GrandTouch-S™ keyboard with wooden keys
Yamaha’s latest keyboard action features a broad dynamic range and faithful response to every nuance of touch that puts a wide expanse of tone—from delicate to bold—at the pianist’s fingertips. The highly consistent grand piano hammers replicate the pleasing response felt when the hammers strike the strings, enabling precise control of the tone. Highly absorbent synthetic-ivory white keys and synthetic-ebony black keys prevent slipping even during extended play and feel just like those of a grand piano.
GrandTouch-S keyboard of the CLP-745 features wooden keys that showcase Yamaha’s expertise with wood for pianos. Just as with grand piano keyboards, the solid wood is cut from the very best parts of well-dried lumber, making the keys more resistant to warping than keyboards made of laminated wood. The wooden texture and structure of the keys create a more grand piano-like feel.
Escapement mechanism of Clavinova keyboards
The escapement mechanism in a grand piano moves the hammers away from the strings quickly after they strike them, in order to prevent any interference with string vibration. This mechanism produces a slight clicking sensation when the keys are pressed gently.
The Clavinova keyboards feature an escapement mechanism that reproduces this sensation near the bottom of the key dip. They have been designed in such a way that the click is discernible only on the lightest keystrokes, similar to the keyboard of a grand piano. These keyboards have been adjusted to provide additional friction that balances key repetition and response without impeding performance.
Touch sensor control panel
The touch panel only displays text when it is on—when the panel is off, it has the smooth finish of a keyblock.
Grand Expression Modeling
The interaction and interplay of the hammers, dampers, and strings inside a grand piano respond to the subtlest nuances of the pianist’s touch, creating a limitless range of tonal expression. Touch refers to the pianist’s control, not only of intensity (softness/loudness) in playing and releasing the keys, but also of the speed and depth with which the keys are pressed. The Grand Expression Modeling introduced in the CLP-700 Series translates the widely varied input from the pianist’s fingers into the same limitless tonal variation of a grand piano.
This makes it possible to vary the output by playing the keys to different depths and with different speeds, even when using techniques such as trills or legato or emphasizing the melody over the accompaniment. Grand Expression Modeling excels at faithfully reproducing the output expected of these techniques in many well-known songs. In Debussy’s “Clair de Lune,” a loose touch creates the faint tone that makes the melody stand out more crisply. In Liszt’s “Un Sospiro,” the accompanying arpeggios accent the melody without overwhelming it, and varied expression of the melody gives it the same quality as vocals. In the last of the Chopin nocturnes, trills, legato, and other delicate techniques where fingers seem to float over the keys deliver the airy, smooth tonal expression required. Playing such pieces on a highly expressive piano helps the pianist learn various techniques and experience the same joy of expression as a painter, but through sound.
Newly sampled Yamaha CFX and Bösendorfer Imperial voices
Clavinova grand piano sounds are recorded from several world-renowned concert grand pianos. One of them is the CFX, Yamaha’s top-flight concert grand piano. Pianists around the world are enamored with the impressive, dazzling, richly expressive sound of the CFX in concert halls. Another sampled concert grand is the Imperial, the flagship model of Bösendorfer, a time-honored Viennese piano brand with an ardent following. The Imperial is known for its abundance of color and natural, warm feeling. Yamaha faithfully reproduces the idiosyncrasies of these concert grand pianos by carefully recording the entire tonal range of each of the 88 keys, making minute adjustments to capture the most harmonious tones each piano has to offer.
Virtual Resonance Modeling
One of the allures of the grand piano is the sympathetic resonance created by the vibration of the entire instrument. Clavinova pianos elaborately reproduce this rich sympathetic resonance through a groundbreaking technology called Virtual Resonance Modeling (VRM). VRM creates a richly varied sound by simulating the complex sympathetic tones created when the vibrations of the strings are propagated to the soundboard and other strings, corresponding to the timing and intensity of key playing and pedaling. CLP-700 Series pianos even replicate the sounds the dampers make when they are raised off the strings, in addition to the resonance of the duplex scaling, strings, soundboard, and case. Clavinova pianos allow you to enjoy the same momentary dynamics and deep sympathetic sounds that are produced by the entire body of a grand piano.
Binaural sampling is a method of sampling in which special microphones are placed on a mannequin’s head in the same positions as the pianist’s ears to capture piano sounds the way that they sound in reality.
We chose this method to create the ambience and full, natural resonance of acoustic pianos in Clavinova pianos. This makes pianists feel as though they are sitting at a grand piano even when they play with headphones on. The experience is so pleasant that they forget they are wearing headphones, no matter how long they continue to play.
On CLP-700 Series pianos, binaural sampling was used for the Bösendorfer Imperial as well as the Yamaha CFX. Yamaha achieves higher-definition binaural sound with a specially developed mannequin head and model ears used for the recording.
We also developed the Stereophonic Optimizer function to achieve the same effect for the piano effects. Stereophonic Optimizer technology replicates the natural diffusion of sound in headphones nearly as closely as binaural sampling for the piano voices other than the CFX and Imperial.