Become a member
Become a member

or
Continue with Google
Log in
Log in

or
Log in using a Google account
Agrandir
Add this product to
  • Mon ancien matos
  • My current gear
  • My wishlist
Yamaha Pacifica PAC611HFM
Images
1/58

Review Yamaha Pacifica PAC611HFM

STC-Shaped Guitar de la marque Yamaha appartenant à la série Pacifica

review
Comment

Yamaha Pacifica PAC611HFM Review

Let's Sail together!
Share this article

Pacifica — a name that recalls the beach, the ocean, the sun. If you like sailing, following the wind for hours armed only with your courage and a fishing-rod, you'll be disappointed by the present review: this is not a hunting/fishing magazine! We review today a guitar designed by Yamaha Guitar Development Hollywood that has been on the market since 1990. It's been 22 since the first Pacifica came to the world and I look forward to discovering the features of the new generation. It's my ocean quest!

The Pacific-a At Your Fingertips

Yamaha Pacifica PAC611HFM

As soon as I arrived at AudioFanzine’s editorial island they gave me the instrument and I was surprised to discover that it comes inside a wonderful cardboard gigbag with Yamaha printed on it. Warning! This biodegradable protection bag will disappear with the first showers. So, I take it out of its eco-bag and discover the nice “Root Beer” (as in the plant-extract-based frizzy drink some people love to drink) finish. The translucent varnish lets you see the flamed maple top set on the alder body. The bolt-on maple neck has a glossy honey finish. The matching headstock gives a vintage feel to the guitar. The rosewood fingerboard has a 335mm radius and 22 frets. The tortoise pickguard matches the color of the guitar perfectly. It all looks really good!

Yamaha Pacifica PAC611HFM

Côté technique, les designers ont frappé fort. La tête est équipée de mécaniques

When it comes to features, Yamaha’s designers stroke a decisive blow. The headstock is equipped with locking Grover tuners and a Teflon nut ensuring reliable tuning stability and a longer lifespan for strings. For strong people, Yamaha’s team didn’t forget to exchange the standard bridge saddles with Graph Tech (Teflon) saddles. Also notice the through-body strings for better sustain. Strat-type guitars have got us used to many different pickup combinations: SSS, HSS, HSH, etc. (H = Humbucker, S = Single coil). This Pacifica offers a new combination including a P90 pickup on the neck position and a humbucker on the bridge. Let me introduce you to them. The P90 (no, it’s not a gun) is actually a Seymour Duncan SP90, described as the faithful reproduction of the first soap-bars with a fat sound and a high output level. The other pickup is an S.D.Custom 5 (the number describes the magnet type: Alnico V). In fact, it’s a custom “Classic 59's” for a more vintage sound with less distortion.

A Look Inside!

Yamaha Pacifica PAC611HFM

The outfit looks great, but how does it look inside? The rear plate is held with three screws. The wiring is reasonably clean (they forgot to use cable clamps). The quality of the potentiometers is not the highest but we appreciate the fact that Yamaha chose a polypropylene capacitor instead of a standard ceramic one.

Time to Cuddle

Yamaha Pacifica PAC611HFM

Now that we know each other better, it’s time to play with the siren from the Pacific. In spite of the maple top, the weight of the instrument is reasonable (about 6.5 lb.). Both when sitting down and standing up, the shape of the guitar matches your body, which makes it very pleasant to play. I don’t like varnished necks, so I began with some sort of a handicap, but I swore to stay objective for the review! And it was a wise decision: this neck is thin, feels pleasant and is as fast as they come. The hand slides effortlessly along the full length.

I started by playing “Wonderwall”. The guitar emphasizes high-mid frequencies, which is not surprising for an alder/maple combination. Luckily, the rosewood fingerboard brings a bit of softness to this bright sound.

