Ibanez AF55 Artcore Hollowbody Electric Guitar

Ibanez AF55 Artcore Hollowbody Electric Guitar

This electric guitar from Ibanez has the traditional hollow construction to prevent sound blocks in the body.

Overall User Ratings (based on 17 ratings)
Overall:
Sound:
Features:
Ease of Use:
Quality:
Value:
Manufacturer Support:
The Wow Factor:
Overall:
(17)
Submitted October 23, 2013 by J T in roswell, NM
"Nice"
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Took a chance, I'm glad I did...
Sound
I was surprised by the sound of this guitar. The neck pickup is a lot crisper than I would have thought... nicely warm though. The bridge pickup sounds.... above average, with a nice in between setting. The tone of the guitar is very nice.... articulate and... woody... for want of a better word. Cleans are gorgeous, dirts up nicely, with excellent sounds all around. I am very happy with the sound. The pickups are very 'alive' (some of you will know what I mean)
Features
I like the hinged truss cover... nice idea. I LOVE the finish. It isn't just 'flat', but you can feel the wood grain... like it's been stained and not finished other than that. It is very vintage, and looks beautiful in person. It truly looks like folk art in person. The bound neck is nice, and the frets were finished perfectly. The pickup selector toggle is the most firm feeling toggle I have ever seen. The machine heads feel cheesy to me, with a little play in them, but that is an easy fix... add the cost of that to the price of the guitar and you STILL have a good deal.
Ease of Use
Out of the box there was fret buzz and intonation was a bit off.... a tiny twist of the truss, backed the bridge away from the pickups a smidge, intonation was perfect, and action was perfect. Very low action. I see some people complained about the intonation, but a floating bridge is the easiest type to adjust intonation on... should be a non issue. Two small tweaks and some string stretching and it was playing and sounding perfect. It sounds gorgeous clean and dirty through a variety of Egnater and Orange amps.
Quality
I think the quality is above average at the price point, other than the tuners. I find it odd as I've never had issues with Ibanez's hardware before... but they do work just fine... just feel a little... cheap. Other than that... frets are perfect, finish is perfect, binding is perfect.... the guitar is gorgeous.
Value
This guitar is worth much more than it's price point, an incredible deal.
Manufacturer Support
I have a long history with Ibanez and have never had to deal with their customer service or warrant department. I've owned them for 25+ years.
The Wow Factor
Yet again... I bought it from online pictures because I 'had to have it'... and it delivers in person and then some, so there is a definite wow factor.
Musical Background:
Guitar - 25+ years
Musical Style:
blues, rock, funk, alt
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Submitted December 24, 2011 by a customer from hotmail.com
"Big bargain for just over 300$"
Sound with flats is pure Jazz. Don't expect to play metal or shred. Maybe a little blues...but this is what it says on the tin...... "Jazz Guitar"
Sound
With flatwound strings this, well designed full hollowbody, is sweet and retro sounding. It's simplicity of style produces a sound that is truly as good as many more expensive guitars. The pickups are also in many of Ibanez's more expensive guitars. Sound is vintage 30's to 50's with good flatwounds. Sometimes sustain can get in the way of the emotional atmosphrics of a guitar. This guitar has, with flatwound, an abundance of atmospherics that good Jazz needs. Not too much sustain, with flats. Try this surprise guitar.
Features
Basic feature. Simple tail plate. One tone and one volume control. Three way switch. Fairly laid back humbuckers that will follow the attack if you do.
Ease of Use
Perfect weight and balance make this as easy to play as possible. I have a very heavy Les Paul and a very heavy semi ES335 copy (Aria) which need a lot more minfulness.
Quality
I thought physically very good, but I had to get a luthier to get the intonation perfect, which was very poor from factory.
Value
For the money...amazing.
Manufacturer Support
No idea
The Wow Factor
Many people will not like the vintage finish. Bearing in mind that, often, vintage finishes are more expensive, some people will love it. For Just over 300$ this is really underprced. Get one before it gets pulled by Ibanez.
Musical Background:
Wish I played better. Still learning a lot.
