#1
my son is 6 going on 7, and has got a borrowed acoustic at the moment. I'm helping him with his practice (and also playing a bit myself). His teacher has recommended he buy a Yamaha Pacifica 112V.

I really don't know anything about guitars (well, I know a tiny bit more than I did, but I couldn't say anything about what would make one guitar different from the other), and while I could just buy this, which will cost £155, I'd like to be a bit more informed about my decision.

I had a look on the Yamaha website, they list six series:

Pacifica
Signature (EG)
AES
Hollow Body
RGXA2
SG

The SG is listed as 'no compromise', and is very expensive and clearly unsuitable.

The RGXA2 says it's very light, which seems like it might be good for a child. I've obviously no idea about anything else.

Hollow Body is clearly a bit of a niche, and Signature again is super high end.

The AES says 'The AES series is Yamaha's take on the classic single cutaway, dual-humbucker theme. With their uniquely carved tops, trademark tone-enhancingtailpiece design, upgraded bridge, and brawny "C" profile necks, the AES guitars have become the instrument of choice for today's generation of visionary guitarists. '

which is all Greek to me, but they start at relatively affordable prices.

And finally the Pacifica. Now given that this is the one recommended to me, I thought I'd look a bit closer.

They have

012
112J, 112V, 112VCX, 112XJ, 112XJM
120SJ
412V
612V
812V
904

I would assume that these are in ascending order of quality, but again I'm not qualified to say.

A comparison of the Yamaha specs on the 412V and 112V for example, shows no differences at all, so what makes the 412V more expensive/better? (And what's the 120SJ?)

And when it comes to the five 112 models, it seems the V and VCX use 'Alnico V' pickups, and the others don't. Is this a big deal? And the V and VCX mention a bolt-on neck, this seems like an avantage for durability for a guitar getting bashed around going to school. A google search suggests that the

112V and 112J are the core models, the VCX is just a cosmetic change, and the XJ and XJM look like variations on the J with M standing for Maple finger board.

The V is about £30 more than the XJ, is it worth the extra money?

And finally, the 012 is a £20 cheaper again. A quick Google search shows that 'Agathis or Nato' are two low-quality woods, and the alder used on the 112 series is much better.

So that leaves me looking at one of the 112 models. Have I got it right? Are the 112V and 112VCX just cosmetically different? And what's the difference between:

The J Natural Satin
http://uk.yamaha.com/en/products/musical_instruments/guitars_basses/el_guitars/pacifica112j_yellow_natural_satin/?mode=specs

and the

XJ Natural Satin
http://uk.yamaha.com/en/products/musical_instruments/guitars_basses/el_guitars/pacifica112xj_yellow_natural_satin/?mode=specs

I assume there is very little to choose between XJ and XJM - maple or rosewood fingerboards.

And finally what difference would trading up to the 412V make?
#2
ive played the RGAX2 and yes, it is VERY light, because I think its almost like the 2 pieces of wood are sandwiching air in the middle, which is why yamaha named the thing AIR.

Its seemed like a pretty good guitar, but I think it is pretty expensive for a 7 year old, who id assume is a beginner or close to.
#3
Quote by Tedward
ive played the RGAX2 and yes, it is VERY light, because I think its almost like the 2 pieces of wood are sandwiching air in the middle, which is why yamaha named the thing AIR.

Its seemed like a pretty good guitar, but I think it is pretty expensive for a 7 year old, who id assume is a beginner or close to.


They obviously didn't name it very well.

The first time I typed it I typed 'RXGA2', you've put 'RGAX2', and it is in fact the RGX A2.
#4
as far as starters go, yamaha is one of the #1 brands.

usually around 2 hundred, and available in an easy to hold strat style, light wood and versatile HSS pickup configuration.

get Maple or rosewood. natural or painted.

in the lower end models there is little to no difference.

keep the bridge tight, use the trem very little if at all, and make sure you get him a microcube or similar amp, as that's where he'll be getting most of his tone.


here's a natural Maple board 112M i pickup up used for $50.



edit: oh and it's still too big for my tall 6 1/2 yr old niece, but 3/4 guitars are usually impossible to keep in tune.
Jenneh

Quote by TNfootballfan62
Jenny needs to sow her wild oats with random Gibsons and Taylors she picks up in bars before she settles down with a PRS.


