Price paid: $ 400
Purchased from: Sam Ash Music
Sound — 8
The sound on this guitar is excellent. You can go from a very crunchy sound using the Bridge pickup with the tone all the way up, to a very bassy, sludgy sound with the neck pickup and the tone all the way down. However, on the higher notes/frets, the sustain isn't as good as on the lower frets. This could be my playing, however, I'm really not sure. Also, as I've pointed out before, when I use the tremolo, the strings I'm not playing on start to fade in. Again, this could be my playing. But other wise, this guitar easily handles the metal that I play, and the clean sounds are great as well. I play Johnny Cash, too, and I can play his songs excellently on this Ibanez. I play it through a Vox VT15 amp, which is great. I guess it's possible that that is how I'm getting the undesired sounds, but I doubt it. This amp is great. The only pedal I have is a Vox channel switching pedal for the amp, and it works fine as well.
Overall Impression — 10
This guitar would seriously work with any genre, specifically (for me) metal. I've been playing for about a year and a half, but since I got this Ibanez, my skills have grown a lot. I have greatly advanced on my soloing skills specifically, for the flat fretboard really makes shredding and soloing an easy task. And it's without question better than my Fender Squire Bullet. I wish it had strap locks, because on the first day I had it, the strap fell off, and the guitar hit the floor and the tremolo arm bent, and had to be hammered back into place. If this guitar was lost or stollen, I would definately get it again, on account of I've yet to find a guitar that I like more than this one. I've tried many other brands, and only Schecter comes close, but it's still nothing compared to Ibanez. I've even tried the more expensive Ibanez's, like the RG920QM or the Mick Thomsen signature MTM1, and I still like my RG350MYE more. What I love most is the maple neck/fretboard. It is very flat and comfortable to shred on. Also, the fact that it's maple helps, because I think most guitars would look better with maple necks/fretboards. When I first played this guitar at Sam Ash, the guy who was helping me out left to go help another customer after he handed me the guitar. I wanted to try it ou just for fun (because of the color. When he came back, I told him this guitar was the best one I'd ever played. This guitar is perfect in every way, minus the few tremolo problems which I believe can be fixed. I honestly would not settle for any other guitar on this planet. This guitar is still the most fantastic thing I've ever played.
Reliability & Durability — 10
This Ibanez could most certainly withstand a live show. I think the hardware will last for a long time. I've had it for about 5 months now (I got it at Christmas), and the hardware has made it this long, and I don't expect it to go out on me any time soon. Some people might want to replace the factory pickups, but I don't mind, I think they're just fine.
Action, Fit & Finish — 10
When I brought my guitar in for a restring about a week after I got it, the guy at Sam Ash said it was set up horribly. When I got it back, the pickups were lower (height-wise), the trem was farther back, and it sounded a lot better. I guess they did a half-as- job of setting it up in the factory, so I'm glad I got it set up properly so soon. However, everything else was fine. So, if you know how to set up a trem guitar or have a warranty to get free set ups from wherever you bought it, it would definately be worth taking a look at. But now that it is set up, the action is great.
Features — 9
This Indonesian Ibanez has a bright yellow super-strat shaped body. It also has a black pickguard, and the pickups, knobs, bridge, locking nut, truss-rod cover, and tuning hardware is all black as well. The Bridge is an Edge III bridge, one of Ibanez's many versions of a Floyd Rose. I have a problem with it, but I'm not sure if it's how they made the guitar or if I just played on it too much. Basically, I will pull the trem all the way up and let go, and play the low E string, and it will sound one way, but then, if I push the trem all the way down and let go, the same string will sound lower, about half of a half step lower. Also, and this could be my fault, but when I use the tremolo, the sound fades out quickly and the other strings that I'm not playing on will make noise after a while. Otherwise, the trem system is great, the locking nut is so good, I haven't had to tune it for about two weeks now. The guitar has 1 volume control, 1 tone control, and a five way pickup selector, all of which are fantastic. I play heavy metal, thrash metal, some hard rock, and the Standard Ibanez pickups (Infinity 4 in the bridge, Infinity Single 3 in the middle, and Infinity 3 in the neck, H-S-H configuration) work great for it, even though I plan to replace them someday. I mostly use the Bridge pickup, but I do use all of them at some point. The maple neck is very fast and flat; it is very easy to get around, and it is no problem reaching any of the 24 frets. The guitar came with yellow DR coated strings, which work great, and the color definately makes the guitar look even cooler. However, I would like to point out that the yellow strings weren't put on at the factory, the guy at Sam Ash put them on to se what they'd look like. In other words, don't expect this guitar to come with yellow strings.