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  1. Fernando
  2. Sherlock Holmes The Voice
  3. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  4. Tuesday, 23 March 2021
Available in several MONTHS, they say.

No way to find a store with stock, when searching for a Yamaha Montage.

A replacement coming soon after five years ?
Always thought I would be waiting until March 2027 for the next one becoming finally available in stores...but one never knows.
Responses (14)
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Maybe.

However....

There's also incredible supply chain shortages, the likes of which have never been seen in our industrial modern era. Likely due to stalled production, for various reasons.

EVERYTHING is increasing in price, despite claims from just about every government and central bank that there's no significant inflation, there's enormous price inflation occurring. Look across at products and industries where you've got a few years of familiarity with the pricing, and look at what things are now priced at.

Even second hand goods (like motorcycles) are increasing in price like they've never done before.

Food discounting in your favourite supermarkets - notice there's not as much of it as occurring as there was 15 months ago.

There's (apparently) a global shortage of processors. This is what's being used to justify slowing or stalling production of many models of many cars in many countries.

If you're a downstream producer (like GM) do you think you're going to be immediately paying invoices to your supply chain for cars that haven't yet been built, for the parts you've got piled up as inventory for later full production?

As a result, most supply chain producers are stalled, simply because they can't get paid prudently.

My guess: many down chain producers that sent people home during lockdowns have had enough time to realise that demand has not yet rebounded, so they're mostly not starting up all/any production they don't need to do, so as to not build up inventory... because NOBODY knows when (or if) normal market conditions will return.

If, for example, Yamaha is worried that there's not going to be a return to normal market conditions for 2 years (and if you believe the double and triple mask loving Fauci of the CDC, that's looking like 3 to 5 years), then you'd be inclined to stall any and all production of ageing models in favour of younger (MODX in this case) models. Interestingly, outside of VERY big e-tailers (like SweetWater), the MODX is hard to get a hold of, too.

Many regions of Europe are locking down, again. Some places seem to be on never-never plans for re-opening.

Without stable income, who is going to buy this stuff?

Without entertainment venues operating, who is going to need to buy and replace this stuff?

These are questions production managers and finance folks in all corporations are asking. We might be heading into the greatest depression in modern memory. Complete with runaway inflation...
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 1
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Well, I think of Montage as the ideal companion when planning to be locked indoors for the next ten years...So inspiring...:D :D :D :D
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 3
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Asking for availability of the Montage 8 in France to a shop dealer, he told me a big factory had recently burnt in Asia :
https://www.prosoundnetwork.com/business/akm-factory-fire-shakes-up-pro-audio-industry

Web search shows several fires in several big chips factories... this must explain the extreme scarcity of Yamaha products.

I hope one other reason is not the stopping of improving Montage, in benefice of a future flagship keyboard...
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 4
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Well, I think of Montage as the ideal companion when planning to be locked indoors for the next ten years...So inspiring...:D :D :D :D


I tend to agree. I think I'm just beginning to understand FM.

It feels very different from when I begun to understand subtractive synthesis.

At the point I begun to understand subtractive synthesis, I began to see its extents, limitations and foibles, and work within them, and to exploit them, and really dug into envelopes and LFOs.

The opposite is occurring with FM. Each time I learn a bit more about it, I see a wider and deeper scape, and the ability to do more with just FM, before heading to the other bits that mutate and move it around 'externally'.

Other than the nuisance of the user "flow", the lack of useful info in the interface and the dreadful envelopes... I think I now want to upgrade daughter's MODX to a Montage for the extra FM polyphony.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 5
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Ohhh.... upgrading MODX. Congratulations.

I always refrained from buying far or even second next to the top of the line since in the end it turns out to be cheaper.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 6
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
For reference, Montage uses these AKM chips:

ADC AK5381VT-E2
DAC AK4393VM-E2
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 7
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Global shipping is currently messed up. Suez Canal is blocked. Many ports have ships waiting off-shore, too.

The pandemic has really frazzled global business.

Stay health and happy. Peace -- pj
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 8
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
I have seen quite a few complaints about Yamahas Product Release policy.

The main gripes seem to be:-

1) No indication if or when upgrades/patches to existing products will be released.

2) No indication that New Product release is either being planned or imminent.

3) In relation to 2), sudden new product releases that make current products somewhat obsolete. There's been a few cases where customers have bought current products only to see the new superceding product released a few days later.

This "alternative" approach may be of interest....

I have noticed a trend amongst some guitar product manufacturers to do the following:-

1) Announce cease of production on a particular product. Retailers are made aware before the public and impact consultation takes place. There may be offers made - end-of-line price concessions, stock returns etc. The public is made aware in due course. This can actually boost sales, particularly if a product was known to be high quality or unique in some way.

2) Have Product Release "Tease" campaigns. There will be an announcement, maybe 3-6 months in advance, that a new product or line of products is on its way, usually with an official release date and time.

The "Tease" aspect usually involves release of abstract or cryptic media hinting at what the product will be. In the guitar world this usually drives 100's of pages of "speculation" posts, where everyone contends to be the first person to "guess right" or figure out the clues.

Strymon, Fender and Roland/Boss have been "guilty" of teasing us in the last few years.

Personally, I find all the teasing a little bit irritating but....

a) they are not revealing much to the competition either.

b) The consumers are at least aware there may be a product supercedence, and so hold off purchasing any current product (unless a product retirement and discount has also been announced).

Product retirements and New Product releases do not necessarily tally. You can't bank on a like-for-like replacement, so thats why end-of-line sales are usually maintained.


