ERG121 Review

manufacturer: Yamaha date: 06/23/2016 category: Electric Guitars
Yamaha: ERG121
Overall, for the price, and compared to other guitars in this and higher price ranges this is an excellent beginner guitar, especially if you make a few very simple adjustments yourself.
 Sound: 6.9
 Overall Impression: 7.1
 Reliability & Durability: 6.9
 Action, Fit & Finish: 6.5
 Features: 6.9
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
reviews (28) pictures (1) 56 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 6
ERG121 Reviewed by: the glue man, on october 24, 2005
11 of 16 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 220

Purchased from: Local Music Store

Features: I'm not sure when this guitar was made, but I know it wasn't too long ago. It has 22 thin frets so the action is pretty good, it's a Strat copy so this guitar is solid. It has a bolt-on maple neck, it's kind of a cheap neck though, it feels like I could snap it off really easily. The Strat-style body feels like plastic or something, and I don't know what it's made out of. But it scratches very easily and can get dents in it. It has a vlume knob, and a tone knob. A 5-way selector and since I bought it in a box set, it comes with a 10 watt amp, wammy bar, a good tuner, extra strings, picks, a weak cable, and a simple bag. // 6

Sound: I play basically every type of music, mainly rock type stuff. It's a cheap guitar, but good for beginners. When on clean, it sounds kinda flat and plain, especially with the amp it came with. When distortion is on, it has tons of distortion and is pretty good for punk or metal. It has a lot of feedback when the selector is set in the middle, or if the guitar is tunred up a lot. It's a pretty plain guitar, but as I said, very good for people who just started playing and don't want to spend much money on gear when you just start out. // 5

Action, Fit & Finish: Again, a cheap guitar, cheap wood, and everything else. Everything was put on pretty well, nothing breaks anything. The body gets scratched quite a bit, but that's ok. It has a few dents in it but it stil works pretty well. The tuning pegs work great, they never detune the guitar or anything, and they're stable. It gets fingerprints all over the place, and it gets dusty. You can tell when it's dirty. // 6

Reliability & Durability: This guitar is not for gig playing. It's for playing in your room or practicing on. I would never take it to a gig, even though I don't play gigs. I've had it for almost two years now, since I started playing. The neck and body don't seem like they will last much longer, but everything else seem fine. I've dropped it a few times and it still plays fine. I've already said it has dents and scratches all over the place but that's fine, no big deal for a cheap guitar. The finish doesn't wear off or anything though. The strap buttons are great. I haven't had any problems with them at all. It's a beginners guitar so it's not meant to last 100000 years. // 7

Overall Impression: I try to play every type of music, mostly rock, any type of rock. It's got a decent overdrive sound but not a very good clean sound. I've been playing for two years now, this was my first guitar. If it were lost or stolen I would definantly look for it, but I would get a new one anyway. It's a great beginners guitar, but not good enough for intermediate players I guess. I was thinking of getting a new guitar soon anyway. // 6

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overall: 9.4
ERG121 Reviewed by: Shorty_sx, on june 23, 2016
4 of 4 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 160

Purchased from: Yamaha, Thailand

Features: Let me start by saying that my ratings for this guitar reflect its price, as I'm mostly comparing it to other beginner, cheap guitars. The guitar is a 25.5 scale strat model Yamaha, basswood body, 22 fret maple neck (rosewood fingerboard), H-S-H stock Yamaha pickups, 5-way switch, Tone/Volume knobs, and a 6-point vintage strat-style tremolo. Aside of the finish (which I cover later on), the features on this guitar are solid.

The first to point out is that the C-shaped neck is very narrow (distance from string to string). This can be a great thing for many, but it's worth noting that this is one of the narrowest neck I've played, and quite the opposite to the average Ibanez neck, for example. Either way - it's a great neck. No, it won't compete with a $1000 guitar neck, but to me it's always felt MUCH better than almost any other guitar in the lower end category. The maple feels nice and fast, and the same applies to the fingerboard. Even after (a rough) 14 years, the truss rod still works flawlessly. Even after it was neglected and poorly maintained for years, compared to most (close to all) of the lower-end Fender Squires, Washburns, Jacksons, Ibanez Gios I've tried, this neck has surprisingly always felt better (wood/speed/feel wise). While this is a personal opinion, I've come across many who agree with this assessment.

This was originally bought as part of a "starter pack," although I'm leaving the other extras out as they're no different than the average crappy starter pack items, and are fairly irrelevant to this review. // 10

Sound: Given the price and generic Yamaha pickups, the guitar does not actually sound bad. String vibrations seem to carry quite well through the basswood body, and the H-S-H passive pickups do let you achieve a variety of sounds. The humbuckers give out a somewhat full sound, while single coil is very bright. They're not great by any means, but again on par with the average guitar in this range. I play this through an integrated 100w tube amp, and even took it on (a very expensive/proper) stage once, it performed without issues, and it sounded just fine. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: Now, as with most factory guitars in this range, the factory settings were probably not optimal. Honestly, I wouldn't know as it was years before I knew what I was doing. While the guitar had a few issues pop up over time, all of those were solvable with what the guitar provided, and that's what my review will reflect.

Action - For example, the action was clearly quite high to begin with, but with some neck/bridge adjustment I was able to get the action very low without buzzing (the necessary Allen keys were even supplied in the pack if I remember correctly).

Pickups - The pickup saddles are a bit cheapish, and at times the humbuckers would vibrate so much they'd rub against the plastic, but this was also easily solvable by adjusting them slightly.

Switch/Knobs - The 5-way switch, as many have noted, is far from perfect and can start to make noises and poor connections. Yet, you can tighten it quite easily. The same applies to the pots - they were somewhat loose to begin with, but taking off the strat-like knobs and tightening the hex screws with a wrench fixes that entirely.

Tremolo - The bridge is excellent with one minor exception (later). It stays in tune without issue, especially when it's not raised. I kept it floating for a few years, and I can't complain about tune changes much there either. It's not a locking tremolo of course, so it'll never compete with a Floyd Rose in that regard, but again - performs excellently for what it is. I've played many low and even mid range guitars with similar bridges or hardtails which stayed in tune far shorter.

Intonation - The slightly bigger issue is the intonation. With 10+ strings this is not an issue, but as I tend to prefer the super light 9s, my high E string tends to fall flat at the 12th when the bridge saddle is pushed as far towards the head as possible. However, I removed one of the 6 connecting screws, in front of the high-E saddle, which allowed me to move it further in the right direction, and get perfect intonation with super light strings.

Finish - If the neck and versatility are this guitar's best, as many have noted, the black finish is probably its biggest weakness. It looks fine from far away (stage), although it's far too glossy and simply looks cheap. It does scratch and dent easily. On the other hand, it doesn't actually come off of the guitar, and because it's black, you do have to look closer to notice. In 14 years I've hardly taken care of this guitar well, banged it on all types of furniture, even dropped a pool cue ball on it once (on a side note - coolest-looking-dent-ever), the finish is dented and scratched... but is still there and still looks new from 6+ feet away.

Input-jack - One of its not so great parts, although again, with a little tightening every few years, it's still working after all this time. // 9

Reliability & Durability: It definitely did withstand live playing, although I certainly won't advise a half-serious performer to take one of the cheapest starter guitars there is on tour. As a backup? Absolutely. If you're in a high-school band? It's perfect.

Can it take a beating? Absolutely (a little imaginary tear rolls down my cheek). As I've mentioned, I did not take care of this guitar, especially at first. The poor thing has been banged up, been stored in humid/damp places, has been reassembled and carried in bag packs on planes... and it's perfectly fine. There's a tiny bit of rust on the bridge saddles, which I could easily remove, the body/neck has a few dents, but feels great. Frets and fingerboard have shown less wear than my prestige Ibanez (which sleeps in its own case and I look after religiously), and still feel great.

The strap buttons ok - they are the vintage strat types. You should definitely replace them with locking ones should want to do anything wilder, as they're not too deep and have a "V" shape coming out, but with an average strap they will support live playing if you don't go crazy. As stated above, the finish looks cheap up close, dents and scratches easily, but does not fade, disappear, or even chip off, so an audience will remain oblivious to your guitar's dark history. // 10

Overall Impression: Overall, for the price, and compared to other guitars in this and higher price ranges (up to $400-500 guitars) this is an excellent beginner guitar, especially if you make a few very simple adjustments yourself (experience is not necessary, just some patience, for most).

It's consistently outclassed most entry level, and some intermediate level guitars, despite being poorly maintained. This includes the lower end models of popular guitar makers like Fender (Squire), Washburn, Jackson, Ibanez (mostly Gio, but not only, sadly), Gibson (Epiphone) and many others. Considering it's half the price of some of those, I found this quite surprising. It also outclasses all of the generic cheapo brands like Stagg, Vintage, etc. that you'll find all over used guitar sites.

