Yamaha YDP181 Review: Is The YDP181 Worth Buying?
Home > Yamaha YDP181 Review: Is The YDP181 Worth Buying?

Yamaha YDP181 Review: Is The YDP181 Worth Buying?

Another great piano in Yamaha’s popular Arius line, the YDP181 has a lot to offer to both beginning and experienced musicians.

Like all the other pianos in the Arius line, the YDP181 has earned its popularity in three ways: a rich acoustic sound, a realistic key action, and a highly attractive design. In this Yamaha YDP181 review, we’ll take a look at these three aspects, as well as the pros, cons, and other features and specifications of the instrument.

Yamaha YDP181

  • 88-key GH(Graded Hammer) weighted action keyboard
  • Dynamic Stereo Sampling AWM piano with 128-note polyphony
  • 2-track, 3-song recorder
  • USB TO DEVICE port
  • LED Display.Tempo Range:32-280

*last price update on 2022-02-26

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As mentioned, the YDP181’s sound, key action, and design are its primary advantages, but besides this, other pros of instrument include its excellent internal speakers, adjustable touch sensitivity, and its fourteen quality voices.


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One of the cons of the YDP181 is that the included bench is a little too narrow to be completely comfortable. Also, the pedals are initially too stiff and require a good amount of use to be fully broken in.

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You might also be interested in the top adjustable piano benches.

Sound Quality of the YDP181

Yamaha has added many great features and taken great approaches to producing the YDP181, giving it an excellent sound that must be heard to be fully appreciated. One of these approaches is their Advanced Wave Memory (AWM) dynamic stereo sampling, which replicates the subtle nuances of an acoustic sound by recording them using advanced digital filter technology. The result is a full, resonating sound that is surprisingly impressive.

Also adding to the YDP181’s sound quality is its damper resonance samples, which comprehensively copies the varying sounds an acoustic piano makes during pedaling and replicates them anytime the pedals on the YDP181 are used.

The YDP181 is capable of 128 notes of polyphony, giving it enough power to play most any piece without cutting off any notes prematurely.

yamaha ydp181 review

Key Action and Realism of the YDP181

Like all the other pianos in the Arius line, the YDP181 is outfitted with Yamaha’s acclaimed GH (Graded Hammer) key action, giving it the gradations in response and weight that you would have in an acoustic piano.

Along with this, one of the biggest advantages to the YDP181 is the fact that this touch sensitivity can be adjusted based on your preferences, playing style, and finger strength. By letting you choose between Hard, Medium, or Soft, the YDP181 takes an already realistic key action and allows you to customize it to the setting that works best for you, making it one of the most realistic and accommodating keyboards on the market today.

Other Features and Specifications of the YDP181

One nice feature of the YDP181 is its aesthetics. Its attractive and easy-to-use LED display, rosewood finish, and sleek, matte finished keys make it one of the most attractive pianos you are going to find in this price range.

Along with this, other features of the YDP181 include a 2-track, 3-song recorder, which allows you to record a song and then solo over it and also change tempos or voices even after the song has already been recorded, USB connectivity, a built-in metronome, 50 preset piano songs, Damper, Sostenuto, and soft pedals, 14 demo songs, 845Kb of internal memory, 14 voices, dual voice capability, and a headphone jack.


Yamaha YDP181 Review – Final Thoughts

With a great sound and an even better key action, the YDP181 is and will continue to be one of the most popular digital pianos on the market. Also, even though the bench could stand to be a little larger, the design of the YDP181 is still one of the most attractive digital pianos available. Combine all of this with a nice array of digital features and a reasonable price tag and the YDP181 becomes a great digital piano to consider.