Quick Guide: Upgrade E3 / DKC-800 Piano Unit to DKC-850

Kevin Busse Feb 09, 2024
178 People Read
Yamaha Grand Piano DKC-850 Control Unit Upgrade

How do you convert an E3 (DKC-800) to a DKC-850?

It’s only a matter of flipping DIP switches.

What’s needed to convert an E3 to a DKC-850?

  • You’ll need a 12V DC adapter

  • You’ll also need a DKC-850 converter cable and converter board connecter unless you plan to use as a midi player add-on

  • You’ll have to switch the unit over to DKC-850 mode via dip switches inside the control unit, so long as it is not too old!

  • If it is old and does not include the dip switches, it is still valuable because you can use it as an addition to the existing control unit.

  • You’ll also have to set the unit to Replace or Add, depending on whether you've sourced a converter cable and converter board connector.

*Check that the necessary dip switches are present on the inside of the system before you buy with the intention of converting it to a DKC-850. Controllers that are too old don't have the switches.

Opening the Controller Box to flip "Dip Switches"

A DKC-800 and DKC-850 are identical except that when they are booted up, the display will say "E3" or the Yamaha logo.

Once you've removed the outside sheet metal casing of the DKC-800:

  • Move the CD player aside

  • If Dip switch #1 is switched to the left, it makes it a DKC-850

  • If Dip switch #1 is switched to the right, it makes it an E3 / DKC-800

There are a lot of E3 / DKC-800's out there, which can be updated to the DKC-900 which is called the "Enspire" (The latest and greatest).

However, this does not mean that the DKC-850 isn't wonderful, because it really, really is.

Flipping Dip Switches for E3 / DKC-800 conversion to DKC-850

Another example of a DKC-800 circuit boards opened up for examination:

Flipping the proper dip switches is what matters.

*If it's a really old E3 / DKC-800 controller unit, you will NOT find that those dip switches exist.

However, if the system is newer, then after switching the dip switches, it will work automatically.

In the video above, inscription on the circuit board tells which dip switches to flip for a DKC-800 vs. DKC-850

DKC-850 Upgrade and Demonstration

Why switch from an E3 (DKC-800) to a DKC-850?

  • Disklavier Radio is available for otherwise obsolete controllers

This power adaptor has the 12V DC adapter tip that will work for the E3 / DKC-800 controller box.

PianoType: "Replace" or "Add-On"

This video shows you how to change the piano type:

Press on the Remote Control:

  • System

  • Select PianoType

  • Select "Replace" or "Add-on"

  • System will restart


*Remember: If you are using the original control unit, the PianoType should be "Add-on." If you have the converter cable and converter board connecter, then you should select "Replace."

This will also work on a MK ll Disklavier if you have the 9-15 pin adapter.

It's amazing how you can even get Disklavier Radio on that piano!

"Inconceivable!" - Richie Hayes

DKC-850 Upgrade from a DKC100R


The video above demonstrates the very first publicly known time when a DKC100R was upgraded to a DKC-850 where an otherwise obsolete controller is able to play Disklavier Radio.

MK II upgrade to a DKC-850

Above is another example of a DKC100R (MKII) upgraded to a DKC-850.

This video shows the circuit board that Richie Hayes created with the 9 pin adapter on one side, and a 15 pin male adapter on the other.

This video demonstrates how to use the converter board so that an E3 / DKC-800 converted to an DKC-850 can "Replace" any old Disklavier system.

This converter board allows old systems to be completely removed.

Richie Hayes figured it all out! Email Richie and say a quick Thank you!


How to Subscribe to Disklavier Radio / Yamaha Piano Stations

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How to Update Software for Yamaha Disklavier E3/DKC-850