students and budding artists to record their performances for personal review later, or to be merged with other pieces or mashups. Just last week, my niece sent me her mashup recording of Let It Go and Let Her Go (She got the inspiration from Youtube) and it came out really wonderful!
Note on Performance Assistance Technology
PAT is amazing for beginners, but I won’t recommend my students to be dependent on it. First, it automatically changes the sound of the notes, which means you can’t get any notes wrong! And that doesn’t help in mastering pieces and making students learn more about the sound that each key makes and how it comes out in harmony with the others. We set it to Melody, my niece selected a MIDI song and just hit any key as if she already mastered the piece. Her mom thought that PAT was guiding her, and we just looked at each other and grinned.
With PAT turned ON, you can hit any keys and it still sounds right with the sample melody. The only changes you’ll notice is the pitch going higher and higher as you go up the keyboard. What good is it then on learning how to play the piano? The background accompaniment can guide students on tempo. Also, its good on practicing or mastering one hand at a time. For beginners who are still mastering on how to coordinate all their fingers on the keyboard, they can use Chord setting to their advantage.
Set the Chord free mode and PAT helps you concentrate on your right hand even though you have mistakes on the left. It automatically corrects the left hand notes.
Self-study with Yamaha’s Education Suite
My niece and I tried exploring Yamaha’s education suite in DGX-230. Although I’ve tried this before on other models, I know that this will be very useful for her self-study. In fact, most of my students who have DGX pianos learn a lot of pieces with this. Chose FurElise in right hand only with Lesson Waiting mode. She tried for couple minutes and concluded that she needs to study more on reading notes. The LCD display on the piano shows the notes that she needed to press and won’t move til she gets it right. With repetition, very nifty software here.
Overall, I would highly recommend Yamaha DGX-230 for beginners looking for inexpensive digital pianos that’s packed with excellent features and that won’t render as too basic after a year of lessons. Just don’t expect much on connectivity and portability. This model has 1 USB port that you can connect to PC, but you have to download the MIDI driver. And this is where we got into a problem. We found out that Yamaha still doesn’t have compatible USB drivers for Mac OS X Yosemite.
Visit the Yamaha Digital Piano page for more info and recommendations: http://digitalpianoreviewssite.com/yamaha/
Filed Under: Digital Piano ReviewsTagged With: Yamaha, yamaha DGX 230Sours: http://www.digitalpianoreviewssite.com/yamaha-dgx-230-most-affordable-in-dgx-portable-grand-line/
DGX-230/YPG-235 Owner's Manual
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Table of Contents
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How to connect DGX-230 to android phone/tablet?
OTG is USB On-The-Go, which is a spec that allows a device to act as a USB host even though historically speaking it did not act as a USB host device and hence did not have the type of USB port (meaning type A versus type B) that a USB host device has.
This was generally more of an issue with Android tablets and Android phones, which could use USB to connect to a USB host such as a computer for transferring data, but could not itself be used as a USB host device for things like USB flash drives or USB peripheral devices such as USB-MIDI keyboards.
OTG is now included in the Android OS, but it didn't use to be.
Regardless, you need an OTG cable or OTG adapter to connect USB peripheral drives and devices to the USB port of an Android tablet or phone, similar to how you need a special adapter to connect those same peripheral drives and devices to an iOS tablet or phone.
Anyway, the DGX-230 has a USB-MIDI port, but not MIDI IN/OUT ports, and as far as I know it isn't class compliant, so it needs the USB-MIDI driver to work with most USB host devices. I'm guessing that it might work with an iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch without needing Yamaha's USB-MIDI driver, because iOS doesn't seem to require it; my old YPT-400 works beautifully with my iPad without Yamaha's driver, even though the YPT-400 isn't class compliant and requires Yamaha's driver when connecting to Windows and Mac computers.
EDIT-- Sorry, I hit Post before I was finished.
I don't know if it will help in your situation, but if you're able to use the DGX-230 with your Windows computer then you might be able to use rtpMIDI to communicate MIDI back and forth between the Windows computer and the Android phone via your Wi-Fi network:
- The DGX-230 connects to the Windows computer via USB.
- The Windows computer uses Yamaha's USB-MIDI driver to convert the USB signal to standard MIDI data.
