Purchased from: Musician's Friend
Sound — 8
The pickups included with the guitar (Ibanez AH1 in the neck, AH2 in the bridge), are versatile for any genre you might play. Personally, I'm not much of a metal person, but I'm addicted to playing lead and rhythm riffs with volume on 10 and distortion on maximum. That being said, heavy palm-muted power chords will sometimes come across sounding iffy on a small amp such as my Vox 30-watt, but come out much more clearly with a heavier setup. Still, the sound is perfect on both clean and Drive, blues to metal, folk to emo. The string gauges run from 10 to 46, which means they're happy to give you a fat, punchy aural scream. The mahogany body makes for warm sounds and the sustain is very good. Pinch harmonics scream. Once your strings begin to age, the sound somewhat changes, at least for me; it takes on a bit more muddiness. Don't let that turn you off, though, since most guitars tend to do that.
Overall Impression — 9
I really have no particular playing style. That being said, I needed a guitar that can handle anything I throw down onto it's fretboard and strings; this guitar delivers. In fact I feel a much bigger urge to play more, settle down, and really study the principle guitar now that I have an Iceman; it truely rings as a professional piece and should be treated as such. I'd replace it in a minute. It's comfortable, beautiful to behold, a joy to play, and most of all, it's a pleasure to hear.
Reliability & Durability — 10
A black guitar with a glossy finish will always be prone to fingerprints and smudges, therefore that's out of my consideration for this area. The guitar is very solid, built to last, and has yet to let me down. Of course I've only had it for about two weeks, but nonetheless, it plays, feels, and looks spectacular and has proven to be very reliable. My two previous guitars (Squier Strat, Epiphone SG) aquired a few noisy pickup selectors and loose input jacks after a few weeks. This guitar still holds up like the first day out of the box.
Action, Fit & Finish — 10
This guitar came perfectly set up out of the box. Action was fine, neck is extremely fast, the whole guitar is clean and, much to my delight, it came strung with D'Addario strings. Everything on the guitar is solid and build with the utmost care.
Features — 9
This guitar came packed with everything you could possibly need, except for a case or bag, which would have been extremely helpful due to the radical shape. Tuners are fine, they can hold a tuning as low as drop C very efficiently. Controls are very cool-looking as is the rest of this guitar. Fingerprints will often be a problem, so make sure you get ahold of a decent cleaning wipe or cloth.