Yamaha Smart Pianist App review for P-125
If you haven’t seen it already, Yamaha have released a really exciting, new app called ‘Smart Pianist’ (careful how you say it!) which is compatible with a variety of their current and upcoming range of keyboards and digital pianos.
Chris Hammond and I went to Yamaha recently and we had a chance to have a real, in-depth exploration of the features on the app and how it works alongside the brilliant P-125. If you’re looking for some more details on the Yamaha P-125, check out the blog post here: https://www.epianos.co.uk/the-new-yamaha-p-125-reviewed/
The app is FREE and available on all iOs devices. Unfortunately, it is not yet available on android but we anticipate Yamaha may release this in the future, so keep an eye out! We’ll be sure to keep the blog updated with any news.
What does the app do?
First and foremost, the Smart Pianist app for the P-125 works as a controller. Using a clear, simple layout, you can browse through the voices (24 altogether); Layer sounds (piano and strings is always a winner); Split the keyboard and navigate through all the settings with a few clicks. It’s super simple to use and makes the whole functionality of the keyboard much easier to understand.
Now, once you’ve found yourself a nice voice -after layering, splitting, browsing and tweaking until your hearts content- you will most probably want to save it! This is another great feature – the app allows you to save your favourite settings on the app so you can click back to these whenever you like. This is great for gigging musicians as it rids you of the frantic search mid-set and all round makes using the keyboard much more user friendly.
This next feature is definitely my favourite and something I use at home all the time. Some of you may (or may not) be familiar with Yamaha’s other app called ‘Chord Tracker’ which has essentially been embedded into Smart Pianist and redesigned to be even better. It’s awesome! It takes all the songs you have downloaded on your smart device, analyses them and gives you the chords to follow along. It will playback the song you select through the instruments’ speakers and you can even alter parameters like tempo and transposition.
How awesome is that? This feature really makes the app worthwhile in my opinion; You can now play along with your favourite artists and it doesn’t even take a minute to do. It’s worth noting that it doesn’t work, however, with streamed music (i.e Spotify, Apple Music) so to use the feature ensure the music is downloaded to the device itself. #
Lastly, we have the recording feature. For all you avid composers, songwriters and future pop stars out there, recording your stuff is vital to improve your sound and start getting your work heard. For beginners too, listening back to pieces is really important – sometimes you miss things while you’re playing that you’ll be sure to pick up if you could only hear it played back to yourself.
The Smart Pianist App allows you to record a piece (whether it be a couple of chords or a full blown song) and it will save on the app for you to listen back to when you like. It even goes a step further – You can export this recording as a midi or wav file and it’ll go straight to a Dropbox account (these are free to set up and make the recording easily accessible on any device).
Midi is great if you’re planning on putting your recording into music software (like Sibelius, Logic, Garage Band, Ableton etc) as the midi file is editable and purely information. This makes the recording flexible to change in the session on your music software – proving to be extremely useful if you hit a wrong note or play out of time.
However, if the recording is absolutely perfect, wav is the way forward. This will playback on any device as you hear it on your keyboard (record-producer ready!)
So, what are you waiting for? Get yourself playing! It’s a fantastic app and I would definitely recommend.
I have made an in-depth video about it on our youtube channel. You can check that out below:
Happy playing! Bye for now.
The app has essentially 4 main features: Controller (control voices, layering, split via app; Save your favourite settings all on the app using registrations; Music Library feature – chord tracker; Record pieces and export as Audio or MIDI.