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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-25-2017, 10:54 PM Thread Starter
 
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Jem77 PBFP Vs.

Hello...

Talk me out of buying this Jem77 PBFP.

(had to remove link to it at sweetwater because i'm too new to post a actual link)

It's listed above for $1,600.

Tell me why I should buy this Jem 7VWH instead for $3,000 listed here.

(had to remove link to it at sweetwater because i'm too new to post a actual link)

Can you tell me exactly WHAT would I be paying the extra $1,400 for exactly???

Let me give you some history on me...

In the early 1990s, like '91 or 92, maybe 90'.... I bought the Jem 7V White Jem brand new, and I also bought a Floral Pattern Jem, but it wasn't the Blue one, it was the Black one with the colored flowers and Green vine inlay on the fretboard. Incidentally, I also used to own a Multicolor Swirl Universe from that time period as well. So, it's not like I never played Ibanez Jem or Universe before, those are 3 that I owned, but I sold them all off about 18 years ago, and haven't owned any high end Ibanez guitars since.

Skip ahead to now... and I am wanting to own another again, but can't decide between these two. I'm leaning towards the BFP pattern because I like a Maple fretboard, and I think the Graphic of the Floral Pattern is even more beautiful than the original BFP and maybe even more beautiful or at least equal to the colored Floral Pattern I used to have. I also already own a White guitar, with a White pearloid pickguard with all gold hardware, so, I don't feel a strong need to have the 7VWH just for aesthetic value.

**** IMPORTANT INFO BELOW ****

I -HATE- Whammy bars/Tremelo bars, whatever you want to call them, with a passion, I absolutely LOATHE them! I don't like Fender strat bars, I don't like Kahlers, I don't like Floyd Rose, I don't like any of that crap! I think MOST whammy bar sounds are SILLY, CHILDISH, and I feel it DETRACTS from the actual music itself. Even HALF the time when Steve Vai is using a Whammy bar I seriously think it's nonsensical crap, wankery, and that the song/solo would be better without it. (There are a few times in music where a bar has been used where I think that sounds GOOD, I like that.... but it is very, very RARE, almost non-existent, almost.

(I do however believe that having a tremelo on a guitar can actually IMPROVE the tone of a guitar! Perhaps due to more wood being routed out, I'm not sure, I just know it DOES add some tonal magic just by having one on there, EVEN IF YOU NEVER USE IT. Example, I have played hardtail strats, and strats with whammy bars, with the same pickups in each guitar, and the ones with the tremelo just seem to have a bit of a more more lighter, open, airy, sound, like a natural reverb or something, maybe even a bit of a metallic tone, whereas hardtails seem to have a slightly deeper sound with a little more bottom end, a little more woody tone.)
*********************************

Anyway, back to the subject.... I had to include the "important info" above because I feel it helps put my situation/needs into proper context so that yall can help me make the correct decision.

So here's what I plan to do right off the bat with either guitar I buy.... I will block off the tremelo so that it can not be pressed up or down, probably use one of those no tremelos. I will also take off the locking nut clamps, I mean I will leave the nut in place, but I just won't use the 3 clamps. Instead I will have some locking tuners installed. I will also have Stainless Steel 6100 Jumbo fretwire installed. And I will be disconnecting the Tone circuit, and moving the Volume knob down to where the Tone knob is, this way I will only have ONE knob on the guitar (volume) as I never use Tone knobs on any guitars, and I never fiddle with volume knobs much anyway, and I can't stand for a Volume knob or any kind of knob to be close to my hand as I'm playing.

I don't care at all that the last 4 frets are not scalloped on the BFP. I have owned a custom 1 of a kind scalloped guitar as well as a scalloped YJM strat, and I hated them both. I don't like scallops. Besides, only having the last 4 frets scalloped seems like such a joke/novelty anyways.... the Monkey Grip was more useful and functional to me on my old Jems than the last 4 scalloped frets ever were.

I also do not care at all about the difference between Alder vs. Basswood.

I actually think I will prefer the shape of the Wizard neck over the Prestige shape as well.

So, I know that A LOT of peoples beefs with the BFP is the Edge Tremelo not being as good as some other tremelo etc.... but THAT is not even part of the equation with me, because I simply won't ever be using it, not a single time in my lifetime will I ever, ever use the tremelo.

So seriously... WHAT'S LEFT????????

