RG421 review by Ibanez

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  • Sound: 8
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 9
  • Features: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 8.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 6 (22 votes)
Ibanez: RG421

Price paid: C$ 300

Sound — 8
I was quite impressed with the quality of the V7/V8 pickups in this badboy. Before I even bought the guitar I was planning on swapping in some DiMarzio's, however, I know now that I can wait a few months before I get bored with the stock pickups. I play everything from Metal, to Progressive (Dream Theater), hard rock, modern rock, and metalcore (Killswitch Engage), also neoclassical Jason Becker/Yngwie Malmsteen type stuff, and it does all of these styles well. I do lean more towards heavy music, and its perfect for that. Also the cleans can be really nice from the middle position of this guitar. I run the guitar through a Marshall Valvestate VS100 and a Boss GT-8 processor, and it sounds great. Also, sounds fantastic straight from headphones plugged into the GT-8. I've also tryed it straight though the Marshall amp and with stompboxes such as the DS-1 without disappointment, this guitar seems to deliver good tones, and you get a nice diversity of sounds between the 5-way pickup selector. However, it is more geared towards heavy and modern rock sounds I believe, which is perfect for me, but maybe not for everyone. I rate the sound an 8/10.

Overall Impression — 9
What a buy! I paid $300CDN for a rare Japan Made Ibanez RG421 with a nice hardshell case and it is literally brand new! I'm not saying this is the last guitar I'm ever going to own in my life, but I am never going to sell it. I've been playing for over 10 years and I can't wait to bring this sexy guitar on stage and melt some panties. If this guitar was lost of stolen, I would never be able to find a made in japan model in perfect condition at that price ever again. I got VERY lucky, however I would certainly look to replace it. I love the look and playability of this guitar the most. What I didn't like at first is the volume knob actually gets in my way a bit when I'm playing the high strings, so I had to adjust my playing style a bit. The V7/V8 pickups surpassed my expectations for stock pickups, however I do plan on upgrading them in the future. The only thing I wish it had would be a trem arm but this guitar doesn't support them. Overall I give this product a well deserved 9/10. Thanks for checking out my review!

Reliability & Durability — 9
I trust this guitar for live playing. I would bring a backup of course, just in case. The hardware seems solid, the Gotoh tuners keep the guitar in good tune even after live playing abuse. It has huge strap buttons, so I don't even need my strap locks with this baby, so thats a huge bonus. I think the finish is beautiful and tough at the same time, I can't imagine it wearing on me anytime in the near future. I take very good care of my guitars so I haven't chipped the finish yet and I would probably cry if I ever damaged this beauty.

Action, Fit & Finish — 9
When I bought this guitar it was set up quite well. Nice low action, and quite possibly the fastest neck I've ever played, and I've owned many guitars over the years. My only complaint, is the high frets were going dead during bends and vibratos, and I was getting some noise from other strings during the bends. This is totally unacceptable for me, so I had to raise the action a tad, and the problem was solved. Let me say one thing about the finish, this is one SEXY guitar. Mine is in deep blue, not a scratch of flaw on it, and it is absolutely gorgeous. I have always loved the curves and shape of Ibanez guitars, and this one does not disappoint in the looks department. In terms of action, fit & Finish I will give this category a hard 9 since my problem was an easy fix.

Features — 9
2002 Ibanez RG421. Rare Made in Japan model. 24 Frets Fixed Bridge H-H Setup with 5-way switch Scale: 25.5 in. Wizard neck Basswood body Jumbo frets Gotoh Tuners V7 neck pickup V8 bridge pickup I bought it used with a "Carvin" brand hardshell case. I rate the features at 9/10 because despite some great features, this guitar unfortunately does not support a tremolo arm.

12 comments sorted by best / new / date

    just got a RG421-MOL in today. dated made 12-11-13. very light (10 lbs) and the neck is very thin. it did help my speed a wee bit instantly. downside; bit low action on the E string that I needed to rise. and the images aren't quite spot on. usually they show a smooth front single piece and matching body back, but mine seems to have had a mahogany quilt on front and 3 piece or so back. it was like a mcdonalds cheeseburger pic. what you see isn't whatcha get.also, I read that the volume knob gets in the way. sure enough. but whatever; just saying. and craftsmanship ? made fine I suppose, but again; the thing isn't the quality that images would suggest in fit or finish.great beginner guitar though. (won't be buying another color because I like this one so much though...
    from the moment I read the brief description, I knew this review would suck...
    Yeah I definitely overrated this guitar, Ive had so many better ones since, but I have no way to delete or edit it. Honestly this guitar is about a 6.8/10 overall, it was decent bang for the buck for me as I bought it for $200 in brand new condition with a case, but Ive sold it since and would probably never buy one again. Decent entry level guitar for the newer player if you can get one at the price I did though. Sorry for the shit n00b review. XD
    @neoclassical85 you don't need to apologize for anything. I own this guitar and it plays like butter, with a proper setup this guitar will perform a hell of a lot better than the $200 you spent. I have owned about 10 different Ibanez guitars from the lowly RG120 to my main lady now which is a 1992 RG550DX in Purple Neon and this guitar can hold its own. It is my go to axe when I want to play alternate tunings and I don't want to F around setting up a Floyd for an hour. To be fair I did replace the pups with some active EMG's but the neck on this baby is fast and the action is very low. For $200 you can not find a better playing guitar...I rate mine at least 9/10 with the EMG's it screams!
    I own one apparently and it's worth the $100 I paid for it. It's a foolproof beginner-novice guitar but I would buy a new, better one as soon as possible.
    bustapr wrote: from the moment I read the brief description, I knew this review would suck...
    Im sorry this reivew didn't "do it" for you. Whats wrong with it?