AEG10E Review

manufacturer: Ibanez date: 12/02/2010 category: Acoustic Guitars
Ibanez: AEG10E
The Fishman Sonicore pickup and Ibanez AEQ-SST Shape Shifter preamp with onboard tuner provide premium acoustic tone and tuning ease.
 Sound: 8
 Overall Impression: 8.7
 Reliability & Durability: 7.3
 Action, Fit & Finish: 8.3
 Features: 8
 Overall rating:
 8.6 
 Reviewer rating:
 8.1 
 Users rating:
 9.1 
 Votes:
 64 
reviews (3) pictures (1) 21 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 8
AEG10E Reviewed by: Hakael, on may 01, 2009
5 of 5 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 299.99

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Features: Nowhere can I find any information in regards to whether or not this is a solid spruce or laminate spruce top. I've heard many tout that it's a laminate top, but I have not been able to confirm from anything specific (at least from Ibanez themselves). Also, according to what information I got with the swing tags, this came strung with D'Addario EXP strings. The AEG body style is a slimmer, dreadnaught shape. For the cost, admittedly I would have hoped for a little more, such as name brand tuners, or even a gig bag, but that's just a small complaint from my penny pinching side. // 7

Sound: Because of the AEG body style, the sound isn't as pronounced and you lose a lot of bottom end acoustically that you would normally get with a full-sized dreadnaught. It seems brighter, but still sounds pleasant to the ears without being too shrill. The lighter sound is expected, considering the smaller body so it wasn't a surprise. Plugging the guitar into an amp is where this guitar shines. The onboard EQ is very responsive, with the Phase button noticeably able to help cancel feedback. You get back that full, dreadnaught sound and with the help of the onboard EQ or amp controls (depending on the amp), you can easily make up for the lack of bottom end that the guitar has acoustically. It's almost an entirely different guitar when plugged in. So acoustically, it sounds OK. Perfectly fine when practicing on your own, or for just having fun with friends. If you're planning on seriously performing though and tone is important, plug it in, even if it's just to a small amp on the clean setting. The change can be surprising. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar was surprisingly setup nicely right out of the box (I had opted for one out of the box, after a good inspection). Neck was perfectly straight, surprisingly low action for an Acoustic, and with very little buzz. An adjustment to the neck would probably be needed to fully get rid of the very light buzzing, but it would be a very minor adjustment. There were no "sawtooth" fret edges. The finish was nice and even with nice little adornments (abalone rosette, pearl markers, and cream white binding). I didn't notice any particular flaws on the guitar, at least none worth any noting. // 9

Reliability & Durability: This is definitely a performer's guitar. Fishman is well known for their Acoustic pickups, and this guitar definitely shines when plugged in. The strap buttons seem quite solid. The finish does seem quite thin, so lots and lots of hard playing could very well wear the finish down quite quickly, but without having had it long enough to see, that would just be simple speculation. The guitar definitely seems solidly built and I would expect it to perform, and withstand Live playing like any other Acoustic. Like any guitar, I wouldn't care how "quality" it would be, I would always consider gigging with a backup. // 8

Overall Impression: I was actually quite impressed with this guitar. I didn't have much experience with acoustics and having played mainly electric, I very much enjoyed the fact that this felt very close to the electrics I normally would play. The slim AEG body makes it much more comfortable to play than a full size dreadnaught and the strap peg placement further gives it the "electric" feel. The neck is nice and slim in comparison to other acoustics and doesn't have the "big" feel. I was also surprised by how low the action was. Many of the acoustics I tried had an action that was much, much higher, and pretty much what I had expected an Acoustic to be. I'm sure with a proper setup, many of the other guitars could have had their action lowered, but this one was nice and low, right out of the box. Of course, due to the smaller shape, there's a compromise in Acoustic tone as stated above, but if it's just being used to practice on, that's hardly an issue. When tone DOES become an issue, and you feel you're ready to start performing with it, plugging it into an amp unleashes the guitar's true potential. Again, the smaller shape makes it a lot easier to handle on stage, making for much more comfort and, personally, ease of play. I definitely would get this guitar again if it were lost or stolen. It's fun to play, not too ungainly, and sounds surprisingly nice when plugged in. // 8

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overall: 8.2
AEG10E Reviewed by: lotechrules, on august 17, 2010
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 255

Purchased from: GC

Features: According to the serial number, made after 2008. Since I just bought it, I'm gonna figure this year. Made in China (what isn't?). Ibanez says the wood is laminated and close inspection bears this out. Makes it almost impervious to humidity changes. Great Fishman electronics with TMB EQ, phase switch, adjustable notch filter, and a built-in tuner that's almost as accurate as my pedal. Tuning machines are total crap; changed them out immediately. One big plus is having upgraded nut and saddle materials to a Tusq-like hard phenolic. Probably the best feature of this guitar is its body design-roughly a Classical body style and size, except only a little over 3 inches deep. This all by itself makes it infinitely easier to play than a dread. // 8

