Price paid: $ 200
Features: Made in Japan May 1986 According to serial# 22 medium frets. Rosewood fret board, thin maple neck with mahogany inlay. Best info I have is a 12" fretboard radius, but I haven't been able to verify that for certain Solid double cutaway basswood strat style body with smooth rounded edges. Original color is supposed to be pale blue, but it has aged to a two-tone sea foam green, with matching head stock. Original Edge vibrato :) Passive SSH pickups S7 neck & middle true duo humbucker bridge with push only coil tap on tone knob. 5-way blade selector. Ibanez brand sealed tuners. Bought with original hard shell case, though not in pristine condition. // 9
Sound: My style is whatever I feel like trying to play, whatever I'm in the mood for, but this guitar is made for rock. Period. I'm running thru either a Raven RG200 2x12, with a DigiTech GNX3 MEB or a Line 6 Flextone II. I haven't experienced any noise whatsoever with any PUP selection, & no noise when changing PUPs. For 30 year old PUPs they sing quite well, far better than the INFs in in my 350DX. The mids seem to growl which I love, & it begs to be cranked up even more, but I haven't been able to crank it past 3 for fear of hearing loss to pets, and cracked windows. // 9
Action, Fit & Finish: The person I bought it from does his own work on his guitars, like I do & he knew what he was doing. Action so low a 1.0 pick doesn't have much clearance, and no fret buzz. Pickup adjustment? Please that's a matter of personal taste. When I wear out this set of strings I am going to shim the locking nut a tiny bit, and adjust the truss rod. Frets are in great shape, surely they've been replaced at some point in the last 30 years! Saddles on the vibrato have a little corrosion, which I would expect, but he put new lock blocks in. Arm has new bushings plus an extra set. Finish has a couple of small chips, but it has obviously been played & not sitting in a closet. If I'd have got this new, I would rate it 10. // 10
Reliability & Durability: This beauty will withstand live playing, standing on your head playing, whatever. Strap buttons solid, all hardware seems great. It IS an Edge after all. The finish is 30 years old & solid just faded nicely. Shall we call it patina? Wanna do your Angus Young impersonation go for it. I don't abuse guitars, so I can't tell you if it would survive bashing it against your half-stack or not. I know this much, if I can plug a guitar straight into my amp, crank till the windows rattle, & I still don't need a noise suppressor, it's ready for gigging. IMO ALL players should have a back-up, but I doubt this would need one. // 9
Overall Impression: Like previously stated I'll give almost any style a go. Whether I can play it well or not, that's for some critic or hater somewhere else to decide. I've been playing steady now for a couple years, practice almost daily. Only had a couple private audiences, they said they liked what they heard, but maybe they were just being kind! I knew what I was getting before I bought it, a 30 year Japan made original RG. What I didn't expect was it to be ready to go as soon as I took it out of the case! This beauty is so original, it still has the RG440 decal on the headstock! I love the aging this guitar has. The body looks almost pearlescent! The fretboard is super dark from years of finger oils.
The only things I don't like about it's too damn gorgeous. Makes me want to sit & stare sat it! But it plays so damn well I succumb to temptation. Also the coil tap is push only, so you have to remember what you had it in last if you want to switch back & forth. How could I possibly replace it! If somebody stole it I'd track them down & shove one of my other guitars I'm that fond of up his arse. I have the following other equipment I regularly use. RG350DX, RG270DX totally modded with OFR & new electronics, RG321, Agile AL2000, Raven RG200, Line 6 Flextone II with floorboard, DigiTech GNX3, Morley ABC switch. I gave everything a 9 except for fit & finish because that's about the only thing that can be rated objectively. It's a Jap Ibby from the golden age! Hello! Also I would love to have included a pic, but I can't seem to figure out how. I'll gladly edit & put one up if I figure out how. // 9