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Commentary - JEM Anniversary Models

Purple Violet Art Font Magenta

In a perfect world, I would include the comments in the Guitar Gallery. The entire gallery would load in a few tenths of a second as well. We would have clear video of some of us playing these works of art also. Something to look forward to, but for now I've put the comments for each JEM and Universe guitar on this separate page.

Jemsite has listed commentary for each JEM and Universe guitar. Also featured are second opions from friends of Jemsite. To see how everyone ranks their favorites go to the "Visitor Guitar Ranking" page. If you submit a full suite of collector comments they will be added if suitable.

Last update: 4/24/2000 updated commentary by Jemsite.com

JEM Anniversary Models


The #1 JEM/Universe guitar period. Click here to read the commentary from the Hits & Miss pages.

Second Opinion

  • Great idea, great job on the guitar, I just wish Ibanez could have restrained themselves at 500 and not made 850. - by Larry Larsen
  • Probably one of the most beautiful guitars ever made. Engraved head and pickguard are a cool touch, but where are the scalloped frets? - by Dave Weiner
  • At #1 is, wait for it, wait for it ... JEM10 It had to be. Ebony fingerboard, engraved aluminum plates. Full Abalone inlay, all access neck, CHROME evolution pickups. This is the ultimate guitar. If this guitar was a Star Wars toy it would be "The Ibanez JEM in Jedi Knight Outfit" Its the only JEM you can truly be sure of destroying the Death Star with. - by Jono Dale
  • Looks great with its silver-on-black look. Plays like a dream. Good counterpart to the new UV777BK. - by Kyle Clark
  • Excellent guitar and still very available - my only question is why not 777 again? - by Worth Davis
  • Ibanez pulled out all of the stops on this "ULTIMATE" JEM. Do I really need to elaborate further? - by Larry Menshouse
  • classy, subtle, and flashy. All the aesthetic trimmings and a cool case. I wish I owned one - by Mike Haug

JEM 90

The Hoshino 90th Anniversary Model. Announced with much fanfare and a shockingly high price... more expensive than the might JEM10 in fact (case was extra with the 90). I had my doubts about the overall purpose of this model but thankfully it does deliver. Make no misake... the gaudy, flaunty JEM777s we grew up with are dead. If the BSB stuck a fork in them the 90 was truly a beating to the dead horse! What can you do... 11 years later the JEM90 represents the times and is a stunning instrument. It's plaster like finish is stunning and the coloring is very impressive. Aluminum pickguard and inlayed 24th fret is a nice, classy touch. Pictures do not do this guitar justice. Ibanez did not really place any production limits on this guitar and all those ordered by dealers before 2/28/98 were fulfilled. Sadly many dealers took this as an "opportunity" to sell collectable guitars but it has backfired. Some still exist and at prices much cheaper than many of us pre-ordered them for. Feast or famine so get yours now (5/99). Read my hands-on-report for my "player" perspective of this guitar. This model loses some of it's appeal in the shorterm with the copycat and affordable JEM7DBK being released in '99. Perhaps in 10 years the JEM90 will be a classic. Time will tell.

  • What's mainly the cool thing about this guitar is that the appearance is not really a flashy or a traditional color, it's just totally different than anything else. The 7dbk proves that this could be done more affordably. - by Mike Haug

JEM2KDNA: Multicolor DNA Swirl

We all knew something was brewing. After celebrating Hoshino's 90th, you just knew Ibanez couldn't pass on the chance to exploit the 2K phenonemon. Ibanez could not resist, they were going to claim their stake in the lucrative collector's market. The only surprise was that most of us were expecting (and hoping for) a UV10 (10th Anniversary Model). As rumors were confirmed and the NAMM announcement occurred the 2K multicolor wasn't a 7-string... it was instead a JEM. Surprise #2: The sticker price of only $2K MORE than the mighty JEM10. I don''t know much about global economics but I do know when they have you under their thumb. A $2K price increase is some serious inflation don't you think?

Since these guitars haven't shipped yet this commentary will be cut short and subject to change. The DNA is a cool axe, nice concept and sure to be a work of art. The good news is that Ibanez is said to be sticking to the announced limited production of 250 pieces. This contrasts with the outrageously greedy overproduction of past "collectables" such as the JEM10, JEM90 and JS10 to name a few. It is about time Ibanez has maintained some self control. I will forever be annoyed at the lack of self control (of free money) when Ibanez pulls a stunt like announcing a limited production of 100, then 210, then 500 guitars to be mill out 852 when all is finished (that is a reference to the JEM10).

The JEM2KDNA features a return of the multicolor swirl, done by Darren/ATD. It has a intricate fretboard inlays featuring a blood vessicle, premium components and custom shop construction. For sure, this is above and beyond your average JEM. As these models are constructed it will be more appropriate to comment on them. These guitars offer unlimited potential and promise, but again, at a steep cost. The entire run sold out to dealers & Ibanez reps so demand for these, as expected, was very strong. Their arrival of the DNAs this spring 2000 will be quite an event that we all anticipate. I look forward to seeing the actual, final product. Bottom line, if you can get by the outrageous cost, you'll want to own this one.
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