Dielectric dispersion and Raman studies are carried out on the solid solution series (BaxPb1-x)(Yb0.5Nb 0.5)O3 from x = 0.0 to 0.3. The x-ray diffraction analysis indicates that with the substitution of Ba2+, the intensity of the peaks corresponding to antiparallel displacement of Pb2+ decreases and the structure becomes cubic. The low frequency dielectric dispersion studies indicate that the series undergoes a transition from an antiferroelectric to a relaxor ferroelectric with variation of x. Raman spectra of the compositions indicate the presence of a greater number of modes for the compounds with cubic structure (x ≥ 0.2). A new mode at 420 cm-1 is observed for the compounds with Ba2+ substitution. The intensity of this mode increases monotonically with increase in Ba2+ substitution and this has been attributed to the commencement of local distortion. This could be responsible for the appearance and increase in the diffuseness around Tmax, the temperature corresponding to ε′r,max.