Yamaha is one of the most popular and affordable brands of musical instruments, making it popular with beginners and professionals alike.
They are known for their excellent performance given their relatively low price, and their sleek and elegant design.
One of their newest models, the Yamaha P71 is an Amazon-exclusive model, as the most affordable version of Yamaha’s portable keyboard lineup.
Here we have made an in-depth review of the P71, to give you all the information you need on this model. We will cover everything from the design, specs, performance, sound quality, and much more. Read on to find out if this is the right keyboard for you.
OUR TOP PICK
Here is a quick list of the specs on the P71.
- Keys: Fully weighted 88-keys
- Touch Sensitivity: Soft/Medium/Hard/Fixed
- Weight: 25lbs or 11.5 Kgs
- Dimensions: 58.2 x 16.1 x 11.7 inches
- Preset Voice: 10
- Piano Tone: AMW Stereo Sampling
- Ports: DC IN, Headphone Jack, Sustain Pedal, USB to Host
- Tempo Range: 32 - 280
- Tuning: 414.8 - 440.0 - 446.8 Hz
- Polyphony: 64
Pros And Cons
- Fully weighted keys - this is ideal for beginners as learning on this type of key means that they can easily transfer the skills to traditional keyboards or pianos
- Affordable buy high quality - Yamaha does not cut corners on this piano, you can expect the same quality as portable keyboards with a higher price tag
- Compact and lightweight - one of the best portable keyboards out there due to its small and lightweight design, making it easy to transport and store
- No LDC display - unlike most portable keyboards, this one does not feature an LCD display
- Headphone jack in annoying place - The headphone jack is loaded at the back of the piano, making it quite difficult to access, especially if this keyboard is against a wall.
The Yamaha P71 is an 88-key portable keyboard with graded hammer standard action (GHS) and fully weighted keys.
The 88-key weighted action keyboard makes this instrument feel similar to that of a traditional piano or keyboard. Beginners may find it a bit challenging to play on this type of keyboard at first, as the weighted keys can feel like a workout for your hands.
However, using the fully weighted keys regularly will strengthen the fingers and your hands will begin to feel less tired when you play.
Consistent practice on the semi-weighted keys will help you acquire the best piano methods, and will let you transfer these skills to other key-based instruments like pianos.
The graded hammer standard action of the Yamaha P71 digital piano uses a tiny hammer to form the 88-key weighted action keys.
This is how traditional acoustic pianos work as well, meaning that it will be easy for you to transfer your skills from this instrument to another.
The P71 keyboard is touch-sensitive. The amount of sensitivity in the keys can be adjusted to suit your needs or skill levels, with the four settings being Soft, Medium, Hard, and Fixed.
The Medium setting is the one that is closest to the authentic and traditional piano feel and sound. On a regular keyboard or piano, how hard you strike the key will impact the tone of the note and how loud it is. With the Medium setting, you get this same effect.
For the fixed setting, how hard you press the key will have no impact on the tone or noise, which may be more useful for beginners who are first trying to learn all of the notes.
While GHS weighted keys respond very similarly to that of a regular piano, doing so much better than other portable keyboards of a similar price, it does not feel that great when playing.
The keys themselves can get glossy or greasy very quickly when you play, despite them having a matt finish. This comes from the natural oils or sweat from your hands and can make it a bit difficult for your finder to get a proper grip.
But wiping the keyboard down now and then should solve this problem.
The Yamaha P71 comes with 10 instrument sounds built into the keyboard. These are:
- 2 Electric Pianos
- 2 Pipe Organs
- 2 Harpsichords
- 2 Grand Pianos (concert and bright)
With tones painstakingly combined from numerous Yamaha acoustic grand pianos to capture and imitate the most genuine and natural sounds, the instrument's voice has an authentic and amazing sound quality.
Another aspect that adds to the overall quality of the sounds is the use of Yamaha’s own AWM sound engine. Designed specifically for their products, this sound engine is not found in any other portable keyboard.
This means that the engine is perfectly integrated into this keyboard, and creates crisp and accurate notes whenever a key is struck.
When you select one of the voices, the appropriate Reverb type is automatically selected, but you can change it by holding down the "Grand piano/Function" button and selecting one of the reverb control keys.
Room, Hall 1, Hall 2, and Stage are the three reverb types available for this instrument.
The sound quality would be nothing without a good set of speakers to hear it on. Two built-in 12cm speakers, each with a 6W amp, are located on the bottom of this keyboard and are powerful enough for home practice or outdoor performances.
The 14-inch output can also be connected to an external speaker or headphones for a crisper, more detailed output.
For a live performance or solo concert, this piano's audio out connector can be utilized to connect it to a PA system, an external speaker, or an amplifier.
The Yamaha has two built-in modes, Duo and Duel.
