Price paid: £ 324
Purchased from: HW Music Bolton
Sound — 8
The guitar is designed for metal, and it shows, although it's excellent for pretty much any style of playing. I've played this through a Roland Cube 60 and a Line 6 Spider III 15, and it sounds excellent through them all. I use a sort-of custom gauge set - hybrid 9s with a 60 for the low B (stock was 10-52, I believe). The low B sounds rather muddy, although I plan to swap out the stock pickups for Seymour Duncan Blackout Phase I's, which should clear the problem. The guitar sounds very full, which is imperative when chugging out low rhythms, yet is perfect for playing high lead work as well. It also handles clean playing well, and would probably make a very good guitar for a jazz guitarist. Overall, superb guitar, but could do with an option for better pickups.
Overall Impression — 9
I've been playing guitar for about 4 years, and I play mostly prog metal, which this thing is perfect for. I own an Ibanez RG31MH, and have owned a generic brand start (cost about 50 on eBay). If it was stolen, I would probably put the money into an Ibanez S7420 (Mahogany body, ZP tremolo) although if this didn't exist I would definitely buy another one. The best thing about this guitar is its rugged simplicity - very little setup time needed for hours upon hours of rock-solid playing. I think it could've done with a larger scale length, and possibly a different finish (white/red). Other than that, a beautiful guita. If you're looking for a cheap, but effective and feature-rich 7 string, you can do a lot worse than the RG7321.
Reliability & Durability — 8
This guitar's built like a panzer. The hardware's solid as a rock, as are the strap buttons. It's extremely dependable, and I wouldn't even dream of a backup in a gig. The finish has slightly more give in it - a few chips and scratches, although these are mostly my fault (I should invest in a guitar stand)! I've considered respraying this guitar, although I'm a little apprehensive as the finish looks dandy as it is and I don't want to risk buggering it up. Overall, a very solid guitar.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The guitar was beautifully set up. Action was fine, pickups were fine, plugged it in and started playing straight away, no setup needed. The only gripe I have with this guitar's setup is that the tuning peg on the G string was (and still is) rather slack. Other than this though a flawless guitar, and from Ibanez I would expect nothing less.
Features — 10
Indonesian-made, 2009. 24 frets, 25.5" scale length. Basswood body, Maple/Walnut neck. Bound rosewood fingerboard with pearl Dot inlay & jumbo frets. Black gloss finish, superstrat body shape. Fixed bridge, passive pickups (HH), 1 volume, 1 control, 5-way pickup selector (bridge, bridge in parallel, both, single bridge & single neck coil, neck). Axis II 7 in Bridge, Axis I 7 in neck. Ibanez stock tuners, no accessories included. First gripe is that it would be better in maybe a 26.625" scale length - the B gets too floppy when down-tuned, and higher guages (I use a 60 currently) could possibly eat through the frets. Very well featured guitar, could possibly do with a larger scale length, e.g. 26.625". Owned an Ibanez RG321MH previously, and it wouldn't fit into a guitar gig bag so I had to pick up a bass one - possibly due to the headstock? Beautiful guitar, no real gripes.