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Last edited by jj1565 at Mar 11, 2009,
#5
i think you're on the right track with the 112. i've been very impressed with the ones i've tried. very versatile, and good enough to be worth of upgrades (pickups etc.) later.

i *think* the v model is a newer model, which has a push-pull coil split on the tone control, and a cooler shape of pickguard (). whether that's worth another £30 is up to you, really. it *might* be a little more sought-after if you ever decide to sell it on, but buying something because it has better resale is always a risk, because just because it has higher resale value now, doesn't mean it will have higher resale value when you decide to sell.

if your son wants the maple fretboard, then i don't think you can go with the V, i think it's only available with a rosewood fretboard.

alnico in the pickups is probably an advantage, yeah. it's generally a little sweeter-sounding, unless you want to play really heavy metal. from what i can remember, the stock pickups in the V version are pretty nice, for the money.

i haven't tried the 412, or the 612, unfortunately. the 812V is a big step up, but it's about 3 times as expensive.

the aes series might be a bit heavy for a young child. and the upper fret access isn't going to be the best. and it might have a thickish neck profile, too. the yamaha site seems to be a bit throughother at the moment, so it's a bit hard finding info on all the models...

i don't think you'll go too far wrong with any of the 112s, basically... nice guitars, especially for the money, extremely versatile (both humbuckers and single coils for a range of tones from light to heavy), bomb-proof (well, near enough) bolt-on construction, etc. etc.

what are you thinking of for the amp? i agree with jj1565/jenny, the microcube is remarkably good and remarkably cheap.

excellent work on your research, by the way, there were a lot of questions which we didn't need to answer because you did excellent research (e.g. the woods thing, you're right, generally alder is considered far superior to agathis).
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#6
Quote by Dave_Mc
i think you're on the right track with the 112. i've been very impressed with the ones i've tried. very versatile, and good enough to be worth of upgrades (pickups etc.) later.

i *think* the v model is a newer model, which has a push-pull coil split on the tone control, and a cooler shape of pickguard (). whether that's worth another £30 is up to you, really. it *might* be a little more sought-after if you ever decide to sell it on, but buying something because it has better resale is always a risk, because just because it has higher resale value now, doesn't mean it will have higher resale value when you decide to sell.


I called the company selling the older 112 and he said that was it. Basically the 112V is just updated a little. He mentioned the pickguard

The older model is worth buying for less money - but they had sold out.
#7
Yamaha's have always been good to me.

I've had my Yamaha Pacifica EG112 for a good 10 years now and still use it as a backup from time to time. My first guitar ever was my uncle's old F320 acoustic, and it's still in the family as my sister has it. (I bought an A&L 2 years ago to replace it). Probably the best quality and component guitars for their cost and pricepoints, especially the 112J series pacifica's made of alder with the option of maple or rosewood fretboards and a humbucker/single/single configuration.

I recommend them to first time buyers at my store all the time, though recently some of the vintage squiers and epiphone standards are closing the gap or exceeding it in terms of components and quality compared to pricing. Yamaha Canada also just raised prices, which I imagine will make taht gap almost non-existent on our next order. Though for a strat style, a mexi std will now cost you about $549 CDN, and the Pacificas we have ranging from $259-$329 each depending on the woods/pickups (the new 112V's w/coil taps and higher grade al-nico's in them are really worth the extra $70).

Hope this helps
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#8
Quote by thelawnet
I called the company selling the older 112 and he said that was it. Basically the 112V is just updated a little. He mentioned the pickguard

The older model is worth buying for less money - but they had sold out.


that's a shame. but as demon dave above said, the newer model probably is worth the extra £30 or so- nicer pickups, a coil split for a few extra tonal options, and the cooler pickguard (!)... probably worth £30, for the first two, anyway.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#9
I just bought an unspecified 112 on ebay for £116 including delivery

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&item=220378224880

The 112v costs £165 inc delivery from the cheapest dealer, so I saved about £50.

I think the one above is actually a 112V as it seems to match the pictures on Yamaha's website.

Can anyone give me any pointers about what to check for (condition wise) when it arrives? Should it come with anything?
#10
make sure the bridge is level.

if it's lifted it'll be hard to keep in tune.

you want to check that there are at least 3 springs back there.

you'll need a tiny allen wrench to adjust saddle heights.
and you'll want to plug it in, check for and crackle noise, make sure the switch works.
stuff like that.
Jenneh

Quote by TNfootballfan62
Jenny needs to sow her wild oats with random Gibsons and Taylors she picks up in bars before she settles down with a PRS.


Set up Questions? ...Q & A Thread

Recognised by the Official EG/GG&A/GB&C WTLT Lists 2011
#11
I've been really impressed with the 112's by Yamaha. I've actually got an EG112 that I parted out, and I love the neck (it ended up on an old tiesco body), the pickups on the EG112 were pretty decent, not the best, though.

A friend of mine played a Pacifica 112 for a LONG time before he upgraded to a Fender, and man did that thing play and sound sweet. It wasn't the most unique or greatest instrument, but it worked well, sounded good and played beautifully.

