EW20ASE Review

manufacturer: Ibanez date: 07/30/2009 category: Acoustic Guitars
Ibanez: EW20ASE
The Ibanez EW20ASE is the first EW Exotic Wood acoustic-electric instrument! This amazing instrument features a figured ash top, back and sides, plus an Ibanez B-Band SQR pickup with a powerful AEQ-SRT Shape Shifter preamp that features an onboard guitar tuner. The guitar sounds dramatically louder, and bigger in tone than the same guitar without Sound Expand construction.
 Sound: 9
 Overall Impression: 8.7
 Reliability & Durability: 9.3
 Action, Fit & Finish: 8.7
 Features: 9
 Overall rating:
 8.7 
 Reviewer rating:
 8.9 
 Users rating:
 8.5 
 Votes:
 50 
 Views:
 18,313 
reviews (3) 20 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 10
EW20ASE Reviewed by: midimcnasty, on april 04, 2008
3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 379

Features: Chinese made 2006. The Chinese seem to have done what the Japanese did in the '80s to '90s. Which is turn the corner from making "cheap Toys" and "cheap low quality electronics" to making quality products. When was the last time you heard someone this decade say "I wouldn't own that cheap Sony Japanese HD TV. What a piece of crap that Samsung/Onkyo/ insert your favorites electronics manufacturer here, 1000W surround receiver is!" Acoustic Electric with a B-Band acoustic pickup with built in tuner. Included a hard case, extra set up strings. Very attractive guitar. The looks are what first attracted me, then I picked it up, played and became a believer. // 10

Sound: It was setup at the shop already and sounded great right off the rack. I have owned it for a year now and, and finally have got around to writing this review. Owning it for a year, I have just become more attached to it, as its sound has only improved. All guitars could benefit from a setup (especially with a major string gauge chance ect, but the ones I played prior to purchasing mine all sounded pretty good with the factory setup. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: As mentioned above, the store had already set this up prior to purchase, I played a ton of them from GC and other local stores, all sounded great (and most were just from box to shelf like GC does) but having it setup for a slightly lower action made this particular guitar just sing. I spent two months shopping and trying out similar priced acoustics in by far this was the best value. All the EW20ASE I played were great even without a setup, the slim neck makes them feel more like an electric, it might be a good choice for a lady as the neck and relatively low action make it snap to play. // 10

Reliability & Durability: Now that I have owned this for a year, and being my primary choice for practicing, I can say this has held up well. I practice or noodle five days a week. I can't say this would hold up to performance and touring well, as I don't do that regularly, also I enjoy this guitar so much I treat it better than my others. // 10

Overall Impression: I play all styles from classic rock to eighties, to classical, and flamenco. I also own Ibanez AS75TSB (great jazz, alternative box, but I am not in love with it as much as the EW), Fender Deluxe Players Strat, ESP LTD M1000 (good metal machine), 72 Harmony acoustic (unbelievable cheap Chinese rubbish, a far cry from the quality Ibanez is putting out with there new Chinese boxes). I compared a good deal before I purchase this last march, now that I have played it for a year, added another guitar to my collection since then, and play another host of acoustics in the process, I would jump off a building if this was lost or stolen. My only consolation is that it is mass produced Chinese, so I would be able to find a replacement without having to get a second mortgage on the house. I have goofed around on a few martins that are indefinitely superior to this(better components, materials, and hence better tone), but they all start in the 3k range, not the 300 range. A great value guitar, excellent choice for a beginner or intermediate player looking for a all around player that is not irreplaceable. // 10

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overall: 9
EW20ASE Reviewed by: oggiedoggy, on march 20, 2009
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 350

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Features: 2007 ish model. 20 frets. It comes with nothing. Guitar center through in a nice fuzzy green, tight fitting case for me. Figured Ash body. Out of the two of these that were in-store one was absolutely gorgeous and the other. So-so. I obviously picked the uglier one /sarcasm. But kidding aside the flame pattern varies widely from guitar to guitar but that's probably a given. Coming from a strat, the neck seems more full and thick. This is good in my book. IMO much more playable. Action was set up very well. Semi useless cutaway. Those high frets could make you contort uncomfortably, especially on the low strings. The high ones are bearable. It is fairly similar to a les paul except the body is about 2-3x thicker making it similar to holding onto a beach ball. The body has a curve in it that you can sort of reach your picking arm through if you tilt the neck up at a high angle. This makes reaching around the huge body less of a struggle. I haven't really used it plugged in hardly at all (after 1.5+ years even), so I can't really be a good judge of this guitar in that respect, but I have used the guitar's preamp plugged straight into my Zoom HD16 and gotten some good tones out of it. // 8