I know some people complain about shoddy fretwork on the BFP etc, but I will be having mine refretted by Lee at GMW with SS Jumbo 6100 fretwire, so that too is taken out of the equation.

What about the pickups???

I've heard some people complain that the middle pickup in the BFP has a very noticeable drop in volume.
I've also heard some people say the Gravity Storm pickups are even better than the Evolutions when it comes to getting that late 80s early 90s Shred tone. Is that true???

Or, If I get the BFP, should I buy a set of Evolutions to replace the gravity storms with?

Again... can someone tell me what I'd be actually paying $1,400 more for? What would I seriously be GETTING for that extra spent money that I wouldn't already have and NEED/WANT in the BFP???

I remember when the original 7V White and the Floral Pattern (colored) came out, when I bought them brand new at my local music store I only paid somewhere between $1,500-$1,700 on each one of them. And now the 7vwh is about DOUBLE that. I understand inflation, however, I don't make DOUBLE the amount of income in 2017 than I did in 1990, nor do I typically have to pay DOUBLE for most things that I buy today that I also would have bought in 1990, seriously, I don't. That's a fact. (Nor do I see most other guitars jump that high in price. I bought a SRV sig Strat I think in 1998 or maybe even before then, and I think I only paid about $1,400 for it new, today they sell for only $200 more.)

So tell me what's going to be lower in quality 7vWH vs BFP when I don't care about body wood, I will install new fretwire and new tuners and I will block the whammy and never use it?

As far as I can see, I'd be a fool not to buy the BFP.... but I just wanna be sure that there's not somethings I may perhaps be missing?

Thanks!
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-25-2017, 11:16 PM
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Re: Jem77 PBFP Vs.

New JEMs made anywhere are grossly overpriced. Accept it and look past that if you are in the market. If you aren't using the trem then the Indonesian premiums make much more sense from a dollar standpoint if you want the Vai axe.

The VWH costs more as it's MIJ and have an upcharge for labor, better parts and market value. For you the PBFP seems to make sense more than a VWH.

I'd personally never buy any full size Indonesian axe at any price but that's me. I also haven't purchased a new JEM since the JEM90 though. Get what you want and who really cares.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-25-2017, 11:26 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Jem77 PBFP Vs.

Thanks for the info, I didn't know about the upcharge Japan has for labor.
Market value means very little to me, I mean resale value, because I don't plan to sell it.
My other 9 guitars I own consists of two Gibson Les Pauls, two Fender SRV strats, a custom Suhr, a Godin, a Taylor acoustic, a GMW Rhoads PDV, a custom GMW.
So this Ibanez Jem is to round out my arsenal as my 10th guitar.
I only use my guitars to record original compositions, they never leave my house.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 01:36 AM
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Re: Jem77 PBFP Vs.

First

$1,600 in 1990 → $2,996.62 in 2017

You may not make double, but the inflation calculator says it should be.

Second.

There are FAR better resources than Sweetwater....

[the EZ2 on the BFP actually has really good feel and action to it, it is not as good as a Edge or Lo Pro but it's issues lie elsewhere.]

Locking tuners and no nut pads is not the way to go. Lock the bridge if you want but a fully locking system is the way to go as a hardtail. A little fine tuner is all you need and it will always stay in perfect tune.
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 02:08 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Jem77 PBFP Vs.

I know what you mean by using the online inflation calculators, but I just don't buy into them. I still pay about the same price for most of the stuff I used to buy back then. I don't feel like I'm paying almost double for most of the stuff I buy in 2017 compared to what I paid in 1990. I just don't place much stock or faith into what those online inflation calculators suggest. (The only things that I feel really DO keep going up in price is cost of rent in an apartment each year, and cost of gas for cars)

Well, I guess that's a good point you made about just using the fine tuners... I will give that a try first instead of automatically resorting to locking tuners.

One reason why I've never bonded with any previous Floyd guitars I've owned is it seems like I stretch my strings, get it in tune lock the nut, and fine tune it, even though I start out with the fine tuners mid way... it seems like withing a week or two either the high E or B will be tuned as far down as the tuner will go, and then I have to unlock the neck clamp and start all the way over retuning the whole thing and then locking it back down again and fine tuning again.

It's just such a headache and frustrating and time consuming thing to have to go through such a process.

But maybe if I have the bridge locked down and don't use the whammy, it will be better.

The Whammy bar just never has seemed natural to me as a player, I do tons of big bends and wide vibrato with my fingers, I just feel my fingers can accomplish much of the same stuff that the Whammy does.

