Is my guitar a RG550? - Jemsite
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-08-2003, 07:51 AM Thread Starter
 
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Is my guitar a RG550?

I got this guitar secondhand a couple of months back, it's a black RG which a pickguard,edge trem,V7,V8,S1 PU's and a rosewood board. The rosewood board is the only thing that is different to other RG550's that I've seen, everything else is identical. The store from which I got it was just some general secondhand store that sells all sorts of things (not just guitars) so they couldn't say which model it was. It is in mint condition and going off the serial no on the back of the headstock it is a Japanese made guitar and was made in '99. Like I say I'm pretty sure it's a RG550 but the catalouges only seem to show them with maple boards.

Also I recently borrowed some Seymour Duncans out of another guitar of mine to try out in this guitar, they are a Custom Custom bridge and a '59 neck leaving the middle SC as stock. Whilst they are nice good all round PU's I'll be putting them back into the guitar from which I took them and will be getting some new PU's for this RG so wot PU's would you recommend for a good all round sound ie good cleans and good dirty sounds? Real hot PU's to me a one trick ponies and rarely have a good clean sound so please don't recommend EVO's or TZ's. I heard the TZ on a LP a while back and the clean was totally useless-really bassy,dull and too hot-it was distorting on clean! Is the Dimarzio Norton a good all rounder? Duncan Sceamin Demon,Custom 5,Custom? Are even they too hot? The CC I have in now is rated as hot but it's not bad clean as I don't think it's a super hot PU. I was originally thinking of a JB but maybe that's too hot and trebly. I like the CC and '59 as they are really smooth sounding, so may still get them again if they are no better suggestions but curiousity makes me want to try something different. Dimarzio PAF PRO? Duncan Pearly Gates or Jazz for the neck? I don't like shrill or dull bassy PU's, I like smooth! Wadda'ya reckon?

Also since the guitar is all black I'm thinking of getting a new scratchplate cut in either tortoise shell or white pearl to lighten the guitar up a bit colour wise as I don't go for all black guitars normally-I only got this cos it was cheap(250-UK) and I do like RG's but black a least favourite colour of mine but at that price I couldn't say no. Anyway the PU's that are in now and the new ones will be white, along with the volume,tone and PU selector switches-these are little things that brighten it up a bit cosmetically as everthing black looks too death metal to me! So I'm not sure if the tortoise shell pickguard will go well against the black body and white bits- wot do you reckon? I know white pearl will go nicely and so to play safe I may get that but really but I'd prefer the tortoise shell-if it goes with a black body. Any pics or links to any black/tortoise combos?

Thanks.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-08-2003, 08:01 AM
 
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there are RG550's with rosewood fretboard. in fact, there's one on Ebay right now that's completely black w/o rosewood.
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-08-2003, 08:02 AM
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Welcome to JEMsite, Sir Axeman First I'm gonna ask you to set your location to your real world location please, town/city or just country.

Then I'll tell you that you've got an RG505. Not an RG 550. The RG505 was produced in the mid to late 90s as a stopgap whilst the range underwent some shifts around in the numbers and specs of the various guitars, but to all intents and purposes the RG505 IS and RG550, just with a different name on it

The Norton is just about as hot as the Tone Zone. the Tone Zone is actualy only 6% hotter going by DiMarzio's output figures !!!

For low output pickups I'd go for something like a Humbucker from Hell in the neck and a PAF Pro or a Fred in the bridge, but those might proove a little bright for your tastes. DiMarzio's range of "Air Buckers" have a relatively low output, and also less treble than most of their other pickups so you might want to try some of those pickups, Go to DiMarzio.com to read up on the various different ones available

I'm not too familiar with Seymour Duncans, but I know that a lot of folks like the '59 model and the Alnico II Pro humbuckers for general rock sounds.
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-08-2003, 08:50 AM
 
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perhaps rg 550 ex gk
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-08-2003, 09:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vdracula
perhaps rg 550 ex gk
No, not with a 1999 serial number on a guitar in the UK. That year's catalogue doesn't even have the regular RG550, it's an RG505. Just like a white JEM with gold hardware and and ebony board with a full vine will be a JEM7VWH, this guitar is an RG505.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-08-2003, 01:44 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks people! I feel I now belong somewhere, and that I have an identity!! wink: Well wot's your verdict on this guitar, and with a PU upgrade?
Oh, and wot exactly would be the difference between this(RG505) and the 550 model? Surely there must be something besides the model no?-there'd be no point otherwise. Anyway I'm pleased with it and I got it for a good price when I wasn't even looking to buy a guitar as I just stumbled across it accidently.

