20th Anniversary RG Review - Jemsite
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post #1 of 83 (permalink) Old 03-31-2007, 01:53 PM Thread Starter
 
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20th Anniversary RG Review

I'm not the foremost expert when it comes to 80's Ibanez guitars, due to the fact that when I was a kid back then I couldn't afford even a 550. But, I will take a stab at a review of the 20th RG-DY I have here that belongs to a friend of mine. My DY is on order with Rich and hopefully will get here soon. I will edit this post later to include pics of the fret ends and other points of interest that I've seen mentioned in the main RG 20th thread.

First off the neck. This thing feels great! Like I said before, I don't really know what an original Wizard neck feels like since I've never gotten to play one for any appreciable length of time to know for sure... but I can say that the necks on these reissues are fantastic in their own right. The fretwork is actually not bad at all, despite the "clipped off" fret ends; which, by the way, are clipped pretty aggressively so the angle is steep and I cannot feel any sharp edges on the example I have when I am actually playing the guitar.

The neck joint is shockingly limiting compared to the AANJ. I knew this going in, but I never realized how spoiled I've been with the AANJ until playing this guitar. However, for me this is not a bad thing. I actually think it is really cool that they kept this part of the guitar original. I can fairly comfortably play the A Pentatonic box in the 15th position, but anything higher than that requires the Les Paul "wrap your hand around the joint" type of playing (though, obviously not as bad as a Les Paul). So this guitar, for me, works essentially like a 22 fretter that has a good neck joint.

All the fit and finish stuff on this example are excellent. Good paint job, clean neck pocket, well seated frets and nice straight neck (so far we'll see how well those titanium rods work in time).

I am not a big fan of the pickups, though I will say they are above average compared to just about anything Ibanez normally puts into non-signature guitars. These things are pretty bright and a little harsh. The neck pickup reminds me of the Hum from Hell I have in my 1570. That sucker is bright. Almost sounds like another bridge pickup... not at all like a PAF Pro or a Norton. The bridge pickup has a good amount of output and seems to my ear to be a bit trebly. I plan on replacing the pickups in my 20th when it arrives with PAF Pros and an SDS-1 single.

The Edge tremolo is pretty awesome! I can see now why so many people love this thing. It flutters for days, right out of the box brand new with new springs! I think it feels smoother and has overall better action than my Edge Pros... and I like the feel of the saddles better for palm muting. I always felt that the Edge Pro was too radiused in the saddles which sort of makes the strings feel like they're "floating" in mid air around the take-off point. For me palm muting is easier on the Edge and my JPM's Lo-Pro and I find both the Edge and Lo-Pros to be super comfortable in general.

Other than that I am not sure what else to mention. I played it yesterday after a good setup and for about an hour befor posting this today, both unaccompanied, and with backing music and I must say it is a BLAST to play! Anyone that has one or is about to get one is going to love these things. If these are anything like the originals, then Ibanez really got this right from the beginning.

Detail pics coming soon. This thing is a really bright yellow!


Ryan
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post #2 of 83 (permalink) Old 03-31-2007, 02:42 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: 20th Anniversary RG Review

Here are some pics:

I tried to get the color to show up as close as I possibly could. It's very hard to photograph as everyone who has tried can attest.


Fret ends:





--------------

Neck plate:



--------------

Pickups:



--------------

Headstock (back):



--------------

Full on shot:

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post #3 of 83 (permalink) Old 03-31-2007, 02:43 PM
Dee
 
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Re: 20th Anniversary RG Review

Ryan, I appreciate the review. Thanks. I think it goes without saying I am very eager to get mine.

Quote:
The neck pickup reminds me of the Hum from Hell I have in my 1570
Awesome. I love the HFH, it's the best Dimarzio neck pickup available, IMO. Maybe I won't even need to install one.

Great pics, btw.
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post #4 of 83 (permalink) Old 03-31-2007, 03:14 PM
 
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Re: 20th Anniversary RG Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by rrhea View Post
Here are some pics:

I tried to get the color to show up as close as I possibly could. It's very hard to photograph as everyone who has tried can attest.
Thanks for the review Ryan! I had to put on my sunglasses to view it I SOOO want an RFR!!!


Okay, just for the sake of comparision (and because I'm bored )

Here is the back of the headstock of the newer J-Craft Jem necks: (sorry bout the angle)




VS - the RG neck.