I do not work with guitars, but I've helped a large number of friends/acquaintances pick out starter guitars, and have played and compared most guitars in this range (and others, but let's focus) at various guitar shops around the world. While I'm handy with tools in general, I'm also not adjusting guitars professionally or anything like that, so with a few basic tools I think almost anyone could maintain/get this guitar into great shape. Yes, a lot of things had to be fiddled with, but none of it required anything special or no type of destructive/potentially harming work.

Best and Worst Feature

Favorite feature? I love the neck. I actually prefer wide necks, like the jumbo fret Wizard Prestige neck on my Ibanez (which is a polar opposite to the Yamaha's narrow neck), and still love the Yamaha's neck. The vintage tremolo is also great, and perfect for anyone in the early/intermediate stages of guitar as it can allow you do anything. You can keep it leveled to act as a hard tail, or float it for a bit of fun (not too much, remember, it doesn't have a locking nut).

Its worst feature is probably the 5-point switch or the input jack, the finish indicative of its actual price (unlike the rest of the guitar which I think is worth more than you pay for it), and perhaps the pickups.

The guitar is probably not worth DiMarzio pickups, but when I replace a few pickups on my basswood prestige Ibanez, I'm planning on tossing the Ibanez pickups into the ERG121. No, it won't be the type of upgrade people brag about, but I imagine this cheap cheap guitar will actually feel and sound quite alright at that point.

Would I Re-Buy It?

If I could go back to when I bought it as my first guitar, would I buy it again? Hands down yes, it's an amazing beginner guitar, especially if you're not sure what you want (i.e. a beginner). If someone stole it... I would probably get another. I prefer a wider neck, and do not like constantly switching between the two as one is super narrow, while the other is super wide (good for practice I suppose, but does get a bit annoying at times), and yet I'd probably still replace it simply to have a cheaper guitar I can mess around with (plus a second hand one is one of the cheapest guitars out there, of any make). If I were to find a used LEFT handed one of these for sale (I play right handed) I would totally buy even now, just because I'm curious about learning the other side (ambidextrous, so who knows, could be fun).

Final Thoughts

Overall, considering these go for not much more than $50 used, and about 3 times that new, this is an excellent guitar. While by now nostalgia is part of it, I wasn't always appreciative of the guitar, and was constantly surprised when it ended up feeling better than various other guitars which one would expect (due to brand or price) to be better.

I would note that this one was purchased in 2002, so it is possible the quality changed over time, or that I got an above average one by chance, but the two others ERG121s I've played throughout the years were also quite similar in all aspects. // 10

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overall: 8
ERG121 Reviewed by: Amer91, on june 26, 2009
3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Features: The guitar has a 25.5 inch scale length, the fret a bit thick, not too much, just enough. It has 22 medium frets, a rosewood fretboard, and the body is made of basswood. I got in black, and the shape is similar to a Strat but with some modifications. It has a 6 point tremolo bridge, but I don't use the tremolo because it screws up the tuning. There pickup configuration is HSH, and there's a 5-way swtich, a tone knob, and a volume knob. The pickups are stock Yamaha pickups. // 8

Sound: I play different styles like black metal, death metal, shred, blues, and classic rock. I use it with a Roland Cube 15 and a Line 6 POD XT Live. I can some great sounds out of it in this setup. I only get noise on high-gain settings but the noise gate takes care of that. The sound is great even though it's a cheap guitar. It handles all the styles very well, without any exceptions. You can get bright clean sounds out of it for funk, and you can also get warm sounds for soloing. I only wish the pickups were a bit higher I output, but it's no big deal. // 7

Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar set-up was great. Perfect action and intonation, the pickup height was good, but I raised the neck pickup a bit for more output. There were no flaws in this guitar, and the all the hardware was in good condition. What I really like about this guitar is the neck and the frets that make shredding on this guitar a dream. // 9

Reliability & Durability: This guitar is pretty reliable. I used to take it to practice and drop it many times, and it doesn't have a single scratch on it. It can really take a beating. The strap buttons are good, but strap locks are better for players that gig with their guitars so they don't risk dropping the guitar on stage. The guitar is very dependable, and I would certainly gig with out a backup. The finish is good, because I've dropped it, and dropped a lot of things on it, and the finish doesn't wear out. // 8

Overall Impression: I play a lot of styles, and really like technical guitar playing. This is a great match for me. The weird thing is that I prefer this guitar over my old Ibanez RG370DX because of it's playability. The thicker neck, and smaller frets just make this guitar more comfortable for me to shred with. If it were stolen I'd probably buy a higher end guitar with that can feel as good as this. The neck is may favorite feature in this guitar. The only thing I hate is the cheap material, and pickups. I only wish it had DiMarzio pickups, and 24 frets, and string-through-body type of bridge. // 8

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overall: 5.8
ERG121 Reviewed by: weemansyndrome, on october 26, 2007
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Purchased from: Sound Control

Features: I bought my ERG-121 a couple of years ago from Sound Control when I was first starting guitar. It is a Strat style guitar that comes in a starter pack (including a crappy 10W amp, a gig bag, a short lead which broke within the first month of me having the guitar, and a guitar book) aimed at beginner guitarists. It has a 22 fret neck, the neck is thin, which makes it easier to play for beginners. It has some sort of crappy plastic covering which chips really easily (although I am pretty clumsy to be fair). The pickups are a bit crap and my 5-way selector has really deteriorated in the last few months. Also, when I had been using the guitar for about 6 months the crappy plastic input jack totally fell out, not what I'd call reliable, but it's what you'd expect for a cheap beginner's guitar. // 5

Sound: I play mostly with high gain distortion, through my Zoom G2.1u MFX pedal (which I hate) and a Behringer Blue Devil. When playing through this setup I can get an okay sound, if I play through a better setup I can get a surprisingly half decent sound out of the guitar. Don't use the amp that comes with the guitar though, it's rotten! Overall the sound is not great, but bearable. // 6

Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar was set up okay when I got it, I had to adjust the action and pickups a bit but the setup was okay apart from that. The lead that came with the guitar was totally rubbish, same goes for the amp. Most issues I had with the guitar happened over the time I had it rather than when I first got it though. // 8

Reliability & Durability: I have used this guitar for playing live several times, and I have to admit it's been reliable enough in that aspect, although I have had problems with it and ended up having to get a pickup replaced, my local guitar shop did this free of charge so it wasn't too much of a problem. The finish is a bit shoddy, it scratches and chips really easily. // 4

Overall Impression: Overall it's not bad for a beginner's guitar, the sound is okay, although it can be unreliable and the frets are very buzzy, it doesn't come through the amp though so it's not a big problem. If it were stolen or lost I definitely wouldn't buy it again but for my first guitar it has been okay. // 6

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overall: 5.6
ERG121 Reviewed by: unregistered, on november 19, 2004
1 of 2 people found this review helpful

Purchased from: N/A

Features: Have no idea where made and frankly don't care. Has 22 frets with a "quick action" thin neck (ideal for metal), and rosewood fingerboard. Black satin finish and mock Strat body style. Has volume/tone controls, 5 way selector Switch, 2 humbuckers, 1 single coil pick-up. Came in set with GA-10 amp, gig bag, tutorial book (with CD) and a short lead; no strap. // 6

Sound: With the Yamaha GA-10 amp this guitar produces a limited sound range but this is to be expected. This guitar and amp combination is best suited to metal due to the un-subtle and hard sound produced, though this is probably a result of the amp's exaggerated Drive setting. You get the impression that this is a loud and brash guitar which is probably ideal for the beginner and for the money, the sound quality isn't bad. I tried the guitar on a Fender Frontman 25 and a greater range of sound was available, so the sound is more dependant on the type of amp you are using rather than this guitar (to a certain extent). // 6

Action, Fit & Finish: The fit and finish is the ERG 121's let-down. The finish looks cheap and though the materials are solid, the build quality is poor. This guitar is easy to dent and the volume/tone controls are loose and difficult to maintain. The pick ups are badly screwed and often come loose. The greatest flaw is the awful selector Switch. This is tight for the first week or so but after a while it takes a long time to achieve a good connection on the first and last pick ups as the tension is lost. You have to fiddle around to change pick up and this is really annoying. The machine heads also lose tension which means that the guitar needs to be re-tuned too often. // 2

Reliability & Durability: I've had this guitar for 3 years and apart from the problems mentioned earlier, there has been no experience of durability problems. The guitar would probably withstand live playing but the standard issue strings would not (get some Eddie Ball strings). The build quality is suspect but this isn't the fault of Yamaha; the materials seem solid. If you take it all apart and re-assemble it yourself you could probably trust it for a gig without a backup. As I already said, the finish is pretty bad but then again the guitar was not expensive so you cant complain. // 6

Overall Impression: Overall, the Yamaha ERG 121 is a good beginners guitar for most types of music depending on your amp combination. With a good amp it will fare quite well as it is comfortable and generally produces a decent sound. It beats other beginner guitars I own (don't go near an "Encore") and although it isnt the prettiest, its fun to get rockin' with! If it were stolen I would get a better guitar on the insurance because I've had it for a while. With a better build and look, the ERG 121 would rock pretty hard and would be a bargain at its price. // 8

