“Its cutting-edge pickups put it beyond any guitar in its class”: Yamaha Pacifica Professional P12M review

Forget everything you know about the Pacifica: Yamaha’s new Japan-built flagship is a stunning, pro-spec electric guitar that has to be played and heard to be believed

Yamaha Pacifica Professional
(Image: © Yamaha Guitars)

Guitar World Verdict

The Yamaha Pacifica Professional is the most sophisticated Pacifica to date. It’s a flagship model with advanced chambering to enhance resonance, and cutting-edge pickups for a super-clear and ultra-wide response that put it beyond any guitar in its class.


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    Advanced chambering design maximizes resonant qualities.

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    Pickups offer an ultra-wide and clear tonal response.

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    Slim modern C neck shape.

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    Compound radius provides comfort and pitch-perfect bending. Stainless steel frets will last for a lifetime of durability.

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    Rosewood or maple fingerboard options.

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    Colorful finishes.


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You can trust Guitar World Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing guitar products so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

If there’s one thing that’s overshadowing the stellar Yamaha Pacifica Professional guitar, it’s the startling price tag. It’s difficult to shake the fact that the Pacifica – which many consider the benchmark in budget electric guitars – now arrives in a Professional version at a cost that might be slightly out of reach for most players. 

Even so, it would be a shame for that to be the only reason to overlook this thoughtfully designed Superstrat that undeniably proves it’s a world-class performance instrument through and through. 

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Paul Riario

Paul Riario has been the tech/gear editor and online video presence for Guitar World for over 25 years. Paul is one of the few gear editors who has actually played and owned nearly all the original gear that most guitarists wax poetically about, and has survived this long by knowing every useless musical tidbit of classic rock, new wave, hair metal, grunge, and alternative genres. When Paul is not riding his road bike at any given moment, he remains a working musician, playing in two bands called SuperTrans Am and Radio Nashville.