By using duo mode, two players can play the P71 at the same time over the same octave range.
For this to work, the keyboard is essentially split in half, with one player controlling the left half of the keys, and another controlling the right half. A split point separates the two so that a player does not go over their half of the keys
This mode allows the player to select two of the 10 available instrument sounds and play them at the same time. For example, if you select stings and organs, then the left side would control the strings, and the right side would control the organ sounds.
If you want the tone to be louder and more prominent on one over the other, then you can adjust the balance between them to give different volume levels.
A beginner who is using this keyboard to learn the skill of playing a keyboard may not have much use for these features, but they do allow for more creativity when playing, especially with the dual mode setting.
The ability for two people to be able to play the same portable keyboard is a very rare feature of these instruments, so while the player may hardly use it it’s nice that they have the option.
The P71 has a built-in metronome feature that will be very useful for beginners and pros alike. Used to help players keep time, the tempo and the volume of the metronome can be adjusted to suit any piece you are playing or practicing.
Recording And Playback
You can use the recording function to record your playing sessions and then play them back to evaluate your skill level.
Using the playback function, you may listen to the demo songs for each of the instrument voices. There are Preset tracks available in addition to the Demo songs for you to listen to if you want.
While using the playback feature, other songs will play in order, starting with the selected one, and can only be stopped by pushing the "Grand piano/Function" button.
Design And Build
Usually, the cheaper a product the more flimsy and unreliable it will be, but this is not the case with the Yamaha P71.
For an entry-level keyboard, the build is surprisingly strong and durable, surviving a few bumps and knocks before you see any viable damage.
Available in either black or white, this elegant and slim keyboard is perfect if you don’t have a lot of space to store a large instrument in your home.
With dimensions of 58.2 x 16.1 x 11.7 inches and weighing just 25lbs, this is a super lightweight and compact keyboard.
The design of the P71 makes this a very portable keyboard, perfect for traveling to and from concert halls, keyboard practice sessions, or around your home.
The P71 has three forms of connectivity built into it.
When you buy this keyboard you get a footswitch included in the bundle. This is connected to the P71 via the sustain pedal jack.
This works in the same way as the sustain pedal on an acoustic piano, allowing beginners to build up this skill without needing to splash out hundreds of dollars on a bigger piano.
If you want to play this keyboard without disturbing others, then you can use the headphone jack to listen to the music instead.
You can use any headphones that have a ¼” stereo plug. Once these are plugged into the keyboard, the built-in speakers turn off automatically
USB To Host port
The USB port is very useful as it allows you to connect the P71 to a computer or laptop to transfer recorded samples or MIDI data from your keyboard to these devices.
If you want to boost the functionality of the keyboard then you can connect IOS devices to P71 by using a USB MIDI interface (i-UXI). This will allow you access a whole new range of applications.
When buying the P71 keyboard from Amazon, you will be able to select which bundle you want it to come with. The bigger the bundle the more accessories you will get. The most basic bundle will get you:
- The keyboard
- AC power adapter
- Sheet holder
- Sustain pedal/footswitch
- Owners manual
- 3 year limited warranty
While all of these features mean that you can begin to play the P71 as soon as you get it, players may not realize that most of the bundles do not include a stand and that this needs to be bought separately.
This can be quite annoying to the customer as it means more money needs to spent, including extra shipping fees. If you don’t want to be playing this keyboard on the floor though then this is a necessary purchase.
Is The Yamaha P71 A Worthwhile purchase?
While there are a few annoying downsides to the P71 such as the lack of an included stand and the strange feel of the keys, this is overall a very good portable keyboard, especially for such a cheap price.
Despite its low cost, this piano does not cut any corners when it comes it its build or durability, and its fully weighted keys give the player an authentic piano playing experience.
While it does not come with a stand, the bundle does come with other accessories that you would usually have to pay extra for, like the pedal or sheet holder.
So long as you’re prepared with the keyboard stand, these included accessories mean that you can begin to play as soon as this keyboard arrives.
The Yamaha P71 is an excellent beginner keyboard for people to build up their skills on, but it will also be appreciated by the more skilled piano players who may like that is small enough to play at home without taking up too much floor space.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is The Difference Between P45 And P71?
The main difference is in the keys. The P71 uses weighted keys, however, they’re not the Yamaha's Graduated Hammer Action keys found on the P45. The P45 also comes with more accessories.
Do I Need 61 Or 88 keys?
For a beginner, starting out on 61 keys is fine, unless you are interested in playing classical piano, where you will need 88 keys. It might be best to learn on 88 keys anyways, as this means your skills will be transferable to other key-based instruments.
Why Are Weighted Keys Better?
Weighted keys allow a beginner pianist to get used to the playing style needed to play acoustic pianos or other key-based instruments. If you lean on unweighted keys then it can be difficult for you to learn a whole new playing style.