Puzzle Brand Comparison — Clementoni

This page is part of our Puzzle Brand Comparison. You can find the overview page here.

SUMMARY:   56/70

Clementoni is an Italian puzzle brand with good quality. They have sturdy boxes and fairly thick pieces with a linen finish. Their piece cut and image selection is a bit on the conventional side. They carry mostly fine art, wildlife, and photographic puzzles with a few nice fantasy and collage images. If you like their images you can buy with confidence as the quality is quite acceptable.

The puzzle we reviewed for this brand comparison is “Egyptian Triptych” by Ciro Marchetti, 1000 piece panorama.

1. BOX  — 7/10

How deluxe does the box looks and feel? Is it sturdy? Will it hold up over time?  How nicely does it arrange on the shelf?

It appears that all of their adult puzzles carry this “High Quality Collection” label, which is the sort of advertising I don’t really get, like slapping a “Nice Person” label on your forehead. If it’s true you don’t need it, and one half suspects it’s not true because why shout about it otherwise? So… I’m not crazy about that branding choice taking up so much of the box front.  Why not “Fantasy Collection” or something actually meaningful? Otherwise the box is sturdy and has a high resolution print of the puzzle. The size is rectangular, 11″ x1 4″, similar to most European brand boxes.

Front:

clemontini-1

Back:

The back has a generic message about the company. I love it when puzzle companies tell me more about the artist and Clementoni does not — there’s a tiny copyright type credit on the box and that’s it. You also can’t learn the artist’s name on their website. To me the artist is a collectible identifier, like an author’s name, and I like to learn more about them (note to Clementoni!).

clemontini-2

Side:

All four sides have the puzzle image, Clementoni logo, the genre (Fantasy–I like having the genre labelled), and piece size for easy reference. Thus you can stack your collection however you like.  The name of the puzzle is only printed small on one side.

clemontini-3

 

2. INSIDE THE BOX  — 7/10

How deluxe are the internal goodies (such as posters or brochures)?  When you remove the pieces is there puzzle dust, pieces stuck together, hanging chads, and places where the image has begun to separate from the backs?

The box contains only the bag of pieces and a guarantee card.

Clemontini_1

The puzzle comes in a thick plastic bag. Puzzle dust is low. The pieces are fully separated and there are no hanging chads or trouble with the image lifting off corners.

Clemontini_2

3. PIECE THICKNESS — 9/10

How thick are the pieces compared to other brands? How does a piece feel in your hand? How easily are pieces damaged or bent during assembly and separation?

As you can see below, Clementoni pieces are just slightly thinner than Ravensburger. The pieces definitely feel ‘thick enough’ as you are working the puzzle, and there were no issues with warping, bending, image peel, etc.

clementoni

 

4.  PIECE SIZE & SHAPE — 8/10

Are the pieces standard shapes? Special shapes? How much variety do they have? Are they large or small?

Clementoni pieces are a bit smaller than average, similar to Heye in the picture below (lower right).

comparison-1

Their piece cut is standard grid. It’s a fairly conventional cut but does has a good variety of piece shapes, not all just two-knob, two-hole.

Clemontini_egyptiantriptych_CU2_SM

 

5. PIECE FIT– 8/10

Do pieces interlock well? Can it be confusing if a piece fits or not?  Can you move groups of pieces together? Does it look snug when it’s done?

The piece fit is good. I never had any confusion over whether a piece fit or not. The end result is not as seamless as Jumbo or Schmidt. The fit is not tight enough to be able to lift a puzzle corner without glue. You can move a small group of attached pieces while working on the puzzle, but only with care. (for very tight puzzle fits, see our pages on Springbok and Sunsout).

Clemontini_egyptiantriptych_main_SM

Above: Egyptian Triptych. Click for close-up. Photo takes in 3 shots due to length.

 

6. IMAGE REPRODUCTION — 10/10

Are the colors bright and vivid? Is the image sharp or feel like a bad Xerox? How is the finish/texture on the pieces?

The finish on the Clementoni pieces is a linen-type matte, which means no glare and the pieces feel good to handle. See the detail below (click for close-up). The colors are quite good and the lines are crisp where they should be (as in the leaves in the image below).