Question, how close do they feel / play in comparision????
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post #5 of 83 (permalink) Old 03-31-2007, 03:29 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: 20th Anniversary RG Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by JJEMMER777 View Post
Thanks for the review Ryan! I had to put on my sunglasses to view it I SOOO want an RFR!!!


Question, how close do they [volute and non-volute necks] feel / play in comparision????
Yes! This sucker emits light. You can't imagine how bright it is until you've seen it. An acquaintance of mine has a DY Jem (which I haven't seen ina long while) and I had forgotten until now just how bright that color is.

Good question on the necks. I just went to compare my '04 RG1570 to the RG 20th and the answer is... I can't feel a difference. When I play my 1570 the volute is far enough toward the headstock that I can't feel it there... even when bar chording an F or playing an F major scale with the thumb behind the neck in classical position. This is exactly how it feels to me on the 20th RG, too, without the volute.

I also have an RG1527 that is Team J-Carft and another '05 RG1570 that is also Team J-Craft and the volutes on those (to me) are not felt when I play either.

BTW, the neck on my '04 1570 (which is the pre-J-Craft 3 piece) feels extremely close to the same thinness of the new 20th neck. The 20th sounds much snappier unplugged though, probably due to the maple board.

Fun stuff!

Ryan
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post #6 of 83 (permalink) Old 03-31-2007, 11:53 PM
 
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Cool Re: 20th Anniversary RG Review

I feel that the RG DY reissue of the late 90's is a lot better, and has an AANJ!
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post #7 of 83 (permalink) Old 03-31-2007, 11:56 PM
 
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Re: 20th Anniversary RG Review

It's just damn beautiful! Thanks for the review
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post #8 of 83 (permalink) Old 03-31-2007, 11:58 PM
Dee
 
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Re: 20th Anniversary RG Review

I appreciate the AANJ, it's great, but this neck seems like it's gonna be a better one because of the 5-piece construction and titanium reinforcement, plus the subtle little touches like the trem cavity plate, neck plate, matching case, etc. I'd take the 20th if I had a choice. It'd be nice to own both, though!
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post #9 of 83 (permalink) Old 04-01-2007, 01:33 AM
 
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Re: 20th Anniversary RG Review

rrhea, thanks for the review, especially on the neck.
You have gotten me more excited than i already am to get one of these in my hands. I'm dying to compare the 550 neck to my 750.
Lovely pics too!
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post #10 of 83 (permalink) Old 04-01-2007, 09:36 PM
 
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Re: 20th Anniversary RG Review

I played the black one yesterday. It was at guitarcenter.

I didn't think the pickups were that bright. I thought they sounded really good though.

The guitar played and sounded awesome.

I'm dying for my RFR to show up.
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post #11 of 83 (permalink) Old 04-01-2007, 11:56 PM
 
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Re: 20th Anniversary RG Review

awesome stuff.
i'm dying for viewing one RG 20th in person IN MY LIFE!
Brazil is a very *****&¨%$##$@ to get decent Ibanezes...
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post #12 of 83 (permalink) Old 04-02-2007, 09:35 AM
 
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Re: 20th Anniversary RG Review

I need a 20th but I HAVE NO JOB!!!
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post #13 of 83 (permalink) Old 04-02-2007, 09:53 AM
 
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Re: 20th Anniversary RG Review

Looks a beauty! From those pictures I'm tempted to get one
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post #14 of 83 (permalink) Old 04-02-2007, 10:35 AM
Dee
 
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Re: 20th Anniversary RG Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt08642 View Post
I need a 20th but I HAVE NO JOB!!!
I had to sell my guitar to pay for one!
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post #15 of 83 (permalink) Old 04-02-2007, 10:47 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: 20th Anniversary RG Review

I am glad you guys like my humble little review. I've been playing this thing every day since my buddy dropped it off and it really is a great guitar. I have all kinds of guitars, JEM, JS, JPM, RGs and yet my fav "go to" Ibanez is my silver RG1570. I can easily see the 20th taking over that role.


Quote:
Originally Posted by guitarslinger213 View Post
I played the black one yesterday. It was at guitarcenter.

I didn't think the pickups were that bright. I thought they sounded really good though.

The guitar played and sounded awesome.

I'm dying for my RFR to show up.

Well, the pickup thing can be subjective. I'm used to an RG with a ToneZone in the bridge and anything compared to that pu sounds bright to me.

Nevertheless, I will say for sure that the pickups in the 20ths are very good and many, many people won't want to change them at all. I'm mostly doing the change for color, although I do want at least one RG with PAF Pros 'cause it's classic 80's.

Ryan
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