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Microphone Month 3

Yamaha WX5 Reviews

4.5 stars based on 8 customer reviews
  • from Maryville Tenn. December 19, 2016Music Background:
    Mostly self taught.

    Love My WX5

    I have had the wx5 for about 10 years and love it. Used to play sax but lost my wind power. The wx5 uses wind power but not as much as the saxophone. I play mostly in church with other instruments. I use a Yamaha VL70 sound module for my sounds. It has lots of stuff to pick from. 250 different sounds in all.

  • from Bossier City, Louisiana December 5, 2012Music Background:
    student and just a hobbyist.

    yamaha wx5

    great instrument, love it.

  • from Columbia, MD February 16, 2010Music Background:


    I've had my wx5 for about 4 years now and it is truly a blessing in the sky.It is the best sounding horn ever,next to the real thing you can't tell the differents, once you use it you will know whyI say this. Buy it it's worth every penny.

  • from Northern Illinois September 30, 2008Music Background:
    Theater Musician

    Opens lots of creative possibilities

    As a sax player, it was easy to start making music with the WX5--the basic fingerings are the same as a sax.

    I originally used a Roland GR-33 as the tone generator with the WX5 set for MIDI out (MIDI output level is at max (0x7F), and the breath control pressure changed the volume). This was good but, the sound was always the same. Then, I got a VL-70m and set the WX5 for wind control out. WOW! The WX5 went from a MIDI wind controller to an electronic wind instrument with all the subtile nuances of moving air and changing timbre as the volume changed. The sound came alive.

    The keys on the WX5 seem to be delicate so I've always been very careful handling the instrument. The keys provide immediate response to changing fingerings. I've had to change my playing style a bit to release or change key combinations in a particular order. There are alternate fingerings available that will help get through fast music passages.

    Overall, if you get the WX5, you should also get the VL-70m for some very realistic sax and WW sounds. (See my VL-70m review).

  • from fargo, nd August 3, 2014Music Background:
    Music administrator/instructor/retired

    wx5 review

    I have had a wx5 for about 6 years now and have blown everyone away with its capacity as a midi instrument. I upgraded my vl70 a couple years ago with a new chip and the quality of sounds in the woodwinds especially are great. For a musician at 75, it is a great instrument to play for hours at a time and never get tired.

  • from SW Michigan January 11, 2013Music Background:
    PLay in worship band; guitar & keyboard

    I figured it out

    I'm getting ready to retire and wanted to do something to keep my mind working. I play guitar and keyboard so trying a new instrument will put a strain on the brain.

    I'm picking up the easy portion and have the settings for "flute". The fingering chart in the back of the manual doesn't necessarily match the sound I get, but I can play a scale after a week of practicing for an hour or so a day.

    It seems well built and getting though all the settings was a little intimidating at first, but I'm determined. I'm well pleased with it. Now just have to get my fingers to do what my mind wants them to.

  • from Dallas, Texas September 3, 2007Music Background:
    Pro Musician, engineer, and director.

    WX-5, The New MIDI Wind Controller

    The current incarnation of Yamaha's WX line is the WX-5, following in the wind channels of the original WX-7 and the WX-11 which followed it. While not as elegant as the WX-7, the WX-5 is a workhorse with many, many times more options to make it more playable. Even if you're accustomed to the older models, this one has a learning curve and will take a while to get familiar with its idiosyncrasies. The octave keys are far, far better, but still take getting used to. Trust me, you can do it. It just takes a while. If your sounds aren't Breath Control sensitive you needn't worry. You can also output CC#7 (volume) or CC#11 (expression) to cover most MIDI instruments. You can set velocities for a constant, or you can attack them; again that gives more flexibility with more ways that sounds are typically programmed.

    The instrument is lightweight, which saves neck fatigue, but it also makes it hard to hold. You can load it with batteries for more weight. That's also one of several options for power, and it will accept a regular MIDI cable for signal output; gone is the proprietary connection format and the little battery box, though it can still use that, too, if you have one and want it.

    Greater range, easier control, more options including various fingering systems make the WX-5 the best wind controller yet. The WX-7 still is the most elegant looking, but looks do not make music. These devices can indeed make music, and while you're in for a learning curve, woodwind players should rejoice that there is still a MIDI Wind instrument that gives us such expressive capabilities.

    Thanks, Yamaha!

  • from Tucson, AZ May 16, 2014Music Background:
    40 years playing sax/flute + 15 years on the WX

    Quality Control Issues

    I owned my last WX5 for around 15 years, and I had great service from it, but recently the first octave key started cutting out and became intermittent. It was time for an upgrade, so I purchased a brand new WX5 online. The first WX I received had an issue with one of the keys making a loud slapping sound when I pushed it. It was very distracting. Fortunately that WX was quickly replaced, however the second WX I received was unplayable right out of the box. It took me about 40 minutes of adjusting two of the potentiometers under the rubber plugs near the top of the instrument before I got it to the point where it would consistently work play. Then, as I started playing my new WX I noticed I has having an issue with the B key (under the left index finger), and I found that I was having to push extra hard on the key to keep the B triggered. Often it would play wrong notes if I didn't consciously think about keeping the B key pushed down hard. I didn't want to send my second WX5 back so I fully disassembled the instrument and used a file and some two part epoxy to clean up the interface between the key and the nylon plunger underneath the key that triggers the B note. For now it seems to be working very well, but I'm not happy with the quality issues I had. Yamaha wind controllers have long been criticized for their plastic cheap feel in your hands, and I was ok with that, but as far as I am aware the quality control issue is a new one. In my opinion Yamaha needs to update the WX5 and work on getting their quality back up to what we have come to expect from the Yamaha brand. Really, overall Yamaha is a great company, but needless to say, I would not recommend buying a WX5.

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