Clemontini_egyptiantriptych_CU1_SM

7.  IMAGE VARIETY & ARTISTS — 7/10

Does the brand have a wide variety of fun images and good artists?

clemontini_3in1

Above: “Majestic Stallion”, “HQC Capri”, “Silent Whisper (detail, full is panorama)” (click for closer view)

Clementoni has what I’d consider a very standard sort of catalogue offering–lots of photographic scenic puzzles, fine art, wildlife, puppies and kittens, and licensed images. They carry a few nice fantasy puzzles and collages. They also have some very large puzzles–3000, 6000, and 13200 pieces! There probably is not much in their catalogue that you can’t find much closer to home (if you live in the US or UK anyway), though Clementoni is carried by US distributors (see Ace Puzzles and Serious Puzzles).

See their website with their full line-up here.

SUMMARY:   56/70

Clementoni is an Italian puzzle brand with good quality. They have sturdy boxes and fairly thick pieces with a linen finish. Their piece cut and image selection is a bit on the conventional side. They carry mostly fine art, wildlife, and photographic puzzles with a few nice fantasy and collage images. If you like their images you can buy with confidence as the quality is quite acceptable.

JJ

 

9 responses to Puzzle Brand Comparison — Clementoni

  1. Joseph Giovanni says:

    I have puzzle # 31904 piazza di spagna. There is quite few pieces missing.

  2. Shahad says:

    I have a Clementoni Neuschwanstein Puzzle (1500-Piece), the image quality wasn’t good. The print was blurry, I couldn’t rely on the color variance cause the image I chose had the same color scheme, nor could I rely on the fit cause it wasn’t that solid. I couldn’t really tell if I was solving it correctly or not.

  3. Gus says:

    The High Quality is referring to the ‘range’ rather than stating the obvious. I take your point though, it is like advertising that you sell ‘fresh bread’. 🙂 Do people think that some shops sell stale bread? Anyway, now you know 🙂 I love Clementoni puzzles, though the one I am working on now is 10 years old, so maybe in that time the quality dropped? I’m about to find out because I bought a 6k Clementoni to do next.

  4. Billsville Mike says:

    From my experience Clementoni is the tightest fitting puzzle brand out there (with the exception of Springbok, which is to me really a different type of puzzle altogether), even tighter than Ravensburger. In fact, some puzzlers find Clementoni’s fit to be a little too tight, making it difficult to take apart the puzzle after completion without extra care not to damage the pieces. The pieces in your 1000 panoramic seem to be a slightly different cut style than the larger ones I’ve worked (the knobs seem a little more squarish and the ones I’ve seen more bulbous), so that may be the difference.

    Their printing quality is excellent, in my opinion just as good as Ravensburger. Back in the 90s and early 00s they produced a lot of Italian Renaissance puzzles with astonishing quality, but sadly have abandoned this focus in their product line.

  5. Gus says:

    Yup, have to agree with Birdsville Mike. I have always found Clementoni to be the best of all of the ones I have tried, fit wise. I can pick up my 4000 piece Clementoni puzzle, no glue, no nothing, which is why I am astonished about the comments of fit being related to ‘being able to move small groups of pieces’. 4k pieces is a pretty decent group 🙂 In contrast, the Educa I am doing now often falls to bits if I knock it. lol, talk about chalk and cheese. The annoying thing is, that I think that Educa has the best range of pics. Since I never pull these big puzzles apart, there is no negative side to the tight fit.

    • Thanks for adding that information regarding Clementoni and tightness. When I review a single puzzle for the brand comparison, it’s difficult to know if it’s a true representation of the brand. It’s always good to get more feedback from other puzzlers. I appreciate the comments.

  6. Gus says:

    No probs, when n=1, anything can happen. I am curious to see if the current Clementonis are up to what the older ones used to be. All I have to do to see, is finish this pesky Educa 🙂

  7. Paulo says:

    The “Museum Collection” is excellent! It has a more attractive box (in my opinion) and comes with information about the artist inside. Just finished Botticelli’s “The Birth of Venus”.

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