Sound: IMO accoustic guitars come in two flavors. The first is the kind of trebley/jangly type - think your typical $50 dollar dreadnought. The second kind is the full/more bassey kind - that is what this guitar is. If you spend a good majority of your time fingerpicking this guitar may not have enough edge for you as it leans towards being mellow and full. When played with a pick (or a well angled fingernail) it sounds very rich and full. Put it this way, if you get a more "dark" flavored accoustic, you can always pick closer to the bridge or change your pick angle and easily brighten it up. By changing your playing nuances this guitar can cover many different sounds - a big plus in my book. // 9

Action, Fit & Finish: Action was very nice by default. Intonation was excellent all the way up. The finish was the most beautiful thing I'd ever seen at that time (and is still up there). Just about the only thing that I might be able to find fault with it is that the nut could use a teensy bit of filing to make the first fret a bit easier to push down. Maybe. I'm not around the guitar right now and am going by memory of the long history I've had with this guitar. For some reason that one detail has evaded me. // 10

Reliability & Durability: The guitar is huge! And by that I mean you'll bump into stuff when you move around. I am careful, too. It's just huge and it's going to happen unless you play outside in a meadow. The knicks don't show up too bad really. They are more like smudges you can wipe away. I bet it could take a few shows. The strap stays locked on nicely and the guitar doesn't move around on me. I use a thick leather strap though so if you like thin straps check 'em out with it first and see if it works for you. // 9

Overall Impression: I got this guitar after having played guitar for about a year and a half. I wasn't very good then and was drawn to the fullness this guitar provided for me. I felt like I was making some good sound when I quite frankly sucked. Now, a couple years later, I have been playing for about 3 years total. I finally learned some rhythm and I still love this guitar and am very glad I chose it. I doubt I will get another accoustic guitar for a very long time. Maybe a Taylor T5 someday. Those are sexy. // 9

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overall: 7.8
EW20ASE Reviewed by: unregistered, on july 30, 2009
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 225

Purchased from: Ebay

Features: Mine was made in 2009, so it is the newest model available. The body is made out of Ash wood and the neck is made out of mahogany. It has ivory binding on the neck and around the body of the guitar. The fretboard and the bridge is made out of rosewood and it has a "signature" inlay on the 12th fret. // 9

Sound: It sounds pretty good, not great though. The stock strings are very poor. A new set of strings is a must. I recommend Dean Markley's. It kind of has a sound between bright and warm but slightly towards bright. I get some fret buzz on the 13th and 14th fret even with proper string height and neck setup. I'm not sure if it's just mine or if it applies to all of them though. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: The action in my opinion is slightly high and the neck was not properly adjusted when I recieved my guitar. The strings were poor and I got some fret buzz on the 13th and 14th fret after proper adjustments. I could also feel the binding protruding around the neck joint, although, that could be due to the hot weather and the guitar not being cared for properly from the shipper/during shipping. Other than that, everything else was perfect. // 6

Reliability & Durability: It is very well built. The hardware is ok. I would perform with this guitar without a backup. I am not giving it a 10 because I feel that the electronic parts could have been much better. They aren't bad but I am slightly worried that they could fail. Plus the b-band buttons move around too easily. // 9

Overall Impression: Overall, the guitar is very well built and the natural wood finish is very nice. If only the action/fit/finish was better, it would be a perfect guitar. I purchased it new on ebay for $225.00USD. With shipping it came to about $300.00CAN (I'm from Canada). For the price I paid, it was a great deal. I would not purchase this guitar Brand New at a local music store though. the last time I checked, they go for about $500-600 canadian and about $400-500 american. If I broke it or if it was stolen, I would purchase another one if and only if I can get it for a great price. // 7

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