#1
My absolute maximum budget is £1000 ($1500), for a guitar and an amp. Hoping to keep it as much under this as possible though.
The guitar needs to be new, so it's in perfect condition (I'm very sentimental and would look after it well). Wouldn't be too bothered if the amp is used. The amp would be purely for a medium sized room at home, not gigs.
If the guitar is new and the amp used, would 2/3 guitar and 1/3 amp budget split be sensible?

I currently have a Cort G250 (H-S-S, basswood, wilkinson tremolo) and a 15W Marshall amp. It's my first guitar and I'm keeping it for playing blues rock etc. Even with my Boss MT-2 distortion pedal it sounds too thin for extreme metal.

I'm after H-H pickups, to achieve distorted death metal tones (e.g. Death, Morbid Angel, Unleashed, Origin, Necrophagist). Needs a thin neck and 24 frets with good access. A tremelo wouldn't get much use (prefer to bend and my current guitar has one), so a fixed bridge is preferred.

I believe Ibanez guitars to be good value for money and I like the wizard necks. There are so many Ibanez models around, but I'm struggling to find one with good H-H pickups within my budget.

Which models would you recommend?

Thanks!
#2
The XPT700FX looks great and meets all my requirements, but no local stores have one for me to try. Also, it would be stretching my budget (£600-700ish).
Something from the RG series is more realistic. RGA72QME or RGA42E would be good (£400-500/$600-800, fixed bridge, EMG 81/85s, and I love the finishes), but they aren't available in the UK.
I could get a RGA42 (Ibanez active pickups, instead of the RGA42E's EMGs) for £300-350, or a RGR321EX/RG321MH for £250-300, but am willing to spend more if I can get more for my money.

Could a £300 RG with replaced pickups be as good as a slighlty more expensive Ibanez with good stock pickups, or would the whole guitar be worse?
Prestige exluded, are models similar quality but with different pickups and bridges?
#3
if you can tolerate a single coil in the center, you have a lot more options on the table mainly RG. you could find a Prestige 1550 or 1570 in budget used. pickups aren't great, but i haven't heard any good Ibby pickups yet. or you could find an older RG550 RG570 from the 80's that are MIJ.

the premium line looks nice, but i played a few and wasn't impressed, besides you can find a used pristege below the price.

for reference i have a 3550MZ and a 2570EVSL prestige as well.
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#4
I would say look for an older MIJ RG5xx series or an older S470. Stay away from the modern MIK models like the XPT and so on. They aren't worth the price. If you must go with an MIK Ibanez, make sure it is an older one from the early 90's. Anything made after maybe '99 is crap.
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#5
i'd try to get a j-custom

that being said i'd try to get a better amp, too. i'm assuming you have an MG.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

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#6
J-custom? Can't find these on the Ibanez website.

Yes MG15CD, and I will be replacing that Will post another thread in the gear section once I've chosen a guitar to match it to.
#7
Thanks for the suggestions
I would definitely prefer no middle single coil if possible. No opinions on any H-H RGs?

Apparently the XPTs, made in Indonesia not Korea, are better made than other non-MIJ.
#8
IF I can import a RGA72QME or RGA42E at a reasonable price:
Would a mahogany body w/ maple top and set-in neck give a better tone than a solid mahogany body and bolt-on neck? (Only significant difference between the models).
On paper the RGA42E is the worse guitar, but would the solid body and bolt-on give a heavier, snappier tone more suited to metal?

I would really appreciate help finding a store that would ship these models to the UK.
#9
Quote by ben_fairweather
Thanks for the suggestions
I would definitely prefer no middle single coil if possible. No opinions on any H-H RGs?


Apparently the XPTs, made in Indonesia not Korea, are better made than other non-MIJ.



only reason i mentioned the single coil is i bet there are three times as many HSH than HH. easier to find typically cheaper as well.
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Quote by andersondb7
alright "king of the guitar forum"


Quote by trashedlostfdup
nope i am "GOD of the guitar forum" i think that fits me better.


Quote by andersondb7
youre just being a jerk man.



****** NEW NEW NEW!
2017-07-07 2017-07-07 Update and a Chat On Noise Constraints *** NEW FRIDAY 7/7
2017-04-13 RUN AWAY from COMPUTERS!!! TCE? RANT ALERT!!!
2017-03-02 - Guitar Philosophy 1001- Be Prepared For the Situation (Thursday 2017-03-02)
2017-02-21 How to Hot-Rod the Hell of your Stratocaster for $50! (Tuesday 2017-2-21)
Resentments and Rambling from a Guitar Junkie
---> http://trashedengineering.blogspot.com/
#10
Quote by trashedlostfdup
only reason i mentioned the single coil is i bet there are three times as many HSH than HH. easier to find typically cheaper as well.


Definitely. It would also be much easier to get one with a tremolo, but I want to be able to change the tuning easily (which I've heard can be a nightmare with a cheap tremolo, especially for someone inexperienced like me).
I want to be happy with this guitar long-term, so I don't mind being fussy and putting a lot of time and effort into my decision.
Last edited by ben_fairweather at Mar 29, 2012,
#11
Quote by ben_fairweather
J-custom? Can't find these on the Ibanez website.


they're japanese-only models, on the japanese website. though i've just remembered the exchange rate versus the yen at the moment is terrible, there's no way you'd get a new one at your budget. if you're willing to go second-hand, though, they might be worth considering (and they've occasionally been available in the UK, so you might get lucky and come across one).

I know only you know how much the middle single coil annoys you, but I'd think long and hard before buying a worse guitar just because it's HH. Apart from anything, one way round it might be to get a pickguard-loaded model (e.g. rg 1550 or 550), get a new HH pickguard and just remove the single coil. An even easier way is just to lower the middle single until it's out of the way and just never use it. (assuming it can be lowered enough to actually be out of the way)
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#12
Ended up spending £550 on the whole rig:
Ibanez Xiphos (XPT700 red chameleon), (used but excellent condition)
Marshall JCM 900 100W Dual Reverb 4102, (used)
Joyo Vintage Overdrive pedal, (new)

The Xiphos is the nicest feeling guitar I've played. I tried out decent guitars from the RG, RGA, S, ART and ARZ series (+ some Schecters and Jacksons) and none quite compared, even the ones out of my price range. I was surprised how much better it is than a Jackson Warrior. I might consider upgrading the Edge III eventually, but apart from that it's a dream.
#13
^I'd work on upgrading that Edge III as fast as you can. Trems can be a hassle when they're high quality; You'll run into nothing but problems keep an EIII in there. Either block it off, or never touch the bar, at all