Sure I can't do the cool quick bar flutters that Vai does, but in that particular case, I feel like that is kinda Steve Vais signature move, to me it just sounds lame when others do that trick because it always makes me think they are trying to be Vai, but they aren't Vai, just seems like it's hard to be original while using that one particular trick, the vai quick bar flutter, that is.

All the Dive bombs, and "dimebag" pinch harmonic whammy squeals, and the way Vai just goes crazy whacking the whammy to death at like the end of a song as a climax....... sure those things can't be done with the fingers alone, but those things are just so novelty and don't really "make" the music.

I'm one of "those guys" that has always wished for a Jem hardtail, haha, I know we are RARE, but we do exist. (I know there was the one hardtail release, but man that Vai logo behind the bridge was soooo ugly)

I guess it's weird, I love Steve Vai, but not because of what he does with the whammy bar.

It just don't come natural to me. I have to think to much about how much pressure am I pushing down or up on it to bring it to the correct pitch.
And, it also distracts me when I'm composing, because I don't hear Whammy sounds in my head, so in the past it always made me feel like I was trying to find ways and places to work something into the song with the bar, and also when I put my hand on the bar my hand is then away from the strings and it just feels weird, like an interruption. I've tried to force myself to like the whammy bar and get good with it, because seems like most people love it and master it pretty easy, but I've just never been able to get anywhere with it.

It'd be awesome if one day people could just get the Floral Pattern finish/monkey handle/vine inlay on ANY Ibanez guitar for an upcharge.

Because if you could, I'd buy the BEST quality Ibanez possible, Hardtail of course, with those 3 things added to it. I'd have zero hesitation about spending $3,000 or even $4,000 for it.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 02:15 AM
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Re: Jem77 PBFP Vs.

You may not have faith in them, but they are accurate.

1990
Cost of a first-class stamp: $0.25
Cost of a gallon of regular gas: $1.16

Yup, doubled.
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 02:53 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Jem77 PBFP Vs.

Ok, Ok, I'm not disputing that, but.... anyone remember what a pack of D'Addairio or Ernie Ball 9-42 strings was back in 1990? haha
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 02:56 AM
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Re: Jem77 PBFP Vs.

About $2, and cigs were $1.40/pack!
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 02:59 AM
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Re: Jem77 PBFP Vs.

And a pound of weed cost what a good legal ounce costs today!
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 04:03 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Jem77 PBFP Vs.

Dang... I need a Raise! Or, a Delorean so I can go back in time and stop myself from selling my old Jems and Universe I used to have haha.

And we are supposed to be so thrilled about this new tax cut as if we are going to be getting back SO MUCH extra money.... math has never been my strong suit, but way I figure it if I get back about between 1 and 2% per week, that amounts to what, an extra $80 a month, MAYBE. What's that a extra $960 a year. That's CRUMBS. I mean that isn't going to make any significant difference in MY life, I mean yeah, it's better than nothing, and of course it's better to get back something vs having more taken out... but still I don't get how a person like me is supposed to think this is a BIG deal worthy of celebration.

When am I going to see a combination of some sort of tax cut/pay increase that would net me a extra $500 or even $1,000 each month, and have that keep up with future inflation as well???

If I ever see something like that happen, then I'd be excited.

But seems like the way life is, is that the poor stay poor, and all poor people ever get is a few crumbs every now and then that never really amount to anything noteworthy.

Tax cuts don't even buy you a nice guitar after a year, and pay raises barely keep up with inflation.

Seems like the only way to get ahead in life and have more is to find a higher paying field of work, or even better be in business for oneself so that you can pay yourself more.

That's why presidents/puppets never matter much to me, I'm 43 years old, and there's never been a president in office that has had much tangible influence on how much $$$ income I make.

But, on the other hand, isn't weed like 25 times more potent now than it was back in 1990? Maybe it's worth the higher price?

I wouldn't know though, I haven't smoked a joint in 20 years haha Even back then it made me hallucinate litterally, so I doubt I could even handle todays stuff haha

Anyway, interesting how the conversation turned into many other things organiclly haha

I have to say though that the first time I saw the Floral Jem, the 1st one I bought, my first Ibanez, I didn't even know who Steve Vai was! I just bought that guitar on looks alone without even playing it first! Of course after I bought it, I liked the way it sounded because it was my first time having a guitar that I could split humbuckers and then that middle single coil, it just seemed like so many tonal possibilities. Then about a year later I saw someone playing the 7VWH at the store and I thought wow, I don't know which is more beautiful looking, so I bought one of those too.