Yamaha Pacifica PAC611HFM

Played unplugged, the guitar produces a dynamic sound with enough resonance. All overtones sound good, the factory setting and the action are good. It’s time to plug it in to see if it sounds as well electrified as unplugged. I power on my everlasting JTM45 (I won’t ever change my ways!) feeding a 2×12" Greenback speaker cabinet and placed a PG57 microphone in front of it. The sound and dynamics I heard unplugged are definitely there. Both pickups reproduced pretty well the nuances of my playing. The midrange is emphasized, which is something you’ll either like or not at all. If you’re looking for a modern sound, don’t even bother looking this direction because this beauty is made for vintage blues/rock. By boosting the gain of the amp I could play “Cocaine” and “Paint it Black”. The tone control is a push-pull pot allowing you to split the humbucker and get the bright sound of a single coil.

I also plugged the guitar to a Mesa Boogie F50 (2-channel tube amp) to see how it deals with modern amps… and it passed the test successfully! With the clean channel, the P90 produces a quite warm sound. With a little bit of reverb, this sound is perfect for Clapton-style arpeggios. With the drive channel, I like the biting tone of the bridge pickup. The coil-split function is very useful because the Custom 5 emphasizes low frequencies. You can use the push-pull to switch between rhythm and lead sound: the tone becomes warmer and slightly louder.

 

cleanneck
00:0000:19
  • cleanneck00:19
  • cleanmid00:19
  • cleanbri00:20
  • cleanbripush00:19
  • satumanche00:17
  • satumilieu00:17
  • satuchevalet00:17
  • satuchevaletpush00:17

Both plugged and unplugged, it was a real pleasure to play this guitar. The thin neck and the simple controls make it easily accessible.

Conclusion

This Pacifica PAC611HFM is a good surprise for the beginning of 2012. Its versatility will allow you to play anything from ballads to hard rock, blues, Californian, ska, and much more. Unfortunately for fans of heavy metal, fat distortion and modern sounds, this guitar is not for you. Like every other good thing, quality has a price, and the beauty is not cheap. As a consequence, we would like to get a real gigbag with it.

Pros
  • Finish
  • Design
  • Sound
  • Locking tuners
  • Teflon nut and saddles
Cons
  • No gigbag

Would you like to comment this article?

Log in
Become a member
cookies
We are using cookies!

Yes, Audiofanzine is using cookies. Since the last thing that we want is disturbing your diet with too much fat or too much sugar, you'll be glad to learn that we made them ourselves with fresh, organic and fair ingredients, and with a perfect nutritional balance. What this means is that the data we store in them is used to enhance your use of our website as well as improve your user experience on our pages and show you personalised ads (learn more). To configure your cookie preferences, click here.

We did not wait for a law to make us respect our members and visitors' privacy. The cookies that we use are only meant to improve your experience on our website.

Our cookies
Cookies not subject to consent
These are cookies that guarantee the proper functioning of Audiofanzine and allow its optimization. The website cannot function properly without these cookies. Example: cookies that help you stay logged in from page to page or that help customizing your usage of the website (dark mode or filters).
Google Analytics
We are using Google Analytics in order to better understand the use that our visitors make of our website in an attempt to improve it.
Advertising
This information allows us to show you personalized advertisements thanks to which Audiofanzine is financed. By unchecking this box you will still have advertisements but they may be less interesting :) We are using Google Ad Manager to display part of our ads, or tools integrated to our own CMS for the rest. We are likely to display advertisements from our own platform, from Google Advertising Products or from Adform.

We did not wait for a law to make us respect our members and visitors' privacy. The cookies that we use are only meant to improve your experience on our website.

Our cookies
Cookies not subject to consent

These are cookies that guarantee the proper functioning of Audiofanzine. The website cannot function properly without these cookies. Examples: cookies that help you stay logged in from page to page or that help customizing your usage of the website (dark mode or filters).

Google Analytics

We are using Google Analytics in order to better understand the use that our visitors make of our website in an attempt to improve it. When this parameter is activated, no personal information is sent to Google and the IP addresses are anonymized.

Advertising

This information allows us to show you personalized advertisements thanks to which Audiofanzine is financed. By unchecking this box you will still have advertisements but they may be less interesting :) We are using Google Ad Manager to display part of our ads, or tools integrated to our own CMS for the rest. We are likely to display advertisements from our own platform, from Google Advertising Products or from Adform.


You can find more details on data protection in our privacy policy.
You can also find information about how Google uses personal data by following this link.