Rackmountable Synth with 1000+ Voices, 65 Drum Kits, 355MB Wave Form Data, Cubase AI Software, and USB
5/5 9 Write review Item ID: MotifXSRack
Yamaha MOTIF-RACK XS image 1
Yamaha MOTIF-RACK XS image 1
Sweetwater Exclusive
Hundreds in Add-on Sounds and More!
The Motif XS Rack you buy from Sweetwater gives you valuable extras! The Sweetwater Bonus CD-ROM is filled with presets from the Motif ES in XS format, presets from the MO8 in XS format, advanced XS Tricks with loadable XS files, all current Mac and PC Drivers, PDF copies of all Manuals and Guides plus XS tutorials and Tweak Tips, and more!
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The MOTIF-RACK with FREE Sweetwater Extras!

Sweetwater has given the Yamaha MOTIF-RACK XS the XSpert treatment, with dozens of FREE additional tools! This powerful synthesizer gives you the power to create, using the Xpanded Articulation Synth engine's 355 MB of WAVE ROM, real-time control knobs for adjusting your sound as your record or perform, and Virtual Circuitry Modeling effects to fire your imagination. What's more, there's also a powerful MOTIF-RACK XS Editor for tweaking in-depth parameters right from your computer. The creativity-inducing, sonic power of Yamaha's flagship MOTIF, in a convenient rackmount synth - that's what you get with the MOTIF-RACK XS.

Sweetwater's MOTIF-RACK XSpert Features:
  • A Cubase AI Tutorial DVD with 23 high-quality videos for Mac/PC
Plus, A SW Bonus CD-ROM filled with:
  • Presets from the Motif ES in XS format
  • Presets from the MO8 in XS format
  • Advanced XS Tricks with loadable XS files
  • All current Mac and PC Drivers for the XS Rack
  • PDF copies of all Manuals and Guides
  • XS Tutorials in PDF form
  • XS Tweak Tips in PDF form
  • All X Factor Songs in .mp3 format
  • Analog XS Instrument file
Yamaha MOTIF-RACK XS Synthesizer at a Glance:
  • Wealth of Sounds
  • Store Your Favorite Settings
  • Studio-quality Effects
  • Quickly Find and Preview Voices
  • Real-time Sound Control
  • Ready to Use with Your DAW
  • Edit Parameters from Your Computer
  • Comes with Cubase AI 4 Software

Wealth of Sounds
The heart of the MOTIF-RACK XS is its incredible set of voices for every application. It uses the same tone-generation architecture as the acclaimed MOTIF XS - just in a compact rackmount unit that's easy to take to the gig and back. It boasts a full 1,152 voices, and 65 drum kits to start heating up your creativity: luscious grand pianos, realistic sounds for virtually every orchestral instrument, vintage organs and electric pianos, expressive guitars, powerful basses, synth sounds of every stripe, ethnic instruments, and a massive variety of drum kits and percussion sets. In whatever musical direction you tend to lean, the MOTIF-RACK XS has the sounds you want - and the sounds you'll want, should you get into another style of music.

Store Your Favorite Settings
First of all, you can store a whopping 384 of your original voices on the instrument itself, which you'll create from the MOTIF-RACK-XS's 2,670 separate waveforms! There's also a multi-mode library of multi-instrument settings that you can call up immediately when you're composing or arranging. This collection has several different parts pre-programmed with voices and other settings, to fit a variety of genres and applications, such as R&B, hip-hop, jazz, film scoring, electronic, Latin, rock, and more. Just select a template, and you're well on your way to composing and recording your own demos or full-on recordings. Plus, up to 128 of your original multis can be stored to memory.

Studio-quality Effects
Eight Insertion effects, two System Effects, a Master Effect Block, and independent Part EQ and Master EQ - the MOTIF-RACK-XS gives you an incredible amount of processing power. Sweeten your overall sound with reverb and chorus system effects, while you use insertion effects (53 available types!) to enhance or transform individual instruments, as needed. Plus, the MOTIF-RACK-XS has various newly-developed VCM (Virtual Circuitry Modeling) effects - reproducing the coveted sound of vintage processors, and premium effect units.

