Price paid: € 700
Purchased from: A friend of mine
Sound — 8
The sound is what you'd expect from a high-end Ibanez RG, despite the fact that it uses passive pick-ups the guitar sounds very good, with heavy riffs sounding big and crunchy, and solos sounding clear and without noisy sound that you would not like to hear. I was using my beloved Marshall JVM-250C on full gain and the sound was good and clear. The guitar is not that much noisy reaching the sound qualities of a good Ibanez JEM guitar. I mostly play J-metal, J-rock, thrash metal, techno-goth, progressive metal and even technical-death metal and this guitar hasn't disappointed me. On clean mode the sound is at least passable, so I wouldn't really recommend it for such a thing (I personally like going full Necrophagist on this guitar, in the sounds of extreme unction). Pretty nice for the sound department too.
Overall Impression — 8
I play many style but this is my main industrial-metal guitar because of it's overall style and sound. I've been using this guitar since 2009 and play with it everyday, and it still feels like a brand new guitar. The thing I'd like to have though on this guitar is to replace my pickups with an EMG 81 and EMG 85 set, but is still very nice sounding. If it were stolen I'd just hunt down the thief, but if it were lost I'd just buy another one. The guitar is very expensive these days and very few have passed though auction sites and with very high prices too (sometime going as high as $13,000), so the price I paid is actually great and I'm very happy about it. If you like H.R. Giger's artworks and you want a beautiful instrument for metal music, this is an amazing choice, which unfortunately, will break your bank. Video from YouTube:
Reliability & Durability — 9
The first thing I did is to put strap-locks on the guitar in order to make it more reliable, I take good care of my instruments so I don't know how this guitar would react to a sudden bang on the wall, but it looks very sturdy, it's mahogany body is light and I like using it on live gigs and especially when I play industrial music since the guitar screams for sounds of Nine Inch Nails, Ministry and more electric music such as Noisia and Combicrhist. I always take a back up guitar with me but there was no need for using one so far and the guitar is really reliable and the finish is just a head-turner, since many people ask me about it after shows.
Action, Fit & Finish — 8
The guitar was set from my friend before I bought it from him, and it was set very nice since he is a guitar technician. For the record, I actually asked him to tell me his initial experience with it and here are his worlds "My SHRG1Z was set pretty descend, the action was a little high for my taste of music and my playing style, but I got easily around it and set it as low as possible, the frets were buzzing on the middle of the neck, which I also fixes easily. The bridge was actually set very nice and it needed just a little more adjusting to be perfect (something I also fixed). The finish was amazing throughout the guitar with it's distinct engraved graphic, a piece of ART that very few guitars have these days and I really like it." Myself, I put some 11 cauge Ernie Ball strings to make it even better and now it plays like a dream.
Features — 7
The most obscure and strange instrument that I own, the Ibanez SHRG1Z is a Ibanez model from the H.R. Giger limited edition models, with this in particular being the rarest of the series (with only about 2,000 made). Mine is one of the first models, made back in 2007 in Korea. It has an Ibanez Wizard II neck with 22 jumbo frets, and special made fret inlays on a high quality rosewood fret-board on a 5 piece maple neck. The body is metal-coated mahogany with laser-engraved graphics. The body style is your ordinary Ibanez RG style. The bridge is a ZR tremolo with passive electronics. The controls given are 1 volume and 1 tone knob, with also a 5-way switch for the pick-ups. The tuners are Ibanez locking tuners and the hardware uses an antique Vintage silver color that matches the whole guitar. Included with the guitar is a nice and sturdy hard case. Overall, pretty good.