The classic appeal of playing an acoustic piano can never be gratified with the conventional electronic keyboard. Lot of assumptions, loom around the mind of buyers as whether the keyboard produces any sound at all! Selecting a standard keyboard from the market is crucial, as one must come in terms with the application part of the instrument. It is unwise to purchase a higher end keyboard for beginners and vice versa. Even if the decision is made, yet another hurdle is budget feasibility. Being one of the leading manufacturers, Yamaha specialises in making products that cater to a particular market segment. Yamaha never delude the buyers with too many options in the electronic keyboard making it midway for professional and amateurs. Yamaha’s top notch business strategy is making versatile keyboards even for beginners. Yamaha PSR-E323 is one such item.
Yamaha PSR-E323 body design is rectangular in shape with a subtle silver coating. Compared to the Yamaha PSR 233 model, the size is intact and the weight is reduced from 4.9 Kg (10lbs., 13 oz) to 4.5 Kg (9lbs., 11oz.), by truly making it portable and compact keyboard. The buttons are white and black and made up of tactile rubber. In previous cases, many of the rounded buttons were poorly designed; the same is kept at a minimum in the PSR-E323 model. This PSR-E323 digital piano keyboard is the first to line up by introducing touch sensitive keyboard, comprising of 61 touch sensitive keys. The instrument is accompanied with a backlit LCD screen with good visibility from a reasonable distance. The rear part consists of pedal jacks and headphone jacks. Yamaha could do some improvement in the type of jack, as it still uses DIN type of jacks, whereas Casio uses the latest USB. The buttons and controls are slightly bigger and bolder accompanied by appropriate labeling, which was missing in the E313 model. Pitch of the note in the octave can be transferred either upward or downward in the main, dual and split modes. Playing in difficult key is facilitated by the transpose function. Every operation is notified on the display screen. The chord display notifies the name of the currently played chord, whereas the keyboard display indicates the note, melody and the chord notes.
Touch sensitive keyboard:
The highlight feature in PSR-E323 is the improvement in the keyboard type. From the regular keyboard, Yamaha has upgraded to the 61 regular-sized touch sensitive keys and 32-note polyphony. The touch response approximately creates an acoustic piano effect. In Acoustic keyboard, the sound difference is created by the variation in impact while striking the key. The higher the pressure applied, a louder noise is produced and vice versa. The touch sensitive keyboard tries to replicate the same functionality. It detects the pressure applied on each strike of the key. As a result the volume varies with the pressure, thereby creating the nearest acoustic effect. It is possible to change the tone or sound while playing. The sound produced is highly appreciated by music teachers and beginners. Considering the practice range for beginners, this is an extremely prominent feature that is patched up.
Yamaha PSRE 323 comes with 482 dynamic instrument voices such as 108 panel voices, 361 XGlite voices, and 12 Drum Kits and Sound Effect Kit. The PSR-E323 also has 106 accompaniment styles and 102 built-in songs. It also comprises of 212 drum beat style with two variations. The two way stereo sound can be varied with 4 extra levels of chorus, DSP level and 9 types of acoustic values. The music data base covers 100 songs and the special two track recording feature can save up to five of user’s original songs, which is a good supplement for practice session. When compared to old Yamaha PSR 340 which originally contained 5 tracks, is shrinked to two tracks in this model. For eager composers, updating the keyboard with software permits to use more than two recording voice. Using the split mode selection, different voice for each hand is possible. The Sustain pedal jack at the rear is worthy for practicing and playing piano pieces. The most distinct and surprising aspect, is the sound quality integrated in such a beginner keyboard. The user manual can be understood easily without any complication.