Quickly Category Search and Preview Voices
On the MOTIF-RACK-XS, there's a powerful Category Search feature so you can easily and quickly get the Voices you want. Plus, you don't even need a keyboard connected to audition voices. With its Audition feature, you can just use Category Search to call up a list of bass Voices, for example, and when you find one that interests you, just press the AUDITION button and you'll hear a riff or phrase using that Voice. If you leave the AUDITION button on, you can press the up and down keys to instantly hear what other voices sound like. Ultimately, with the MOTIF-RACK-XS, if inspiration strikes, and you have a sound in your head that you want to use - you can find it and implement it immediately, rather than laboring through patches and losing both time and creative energy.

Real-time Sound Control
The enormous power under the hood of the MOTIF-RACK-XS is literally at your fingertips, thanks to its five Control Knobs. You can tweak the sound of the instrument in real-time, instead of wading through display pages of parameters. You can use the SELECT button to call up whichever row of parameters you want, and the knobs immediately change roles. The end result? A faster path to making and applying your creative decisions. And, two of the knobs are even assignable so you can choose your own favorite parameters for custom control.

Ready to Use with Your DAW
All you need is a USB cable to use the MOTIF-RACK-XS with your computer-based music production system. You'll enjoy seamless, bi-directional communication for recording and playback. Plus, if you're after even more I/O flexibility, Yamaha's optional mLAN16E2 interface lets you connect the MOTIF-RACK-XS to your computer via FireWire, communicating 16-out/16-in audio, in addition to all of your MIDI data - all in a single FireWire cable. With the optional interface, you can record 14 individual parts, along with the main stereo output from the instrument, all to your computer at once. You can also route three stereo busses from your DAW right back to the MOTIF-RACK XS for monitoring, and additional effects processing without adding an extra load on your computer's CPU.

Edit Parameters From Your Computer
With the MOTIF-RACK-XS, you have comprehensive control over all Voice, Multi, and Drum settings from your computer, via the powerful MOTIF-RACK XS Editor software - it even lets you access detailed parameters that aren't available from the front panel. Tweak settings easily by just dragging-and-dropping, and rest assured knowing that the software will in work perfect sync with the hardware - both immediately reflecting your changes.

Comes with Cubase AI 4 Software
Get creative right away using the included Cubase AI 4 software that's bundled with the MOTIF-RACK XS. You'll enjoy extensive recording and production capabilities, plus an entire suite of VST effect plug-ins giving you all the tools you need to lay out your songs, and create fully-fledged, professional demos.

Yamaha MOTIF-RACK XS Features:
  • 160 x 64-dot graphic backlit LCD
  • Tone Generator - AWM2, with Expanded Articulation
  • Polyphony - 128 notes
  • Wave - 355MB (when converted to 16-bit linear format), 2,670 waveforms
  • Voice - Preset: 1,024 Normal Voices + 64 Drum Kits
  • GM: 128 Normal Voices + 1 Drum Kit
  • User: 128 x 3 Normal Voices + 32 Drum Kits (Both of the User Voices are selected and copied from Preset bank)
  • Multi - User: 128 Multis
  • Reverb - 9 types
  • Chorus - 22 types
  • Insertion A - 53 types (up to 8 blocks available in the Multi mode)
  • Insertion B - 53 types (up to 8 blocks available in the Multi mode)
  • Master Effect - 9 types
  • Master EQ - 5 bands (High, High Mid, Mid, Low Mid, Low)
  • Part EQ - 3 bands (High, Mid, Low)
  • Arpeggio Type - 6,633 types
  • MIDI Sync, MIDI transmit/receive channel, Velocity Limit, and Note Limit can be set.
  • Front Panel - PHONES
  • Rear Panel - USB To Host, MIDI In/Out, Digital Output, Assignable Output L and R, Output L/Mono and R, DC/IN, mLAN (when the mLAN16E2 has been installed)
  • AC Power adapter (PA-301, PA-300B or an equivalent), Owner's manual, Data List, Disk x 1 (containing DAW software)
  • Comes with Cubase AI Software
  • Digital Output - 44.1kHz, 24bit (COAXIAL)
  • Weight - 9.25lbs
The MOTIF-RACK-XS gives you the ultra-powerful MOTIF voices - all in a compact rackmount synth!

