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Yamaha Keyboard Styles

Style History

This is a collection of Yamaha keyboard styles introduced over the last 20 years, organized by genre or style category. First, let's explain a bit about these keyboard styles.

Every Yamaha Arranger Keyboard comes with preset styles, that is, styles built into the hardware of the keyboard. Over the years, the number of styles included with each new keyboard has grown. In 2001, there were 181 styles included with the mid-range PSR-2000. Two years later, the PSR-2100 was introduced with 203 styles. The next year, 2004, the PSR-3000 came out with 240 styles. This trend continued as new models were released and today's mid-line PSR-SX900 includes 525 preset styles. The top-of-the-line arranger keyboards always included more styles than the mid-range models and each new model offered more styles than the previous. The Tyros1 (2002) had 300 styles. Today's Genos model includes 550 styles.

As the number of styles included on a keyboard increased, new styles were introduced. Earlier styles were carried forward, although modified somewhat to incorporate features of the new keyboard. Some styles have proved very durable and have appeared on every new model over the last two decades. For example, you will find styles such as Beguine, PianoBallad, CountryPop, and ChristmasWaltz available on all the keyboards in this collection.

But not all styles were carried forward. As new styles were introduced, some old styles disappeared. For example, CoolFunk and BluesPiano were available on the 9000Pro and the PSR-2000, but were not included on any subsequent keyboards. Fortunately, Yamaha styles from earlier keyboards are playable on newer models. So, no matter what Yamaha keyboard you have, you are able to load and play that CoolFunk or BluesPiano style.

The PSR-2000 styles were based on Yamaha's 480 XG and GM voices available on all the keyboards. So styles using these voices are playable on all the keyboards. As new keyboards were introduced, new features were added like the "Mega" voices introduced with the the Tyros 1. The PSR-2000 could not play Tyros styles that included the new mega voices, but the PSR-3000 and later keyboards, which included those voices, could play these styles.

With the introduction of the Tyros3, Yamaha introduced a new Style File Format (SFF2). This new format appeared on the mid-range S910/S710 and continues through to the current SX900/SX700/SX600 models. It is also used on the Tyros4, Tyros5, and Genos flagship models. All the previous keyboards used an earlier style file, often labeled SFF1. The newer keyboards (those purchased in the last 10 or 11 years) can play both SFF1 and SFF2 styles. Older keyboards can not directly play the newer SFF2-based styles.

As each new keyboard was introduced, new voices were introduced. The One Touch Settings (OTS) of the newer keyboards were sometimes updated to use the newer voices. So, if you are loading a style from a newer keyboard than yours, you may have to revise the OTS if it is calling for a voice you do not have. You can simply edit the OTS to reflect voices that are included in your keyboard.

Finally, with the S950 and the Tyros5, new "audio" styles were introduced. These styles use an audio track with actual drum percussion patters that can only be played on that keyboard. These audio styles are not available in this collection.

The 2014 release of the PSR Tutorial Styles #8 collection included the preset styles from 20 different Yamaha keyboards, those released between 2001 and 2013. There were 6,760 styles in that collection. In the last 6 or so years, Yamaha has released many new models. For this collection, nine of these new keyboards (Genos, CVP-709/CVP-809, PSR-S970/S670, PSR-S975, PSR-SX900/SX700/SX600) have been combined with the earlier 20 keyboards. These new keyboards added almost 4,200 styles to the earlier collection of preset styles.

The table below shows all the keyboards included in this collection sorted by release year. It also shows a 2-letteer abbreviation for each model and the total styles from that model. The 2,861 styles from keyboards released before 2008 use SFF1. Styles from the subsequent keyboards use SFF2. In total, there are nearly 11,000 styles in this collection

Styles, by Keyboard
Keyboard Abb Year Total
SFF1
9000Pro 9P 2001 298
PSR-2000* 2k 2001 209
Tyros1 T1 2002 300
PSR-2100 21 2003 203
PSR-1500 15 2004 190
PSR-3000 3k 2004 240
CVP-307 C3 2004 308
Tyros2 T2 2005 400
PSR-S900 S9 2007 305
CVP-409 C4 2007 408
SFF2
Tyros3 T3 2008 450
PSR-S710 71 2009 232
PSR-S910 91 2009 322
CVP-509 C5 2009 442
Tyros4 T4 2010 500
PSR-S650 65 2012 180
PSR-S750 75 2012 325
PSR-S950** 95 2012 383
CVP-609 C6 2012 566
Tyros5** T5 2013 499
PSRS670 67 2015 230
PSR-S970 97 2015 410
CVP-709 C7 2017 570
Genos G1 2017 550
PSR-S975 98 2018 483
CVP-809 C8 2019 675
PSR-SX900 X9 2019 525
PSR-SX700 X7 2019 400
PSR-SX600 X6 2020 351
Grand Total    

10954

* Includes styles from Floppy disk.
** Excludes audio styles.

Styles by Category

While these styles are integral parts of specific keyboards, this collection rearranges all these Yamaha styles by style category or genre. On the individual keyboards, styles are organized by style category, such as Dance or Pop&Rock or Swing&Jazz. These style categories were not always the same and individual styles were sometimes moved to different categories.

Keyboard Codes

Since styles in this collection are organized by category rather than by keyboard, how do you know what keyboard they originated from? In the table, there is a 2-letter abbreviation shown for each model in this collection. The Tyros5 is abbreviated by "T5"; the PSR-SX900 by "X9"; the CVP-409 by "C4". Every style filename has been modified to include this 2-letter keyboard code preceded by a dash (-T5 or -X9 or -C4). Thus, you can tell at a glance what model any particular style file came from.