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overall: 8.5
ERG121 Reviewed by: unregistered, on october 29, 2005
1 of 2 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 300

Purchased from: Yamhaa professional

Sound: I play punk and metal and without a pedal this can give you some awesome tone. But the humbucker near the fret board sux but is excellent if you want to get the feel of a high end acoustic. On distortion, the bride humbucker gives out so much power! The SC is better for punk soloing. I got a GA-10 with this but my favorite setup is an ERG through a DigiTech RP-50 and to a Yamaha F-20 (I suggest lowering the humbuckers to get a better tone). If you play metal, go for this. // 9

Action, Fit & Finish: After 2 months of play, my pickup selector blew and I had to get it fixed. Then the input jack plastic thing snapped. I got the Yamaha guys to fit an RGX input jack in black. It takes time but it will work well for gigs. The tuning heads stay in tune, but only if use light or medium gauge strings. You can jump around a lot. The whammy bar is awesome! The frets don't hurt your fingers and they do not buzz. The guitar does retain marks so I clean the scum off with so cloth. I didn't find any flaws with the body or shape or basic hardware. // 7

Reliability & Durability: The strap button, tuners, and whatever (except the input jack) will last forever. I would depend on this for a live gig. It's good for practice and is slightly fatter than the Strat (like most Yamaha Strato styles). I suggest removing the Fretboard H and replacing it with a chrome humbucker. // 9

Overall Impression: This is an awesome heavy metal punk instrument but if you prefer a lighter option, go for a S/S/S config guitar. this guitar is as light as a feather and does not strain your neck, but the provided strap is too short and the cable is a weak one. I played my friends Squier which cost 300 more dollars and its falling apart! This guitar is a beast waiting to explode. A real work of art. I have a pac 112J and thats better for more sophisticated jazz and punk rhythm but if this were stolen, I'd gor for an RGX. // 9

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overall: 2.6
ERG121 Reviewed by: unregistered, on may 29, 2006
1 of 2 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 228.75

Purchased from: Argos

Features: What we have here is a Strat style Yamaha guitar. To be honest I don't know the year or place of manufacture, it has 22 frets, I think the neck is maple and the finger board rosewood. I haven't a clue what the finish is made of but I can tell you now its wood but it feels like plastic. It's a tremolo bridge with a really bad tremolo feature (think so long tuning everytime you use it). It has a volume and tone control and it has two humbucker pickups and a single coil in a H/S/H configuration with a 5-way selector switch. // 1

Sound: The sound itself isn't the worse you'll ever get out of a guitar if you've got a decent amp. I run it through a Marshall MG30DFX amp and for the most part it sounds fine, if not exactly brilliant although that said you dont want this to be heard by other people no matter how good a gutarist you are, slide ups and pull offs sound more like "pings and cat screeches" than anything else. All the pick-ups buzz like god only knows what and the moment you hit the strings in high distortion even if your muting the silent ones it will create a very large wall of noise and not in the good metal sense, think England fans in a pub and your closer to the sensation I'm talking about. The clean sound is much better though with a nice clear albeit it uninspiring sound, again its good for its price but you dont want other people hearing this thing. // 4

Action, Fit & Finish: The action as far as I'm concerned is fine on factory set up, you'll have to have it adjusted if you want a heavy gauge set of strings though but other than that. The pickups the bridge and the hardware in general is well set up so no problems there really. The guitar itself is tough as nails I've accidently smashed this thing against a lamp post in the past and there's not so much as a dent from the impact although small impacts like collisions with a table corner will go straight through the finish. On the subject of the finish, its cheap, its definatly a wood but its the most plastic like wood I've ever had the displeasure of coming into contact with. Beleive me you owe it to your own dignity not to be seen live with this thing its appearance just screams "beginner." The neck isnt bad though. Its a bolt on and its not exactly neck perfection but its nicely built. It's got a set of 11-48 guage strings tuned to E and its not even bent yet. // 5

Reliability & Durability: I haven't played it live yet, and I can honestly say I dont ever intend to. It would withstand it no problems (just replace that default cable first) it's just I wouldn't want to be seen with it cause frankly as I keep saying it looks like a begginers guitar. Not to mention the way it sounds isnt going to be nearly enough to please a live gig. In short if you have the balls to take this live, in front of real people, I hope to god you enjoy the sound of mocking laughter. // 2

Overall Impression: Right in short what we have here is a well constructed beginners guitar. Thats all it is dont mistake this for anything even remotely like it's more expensive counterparts. If it were lost or stolen I'd just go and buy a new one its not even worth reporting stolen I'd just get an overdraft and get a decent one like I should of done the first time around. I like the construction it can take a hell of a beating but then again the finish is crap to the point of being, well what can I say its crap. And why did I chose it? It was cheap, I think thats the only reason I bothered actually. // 1

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overall: 7.4
ERG121 Reviewed by: Phillitalian, on may 14, 2007
1 of 2 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 197.492

Features: In my opinion I've seen better, but then again it's a begginer guitar. I'm guessing it was made about 3 years ago. 22 frets, pretty thin, bolt-on, maple neck. It's a pretty solid giutar but the finish on it looks really cheap. it's a Strat copy with a H/S/H pick-up configuration with a 5-way switch. One volume and one tone knob. It was a box set so I also got a 16 watt amp, crappy cable, picks, strap, Vintage whammy bar, crappy bag and an instructional DVD. // 8

Sound: I mainly play a little bit of everything and because of the the 5-way switch this guitar, given the right circumstances, can sound about par to any song you're trying to play. Right now I'm using the amp that it came with and it can get a little noisy on the clean channel at 6 and higher. // 7

Action, Fit & Finish: Let me think, I've dropped it maybe 2 times and I have about 3 visible dents or scratches on it. the finish wasn't all that great because you can tell if you're taking care of your guitar or not, it gets dirty real easy, fingerprints are all over the place and it scrathches easily. Besides that the guiatr was set up properly, nothing seemed to be interfering with anything else and the tuning pegs are beautiful. the only things that could make them better were if you could tighten them or be able to tune your strings without so many fingerprints. // 6

Reliability & Durability: I think that this guitar would get you through 2 or 3 songs, but if you're planning to play more, it wouldn't be too much of a problem. I haven't had a live gig (yet) but I think it's stupid to play without a backup. The strap buttons are a good size to keep it up but if you're gonna attempt some stupid stage moves (like throwin it around yourself) I suggest buying a locking strap. // 8

Overall Impression: Like I said, I play just about everything and I think this guitar can play every style if you have the right amp, effects, etc. This is my first guitar and if it were stolen, I'd beat the crap outa whoever took it n take it back but if I can't do that I'd buy something new, not because I don't like it, but because I like variety. I think I bought this over something like a Peavey Raptor or a squire Strat was because this had 2 humbuckers and a single coil and because I didn't want the same guitar that everyone else owns. // 8

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overall: 9
ERG121 Reviewed by: unregistered, on december 17, 2007
1 of 3 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 327.57

Purchased from: Argos

Features: I'm Guessing it was made in China or Korea or somewhere, Dunno when. It has 22 frets on a bolt on maple neck and a Sonokeling 350mm radius fingerboard which I think plays amazing compared to a lot of other entry level guitars and even proffesional guitars! An agathis body which dents a bit to easily but what do you expect from a 89 quid guitar. The Finish is black satin, it scratches easily. It's got a double cutaway body like the pacifas giving you easy acces to the frets and a Vintage vibrato which is fine for doing the metal divebombs. No Dimebag Squealling here tho, it's got passive electronics and two humbuckers and a single coil. Came in a pack with a book, 10 watt amp, case, lead. // 8

Sound: I play anything, mostly rock and a bit of metal, it suits these styles perfectly not a blues or jazz guitar tho. Just stick to rock, metal or punk. I'm using it with A Marshall MG100HDFX and a Jimi Hendrix Wah Pedal. It's not noisy at all! I give it and 8 for sound if your playing rock and metal! // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: Action was perfect when I got it. No fret buzz and I've been playin it for 3 years. Intonation is fine. The pickups where fine when I got them but it's had a few smashes (doors etc) so the neck humbuckers wonky for some reason. The bridge is leaning a tiny bit forward. It wasn't like that when I got it (again my fault). I haven't noticed any flaws at all exept for one of the control knobs keep falling off But I changed them for something else so that probably why! Tell a lie the input jack snapped and the washer keeps going loose. Not a big deal, fixed in ten minutes. // 10

Reliability & Durability: I've played two gigs with it and it's great live! Although I would definately get strap Locks as the strap buttons are small and there's nout more embarrissing than your guitar falling of it's strap! The hardware is great and I know I can count on it while playing live, I play without a backup. The finish has worn down above the bridge where I rest my hand and it's scratched everywhere! // 10

