Price paid: € 499
Purchased from: Feedback Utrecht
Features: This mega-thin Ibanez superstrat was made in 2010 in Indonesia.
It has a 22-fret Wizard-style maple neck with rosewood fretboard - very thin but nonetheless easy to hold.
It has a mahogany body and a flamed maple top - a classic look also found on Les Pauls. The difference is that this has a matte finish, many Les Pauls have at least some gloss to them.
It has Ibanez' own ZR trem - A very nice double-locking tremolo that is very hard to get out of tune. The zero-point system is kind of unnessecary in this, but it feels nice to me so I'm leaving it in.
Pickups are in HSH configuration, giving the versatility I need.
This guitar comes with its own toolkit and a cable. The cable isn't very reliable though - I barely played it for an hour before it cut out on me.
8/10 - The ZPS might not be your cup of tea, but you can remove that easily. Also because of the crummy cable. // 8
Sound: There's good and bad things to be said about the sound of this guitar. Overall, it sounds REALLY nice unplugged. You can really hear the wood Shine through.
The slightly worse thing is when you plug it into an amp - the stock INF pickups do a bit of everything, but a lot of nothing, if that makes sense. The positive is that there's almost no noise. Overall, I reccommend swapping out the pickups if you have the leftover money.
7/10 for lackluster pickups. // 7
Action, Fit & Finish: The set-up from the store was marvelous - in fact, the only thing I had to do after getting it home was tune it. The top isn't bookmatched, but I personally don't mind.
No immediately obvious flaws, either. Overall, I'm giving this a 9 out of 10. The lack of bookmatching may not bother me, but it might someone else. // 9
Reliability & Durability: This guitar looks fit for gigging, and it is. My guitar has fallen 1 and a half metres without so much as knocking it out of tune. Hardware feels solid and will last forever if you don't drop it into a pool or something stupid like that.
I would use this without a backup at a gig - I would bring a second guitar for different tunings though.
I have heard stories of the tremolo arm socket breaking after a few divebombs. This has not happened to me, but it is definately something to watch out for when buying a non-Prestige Ibanez S series.
Overall, 8/10 because of the horror stories surrounding the tremolo arm socket - you can find replacements for 12 bucks though. // 8
Overall Impression: I play mainly instrumental metal (think Vai, Satriani and Gilbert) and this guitar is absolutely perfect for that - it's fast-playing, versatile in its sounds, and feels really nice and light.
I have been playing for two years now, and have a VGS Screech and a Peavey Valveking amp.
If this guitar were stolen or lost, I would definately buy it again. I got this particular one at 170 euros off because of the new stock arriving that day, but it would be worth the full price to me.
I love how thin this guitar is, but the pickups are sort of lackluster - then again, 7 out of 10 Ibanez owners swap them out anyway. My favourite feature is that the ZR Bridge allows you to set spring tension with a thumb wheel - I hate having to pull the backplate off on my VGS just because I want to droptune it.
I have compared this to the new Ibanez RGs and Jackson Dinky guitars. The deal-seller on this one was partially that this particular guitar was the last in stock and came at a rather large discount, but also that it feels much more comfortable to me because of the thin, contoured body.
Overall, this guitar gets an 8/10, and the PsiGuy60 seal of approval. // 8