- The Windows computer uses the free rtpMIDI program to transmit the MIDI over your Wi-Fi network.
- The Android phone receives the MIDI over your Wi-Fi network.
I've never done this myself, so I'm not sure whether the app on your Android phone needs to be programmed to accept MIDI from over a network, or if you need a second app that creates a virtual MIDI port that your first app can connect to, etc.
It just so happens that I got an Amazon Fire 7 tablet today during Prime Day. Amazon's Fire OS is forked off of Android, and I already have rtpMIDI installed on my Windows computer, so I'll investigate and see if there are any apps for Fire OS or Android that I can test this with.
230 yamaha dgx
Yamaha DGX230 76-Key Digital Piano Review
Would you love to play the piano but don’t have the space for one or the money to cover the cost? The solution just might be the Yamaha DGX230 76-Key Digital Piano. This is a mobile alternative that sounds exactly like its big brother, the traditional piano.
Things to Consider Before Purchasing a Digital Piano
Whether you are a beginner or an experienced player, the Yamaha DGX230 76-Key Digital Piano is flexible enough to work at all levels. Yamaha provides an educational suite of lessons that is self-paced and easy for every beginner to follow. It is also designed with full keyboard mode, so it is perfect for the experienced player. It operates on electricity or battery, so your music can travel with you.
The Yamaha DGX230
Priced at $225, the Yamaha DGX230 76-Key Digital Piano is the least expensive of Yamaha’s Grand Series. When compared with the YPG 235 model which costs more, the features are exactly the same. The premium bundle includes the keyboard, Samson HP30 closed-back stereo headphones, a Yamaha PA150 power supply, and the World Tour SXKS keyboard stand.
- Great piano sound
- Large variety of built-in sounds
- Realistic touch to keys
- Realistic touch to keys
- Speakers are just adequate
- Audio is inconsistent at times
Check Current Prices
Features and Benefits
There are a number of features that are unique to this Yamaha model.
There are 100 songs that you can learn, 30 that are built in to the system and 70 included on a CD-ROM. Lessons are divided into seven levels and separated by left and right hand, so can concentrate on one at a time. The Waiting Mode pauses a song so that you can take time to find the correct note, while Your Tempo Mode matches the song to your playing speed. The system also monitors your progress and grades each level.
Imagine saving the first song you learn or creating a new composition. You can do this on the built-in recorder. Since there are multiple tracks, you can blend sounds or record multiple instruments at once.
Graded Soft Touch (GST) keys
The keyboard offers varying levels of resistance, making it more like a an acoustic piano. There is more resistance on lower notes with less in the upper range.
Full Keyboard Mode
This specialized fingering system allows you to play a chord with the right hand and base notes with the left. This most closely simulates the piano. However, if you are more comfortable with the portable keyboard format, you can easily convert to that method.
Digital Sound Processing (DSP)
This enhanced sound feature provides effects like harmony, reverb, and a chorus. The separate woofers and tweeters create a powerful stereo sound, and the bass boost on each speaker add to the strength of low end reproductions. Listen to a sample of DSP here.
You can connect to the internet with either a flash drive or USB. The Yamaha makes this easy by giving you a PC button on the keyboard. Imagine playing your songs, saving and editing them, and sharing them with your friends via email or social media!
Built in Accompaniment
A large data base of sounds and numerous tracks makes it possible for the virtual band to follow along with the chords you play.
When you are planning to purchase a musical instrument, it is important to do as much research as possible. For that reason, I have provided some alternatives that you should also investigate.
Yamaha DGX-660 88 Weighted Keys Digital Piano
The Yamaha DGX-660 Portable Grand Digital Piano. This is a top of the line Yamaha keyboard. It sells for $800 but has 88 keys and a grand piano sound and touch. This unit reproduces the tone of a Yamaha concert grand piano, and the keys are weighted for the feel of a traditional acoustic piano. You can sing along with the melody using the built-in microphone with vocal effects. The 660 connects wirelessly to the internet using any IOS device.
