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Is it worth buying a used, lower end RG and upgrading it? Specifically, I'm talking about the RG5EX1. Is the guitar well built enough to be worth upgrading?

If I were to do it, I'd put an OFR bridge (at least I think the OFR fits the bridge route), change the pickups, and refinish it in a swirl finish. Are the frets and neck decent? Playability is my biggest concern since I'll be essentially changing everything else on the guitar. I already have two humbuckers I'm not using right now, so all I'll have to buy is the bridge and a single coil pickups. I've got all the stuff I need to do the finish, even though it will be my first attempt at a swirl. I'll definitely experiment on some scrap wood first.
 

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If the price is right... maybe.

You really can't turn dogsh!t into diamonds... I mean, just upgrading the pickups and the bridge are really going to still make the guitar play the same.

I've had a few lower end guitars that I've passed on just basically because a pickup swap or a hardware change just isn't really going to make much of a difference.

It really is still going to play the same, and with all of the amps and effects out there these days, you can pretty much make anything sound like anything. It really comes down to how it feels to you.
 

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I would just change pickups. I have a similar guitar (RG350), and my only complain is the pickups. Everything else is good for the price paid: the trem stays in tune pretty well, nice body finish, and the neck is what I love the most. With new pickups, your guitar should sound almost as good as a expensive one (notice I said SOUND, not FEEL). If you want it to feel like a expensive one, you'd probably have to change the neck, but if you ever want to do that I think it's better to get a whole new guitar.

Like I said, just change the pickups and your guitar will come to life. An OFR would be great too, but in my opinion the Edge III is perfect for the price paid.
 

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I agree with Mr. Killer.

I have a PGM301, and an RG370, and the 370 is a fine machine aside from the stock pickups (which honestly are still pretty decent until you start really fine tuning your sound.) The Edge III trem is still great, and the Wizard II neck is fine (while not Prestige quality, it gets the job done...there is definitely $700 worth of difference between the two!)

Honestly, grab up a middle of the road RG, especially if its an older made in Japan model (the serial number will start with an F); you won't be dissapointed! Its neck will be much more playable and will be a better starting point if you're looking for a guitar to mod. Heck, odds are, it will cost the same (maybe $400-500) and someone will have already thrown some Dimarzio's in it.
 

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I agree with Mr. Killer.

I have a PGM301, and an RG370, and the 370 is a fine machine aside from the stock pickups (which honestly are still pretty decent until you start really fine tuning your sound.) The Edge III trem is still great, and the Wizard II neck is fine (while not Prestige quality, it gets the job done...there is definitely $700 worth of difference between the two!)

Honestly, grab up a middle of the road RG, especially if its an older made in Japan model (the serial number will start with an F); you won't be dissapointed! Its neck will be much more playable and will be a better starting point if you're looking for a guitar to mod. Heck, odds are, it will cost the same (maybe $400-500) and someone will have already thrown some Dimarzio's in it.
yep, I agree..look for a used late 80s or early 90s RG550 or 570...in that 400-500 range, should be plenty already upgraded or in need of..it's sweet when you find them original, too..back then they were great right off the rack.
 

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yep, I agree..look for a used late 80s or early 90s RG550 or 570...in that 400-500 range, should be plenty already upgraded or in need of..it's sweet when you find them original, too..back then they were great right off the rack.
I agree. This is a very good idea.
 

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for two reasons yes.

1. If you already own the guitar, for instance your first or 2nd guitar then yes why not.

2. If like me you like the feel and comfort of an Ibanez, but not a huge fan of either the flashy inlays or choice of pickups then yes. Especially on the fixed bridge models. For instance I like Seymour duncan pickups but Ibanez use Dimarzio.
 

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I played a 321mh in a store near where i live and loved its playability and sound.So I found a used one on **** for cheaper than what they were asking.Since buying it I've replaced the pups for some Dimarzio's and have bought some Sperzel's for it.but overall with a couple other things im gonna do to it,Its made a $180 guitar seem like a better investment than buying a higher priced model.Plus i got an awesome deal on the pups so that helped the budget.:smile:

So IMO its definately worth it.:wink:
 

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I say go for it. Doing your own mods is definitely a lot of fun, as well as great practice. Edge 3 is decent for what it's worth. I liked the edge 3 in the RG5 much more than my Lo TRS that was in my MIJ RG470. Change the pickups, sand and refinish the neck and maybe a body refinish and you will have what you want.
 
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