Price paid: $ 400
Purchased from: Pinkston and Sons' music (local)
Sound — 9
Unplugged- The sound is bright and full unplugged, and rather loud for an agb, iv used it several times with an Acoustic guitarist and a huge djembe (hand drum) and two vocalists, and could still be heard to a reasonable degree. The tone is well rounded and you could play just about any type of music except metal obviously. Amplified- The tone control is very versatile and feedback isnt too bad so long as you don't stand right in front of your amp or put on too much gain. If you feel the need to distort it, you may be surprised by the quality of the tone. Its got a fair amount of punch and lots of grit. Unfortunatley when you plug her in there is an undesirable amount of click and clack. But its an agb, what do you expect? I use this bass for many different types of music from ragae to blues to Phish and Dave Matthews and it works great.
Overall Impression — 10
I play a lot of blues, folk, jazz, Indie and Phish type stuff with this bass. Iv been playing for almost two years very dedicatedly. I have an Ibanez SR705, S101 Precision fake, and a viola style kingston. I absolutely love this bass. I compared it to other Ibanez basses, a Alvarez, Ovation, and some other lesser brands, and there was no other bass that impressed me as much as this one. If it were stolen, I would seek much justice, if it were lost I would do my best to track it down. But I would definitely replace it if it came down to it. I just wish there was a plays for my thumb to besides the E string. But thats nothing a little glue cant fix.
Reliability & Durability — 10
I haven't had it very long, but I have played two outdoor, unplugged shows with it without a back up. The strings seam pretty durable like I wont need to replace them very often and even in the humidity of playing in summer by a lake in Mississippi, it stayed in tune well and I was playing hard. I also played a three hour off and on set with it and didn't have to tune at all between songs. The finish on the back has held up well, no scrathes even after tons of stand up playing. The headstocks finish has dented and chipped a bit after a few bonks, but nothing terrible. The top has help up very well, iv accidentally hit it on things and there are few marks. But I feel that if you played rigorously with a pick it would scratch pretty bad.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
When I bought it, it was completely set up. I'm not sure if thats due to Ibanez or the shop. But it played like a dream from day one. Iv played a lot of basses, Acoustic and electric, and this is by far the most comfortable agb iv ever played, and its more comfortable than a lot of electrics. It is a little stiff, but again, its an agb. The neck has a wonderful C shape and the finish on the back of the neck is fairly smoothe. The very highest frets are kinda hard to reach because the neck gets a little thick and the cut out doesn't completely expose the high frets, but not a lot of people use the high frets on Acoustic basses. As for the finish, its fantastic. The web sites pics don't do justice to just how beautiful the violin sunburst is. Every time I see someone else hold her im proud.
Features — 10
Its a four-stringed bass with 22 frets set into a Rosewood fingerboard on a mahogany neck. The sides and back are also mahogany with a Spruce top and the saddle is made of rosewood. Its equipped with a Fishman Sonicore Pickup and banez AEQ-SST Shape Shifter Preamp with Onboard Tuner. It has a 1/4" and an XLR output, so you can use a usual instrument cable to your amp or di, or run straight into the PA system, which is extremely convenient for playing small gigs. It also has a phase button on the eq which allows you to use both outputs simultaniously and blend them nicely. It comes with Ibanez's coated bronze phosphor strings.