Yamaha YDP-164 vs DGX-660: Why You Should Go for the DGX-660

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Finding a digital piano is hard, but with this Yamaha YDP-164 vs DGX-660 review, you’ll learn why the DGX-660 is better, making it much easier to choose the best option!

Whenever someone asks for help in buying a digital piano, I point them toward the Yamaha brand. Since Yamaha has been around for decades, the brand has grown into one of the most-trusted digital piano manufacturers on the market.

And two great examples of Yamaha’s exquisite craftsmanship and attention to detail are the YDP-164 and the DGX-660.

The YDP-164 is one of Yamaha’s best console digital pianos, while the DGX-660 is one of their best portable models. But which is the best pick between the two?

I had the pleasure of testing these two models myself, and when conducting this Yamaha YDP-164 vs DGX-660 comparison, I found that the DGX-660 is the far superior pick.

While the YDP-164 comes with a range of top-tier features that any pianist would enjoy, it simply couldn’t compete with the versatility and flexibility of the DGX-660. And in the rest of this article, I’ll explain the details of this comparison.

That way, you understand the benefits of either piano and which pianists they are made for. And by the end, you’ll easily be able to choose one that perfectly fits your needs and preferences!

Yamaha YDP-164 vs DGX-660: Comparison Chart

Image
The Winner (#1)
YAMAHA DGX660B 88-Key Weighted Digital Piano With Furniture Stand, Black
The Runner Up (#2)
Yamaha YDP164 Arius Series Piano with Bench, Dark Rosewood
Model
Yamaha DGX-660
Yamaha YDP-164
Product line
DGX
Arius
Product type
Portable Grand Piano
Console Digital Piano
Number of keys
88
88
Hammer action
GHS
GHS
Split mode
Hard, Medium, Soft, Fixed
Polyphony
192
192
Effects
Reverb, Chorus, DSP
4 x Reverb
Duo mode
Pedal
Number of voices
151 + 15 Drum/SFX Kits + 388 XGlite
10
Auto recording
Tone generation
Pure CF Sound Engine
CFX
What I like
Price
$999.99
$1,799.99
The Winner (#1)
Image
YAMAHA DGX660B 88-Key Weighted Digital Piano With Furniture Stand, Black
Model
Yamaha DGX-660
Product line
DGX
Product type
Portable Grand Piano
Number of keys
88
Hammer action
GHS
Split mode
Polyphony
192
Effects
Reverb, Chorus, DSP
Duo mode
Pedal
Number of voices
151 + 15 Drum/SFX Kits + 388 XGlite
Auto recording
Tone generation
Pure CF Sound Engine
What I like
Price
$999.99
More infor
The Runner Up (#2)
Image
Yamaha YDP164 Arius Series Piano with Bench, Dark Rosewood
Model
Yamaha YDP-164
Product line
Arius
Product type
Console Digital Piano
Number of keys
88
Hammer action
GHS
Split mode
Hard, Medium, Soft, Fixed
Polyphony
192
Effects
4 x Reverb
Duo mode
Pedal
Number of voices
10
Auto recording
Tone generation
CFX
What I like
Price
$1,799.99
More infor

Last update on 2023-02-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Yamaha YDP-164 vs DGX-660: A Head-to-Head Comparison

To make this comparison simple, I looked at three key qualities of these pianos – the tone, feel, and piano features. In my opinion, these are the characteristics that make a piano and the most important considerations when buying one yourself.

Based on these three comparison points, the Yamaha DGX-660 came out on top with a score of 3-2. This was a really close comparison, with each piano having its own set of benefits and advantages.

However, at the end of the day, the DGX-660 is the more flexible and versatile model, which is why it won the comparison.

Tone

The winner: Tie

YDP-164 can connect with the Smart Pianist of Yamaha
YDP-164 can connect with the Smart Pianist of Yamaha

These pianos run on different tone engines and have vastly different sound libraries. While the Yamaha YDP-164 had a slight advantage when it came to tone quality, the DGX-660 has a much more flexible and versatile sound library. And since each piano has its own perks regarding tone, I couldn’t pick a single winner and instead awarded a point to both models.

+Tone Generation

The Yamaha DGX-660’s tone engine is one of the brand’s best. This piano utilizes the PureCF Sound Engine, which contains high-quality samples recorded directly from Yamaha CF Grand Pianos. This is why the DGX-660 produces an incredibly realistic piano sound, replicating the brightness and clarity that define the brand’s CF Grand Pianos.

In my experience, there aren’t a lot of tone engines that can compete with the Pure CF Sound Engine. However, Yamaha recently released a more updated version of this tone generator known simply as CFX, which is what you can find on the YDP-164.

The CFX tone engine works similarly to the Pure CF Sound Engine. The samples on this engine also come from Yamaha CF grand pianos. However, the major difference is that Yamaha used more advanced technology to capture all the details of these pianos’ sounds.

This is why the YDP-164 sounds a bit more realistic than the DGX-660. Now, the difference isn’t large at all. In fact, these pianos almost sound identical. But if you pay close attention, the YDP-164 has a bit more clarity and detail in its piano tones, which is very important.

Yamaha DGX-660 comes with the Pure CF Sound Engine
Yamaha DGX-660 comes with the Pure CF Sound Engine

+Sound Library

One of the biggest advantages the DGX-660 has over the YDP-164 is its sound library. The YDP-164 is a console digital piano, so it’s designed to look, feel, and sound closer to an acoustic piano. This is why this model only has 10 different tones, each of which is very high-quality and realistic.

The YDP-164 contains a range of acoustic and electric piano tones along with a few organ, strings, and bass sounds. These are all the sounds you’ll need a pianist, especially if you don’t plan on experimenting with synthesizers and other modern sounds.

