So, I fell in love with a guitar. Not an unusual happenstance, but I’m not sure why. I searched on Andertons for “purple” in the guitars, because purple, and the Pacifica one leapt out at me.
I don’t know why, I don’t like the look of P90 pickups one bit (unless they’ve been disguised as a PAF humbucker) and I’ve never been drawn to strat shaped guitars.
As is usual in these circumstances I set up an eBay search to keep me alerted
of any cheap ones that might appear and when looking around I also discovered the 311 series. Which, apart from the translucent paintwork, look identical.
Going by my guide on Yamaha Pacifica numbering it’s understandable why. The 3/6 being a guide to quality and the two 1s following indicating a humbucker and a single coil configuration. H meaning hardtail and FM at the end means flame maple. So that’s that…
But wait? What’s the actual differences 🙂
The Yamaha website states that “With the looks, feel and versatility of PAC611HFM built in as standard…” at the start of the 311H article! Well, thanks, that clears that up.
Let’s start with where they are equal. They both feature a bolt-on neck, 25.5″ scale length, rosewood fingerboard, same radius neck, 22 frets and an alder body (with the 611 sporting the flamed maple laminate top). They also both offer the same Grover Locking Tuners, 3 way switch, master volume and master tone (offering a coil split push/pull toggle).
So far, so the same. Down to the I-can’t-decide-if-it-is-horrendous tortoise shell pick guard.
So the differences seem to lay in two places, the bridge on both is a hard-tail one but the 611 has a Graph Tech String Saver Saddle. Not really enough to get excited about. So it’s the pickups then?
311 has Alnico P-90 and Humbucker, where the 611 has a Seymour Duncan SP90-1n and a Custom 5 TB-14 humbucker.
I guess then it depends whether at £640 you think it is worth the extra £300 for the flame maple top and some fancier Seymour Duncan pickups (which cost around £150 together and you’ll have to fit them).
Damn, I think I’ve just talked myself out of the 611… but… translucent purple with a colour matched headstock!
611HFM comes in Translucent Black, Translucent Purple, Root Beer and a Light Amber burst
311H comes in Black, Vintage White, Red Metallic, Yellow Natural Satin