Top-Level Categories

For this style organization, I used 19 top-level categories in a "Genre" folder: Ballad, Ballroom, Country, ... Swing&Jazz, World. I started trying to keep the top-level to only 10 categories, but that led to too many subfolders within subfolders. So I bounced several major categories up to the top level.

3/4 Styles

I put all of the 3/4 time signature styles into two folders: 3-4 (Waltz) and 3-4 (Other). The first has every 3/4 style with "Waltz" in the name. The second has other 3/4 styles such as AcousticBallad, Amazing Gospel, Flamenco, OrchestralBolero. Normally, you can not identify a 3/4 style simply by looking at the name. This now makes it much easier to find them.

Time Period Styles

I created a main folder called "Decade" that has 5 subfolders: _1960s, _1970s, _1980s, _1990s, and -2000s. Many styles include one of these decades in the style name. For example, 60sGuitarPop, 70sChartSoul, 80sClassicRock, and 90sCool Ballad. There are over 1,000 styles in this "Decade" folder. Generally, they would have been listed under Pop&Rock. Because there are so many, I created a unique folder for them. Those that might have been listed under a different main category, like 70sChartSoul under R&B>_Soul, are still listed under that main category, but also duplicated in the Decade>_1970s folder.

Subfolders

Within each "main" folder are subfolders, and sometimes more subfolders, leading to individual styles. Let me illustrate with the Latin folder.

Style Subfolders

The main "Latin" folder includes all the Latin styles. If a style with a certain default tempo appeared in two or more keyboards, it is stored in a folder labeled with the style name and tempo. For example, "Beguine 113" is a folder holding 29 different versions of this style, one from every keyboard included in the collection. There are no duplicates; every one of them is slightly different. The "LatinPop 91" folder contains only two versions of this style, one from the Genos and one from the CVP-809.

Style Group Subfolders

In cases where there were multiple versions of a style genre, a subfolder is used to hold the multiple versions. For example, there were 12 style names that include "Bossa" in the style name. These are all stored in a Latin subfolder called "_Bossa"' I put the underscore at the beginning of the style group name to place these subfolders at the top of the list of Latin folder contents. The 12 variations of "Bossa" are all in this folder. For example, "BossaBrazil 122" holds the BossaBrazil style, at a tempo of 122, which was included in 7 different keyboads (T4, T5, G1, X9, C6, C7, C8). "BossaRio 126" holds two styles (from G1 and C8).

The BossaNova style appears with three different default tempos, which thus created three versions of the BossaNova style. Each one was included in the "_Bossa" subfolder:

As it turns out, every keyboard in this collection had a style called "BossaNova", but not a single one was an exact duplicate of another. On every keyboard, the style was slightly different, even when the defaut tempo was the same. That is true of all the 11,000 styles in this collection. There are no exact duplicates.

Individual Unique Styles

Finally, at the bottom of the Latin listing, after all the style folders, are individual styles that appeared in only one of the keyboards in this collection. For all of these individual styles, I have included the default tempo in the filename as well as the keyboard code. For example, the filename 2019LatinPop 120-X6.T547.prs indicates the 2019LatinPop style, at a default tempo of 120, that was released on the PSR-SX600.

Style SubCategories

Subcategory folders were created to group together a set of related styles, like the "_Bossa" subcategory discussed above. Under "R&B" are 9 separate subcategories: "_Ballad", "_Blues", "_Boogie", "_Funk", "_Gospel", "_R&B", "_Rock&Roll", "_Soul", and "_Worship". All of the 1,151 R&B styles will be style subfolders in one of these subcategories.

For some of the standard Yamaha style categories, like "Movie&Show", instead of creating subcategories, one for Movie and one for Show, I decided to simply move both up to the top level. I did my best to figure out which of these files the individual style folders best fit in.

For two categories (Country and Swing&Jazz), I created a "_Fast" subfolder to break out styles with a default tempo of 170 or higher. Sometimes there is also a "_Ballad" subfolder to break out the slower styles.

Your Own Organization

You can, of course, view this whole collection on your computer under the parent folder, I labeled "Genre". Using File Explorer on your Windows computer, it is a simple matter to modify this organization to reflect your own preferences.

For example, there are main folders called "Pianist" and "Organ" were initially under the "Entertainment" category. If you do not use these types of styles frequently, you may prefer that they simply be subcategories under Entertainer. It is a simple matter to drag Pianist and/or Organ folders into the "Entertainer" folder. You would want to add an underscore at the beginning of the folder name to indicate that each contained a whole collection of similar stlyes. Similarly, "_Chirstmas" is listed as a subcategory under "World". If you want to move that into a different category or move it up to be with the top categories, just drag that "Christmas" folder, with all the Christmas styles, somewhere else.

Style Duplicates

There are 11,570 styles in this collection. That is 616 more styles than in all these keyboards. That is because I wound up copying some styles that logically fit in two places and storing them in both places. For example, many of the genre categories include piano styles. They are listed where appropriate, but I ALSO put a copy under the Pianist category.

The World category has a folder for "_Polka" and there are a lot of polkas styles there. But there is also a "PartyPolka" and "PolkaPop" under Entertainer and a SchlagerPolka under Schlager. You could MOVE these 3 Polka style folders to the main Polka folder under World or you could COPY them to that folder and they would appear in both places.

PSR Style Database

I found Peter Wierzba's PSR Style Database essential in pulling all this information together and organizing and cataloging these 10,000 styles. You can use this program to read all the style folders. You can then sort the results in different ways. You can use the Filter/Search option to find specific subsets. There are many useful data manipulation options available in this program. You can learn more about this program from Peter's page in the PSR Tutorial Utility section.

Joe Waters
22 July 2021

This page updated on July 22, 2021.

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