Anybody an expert on the Yamaha MU 100? I bought a used one. I have a keyboard midi controller inputting into it, and it outputs directly to a speaker. I use it for live performance.

When I go to the XG mode (press Mode switch, then press Select to highlight XG), I can choose any of hundreds of MIDI voices that sound great.

When I go to performance mode (press Mode, then press Select to highlight PFM), I can choose any of the existing Internal performances.

I can replace the MIDI voice of an existing Internal performance with one of the XG voices. When I do this, the voice is clearly based on the XG voice, but it sounds different from the XG voice. I don't know what's wrong with the voice. There are a multitude of settings that could be affecting the voice: revberb, EQ, Attack Time, etc. I've adjusted both the performance settings and the individual voice settings on that performance, and I've tried to match them to what appears on the XG voice, but it still always sounds wrong.

I want to reproduce exactly the XG voice in my performance. That way I can apply a keyboard split to a couple of XG voices to simulate two different instruments in my left and right hand.

Can anyone tell me how to faithfully reproduce the XG voice in PFM (performance) mode? I know almost nothing about digital music, but this feels like it should be easy to me, like it should be possible to clear whatever settings exist on a performance when replacing the performance's voice with a new XG voice.

I copy the XG voice into the performance this way:

  1. In performance mode, I use the Value + / Value - buttons to choose a performance number. For the sake of simplicity I choose Internal performance 088, which has only one part.

  2. I press both Part buttons at once to adjust the part.

  3. I use the Select + / Select - and Value + / Value - to choose a voice. The banks and numbers match those in XG mode exactly. For example, choosing bank 00, voice 074 chooses a flute.

When I go to play the Performance, it sounds "flutish," but it's clearly not the same flute.

Here's a Google spreadsheet of settings I discovered and tried to adjust.

  • 1
    Can you be more specific about how the patches sound different in performance mode? Usually this kind of thing is due to limited internal effects. In one-sound mode, you get the full effects unit. But in performance mode, each of the sounds share the same effects unit. So if you are working with sounds that have different effects, they won't sound the same when played together. Dec 28, 2012 at 5:12
  • ObscureRobot, I can't really put words on how they sound different. It may well be effects. If I use the XG voice in a single-voice performance mode (this is the case with Internal 088), shouldn't I be able to reproduce the full effects unit on that voice? Am I missing some way to overwrite the PFM effects with the XG effects? There are dozens of settings under different menus and submenus. Maybe I'm matching some where I shouldn't be, resulting in an additive effect: e.g. setting both the XG effect and the PFM effect to 50 results in 100. Or maybe I'm failing to match them where I should.
    – Michael
    Dec 30, 2012 at 10:24
  • I edited the question and added a link to the settings I've tried.
    – Michael
    Jan 2, 2013 at 12:52
  • That is a good level of detail. Hopefully someone who has experience with those MU synths can help you out. Jan 2, 2013 at 15:03

1 Answer 1


I can't help you with your exact problem, but I do have an alternate solution for you to consider: get a nice rackmount sampler and sample your XG voices, then trigger the sampled voices live. That guarantees that you will get exactly the sound that you expect. You can often pick up Akai S3000-series samplers for peanuts. They take standard SIMMs for memory expansion, and some will take an internal or external SCSI drive for storage. If you are careful, you should be able to get up and running for under $100.

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