Yamaha ERG121 – More than just a beginners guitar?

Yamaha ERG121

The Yamaha ERG121 is an extremely versatile great value guitar.

If you are looking for a versatile, well built quality guitar at an affordable price then the Yamaha ERG121 should be top of your list.

Yamaha have gained a reputation for making very good guitars at amazing prices, consider the Yamaha RGX121 and Pacifica as examples of their handiwork.  These two guitars, because they are so good, often get all the attention but the Yamaha ERG121 is just as good, and in some cases is better than the Pacifica, in my opinion.

So what can you expect from the Yamaha ERG121?

The Yamaha ERG121 is firmly in the super strat mould with a basswood strat style body with deep cut-aways for easy access to the upper frets.  The body is nicely contoured, as you would expect from the style of guitar, which makes the guitar comfortable to hold and play.  There is a re-assuring feel to the guitar, it is not too heavy but you know that there is sufficient weight to it which provides a re-assuring sense of quality.  The paint job is basic but good and adds to the sense that Yamaha have not cut back on the attention to detail to produce a cheap guitar.

The 22 fret bolt on neck is made from maple and is topped with a rosewood fingerboard.  The set-up of the guitar is fine straight out of the box with the action set at a good height with no fret buzz showing it is too low.  My only criticism is that the strings on the guitar feel a bit cheap.  But that said they are fine and it won’t cost much to up-grade to a better set of strings at a later stage should you chose to do so.  The neck is comfortable to play and ideal for a beginner trying to get used to playing.

In terms of electrics this is where things start to get interesting!  The Yamaha ERG121 comes armed with two humbuckers and a single coil.  The humbuckers are in the bridge and neck position with the single coil in the middle position.  The full set of pickups options are accessed through a 5 position selector switch and there are a master volume and tone dials to give you excellent control of the sound coming out of the guitar.  The combination of the humbuckers and single coil pick-ups gives this guitar real versatility.  Equally at home with blues, rock or metal if you are looking for a guitar that gives you a wide tonal output then the Yamaha ERG121 has few challengers.  Factor in the price and this guitar is head and shoulders above the competition!

Yamaha ERG121

The Yamaha ERG121 has a vintage style tremolo which is ideal for some minor whammy bar antics!

The bridge is a vintage style tremolo which is typical of a guitar at this price point.  The tremolo allows some whammy bar antics but anything too frenetic will de-tune the guitar.  So if you are into that kind of thing you might not want to consider the Yamaha ERG121.

All in all this is a great guitar.  The build quality is excellent and the pick-up options on the Yamaha ERG121 allows you amazing scope to experiment with your sound.  For the price this is an amazing guitar and well worth giving a test play.

As an interesting aside, whilst doing a bit of research for this guitar we found that you could purchase the Yamaha ERG 121 for £195.26 through Amazon.  However, also on Amazon you can buy the same guitar as a Yamaha ERG121 guitar starter pack for an amazing £199!  With the starter pack you get the guitar, the very good GA 15 practice amp, YT100 guitar tuner, cable, gig bag, string winder and picks.  This starter pack option represents excellent value for money, contains everything you need to get started and is well worth getting for a few quid extra.

 Yamaha ERG121
Yamaha ERG121
BridgeVintage style tremolo bridge
Frets22 jumbo frets
Bridge pickupHumbucker
Middle pickupSingle coil
Neck pickupHumbucker
Pickup switching5 way selector switch
Controls1 master volume and 1 tone
Recommended retail price£233
If you love this guitarBuy it Now


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  1. James Oneill
    June 10, 2017
    • Dan
      June 11, 2017

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