Should I get the SZ320mh or SZ520qm? - Jemsite
All Other Guitars (including Prestige) Discussion about other Ibanez Guitars not covered in the above topics. Includes J-Custom, USA-Custom, Prestige subforum.

 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-08-2005, 07:32 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Marshall,IL
Posts: 34
Should I get the SZ320mh or SZ520qm?

I'm in a bit of a quandry here. I have a decision to make and it's getting more difficult every day.

First off, a few weeks ago I was looking at buying a new guitar and settled on an Epi Les Paul Standard +. The wife wasn't much for going to the music stores and I only played a few guitars before settling on the LP.

She was out of town last week, so I went and played a lot of guitars (25+). If I had seen the SZ guitars before, I NEVER would have spent $600 on the ELP! So I talked to the guy who sold me the LP and he agreed to give me store credit equal to the price he could get for the LP as a used guitar, which was $425. He told me I could get an SZ320 straight up or an SZ520 for $50 more. Well, my reasoning at the time was that I already was essentially paying $600 for an SZ320 and I really didn't want to spend $650 on an SZ520. So I had him order me an SZ320MH. It's supposed to be here some time this week.

But since that time, I'm considering just having him put the 320 on his wall and giving him $50 for the 520. At times, I'm in love with the Amber Burst quilted maple. Other times I'm in love with the raw oiled mahogany of the 320. So I suppose looks have become a wash in the decision.

So I'm looking for opinions on other differences, so a few questions for those in the know:

Would the 520 hold its value better with the quilted maple, making it worth the extra $50?

What about the body composition? Am I correct in my understanding that the 320MH has a mahogany body with a mahogany cap, or is it one solid piece?

Also, what about the tonal differences in a mahogany body vs. a mahogany/maple body? Would the 320 tend to be a brighter tone than the 520, much like the all-mahogany SG vs Les Paul?

These are pretty much going to be the deciding factors for me. The fancy inlay on the 520 is pretty meaningless.

Thanks.
bossfrog is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-08-2005, 08:14 AM
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: NB Canada
Posts: 3,467
Re: Should I get the SZ320mh or SZ520qm?

The 320MH does have a Mahogany cap. I think you should play the 320MH and the 520. Maybe one will stand out as a better player or sound better in some way.
As far as value goes the 520 would probably get a little more money as a used guitar. But I wouldn't let that influence me in buying. Buy the one YOU like.
Rotti is offline  
post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-08-2005, 08:28 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Marshall,IL
Posts: 34
Re: Should I get the SZ320mh or SZ520qm?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rotti
The 320MH does have a Mahogany cap. I think you should play the 320MH and the 520. Maybe one will stand out as a better player or sound better in some way.
As far as value goes the 520 would probably get a little more money as a used guitar. But I wouldn't let that influence me in buying. Buy the one YOU like.
Problem is, I like them both, but I'm NOT buying both, heh.

I don't hear a lot of difference in them, but the store I'm getting it from has lousy acoustics and it's sometimes hard to tell subtle differences. Heck, you can't even tell the difference in a Gibson LP vs an Epi LP in that place.

As a rule though, wouldn't one expect the all-mahogany 320mh to be less bassy though, like the SG? That's really my last question on the matter.

I guess one way to look at it is like this... if they were the same price, I'd go probaby with the 520, so maybe I should just pay the extra. After all, what's $50 a few months from now?

I'd still be interested in opinions on all-mahogany vs mahogany/maple though in terms of tone.
bossfrog is offline  
post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-08-2005, 09:35 AM
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Canada
Posts: 4,215
Re: Should I get the SZ320mh or SZ520qm?

A maple cap will brighten the tone a bit. All-mahogany guitars tend to be a little darker and midrangey. Maple adds a bit of high end snarl to mahogany.

The reason an SG sounds less bassy is because they're thinner and lighter. Pickups also play into it.
darren wilson is offline  
post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-08-2005, 09:53 AM
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: In the Nightside Eclipse
Posts: 725
Re: Should I get the SZ320mh or SZ520qm?

the solid finished SZ320 sports a maple cap, the SZ320MH WBR on the other hand, sports a mahogany cap. there's not much diff in terms of feel & tone when it comes to the solid finished SZ320 & the 520, unless you bring the WBR finished 320 into the picture- this one's devoid of any paint/ lacquer, you might/ might not like the feel. the WBR has IMO, a warmer midrange, the reason i bought it...
germX is offline  
post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-08-2005, 09:59 AM
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: London, Essex, UK
Posts: 3,619
Re: Should I get the SZ320mh or SZ520qm?

Id go with the SZ320MH for sure. I have always loved those things. But it suits me, and I prefer the looks of it. But you may be different. Both guitars are practically the same, so it will come down to looksmost likely. But I personally would choose the SZ320MH. Its more raw. I would whack in some heavy 11's on it and put in some EMG's, and riff away! But again, thats me. You should consider what you want from it.
the.godfather is offline  
post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-08-2005, 09:13 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Marshall,IL
Posts: 34
Re: Should I get the SZ320mh or SZ520qm?

