Yamaha GigMaker Electric Guitar Pack Review 2021 – Before You Buy

Yamaha GigMaker Electric Guitar Pack Review 2021 – Best Starter Pack

Reviewer: Teemu Suomala

Sound
Playability
Amp
Accessories
Quality
Value for Money

Summary

Pros
-Really high value for the money
-Guitar sounds great
-Guitar feels comfortable and easy to play
-Good sounding amp with nice features
-Instructional DVD gets you started
-Almost everything is good in this pack, the only exception is….

Cons
-…the guitar cable. It’s not so good.
-Not the best option for really heavy distortion

In my opinion, this is the best beginner electric guitar pack. The reason for this is an excellent price-quality ratio, great guitar, and amp.

The only really weak aspect of this pack is the guitar cable. And maybe, if you want to play heavy stuff and love the warm and thick sound, the Epiphone Les Paul pack with 2 humbuckers is the better option…

This guitar pack has been available for 10 years. The reason is this: they got it right the first time and it has been a high-quality pack since. My favorite electric guitar pack for beginners.

4.3

How Yamaha GigMaker Electric Guitar Pack Sounds:

YouTube video

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Yamaha GigMaker Electric Guitar Pack has been around for years, and many beginners have decided to start their guitar journey with it. But is really a good choice? Is the GigMaker pack worth your money?

Yamaha GigMaker Electric Guitar Pack includes:

  • Yamaha PAC012 Pacifica guitar(with whammy bar)
  • 2-channel Drive guitar amp, Yamaha GA 15 II
  • gig bag
  • Digital chromatic tuner
  • Cable
  • Instruction DVD
  • Strap
  • extra strings
  • Picks

photo reveals owner of guitaristnextdoor.com

Author: Teemu Suomala

I first grabbed guitar in 2009. I started this website in January 2020 because I couldn’t do window installation anymore due to my health problems. I also noticed that most guitar websites don’t do a really good job, so I decided to just go for it! I got lucky and managed to get awesome people to help me with my website. I also got lucky because I have you visiting my website right now. Thank you. I do all this for you guys. If you have any recommendations, tips, or feedback, just leave a comment, I would love to chat with you. I have been fortunate to produce content for several large guitar websites, such as Songsterr, Musicnotes, GuitarGuitar, and Ultimate Guitar. I spend my spare time exercising and hanging out with my wife and crazy dog(I guess that went the right way…).


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Yamaha GigMaker Electric Guitar Pack Review

photo displays Yamaha pacifica 012
Beautiful Yamaha Pacifica 012 I had.

Sound

With two single coils and a humbucker, this guitar can produce a lot of different tones from spanky blues to fast hard rock. If you want to play really heavy stuff, this guitar slightly loses for most of the two humbucker beginner guitars. Still, this guitar is really versatile, you’re definitely not going to be stuck inside one genre with this Pacifica.

I did not have any problems with sound(tested this guitar in my home and listened to a lot of sound demos). Yamaha can surely make a good-sounding guitar. Single-coils are a bit less bright than with Squier starts for example. This is not a con, but ask yourself which you like more, iconic bright tones of Squier or a bit more balanced tones of Yamaha?

Someone(I didn’t) can notice a little buzz in a sound. But the reason for that is probably the guitar cable which comes with the pack(it’s not good).

To me, this is a really versatile and good-sounding rock guitar.

I rented the guitar (Yamaha Pacifica 012) that this pack includes recently and made several videos about it. Here you can check the in-depth review:

YouTube video

If you want to see more videos, just go to Youtube, and search: ”Guitarist next door Yamaha Pacifica 012” and enjoy!

Playability

Out of to box action(distance between strings and fretboard) is pretty low and this makes this guitar easy to get started with. And with saddle adjustments, you can tune the action according to your liking easily.

The fretboard radius is 13 3/4″ (350mm), so it doesn’t have much curve at all. This makes moving your hand around the fretboard easy.

Nut width is only 1.614″(41mm), so the neck is narrow, and this is one reason why this guitar is easy to play and beginner-friendly (great for kids and teens too). But if you are buying a guitar for a really small kid, a smaller 3/4 sized guitar might still be a better choice.

The neck is also really comfortable. It has a versatile & round C shape and the edges are not too sharp and the guitar feels comfortable to play. The back of the neck feels smooth and the upper fret access is really solid too.

This is also not the heaviest beginner guitar. And because of this, I wouthis is a good guitar for a kid who wants to start rocking.

Quality

My experiences with Yamaha guitar have always been good. For example, my C40 Classical guitar still plays like a charm after 11 years. But what about this PAC012?

When doing research, I found out that some people even buy used Yamaha PAC012 Pacifica guitars. These bad boys are that durable. The overall finish is excellent for the price, and I’m pretty sure that you can’t find better quality when buying a beginner guitar.

In my copy of a Pacifica 012, there were some minor finish issues, you can learn more about those from my in-depth Yamaha Pacifica 012 review.

But I can’t find any major flaws from this guitar when I look at it from the beginner standpoint. Tuning stability is a bit over the average when compared to other models at this price range and there was no need to constantly tune this guitar.