Compared to the Yamaha 230:
- Includes a furniture style stand
- Connects wirelessly to the internet
- Has 88 keys for a fuller piano sound
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While the Yamaha 230 is one of Amazon's highest rated keyboards, there are two other keyboards that are among the best selling:
Casio CTK2400 PPK 61-Key Portable Keyboard
Casio CTK 2400- 61 Key portable keyboard. This is smaller in size with 61 keys and 400 keyboard sounds. It is called the "rockin little keyboard" because it has such a powerful sound. The kit includes a built-in microphone and power supply. It also has a three step, self-paced, learning system. You can connect it to a music player for accompaniment. The lack of weighted hammer keys and composing capability are the only negatives. It is priced from $100 to $125.
Compared to the Yamaha 230:
- Smaller but with a powerful sound
Check Current Prices
RockJam 61-Key Electronic Keyboard
RockJam 61-key electronic keyboard. This keyboard has 100 sounds and 50 demo songs. You can add 30 songs by using your IPAD APP. You can record and playback your songs and display tracks on the LCD screen. The unit comes with headphones and has a sustain pedal, to enrich its tone. The furniture stand is easily moved. It is priced anywhere from $120 to $140.
Compared to the Yamaha 230:
- Less expensive (about the same price as the Casio)
- Many less sound alternatives and less flexibility
- Uses a sustain pedal to enrich its tone
Check Current Prices
The Yamaha DGX230 76-Key Digital Piano is a great value. Portable, powerful, and with the performance of a piano, it meets your every need. So, learn to play the piano or amaze your friends with your unique compositions. You can do it all on the Yamaha 230.
Yamaha DGX 230 Review
Yamaha is a brand that is known to make affordable entry-level musical instruments that offers excellent bang for the buck. The Yamaha DGX 230 fits that mould perfectly. In this review we’ll take a look at this 76-key digital piano that is targeted mainly at the budget-conscious beginner to early intermediate players.
The overall look and feel
There is nothing striking going on here. The Yamaha DGX-230 tries very hard to look like a premium product and it does so from a distance but up-close, you can see that there have been a few corners cut when it comes to the quality of the materials used. Do not get us wrong. It is reasonably sturdy and more than makes up for the price you pay for it. It a product on the cheaper end of the spectrum and that is quite apparent. Coming to the feel, there are no big complaints but again it lacks that smoothness you would get from a more expensive keyboard. The keys do move sideways a bit which can get annoying when doing fast runs up and down the keyboard but apart from that the keys are of pretty good quality. All the knobs and buttons respond really well and they should last a long time if treated with a bit of care. The overall look and feel won’t turn heads but exceeds expectations from a product of this price range.
The sound samples
One avenue where budget keyboards overdo it is in the sound sample area. There are over 400 sounds but most of them are unusable unless you are into something way off the beaten track. Most players will be able make use of about 20 or so of the sounds in their performances with the rest being there just to make up the numbers. As a beginner though it is nice to think that you have lots of options and the Yamaha DGX-230 achieves that. The sounds that you will be able to use are pretty decent and while they might not stand up to the sound samples found on a top shelf product, it still is very useable. In most cases only people with a trained ear will be able to make out any discernible difference. As long as you are playing to a casual audience or practicing by yourself, the quality of the on-board samples should not bother you that much.
Since this Yamaha instrument is marketed as a digital piano, it is only natural to expect it to feel like a real piano but like most entry-level options, it fails. The good thing though is that the DGX-230 is the closest you will come to a replacement for a real piano at this price. The keys of the Yamaha DGX-230 don’t feel as heavy as they would on a normal piano, but it is quite close. The feel is more akin to vintage synths and you can make it sound like an acoustic piano with a bit of effort. It is not a true replacement for a piano but at this price you really cannot expect it to be. What it can do really well is give beginners a fair idea of how the real thing might feel like. It is a great stepping stone and making the transition from this keyboard to a more genuine feeling digital piano or an actual piano is quite easy and can be done quite effortlessly.
Connectivity and extra features
Just like any other digital piano in this segment, the Yamaha DGX-230 is packed to the brim with features. Whether these features are useful is a different matter. Let us start with the various connectivity features. It can be hooked up to a computer via a USB type B cable and be used as MIDI controller. Can it replace a purpose built midi controller? Probably not. The velocity curve of the keys isn’t very precise and that can lead to inaccurate sound production in your DAW. What it can be used for is playing parts that require the full length of the 76 keys like a backing piano arrangement.