I'd pretty much say: the Yamaha Pac112 and EG112 (do they still make that?) would be GREAT choices.
Fact: Bears eat beats. Bears beats Battlestar Galactica.
#12
A Yamaha 112V is an incredible first guitar; such a lot of quality at such a good price.
Oh, and you are the best Dad ever if you've done this much research and are this determined to give your son such a good start. As the son of a not massively musically supportive Dad I respect you for that

When the guitar arrives you ideally want to check the action (string height and neck relief) and intonation (whether the guitar is in tune at every fret). The strings should ideally be quite low to the fretboard for optimum playability but not too much so; if they are they won't ring out properly on lower frets without you putting a large bow in the neck that would impede playability. Check that the neck is straight (a very slight bow with the headstock towards the strings doesn't matter and can actually allow a lower string height without notes farting out on lower frets). If it isn't you have to adjust the truss rod; I'll admit I'm not very knowledgeable about this so I'll leave it to those who are to explain.
Exact intonation is incredibly difficult, especially on a cheap guitar. Check that the guitar is in tune played on both open strings and the 12th fret (which should be the same note as the open string but an octave higher. If it's very slightly out of tune you're fine but too much and you'll either have to spend some more cash on a professional set up or do some minor DIY)

Those are the two key points to take into consideration when buying a new guitar and as long as neither one is drastically off your son should be set (and if he complains about finding it difficult and you did these checks properly then you can rest assured it's not the instrument)
#13
yeah, that one you bought looks like one of the new ones. good luck
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#14
I've received it.

It's not the item in the photo. It's actually a 112M

It was packaged inside two sheets of thin cardboard with a single thickness of kitchen paper around the guitar. The cardboard was then wrapped in a thin black plastic bag.

It is new, but there is a minor scratch on the body.

There's also a slight rattle inside the guitar (possibly caused by the insanely bad packaging), not sure if this is a problem?

It's missing a power cable, the only things it does have is the key-like thing that goes inside the slot on the pickguard (what does this do?) and an arm that fits in the bottom of the strings (not sure what this is either).

I guess I have to send it back anyway, because I paid for a 112V but I've got a 112M.
#15
Where'd you order it from?
Fact: Bears eat beats. Bears beats Battlestar Galactica.
#16
Oh that's a shame. I was going to add my voice to the team as Yamahas are very solidly built (even the A2 which is the successor to mine) and mine's been used and gigged for over 20 years with no problems and not a mark on it. The one thing that I prefer on the RGX series is the 25" scale as against 25 1/2" of the Pacificas. That half inch makes quite a bit of difference for small hands but if its what you learn on, anything less will feel small and/or easy.
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#18
I got a reply from the seller:

Sorry you feel that way the Guitar is a Maple Yamaha 112 as sold the picture is same model as stated in the advert with a rose neck the rattle is a floating bridge for the record is worth more , the Packaging was as you chose the cheaper method of £10 rather than £20 and signed to say it was in delivered in excellent condition .
Ronnie Wood and Keith Richards both use this model so tune it up and try it l'm sure you'll want to keep it


He's obviously wrong, it's a different model, but does anyone know the specs for the 112M, how it compares with the 112V?
#19
he there ,my first electric was a yamaha erg 121, had two guitars since then and i way like this one the most. I will keep it good,keep replacing parts for as long as i can with it.
#20
Oh and, what is a floating bridge, and is it common to all of these guitars?
#21
floating bridges don't rattle... odd. Do you have a link to the auction?

edit: from what I can tell: the difference between the two guitars is the shape of the pickguard. And Keith Richards never played a yamaha.
Fact: Bears eat beats. Bears beats Battlestar Galactica.
Last edited by Thomme at Mar 23, 2009,
#23
The rattle may just be the springs which are attached to the back of the bridge.
...Bleep Bloop...
#24
grrr, sorry to hear that. he did say in the advert "maple", but he should really have made it a lot clearer. i love how when businesses use dubious descriptions, they then try to blame the customer. he had a pic of the wrong guitar- at very least he should have had, in his listing, "warning, the pic is not of the actual guitar".

do you have any pics of the two items which you aren't sure of?

rattle can be several things... jenny/jj1565 is better at working these kind of things out than i am.

EDIT: what he said about the floating bridge's costing more is bollocks, any of those strat-style trems can be set up to float.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#25
My son's guitar teacher took one look and said 'You've been ripped off'. The guitar pickup switch is not installed (separately loose) and it is not working.

It doesn't slot back in, I guess a screwdriver is required.