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Submitted September 6, 2020 by a customer from comcast.net
"AF 55"
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I have an af 55 from zZounds. I read things about the pickups and tuners being not so great. I find the pickups just fine and the tuners perfect. I'd buy expensive stuff if I could but this instrument does everything a higher price one would do. I like to keep the volume low and the tone rolled back and I practice dry; not even reverb. When I want to I can get country; rockabilly; and blues tones with it. It'll do hard rock and metal but that's not me. It's not just a decent box that needs upgrades. It's a complete ready to go worth keeping for a lifetime instrument. I've seen and played lots of low priced fine instruments but this is the best combination of low price and good quality I know of and I've done some looking trying buying and owning. Your own taste and preference is paramount but I wouldn't put much stock in any criticism of this model. I'm very particular and I like everything about it. There are things I might do if I had money to burn but nothing needs work or upgrade. This is the second one of these I've owned. I sold the old one and tried other guitars then came back and bought this one again and I'm happy. The fact that it's one of the lowest priced ones you can find of any quality belies the fact that it's a professional quality instrument. That's just my opinion but I've been playing for 55 years and have a little part time professional experience and graduated a conservatory.
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Submitted September 9, 2013 by Pat Loren P in Belcourt, ND
"Ibanez is tops in Jazz guitars, why not a 1 3/4 Nut?"
When I first purchased it, I found that the Floating Bridge was Not set to scale.being a Guitar Tech---I Set the Bridge, and Saddles to Specs, lowered theaction, changed the strings, Filed the B & G nut slots, which were too high, andadjusted the Truss rod.....................Believe Me, this guitar did not come readyto Play ! The Pickups sound terrific in My Fender G-Dec Amp on Setting #21,(or the Nylon Acoustic Setting). For a Lower priced Jazz Guitar, (the samepickups are on Higher Priced Ibanez Jazz Guitars), this thing sounds Beautiful.The finish, (in it's Aged, Faded, Look), appears Expensive. The neck has a Perfect feel. The Guitar is Well-balanced. The Tuners hold their grip-good & Firm.I have been Playing for 45+ years, & this guitar gives me the type of sound Finger-Style Guitarists want. It's beautiful mellow sound is perfect Sunday Mass Music.My Modified Fender Strat, & Modified Tele, now take a Back seat on Sundays.If you were to purchase this for ANY venue, you will not be disappointed. Myinitial Adjustments, I'm Guessing, are not necessary on all AF55'S. I just wish this guitar had a 1 3/4 Nut.
Musical Background:
I have been playing guitar for 45+ years, in Lounges, Coffee Houses, and Sunday Mass.
Musical Style:
I Mainly Play FingerStyle Guitar. (Merle Travis, Chet Atkins, Gordon LightFoot). I also Play Christian,& Gospel.
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Submitted July 17, 2013 by Matt Copeland in Birmingham, AL
"Barebones...Basic model...purist hollowbody...and I love it!"
I sold a Gretsch g5120 for cash, and was looking around for a replacement. I picked up the g5120 to get a wide range of sounds, and found all I wanted to do was play my go to...jazz standards. Picked this guitar up for $289 (on sale) and can't be more pleased with it. It is as simple as it comes. Someone says it is the perfect jazzbox for them. It is for me. Someone else said it sounds like a "tin can." It can :-) I'm playing through a used Roland Cube30, and I get exactly the tone I like. Think Freddy Green (chomp chomp chomp). I'm no George Benson, I'm no Joe Pass, but for the sit-in sets I hang out around, I get everything I need from this guitar. I will say that I have to tweek my settings to get that. Mid & High about 12'oclock, and Bass about 9. I turn the tone down to about 3 and play through both pickups, or just the neck. Is it an L5? Hell if I know! Ha! But plug and play for $300, I couldn't ask for more. I find the weight of the guitar much better than the g5120, for me anyhow. Haven't noticed the intonation problems others are talking about yet. Stays in tune well. The strings dont buzz on mine, but you do get a strong acoustic resonance at low volumes (i.e. wife is asleep). The pickups are bright, and with flat EQ, the bass can be a bit boomy. Like I said, needs some tweeking to get where you want to be. If you're looking around for an affordable entry level guitar, you've got that right here.
Musical Background:
Been playing guitar about 15 years. Jazz interests, Jazz background, Praise Band recovery,
Musical Style:
Jazz, Blues; Acoustic folk
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Submitted June 23, 2020 by Bill Melvin in Portland, OR
"ibanez af 55"
I rate this as perfect in every category even if the price as much higher. I even like the flat finish. I've owned half a dozen Artcores and this is the 2nd time I've bought this one. I've owned many major US made major brand guitars of all types. This is my favorite and the price is what it is. It plays and sounds like a hig priced instrument and the feel of the neck is great. The tone amazes me. The consistency of the fret board seems perfect. Every detail is flawless. At this price I'd certainly accept some imperfections but I can't find any and I'm very finicky.
Musical Background:
55 years playing some profesional
Musical Style:
Play various styles. mostly jazz. Some formal schooling.
