History of Yamaha Logotype

In 1898, one year after the establishment of Nippon Gakki Co., Ltd., forerunner of today's Yamaha Corporation, the Company decided to use a tuning fork as the corporate mark, and a design featuring a “Chinese phoenix holding a tuning fork in its mouth” as the trademark. After undergoing a variety of changes paralleling the growth of the Company, the tuning fork mark and the Yamaha logo was finally standardized in 1966.

A tuning fork is a tool for tuning musical instruments. It was invented by a trumpet player named John Shore (1662-1751). The tuning fork is composed of a handle attached to the center of a U-shaped steel rod. By striking the rod, sound is created, and the frequency of the resulting vibrations per second is used as a standard for tuning a musical instrument. The three tuning forks of the Yamaha logo mark represent the cooperative relationship that links the three pillars of our business -- technology, production, and sales. They also evoke the robust vitality that has forged our reputation for sound and music the world over, a territory signified by the enclosing circle. The mark also symbolizes the three essential musical elements: melody, harmony, and rhythm.

[ Image ] "Ho-oh" (Chinese phoenix) holding a tuning fork in its mouth

1898

This is the design with a "Ho-oh" (Chinese phoenix) holding a tuning fork in its mouth, which was established as the trademark in 1898, one year after Nippon Gakki Co., Ltd. was established.
The mark was known for being used on top quality organs, which illustrates how the Founder always aimed to create world-class products.

[ Image ] A trademark application was submitted for this tuning fork used on organs.

1916

A trademark application was submitted for this tuning fork used on organs.

[ Image ] A trademark application was submitted for this tuning fork used on pianos.

1916

A trademark application was submitted for this tuning fork used on pianos.

[ Image ] A trademark application for tuning forks alone.

1916

A trademark application for tuning forks alone.

[ Image ] A trademark application was submitted for this tuning fork and Yamaha Veneer mark.

1927

A trademark application was submitted for this tuning fork and Yamaha Veneer mark.

[ Image ] A design widely used in products, newspaper, advertising and catalogs.

1934

A design widely used in products, newspaper, advertising and catalogs.

[ Image ] A trademark application was submitted to be used on musical instruments.

1956

A trademark application was submitted to be used on musical instruments.

[ Image ] A trademark application was submitted to be used on musical instruments.

1959

A trademark application was submitted to be used on musical instruments.

[ Image ] The current standard and special versions of the tuning fork marks were established.

1998

The current standard and special versions of the tuning fork marks were established.

[ Image ] A mark similar to the current special version of the logo was also used as a 'reverse design'.

1966

The Yamaha logotype was established. (A mark similar to the current special version of the logo was also used as a 'reverse design'.)

[ Image ] A design using simple lines (the current special version of the logo) was established as the standard version of the logo.

1980

The Yamaha logotype was revised. A design using simple lines (the current special version of the logo) was established as the standard version of the logo.

[ Image ] A design using simple lines (the current special version of the logo) was established as the standard version of the logo.

1987

The Yamaha logotype was revised. A design using simple lines (the current special version of the logo) was established as the standard version of the logo.

[ Image ] The current standard version of the Yamaha logotype (upper line) and special version (bottom line) were established.

1998

The current standard version of the Yamaha logotype (upper line) and special version (bottom line) were established.

The biggest difference is that logo of Yamaha Corporation is colored in violet, its corporate color, while that Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd, its sister company, uses red.

Yamaha Corporation uses a Yamaha Logomark with the tips of the tuning forks contained within a circle, and features "YAMAHA" printed in an asymmetric font, with an "M" with a middle column shorter than the outer legs, while that of Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd has the tips of the tuning forks in Yamaha Logomark extended outside a circle, and uses symmetrical font, with an "M" of all the legs same size.

[ Image ] Yamaha Corporation

Yamaha Corporation

[ Image ] Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd.

Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd.