I bought this site unseen because of the Yamaha name and some reviews I'd read. Generally, Yamaha means quality. The action is a little high for me but can definitely be tweaked to your liking. The fit and finish is excellent. Frets have no sharp edges and the fret finish is mirror like. I'm assuming this is a factory fret job. The tone acousticaly is really even all the way up the neck. The neck radius is very comfortable almost to the electic guitar feel. It plays fast and is quite loud for a thin body acoustic/elecric. I haven't plugged it in but am assuming it will carry the same sonic traits as it does acousticaly. The tuners are smooth and are about an 18/1 ratio(Can't say for sure as I didn't count)
The low "E" buzzes a little but with new strings and a little bit of setup this would be easily fixed.
The guitar seems solid and the fit of neck to body/fret board to neck is smooth.
I would recomend this guitar to anyone. Pro or amateur looing for a decent sounding quitar. The only factory acoustic/electric that compares to this one is a $1000 Ovation that I tried out about 8 months ago. This includes some Sigmas, Gibsons, Fenders and other Ovations........For the record I am 39 years old and have been playing guitar since I was forced by my mama when I was 6.....as a full time gig for the last 12 years....
I originally bought this guitar at Music Showcase in Pa for about $450 dollars. This was about 6 years ago and up to that point was the most i'd ever payed for a guitar. Not knowing a great deal about guitars at that point, I bought it because I thought it looked nice.
I like the looks of this guitar, and it doesn't sound too bad plugged in but other that that, nothing.
Well for starters, for the price or maybe a bit more, you can get a much better guitar. When this thing isn't plugged in, it only sounds decent on a new set of strings for about a week. The guitar is also made of cheap wood and plastic and the tuners just downright suck. If your looking to spend between $450-$600 dollars, get yourself a low end martin and have it drilled out or buy an alverez. For the price Alverez makes some really great sounding guitars.
Like I said earlier, this guitar is made of cheap wood, crappy tuners and plastic. The action is relatively high and it sounds like crap when its not plugged in.
Bottom line if your going to spend the money for one of these guitars, don't. Or at least take your time and try to play some different guitars because there are many better guitars out there in this ones price range. I have since bought a Taylor 314 and its just great. But thats a whole nuther ball game.
I purchased the apx-4a at a local pawnshop in Parkersburg WV. I was looking for an acoustic-electric that would amplify well on stage without feedback problems. I originally had a kramer strat shaped acoustic on layaway at the pawnshop, but when I saw the yamaha, I convinced the manager to let me purchace it instead. I paid 250 for the guitar with a chipboard case, and immediately bought the yamaha hard case at a local music store for 100.
First of all, the Yamaha was an attractive looking guitar, especially compared to the kramer, which looked like a toy d8} - It has a tobacco sunburst finish, a cutaway, and a smaller, "martin 000" sized body. It is thin in depth, with back and sides that appeared to be an ovation style synthetic at first. Upon inspecting the interior of the guitar, it appears to be an all wood guitar with the sides and back having a black textured finish. The guitar has an under-saddle pickup, volume,treble,and bass controls on the upper bout. The knobs push to retract into the body, so once the settings are made, the electronics are very unobtrusive. The action is low, without buzzes, the intonation is excellent in all positions.the tuners are smooth and stable.
The guitar amplifies very well. Acoustically, the guitar does not compete with a good drednought for "boom", but it the balance is very nice, especially for fingerpicking and english folk playing. Once plugged in, many tonal options are available.
For some players, it might be a plain instrument. The binding is plastic, and the inlay on the headstock is painted.
It is very solid - It has been played outdoors and in clubs throughout wv and southern ohio without any problems. The only preventative maintenance has been tightening the output jack and making sure to change the battery when changing strings since you have to reach inside the soundhole and remove a small plastic box attached with velcro holding a 9volt battery. This box has come lose while playing, which can be distressing while playing, to say the least. I have seen later apx-4a's that have a battery hatch and different preamp setups incluing a mid control. The nut appears to be plastic, a bone or high quality synthetic nut would likely improve the tone.
When all is said and done, this guitar met my needs for a stage acoustic with no reservations. It is fun and comfortable to play around the house and write on. I had the opportunity to play in a local production of Tommy a few years ago, and the director loved the sound of this guitar. It sounds crisp and full, and never feeds back. I would definitely be interested in trying some of the upscale apx models.