Clavinova – An Overview

The Clavinova which was originally developed by the Yamaha Corporation, is a model of digital piano. Similar to acoustic pianos, clavinovas come with many features common to the digital piano. For example, they have the ability to save and load songs as well as being able to access different voices.  Some of the recent models can connect to a computer via a USB cable or even a wireless network.

Two of the more popular clavinova series are the CLP and CVP models.  These provide a digital alternative to the acoustic style pianos.  The CLP reproduces quite accurately the touch and sound of the acoustic piano while offering other voices in a limited number.  The CVP series offers a wider variety of voices while adding built-in rhythms as well as accompaniments for a more complete performance.

Clavinova Technical information

Some Clavinovas (in particular the CLP and CVP-Series) feature graded hammer technology. This technology is simply a mechanical system of small metal hammers.  The hammers are weighted to be similar to those of a real pianoforte.  The real ones hit a digital pressure sensor which is then translated into sound. By implementing this technology the clavinova has enjoyed much success as an affordable substitute for acoustic pianos. The ‘Graded’ action in these series tends to reproduce more accurately the varying weights of the hammers of an acoustic piano. The newer models of Clavinovas, incorporate real wood keys for added realism. This is a trait of models such as the CVP-407

The built-in synthesizer contains many samples of real instruments and produces the sounds of these while using electronics to modify those sounds. Information is supplied via a MIDI or similar format.  It comes either directly from the piano keyboard or from a stored source within the piano.  It can also be provided by a computer or external sequencer. The synthesizer can imitate acoustic instruments, electronic instruments and other unique sound effects. The newer more recent CVP Clavinova contains hundreds of such voices. These usually include many types of stringed instruments, organs, pianos, percussion, woodwind and brass instruments. And that’s not to mention available effects.

Pricing of a clavinova can range to as high as $12,000.00USD.

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