There is a 6-track recorder on board which can come in handy for practicing and some light-hearted performances but seems a bit under-equipped if you have something like a one-man-band type of performance in mind. The bass boost is great if you are into trance or disco type of music but for normal piano playing it can actually be a hindrance as it tends to drown the mids and stifle highs. The master EQ is also more of a gimmick. It is not a true EQ as all you get are five preset EQ settings which can either be a hit or a miss depending on the sound samples you are using and the sound system you are playing through. These work okay with the on-board speakers but begin to falter when the keyboard is plugged into a PA system or a set of amps.
The full keyboard mode: Is it just a gimmick?
This is another feature that is heavily mentioned in the feature description of the Yamaha DGX-230 keyboard and is definitely something that is not offered by its peers. We were a bit sceptical about it from the get go as features like these on entry-level keyboards end up being nothing more than flashy gimmicks that are rarely useable. This one though is quite useful if you want to use the auto-accompaniment and are a piano player accustomed to just fingering a single note with the left hand and playing chord with the right hand.
Normally, keyboards require you to play the entire chord with left hand for the auto-accompaniment to work properly and while you can get away with playing just a single note for major chords, every other chord has to be articulated with at least three notes if you want to get the right chord playing in the auto-accompaniment. What this feature does is that it detects the chords from the right hand instead allowing pianists to play like they normally do with the auto-accompaniment working in perfect sync. Is this useful? That depends on how much auto-accompaniment you use and how accustomed you are to just playing single notes with your left hand. If you do not belong in this group then this is one feature you will never engage in your life.
Sound quality and ease of operation
While you cannot expect earth shattering sound quality from a digital piano in this range, the Yamaha DGX-230 manages to do a pretty decent job. Through a professional sound setup, the samples sound pretty great and is comparable to more expensive digital pianos but the on-board speakers do feel like a bit of a let-down. It lacks punch in the mids and highs and can spoil the feel of a performance if your piece has strong bass lines as the bass can drown out the higher frequencies. This does make the auto-accompaniment a bit punchier but as a digital piano, the frequency response of the speakers are a failure.
The Yamaha DGX 230 is quite easy to use as it is primarily targeted towards beginners. It hardly takes a few hours to get acquainted with all the various features allowing you to concentrate on the actual playing without getting distracted by trying to remember where a certain feature is.
The Yamaha Education Suite
Like every other entry-level keyboard, this one too comes with an education suite that claims it can help you master playing the piano. This is nothing more than a glorified gimmick. Like every other similar system, it can at best help you learn a few songs but it can barely impress upon anyone the subtle nuances of music. This is just one of those things that manufacturers such as Yamaha put on their products as everyone else is also doing the same. The reality is that this is probably one of the most useless features on this digital piano and you will still need a teacher or a music school to help you become a true musician.
Effects and auto-accompaniment
This was one area that pleasantly surprised us. Generally, the on-board effects are worthless and you are better off using an external processor or something found on your amp. Many of the reverb options on this piano were quite useable. The chorus effects were a bit underwhelming and the harmony effects were quite mediocre though.
If you are someone who uses the auto-accompaniment feature a lot then the Yamaha DGX-230 is the best keyboard you can get at this price point. Not only are some of the styles really great, you also have the option of adding more styles through a computer. The “Full Keyboard Mode” is especially handy and allows even hardcore pianists to dabble their hands in some auto-accompaniment. While no auto-accompaniment system can replace a true band, the one found on this digital piano is as good as this system can get.
When shopping in this price range, it is best to keep expectations low and realistic. If you look at this digital piano from that viewpoint then you will be pleasantly surprised quite a few times. You get bucket loads of features, pretty decent build-quality and a passable sound quality and feel. It is a great first or second keyboard. Experienced players and pros should stay away from this product as it won’t satisfy you even as a practice keyboard. However, for those who are still in the early parts of their journey to becoming a pianist or a keyboardist, the DGX 230 is a godsend as it is one of best starting points that is very forgiving and makes the learning curve quite bearable.
