Yamaha has been around since 1897 as a producer of pianos and reed organs. So, it is no surprise that they are one of the biggest names in the instrument world.
In this article, we will be looking at two of their products from their Contemporary Digital Piano line and comparing against to one another. The focus of our “piano battle royale” will be seeing how the Yamaha P255 stacks up against the Yamaha DGX-660.
The fighting ring has been set—let the battle begin!
And to help with this comparison, please take a moment to use our interactive guide below to directly compare the Yamaha P255 and Yamaha DGX-660 other popular and noteworthy digital pianos on today’s market:
|Casio PX-S1100||192-note polyphony; 18 built-in tones|
|Casio CDP-S360||128 Notes of Polyphony|
|Yamaha P-45||64 Note Polyphony|
|Yamaha NP12||Uses Six AA Batteries|
|Yamaha P-515||40 Voices, 18 Drum/FX Kits, 480 XG Voices|
|Yamaha NP32||Graded Soft Touch (GST) Keyboard|
|Korg LP-380 U||Now features USB Audio/MIDI|
|Yamaha DGX 670||601 Voices, 29 Drums, SFX Kits|
Round 1: Aesthetics
My first impression of the Yamaha P255 was that it seemed somewhat bulky, and yet oddly appeared clean and even somewhat elegant. At first glance, it may seem like a heavy instrument, but it only weighs 38 pounds, which makes it very portable.
The piano comes in two colors, matte black or ivory white, both of which look excellent. So, if you are looking for a more elegant piece for the front room, and trying to avoid the maintenance of an upright or grand piano, this would be a good option.
The DGX-660 does not look quite as elegant (probably because the P255 as a more minimalistic look), but it is a portable ensemble digital piano. With that said, if you’re looking to move this bad boy around a lot, it should be noted that the DGX-660 weighs about 46 pounds, and once the keyboard stand comes into play, the weight expands to 61 pounds.
Both pianos feel great to the touch, but when you sit down in front of them, you can tell they were designed with different intentions. In this sense, I think the P255 takes the first round.
Let’s move onto some of the key features and see which one comes out in top in the next round.
And below, please take a quick moment to view some of the best-selling digital pianos currently on sale:
|1) Casio PX-560|
|2) Nord Piano 5|
|3) Roland RD-88|
|4) Korg D1|
|5) Roland RD-2000|
Round 2: Noteworthy Specs & Features
The most obvious thing that stands out between these two pianos is the size of the LED screen. The P255 has a a seven-segment screen that is backlit in the center of the interface, while the DGX-660 has a full dot LCD screen that is 320×240 dots. Though I won’t count it against the P255 that its screen is minimalist in nature, this particular addition is something that’s going to have to be judged on a person by person basis. If you deeply care about, need, or simply want a better quality LCD screen, the DGX-660 is something you’ll likely lean more towards.
The P255 is more of a stripped-down piano, focused more on mimicking the sound and feel of the “real thing.” Here are a few noteworthy specs for the P255:
- 88 ivory keytop keys
- Key touch: soft, medium, hard, fixed
- Stereo sustain samples, key-off samples, string resonance, damper resonance
- 256 maximum polyphony with 24 voices (Grand Piano: 4, E.Piano: 4, Organ: 4, CLV/VIB: 4, Others: 8)
- 4 types of reverb
- Chorus, phaser, rotary speaker, tremolo/auto pan
In comparison with the DGX-660, both pianos use the same sound engine. They both have 88 keys that can have their touch adjusted by the same number of intervals. Both have damper resonance, but the DGX-660 does not have the stereo sustain samples, key-off samples, and string resonance.
The DGX also only has 192 maximum polyphony. Yet, it has a lot more options when it comes to other things, such as 41 different kinds of reverb, 44 types of chorus, 237 types of DSP, and 5 types of Master EQ.