Overall Impression: Like I said this is perfect for beginner/intermediate guitarists. I also own a Jackson RR3 and a starsound for school. It's obviously not as good as the Jackson but a million times better than most other guitars I've played. If it were stolen I would try find the stupid guy Who stole it and save up for a Yamaha Pacifica 112 or a Jackson JS30 if I couldn't. I love the neck on this guitar I just wish the body was alder (or something better) and it had better pickups. // 9

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overall: 5.6
ERG121 Reviewed by: Kamil12l, on december 18, 2009
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: € 129

Purchased from: XMusic Dublin , Ireland

Features: This guitar has a 22 fret maple neck. The body is made from wood but it is very poor quality wood looks and feels almost like plastic :(. I got it in Ebony with golden bridge and tuners. The bridge is very very basic it doesn't let your guitar stay tuned for 10 minutes of playing when using a little bit of tremolo bar. There is an 1 volume knob and 1 tone knob which are terribly connected to the body. The pickups are also poorly connected to the body just touch them and they will come out the other side of the guitar :D It also comes with a gig bag at least my one did. // 5

Sound: Although the quality is poor the sound is pretty awesome I use the guitar through a very good quality cable with an Line 6 Spider IV 15 v amp and when it comes to Metal this guitar is simply great, the guitar sounds great on overdrive and the clean channel sounds good, not great or bad it's good. // 9

Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar is terrible when it comes to quality the materials are cheap and poor quality, the guitar gets out of tune in no longer then 20 minutes thanks to the terrible tremolo bridge and everything is very badly adjusted. Don't let that look fool you it's a cheap guitar which looks nice but when it comes what it should do which is playing some music it's at the very bottom of the list. // 3

Reliability & Durability: This guitar will last for maximum 1 year with me it's only a beginner guitar so don't think other Yamaha guitars are as badly made as this one I recommend Pacifica series spend 400 and get a bad ass pacifica they are quite good quality or just get and Epiphone the best guitar make for the price in the world. I'll never use it in a gig even as a backup. // 4

Overall Impression: Great for beginners Who like rock metal punk etc. Not the best quality but it will do for the price ;)overall an average beginner guitar that will help you learn for no longer than 1 year ;) So when it comes to buying a beginner guitar I'll choose Epiphone Les Paul Special 2 // 7

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overall: 7.2
ERG121 Reviewed by: unregistered, on march 08, 2012
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: € 150

Purchased from: Nakas

Features: Made in 2011 in Indonesia. 22 frets. The body is basswood, the neck is bolt-on and of maple and the fretboard is rosewood. The bridge is Vintage and it has an H-S-H arrangement for the pick-ups. It also has a tremolo, volume, tone and a 5-way pick-up selector. // 7

Sound: I mostly play country, blues, jazz and a bit of rock and I would have to say that this guitar is better suited for metal or punk. I bought it for my nephew as a birthday present and I had a go at it to see what it can do. The amp which comes with it sounds less than good so I gave an old Marshall I had lying around and it sounds MUCH better! I think its at its best when playing with the bridge or bridge and neck pick-ups but is limited to as to the sounds it can give. // 6

Action, Fit & Finish: The set-up was good from the factory and the guitar had no flaws. The strings were a bit high for my nephew so I just brought them closer to the frets. The tremolo is the worst on this guitar. It makes it go out of tune instantly but when it is not used it stays in tune for a surprisingly long time. // 8

Reliability & Durability: My nephew has had it for just two months so I would know about durability although everything seems to be in order and doesn't seem likely to break down. The only problem I had was thrashing around with it I broke one of the strap buttons which are not so solid. I a Fender Telecaster for gigs and I would never this guitar not even as a back up. It doesn't suit my music either. But it is a great little guitar for beginners considering the price. // 7

Overall Impression: As I said I play blues, jazz, country and a bit of rock and this is not a good match for me but could be for someone who plays rock-metal-punk. I have been playing for 10 years now and I own a Fender Telecaster and a Gibson Les Paul. I am not comparing this guitar to mine of course. I am trying to judge it as what it is, a beginners guitar, an entry level one. The price good, the guitar seem solid enough, the amp that come with it is no good so get another one. This made a perfect gift for my nephew who wanted to start learning and is very close to the sounds he wants to play. So for what it is it seems great but you would "have" to switch to something better if get good enough. that's fair, considering the price. // 8

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overall: 8
ERG121 Reviewed by: UG Team, on july 11, 2003
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Features: Made In Indonesia (don't be put off by this one) 22 Frets 5-way blade selector 1 volume pot, 1 tone pot HSH Pickups passive electronics Maple neck Vintage Trem Black Finish // 8

Sound: I play lots of rock and punk and the bridge humbucker's sound is very full and rich. The single coil's good for funk as its springy and the bridge humbucker sounds mellow. This is one versatile guitar so don't be fooled by its exterior. I play it on a Yamaha 8 watter (it sux i know) with only a clean/drive toggle, Treble,Bass,Volume knobs but i still can achieve a wide range of sounds using the pickup selector and volume and tone knobs if you have a better amp than mine, this is one guitar that produces many sounds. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: The pickups were fitted a little too low but all it takes was a little adjustment. The pickup selector wasn't smooth but overall its fine. // 6

Reliability & Durability: Of course this guitar would withstand live playing as it is solidly build. The hardware seems fine after 2 years but the strap may slip ocassionally. I would probably not dare to use it without a backup. // 8

Overall Impression: I have played this guitar for around two years and it is very well-built except for a few dents which I caused on the sides of the guitar. if it was lost I probably would get another one cos' this axe is more of a beginner's guitar. I love the pickups the most but tremolo gets out of tune sometimes. I have no problem with that as I'm no Eddie Van Halen wannabe. I kinda wished it had a Floyd Rose and a 24 Fret neck but its a great beginner's guitar and i could have those fitted at any guitar shop. // 8

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overall: 6.4
ERG121 Reviewed by: unregistered, on october 12, 2004
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Purchased from: Argos

Features: This Yamaha has 22 frets. Complete solid wood. Maple finish on the neck. 1 Volume control and 1 Tone control, And 5 pick-ups. // 8

Sound: The sound on this guitar is quite good for what I play, which is mainly rock and metal. I am now using a SoundTonic 25 Watt amp, and the sound that I get out is it is great (well, for me anyway), it did origonal come with a Yamaha 10Watt amp, but I got a bit bored of that one, as it only had a volume, bass and middle control, as well as an Overdrive Button, which I have to say gave a very good vibe to the guitar! The guitar in general can be loud, but you have to pump it up on the guitar and the amp quite a bit! // 6

Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar was very well fitted, but until I fell off of my bike and made a bit of a dent under the controls (which I was quite upset about it as I only had it for about a month!) After about 5-6 months, the tone control became loose, and so its a bit hard to work out what number I'm on alot of the time on the tone! I have been playing the guitar for about 1 year and a half, and it is a bit rusty near the bottom of the guitar! // 4

Reliability & Durability: I should think that the guitar would last through a Live performance, but wouldn't use it if I didn't have a back-up! (But then I wouldn't on any guitar really.) The strap buttons are quite solid, but you do have to titen them up every now and then, as you do on most guitars. The finish on mine is just as good as it was when I got it, it hasn't worn out or anything. // 8

Overall Impression: I play mostly rock & metal as I said, and I think that this guitar is quite suited for this. I have been playing for about 1 year and a half, I own a SoundTonic 20 Watt amp, and a 5 Meter lead for it (if I was you, I wouldn't keep with the lead that they give you with the package that I got, it just isn't long enough and doesn't give out the best of sounds.) If this guitar was to be stolen or lost, then I should think that I would get a different one ot this. // 6

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overall: 6.4
ERG121 Reviewed by: unregistered, on may 31, 2005
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Features: The Yamaha ERG has 22 frets, with a mahogany fingerboard. It has a Strat stly body, with a volume knob and a tone knob. It has 5 pickups and a nice bridge. It comes with a gig bag, a strap, a cable (a weak one), a tremolo bar, a tuner, picks and strings and a 10-watt amp. // 6

Sound: Accually I've play many kind of rhythm and songs but most I've play metal and rock. I used the Vintage Amp and also 10-watts Yamaha G-10. Quite nice but when I play it in some jamming studio, it was humming and maybe it is couse of cheap wood or else. To me, it have a bright sound, if you know how to play it very well. And this guitar is good for your homework practice. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: This guitar created very well with start style body and I've dissapointed how they put the pick-up. Quite worst when I can't get a good picking. For a quality, maybe Yamaha didn't used a good quality of wood. And maybe becouse of that, this ERG121 humming when the overdrive mode has apply. // 6

Reliability & Durability: Accually, in band I wasn't have a second guitar becouse to me, I know how to devellope the sound with this guitar and it was available for withstand live playing(if you know how to create it). // 6

Overall Impression: I playing rock, blues, alternative and also metal and even classical too. I have used this guitar for 1 year and I am happy with it. Accually I have asked it (before buy) but to me, it was not the important thing. If it stolen, I might get another guitar. Just to try the another guitar, not becouse I hate this guitar. ERG0-121 might be a good guitar if it was build with a good quality wood and good placement pickups also come with a good amplifier too. // 6

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overall: 6.4
ERG121 Reviewed by: prhann, on june 01, 2005
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 226.8

Purchased from: Musikborsen

Features: The Yamaha ERG-121 has 22 frets and black finish. The wood in the body is agathis, the neck is maple and the fingerboard mahogany. A Strat style body with black finish, with one volume knob and one tone knob. It has a 5-way pickup selector and a Vintage tremolo. The pickups is H-S-H passive electronics. // 6

Sound: I am rhythm guitarist and singer in a punk band. I like the sound especially the bride bucker, perfect for distortion, powerchords and solos. The neck bucker by itself is a little muddy, but if you combinate it with the singlecoil it has a smooth clean sound, perfect for blues. I use it with a Peavey Rage 158, no pedals or such. Just pure guitar and amp. The bridge humbucker has a very bright sound, which I really like. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: The action was surprisingly ok. No fret buzz. Pickups well adjusted. The black finish look good. The tuning machines is ok and hold the tuning well. The biggest flaw is the pickup-selector Switch. After a time of use it begin to make a popping noise when you change pickups. // 6

Reliability & Durability: It will withstand live playing but if you want to be sure, take a backup guitar with you. I play gigs without backup and it works. The hardware is ok, the strap buttons are solid. The finish is good, but will war off a little bit with the time. // 6

Overall Impression: I have play aoucostic guitar for 2 years and electric guitar for 1 year. This is my first and only electric for the moment. If it was lost/stolen I would save up and buy a Gibson SG Standard. I love the bridge humbucker. It's a very good beginners guitar, much better than a Squire Fender copy. I've had it for 8 months and it havent let me down. // 6

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overall: 8.4
ERG121 Reviewed by: unregistered, on june 03, 2006
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 180

Purchased from: Thomsun Dubai

Features: I don't know what year the guitar is made but it's made in Indonesia. It has 22 frets, nice body finish. It's a Strat body style H/S/H passive pickups. Nice bridge with tremolo, 1 volume and 1 tone control, 5 way-switch blade selector. It's a non-locking tuner but it's stable. // 8

Sound: I prefer playing mainly rock music and this guitar suits my taste. I got a Dean Markley 40 watts amp (cheap amp in my opinion) and Zoom G2.1u guitar pedal for my guitars. The sound of this guitar is awesome maybe because of my effects. The bridge humbucks is great when in distortion and fretboard humbuckers are for clean tone, single coil is good too. The guitar does have this buzzing sounds but its ok maybe because of my amp. There are many varieties sounds you can make with this guitar. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: Well action is good, fit is not that bad and finish is ok too. The pickups are well adjusted in my opinion. My only big problem with this guitar is the selector Switch because it creates unwanted sounds when switching pickups and it does tend to loose also. This guitar also gets dirt easily and you just have to clean it everytime you use it. // 8

Reliability & Durability: Well for sure it will withstand playing No Doubt bout it and for sure it will surive the "abuse" while playing it in a gig hahaha. Yes the hardware will last but not forever, just dont drop it. The strap buttons are solid enough. I can depend on this guitar but I'll bring a backup for sure (who doesn't need a backup anyway). // 8

Overall Impression: I've playing for 3 years. I got two guitars one cheap guitar and this ERG 121 (also a cheap guitar). I have no regret when I bought this guitar because I really like it but if it were stolen or lost, I might buy a Paul Reed Smith Tremonti SE model (my dream guitar of course hehe). Well I wished this just had a more stable pickup selector anything than that is great for this guitar. // 10

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overall: 7.8
ERG121 Reviewed by: unregistered, on january 18, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Purchased from: Argos

Features: This guitar has 22 Frets with an Agathis Body. Bolt on Maple neck with Sonokeling fingerboard. 25.5" Scale Length. It has a Black finish and is based on the Strat-type format. It has a string-thru body of which I find to be very good and precise. Passive electronics with a Volume, Tone and 5 way selector. Pickups are stock. This was my first guitar so I bought it in a package including an Amp and Instruction book. // 7

Sound: I find myself playing a lot of Metal/Rock influenced music and this guitar suits it suprisingly well. I run it through a DigiTech RP100 with a home made 50W stack. The sound is very full but unfortunately these pickups buzz like crazy when lights are on full. The 5-way selector gives suprisingly different sounds on each setting of which can be adapted to your playing style. The bridge pickup is where I have it set 99% of the time and I find this does the job. // 7

Action, Fit & Finish: Guitar came very well setup with no configurations needed whatsoever. Pickups were nicely set and even. I can't seem to find any floors as of yet but I did find after replacing it with Ernie Ball Super Slinkys, I found I had to change the action of the 6th String as it buzzed like crazy. Easily done tho with a small screwdriver. // 8

Reliability & Durability: I have dropped this guitar, bashed doorways and have been doing so for 6/7 years. It has been amazing, it seems invincible! Obviously after lots of bashing, the finish does chip away, leaving the Agathis bright wooden body to show through. The neck is very sturdy and gives you the feeling it wnt break but it is still smooth enough to be versatile with high and low notes. I'd say that the finish has lasted me a pretty long time as only a few chips have come away, nothing massive. // 9

Overall Impression: Overall, I think this guitar is perfect for any beginner. It looks good for what you pay and the pickups are suprisingly good for Yamaha Stock. If it were stolen, I probably wouldn't purchase it again as I have a lovely Ibanez of which I adore to death now. I do however still play this guitar as the one-way locking bridge is very efficient and consistent (compared to the Ibanez's Floating Trem). // 8

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overall: 6.4
ERG121 Reviewed by: _Metal_Guitar_, on april 04, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Features: I bought this guitar second hand of a mate (with an amp) so it didn't come with any of it's original accessories. It is a Strat copy (but not identicle to the Strat) with a plastic gloss black finish. It has 22 frets and a bolt on maple neck. It has an agathis body (I think) and a tremelo arm. There is a tone knob and and a volume knob, and a five way pickup selector. Also there are two humbuckers and one single coil pickup. // 6

Sound: This guitar is a good starter guitar, but not much good if you are looking for a second, third, etc. guitar. It is suited for playing most rock/metal music, but the pickups aren't great so there is quite a bit of feedback when you turn the gain up (on your amp/pedal). I use it with a Marshall MG10CD and Boss DS-1 Distortion pedal. It sounds OK but like I said there is a lot of feedback when you turn the gain up. However the 5 way pickup selector and tone knob mean that you can get different sounds out of it, basically just buy choosing the amount of treble there is (the tone knob is basically just a treble knob and obviously the neck pickup is more bassy than the bridger pickup) so you can get a punk sorta sound when the treble is high and a more metal sound on the neck pickup. However I always use the bridge pickup because it sounds a lot better. // 7

Action, Fit & Finish: The action isn't great, I found that the pickups were too high and I kept bashing my pick on them, so I lowered them. Also, the strings are quite high off the neck which isn't good. As for the fit and finish, the pickups are wonky, the neck feels weak, and the pickup selector is wonky. But once you get used to these things it's not too bad to play, and the wonky pickups stopped bothering me after a while. // 6

Reliability & Durability: I find this guitar is easily dented and feels quite weak. It is only really good enough for practising with at home and it wouldn't be durable or reliable enough to use at a Live performance. Mine hasn't broken yet, but it just feels like a matter of time before it does break. // 6

Overall Impression: This guitar is a good beginners guitar, but nothing more. It is suited for playing anything from light rock to metal. The sound quality is OK but there is quite a lot of feedback which is annoying. I think the erg 121 looks okay but isn't very durable, and the action isn't great. If your'e looking for a first guitar, you might want to consider this one, as you can find it for about 80 on the internet now, but if your'e an experienced guitarist, Steer well clear. // 7

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overall: 6
ERG121 Reviewed by: unregistered, on august 18, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: £ 120

Purchased from: Argos

Features: The features of thos guitar are basoc and simple, it has a 5-way pickup selector, a tone and volume knob and a whammy bar. I got it as part of a Starter Kit which included a Yamaha 10W amp with shoddy cable, a dust bag for the guitar, spare strings, a few picks, some allon keys for adjusting the bridge, and a half-decent tuner. The tuning pegs are very tightly fitted. In fact they creak slightly when turned, however this has meant that they hold the tunng very well, important for beginners Who may not be able to tune all that well. The rosewood fretboard has 22 fairly narrow frets which, combined with the thin neck, make this guitar good for quick playing and reduces the distance the fingers and hand needs to stretch when playing, ideal for the younger or begining player. The guiatr was fairly well setup considering it came from Argos, although I had to make some minor adjustments to the action to stop my fingers getting cought under the strings when bending, but this only took five minutes. The guitar is always a highly glossy black paint and varnish over what wood I do not know. The bridge uses a tremolo bridge system following the same style as it's bigger brothers. It is very solid and holds everything perfectly, after adfjusting the action I have not touched it for over a year and everything is fine. Overall the package was very full and had everything a beginning player could need at typical Yamaha low prices. // 7

