Submitted January 12, 2016 by Shawn Reese in Cleveland, OH
"Great axe, veritable metal machine"
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I got this axe because I had played a friend's RG some years ago and always wanted one. This has Quantum pickups, and the other's I had played previously had INF, which I liked. Quantum pickups are surprising in that they are not high output, but that is the very reason they don't "mush out" at high gain. I'm going to try other pups, but for metal only, these are indeed good pups, with good articulation. The standard DL trem is pretty good, doesn't seem to have the range of other RG trem bridges, but is solid and stays in tune. The setup took a long time, toook me about 8 hours, then after sitting overnight, I readjusted it. Took so long because i set it up for drop C and had to redo the intonation, and changed the strings. Once done I have been very satisfied with the the results. This axe is worth the money. It's a metal axe. If you want to do classic rock and other stuff, you must change the pups because I don't think Quantums sound good for classic rock or clean. So get it, just use the manual for set up instructions, take your time so you don't screw it up, or have it set up at your local shop. Action is great, very fast, you'll be happy with it.
Good quality, better than I expected. Ibanez has been making RGs for many year's and they know what they're doing. You can hear this actual guitar stock on soundcloud, I made this recording with it on Jan 8th, 2016: https://soundcloud.com/shwan-dereese/1-8-16-metal-ib
The wizard neck is great, it happens to be one piece quartersawn. Ibanez originally got away from one piece because they would warp, but they weren't quartersawn. Then Ibanez discovered that they could make a durable one piece wizard if they used quartersawn maple for strength (one piece refers to the length below the headstock, it's actually a two-piece.) #1 least useful is the third trem spring, it came out when I set it up, don't need it. #2 is the middle pup, definitely going to be replaced some day, as it's weak and not a good tone. I think it's Alnico V, and I usually prefer Alnico V pups, but this one sounds like a lemon. nuff said.
Ease of Use
It's easy to get great metal sounds with a high gain amp or distortion box and amp. It's close to pitiful for clean and classic rock IMO, but all you have to do is put in a more versatile set of pups. I think most people expect that when buying this model. I didn't like the quantums at first, but they are growing on me, because I intended this for metal, and they are really good for metal.
It's well made and looks great. I've never been a fan of white axes, but I really like the looks of this one. I'm getting some cheap high output replacement pups, with black and white coil covers to match the guitar, and think they'll be fine. I have a Duncan for the neck, and will compare the performance of the cheap high output bridge pup i'm getting with the Quantum. If el cheapo sounds crappo, i'll just put the quantum back in.
I firmly believe this guitar is a better value than practically all guitars in it's price range, probably just a few exceptions out there. I would go so far as to say this is one one of the best values dollar for dollar in a new metal axe... If you want a great metal axe on a budget get this, and build on it with pups etc. if you need to. But out of the box, and post setup, you'll be shredding away... it's a fun axe too!
I did email them a few days ago about their pickup wiring, and they haven't responded. I also scoured their website and even authorized dealers, my guess is they aren' t in busines to provide support for their cheaper line products. I don't blame them, the guitar is a good value.
The Wow Factor
It looks great, sounds killer, feels good. It's fast and gets the job done.
40 years mostly guitar electric, some acoustic. a little keys. Pro briefly in the 80's, lol! lived guitar hero, went home.
Classic rock, rock, metal, progressive, blues, a little jazz, love it all. I play just about any kind of guitar music.
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