The dosage effect of Y-chromosome heterochromatin on suppression of position effect variegation (PEV) has long been well-known in Drosophila. The phenotypic effects of increasing the overall dosage of Y heterochromatin have also been demonstrated; hyperploidy of the Y chromosome produces male sterility and many somatic defects including variegation and abnormal legs and wings. This work addresses whether the suppression of position effect variegation (PEV) is a general feature of the heterochromatin (independent of the chromosome of origin) and whether a hyperdosage of heterochromatin can affect viability. The results show that the suppression of PEV is a general feature of any type of constitutive heterochromatin and that the intensity of suppression depends on its amount instead of some mappable factor on it. We also describe a clear dosage effect of Y heterochromatin on the viability of otherwise wild-type embryos and the modification of that effect by a specific gene mutation. Together, our results indicate that the correct balance between heterochromatin and euchromatin is essential for the normal genome expression and that this balance is genetically controlled.