Quote:
Originally Posted by the.godfather
Id go with the SZ320MH for sure. I have always loved those things. But it suits me, and I prefer the looks of it. But you may be different. Both guitars are practically the same, so it will come down to looksmost likely. But I personally would choose the SZ320MH. Its more raw. I would whack in some heavy 11's on it and put in some EMG's, and riff away! But again, thats me. You should consider what you want from it.
Okay, well I play a wide variety of rock/metal exluding most but not all new school stuff. I'm particular fond of playing classic rock from the early 70's through late 80's.

Which would you consider to be more versatile interms of tone, all mahogany, or with the maple?

Also, I think I read somewhere that the 320mh has more sustain to it, presumably because being one type of wood allows it to resonate more. Any truth to this that anyone is aware of?
bossfrog is offline  
post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-08-2005, 09:24 PM
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: South Jersey
Posts: 159
Re: Should I get the SZ320mh or SZ520qm?

I have the 320, and love it. The neck is extremely easy to play and the sustain is fantastic. Right now it's my favorite guitar and I play it more that my Jem's or Les Paul.

I did upgrade to Seymour Duncan Alnico II Pro pick ups for a more mellow sound, and that put it over the edge for me. I sounds absolutely amazing now.

I would recommend this guitar to anyone, ecspecially for the price.
johliatay is offline  
post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-08-2005, 11:05 PM
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: NB Canada
Posts: 3,467
Re: Should I get the SZ320mh or SZ520qm?

If you prefer the 520 pay the extra $50.00. If not you'll always be saying "I should have bought the 520".


Either way you'll have a nice guitar for the money.


PS: I did a few mods to mine and one that made a big difference was swapping out the togle switch for a real Gibson lever type switch. The original micro switch was effecting the sound.
Rotti is offline  
post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-09-2005, 02:04 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Marshall,IL
Posts: 34
Re: Should I get the SZ320mh or SZ520qm?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rotti
PS: I did a few mods to mine and one that made a big difference was swapping out the togle switch for a real Gibson lever type switch. The original micro switch was effecting the sound.
Thanks for the tip!

I did find some more info and I believe I will stick with the SZ320mh. What other mods have you done, btw?

I also would like some opinions on a good neck pickup to brighten the sound a bit for bluesier stuff. Anyone familiar with the Super 2? Would this be a good match for a heavier bridge pickup, perhaps a Tone Zone or an Air Zone?
bossfrog is offline  
post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-09-2005, 07:46 AM
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: NB Canada
Posts: 3,467
Re: Should I get the SZ320mh or SZ520qm?

SZ320MH Mods:
1) I put a new lower ouput Alnico pickup in the bridge position. (GFS - cheap import pickup but I'm very happy with the sound of it.)
2) I put the old bridge pickup in the neck position. It sounds wicked in there.
3) I changed the pickup rings to cream color ones to match the neck binding.
4) I replaced the toggle switch with a better one.
5) I changed the tone pot to a pushpull that I have setup to coil split the pickups.
6) I replaced the crome dome knobs with classic bell shaped Les Paul style knobs.
7) I polished the frets.

I'm happy with the way it turned out.
Rotti is offline  
post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-11-2005, 01:02 PM
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Tampa Bay
Posts: 10
Re: Should I get the SZ320mh or SZ520qm?

I've got a modded SZ520QM in Wine Red (Blue Berry - go figure), It's got Seymour Duncans in it - a '59 neck and a Pearly Gates bridge. It has gone from my backup guitar to my main axe ahead of my US Fender Strat and US G&L Legacy that I have been playing for 13 years. I LOVE my SZ and I am planning on buying another one - a gold SZ320. As far as which one to get, just play as many as you can and get the one that feels and sounds the best to you. Also, the stock pickups are ok but they are a little thin IMHO and replacing them in mine took the whole guitar to another level. It shines on stage and in the studio and is definitely a great instrument.
frankencat is offline  
Reply

Tags
bridge pickup , bridge position , coil split , dome knobs , epi les paul , fender strat , les paul , les paul standard , mahogany body , mahogany guitars , music store , neck binding , neck pickup , neck position , pickup ring , pickup rings , quilted maple , seymour duncan , seymour duncans , style knobs , toggle switch , tone zone

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Jemsite forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address

IMPORTANT: You will be required to activate your account so please ensure that your email address is correct.

If you do not receive your activation check your spam folder before using the CONTACT US form (at the bottom right of each page).



Email Address:
OR

Log-in










 
Similar Searches

People searched for this, also searched for these:

compare Ibanez 2006 SZ520QM to 2007
sz520qm dimarzio?

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Radius on SZ320MH? wizard333 Tech: Setup, Repairs and Mods 0 06-20-2006 02:14 AM
What could I trade my SZ320MH for? Rotti All Other Guitars (including Prestige) 3 06-13-2005 11:15 AM
rg321mh vs sz320mh davidian All Other Guitars (including Prestige) 25 03-04-2005 03:51 AM
My new SZ320MH - pics Rotti All Other Guitars (including Prestige) 28 01-09-2005 05:17 AM
What I don't like about my SZ320MH Rotti All Other Guitars (including Prestige) 16 10-23-2004 12:53 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome