Sound — 8
The bass is quite versatile, I play rock, punk, funk slap bass, metal, bassically just about anything but jazz and pop, and it suits my styles fine when combined with my Laney HMX30B. I beleive that the bass could also handle the other genres, tho these are certainly not the target of this bass. The SRX300 has a very high output, and my amp is resigned to remaining at 1 on the volume setting, above which it can quite easily drown out my guitar amp at 5 volume. However, when not in use I have found it to be noiseless on all settings, as soon as I stop playing and mute the strings I can let go, leave it on full volume and get nothing, even close to the amp. I do however get some noise when close to a PC for recording, but this is still only in small quantities. The SRX300 will suite metalheads in particular due to the high output and ground shaking ability, but it is a versitile instrument and can perform many different tasks, slap bass is a joy to play on this bass, and it can do funk very well, imitating the sounds of even Flea's early almost synthed sounds without pedals.
Overall Impression — 10
For metal, punk, rock, or pretty much anything other than pop and jazz this bass performs beyond its price tag. I've been playing guitar for 5 years, bass for 4 and also own a Peavey bass, Yamaha guitar, Marshall amp, and Laney bass amp, due to my experiences with the SRX300 I am now planning to expand my collection further with another Ibanez, this time a guitar, an NDM1. This Bass is currently the best instrument I own, tho not the most expensive. Before buying this bass I also looked at a Peavey Grind, Yamaha RBX374, Cort Action, Cort GB and an ESP LTD Viper. The Ibanez won on value for money and also it had that X-factor you look for in a guitar you really want to play for years to come. I think the best thing about this bass is the sounds you can get out of it, and it is a joy to slap, while also looking great. 3 band EQ and a gig bag would be nice, but at this price it's already packed with features so thats no complaint. If stolen or lost, I would get another, or save and buy a more high end Ibanez bass, as this is a great instrument, and it gets better as the line goes up. If you have 200-300 to spend, I'd advise you get this bass, it's just about one of the best out there for the price in my opinion.
Reliability & Durability — 9
The guitar has a very solid feel to it, and the finish seems indestructable so far, and strap buttons are solid, tho I always use strap-locks as an insurance. I would gig this instrument, and while I probably wouldn't have a backup as such, my local gigs are very friendly and instruments are often loaned when one breaks down, usually because the backup is still in the van! I don't think I'd need to borrow another bass tho, unless the battery decided to die at exactly the wrong moment.
Action, Fit & Finish — 10
Because of the set-up and service my guitar recieved from theplanetofsound, it played perfectly out of the box, fully intonated, perfect action, truss rod adjusted, frets dressed, pickups perfect, lemon oil applied to the rosewood fretboard, even arrived in tune! there were no materials faults with the guitar either, though in the policy theplanetofsound say they will noy send a customer the guitar if it has any such faults, but will replace it with flawless version. This will not be a true reflection of basses bought elsewhere tho, where the guitar will not recieve such attention between factory and customer, but mine was perfect.
Features — 9
I've had the bass for just over a month now, it was made in 2005 in Indonesia, has a full 2 octaves of medium frets on a 34" scale rosewood fretboard with a fairly thin and very playable SRX4 maple 1-peace neck. The body is of solid agathis my version finished in moonshadow (a nice metallic silver that seems to glitter up close). The bass has a simple double cut-away design, and aggressive fairly square edges. It has Ibanez's B100 bridge fitted, which, while siple and very simple to re-string, looks fantastic in comparison to the other generic bridges at this price point. The Bass has two passive Ibanez humbuckers with exposed pole-peices (PFR-N4 neck and PFR-B4 bridge), combined with the active two way equilization, EQB-II DX (bass boost/cut and treble boost/cut). The in-line controls also feature volume and rotary pickup balance. Tuners are non-locking variations, but have a solid feel to them, and dont go out of tune too easily when knocked. Included in my purchase of the guitar was a full set-up and service, which normally costs aroud 50-60, some allen keys that fit various components on the bass, and a very thin and feeble-looking cable. A gig bag would be nice, but is not included, and the service was included by the shop I bought the guitar from, it is not a standard feature of purchasing this guitar. Overall though, the featurse and specs for the rrp of 250 are very good, for the 210 I paid they are brilliant.