Put all this in context to the Montage/MODX. If such a policy was followed, it would give the customer base some options.

The MONTAGE is an excellent product that covers the needs of many players. So, some may well decide to buy a MONTAGE while they still can, particularly if discounted early. Other's will decide to wait and see.

This happened fairly recently with venerable Fender Stratocaster. At some point in the past (2018?), Fender announced that the Professional Strat and the Elite Strat were being discontinued. They said (cleverly) that these models would be replaced by more modern designs. Guitarists are very conservative, "modern" is not a good word for many. The Pro and Elite were (still are) excellent guitars and they suddenly sold like hot cakes, even to the point stores ran out of stock, and had no resupply for months, until Fender eventually announced the Pro II and the Ultra. These had apparently been sitting in the distributor warehouses for at least a few weeks, if not those same "empty shelve" months. However Stores were not allowed to sell these new guitars until the official release date had passed. When they hit the stores guitarists loved them. In tandem, Fender also released and extra couple of lines - "vintage" era specifics.. 50's or 60's.. to keep the conservatives wholly catered for.

By all accounts, a very successful product evolution campaign... everyone's happy.


So, Fender et al, have obviously put a lot of thought into their product evolution and release policies. To wit, minimising impact on retailers and consumers, whilst still maintaining their business imperatives.

Maybe Yamaha could learn from this.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 9
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
There are plenty of folks still using Motif XS - I see pros still carrying these. I don't really think musical instruments become obsolete when a new model comes out.

Buy what satisfies your needs.

Computers, phones, etc have cyclic refreshes so one could wait forever if they were worried about the next model being better - which they typically are (speed, buses, features). But at some point you've got to put a stake in the ground if you need something. Be prepared to think the grass is greener or wait forever.

Yes, you could get unlucky and buy the day before the new model. I don't think Yamaha needs to come out with a roadmap for folks to make intelligent decisions. The product life cycle has a history and you could use that as a guide. Still even when the new model comes out - Montage or MODX may be the best choice for some.

This thread isn't really about roadmap and being tight-lipped. Although I do recognize the secondary relationship - mostly this is about what seems to be a shortage unrelated to the roadmap. In a normal year, I'd tend to see it as a sign - but I'm not so sure this is case. Fingers loosely crossed.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 10
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
I think Fernando alludes to both topics in the original post....

- current supply issues & empty stores
- Next generation/evolution release date... 5 years? March 2027?

I drew comparisons just because they were there to be drawn. I don't know much about the keyboardist demographic. I do know guitarists are a funny bunch, and whether they are serious musicians or just novice collectors with a stack of disposable income, they're still consumers, and aren't afraid to air their voice, and vote with their credit cards.

Gibson nearly went bankrupt a few years ago for sitting on its laurels and not paying attention. Fender on the other hand took notice and is doing very well by comparison.

I don't have any axe to grind, just an objective observation.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 11
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
cases where customers have bought current products only to see the new superceding product released a few days later.

Dealers usually have return windows of 30+ days.

Whenever you buy, there's pretty much always going to be something better (from the same manufacturer or from someone else) if you wait. You can minimize any related disappointment by not buying something until you actually need it. But what fun is that? ;-)
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 12
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation

...3) In relation to 2), sudden new product releases that make current products somewhat obsolete. There's been a few cases where customers have bought current products only to see the new superceding product released a few days later.


I have used the modx 6 for a few months now and consider upgrading to the montage 6, partly because I would prefer a better keybed. But the montage is now five years old and I am afraid of ending up in the situation you describe. 3-3500 USD is a very big investment to me and I assume the value would drop by at least 1000 USD overnight if Yamaha announce a superceeding product. If I knew a new product will not be released within the next two years, I would buy it without hesitating. Now, I actually consider the Roland Fantom and then (perhaps) selling it when Yamaha releases a new synth. Manufacturers must loose many sales because of the strategy of keeping everything secret. (sorry for the bad english)
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 13
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
When you purchase any keyboard - even on the first day of release - there's going to be some number of days that pass and then a new version comes out.

For me - I don't buy every version of the keyboard line. I make an investment in cash and time and hold on to this until something else comes along that I feel has enough improvements to invest again in time and money. This is rarely the next generation. Yamaha keyboards - and keyboards from other manufacturers of the same class - are deep instruments. Even older ones are. The longer you keep one - the better you get at navigation, creation, even playing as you adapt to the keybed.

Now - how ever many days you would hypothetically have between a purchase today of a Montage and the next model is unknown. At least to me and most. However many days this is - maybe it's above your magic number of satisfaction or maybe not. This kind of thing holds true with everything. If you need a tool/device/etc (like a computer, synthesizer, etc) - you can either wait or buy. Sometimes you can wait - the new one comes out - you're underwhelmed - and wait some more another generation. Maybe this means you're out a keyboard. Or maybe it means you live with the one you have and skip a generation. All of this is personal - it's up to you.

I do think the Montage has a better keybed - that may be a good reason to move to Montage. You'll also get more controls with it - more digital audio outputs - more of lots of things. If you like MODX - then Montage is just more of what you like.

Now it's up to you if you want to play the waiting game or live with the keybed you have for longer.

Keep in mind the used market may help sweeten the deal for you. I would tend to stick with reputable music stores as they tend to stand by their sales more than individuals. In other words, if a problem is found - a music store is likely going to work with you where individuals tend to be "as-is". Your mileage may vary.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. MONTAGE Series Synthesizers
  3. # 14
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