Price paid: £ 209
Purchased from: Merchant City Guitars
Sound — 9
Definately a guitar that is made for Hard Rock/Metal which is great for what I play, but when you get to know it better you find that it plays blues great as well as softer rock. You can get a lot of different sounds. I play it through a Vox AD30VT amp. You can get any rock/metal tone you want really; great crunch, very good sustain thanks to the mahogany body and while the pickups are Standard INF they give good harmonics and a warm Slash kinda tone when on the neck pickup, sounds great on lower tunings too. It also has a very good clean sound (especially 1 click away from the neck pickup) I mainly use clean tone for Metallica clean tones like Nothing Else Matters, Master of Puppets etc. No unwanted noise really, quite a bright sound coming through the Vox and it suits my Crybaby Wah perfectly, you can really get some screaming tones from this.
Overall Impression — 9
As I said above I play mainly metal, rock and some blues. I would have no hesitation in saying that this guitar suits all of them excellent, espacially metal though; great lead tones especially with a bit of reverb on, and a very metal crunch the lower tuning you get the better! I've been playing abour five years but only really got into it two years ago when I bought this which is my second guitar. If it were stolen I would definately buy this again as the other Ibanez tremelo models in the sort of price range are horrible at staying in tune. Although If I had the money I'd love a Schecter C1-FR. There's nothing I hate about this guitar really, I don't notice the lack of whammy bar, great tone and it is very light which is a bonus. For the money you really can't go wrong.
Reliability & Durability — 10
This will definately survive live playing, I've dropped it multiple times, most recently when my strap came off and It crashed onto its front, very scared at that point but no damage at all! Very relieved. The hardware is built to last, the knobs stay on well, and the tuners especially are very strong and reliable, staying in tune very well. The strap buttons are extremely strong though I'd always get strap locks. Definately a dependable guitar, I would gig with it without a backup. The finish lasts ages, now I've been playing it a couple of years now there are a couple of tiny paint wears around the pickup selector.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
It was set up perfectly, action just right, bridge set in great, great strings although I still don't know what they were! They were 10-46 though, so awesome for any alternate tunings. The pickups were fine, although after a couple of days I raised them slightly. The first thing I checked when I got it out the box was the fret wire which was all filed and finished to a great standard. The gun metal chrome hardware looked awesome, but after a while this oxidizes, especially the pickup guards and parts of the bridge, I used some chrome polish on this when it got stupidly bad and it polished up very well although I lost the darkness of the chrome, but I'd rather that than the oxidization! Also the jack works its way loose so always have a spanner in your case! Apart from that everything was just right.
Features — 8
Made in Indonesia, must've been a few years ago now. Main Features: - 24 Jumbo frets - INF3 and INF4 humbuckers - Mahogany body - Three-piece maple neck - Fixed bridge - 5-way pickup selector - Gun metal chrome Volume and tone knobs It has a really cool weathered black finish where the grain of the wood shows which makes it a good looking guitar. Mine came on its own; no case, amp, cable.