The Yamaha PSR-E323 keyboard with Portable Grand Function is made highly interactive by infusing an educational suite in it. The user can monitor and improve performance and make the practice a very sensible one. Learning session can be interesting with the preset songs. In the “Listen and learn,” feature, the keyboard guides the user to listen and play. With the “timing” feature, the user can test their skills. “Waiting” feature is judging the chords, songs, melodies and timings. The Yamaha E323 has further items like, “Phrase Repeat,” and “Keys to Success.” It allows the player to opt a phrase in any one of the 102 preset songs already available with the keyboard, and can practice till it is easy for the user. It becomes all the more advantageous, as score is displayed on the LCD screen. The user can play any one of the preset songs “step by step”. It provides good approach, for music teachers to tutor the students effectively. The YES Yamaha Suite is advanced learning tool constructed in the instrument. It teaches to play and even master a song with simple lessons. The lesson can be learnt separately or using both the hands.
Yamaha has brought its unique Portable Grand Button feature in the PSRE 323 model too. The keyboard transforms to produce spectacular and rich sound. The access functionality is simple with just a touch of the grand function button.
The E323 possess MIDI capability. In simple words, it is possible to transfer and download style files and MIDI songs between the computer and keyboard. The files are stored in the internal memory. This MIDI functionality gives a realistic effect, because the sound is recorded in a two dimensional format, so as to avoid the cross over of reverb and sustain. The accessibility is made simple with just a press of button connecting to the PC. The songs can be edited, played and mailed if necessary.
The XGLite, an excellent key derived from Yamaha. It brings out sounds with a natural feel and has an extensive collection of almost 500 voices. Compatibility with third party software is appreciable. Sometimes, the voices in XGlite often felt as repetition of the standard voices. This could be avoided in the future models and can try recording innovative sounds.
Yamaha has tried the maximum to trigger out best sounds from almost all of their keyboards. This one is no exception. The sound quality is good and with the effect of the touch sensitive keyboard, the user gets a good feel and control to produce the desirable effect.
It is a good return on investment when the speaker quality is measured. Yet, at some instances, the volume output must be high so as to render a good listening, but the 2.5 watts per speaker is not efficient enough to pull the desired output. Connecting an amplifier through the amp/auxiliary socket solves the issue.
The Yamaha PSR-E323 MIDI Keyboard consist of reverb effect. The Reverb effect mimics the sound in different environments such as a small room, concert hall or stadium. It fills the sound, by providing more “body” to it. Another distinct sound effect is the chorus effect that gives a richness and warmth to the voice. The user has good options of chorus type to be selected. Miscellaneous effects such as sound of barking dog, running water, and a creaking door add fun to the players especially if they are children.
Yamaha E323 uses AA batteries and the battery life is almost 30 days and varies with usage. The keyboard also supports optional power adapter.
The Yamaha offers a limited warranty period of 1 year for PSR-E323 Portable Keyboard.
To paraphrase, the Yamaha PSRE 323 keyboard is excellent for beginners in the early teens and below that age. Especially, the highlight is the touch sensitive keyboard. Considering the age limit of the users, it is highly appreciated. The initial music learning experience must be a pleasant one and, the transition from using this basic keyboard to acoustic keyboard would be effortless for ambitious keyboardist. Yamaha focus on avoiding frustrations with the users, and hence has kept all the complications of an electronic instrument at bay. The concentration is fully tuned to deliver rich learning, listening and playing experience. All together, the features are evenly balanced and one might be surprised at the quality it performs at such a reasonable and affordable cost.
Yamaha PSR-E323 Digital Piano Keyboard – Technical Specification Table
|Model Name||Yamaha PSR-E323|
|Dimensions (H x W x D)||132mm x 945mm x 369mm|
|Number of keys||61|
|Key Touch Sensitivity||Yes|
|Tone Generating Technology||AWM Stereo Sampling|
|Number of Polyphony||32|
|Number of Voices||108 + 361 XGlite + 13 Drum/SFX/SE Kits|
|Reverb types||9 types|
|Chorus types||4 types|
|Functions supported||Dual/Layers, Split and Panel Sustain|
|Number of Preset Styles||106|
|Fingering Intro||Multi / Full Keyboard|
|Style Control||Main x 2, Filling-in, Ending|
|Number of Preset Songs||102|
|Data Capacity||Approx. 10,000 notes|
|Connectivity||DC IN DC IN 12V
Headphones x 1
Sustain Pedal x 1
USB port x 1
|Accessories||AC Power Adapter