Yamaha Soprano P-S25F

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  • #5724
    AvatarAlan Brinton
    Participant

    Surprise! How has this not caught our attention before now? It is not something new. I was aware that Yamaha produced P-S25 Pianicas as early as 1973. But having seen no references anywhere to Yamaha’s having made a soprano, I was convinced that the “S” stood for something other than “soprano.” However, I stumbled upon an expired eBay listing for this model that describes it as having a “harmonica range.” And I now see that it is currently in production and is available in Japan.

    (Lowboy, I hope your pacemaker is operational this morning.)

    Yamaha S25 models have the same key range as the Suzuki S-25 sopranos, the first of which was introduced during the 1960s.

    #5725
    AvatarAdam Tombs
    Participant

    Currently looking at a pianica P-25D Alan. What can you tell me about this model please. Seller is saying 1970’s……

    #5726
    AvatarAlan Brinton
    Participant

    I have a P-25D and a P-25C, Adam. They are earlier versions of the P-25F. The C was made 1978-79, the D 1980-83. When my brother was here about a month ago, I gave him the P-25D to use, and we played together quite a bit, with me using a 1970s Suzuki A-25. It’s almost identical in sound and functionality to the P-25F, though the P-25 has been refined in successive models, and I would choose an F over a D, and a D over a C. My P-25C has a bit of the sticky keys issue, but the P-25D does not.

    The big jump was from the P-25B to the P-25C.

    The photo in the Reviews page for the P-25F is actually of a P-25D.

    Yamaha P-25F

    The distinguishing features of the P-25D are two-tone coloring (cream on the bottom), the “Pianica” label, and “Made in Japan.” I paid $45 U.S. plus $15 for shipping, which is about the same as what a P-25F costs. I think the P-25D is worth that, but I also believe you could, with patience, score one for about half that. These models are pretty durable. So if it looks good in photos, it’s a relatively safe buy. These are very nice Pianicas.

    #5727
    AvatarAdam Tombs
    Participant

    Thanks for this Allan. Your knowledge is very comprehensive. I hope to be paying about the same amount you paid or a little less.

    #6752
    AvatarAlan Brinton
    Participant

    I have two Yamaha P-S25 soprano Pianicas, a P-S25F (1991-present) made in Indonesia and a P-S25E (1983-91) made in Japan. I decided to work first with the P-25E, as it is in better condition, was more in tune, and seems to be of higher quality construction (though this impression may be due to the difference in their condition). The E version also has the more compact older case and is of a reasonable blue color, as contrasted with the F’s putrid green. Here’s the P-S25F. I’ve had to adjust to show the real color, as my camera refuses to acknowledge this color in a melodica. Here also are the cases for comparison.

    We move on now to the P-S25E

    You can see where stickers were affixed to keys.

    Everything other than the range of notes and reeds (F4-F6) is essentially the same as in the alto counterpart, the P-25F. Solid construction, good fit of all parts, large screws both on the main body and on the reed cover. These models can be easily and repeatedly disassembled and assembled. Whatever the material of the main gasket is, it does not deteriorate over time. The reed chamber is completely airtight.




    We can see that this Pianica has been subjected to amateur tuning. It (like the comparable Suzuki Soprano I posted on recently) was way out of tune. I decided to tune to A=440, again using my Wen variable speed electric engraver.


    I won’t go into details of the tuning, except to say that it was a long process during which I opened up the Pianica nine times and also found myself having to make gapping adjustments — maybe because I have recently become more conscious of the need to adjust gaps so all the notes play uniformly and there’s no choking, but also so each note has the feeling of playing freely and without hesitation. I realized in this my second experience using the electric engraver that it works more predictably when applied near the base of the reed to flatten. I ended up getting the sharpening of notes toward the tip of the reed right by scraping with the curved, pointed files that I have used in the past.

    From my recent experience working on the 1970s Suzuki Soprano 25 and the Yamaha P-S25F, I have concluded that tuning and gapping are more challenging with these soprano melodicas but that they are critical in getting a clean and pleasant sound.

    #6755
    AvatarAlan Brinton
    Participant

    I have prepared a few sound clips comparing the 1970s Suzuki Soprano 25 with the Yamaha P-S25E. Let’s see if this works

    https://www.dropbox.com/home/Suzuki%20Soprano%2025%20(1970s)%20and%20Yamaha%20P-S25E

    or this and scroll down through clips

    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/content_link/WDaBkKvd5pQuOhFDccfdFCqU4PMK8HQwIxqAq5bidEyLwmOf7qvxdnWouYziwYzW/file

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