Yamaha P515 Review: Exceptional Sound & Feel for the Price

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The Yamaha P515 is the flagship keyboard in Yamaha’s portable series, with many features that are yet to be launched even in their larger, more expensive keyboards. It is not just a step up from the rest of the portable line but exceeds the sound quality of many of the lower-end Arius keyboards. It’s a truly exceptional instrument, with sound and feel that are incredibly rare in this price range.

Overview of Yamaha P515 Keyboard

Professional musicians and expert piano players can’t get enough of the Yamaha P515. The luxurious keyboard and rich, detailed sound are exceptional in a keyboard this size, giving the experience of playing a much bigger, more expensive, classic piano.

Even better, it is the only Yamaha P-series keyboard that has the Bösendorfer Imperial sampling, giving this piano not only the exceptional Yamaha CFX binaural sound, but the incredible Bösendorfer voice as well. 

Yamaha P515 Video Overview

Yamaha P515 Specs




  • Full size 88 key keybo

  • NWX keyboard with natural wood white keys

  • Synthetic ebony and ivory keytops


Weighs 48.5 pounds


LCD display


21 demo songs and 50 classic songs

Reverb Settings

6 types of reverb and 3 types of chorus


256 levels of polyphony

Style Control

165 built in styles with style control


26 types of harmony

Voice & Effects


  • 40 voices, 18 drums and effects, 480 XG voices

  • Bösendorfer Imperial sampling for the Bösendorfer piano voice

  • CFX binaural sampling for the grand piano voice


Dual, Split, and Duo keyboard functions

Jacks & Ports

  • 2 standard stereo headphone jacks

  • Pedal port 

  • MIDI in/out

  • AUX in/out

  • USB to device and USB to hos

Record and Playback

Record up to 250 songs onboard

Music Database

158 music database


Auto shutoff feature




1.4MB of internal memory


Oval and dome speakers with 15W amplifiers


  • 6 levels of touch sensitivity

  • Yamaha CFX sound engine 

  • Key-off samples

  • Virtual resonance modeling

  • Intelligent Acoustic Control

  • Stereophonic Optimizer

  • Adjustable tempo, tuning, transpose

  • Bluetooth audio

Yamaha P515 Features

The Yamaha P515 has the features and quality of some of Yamaha’s premium pianos, in a more compact package that is loaded with great features.




The Yamaha P515 has a full size, fully weighted Yamaha NWX keyboard with synthetic ebony and ivory keytops and 6 levels of touch sensitivity. It has a full dot LCD display, with wooden accents and polished, refined details.


The Yamaha P515 is driven by the Yamaha CFX sound engine, with binaural sampling of the Yamaha CFX 9-foot concert grand that produces exceptionally realistic sound. The Bösendorfer piano voice features Bösendorfer Imperial sampling, for an incredible sound not available in all Yamaha models.Stereophonic Optimization recreates the correct spatial distribution of sound when monitoring your keyboard with headphones, for incredible dimensional sound no matter how you listen. The sound of this keyboard is further enhanced by Virtual Resonance Modeling that replicates the distinctive reverberation produced by the body of a grand piano, calculating aliquot resistance and optimizing the resonance of the soundboard, rim, and frame of a fine analogue piano.With two 15W + 5W amplifiers and a two-way speaker system, the Yamaha P515 creates a clear, immersive, authentic piano sound. The Twisted Flare Port reduces air turbulence and provides clear, precise notes in the lower frequencies.


It has 1.4MB of internal memory, or use USB for external storage. It has two standard headphone jacks, a pedal port, MIDI in/out, AUX in and out, and USB to device and USB to host ports. It is also Bluetooth compatible, so you can use the speakers to play your favorite music wirelessly.


The Yamaha P515 is compatible with a number of free Yamaha companion apps to add extra functionality to the keyboard. Compatible apps include:


Smart Pianist, the essential app for the P515. This app allows you to access, control, and restore your piano’s setting from your smartphone or tablet, simplifying navigation and settings. The streamlined, visual interface lets you spend less time pressing buttons on the keyboard, and more time playing the piano

Visual Performer is an app that creates graphic animations along with your music. Choose from the settings you like, and then the app creates beautiful visualizations that respond as you play, making your music more visual and more expressivePiano Diary is an app that allows you to easily record, store, and share your performances.


The Piano Room function allows you to quickly set up and optimize your favorite piano playing settings on the P515. With a single button, you restore optimal piano settings, or can customize lid position, string resonance, damper resonance, and touch response. 

It comes with 40 rhythm styles for automatic accompaniment, and you can use keyboard dual or split functions to layer voices for complex compositions. 

Who the Yamaha P515 is Most Suitable For?

The Yamaha P515 is a piano player’s keyboard. With full-size, fully weighted keys, incredible sound sampling, and a speaker system that provides fantastic resonance to the ears, it is built for people who love playing the piano, listening to the piano, and sharing incredible music, but who don’t have the room or budget for a high-end acoustic piano. Every piano voice in this keyboard is rendered beautifully, and can be easily accompanied by strings, rhythms, and bass notes.

The Yamaha P515 has onboard recording and playback capability, as well as USB to device, for MIDI processing, but isn’t designed with digital sampling in mind. The Yamaha P515 is made for people who want the sound, feel, and experience of playing a high-quality classic piano, with the convenience, affordability, and low maintenance of a digital keyboard.

At 48.5 pounds and without an attached keyboard stand, the Yamaha P515 is still a portable keyboard, although it isn’t the easiest to transport. While the size and weight of the P515 aren’t particularly remarkable, it is remarkable to have such big, rich, grand piano sound from a keyboard with this footprint.

For those piano lovers who wish they had an upright piano or even a baby grand of their own, or for piano players who want to easily switch between different high-quality piano voices, and for musicians who want the best musical quality possible in a portable keyboard, the Yamaha P515 is a dream come true. 