However, if you want the versatility and freedom to play any type of music on the piano, the DGX-660 is the better option. It comes with over 550 different voices that, include the PureCF Piano voices, the voices on the YDP-164, and a lot of different tones from the XGLite sound pack.

To be honest, the DGX-660’s sound library is a mixed bag. Many tones are very realistic and would work well in both live and recorded music. However, you can also expect a range of voices that aren’t that realistic and don’t do the original instrument that much justice.

Another color of Yamaha YDP-164
Another color of Yamaha YDP-164

Feel

The winner: Tie

One thing I must say about these pianos is that they do a great job of replicating the feel of an acoustic piano. Even if the DGX-660 is a portable model, it has a similar hammer action to the YDP-164, which is why I could barely tell the difference when judging the way the pianos felt. So, it should be no surprise that both pianos came out with a point each for this category.

+Hammer Action

Both of these pianos utilize the Graded Hammer Standard or GHS system, that’s a signature feature of many Yamaha pianos. This is considered a mid-range hammer action system that replicates the slight weight differences on an acoustic piano’s keys. That’s why I felt like both the YDP-164 and the DGX-660 did a great job of replicating a real piano’s weight.

That said, this hammer action system isn’t perfect. For example, the way the keys spring back could be a bit better and smoother, like on some of the more premium Yamaha options. Additionally, the piano keys lack the texture you would typically look for in an acoustic piano.

If you’re a beginner or not that particular about how a piano feels, this shouldn’t be a big deal. But if you’re looking for the most realistic piano feel available, both of these options fall short of feeling exactly like an acoustic piano.

Piano Features

The winner: Yamaha DGX-660

Control panel of Yamaha DGX-660
Control panel of Yamaha DGX-660

The last comparison point between these two pianos is the piano features. I’m referring to the piano’s polyphony, effects, and overall versatility. And in this category, the Yamaha DGX-660 was the clear winner. You can do a whole lot more with this piano compared to the YDP-164, and it’s the main reason this piano ended up winning the entire comparison.

To start, both of these pianos have 192-note polyphony. So, you won’t have to worry about the piano not sustaining notes long enough or not having enough clarity when you play dense chords. This also comes in handy when blending multiple voices together.

However, the Yamaha DGX-660 comes with more effects than the YDP-164. This gives you more control over your tone as the DGX-660 allows you to add chorus, reverb, and EQ effects to the piano tone, while the YDP-164 only offers reverb effects.

Additionally, the DGX-660 is the more versatile model overall. As a portable piano, you can easily bring this model with you to jams, gigs, and even piano lessons. And with all the different voice options on this piano, you won’t run out of ways to experiment and truly find your sound.

Because of this, I had no choice but to declare the DGX-660 the winner. The YDP-164 is a great model if you need a console digital piano, but if you need more versatility, I’d recommend the DGX-660.

Yamaha YDP-164 vs DGX-660: The Similarities

These are very different pianos, which is what made this such a fun comparison to make. However, despite all their differences, they still share some similarities that are worth noting. That way, you get a complete picture of both pianos and the benefits they offer.

As mentioned earlier, these pianos have the same hammer action system and polyphony. I had some complaints with the GHS action, but all in all, it’s a great hammer action system for the price. And with the high maximum polyphony, there are many possibilities with either option.

Additionally, these pianos offer a lot of value for the money. While they aren’t exactly the cheapest digital pianos available, they are much more affordable than other models that come with a similar feature set.

So, you’ll be good regardless of which piano you choose. But again, I decided to declare the DGX-660 this comparison’s winner because of how versatile it is.

Quick Rundown of the Yamaha DGX-660

YAMAHA DGX660B 88-Key Weighted Digital Piano With Furniture Stand, Black
  • The Pure CF Sound Engine faithfully reproduces the tone of a meticulously sampled and highly acclaimed Yamaha concert grand piano
  • GHS weighted action is heavier in the low register and lighter in the high, just like an acoustic piano
  • Score display puts music notation of MIDI songs on the screen, helping you play your favorites by following the bouncing ball
  • The Piano room lets you choose from a variety of pianos and acoustic settings to create your own personal piano environment
  • The 6 track recorder allows you to capture your performances and song ideas, then add additional layers to spice up your pieces

Last update on 2023-02-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros
  • A versatile piano for novice to advanced pianists
  • Great hammer action system
  • Sound library features over 550 voices
  • 192-note polyphony
  • Yamaha Pure CF Sound Engine
Cons
  • The tone could be a bit more realistic
  • Inconsistent sound library

Quick Rundown of the Yamaha YDP-164

Yamaha YDP164 Arius Series Piano with Bench, Dark Rosewood
  • Your purchase includes One Yamaha Arius Series, YDP164 model | Bench, 50 Classical Music Masterpieces Book, Owner’s manual & Quick Operation Guide
  • Piano dimensions – 53-7/16” W x 33-27/64” H x 16-5/8” | Weight – 92 lbs. | Number of pedals – 3 | Max polyphony – 192 | Number of voices – 10 | Headphones – (2) Standard Stereo phone jack | With Recording and Playback capabilities
  • GHS weighted action is heavier in the low keys and lighter in the high keys, just like an acoustic piano
  • Half-damper pedal control allows for continuously increasing amounts of sustain as the pedal is depressed
  • The CFX Premium Grand Piano Voice recreates the power and tone of the flagship CFX concert grand piano from Yamaha

Last update on 2023-02-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros
  • 192-note polyphony
  • Great sound system
  • Modern and realistic piano tones
  • Graded Hammer Standard
  • Comes with reverb effects
Cons
  • Limited voices
  • Not the most flexible option

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