Sound: Used to own a Taylor dread-sold it after about a year. Don't get me wrong, Taylor's sound great, play great, and are made great. Just not my style: too loud acoustically, too boomy and in-your-face, inadequate preamp controls. Seems like everyone who doesn't like the Ibanez unplugged thinks the dread sound is the way an Acoustic should sound. Personally, I like something a little more personal. And through my tube amp, it's the best sounding, most versatile A/E I've ever played. Every control on the preamp brings something new to the table. Unplugged it's still pretty good. // 9

Action, Fit & Finish: Great neck: straight, thin, narrow; think electric. Set up well even off the GC wall with low action, very little relief and almost no string buzz. Strung with D'Addario EXP 12's and played well, but I've since changed to 11's. A few finish overruns onto the neck binding, but overall a beautifully executed instrument. Really like the little trim features: abalone rosette and headstock inlay, cream-colored binding, and pearl fretboard dots. Had to rub some of the fingerboard stain off with conditioner-it was kind of cheap looking. // 8

Reliability & Durability: While the laminated woods used might reduce the resonance and volume, they make it MUCH stronger than solid wood. I make furniture-laminate is way more stable in a sheet than solid. Like I said, the tuners are probably the cheapest I have ever seen. Fortunately, I had a spare set hanging around that fit without any drilling and made the tuning much more consistant. Changed the strap buttons to StrapLocks 'cause that's what I use, but the originals seemed good enough. Might put a clear pickguard on to protect the kinda thin finish. Feels light, but strong. // 7

Overall Impression: Play rock, punk, alt, emo. Does it all from Stones to Shinedown, Green Day to Puddle of Mudd. Probably would suck for bluegrass and folk, but that's what dreadnoughts are for. Only Acoustic I own or need, but have several electrics, couple of tube amps, buncha pedals. Would replace it in a heartbeat if lost or stolen. Very comfortable to play either standing or sitting. Hated the tuners, loved the preamp, including the built-in tuner. Not a beginner or an expert, but I've played a lot of guitars. This one's a keeper. // 9

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overall: 8
AEG10E Reviewed by: eljono123, on december 02, 2010
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 320

Purchased from: Guitar Center - Charlotte

Features: Brand new out of the box. It has a solid black finish with a cream edge around the body and along the neck. Has the regular bass, treb. And mid.. along with shape on the electronics adjustments. I normally just leave it all 50% and adjust it with the main board. Has a built in tuner which I frikking LOVE. Small body. Fishman electronics. // 9

Sound: It has a metallic sound. It sounds really good when played softly but can get a bit clangy when strummed harder ( which I have a tendency to do lol )but for the price, it sounds really clean and strong. I don't feel like I am missing anything from this type of body style. // 7

Action, Fit & Finish: I have not changed the action. The only time I have any issue is when I buzz the 5th string but I tend to play a lot more barre chords than normal Acoustic players. Right out of the box, this guitar was ready to kick ass.. I had no issues or adjustments that I had to make before plugging it up and jamming. None of the frets were jacked up out of the box though. Straight from the factory was excellent. // 8

Reliability & Durability: Hell yes this guitar will do it. Trust me, if it can with stand my bottom 3 string strumming without popping a string or going out of tune, it's all good :D The only negative review I could find on it was that a few people had their hardware go out after about a year or so .. but they had it replaced free of charge with no problems. I have had mine right at a year and have had no problems what so ever. Strap buttons are solid as it can be. I have played a lot on this thing during morning services and long practices and have had no tuning problems at all. The only place I will knock it for durability will be where the paint around the opening has peeled a little where I strum a lot. not onto the body but just around the opening. No biggie though. I don't give a shit about looks as long as it sounds good, but some people might not like that. // 7

Overall Impression: I did a lot of research before I bought this guitar. I wanted to stay cheap, and still get a %500 sounding guitar.. and I found it. I talked the guy down at Guitar World so I got this and the case and some straps for like $420 total. I would definitely suggest this to someone else and I'm glad I started off with it instead of going and blowing a shit load of money on a Martin or Taylor instead of starting of small and working my way up. I truly believe everyone should start off with a piece of shit and work their way up. This is obviously not a piece of shit but it is a step on the ladder. Far from where I have come and closer to where I want to be. Bottom line is.. For the money... Ibanez has it on lock. // 9

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