Yamaha reveals its new flagship acoustic guitar with the FS9

Yamaha FS9
(Image credit: Yamaha)

Yamaha's acoustic guitar legacy is continuing with the reveal of its new flagship acoustic model, the FS9. The high-end Japanese-made guitar follows the dreadnought FG9 and is available it two iterations, the FS9 R (an Indian rosewood body) and FS9 M (African mahogany body). And the concert-sized model is being touted as an ideal companion for singer-songwriters.

At $6,780 and $6,620 for the FS9 R and FS9 M, respectively, they also represent a serious investment. Though street prices are already coming in significantly under those figures at around $4,100 and $4,000. 

Yamaha | FS9 Acoustic Guitars - YouTube Yamaha | FS9 Acoustic Guitars - YouTube
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The FS9 features Adirondack spruce tops with tapered edges, said to provide structural strength while allowing the body to vibrate more efficiently.

That idea carries forward with the decision to combine bolt-on and glued construction with the neck join. Not only does Yamaha claim it increases the body vibration of the FS9, but it improves maintainability – allowing the neck to be removed if necessary.

Yamaha FS9

(Image credit: Yamaha)

The Japanese aesthetic is showcased in details including the fingerboard inlays that resemble traditional Kumiki woodworking and the rope-shaped inlay and purfling of the rosette.

Yamaha FS9

(Image credit: Yamaha)

Tonally, the FS9 aims for "strong projection and clear top end" that is ideal for articulate arpeggios when accompanying vocalists. While the rounded V-shaped neck semi-gloss polyurethane for smooth playing, the body's thin nitro finish to minimise the impairment finishes can have on vibrations. 

Yamaha FS9

(Image credit: Yamaha)
  • For more information visit Yamaha and Sweetwater . Check out the FS9 in action with artists David Ryan Harris and Sophia James below. 
Yamaha FS9 M | Fingerpicking Sound Sample - YouTube Yamaha FS9 M | Fingerpicking Sound Sample - YouTube
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Yamaha FS9 M | Strumming Sound Sample - YouTube Yamaha FS9 M | Strumming Sound Sample - YouTube
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Yamaha FS9 R | Strumming Sound Sample - YouTube Yamaha FS9 R | Strumming Sound Sample - YouTube
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Yamaha FS9 R | Fingerpicking Sound Sample - YouTube Yamaha FS9 R | Fingerpicking Sound Sample - YouTube
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David Ryan Harris | “Turn Around” | Yamaha FS9 M - YouTube David Ryan Harris | “Turn Around” | Yamaha FS9 M - YouTube
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Sophia James | “You Haven’t Changed At All” | Yamaha FS9 R - YouTube Sophia James | “You Haven’t Changed At All” | Yamaha FS9 R - YouTube
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Rob Laing
Guitars Editor, MusicRadar

I'm the Guitars Editor for MusicRadar, handling news, reviews, features, tuition, advice for the strings side of the site and everything in between. Before MusicRadar I worked on guitar magazines for 15 years, including Editor of Total Guitar in the UK. When I'm not rejigging pedalboards I'm usually thinking about rejigging pedalboards.