Ibanez JEM Forum banner
1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
29 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
hi, its been few years since i bought this guitar and i really like it over my Japanese fender sss strat because of easier to play fretboard and the hum-bucking pups. i play in pop covers band and have to deal with a lot of oldies songs that has clean guitar parts. the problem i have is rg is not giving me enough sustain. and some notes go dead quicker than others (no fret buzz). strat gives me more sustain than the rg but i don't use that anymore live. i really like the tone of the rg i just wish i could get it to sustain more. any advice on how i could fix this problem? first i thought it was the basswood body as some forums say basswood resonate less than other woods (but recently i learnt that Japanese strat bodies were basswood too?) so there has to be another reason for this problem? neck doesn't seem warped to me either. btw i use elixir nano-web light gauge strings. thanks in advance.


(the reason i don't use the strat anymore is its too thinner and soft sounding. any advice what pickups to replace? since i plan to do so in the future)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
88 Posts
lower the pickup height.
If you lower it too much, you lose volume, but it will give lots of sustain.
The trick is to find the "sweet spot" between volume and sustain.
For me, i have the bridge high, middle low, and the neck a bit higher than the fret board.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
tried changing pup height. now i have to play for a few days to check out and adjust more till i get it right. most problem causing area is d fret on the 3rd string(5th fret) and octave high on the same string 19th fret. 19th fret goes dead as soon as i play it. there some other frets doing the same thing but in a lesser scale. (forgive my english) btw thanks for replying
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
i wonder if its a problem with frets, but i should hear fret buzz if that's the case(at least on some other fret/frets). right?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
88 Posts
do open notes lack sustain??
If so, then there's either a saddle problem, or a nut problem, or even bigger ones potentially.
If not, then maybe youre not used to the radius of the ibby's fretboard.
OR maybe it's not any of that. Maybe just bad strings, in which case a simple string change will solve the problem.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
do open notes lack sustain??
If so, then there's either a saddle problem, or a nut problem, or even bigger ones potentially.
If not, then maybe youre not used to the radius of the ibby's fretboard.
OR maybe it's not any of that. Maybe just bad strings, in which case a simple string change will solve the problem.
open strings ring as they should there's no problem playing chords and stuff. just that a few notes here and there go dead quicker than others. 19th fret 3rd string goes dead in less than half a second. that's the worst one. i change strings once in 2 weeks. and i use coated strings. i used to play daddario xl110s. changed them once a week. the problem was there with those too. so there cant be any problem with strings. i think the radius is right since it has improved my playing a lot overtime and it feels less painful to play(when i was playing the strat live i used to get lot of elbow/wrist pain. if that has anything to do with radius?)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
88 Posts
open strings ring as they should there's no problem playing chords and stuff. just that a few notes here and there go dead quicker than others. 19th fret 3rd string goes dead in less than half a second. that's the worst one. i change strings once in 2 weeks. and i use coated strings. i used to play daddario xl110s. changed them once a week. the problem was there with those too. so there cant be any problem with strings. i think the radius is right since it has improved my playing a lot overtime and it feels less painful to play(when i was playing the strat live i used to get lot of elbow/wrist pain. if that has anything to do with radius?)
the radius is the curve on the fretboard. High radius = flatter fretboard, and vice versa.
i dont think there's anything with the sustain block, if it were, they sustain of all notes would be crap, open or fretted.
Either there's a fret problem, or a problem with the saddle.

About your strat, the wrist pain would be due to bad finishing on the bridge, and elbow pain, probably because it might've hit the body while you were playing chords. Or else, plain fatigue.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
the radius is the curve on the fretboard. High radius = flatter fretboard, and vice versa.
i dont think there's anything with the sustain block, if it were, they sustain of all notes would be crap, open or fretted.
Either there's a fret problem, or a problem with the saddle.

