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Motif ES6 vs Motif XS6- very detailed comparison

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  • Motif ES6 vs Motif XS6- very detailed comparison

    I tried to post this thread today at Motifator.com, however I was unable to for some reason their forum submit is acting up. So many of the references are related to that forum. But I thought posting here might be informative as well to people thinking about buying a a Motif XS6.

    Okay, so yesterday I went to my local guitar center and tried the XS and ES. They were actually displayed side by side, which made it very easy to make this comparison. I spent 4 hours total with both units (it was my day off , and here is what I found (note all of this is my opinion and it is neither fact or the end all be all, I would love to hear other people

  • #2
    I have Motif ES6 and did try Motif XS in FRankfurt and conclude that I just get a Roland SonicCell than switch to Motif XS.
    <div class="signaturecontainer">Morten Jensen<br />
    <br />
    Access Virus TI keyboard<br />
    Korg Kronos 61(SOON)(Karo KMP,KVA,KTC1,KTC2,KMC,KDC and KGA and KPB MOOG TAURUS)<br />
    Roland SH 01 GAIA with SonicCell with SRX 07<br />
    Yamaha TG 500</div>

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    • #3
      Teknobrat2003:

      Interesting review. Yamaha did improve the acoustic piano on the XS and it is capable of half pedaling, which the ES is not. They also upgraded to USB 2.0, which makes loading large samples a lot quicker than on the ES.

      Having owned an ES8 for over two years, the small green screen is inadequate considering the depth of this instrument. Too many abbreviations for things so they are large enough to display on the screen, which means you have to look them up in a separate manual from the owners manual.

      The owners manual isn't comprehensive. It's primarily a reference manual.

      Having said that, I don't know that Yamaha developed a completely new chip or series of chips to power the XS. So I don't know how much of an improvement in the overall sound you can expect.

      Yamaha put a lot more ARPS into the XS than the ES, and apparently they are very useful to songwriters and composers. I play live and sequence almost all my songss and have limited use for them. However, I HAVE used them for sequences, guitar chording parts, and voices I play live in songs that I don't sequence, so they do have value if you have a need for them.

      I think the larger color screen on the XS should be a plus, considering I think the green screen and the OS on the ES are inadequate. I looked at some of the screens on the XS, and it appears to be an improvement over the user interface on the ES, but I haven't played an XS yet, so I don't know how many screens you have to go through to get to where you want to go. I don't know if its worse than not being able to find what you want on the ES at all.

      I don't know who from Yamaha has been posting here these days or if its motifator.com you're speaking about, but when Mike Martin was handling their synths, we always got straight answers, he never over inflated their products from what I can remember, and he was always a gentleman. Too bad he's in another job slot with Yamaha now. Our loss.

      Mike T.
      <div class="signaturecontainer">Yamaha Motif ES8, Alesis Ion, Prophet 5 Rev 3.2, 1979 Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 73 Piano, Arp Odyssey Mk III, Digitech Vocalist Live Pro, lots of PA gear, Oberheim DMX, Roland R-70 Drum Machine, and more toys.</div>

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      • #4
        Interesting post, which coincides with my theory that Yamaha wants to maintain a close feature set between the XS and the ES so as not to make the previous model, which is still on many retailer's shelves, obsolete.
        <div class="signaturecontainer">&quot;A wise man knows the difference between opera and barbeque...&quot;</div>

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        • #5
          While I have a hard time believing the XS is inferior, I do think Yamaha overplay the innovation angle. There is *nothing* innovative about the XS, its merely another step in the Motif evolution... nothing wrong with that though.

          On another note I think at least one of the motifator boys really needs some lessons in etiquette and customer relations, because quite frankly when I visit that site and see his clever dick replies it just makes me not want to buy anything from Yamaha.. ego is not the word...

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          • #6
            Thanks for the thread. Very interesting. So far, I have seen no evidence that the XS is any better sonically than the Motif ES or S90-ES. Plus, the XS doesn't support plug-in cards, no breath controller input...

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            • #7
              What about that eight-way velocity switching?

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              • #8
                Two things that bothers me.

                1. Cubase, Cubase, Cubase. They seem to be pushing for tighter integration with Cubase which is fine if you use Cubase. I use Logic, Sonar and Live.

                2. No mention of PLG boards. Did they drop support for these? I would not want to give up my FM and VA cards.
                <div class="signaturecontainer"><font color="Red"><i>My friends have big houses and new cars. I own music equipment.</i></font></div>

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                • #9
                  Thanks for the thread. Very interesting. So far, I have seen no evidence that the XS is any better sonically than the Motif ES or S90-ES. Plus, the XS doesn't support plug-in cards, no breath controller input...


                  I need to hear it for myself, but I think it most likely IS an improvement. Just not the leaps and bounds Yamaha was making it out to be. I think it's a GOOD thing they ditched those stupid cards. They sucked! However I think not putting something NEW in there to replace it was a BIG mistake. Breath controller isn't something I've ever used, but does seem like a silly omission they made.

                  At least the controller abilities (Able to control more than 4 external synths) is finally with the 1990's.

                  I think a big deal is going to come down to how sampling and libraries work in the XS. A gig to work with is nice. If load times are speedy, could be pretty cool.

