With the Yamaha CLP735 and Yamaha CLP745 being the first of the highly anticipated CLP700 series from Yamaha, released Autumn 2020, people are eager to know what the differences are between the new models.
Yamaha no longer starts their CLP series with a CLPx25 – they’ve jumped straight to ‘735’, as the Arius models like the YDP164 and the YDPS54 were very similar to the CLP625 from the preceding CLP600 range.
So – the Yamaha CLP735 is still a digital piano; you’ve got a nice speaker system, you’ve got 88 keys, you’ve got page holders to hold your pages open, and you’ve got a hook for your headphones. The CLP735 has 38 voices to choose from and it includes some new voices – the new samples of the Yamaha CFX Grand and also the Bosendorfer Imperial.
You also have some sounds really suitable for playing Chopin and Mozart, some older piano samples from original instruments, you’ve got a drum feature of rhythms that you can play along with 20 different drum patterns, you’ve also got bass lines that will automatically play along with the chords that you’re playing and you’ve got a metronome feature.
The CLP735 has plastic keys and the specification on this model is almost identical to the Baby Grand version; the CLP765GP.
When we move up to the next model, the Yamaha CLP745, we are going to have all of the same features again, but with a few additions. With the CLP745, we’re going to get wooden keys. This is the first big difference.
The wooden keys make the CLP745 a lot more tactile and a nicer instrument to play. You also get built-in Bluetooth MIDI too. On this model we’ve got two pairs of 50 watt speakers, we’ve got the wooden keys, and we’ve got the bluetooth. These features make a huge difference. Yamaha have put metal page holders on the piano now, rather than the plastic ones that were on the lower models. You have still got your headphone hook under the piano too.
Size & Key Action
Physically, they stand at almost exactly the same size, with the CLP745 just slightly topping the CLP735’s height by about 15mm. So what’s the difference?
With both models residing at the more affordable end of the Yamaha Clavinova CLP700 series, they do share a few similarities.
For example, in terms of their keyboards, both use Yamaha’s new GrandTouch-S system, which offers an authentic playing experience by differing the lengths between the black and white keys, like on a traditional grand piano.
A major difference between the two models is the use of real wooden keys used on the CLP745, as opposed to the polymer keys on the CLP735. This adds to the playing experience and authenticity of the ‘key action’, as wooden keys are used in acoustic grand pianos, as such providing the feel you would experience with an acoustic piano.
The primary difference between the two models however is the speaker system. The Yamaha CLP 735 uses a stereo system with two 16cm (6 inch) speaker drivers, with 60 watts of power. By contrast, the CLP745 incorporates a more capable 2-way stereo system, with two 16cm (6 inch) woofer drivers and two 8cm (3 inch) full-range drivers, with 200 watts of power
This upgraded speaker system in the CLP745 results in a far richer, fuller sound, in contrast with the CLP735 which can sound quite ‘boxy’ in comparison. The final feature seen in the CLP745 but not in the CLP735 is the ability to connect the piano via Bluetooth to your smart device, allowing you to wirelessly play music through the speaker system on the CLP745, or transmit MIDI data.
Both the Yamaha CLP735 and CLP745 can be used in conjunction with the superb Yamaha ‘Smart Pianist’ app, allowing you to access the features of the instrument in a more tactile and visual way.
With native Bluetooth, the Yamaha CLP745 requires no adapters or cables to facilitate connection to a compatible iOS or Android device, whereas the CLP735 will require the optional Yamaha UDWL01 adapter to achieve connection.
Among many features, Smart Pianist is able to convert songs from your iTunes library into a visual chord display, giving you an easy way to accompany your favourite music. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can even delve into an array of lesson pieces built into the Smart Pianist app, complete with finger-twistingly challenging dexterity tests and fingering exercises!
Essentially, whilst not technically adding a great deal more ‘content’ to the Clavinova, the integration of the Yamaha Smart Pianist app with the Yamaha CLP700 series expands upon the options for the enjoyment of the instrument, whilst offering some really practical features and benefits.
Overall, the Yamaha CLP745 is the superior piano and likely to have more longevity than the CLP735.
What you save in the reduced price for the CLP735 is somewhat equivocal when you consider the better sound, superior wooden keys and, not to forget, the built-in Bluetooth connectivity available in the next model up.
The wireless Yamaha Bluetooth adapter alone is (in the region of) £70-80, which isn’t pocket change, and the benefit of a seamless transition from the 745’s wooden white keys and NWX key action to a ‘traditional’ piano action (which is often an inevitability) is priceless.
|Yamaha CLP735||Yamaha CLP745|
|30W x 2 Amplifiers||50W + 50W x 2 Amplifiers|
|16 cm x 2 Speakers||(16 cm + 8 cm) x 2 Speakers|
|Synthetic Key Materials||Wooden White Keys|