It's also not working
#26
Quote by thelawnet
key-like thing that goes inside the slot on the pickguard (what does this do?)

and an arm that fits in the bottom of the strings (not sure what this is either).

Probably already answered, but:

That adjusts the neck I believe. I might be wrong though.

That is the tremolo arm, a.k.a. whammy bar. Screw it in, although it seems the guitar you got is a rip-off.
#27
Quote by Alex Vik
Probably already answered, but:

That adjusts the neck I believe. I might be wrong though.


On this picture:
http://www.tarask.fr/vente/Guitare%202.jpg

it is the white switch in the slot between the tone and volume knobs.

Except on my guitar it has been removed. But I am told it doesn't just remove, so not sure what has happened.
#28
Quote by thelawnet
On this picture:
http://www.tarask.fr/vente/Guitare%202.jpg

it is the white switch in the slot between the tone and volume knobs.

Except on my guitar it has been removed. But I am told it doesn't just remove, so not sure what has happened.

Oh, sorry, misread that.

That toggles between the pickups. I don't know why it would be removed though, and I've even tried pulling mine out, it doesn't budge. So it sounds like you were ripped off big time.
#29
if the whole switch is out, that's not good. it's fixable, but probably not if you're a beginner (assuming you mean the whole switch and not just the switch tip). have you left him any feedback yet?

this is the problem with buying online or from ebay if you're new, it's generally a better idea to buy from a local shop, because if they do rip you off because you're a beginner, you can turn up in person and cause a fuss. and on ebay especially, even if you do know what you're doing, you can get ripped off if the seller is unscrupulous enough.

which is not to say that you shouldn't try to get this sorted out- you should, and with any luck it will be sorted. tell the seller that it's broken and that you want a refund. please feel free to post any reply he makes on here so we can check to see how much of it is BS.

also, some pics of the problems on here wouldn't hurt, just so we're sure we're talking about the same problems.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#31
Quote by Dave_Mc
if the whole switch is out, that's not good. it's fixable, but probably not if you're a beginner (assuming you mean the whole switch and not just the switch tip). have you left him any feedback yet?



Yes the whole switch


which is not to say that you shouldn't try to get this sorted out- you should, and with any luck it will be sorted. tell the seller that it's broken and that you want a refund. please feel free to post any reply he makes on here so we can check to see how much of it is BS.

also, some pics of the problems on here wouldn't hurt, just so we're sure we're talking about the same problems.


I've started a paypal dispute. He's basically accused me of damaging it and also said the picture was just for illustration purposes, it wasn't the actual guitar, the actual guitar was described by '112 Maple'.

I think he probably sent a working guitar but due to the thin cardboard and garbage bag packaging the pickup switch got damaged in transit.

I guess I'll win the dispute, paypal are known to be buyer-friendly.

Anyway, in the mean time bought an actual new 112V in Old Violin (I did think about the 412V, they are £40 more and do look nicer IMO) from a proper dealer for £50 more.

I guess I need a case, guitar strap (maybe?) and amp now.

I'm watching Roland Micro Cube auctions, hopefully won't have any problems buying that off ebay. Not sure about the case and strap. Are guitar cases standard size?
#32
Quote by thelawnet
Are guitar cases standard size?

Usually the gig-bags (soft cases) are universal, but hard cases are usually more customized to fit the certain guitar.
#33
may I suggest buying new for the first time? It's a better idea in the first place, as you know nothing's been done to it.
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Quote by Anonden
You CAN play anything with anything....but some guitars sound right for some things, and not for others. Single coils sound retarded for metal, though those who are apeshit about harpsichord probably beg to differ.
#34
dang, the whole switch? that's effed-up.

i'm guessing a dispute is the way to go, especially if he's dragging his feet and accusing you of damaging it.

claiming that he described it as the "maple" one was extremely misleading- i look at guitar info all the time, and i missed it. he should have made it MUCH clearer. It could have meant anything- i mean, after all, the one with the rosewood fingerboard still has a maple neck. as i said, misleading. not clear. however you want to put it.

case- you only really need that if your son will be travelling around with the guitar a lot. though i guess if he's going to a teacher, that'd probably qualify. with hard cases, as alex vik said, you'd want to make sure it'd fit. a strat-style case would probably work, but you'd want to make sure just in case the pacifica is a slightly different shape to a strat.

strap's a good idea if you're planning on playing standing up, yeah.

you'd need an instrument cable/lead too (cleartones are great value and high quality kit, which are available in the UK for around the tenner mark- much better than anything i've seen or tried at even close to that price, especially the kind of crap guitar shops will try to palm you off with at that money, and even at quite a bit more money). and some plectrums/picks and spare strings. other than that, that's about it i think.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?