                  I'm glad the interface has changed too, I never really got on with my Motif that deep because of the old one. Just took too long to figure it out. I like to read the manual ONCE, and don't like spending hours on forums to get it right. By the time I do all that, whatever song WAS in my head is LONG gone. The workflow improvements is probably the XS's biggest asset.

                  It's ok. At this point I am totally CONVINCED that keyboard companies blatantly leave stuff out (the icing on the cake) so we're always wanting something more. I mean seriously, if they made a keyboard that would satisfy us for ten years, how would that serve them? That's why it'll never happen.
                  <div class="signaturecontainer"><b>Live Keys Rig:</b><br />
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                  <b>Guitar Rig:</b><br />
                  Fender Strats-Gibson Les Paul Classic-Ibanez 3220 TW (Quilt), Mesa Mark IV, RM4-RT2/50, Crate V3112, and a bunch of pedals/modules<br />
                  <b>Bass Rig:</b><br />
                  Mike Lull M5-Ashdown ABM 500 RC-Bergantino Cabs, A handful of pedals.</div>

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                  • #10
                    Technobrat2003,

                    Did you audition many of the performances that use multiple arpeggiator patterns?

                    While I wasn't sure how different the base sound would be, I thought all of the new arpeggiator patterns might provide people with additional song creation ideas.

                    My overall question would be what did you think of the arpeggiator of the XS versus the ES?



                    2. No mention of PLG boards. Did they drop support for these? I would not want to give up my FM and VA cards.

                    Yes, there are no PLG expansions with the Motif XS.

                    There are some people (like yourself) who really like the PLG boards, howevever Yamaha decided to not include them in the XS because:
                    -- they are older technology which did not fit very well within the new OS they created
                    -- PLG boards did not sell well

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                    • #11
                      Two things that bothers me.

                      1. Cubase, Cubase, Cubase. They seem to be pushing for tighter integration with Cubase which is fine if you use Cubase. I use Logic, Sonar and Live.

                      2. No mention of PLG boards. Did they drop support for these? I would not want to give up my FM and VA cards.



                      Well since Yamaha owns Steinberg the CuBase push is no surprise, though I agree with you - I'm a Sonar fan too.
                      <div class="signaturecontainer">&quot;A wise man knows the difference between opera and barbeque...&quot;</div>

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Quote by Orangefunk:

                        "On another note I think at least one of the motifator boys really needs some lessons in etiquette and customer relations, because quite frankly when I visit that site and see his clever dick replies it just makes me not want to buy anything from Yamaha.. ego is not the word..."

                        Agreed. SOME (not all) of the people that work for Yamaha are obnoxious. Knowledgeable? Sure. But Yamaha isn't the only show on the planet.


                        Mike T.
                        <div class="signaturecontainer">Yamaha Motif ES8, Alesis Ion, Prophet 5 Rev 3.2, 1979 Rhodes Mark 1 Suitcase 73 Piano, Arp Odyssey Mk III, Digitech Vocalist Live Pro, lots of PA gear, Oberheim DMX, Roland R-70 Drum Machine, and more toys.</div>

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Maybe the OT took it to heart and bought into all the hype. Whenever I see something released by the big 3, I'm immediately skeptical and on the prowl to dig up dirt. Just to be fair. And to be fair, I don't think Yamaha intended to 'replace' the other Motifs just like Korg or Roland don't tend to 'replace' the Fantom or Triton. Just offer different packages in those lines.

                          The screen looks to be a big improvement. But if it does lots of those 'Yes, No' commands popping up, that definitely could slow workflow. But I ALWAYS like bigger screens. And I think that having a lot of stuff on the screen at once is a good thing because it allows you to see multiple settings at one glance. I personally don't like clicking buttons to pull up more menus. So I agree with the bad pop ups, but still like the big screen (and it's color).

                          The main attraction for me is the USB port. Can the ES be used as a AU or VST? NO! The XS can. Big plus IMO.

                          Thanks for the review! That's was really cool to read. I love it when people make critical remarks about products because it really helps me to evaluate it for myself and see how it might or might not suit people.
                          <div class="signaturecontainer">____<br />
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                          <b><font size="1"> &quot;It’s got to reflect a personality, rather than a quantized performance. Despite the technological revolution that’s been going on over the past few years, it’s not like we’re sitting around saying, ‘Wow... much better records are being made.’” - Atticus Ross</font><br />
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                          • #14
                            You know, I don't have a problem with Yamaha blowing their own horn citing XS improvements on their forum. That at least tells me the areas they concentrated on. So far sound-wise I guess it's in solo orchestral instruments, acoustic guitars, a new piano, and vintage effects. Oh yeah... arpeggios.

                            Other than the piano I don't really care about any of those. I wanted to see an improved Leslie simulation that's at least close to what's in a Fantom and Extreme, and more variety in vocal and choral samples. And I know that's not there now. Yamaha reps haven't mentioned improvements in those areas. So they've done me a favor.

                            I'll still check anyway I guess when I get to GC. But it's way too expensive for a guy like me to buy unless it's a lot better in my kind of stuff than an ES.

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                            • #15
                              With all the hype and anticipation. I am some what disappointed to see all the negative feedback and comments. I really have to go see it for myself.

                              But probably we'll have to wait a bit longer for I am up in Canada.

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