My thoughts on the JEMvwh - Jemsite
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-19-2004, 12:14 PM Thread Starter
 
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My thoughts on the JEMvwh

First of all, ever since Ibanez started making these guitars, I've wanted one. Especially after playing one for the first time 4 years ago. Well, I FINALLY saved up enough money to buy one...this was my dream guitar!


About 2 months ago, I bought a brand new 2003 JEMvwh. By all means, an awsome, and beautiful guitar. As always, I had to set the guitar up because is was so far out of whack, that it just didnt play good at all. The bridge was way out, not level, wouldnt hold tune, and too far up off of the body. The intonation was right on though. After setting the bridge up, I noticed several buzzy frets, I am assuming this is why the trem was so far out of the body, to raise the strings to prevent buzzing. The neck was straight, and the action was good at both ends, which in turn lead to a few frets that needed dressed up. After getting the guitar all set up just right, it absolutely played very well.


The stock "evo" pickups that are in these guitars just do not suit me at all. They have plenty of gain, but just have a tone that I dont care for. I didnt realise how much I didnt like them until I A/B'd it with my RG620x. I use a "Tone Zone" in the RG. So I bought a white SD "Pearly Gates" pickup for it and the sound got even worse. Ugh! I hated that pickup in this guitar...So I pulled it back out and said screw it. Then I bought an Ibanez "backstop" for it off of eBay to help with the tuning problem. Any time I did a dive, the tuning would go sharp, and just the opposite when I pulled up on it. I also took the trem out and filed the knives like it says on Ibanezrules.com (thanks Rich) and it still wouldnt stay in tune. The only other thing I could have done was buy a set of trem anchors and did the mod for it. I am sure that a professional setup would have done the trick, but by this time, I was tired of messing with it.

Now, in a nutshell, in my opinion, let me repeat, in my opinion, the JEM wasnt any better than my RG620. One plays just as good as the other, and my RG stays in tune perfectly...Never have any problems with it. I paid $1600 for the guitar $100 for the backstop, and countless hours trying to get the thing to where it played flawlessly, but still didnt like it as well as the RG. I ended up selling the guitar for $1100 just this past Friday. I should have just bought a used RG 3120 instead. However, other than the JEM10th, this is the best looking guitar I've ever seen. But I wanted one to play, not to look at.

Please dont take this the wrong way and think that I am dogging the JEM, or picking on anyone who owns them, this was just my experience with having one, and wanted to voice my opinion on it because there are alot of thread containing "should I spend the $$ on a JEM, or buy a MIJ RG?".....Please dont flame me for stating my thoughts.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-19-2004, 12:18 PM
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this is a customer service issue (ibanez and the dealer) but no doubt there are many people with similar experiences who will undoubtedly purchase axes like Gibson/PRS next time instead of a $1600 ibanez. Not that Ibanez seems to care... glen
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-19-2004, 12:23 PM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jemsite
this is a customer service issue (ibanez and the dealer) but no doubt there are many people with similar experiences who will undoubtedly purchase axes like Gibson/PRS next time instead of a $1600 ibanez. Not that Ibanez seems to care... glen
Yep, you are right. I can no doubt see that since the guitar wasnt set up right, that it put a bad taste in my mouth, but over all, (excluding tuning and set-up issues) I liked my RG better. I was expecting twice the guitar than my RG. Maybe I hyped it up too much for myself, I dont know. Oh, I did want to point out one thing I liked about the JEM, I liked the LoPro trem more so that the edge on the RG, simplt because of having more room to rest my hand.
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-19-2004, 12:24 PM
 
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Sorry to hear about your lack of satisfaction with the 7vwh , my friend bought one from florida on ebay , he had those problems you mentioned also. He cured them by taking it for a professional setup , I certainly agree with you about the sound of the evo , I love steves tone , but with my gear the Evos sound way too harsh for me , so I swopped the evolutions i bought for my RG with a PAF Pro and a Tonezone , BIG improvement. I love the sound of my guitar now
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-19-2004, 12:56 PM
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Re: My thoughts on the JEMvwh

Quote:
Originally Posted by Powerball
Any time I did a dive, the tuning would go sharp, and just the opposite when I pulled up on it. .
Classic symptoms of a walking nut.
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-19-2004, 01:21 PM
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The jem7vwh I got from Rich plays absolutely perfect. If your jem would've been setup properly, your high expectations probably would have been met. Although you would have still had to swap the pickups for something that sounded better to your ears.
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-19-2004, 01:33 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Powerball
Maybe I hyped it up too much for myself, I dont know.
Expectation is everything!

I'm sorry to hear that you had such a crummy experience. My Jem was a pain to finally get set up properly, but I took it as a learning experience and I plan to keep it forever. It's certainly not twice the guitar that my Washburn is, and I doubt that it's twice the guitar an RG is...mainly because I have no idea what you mean by that concept. :P

My Jem is certainly beautiful, but I would sell it if the playability wasn't there. Thankfully it's a good match and fit for me. I would hope that you're not flamed here, because there are thousands of people out there who'll either loathe the Jem for its playability/aesthetics or just plain think "yeah whatever, it's okay but I prefer _insert your fave brand here_".

Good for you that you tried it and have the knowledge to now get closer to your ideal guitar.
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-19-2004, 01:36 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: My thoughts on the JEMvwh

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich
Quote:
Originally Posted by Powerball
Any time I did a dive, the tuning would go sharp, and just the opposite when I pulled up on it. .
Classic symptoms of a walking nut.