Another defining feature of the DGX-660 is its accompaniment options. The P255 doesn’t have much in this department while the DGX-660 has 205 different preset styles. It also has three fingering controls: multi finger, full keyboard, and AI fingered.
There are also style controls, which include: Intro, two main, 2 fill-in, and an ending. It has an onboard database of 320 songs with a one touch setting option, a style recommender, and smart chord reader.
With these defining features, the DGX lands a solid blow—breaking the nose of the P255.
Now, let’s get into how their song presets differ.
The P255 offers 24 voice demo songs, with 50 piano preset songs. The DGX has a solid 100 preset songs. As for recording, the P255 can record 10 songs with 2 tracks, while the DGX-660 can record 5 songs with 6 tracks. They both have similar compatibility formats, but the P255 has other functions such as Part Cancel, A-B Repeat, Start/Stop with pedal, Changin Voice & tempo after recording.
I would say the P255 is able to hold off the DGX-660, landing a well-placed blow to end the round in favor of the DGX-660.
- You can read our in-depth review of the Yamaha DGX-660 right here.
Round 3: The Sound Battle
Although they both operate with the same sound engine, there is a subtle difference between them. If you are just going for an authentic piano sound, the P255 feels and sounds slightly better than the DGX-660. This could be a difference in speakers, or perhaps user bias, but the P255 is clearly the winner as a natural piano.
To be fair, the P255 should sound better, as its a piano that costs over $1,000, while the DGX-660 can often be had for around $800.
The P255 has two 15 watt amplifiers, while the DGX-660 has only two 6 watt amplifiers. The DGX has two 12cm and 5cm speakers while the P255 has two 10cm and 2.5cm speakers. The P255 also has a sound boost option, which makes it louder for live performances.
In this sense, I believe the P255 is a clear winner.
However, the DGX-660 is overall more versatile. For example, the DGX-660 boasts a ton of voices—151 voices, plus 15 Drum/SFX Kits, plus 388 XGlite sounds.
By comparison, the P255 features just 24 voices ( Grand Piano: 4, E.Piano: 4, Organ: 4, CLV/VIB: 4, Others: 8).
At the end of the day, you need to decide what you are really looking for—something that is more of a pure piano, or an instrument like the DGX-660 that can kind of do a little bit of everything fairly well.
For this reason, I will give the reader the opportunity to judge this round since it really boils down to each individual. For me personally, I am leaning towards the P255, but I can see the DGX-660 winning as well due to its wide array of quality sounds.
Round 4: A Fistful of Connectivity
Although each one has the ability to connect with an iPad or an iPhone, the P255 stands apart, for it has an app specifically designed for it. The app is a controller for iOS and can be downloaded from the app store. This gives the user the ability to layer or even split and change other voices.
You can manage presets and control recording to USB with greater ease.
The DGX-660 also doesn’t have two connectivity options: a MIDI In/Out or an AUX Out—only and AUX In.
It is for this reason that I must give round 4 to the P255.
And the Winner Is…
Having narrowly won 3 out of the 4 rounds, the P255 has come out on top. But of course, this is a subjective opinion. Normally in a fight like this, there are a few judges. My vote would clearly be leaning towards the P255; however, I can just as well see the DGX-660 winning two rounds, making this a tie, and forcing either another round or a decision by the judges.
For the sake of argument, let’s say the DGX-660 did beat out the P255 in the sound department, making this fight a draw. In that case, let’s get into probably the most important thing for a consumer—price point.
As mentioned earlier, you can find a Yamaha P255 for about $1200 dollars depending on where you shop for it. The DGX-660 can cost just as much in certain places, but if you search it as I did online, the DGX-660 is actually around $800—which is a big difference.
So, let’s say you are looking for the best digital piano Yamaha price you can find online, the DGX-660 would clearly beat the P255 in this tie-breaking round.
However, if you just want to boil it down to look, feel, sound, and even include the iOS app as the icing on the cake, then the P255 would take the day.
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