JEM7V Steve Vai Signature review by Ibanez

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 9
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.6 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.9 (360 votes)
Ibanez: JEM7V Steve Vai Signature

Price paid: $ 3800

Purchased from: Billy hyde

Sound — 10
Well, The JEM77V has a unique voice that is clear, powerful but with its own tone so it may not suit popular rock genres. Because Steve Vai's music style is very different, when you play ths guitar: you'll have the feel of Vai sound there with you. Strange, I use a Marshall Valve/electronic, but because I only just got it, I've only had time to play with distortion, and the sound was very powerful and strangely alive, but I haven't tried clean yet so I don't know, a bit scared, never heard it before.

Overall Impression — 9
I play a lot of hard-rock, old skool metal, instrumental/arena rock. And I would honestly say, I would "not" use this guitar for any other songs, other than Steve Vai songs. Harsh, that's why I keep the amazing Stratocaster for everything else. Truth is, pressure's on when people see you playing the JEM77V, you'll have to play good or you won't get any respect.

Reliability & Durability — 10
As ive said you'll have to get used to playing this strange guitar, coz, trust me, if you buy this guitar you would simply listen to its great sound and stare at it! The fist time i felt this about a guitar was when i first layed eyes on a 12-string, we didnt care what we were playing,just as long as we could hear the sound. This guitar is not meant for home-use only though, it was made for live gigs and presentations. Dont worry if you do buy it, it'll last.

Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The JEM77V, to me, it's a artisan instrument. I prefer a smaller and lighter guitar with great fun action, but the JEM77V is for serious music. That's why this guitar will be very fun after you get used to it, it'll take time with a guitar like this. If the JEM77V has flaws, I don't know about them and I'm pretty sure will never. It's one of the most beautiful guitars out there, the wood its made of doesn't matter if you ask me, it relies mostly on electronics.

Features — 10
This beauty has a 3pc JEM neck, has 24 W/6103 frets and has custom Steve Vai inlays. Its Alder body (this guitar relies more on electronics though) has a Edge-Pro bridge and has DiMarzio Evolution pickups: (H) on the neck and bridge and a single coil on the middle. The JEM77V's shape is similar to the Strat but Steve Vai has personalised it with a cut-through handle and sharpend edges.

17 comments sorted by best / new / date

    The monkey grip may be useless to you. But it's there because he uses the monkey grip and he designed the guitar. During shows he'll often use the monkey grip to throw it around his body or just swing it around in the air. And as far as not holding that expensive of a guitar with it. He's loaded so he doesn't care. I think it look's neat and has lot's of uses for it.
    ahhh. i have this guitar and its all down to opinion in the end but i think the handle is imense. i use it all the time. and when i play other ibanez guitars it doesnt feel right without the monkey grip. and some people said "who in their right mind would use a grip on a guitar this expensive" well for one its simple to get it out the case now. coz the case with it is so well fitted its hard to get it out. thats where the handle comes in. and whilst picking it up. you have more control with a balanced handle in it. so yeah. i love my monkey grip. i love my guitar. i love ibanez
    DavyH wrote: whiplash_90 : i saw a triple neck JEM. woot yeah thats a one of a kind, living in steves house.. if only i had a crowbar and knew where he lived.. lol You'd need a removal truck to move it though....
    hah that made me crease, this guitar is lush but i wouldnt be able to decide this or a VG strat?
    Nothing to add to the reviews. I went in my local music shop on Friday to buy a stand, test drove a Jem 7V and walked out with it. It's: 1 - Drop dead gorgeous; 2 - The most playable guitar I've ever touched; 3 - a lot lighter than my Les Paul; Obviously a very different guitar from the LP and doesn't do what the LP will, but for an almost perfect superstrat you'll have to go a long way to find better. Only dislike? Top hat knobs. I hate them. The tripleneck is one of Steve Vai's. 12 string, 6 string, 6 string fretless. Catch it played on the G3 Denver disc.
    my mate at school has this guitar. I dont like him this kinda makes me not like the guitar but still, just look at it. it's pretty it's gorgeous. it's fantismal
    Believe me, this guitar is worth all that cash. I personally don't have all that cash and will have to work for months to get enough, but I played one at the store for a while and MY GOD!!! I Would pay AUS-$4200 for one [If I had].
    this guitar is sooo nice. the monkey grip is useless if you always carry it around in a case. the whammy bar is a great feature you can literally suspend the guitar in the air by it and not even break a string!
    i actually have this guitar. and id like to say it was love at first sight, or more like a deep "like". my electric celibrity gs ovation, i believe, is better. but its still a great guitar.
    bigal_85 wrote: This or a fender standard strat? grr difficult choices
    I can't believe there's any doubt in your mind whether to choose the JEM over the fender. the JEM is soo awesome. The fender is good but boring