To my eyes the RG5xx range seems like a stripped down Jem- I mean one of the older basswood bodied types as it's the same wood and shape without the Dimarzio's,inlays,Lo-Pro,monkey grip and fancy paint jobs! Be not offended fellow Jemsters, just tell me wot the differences are please.

My other Ibanez guitars include a S540FM(I added a FRED in the bridge) and a RX750. (I know this is useless trivia )
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-08-2003, 01:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sir Axeman
What exactly would be the difference between this(RG505) and the 550 model? Surely there must be something besides the model no?-there'd be no point otherwise.
Back in 1995 the RG550 came with a lo-Pro edge, cosmo chrome hardware and a wizard neck with rosewood board. In the aitumn of that year they introduced the RG505 in the "Fall Supplement". It had regular black hardware and the original Edge bridge as well as I believe a Wizard II neck profile.

It was seemingly an attempt to introduce an RG550 slightly lower down the line as the original RG550 had been in 1987 without all the refinements that had crept onto the RG550 by 1995.

By 1997 the RG550 had been phased out and the models available in this style were the RG550LTD with sharktooth inlay and colour matched mirror pickguards and Lo-Pro trems in Cosmo Black, and the RG505 with dot inlays, the original Edge bridge and a plain black scratchplate.

In 2000 the RG505 was discontinued and replaced by the RG550!!! which had gone back to the original maple board and original Edge trem albeit in a new powder coated finish.

So in truth there's very little actual difference between the RG505 and the RG550 we have today with the exception of the fingerboard wood and the colour of the trem and tuners.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Sir Axeman
Well what's your verdict on this guitar, and with a PU upgrade?
I love them, an absolutely cracking guitar, made even better by retrofitted pickups
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-08-2003, 02:46 PM Thread Starter
 
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Out of curiousity wot guitars(and wot PU's in them) do you play jono?
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-08-2003, 02:55 PM
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Currently my main player is a Candy Apple Red RG770DX with the stock pickups IBZ USA F2, C3 and F4. But I have other RGs, JEMs and JS guitars for when the mood takes me

I use a variety of DiMarzio pickups as they come stock on a few of my guitars, in my RGs with changed pickups I've usually got Evos or PAF Pros.
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-14-2003, 01:22 PM
 
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The whole thing with the 550s with rosewood figerboards is interesting. As a matter of fact, I remember seeing a 570 with maple fingerboard. Jono, since you look like an expert, maybe you could figure out this one for me. Did Ibanez mass produced these or is this 570 modified?
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-14-2003, 01:38 PM
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I too have seen an RG570 with a maple board. I also seem to recall having heard that in the beginning, ie 87/88 or so, it was possible to order the RG500 series with either a maple or rosewood fingerboard from a store. As such most of the necks just said RG550 and then M or R on them for maple or rosewood respectively.

However I can't confirm whether this "custom ordering" process was available or not, it's just a very plausible urban legend.
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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-14-2003, 02:05 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jono
I too have seen an RG570 with a maple board. I also seem to recall having heard that in the beginning, ie 87/88 or so, it was possible to order the RG500 series with either a maple or rosewood fingerboard from a store. As such most of the necks just said RG550 and then M or R on them for maple or rosewood respectively.

However I can't confirm whether this "custom ordering" process was available or not, it's just a very plausible urban legend.
i'm not sure about the custom ordering process, but I've certainly seen RG550's from the around 1990 with a rosewood fretboard. btw, the RG570 wasn't available right from the beginning, was it? I think the first 5XX models were the 550 and 560.
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-18-2003, 11:19 AM
 
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I have a guitar like the one in question. The stamp on the neck says rg550R and the body is stamped rg550. It's black a body/pickguard with a black edge and rosewood board. there is no writing on the top of the pickups, which should make it a 1990, ser# is f7428561 if that helps. I've never seen an rg505 listed in a catalouge, nor have I ever seen an rg550R listed, but I have one, whichever it is.
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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-18-2003, 11:42 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by archer
there is no writing on the top of the pickups, which should make it a 1990, ser# is f7428561 if that helps
you have an unusual serial number for a 1990 RG550. I have a 1990 RG550DY and its serial number is F000998 and there's writing on the pickups. serial numbers back then should have 6 digits.
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-18-2003, 11:48 AM
 
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Sorry, thats F742861. The p-ups may not be stock, I just found this one today in a pawn shop for $99.00. I havent pulled the guard off yet, but everything looks all original except the knobs.
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