Sound: I play a lot of rock, anything from bluesy Guns N' Roses style rock to heavy metal Metallica. This guitar is pretty specific on what it sounds good with. The tone of the guitar is very poor, it's a bit flat and empty and sort of cheap sounding. When trying to get a soulful or emotional sound out of this guitar you may find that it lacks a bit of passion, but then it is a cheap guitar. Having said this I only ever played this guitar on the cheap amp that came with it, though I do not think the sound would improve much on a full 3-part stack. However, when a lot of overdrive is used and the volume cranked up a bit it does produce a farily adequate heavy metal crunch which suits it's thin neck and narrow fretboard. It is far better for playing the heavier end of my music tastes than the classic rock stuff, it's just so limitted on what it can do. As a beginner guitar though, which is what this is, it's great for the simple tunes, scales and riffs that might be tought to a newbie as they get used to the way an electric works, I know it helped me get to grips with things a few years ago. // 3

Action, Fit & Finish: The general finish of this guitar was top-notch. When you considcer that it got to me in a box that had been shipped around the world on the back of a lorry straight out of the factory with no set up or TLC, and all I had to do was tweak the acion slightly. It's solid and well bolted together and the frets were pressed in well. Overall I was impressed as a beginner is unlikely to want or know to adjust the bridge, nut or tuning and this guitar is pretty ideal for that. // 7

Reliability & Durability: Now for a warning. Do not take this guitar to a gig/ tour or on stage! Apart from the sound which is not stage-worthy, this guitar is not up to continuous knocks and bangs and would probably break if thrown about in the back of a van. The hardware is pretty solid and things like strap buttons and tuning pegs are very tight and well fitted, but I wouldn't trust the body not to crack and the soft exposed wood of the neck will dent under pressure form a finger nail, so could wellbreak if given a good beating. The fret wire is very dense, I'm not sure what it is made of but my guess is a stainless steel that is very tough. It has not worn and there is a similar story with the fretboard; the finish is pretty weather-proof. It comes down to the purpose of this guitar. Sure, you don't want to take it on stage, but then this is a beginners guitar ideal for use in a bedroom or small practise room and is plenty strong enough to stand up to to odd knock here and there and quite a lot of playing. // 7

Overall Impression: I got this guitar a few years ago when I decided I wanted to play some electric stuff as well as the accoustic I had been playing for a few years. I am about to buy a Les Paul Studio (the Gibson not Epiphone) and though I can see the quality floors in this guitar, I maintain that it is the perfect starting guitar for a younger player. I even used it for a Grading and it was great. I consider myself lucky that I got this guitar, mainly because I had absolutely no idea what I was buying (hence the fact it came from Argos), and also because I chose solely on the aesthetics of the guitar, which by the way are one of its strong points. I would recommend this to anyone starting out electric guitar for it's ease of use and overall quality of build and setup. // 6

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overall: 1.8
ERG121 Reviewed by: Ezz_zombie, on march 25, 2009
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 180

Purchased from:

Features: This is the Yamaha ERG 121C guitar (I don't know what's the exact difference between it and the ERG 121 but here goes the review anyways). This is an old beginner Yamaha model, I couldn't find it's exact year as it's not listed on Yamaha's website, it is made in china and I've seen other versions made in indonesia (I guess the "C" in the model name stands for "china" maybe) anyways, This is a 22 thin frets guitar with a rosewood fingerboard, a bolt-on maple neck, and a weak agathis body. It has a black satin glossy finish that is easily scratch-able, and stock passive pickups (2 humbuckers and one single coil "H-S-H"). The body type is a Standard Strat, which is comfortable and convenient yet boring and "not" cool, it features a fixed bridge with a Vintage Tremolo bar, and a set of controls: a 5-way pickup selector, a tone knob, and a volume knob. It has "brandless" tuners that lose tuning very easily. The Guitar came with a gig bag and a cable shield. // 3

Sound: This is strictly a beginners guitar, it sounds somehow "okay" on clean channel, but once you crank up the distortion you just hear noise and muddy notes that you can't distinguish with your ears. This is NOT a guitar for Metal (or maybe it is.. *cough* black metal *cough*), infact, quite a few local black metal bands use this guitar and they sound great as black metal has that "raw" sound, so -surprisingly- some musicians might actually rate this guitar as a 10/10. Anyways, I used different amps and effects and yet stays teh same problem, the notes cannot be identified, you need an extremely good noise gate to be able recognize what you're actually playing, and that of course kills the power of the guitar and prevents you from playing palm muted chords, tapping notes, sweeping is extremely difficult too on that guitar, and it's really hard to get pinch harmonics out of it. however -to be fair- the guitar can produce a variety of sounds depending on the 5-way pickup selector, you can play bluesy-groovy stuff, clean stuff, dry-crunchy stuff.. So, it's good for learning different styles. // 2

Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar came in a sh-tty condition, I had to adjust it's action, and the pickups were "sunken" into the guitar, I had to send the guitar to a local store to fix it. That cheap guitar came with a lot of flaws; poorly fitted, loose tuning pegs, loose controls (volume knob came right off in my hand when I just touched it, haha -true-) // 1

Reliability & Durability: This guitar will not withstand live playing, as it doesnt't even withstand home practice! If I am to list what is broke in the guitar then I'd have to mention things like: buzzing on some lower frets (and yes I did change the strings), the jack-input broke a couple of times, the neck pickups screw has (I dunno if it melted or what) but it's not a screw anymore, it's smooth and the pickup keeps on falling into the guitar while I'm playing occasionally, one strap button broke and made the guitar fall, the finish is horrible, I scratched it a couple of times and now the paint "cracked" and wore out, oh, and did I mention that one time I was headbanging while playing and the guitar hit my head -goofy me- and I didn't get Hurt but the guitar had a bump! I swear! I'd definitely not use that guitar on a gig without a backup, infact, I'd never use is even as a backup. // 1

Overall Impression: I play mostly Death and Thrash Metal, this guitar is not for that those genres, it's not suitable except for beginners, or for playing black metal! (I'm not being a "racist" on black metal, I used to play in a black metal band and I used that guitar). I regret buying this guitar, and I'd give it for free to any of my friends Who show a passion for guitar and wanna start learning. To sum up the Loves n hates I'd have to say that I love the features of that guitar as it's better than most beginner guitars (trem. And humbuckers), and what I hate about it is everything else. I compared I to the Yamaha pacifica before buying, and since this was more expensive and had humbuckers rather than single coils so I thought this would be a more "metal" guitar, however, I was wrong. in the end I'd like to say that: Yamaha discontinued that product for a reason! // 2

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overall: 7.4
ERG121 Reviewed by: RainingBlood27, on august 27, 2009
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: C$ 220

Purchased from: Local Music Store

Features: Looking at the serial number on the back I can already tell it was made in Central Asia, sometime in '07. There are 22 frets on the guitar, which makes it decent for playing most songs (though I personally prefer 24 frets). The neck is maple, feels a little thin to me, but that's because I've been playing on my Bullet Strat recently. I can still play pretty well on this guitar, but I prefer my Strat to this guitar simply because it has 3 single coils making it nice for Baroque-style music. The wood is made from basswood, so it'll dent easier than higher quality guitars. The finish makes it feel like a toy, quite frankly. It chips and scratches easily, although I managed to keep it in alright shape since I got it. Its a Strat-style body, with a Strat-style bridge. The controls given are: Volume, Tone, and a 5-way selector switch. The pickups I currently have on the guitar are the factory pickups, but I plan on replacing them with something like Duncan Seymour or EMG. There is a single coil in the middle, and two humbuckers. The guitar comes with a strap, gig bag, cable (though its crap), a 10-Watt amp (thats also, very crap), extra strings, a string winder, and a tuner. // 7

Sound: I've used this guitar to play a lot of metal and hard rock (thrash metal if you care to know). Its actually not bad, and the humbuckers aren't bad either, they have high gain so it does pick up sliding from the strings, but I don't mind it when I'm playing something raw and heavy. The stock strings, I must say, are complete shit. I'm serious. They oxidized in two weeks. The .09 string broke the next week, and my little sister was the one Who broke it, and shes pretty weak. Needless to say, back when it broke I was very uneducated on how to change strings, so I left it that way. The bridge humbucker is nice for songs that have high gain, while the neck humbucker is nice for psychedelic stuff like "Purple Haze". But, the guitar is really only for beginners/early intermediate players. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar was set up nice, except for one thing. The end of the bridge always stuck at a 15 degree angle in the air when tuned to E Standard. This was a problem because it raised the strings pretty high off the fretboard, requiring more strength than necessary to hold the note on the fret. When I tuned down the guitar, this problem was resolved. To this day, I still don't know what went wrong with it. The top tuning peg was and still is kind of loose. Doesn't bother me too much though. // 6

