The Jem Jr is an RG450 in disguise - Page 5 - Jemsite
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post #61 of 62 (permalink) Old 08-03-2020, 04:02 PM
Join Date: Jul 2016
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Re: The Jem Jr is an RG450 in disguise

I have played for 25 years, and adore Ibanez guitars. I have had about 20 or so Ibbys in my time (and a few other brands), mostly S-series guitars ranging from early to mid-90's Japanese models to relatively modern Indonesian made fare. I currently own a Japanese-made 540SOL, a heavily modified RG470AHM and a Laguna body with an EX-series neck on it (the best playing of the bunch). I just bought a used Jem Jr from GC without laying a hand on it, and at a steal of a price. Want to know why?

I can do fret work, shim, drill or fill, or otherwise modify anything I want to my liking. I know I won't be getting a $1500 + Jem, and I don't care. I like the look, like Steve, always wanted a Jem, and if there is any guitar you'd want to hot rod and not feel stupid for doing so, it would be a Jem Jr.

You'd feel pretty dumb trying and failing to mod a $1500 + Jem, wouldn't you?

We aren't talking the difference between a GIO and a $2,000 RG here. And whomever says the Jr isn't a real Jem must forget that Steve endorses these guitars, too. More inexpensive doesn't align with 'cheap', and a player's wants and needs are individual. To that end, I don't want to spend that much on a guitar.

I played a floral Jem in a shop once... was not blown away. I much preferred a Peavey V-Type EXP model, and bought it used for 200 bucks instead.

Lastly, for the elitists that scoff at the Jem because it isn't expensive (or a 'real' jem).... EVH set the world on fire with a parts guitar.... so did George Lynch... so did Brian May.... and even Steve's pre-jem guitars were not nearly as pricey as the stuff he puts out today, and with none of those features. Let your playing, and not the price of your equipment, do the talking!
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post #62 of 62 (permalink) Old 08-24-2020, 08:44 AM
Join Date: Aug 2020
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Re: The Jem Jr is an RG450 in disguise

That's pretty awesome that you did so much stuff to that guitar.

I can confirm that the Jem Jr. is not quite an RG 450 in disguise - I feel that it's a slightly more polished instrument overall (I own both a Jem Jr. and an RG 450). Plus spending an extra $100 to make sure you virtually never ever step on your cord and have it pop out of your jack is maybe not the worst idea.

I bought a Jem Jr. this past December and made various modifications. Here's what I did:

- swapped pickguard: replaced with Warmoth pickguard sheet
- swapped pickups: Seymour Duncan Jazz, Quarter Pounder, and JB in the neck middle and bridge respectively
- swapped bridge: installed a Floyd Rose tremolo
- swapped electronics: had a terminator 10 Wiring system installed to maximize tonal clarity and variety
- swapped volume knobs: acquired Fender Top Hat knobs

Here it is below. Was it worth all the work I did? Yes and no. What I've ended up with is a one of a kind guitar that looks exactly how I like, plays very well and does virtually anything I need it to do sonically. You'd think that'd be all you could ask for. However, I will say, I have a blue floral CIJ telecaster from 1990, and when I pick that thing up and play on it unamplified, something about it just kind of rips. A very specially made instrument is exactly that, and no amount of modification can change that. However my Jem Jr is amazing and I love it without feeling like I need to get all cranky if a corner of it gets chipped or something. It will never truly be anyone else's and it will always be miiiine. As far as compared to the 450, my Jr. just feels way more solidly built with better wood idk

Modding my instrument was to me less of an investment and more about creating the perfect tool to execute my creative vision. I will also say I do in retrospect prefer the neck on an RG 550. If I could just snag one of those necks I'd be all set heh.
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