- Excellent value for money
- Great connectivity options
- Great reverb effects
- Superb auto-accompaniment features
- On-board speakers drown out the mids and highs
- Limited EQ options
- Lacks the feel of a true piano
- Rated 2.5 stars
- Yamaha DGX 230
- Reviewed by: Andreas Moller
Published on: November 5, 2018
Last modified: May 19, 2020
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Perfect for beginners, this Yamaha Portable Grand delivers rich stereo piano sounds -- plus hundreds more sounds and styles, a built-in recorder, and more.
Package Includes: Yamaha DGX230, Samson HP30 Headphones, Keyboard Stand and Yamaha PA150 Power Supply.
Yamaha's Most Portable Grand!
If you're looking for a portable electric keyboard with authentic-feeling semi-weighted action, the Yamaha DGX230 should be a serious contender for your attention! With Yamaha's Graded Soft Touch keyboard, which offers more resistance on the lower notes just like a real acoustic piano, you'll be to cultivate a finer technique. The 76-key DGX230 comes with a vast database of different sounds for you to explore, and it's also preloaded with numerous accompaniment tracks, so you can practice your ensemble playing even when you're alone. The DGX230 may be the least expensive model in the Yamaha Portable Grand series, but it sacrifices little by way of functionality compared to instruments costing many times more.
A Weighted Action Cultivates More Subtle Technique
Yamaha's Graded Soft Touch design gives your playing experience depth and subtlety. The action is weighted more heavily on the bass end, just as on a real piano. On the higher end the action is slightly lighter, allowing your fast runs and chording to move effortlessly.
Rich Stereo Sound
The DGX230 offers true 2-way stereo sound with a separate woofer and treble cone in each 6-watt speaker, helping Yamaha's rich grand piano sound to come through. And when you need more low end, the onboard Bass Boost is there for you. The DSP onboard is Yamaha quality through and through, allowing all onboard sounds to be tweaked with the included Master EQ, Reverb, and Chorus functions. Want to practice in silence? Just plug in to the 1/4" headphone jack.
A Feast of Sounds and Backing Tracks
The DGX230 improves upon Yamahya's popular DGX220 with the expansion to 489 sounds and 160 musical accompaniment tracks. And if that's not enough, you can connect it to your computer via the USB port and download new sounds and tracks from Yamaha's internet Music Finder Service. The included software interface makes it easy! Want to get back to Yamaha's rich grand piano sound fast? Just press the Portable Grand button.
It's Also a Recording Device
In addition to the 30 included songs for you to play with or enjoy, the DGX230 also includes a sequencer with enough onboard memory to record 5 songs of your choice with up to six tracks of overdubs! It's not uncommon for musicians new to the keyboard to discover an inner composer they never knew they had -- so it's definitely a good to have a dependable way to record your ideas while you play!
Happy At Home, Happy At The Park
The functionality of this instrument doesn't trade off one bit on its portability. You can either plug in a standard 12V DC 2A wall adapter, or power it on-the-go with six D sized batteries. And with its 76-key size, the DGX230 is Yamaha's most portable Portable Grand keyboard.
Really A Perfect Instrument For the Beginner
All musicians learn differently, but the included Yamaha Education Suite software is a great way for beginners to study at their own pace. The Y.E.S. steps you through songs on the DGX230's big, bright LCD screen, displaying notes and chords to help you learn.
- 76 full size piano style keys
- 489 AWM sounds (including Sweet! & Cool! Voices)
- Graded Soft Touch (GST) touch sensitive keyboards
- 160 Backing Styles
- 300 song Music Database + download facility
- Yamaha Education Suite v.5 (learn to play the built in songs + 70 more in CDROM)
- Range of Reverb, Chorus & EQ effects
- Harmony/Echo effects (26 types)
- Pitch Bend Wheel
- Large backlit LCD display
- USB to Host socket
- 6 track 5 song recorder
- 6W+6W stereo speaker system
- Includes CDROM with extra songs, backing style data and internet software
- Power Adaptor (optional): PA150
Weight, Dimensions, and Manufacturer Part Numbers
Shipping Weight: 29 lbs
Shipping Dimensions: 51 x 22 x 10 in
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): YAC DGX230
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