Reliability & Durability: Its pretty reliable, I'd say. It will definitely withstand live playing, but I personally wouldn't use it live. Instead, I would only use it for studio recording. The one piece of hardware that didn't last was the In-Jack, but you can always get that fixed. The strap buttons are solid, never had a problem with them. I'd play it without a backup, sure. The finish, wont last though. // 9

Overall Impression: I play Thrash or Death Metal mostly, and this guitar is quite good for down-tuning. I've gone to Drop A with this guitar, and it still sounds great. I've been playing about a year and a half now, but this guitar is where I learned MOST of my expertise. I also own (as previously mentioned) a Squier Bullet Stratocaster, a Line 6 Spider 3 120-Watt, a Boss DS-1 pedal (which I don't use/need anymore because my Line 6 has multiple customizable channels and multiple distortion settings), and the crappy 10W that came with the Yamaha. The Yamaha, though, sounds great on my Line 6. If it got lost/stolen, I'd look for it, but after a while I'd give up and go buy a Pacifica or something. I only wish it had a Floyd Rose licensed system. Great beginner guitar though. // 7

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overall: 7.2
ERG121 Reviewed by: FrFalc, on february 24, 2011
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: € 269

Purchased from: Fnac

Features: As far as I can see, it's impossible to find out specific information about the guitar : The serial number search on doesn't yield any result. Because of that, I'm unable to tell the year it was made, the wood of the body nor the neck (that and I don't have enough experience with other guitars yet). Other than that, it's a plain but pleasant looking Strat shaped guitar, complete black finish with HSH stock Yamaha pickups. Only available in a bundle together with a tuner (not chromatic), a strap, an amp, a gigbag and some picks. // 7

Sound: This was my first guitar. Playing almost only metal, the guitar sounds all right. Using it with the bundled GA-15 you can get a decent distortion type sound using the Bridge pickup and the gain channel of the amp. Though you need to EQ it properly, otherwise it can sound really mettalic, and not in the good way. The neck pickup gives a nicer sound when you play in the highest parts of the neck, but it's very noisy and sensitive. I ended up buying a second hand Boss MT-2 pedal for the ability to Switch for clean to distortion. The resulting sound is good enough to practice, play on your own. It's too metallic though for recording purposes. I rate it 7 because as a noob, I thought the sound was pretty good. If I compared it to the sound I get from my Virgo, I'd only give it 3. // 7

Action, Fit & Finish: The action was pretty low with factory settings. I didn't end up changing it. The pickup setup was good too. There was a piece of paper explaining how to alter the pickup height and the consequences of doing so. Which is a nice piece of information for a beginner. In the end, the guitar didn't take any altering to be playable. No flaw whatsoever. // 9

Reliability & Durability: Unlike what most people seem to think, I found the ERG 121 to be quite durable. It only has a few micro-dents. The paint only chipped in one of these micro-dents. It's still in a very good state. The finish is extremely prone to finger marks. I haven't played many guitars, but they were all covered in finger marks, so I don't hold it against the ERG 121. Either the strap buttons totally suck, or the bundled strap does. It's ok to play standing provided you don't move around too much. I'd totally put strap locks on if I had to play live with this. It will definitely last for a bedroom beginner. // 6

Overall Impression: As I said I play metal and I can get a satisfactory tone ouf the guitar and the amp it came with. I've been playing for a year and two months, and I feel I have outgrown this guitar. I just bought BC Rich Virgo and will review it once I have spent enough time playing it. If it was lost, I'd be sad. As my beginning guitar I'm attached to it, but I wouldn't buy another one of these. The overall quality of the guitar is consistent. It's a plesant guitar to play when you haven't touched another guitar yet. This is important though: Do not consider this guitar if you already know how to play. It's perfect for discovering the instrument, practicing and all but the quality won't allow you to Shine live or in recordings. If you've never played the guitar and you can get the bundle for under 200 bucks, go for it! // 7

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overall: 8.8
ERG121 Reviewed by: soulbrother69, on july 15, 2011
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: £ 29.99

Purchased from: Cash Coverter

Features: Made probably quite recently it has 22 frets and was made in Indonesia. It has black gloss body and rosewood fretboard. It has a string through body with tremelo unit. It has two humbuckers and one single coil pick up located in the centre. It has a volume and tone control. It has metal tuners. // 10

Sound: It sounds great with punk guitar playing and has some nice sustain for such a light bodies guitar. I have used it with my Zoom 707 effects and WEM valve amp, although I haven't been able to turn the volume right up yet it does have some nice distorted and grungey sounds which are easily accessible. The sound is not as full as with a heavier and more 'woody' type guitar but this is actually one of it's strengths and why it is so good for punk, new wave and reggae. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: I bought the guitar second hand and it had no 5 way selector. I got one for 4.38 on ebay and it was simple to wire up. It also had no electronics back plate so I made a clear one out of a CD case. The pick up selector works fine and there is no fret buzz or electronics problems with it so far. The great thing about this guitar is the extremely low action with no fret buzz (as said before) this makes the guitar wonderful for playing lots of bar chords which is what you do for the majority of punk and reggae. It is also good for soloing andplaying fast licks. Not so good for blues playing. // 9

Reliability & Durability: I have only just acquired this Beast so I have not played it live. The hardware seems fine and the strap buttons are cool. I know I can depend on it and will be using it a lot without a backup. The finish is a bit tacky but that slao adds to its appeal. // 8

Overall Impression: This guitar is fantastic for thrashing about on and trying to play complicated stuff quite quickly. The strings are a little bit too close together for some styles of finger picking but that is not what it is for so for the purposes I use it for it does the job. // 9

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overall: 8.6
ERG121 Reviewed by: unregistered, on august 04, 2011
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: £ 50

Purchased from: Ebay

Features: The Yamaha ere 121 is a great starter guitar and also is a Strat copy. The guitar has 22 thin for some good action frets, Rosewood Fingerboard which feels like it could snap but its alright. Because this is a Strat copy the guitar is quite solid but does feel like its made out of plastic. I got this guitar in a pack with a 10wat amp, a strap, some picks, spare strings, a DVD lesson and a Yamaha tuner. The guitar aso has 5 pick ups with a five way pickup selector master tone and master volume. // 8

Sound: The sound on the guitar is quite plain unless you crank it with loads of distortion but its good for mainly rock and punk music but if you set the amp right with less distortion u can play blues without it sounding wrong.But to be truthful you can play anytime of music on the guitar because if your a beginner you wont worry about this unless you get seriously into it. A good tips is to get a Zoom pedal which has 100s of effects and you can buy these of ebay between 20-60 pounds mattering to which model it is, or a pod. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: Eventhough this is a cheap guitar the action is really good nothing wrong with the setup it is fine the only problem is that it gets scracthed easily but can't see it to much on the gloss and alot of dust gets picked up inbetween pick ups but nothing a cloth wont fix // 9

Reliability & Durability: This guitar is my first guitar and sice I've got it 4 years ago its been fine no problems apart from sum scratches, and string are quite strong I used to play really rough on the guitar and only after 3 years 1 string snapped. Amazing !!! But really nothing to worry about it can take anything and it wont get damaged to easily if you drop the guitar or anything. // 9

Overall Impression: I like to play rock and blues and this is fine for its as I've already said get a Zoom pedal you'll be sorted for any music. If this guitar got stolen I would look for it because after a couple of years you'll start to get attached to it but I would buy another guitar. If your not going to play forever get this guitar if you'r thinking of sticking with get this guitar for the price you can get it for you can't go wrong. // 9

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overall: 5.4
ERG121 Reviewed by: Explorer939, on august 16, 2011
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 450

Purchased from: Yamaha Music Centre (Sri Lanka)

Features: I bought this guitar in 2009. It came in a package titled "Gigmaker" (which is the very last word I would use for the package, as this is a completely unreliable guitar, and has failed me twice (at concerts). The package included a horrible practice amp (GA-15), a gig bag, a strap, some picks and a tuner, which isn't very accurate. I have no idea when this was made, but it seems to have been around for some time. It was made in China, but I've surfed the net and there seem to be a few models that have been made in Taiwan. The guitar has a maple neck with 22 thin frets. It has a strat-style agathis body, with a gloss black finish. The Bridge is a vintage, strat-style one as well. There is one volume pot and one tone pot. The guitar's pickup (the pickups are really bad) configuration is HSH (and I have no idea what the brand is), and the electronics are passive. The tuners are non-locking, and again I have no idea what the brand is, and, like the pickups, they are bad and cheap. // 6

