Updated: Aug 26
I didn't expect the Yamaha YDS-120/150 electronic saxophone would be a good wind controller before because it does not have a bite sensor and I didn't know how its midi function would work with other sound modules. After applying my midi knowledge and experiences modifying various wind controllers to this basic/cheaper YDS-120 model, I was able to make a fantastic digital saxophone controller : adding a bite sensor, adjusting pitch bend range & breath sensitivity / curves by midi programming, wireless midi function, rechargeable Lipo battery. etc. I also added a DIY bell with a bigger/louder speaker. With this, now I cannot put down my augmented YDS-120 saxophone from my hands. It works great with the Audiomodeling saxophone app, V-horns saxophone as well as Yamaha VL synthesizers like VL-1m and VL-70m.
YDS-120 Pros & Cons
- same keys and sounds from YDS-150
- no blue tooth connection
- customizable fingering (but some glitches)
- short battery life
- same saxophone key arrangement
- some keys/fingering can be difficult to use (rarely, can be overcome by custom fingering)
- Adjustable breath sensitivity, dynamic and key touch sensitivity
- difficult playing with straight neck/mouth piece
- Midi function can be set on the YDS app. It can send the real time velocity value related to breath and aftertouch.
Snapshots about how to modify YDS-120 into a wireless midi digital saxophone
Materials/Components : YDS-120, CME WIDI host x2, MIDI Expression pedal USB controller, Pressure sensor resistor, Lipo battery, 3" full Round Miniature Speaker, Type-C USB 5V 2A Boost Converter Step-Up Power Module Lithium Battery Charging Protection Board , USB cables, 24.5 mm Alto Saxophone Sax Bend Neck Brass/mouthpiece/ligature, etc.