Looks

PAC012 looks similar to the original Stratocaster but has slightly bigger curves. Personally, I like the looks of the original Stratocaster more, but this is no game-breaker. I also think that some colors just don’t fit this body shape so well(white). Black is my favorite color for this guitar, although these are only my personal preferences.

Amp

The pack comes with Yamaha’s own 15-watt, 2-channel Drive guitar amp, and this amp gets points from me. I’m so glad that Yamaha included a decent amp to this pack.

Amp performs well with both channels and gives you all that you need from a beginner guitar amp. It includes nice equalization features for beginners, so you can dial the tones according to your preferences easily.

Some say that the amp has a slight buzzing sound in it, this might be due to the single-coil pickups of the guitar or if a high volume is used. But there is a high chance that the guitar cable that comes with the pack is the reason for this buzzing too.

You can plug headphones to this amp too. It also has AUX input, so you can easily jam with your favorite songs.

If you want to hear how this amp sounds, watch this video(note that in this video, a different guitar is used. You still get a good idea of how the amp sounds tho):

YouTube video

Accessories

Picks=decent. These will get you started, but I personally can’t imagine myself playing with any other pick than Dunlop Max-Grip Nylon Jazz III. I recommend that you try out those at some point.

The Gigbag could be a little more protective, but it’s not too bad either. It got you covered against small bumps and dust.

The Tuner handles the job. No major problems with it. The same applies to the guitar strap, of course, it’s not the most comfortable, but it is not weak like in some packs.

The instructional DVD will get you started. It’s great for beginners, but it should be time for Yamaha to upgrade for a digital guide.

Also, I think that this post does an even better job of kickstarting your guitar career: How to Play Guitar? Get Started Fast and Free!

Extra strings are a nice plus too, although the strings are not the best in quality or feel.

The Guitar cable is pretty bad. It’s definitely the worst aspect of this guitar pack. It can cause some buzzing sound and I recommend that you replace the cable as soon as possible.  This post helps you with that: Best Guitar Cable Under $20 in 2022 – Buyer’s Guide.

Summary

Pros

  • Really high value for the money
  • Guitar sounds great
  • Guitar feels comfortable and easy to play
  • Good sounding amp with nice features
  • Instructional DVD gets you started
  • Almost everything is good in this pack, the only exception is….

Cons

  • …the guitar cable. It’s not so good.
  • Not the best option for really heavy distortion

In my opinion, it’s the best beginner electric guitar pack. The reason for this is an excellent price-quality ratio, great guitar, and amp. I speak from experience because I run this Pacifica guitar through my in-depth testing in 2021.

The only really weak aspect of this pack is the guitar cable. And maybe, if you want to play heavy stuff and love the warm and thick sound, Epiphone Les Paul pack with 2 humbuckers is the better option…

This guitar pack has been available for 10 years. The reason is this: they got it right the first time. And it has been a high-quality pack since then. Great starter pack for a beginner.

Check Latest Prices on:


Alternatives

Runner-Up – Squier Affinity Stratocaster Beginner Pack

If you are more of an original Stratocaster guy or gal, this fender pack is a solid option.

Fender is known for its great guitars that are a pleasure to play. And for a beginner, this Squier pack offers some of that Fender magic. Great sounding and easy to play guitar, solid amp and 3-months Fender play learning for free. The guitar also offers slightly brighter tones than the Yamaha Pacifica 012.

You can read my full review of this guitar pack here: Squier Affinity Stratocaster Beginner Pack Review 2022 – Before You Buy.

Yamaha GigMaker pack is better in my opinion because it offers more value for the money (this Squier pack is around 100 bucks more expensive).  But this pack is still a good choice for some players.

Check Latest Prices on:


Best Les Paul Pack – Epiphone Les Paul Electric Guitar Player Pack

If you are into heavier stuff or you just love Les Paul- type guitars, this pack is a solid choice. The guitar is fun to play, plus you get thick and great-sounding humbucker tones. Note that upper fret access is a little bit worse with Les Paul-type guitars, and this is no exception. But still, crunchy riffs and rock solos are made for this guitar.

An amplifier that comes with this guitar pack is slightly worse than the amp coming with the Yamaha pack, but this Epi pack is still a great option for Les Paul and metal lovers.

You can read my full review of this guitar pack here: Epiphone Les Paul Electric Guitar Player Pack Review 2022 – Before You Buy.

Check Latest Prices on:


Conclusion

There is no way around it, Yamaha GigMaker is my favorite beginner guitar pack. If I were a beginner and looking for a starter pack, this would be my pick. But those 2 alternative packs I mentioned are also great choices.

Starter packs are a really good option for beginners. If you want to learn more about starter packs and beginner gear, check out these posts I made:

If you want to kickstart your guitar journey with the ”post I wish I had when I started”, check this guide I crafted: How to Play Guitar? Get Started Fast and Free!

I hope that this post helped you out! If you have any questions, leave a comment down below and feel free to share this post too. I wish you all the best and keep rocking!

Teemu Suomala

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