NAMM 2019: Yamaha says that it’s revolutionised the stage piano with its new CP models

NAMM 2019: Yamaha is making a serious pitch for your stage piano pound with the new CP73 and CP88 models. Said to represent a “radical reinvention”, these offer the company’s premier sounds and feature a reimagined user interface.

The new CPs have been designed from the ground up for working keyboard players and contain three main sonic sections: Piano, Electric Piano and Sub. You can split or combine these as you so wish.

The Piano section includes sampled representations of the Yamaha CFX and Bösendorfer Imperial concert grands, Yamaha U1 upright and the classic CP80 electric grand, with selectable damper resonance aiding realism. Electric pianists can enjoy emulations of all the standard vintage keyboards, and these can be beefed up with stompbox-style effects.

The Sub section covers strings, pads, organs, chromatic percussion and other voices, with the effects including a rotary speaker emulation.

The user interface has been designed to eliminate deep menu diving, with your preferred setups being saveable as quick-access Live Sets. Real-time controls enable you to make tweaks on the fly, while Advanced Mode covers splitting and layering of voices. The Seamless Sound Switching feature means that sustained notes will continue to sound even when you’re changing patch, and there’s a comprehensive master effects section.

You can share and download more sounds via the Soundmondo online service - there’s internal Flash memory - and Yamaha promises to offer more sounds in the future via OS updates.

Both models have hammer-action keyboards, with the CP88 going further by offering Yamaha’s Natural Wood, triple-sensor action and synthetic ebony and ivory key tops. The CPs have aluminium cases, while both 1/4-inch and XLR outputs are provided. Additionally, there are left and right 1/4-inch inputs with a gain control, enabling you to run a second keyboard through the main outputs without the need for a mixer.

Priced at $2,499 and $3,199 respectively, the CP73 and CP88 will be shipping from 24 January, the first day of the NAMM Show.


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Ben Rogerson
Deputy Editor

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it.