Yamaha puts upper-fret access on the menu with the first cutaway models in its TransAcoustic Series

Yamaha TransAcoustic FGC-TA and FSC-TA
(Image credit: Yamaha)

Yamaha has extended its TransAcoustic family with a pair of cutaway acoustic guitars joining the series. Featuring the same onboard effects and electronics, the FGC-TA and FSC-TA acoustics are the first cutaway models in the range, and are being offered in two different body sizes.

The FGC-TA has what Yamaha calls a Traditional Western-style body, which is to a say a cutaway dreadnought shape in all but name, and the FSC-TA, which has a more compact concert-size body. 

Both guitars have solid spruce tops, with mahogany on the back and sides. Yamaha has used nato – or eastern mahogany for the neck – and rosewood for the 15.75” fingerboard. So far, so very conventional, but it’s the TransAcoustic Series’ electronics that give it its USP, offering onboard reverb and chorus effects from a trio of shoulder-mounted controls.

Yamaha TransAcoustic FGC-TA and FSC-TA

(Image credit: Yamaha)

Like all models in the TransAcoustic range, the FGC-TA and FSC-TA come equipped with a System 70 preamp and an SRT Piezo pickup positioned under-saddle. The piezo transfers the guitar’s vibrations to an actuator mounted on in the interior of the guitar’s back, which then transmit them through the body of the guitar and use its frame to create natural reverb and chorusing. That's right: you don’t have to plug them into an acoustic guitar amp to enjoy the effects.  

The tech was developed by Yamaha’s acoustic piano division and has been quietly revolutionary for acoustic guitar players. No one will forget the first time the LS-TA came into the office. Check out Yamaha's introduction video below for an idea of how this sounds in practice.

The TransAcoustic tech might be very clever but luckily we don’t have to be to use it. There is one knob for chorus, one for dialling in room and hall-sized reverbs (anywhere past noon on the dial gives you hall reverb), and a line out volume control that doubles as a TransAcoustic switch. Simply hold it down for 0.3 seconds or longer and the effects come online. All this is powered by a 9V battery that’s housed in an integrated end-pin jack.

The guitars are priced £840 and are being offered in a trio of finish options. The FSC-TA is available in Vintage Tint, Brown Sunburst, and Ruby Red, while the FGC-TA comes in Vintage Tint, Brown Sunburst, and Black finishes.

See Yamaha for more details.

Jonathan Horsley

Jonathan Horsley has been writing about guitars and guitar culture since 2005, playing them since 1990, and regularly contributes to MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitar World. He uses Jazz III nylon picks, 10s during the week, 9s at the weekend, and shamefully still struggles with rhythm figure one of Van Halen’s Panama.