Price paid: $ 220
Purchased from: craigslist
Sound — 6
As stated in my other reviews, I play a very metal style, and this guitar (with upgrades) is a great shredding beast. Through an old school Line 6 AX2, the guitar screams. Leads are bright and brilliant, and rhythms are chunky and powerful. Cleans even come though quite nicely with the EMG pickup. This guitar can be used for really any kind of style however, depending on the amplifiers being used.
Overall Impression — 7
I bought this guitar as my introduction the Ibanez line, and honestly, it really worked it's charm on me. After replacing the bridge, this guitar has become my workhorse among ESP, Dean, and Epiphone guitars. I love playing this guitar now that it has been upgraded, and a buyer would have to take that into consideration. I am very jealous of those ZR trems currently on Saber series guitars; that's the only thing I wish it had.
Reliability & Durability — 9
Like I mentioned, this guitar is very sturdy and stable. It will take a beating and not only survive, but not require repairs. The hardware is all very good quality, with the exception of that damn TRS bridge, and also is very sturdy. Of course, I also swap out strap buttons for Straplocks, and I also gig with a backup, but to a beginner with only one option, s/he would have no issues walking into a gig with only this guitar. The guitar is 12, and there are no mares or any issues with the finish. It is still as gloss black as the first day it was shipped out.
Action, Fit & Finish — 8
Obviously, since this a used guitar, I have no impression on factory set-up. But from my experience with Ibanez and my friends Who play them, Ibanez seems to be fairly consistant with their factory setups. Of course, with any floating bridge, there will be work required to make the guitar play the way you wish. This topic is fairly null because of the age of the guitar, but after twelve years, there are no scars, marks, chips, cracks in any of the guitar's appearance. Ibanez builds very solid guitars.
Features — 5
I found this twelve year old baby off craigslist in fairly decent condition and painted with old school Rusty Cooley bright green touches and an EMG 81 in the bridge. This guitar has a beautiful 22 fret neck, very smooth and very playable even without regard to it's bolt-on Status. A maple neck and a rosewood fret board with jumbo frets are fast and great for shredding. A five-way selector Switch is well positioned, as well as the single volume and tone knobs for the H/S/H pickup configuration. However, the original floating bridge on this guitar is the worst piece of crap you will ever see. It's a TRS model, which came into existance because of Ibanez wishing to make a few extra bucks off cheaper guitars. Don't ever buy a guitar with this tremolo without realizing you will have to upgrade it. Currently, mine sit's with an Original Floyd Rose in the bridge, which required no drilling or modification to the guitar. With all of it's original parts, I give this guitar a 5, but with the EMGs and OFR, I would give it an 8.