Tech Specs

Sound Engine Type(s) ROM
Polyphony 128 Notes
Number of Presets 768
Expansion FireWire Card Available
Number of Effects 280
Effects Types Reverb, Chorus, EQ
Arpeggiator Yes
Analog Outputs 6 x TS, 1 x TRS (Headphones)
Digital Outputs 1 x S/PDIF
MIDI I/O In/Out/Thru/USB
USB 1 x Type B
Height 1.73"
Width 18.9"
Depth 14.66"
Weight 9.04 lbs.
Power Supply Included
Manufacturer Part Number MOTIF-RACK XS

Customer Reviews

Based on 9 reviews
Write your review

Oustanding Sounds - Warm and Edgy!

Yamaha Motif Rack XS excellent sounds blew me away. Surprisingly it has a very warm sound quality, perhaps because of the VCM (virtual circuit modeling) based effects. Drums are really punchy. It's also a lot of fun to jam with the MULTIs - 4 simultaneous combined voices, each with its own arpeggio and settings. Love it !!


I've had this two month's now and still have not heard every sound. And the sounds that I have heard sound so real! - (The one's that are suppose to sound like orchestra instruments) I purchased it to go with the Yamaha Wind controller, WX-5. I'm getting ready to retire and need a hobby, so I'm going to teach myself how to play it!
Music background: Play in worship band; guitar & keyboard, hobby

MOTIF-RACK XS . . . Hard to beat for it's Size

There's alot of sound power packed into this little unit. The volume of sounds alone is quite astounding! And these are professional sounds, not all will be "useable" for every musician of course, but I can not imagine that any musician will not be able to find a vast abundance of great sounds and performances capable of putting just about any kind of lead or backup at their finger-tips. Yamaha is noted for making well built products. This one is no different. The only thing you might find a bit annoying is the size of the data on the front panel readout area, but this is in no way a deal-breaker. So if you are looking for a one rack unit with an abundance of sound and performances, most very quite usable, and with editing power to boot, you won't regret your purchase. Great quality for the dollar.
Music background: Arranger, Keyboardist, Sound & Video

Very Nice Rack Synth

Pros 1. Many very useful voices right out of the box. 2. Very flexible and easy to maintain favorites list. Understand they are sorted by bank plus voice number. 3. With 5 encoders * 4 groupings, you can access 20 key parameters at performance time. 2 of these are assignable. 4. Category search is good but a properly maintained favorites may be faster for performance use. Cons 5. I do not yet see a method for control input of Leslie speed from the master controller. There are no hardware control inputs on the rack that can be used. This is where the Motif or S90 would have an advantage. 6. The MIDI filters could be expanded / enhanced. Even though Program change is disabled, some parameters are changed with changes from the master controller. 7. This rack does not have a feature called patch remain. I.E., the currently sustained chord will drop out when switching voices. Overall, this is great way to add voices to any configuration you may have. Most voices are good without any edits. This little box may make me into a pure Yamaha convert with regard to keyboards.
Music background: live sound, hobbyist, praise & worship


The title says it all. The motif rack is just as good as the full sized motif: you get all the patches, effects, and MIDI latency is pretty much nonexistant. The instruments sound great, especially the guitars. And the effects are amazing. I don't think most people realize how realsitic the effects are on the motif, but the vcm compressor and EQs are dope. It actually sounds like I'm patching through an 1176 or 550: for example, driving the compressor hard will cause a nice distortion if you're looking for that. Trust me, if you're looking for a keyboard, BUY THE MOTIF RACK!! You'll get the best features of the full size version for a third of the cost.
Music background: Hobbyist, someday-recording-engineer
See also: Yamaha, Yamaha Synthesizers