RGR320EX review by Ibanez

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  • Sound: 6
  • Overall Impression: 7
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 8
  • Features: 7
  • Reviewer's score: 7.2 Good
  • Users' score: 9 (102 votes)
Ibanez: RGR320EX

Price paid: $ 450

Purchased from: Private Seller

Sound — 6
I play progressive metal and this guitar hasn't let me down yet. I would say it isn't perfectly suited, but it has no problem coping with this genre. It is pretty good for shredding though. I use it through my practice set-up which is into a Zoom G2 effects pedal then straight into the input of a Crate GT212 transistor amp. Using the pedal, I have gotten the sound down to an inch of what my perfect tone would sound like. I get glassy cleans like I would on a valve amp and rich, full-bodied distortions that function equally well for both rhythm and lead parts. The pickups are alright, but not what you would call great. I would change the configuration to a Pearly Gates in the neck and an Invader in the bridge position, but that may just be enough incentive to move on to a higher quality guitar altogether.

Overall Impression — 7
I play progressive metal which is a bit more graceful than generic heavy metal or the like and this guitar is a good match, if not great. I've been playing for the better part of 6 years and I own a Crate GT212 and Zoom G2 and soon to be Ibanez RGA7. If this guitar was stolen I would be very unhappy and I would try to procure another like it, if that was out of the question, I would look at Jackson Dinkies or I would stretch my budget for a Ernie Ball Music Man Silhouette. What I love about it is how comfortable it is to play. The molded neck joint fits my palm perfectly when playing on frets 21-24. I also love the tuning stability. There isn't much to hate about this guitar, except the pickups (if you're so inclined) but I make it work for me. My favorite feature is the fast Wizard II neck. I only compared it to a friend's Ibanez SA120FM and this guitar shone through in all areas. I only wish it had a kill Switch and coil tap and perhaps one of those nice Gibraltar bridges instead of the Edge III trem.

Reliability & Durability — 8
I have played this guitar live and it survived unscathed. The hardware is extremely solid and after a year, the tone and volume pots still feel like they did when they were new. The strap buttons were very solid, but as a precaution I changed them to Hennesey strap locks (which I do NOT recommend). I have since changed these to Schallers which work like nobody's business. I can definitely depend on this guitar to be with me every step of the way. I have not broken a string on it since I got it (haven't broken a string for 4 years come to think of it). The finish seems very sturdy and it only becomes shiny in the places where my arm and little finger rests.

Action, Fit & Finish — 8
When I received the guitar, I had to get used to setting up the Floating trem first (wasn't that hard). After a few dive-bombs and motorcycle sounds, I decided to lock down the trem because I don't like the instability. The feel of the guitar is great. It felt really solid and the neck was a breeze to play on. The pickup height was great. The only flaw, in that sense, that I saw with this guitar was that the very last fret was a bit high so I filed it down. After that the feel improved a bit more.

Features — 7
Mine was made in 2006 in Indonesia. The neck is the 24 fret, 25.5" scale Wizard II with Rosewood fretboard. The body finish is what Ibanez calls "Road Rage Black" which is basically matte black paint with a pseudo-tarmac finish. The body is made from Basswood and the neck is 3 piece maple. Body style is that of a super-strat. It comes with the Ibanez Edge III bridge, of which I myself am not too fond. My blades have dulled slightly which results in tuning not staying the way it should. I have blocked my trem with 3 wooden blocks in the back. I love the tuning stability the locking nut and bridge gives me, and coupled with the fine tuners, it really hits it well. It has passive "Design by EMG" H1 pickups in bridge and neck positions. It has a 3 way Switch and a tone and volume pot. It has the normal Ibanez tuners which are non locking. I got this guitar with 2 extra springs and a hard case. That's about it.

5 comments sorted by best / new / date

    b-rentt! wrote: i wana do alot of drop tuned stuff but do alot of divebombs whammy etc. is this a good guitar for that, i mean, with the whole floyd rose thing going on?, i mean, i know its a b i t ch to tune it and re-string it but once i get used it yea but, would you reccomend this guitar over just a standard bridged guitar for my purposes?
    Actually the reputation of FR bridges being difficult is much exaggerated. They're no harder to setup or restring than any classic strat tremolo. All you have to do is learn a couple of simple tricks. http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/sho... hp?t=614226 The big thing is once you have it setup for a certain tuning and string gauge leave it the hell alone. I'll give you one of the tricks always use the same gauge and brand of stings. I know that sounds silly but it really does matter on a floating trem.
    I'm really happy owner this guitar Ibanez RGR 320 EX Roadrage Black. I bought this model in 06.09.2007r and for all time works perfect. I never have any problems with this guitar. In my opinion and many guys (guitarists), who were able to test my guitar says this same. It's really good guitar, not cheap but worth its price. Regards
    I have had this guitar for 4 years. Since the 2007 models were released (Red Artic Frost) and have played it almost exclusively since then. I am using the stock pick ups. I found they sound beautiful and have had other people tell me the same (though what they say is taken with a grain of salt). The Edge 3 works fine if you set it up properly (which is not as difficult as it is made out to be. It is just fear inducing.) I have played this thing on stage, at home, at the studio, at practice. It has held up this long (without a dent or scratch). I also take very good care of my guitars. So if your looking for a guitar that isn't JUST for metal because I can get a very versatile sound out of it. (If you try you will find you can) give this one a shot, test it play it. You will find it can surprise you.
    I love this guitar... the only thing I'm not really happy with are the designed by EMG pickups so I'm upgrading this axe with a dimarzio liquifire / crunch lab pickup set. Hope it works like I'm thinking.
    I got this guitar and had to switch out the pickups straight away as I thought they were really muddy and couldn't stand them. With a Seymour Duncan Invader in the bridge this guitar sounds sick, plenty of sustain and metal crunch.