For over 30 years the Yamaha Disklavier has refined the player piano experience. Perfecting streaming services on Disklavier TV & Radio, recording live performances with video and offering everyone from homes and hospitality, to artists and institutions, the most unique and unparalleled system available.
As a piano technician and owner of a Yamaha Piano Dealership, I can help you get the most from your Disklavier System. It's a lot more fun this way.
Yamaha Disklavier with tablet based controllers, Disklavier Radio & TV, and sound throughout the house
Upgrade your Mark IV hardware and replace your "Palm Pilot" style controller with your smartphone or tablet. This upgrade kit extends the life of your MKIV technology by 20+ years!
Short of locating a DKC850 on eBay, you'll need to wait to upgrade your MKII or MKIII. Please join our mailing list to hear the latest on upgrades.
Are you missing out on one of the best and most exclusive entertainment systems in the world? Connect your equipment to Yamaha's Radio & TV, and use your own Smart Devices to enjoy the most amazing entertainment value. Wireless hardware not included.
You can book an appointment online, and leave me a note. I'll call you so we can discuss your options before coming out to your home or business. Make sure you have the model number or some photos!
The fascination with automated musical instruments goes back to Ancient Greece, comes up again in the Middle Ages, and is in high gear in the 21st century.
Pictured at right is a Wheelock & Co. 10-piece Orchestrion which features flute pipes, percussion, a xylophone, and of course a player piano. Notice the electric motor down by the pedals, and the lack of pneumatic pedals to pump this beast to life. Who can blame them for adding this piece to early 20th century wizardry?
How much automation we can add to your current piano depends on its age and existing technology. Fortunately, in the case of Yamaha's Disklavier, we can reach deep into our bag of tricks, bringing even the oldest Disklaviers into the 21st century.
In 1987 Yamaha installed their proprietary digital player piano system into the world renowned U1 Upright piano, and introduced the MX100A to the world. This system not only played prerecorded music, but recorded your playing as well. While there was no audio component, it had a leg up on the cassette tape driven PianoCorder: hammer sensors. Tracking not only the key movement but also the hammer movement allowed the Yamaha to play and record more accurately that its competition.
Two years later Yamaha introduced the Disklavier Wagon Grand, so named because of the R2D2-sized power supply which accompanied the grand piano. Both instruments used a proprietary MIDI file format called E-SEQ, which is backwards-compatible with modern Yamaha Disklaviers. If you have one of these, you need to know that the Wagon or R2D2 unit must stay attached in order for the Disklavier to play, but we can try to hide it.
These older systems are "not upgradable," but that's not entirely true. I've upgraded these older systems with the DKC-850 to add CD functionality, and powered speakers to add accompaniment (the CD will need to have encoded audio). The included remote control is a nice touch, but I can take it a step further by connecting it to your home network or a stand alone router, allowing you to use your Smart Phone or Tablet to control the DKC-850.
Unfortunately, the DKC850 was discontinued in the 4th quarter of 2020. We're awaiting new upgrade options.
However, if you just want the player piano without the audio accompaniment, and you're a little tech-savvy, you can do that with a $55 bluetooth MIDI device from Yamaha. Yes, you can control it with your SmartPhone!
Would you like to discuss an upgrade? Do you have questions about your piano? Call, text, or hit me up in the chat window.
Heron’s self-playing organ pipes in Alexandria and in Araby, and the Musa brothers’ automatic flute-player from Bagdad are the oldest extent descriptions of automated instruments, and the oldest surviving mechanical musical instruments are the glockenspiels (carillons) of the late Middle Ages.
OK, maybe these are toys, but composers such as Händel, C.P.E. Bach, Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven wrote for small self-playing organs which were usually built into the cases of grandfather clocks called "flute clocks."
At the beginning of the 19th century, Johann Nepomuk Mälzel created an entire self-playing orchestra called the "Panharmonikon." Ludwig van Beethoven composed his Opus 91 "Wellingtons Sieg oder die Schlacht bei Vittoria“ op. for this instrument.
The first modern player pianos were developed in California in a joint venture with Sony and Marantz, and used a cassette tape. Click READ MORE below for link to my article Digital Player Pianos: A Brief History .