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Submitted March 20, 2021 by Bill Melvin
"AF 55"
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I've owned, Silvertone, Fender, Rickenbacker, Epiphone, Gibson, Guild, Alvarez, and several no name off brand. I rated the AF55 at all 5's on th one to five scale because of the price. I've learned enough to use tools and guages and find the imperfections and the AF 55 has them but they amount to nothing. I get a woody clarinet sound out of it and my quirky insistence on very low action with extra light strings works on this as will big fat Jazz strings with a normal setup or anything in between. This is just my own opinion and experience but this guitar is the most fun and easy to play I've ever had after playing it for a couple of years even without the dirt cheap price. I wrote a nice review right after I got it and this is a follow up on how I like it now that it's not new anymore.
Musical Background:
Playing 55 years; some part time pro exp.; some formal education.
Musical Style:
Chet Atkins wannabee and wannabee.
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Submitted December 20, 2011 by a customer from yahoo.com
"Ibanez does it again, quality guitar at a quality price. Great buy"
I'm going to keep it forever. Even if I get a much better guitar, this guitar has just made my life in music a lot easier.
Sound
Got mine awhile back, it was a huge difference than the Jackson Dinky I was using, but I'm in an indie band... The AF55 delivers a really pretty sound whether you are looking for a jazzy edge or as for me, an indie tone. I use this guitar for my more chilled out songs and on stage. It's a huge improvement from my last guitar and I don't regret trading both my Jackson Dinky and Ibanez V70CE. I would recommend this to anyone who is looking for a lighter sound.
Features
It's bridge isn't attached to the guitar which potentially could be a headache, if the bridge isn't in the correct spot you get flat or sharp frets and your strings will buzz a lot more than usual. The string buzz is also a huge headache in a recording scenario. But the guitar delivers just enough tonal control to have a rhythm guitar that can also play lead in the same song. Just the turn of a switch and you go from backing noise to a kick ass solo.
Ease of Use
This guitar is really easy to write with, no matter what genre you play, I wrote half of my bands demo with it (my little brother has also written a few post hardcore songs with it) it is good weight and riffs just come to you when you play it. I played mine through a pretty cheap Marshall Half-stack at my last recording sesh and the guitar flowed just as I needed it to, it plays just as good live as in the studio too.
Quality
This guitar is gorgeous, and it is built really well. the only things I would suggest would be to upgrade the pickups and strengthen the input (I dropped mine and the input caved in. 15 Dollar repair). Other than that it is a really amazing guitar and the stock pickups work just fine and it gives you the simplicity of a nice vintage guitar.
Value
If you've only got the money for this, get it. I have no regrets
Manufacturer Support
Haven't had to, the guitar is really nice.
The Wow Factor
I love the guitar, it has an amazing vintage look with a new wave sound that really pops in the particular genre I play. I do use a Strat to reach some levels of intensity this guitar can't provide, but I could use this guitar to get there too if needed. Buy it, that's all that need be said.
Musical Background:
I play whatever I can find. I'm better at some things but I play anything from Piano to Ocarina
Musical Style:
Indie/Blues/Garage Rock
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Submitted October 25, 2015 by Raymond Karle in Isle La Motte, VT
"Ibanez AF55 Artcore Hollowbody Guitar"
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Great looking guitar. Plays well...having fun with it. I found setting it up out of the box a bit tedious. Once I got it right, it seems to be holding tune. Good value for the money.
Musical Background:
Record in a home studio
Musical Style:
Folk, Jazz, Acoustic.
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Submitted February 28, 2013 by T,J, Allen in Yuma, AZ
"AFTER 45 YEARS OF PLAYING EVERYTHING WITH STRINGS"
unplugged your not going to sound like George Benson, the problem that has been addressed with the bridge is easily fixed, 1, use Diadario, 11-49 with a wound 3rd string, 2 bring the bridge as far foreward as it takes to tune the neck with the 3rd string in about the middle,3 adjust the truss rod until it has a reasonable amount of tension on it and sight the fret board from the back to make sure its straight, 4 tune the fret board from there, ( with a tuner, not your ear ) 5 whether you use a tube amp or a solid state, set your parametric EQ flat, and adjust from there, I've owned and played a lot of Gibsons, recently I was looking for another es 335, I have a freind at guitar center at phoenix. and he let me play everything he had in there over the years Gibson has had some problems with quality control. they are beautiful instruments and stand out among their field, but I have a problem paying 5,000 dollars for a guitar, believe it or not most of the guys that own those are either collectors or endorsed players, anyway I picked up an Ibanez artcore 335 knock off, and the first thing that struck me was the smoothness and attention to detail. it played well and was around 350.50 or so and I bought it, I've never had a regret, recently I ran across an AF55 and fell in love with it I set up the neck using the steps I detailed above, and it plays like a dream, I am a diehard sold Ibanes convert. they have instruments for any kind of music, but before you buy this guitar, put it in a stand, back up and look at it. it is what it is. if your buying this guitar for a punk rock or heavy metal application rethink your approach Ibanez has guitars for those applications but this is not one of them. have fun and good luck. if it's not fun don't do it.