About your strat, the wrist pain would be due to bad finishing on the bridge, and elbow pain, probably because it might've hit the body while you were playing chords. Or else, plain fatigue.
thanks for the reply :) what pickups should i use if im to upgrade the strat. with my current live setup(guitar - rp 1000 - roland jc 160) it sounds thin since the rp is programmed to work with the ibanez. currently im upgrading a yamaha pacifica with dimarzio stacked single coil on the bridge - texas special for the middle and seymour duncan pearly gates on the bridge. i havent recieved that yet from the luthier so im yet to check how that turns out
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,383 Posts
Wood is a funny thing. I have three guitars and on two of them have what I refer to as 'low spots' where the notes simply either will not sustain, or they will kind of fade into the harmonic of the note after a couple of seconds.

Just certain spots though, everything else is great.

It's not the frets, not the saddles or blocks (I was a tech for a long time so I know what's what here. :) ). It's actually the wood itself. Wood, no matter what kind, will resonate and sometimes it resonates in a way that it will kill sustain, or as in the case of one of my guitars, cause the string to respond in a 'funny' way, like fading into the octave (well, it doesn't replace the root harmonic, it's hard to describe. It's not really the octave, it just thins out a bit, even clean or un-amplified so it's not a feedback harmonic)

If everything is 'sound' then it's simply a characteristic of the guitar and there isn't a whole lot you can do about it besides replace the body or neck and hope it changes. I've run into a lot of guitars that do this back when I was doing tech work and it's really not too big a deal.

It's something you work with, or around, or you simply try to find another guitar that you like that doesn't have this characteristic.

For sure check everything before coming to the conclusion that it's simply the wood, but if everything else checks out then you're kind of stuck with it.

Just as an aside; I had an RG520 from 1990 (mahogany body, quilted top) and every note sustained for a day or two, EXCEPT, the D on the third string (7th fret). I use standard .009 gauge strings. If I popped a set of .010's or even .008's (can you say YUCK?) I'd still have the same problem. Just something about the way the wood and the string vibrated together would kill that one note, in just that position, fairly quickly. Again, I was a tech, so I know everything else was as it should be. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
thanks micjustmic. that was really helpful. i wouldn't want to replace anything because its not a huge problem except the D on the 3rd string 19th fret. which go totally dead almost as its played. :) i played a set of .008s one time and 1 time only. 1st string didn't even last 2 days and i hated the thin sound that came out. lol. i wish you had the rg520 so you can check if the D on the 19th fret does the same. my 7th fret D does the same as your guitar but to a lesser extent i guess. its the 19th fret D that kills the note instantly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
and i think i saw a rg2550z you tube vid, the guy demoing it said the guitar has very low sustain compared to other basswood rgs. i can imagine what that would do to a guitar with dead spots. i guess im fortunate the dead spot on mine is on a fret that i don't use much
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,383 Posts
If you vibrato the hell out of those notes, can you get some sustain?


At about 2:11 Steve plays a note and you hear it starting to die on him, but since he's 'shaking' the hell out of it it lasts a bit longer.

Every other note that he sustains you can hear that it would go on 'forever' if he let it, but that one he really had to work to keep it going even for that short duration.

And I know this isn't live, but he mimes what he recorded very well, so it's pretty indicative of how he'd have played it while recording (plus, you can hear how hard he vibrato-ed that string on that note even without the visual)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
If you vibrato the hell out of those notes, can you get some sustain?


At about 2:11 Steve plays a note and you hear it starting to die on him, but since he's 'shaking' the hell out of it it lasts a bit longer.

Every other note that he sustains you can hear that it would go on 'forever' if he let it, but that one he really had to work to keep it going even for that short duration.

And I know this isn't live, but he mimes what he recorded very well, so it's pretty indicative of how he'd have played it while recording (plus, you can hear how hard he vibrato-ed that string on that note even without the visual)
you're absolutely right! its possible to sustain the not with vibrato though it does sound a bit different than the picked note. problem is this technique sounds good only with distortion.
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top