Yamaha Montage 8 Flagship 88-Key Workstation Synthesizer


Yamaha Corporation has been breaking boundaries in music technology since it was founded in Japan more than a century ago. Though it originated as a piano and organ maker, in 1887, the company has since branched out into many avenues of manufacturing, developing products as diverse as motorcycles, sporting goods, and industrial robots, to name a few. However, despite its expansion into other markets, Yamaha has always kept its eye on the musical prize, consistently delivering innovative products such as the groundbreaking DX series FM synthesizers, and highly influential Motif workstation keyboards. 

Building on the legacy of these two iconic keyboards, Yamaha has just announced its new flagship workstation synthesizer at the 2016 NAMM show: the Montage. Combining elements of the DX and the Motif, the Montage employs the powerful Motion Control Synthesis Engine, which comprises two sound engines in one: the AWM2 (synthesis and sample based sounds) and FM‐X (Frequency Modulation synthesis.)

Powered by proprietary Yamaha technology for data compression and playback, the AWM2 engine provides realistic sound reproduction and features nearly 10 times the waveform capacity of the Motif XF. This means that the Montage allows for far more samples per instrument than the XF, and thus a far more nuanced sound. The FM‐X engine is capable of producing everything from classic ’80s FM-based basses and bells, to harsh, cutting-edge modern EDM type sounds. It features 8‐operator FM architecture and 128‐note polyphony, allowing for a massive array of sound-design options.

Like the Motif, the Montage features 16-part multi-timbral operation, but it comes with a full range of all-new sounds, like the Yamaha CFX Premium Grand Piano, detailed new strings and woodwinds, and select content from the DX and TX family, all modernized to take advantage of the Motion Control Synthesis Engine. Also, Montage is directly compatible with Motif ES/XS/XF Voices, allowing you to transfer your favorite presets and get all of your sounds together in one place.

The Montage comes in three 61-, 76-, and 88-key configurations. The Montage 6and Montage 7 feature premium FSX semi‐weighted synthesizer action with aftertouch, while the Montage 8 features fully weighted keys with balanced hammer action and aftertouch. Other notable features include a large color touch screen, a “Super Knob” control that can control multiple parameters simultaneously, dual insert FX for all 16 parts, powerful pattern sequencer, and an arpeggiator that allows up to 8 arpeggio parts at once.