LOL......When I first looked at your reply, I thought you were referring to ME being "the walking nut"....ha ha ha...


Thats good to know though Rich...Thanks
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-19-2004, 02:08 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jemsite
Not that Ibanez seems to care... glen
yeah, tell me about it.

Its amazing that a community as grand as jemsite can't change that. What better place to go to get feedback if your ibanez then right here. We all know they come here, they've mentioned us before, and we should try to do something about this. Our loyalty makes us deserving of some attention.

I had similar problems with my 7vwh...I had to break Rich's nut sack (both sides) for help on tuning issues. It helped it out, but the pro's put the finishing touches on it.

Mine was shipped with...a/ an uncomfortable neck bow
b/ action wAYYYYYYY to high
c/ bridge out of position
d/ sharp fret ends (which I'm still working on)
e/ bridge not tightened properly (you know that
screw you have to reach deep down into the post
to tighten? well it was loose)
f/ tuning heads so tight they would barely move unless your name was Hulk Hogan.


Luckily, even with all the problems, I could still tell the axe was the right one when I purchased it. Since then, its become a dream machine, but as I said, the frets need some work (thanx to rich, my only true idol for helping).

I hope you can find some guitar happiness powerball
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-19-2004, 02:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davester1234
Quote:
Originally Posted by jemsite
Not that Ibanez seems to care... glen
yeah, tell me about it.

Its amazing that a community as grand as jemsite can't change that.
It's actually not surprising when you consider the 4+ "friends" of jemsite from Hoshino USA (who were 100% on the ball - unlike Ibz Japan) have been relieved of their position or quit. With each loss comes a greater void that is not being filled.

Less is less.

Quote:
Originally Posted by davester1234
What better place to go to get feedback if your ibanez then right here. We all know they come here, they've mentioned us before, and we should try to do something about this. Our loyalty makes us deserving of some attention
Ibanez Japan doesn't want feedback and has zero loyalty or concerns about the audience here. Their actions have proven this beyond a shadow of a doubt... glen
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-19-2004, 02:57 PM
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I think we are to also to blame a little bit, because we are still buying. Other companies are to blame BIG TIME because they had 20 years to come up to par to Ibanez in the superstrat market, and failed.

The truth is that the introduction of the Edge/Lo Pro Edge along with a wide array of innovative finishes and looks gave Ibanez the upper hand on this market, and it has managed to retain it.

They stopped the Amreican Master series, in fact all Amreican made/asembled Ibanez. They stop putting the locking studs. They narrowed the coulour chices to a point where there is almost only one colour to chose for each model. They lowered the RG series to the up to the RG170 series wich still bears the Ibanez brando on it. They introduced a diminished line of signature series. I could go on forever.

And we keep buying

The fact is that sales are the most important way of feedback to any kind of company.

I m really impressed that another company hasnt pop up to fill the gap and benefit from our increasing disapointment with Ibanez.
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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-19-2004, 03:05 PM
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yup... but all good things come to an end. ibanez will realize this soon enough... glen
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-19-2004, 04:05 PM
 
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My problem is that I have a difficult time liking other guitars. Doesn't mean I never have/will like anything else, but my jems are like second nature to me. I've played a 777vbk since I was 12, and when I turned 24 I bought myself the vwh. taking a stand and switching brands at this point is just not a feasible alternative. I feel like I can't do things properly on other guitars, even high rg series. Of course, that's probably just my attachment to the instrument talking. Perhaps I've made myself believe my jems are more neccessary to my playing than they really are.


Either way, its between a rock and a hard place for Ibanez enthusiasts. Nevertheless, as Glen said, you can't abuse your customers forever without it catching up to you, and having some sort of negative impact.

Truth is, I don't know how well ibanez is doing, but the downsizing of the product line as mentioned in this thread is either a way to soak people, or a signal things aren't good.
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-19-2004, 06:51 PM
 
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Before I bought my 7VWH, I had researched this site immensely. So I was fully prepared to have to completely setup my guitar when I got it. Luckily, I only had to lower the bridge height a little and set the intonation. I was not happy when I cut two fingers on one of the fret ends, though.

Hoshino's main purpose is the same as any company: turn a profit. That means that if they can reduce their offerings and/or quality and still make money, they will.
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 04-20-2004, 04:21 AM
 
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Powerball, I assumed you were talking about a secondhand guitar. Apparently not. My advice to any Jem buyer is this: buy it from Ibanez Rules. Chances are you'll pay less and get a superior product. I've played enough sucky Jems, but both from personal experience and comments from others, Rich's guitars are consistently better.

Sorry, Glen, if I got too sappy...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Powerball
Please dont take this the wrong way and think that I am dogging the JEM, or picking on anyone who owns them, this was just my experience with having one, and wanted to voice my opinion on it because there are alot of thread containing "should I spend the $$ on a JEM, or buy a MIJ RG?".....Please dont flame me for stating my thoughts.
BTW, usually those people that get flamed are those that are arrogant, come on too strong, and state their opinion as fact. You did well describing your experience and you weren't a jerk about it. Hence, no flaming required.
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beautiful guitar , engl screamer , fret buzz , hoshino usa , locking stud , locking studs , lopro trem , neck bow , neck relief , paf pro , pro edge , tone zone

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