Sound: It suits my aggressive style of music-appearance-wise and sound-wise. I play a lot of hard rock and metal. Guns 'N Roses, Iron Maiden, Black Sabbath to name a few.I run this guitar through a Marshall MG 30FX, and a I use a DigiTech RP355 Multi-Effects Processor. The Amp and Pedal are top-of-the-line, and thanks to them my sound has some quality. Like I said earlier, the pickups are horrible, and very noisy. This is a beginner's guitar, and therefore the guitars sound doesn't' have much variety. Tweaking the tone knob and pickup selector doesn't make much of a difference. I actually get different sounds using my pedal. // 6

Action, Fit & Finish: This guitar was well set up at the factory. It was my first electric and I was too busy staring at it in delight (it was a surprise birthday present) to think about the action, not that I knew about what it was at the time. All I know is that it was in very good condition. The pickups were adjusted well, and there were no flaws. My happiness was short-lived, as just five months later, the middle pickup broke, and there have been many more problems ever since. The Bridge gets all messed up and loose after using the whammy bar for a while. // 5

Reliability & Durability: This guitar isn't very durable, and not reliable at all. I have played live three times, and the the guitar has failed me the second and third times. The Bridge was cracked the second time, and I had to rent another one while it was being repaired. The third time was a disaster. When I plugged in the guitar, all I got was really loud feedback. I unplugged it, plugged it agin a few times but nothing happened. We changed the cables, but still all I got was noisy feedback. So in the end I had to borrow another guys guitar. So, yeah it's very unreliable. Forget about having a backup, I wouldn't use it live in the first place. It scratches easily and has a LOT of dents. // 4

Overall Impression: I play a lot of hard rock and heavy metal. And I guess this is a good match. Changing the Bridge to a Floyd Rose and popping some EMGs in would greatly improve the guitar. I've been playing for two years now, and this has been my only guitar. I have encountered quite a lot of problems with it. I like it's appearance, but I hate everything else. I'll be getting an RGX in about a week, and after that I'll be selling this guitar. I just wish this would have come with a Floyd Rose and some EMGs. As a beginner, I would have given this a 9, but as a guy who has been playing for 2 years, and has been plagued with problems, such as a cracked bridge, 2 broken pickups, a loose Bridge and tuners, I would give this a 6. // 6

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overall: 7.8
ERG121 Reviewed by: unregistered, on september 20, 2011
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: C$ 80

Purchased from: Kijiji ad

Features: I got my Yamaha erg 121 off a guy locally. He didn't seem to know much about it but I had to check it out. I fell in love with the looks / color of the body. Nice and shiny black. I did manage to read some of the reviews online for this guitar and wasn't too sure what to expect when I plugged it in. I got pretty lucky this guy threw in a nice carrying bag with a whammy bar and extra strings and even a strap for it. When I got it home and turned it on it sounded alot better than I expected. It has a nice weight to it, feels very nice the only thing I don't like about it is where the patch cord plugs in... Your going to want a guitar stand for this puppy because 10 mins after owning it I put it down on the floor and snapped the plastic piece the cord plugs into (its on the very bottom of the guitar but off to the side). Not a big deal just have to be careful when you put her down. // 8

Sound: The real surprise was when I stepped on the distortion pedal. HOLY SHIT! This thing blows my squire Strat out of the water, absolutely no comparison. Palm muting never sounded so good on my Crate amp and neither have any of my power chords. If your looking for an affordable beginner guitar and you want to play punk/grunge with a respectable sound this is a sweet axe. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: Everything seriously feels good about this guitar. I've had it for 3 weeks and haven't had to tune it again, and that's after a few of my friends tried it out and we really put it to the test. Its not as heavy as a standard squire but it still feels solid. And its a hell of a lot prettier imho. // 7

Reliability & Durability: Solid guitar. Obviously not for pros or to take to a live show. Best beginner guitar for the price that I've ever had my hands on. Strap buttons feel solid, the scratch pad takes some getting used to as its all humbucklers / pickups... Guessing that's why the sound that comes out of this thing is so impressive. I would say its dependable, I haven't had it for very long but I haven't noticed anything that concerns me about it. // 7

Overall Impression: I play this on a small Crate amp with a Boss distortion pedal. The only thing I would change on this guitar is where the patch cord plugs in (this is the only thing I like more about my squire strat). When I first picked it up I played some green day / smashing pumpkins / Radiohead / Nirvana.. And I never sounded better playing em. And I had a hard time putting this puppy down. If you find this guitar for around 100 - 150$ I wouldn't hesitate. If I were to lose my Yamah erg and could replace it for that price, I would! // 9

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overall: 6.8
ERG121 Reviewed by: princeomar, on october 20, 2011
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 250

Features: Ok... So it's a Yamaha I got it as my first guitar. So it has 22 frets which is a good thing and a one-way tremolo bar. The body has a metallic black color which catches fingerprints easily but looks really nice and impressive for showing off infront of people who don't really have an idea what you're holding. It has a five-way toggle and three pickups... Two double-coil and one single-coil. Also the guitar comes with a gigbag which is nice. // 8

Sound: I have a Roland Cube 40 XL which is giving me alot of variety from playing clean to some blues to alternative metal, speed metal and all kinds of metal. The guitar itself gives good distortion but I've heard better... Alot better. that's because the pickups are really bad. Although they are passive (which is somehow a good thing) the guitar gives alot of noise when playing specially when I'm on distortion or on high volumes (even if playing on clean). For some reason, I find that the guitar can't give good palm muting sound AT ALL... Maybe a bridge problem (and I did change the strings many times) but the bridge can withstand the dive bombs with its tremolo. // 6

Action, Fit & Finish: Well the guitar had some problems since it came... As I said noisy pickups, the pickups have to be adjusted with a screwdriver every now and then... But the bridge is well placed. And the fret buzzes are really rare. So in conclusion the factory did have some quality assurance problems when making this guitar and there was noone to test it before it was distributed. // 5

Reliability & Durability: This guitar can withstand playing among family and friends but not really big gigs. It will live on and it doesn't break easily (I've hit several times and not even a scratch). Strap buttons are well places and won't go off easily. Also the wood on the neck can last for about 3 years if you played with it daily so I think it would have done its job and more after 3 years of daily playing. // 8

Overall Impression: I play metal, hard rock and sometimes some slow stuff and this guitar meets my demands (for its price). I am planing on getting the LTD M300FM but I won't sell this guitar. I guess if it was stolen, I won't really get it again. I only respect it because it's my first guitar and withstood alot with me. // 7

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overall: 7.2
ERG121 Reviewed by: hamza hashmi, on december 20, 2012
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 110

Purchased from:

Features: The guitar was made in China, it has 22 frets and its a very thin neck with rosewood fretboard. A small Strat shaped body, by small I mean its smaller in size which adds to it's sex appeal. The bridge is a standard Vintage trem. The pickups are Yamaha pups. Pickup config h-s-h. I like the finish its really shiny the one on which you can see your reflection. The tuners are standard plasticly things. The guitar is heavy though it really requires some energy to carry it for a long time. I bought the guitar second hand so it just came with a bag. // 8

Sound: I play metal with a bit of rock and blues. The neck pickup is bassy there's a lot of base in that pup. The single coil isn't very strong but it does the job, nicely, and the neck pickup the best in the three, its pretty decent. I adjusted the pickup heights to get more gain from the guitar and it picks up legato real nicely. So its very easy to play metal on it. But it will never sound perfect but you can get a pretty decent sound out of it. I'm using it with a Zoom G2.1U and through a Ibanez IBZ3. It gives a decent sound. // 7

Action, Fit & Finish: The action was pretty nice, I tried to measure it and according to my readings its 1.7mm. Maybe it can go lower but my truss rod is out of shape. The pickups can be adjusted according to the user's playing style for high gain purposes raise the pickups heights. And no I didn't have the problems of oxidized hardware, loose tuning pegs, poorly cut nut, noisy pickup selector, lose controls. The guitar can go out of tune easily due to the bridge when used with a whammy bar. The guitar was flawless. Its a pretty decent guitar made by a decent company. // 7

Reliability & Durability: I've played with this guitar live once and it did good. Didn't do any weird stuff. The hardware seems to last, its an old guitar and I got it second hand. The strap buttons seem solid, I've used it on a live gig and I can depend on it. Oh and I've dropped it a couple of times the finish does seems to last. Its more durable than the people are saying in the other reviews. Though the last time I put on new strings I kept detuning every five minutes, I don't know if all guitars do that or is only this one doing it. // 7

Overall Impression: Its lovely combination for a beginner who prefers metal, hard rock. Its versatile as well as you can get a half decent sound out of it for blues or funk. If been playing for 1.5 years and actually its my first and only guitar, I play this through a Zoom G2.1U + Ibanez IBZ3 amp. It can give some decent tones. If it was stolen I wouldn't probably get it again because I've matured as a player. Things I like: shred neck, good pickups for the price, sexy body. Things I hate: goes out of tune, is heavy. I wish it had a double locking bridge and a better neck pickup.

// 7

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