Musical Background:
45 years blues country jazz and southern rock, 20years doing barband road gigs
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Submitted May 15, 2020 by Mark Brummeer in Yuma, AZ
"Nice Guitar"
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I ordered this along with a more expensive Ibanez semi hollow body and the arrived at my door at the same time. I immediately replaced the strings on the AF55 to flatwound Chromes extra light gauge. Tuned her up and plugged in and was greeted with a fat sounding big box tone which pleased my ears. One thing about this guitar is it being a true hollow body like a acoustic is that you can feed this back very easily if you are not careful. It also has sympathetic notes and my main one is B. That is not a good thing and I found myself using a dedicated 15 band eq to minimize the feedback. Once that is done it sounds exquisite. Playing it with distortion is quite an adventure because this guitar reaches feedback even at low volumes and that will become useful for recording. It is more at home with a nice clean setting though and can play blues, jazz, country and clean rock with ease. It is a jazz box first and its complex tones are right at home in that genre. I recommend this guitar who wants a quality full hollowbody for a ridiculously low price.
Musical Background:
Professionally 40 years
Musical Style:
Blues, country, jazz and rock
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Submitted December 28, 2013 by tom v in garner, NC
"CHANGE TUNING HARDWARE"
For me, this guitar is an eye catcher. I just like the way it looks. And I'm alright with the way it plays. Some guitars play better some guitars play worse. Figure in a person's talent level and opinions on which is the best playing guitar will change with each person. Sound can be modified with guitar and amp settings,...blah blah blah. My only complaint about this guitar relates to the tuning hardware. THIS THING WILL NOT STAY IN TUNE. Don't even have to touch it or play it,....the tuners 'unwind' under tension enough that in a few minutes, the strings relax and flat the note. Impossible to play because it's never in tune. Wouldn't even stay in tune long enough to intonate the strings. So, I like it, price was under 300, but I have to buy a set of Schallers so I can play it in tune.
Musical Background:
Playing music for 50 years. Piano, organ, harmonica, guitar. Weekend gigs, festivals.
Musical Style:
Singer/songwriter. Bluesy, folksy, Americana sort of material.
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Submitted July 26, 2013 by Lynton Adams in San Diego, CA
"Ibanez Artcore AF55"
This is an excellent guitar for jazz, blues, etc. For the money it can't be beat!
Musical Background:
Playing for 40 years.
Musical Style:
Jazz, blues, R&B
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Submitted November 30, 2011 by a customer from hotmail.com
"Cheap as chips. Sings like a mellow middle aged Diva."
Never satisfied. Always fascinated by guitars. But this is a keeper.Wish my playing was a lot better.
Sound
Look will appeal to some. Some will not like vintage look. Flatwound strings on this make a wonderful tone. Because the guitar is fairly minimalistic the sound is totally right for Jazz. Better sound than Washburn J5. How do I know...I have owned a J5. Try it.
Features
Full hollow body gives a sound uncomparable to both solid bodied or accoustic guitars. Came with soft, but good Ibanez case.
Ease of Use
My guitar was poorly set up by Factory. Intonation not good. But!!.......After my Luthierr set it up properly it sang. Weight perfect. Not to heavy and well balanced.
Quality
Actually very good quality for such a low cost guitar. Nice vintage finish.
Manufacturer Support
Not dealt with Ibanez.
The Wow Factor
Better than would be expected for the price...especially the sound after setting up and using good Thomastik flatwound strings. Lot of Jazz guitar for little money. Vintage style suits laidback Jazz. Very retro sound with flatwounds..sort of 1930's.
Musical Background:
Guitar. Not very well.
Musical Style:
Blues, Folk, Jazz, Pop, Eastern European
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Submitted November 19, 2011 by a customer from cfl.rr.com
"cheap price! cheap guitar..."
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
Im looking now and I have only had it for 3 days
Sound
Not very good
Features
sounds like a tin can
Ease of Use
after I set it up, it sounds like a tin can
Quality
I just got it
Value
its a wood guitar
Manufacturer Support
no I havent
The Wow Factor
little did I know
Musical Background:
playing a very long time over 50 years
Musical Style:
any thing that has a beat and I like it
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