Then shortly after that, I found out who Steve Vai was, and I had to have the swirled universe like in the CD booklet for Passion & Warfare, so I got a used one, paid almost $4,000 for it.... I loved the way the Swirl and the pyramids looked, but I just couldn't bond with a 7 string and hardly ever played it, the 7th string just made the fretboard way wider than I liked, and I just never cared for notes that are so low they are in Bass players territory.

I do have a slight preference for Maple fretboards these days, and I don't buy used guitars anymore, so this BFP is kind of calling out to me.... I kinda miss my 3 old guitars, and maybe having a Jem again will somehow restore a part of myself back to myself somehow haha. I feel like maybe I should jump on this BFP before it gets discontinued.

If money were no object I'd probably buy them all or at least both the 7vwh and bfp haha, but money is somewhat an object, I can only justify one, and that maple board is speaking to me.

I think the new BFP is more beautiful than the original, it just looks more vibrant, and the all fits together nicely, like a total look with the blue vine. It kinda reminds me of something Picasso would have done in his Blue period, like I could picture the old man in his painting playing one of these.

I have played the new BFP a couple times at guitar center, but every time I go in there I try to talk myself out of buying it.

I only play through a Kemper profiler, and I haven't taken my Kemper and headphones to guitar center YET to try it out on my own profiles... but I imagine if I did, that would probably seal the deal for me.

It's hard for me to consider the price of the 7vWH though, I mean that's $3,000.... I can get a CUSTOM Suhr built to MY specs for that kind of $$$ or even less for a custom GMW.

I'm probably buying a Jem more for sentimental value and nostalgia than anything else, not to say I won't play it a lot, and not to say that it won't give me some different tones that my other guitars don't give, but if I'm honest with myself, I'm probably buying it 60% for sentimental/nostalgia reasons, and 40% because of the new tones it will add to my collection of paintbrushes.

On another note....

One has to really wonder, where would Ibanez be in 2017 if Steve Vai had never used their guitars?
Also, where would Gibson be in 2017 if Slash had never used Gibsons?

I think Gibson would have been just a little safer, but really, without Vai and Slash, I doubt either company would still be a giant in 2017. They would probably be smaller niche companies, like how ESP and Jackson are now.
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 04:15 AM
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Re: Jem77 PBFP Vs.

It may be more potent now but you could get way higher off a pound in 90' than you can an ounce today

BTW I sent you a PM earlier.
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 04:41 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Jem77 PBFP Vs.

Cool, I pm you back, not sure if it sent or not though cause I don't see an actual "sent" folder where I can confirm it successfully sent.
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 05:14 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Jem77 PBFP Vs.

Wow! I just checked out your page Rich... the Koch collection pt 2.... WOW! Yall had 29 of Vais DNA guitars under ONE roof! That's enough of Vais blood to give someone like a pint of a blood transfusion haha! That Desert Yellow Jem you have listed looks sweet with the maple board and pyramids. I remember taking lessons at a guitar store when that model had JUST came out and seeing one of the other students with one. And that Swirled GREEN one, I had forgotten about that one.

I love my Kemper because it killed GAS for Amps.... but man, there's just something about guitars, it just FEELS good to have as many as you can afford, even if you don't NEED them lol.
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 11:20 AM
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Re: Jem77 PBFP Vs.

bottom line is you're definitely wanting the BFP more for nostalgia. I'm not sure why you wouldn't buy used given the work you're looking to do with the guitar though. The chain you mentioned has 3 used blue florals. The inflation calculator masks that you can buy better, MIJ Ibanez RGs for less than the MII JEMs but that goes back to you wanting nostalgia. Good luck!
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 11:59 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Jem77 PBFP Vs.

Now that I've slept on it a bit, maybe it's a bad idea.

https://www.google.com/amp/s/mistymt...pros-cons/amp/

The above article was informative as well.

And maybe the Indo jem is giving up quality in more ways than just the whammy bar system for nostalgia, and now that I think more on it, that may not be so good.

After all Force Awakens was a bit boring and Last Jedi was the absolute worst, if that's so called nostalgia, then I will stick to the original.

Now after more thought and reflection, I think the $3000 jem 7vwh may be the smarter move.... With that I get both nostalgia and top quality.

With the Indo, I'm probably going to always feel like I made a compromise.
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