What’s Included With the Yamaha P515

The Yamaha P515 comes with the power cord.

Additional Accessories for the Yamaha P515

The Yamaha P515 comes with the keyboard and a power cord, and the Smart Pianist app is free to download. This gives you the versatility to add a keyboard stand or console, or to upgrade your existing piano setup to this advanced model. However, it does mean that there are some accessories that most people will want to add in order to take full advantage of the capabilities of the Yamaha P515.

A 3-Pedal Unit

Since the Yamaha P515 provides such an authentic grand piano sound and feel, you really need a 3-pedal unit to complete the experience and take full advantage of the keyboard. The Yamaha LP1B is the pedal system designed for this keyboard, and it has all the traditional pedal functions and realistic feel that make it natural and intuitive to play. However, in order for this pedal system to attach and play properly, it requires the Yamaha L515 furniture stand.

Wireless Adapter

While you can always use a USB cord to connect a smart device with the P515, having a cable coming from the back of the keyboard is a bit awkward and unsightly. A wireless adapter reduces cable management, makes it simpler and more streamlined to use apps with the piano. Yamaha recommends their UDWL01 Wi-Fi adapter for this piano.

Keyboard Bundle

If you are considering purchasing the Yamaha P515, and a stand, bench, pedal system, and all the accessories, you may want to purchase a keyboard bundle instead The Yamaha P5151B bundle includes the keyboard, the Yamaha L515 piano stand, the Yamaha LP1B pedal unit, a padded piano bench with storage, a keyboard dust cover, a pair of stereo headphones, as well as a portable USB drive. This bundle is everything you need to set up the keyboard and play piano in style, bundled together at an attractive price.

Yamaha P515 Pros and Cons


  • Incredible sound samples and piano voices for exceptional sound quality in a portable keyboard
  • NWX keyboard uses cutting edge technology to create an authentic, expressive playing experience
  • Sound enhancements like binaural sampling, stereophonic optimizer, and enhanced virtual resonance modeling create dynamic, realistic, spacious sound
  • Powerful speakers with the twisted flare port keep audio clear, resonant, and accurate in all frequencies
  • Includes the Bösendorfer piano voice, not available on all Yamahas


  • Does not come with a stand
  • Only one model of keyboard stand is recommended for this keyboard and the compatible Yamaha 3-pedal system

Yamaha P515 Tutorial Videos

The YouTube channel for Bonners Music Superstore has made, not a tutorial video, but a great overview video that demonstrates the key functions of the Yamaha P515, and shows how easy it is to use and navigate this piano.

For a useful demonstration of the features and capabilities of the Yamaha Smart Pianist app, and how to use it with your Yamaha piano, YouTuber Kraft Music has made a great video

Yamaha P515 Owner’s Manual

The Yamaha P515 comes with an owner’s manual, a special manual just for connecting your smart devices, and reference sheets, which can all be downloaded here:


Yamaha P515 vs. Yamaha DGX 660

Yamaha DGX 660

The Yamaha DGX 660 is an affordable portable grand piano, with lots of digital capabilities. The DGX 660 has: 


  • A full-size 88 key weighted keyboard 
  • The one-touch Piano Room setting
  • A microphone port with three vocal performance optimizing presets and additional microphone controls
  • Damper resonance
  • LCD display with score or lyric notation
  • Live! Cool! And Sweet! Voice library
  • USB audio recording
  • Smart Chord and accompaniment style libraries
  • Intelligent Acoustic Control
  • Style recommender
  • 100 song library
  • Aux in port
  • Weighs 46 pounds without a keyboard stand

Yamaha P515

These are all great features, but in the P515, nearly everything is a bit better. The P515 has: 


  • An NWX keyboard made of wood and synthetic ebony and ivory for incredible feel while playing. The DGX 660 has GHS keyboard weighting
  • The CFX sound engine with binaural sampling, while the DGX 660 has the Pure CF sound engine
  • The  Bösendorfer piano voice isn’t available in the DGX 660
  • 256 levels of polyphony, while the DGX 660 has 192
  • The P515 also has the stereophonic optimizer, virtual resonance modeling, and the twisted flare port for exceptional sound dimension, power, and clarity.

With its built-in library, app compatibility, and chord tracker, the DGX 660 is great for intermediate players and performers who want to polish their skills on a great piano. It also has a wide range of microphone supporting features that the P515 does not, making it a great choice for singer/songwriters. 

The P515 is the flagship keyboard in its class, and has been crafted with exceptional refinement and detail to create an authentic piano sound and playing experience. For those who love the feel and response of the NWK keyboard, the voice of the  Bösendorfer, and detailed, sophisticated sound, with or without headphones, the P515 is the better choice. 

​Merriam Music’s Yamaha P515 Review


With the P515, Yamaha has made a portable keyboard that out-performs not only competitive keyboards in its class and price range, but it also out-performs larger, more expensive Yamahas. The P515 doesn’t have all the advanced smart features of many other keyboards, but that isn’t the purpose of the instrument. 

The P515 was designed to make piano players feel like they are playing a real, resonant, high-quality classic piano, and every detail in the look, feel, and sound of this keyboard is intended to recreate that experience. 

Yamaha P515 88-Key Weighted Action Digital Piano, Black

Yamaha P515 (click image for more info)

Most piano lovers agree that the Yamaha P515 delivers a lush, luxurious soundscape, whether you are playing the legendary Yamaha CFX grand or the iconic Bösendorfer Imperial. For what it was designed to do, the Yamaha P515 is a hard keyboard to beat, even at a much higher price


I am intrigued by how music affects the brain. I created this site to share my fascination with music in general and piano keyboards in particular.

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