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Mertay
post Jan 19 2019, 01:50 PM
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Saw the link on a forum, connected to ibanezrules.com but couldn't find the written news yet. As far as I understand these will only apply to indo made guitars(?).


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Todd Simpson
post Jan 19 2019, 07:55 PM
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Get ready for the used market to heat up again smile.gif There are quite a few Ibby fans that are not gonna want new wood just because they have become fans of old woods. The new woods could very well sound better, and you will still see folks bagging on it in various forums. The mahogany body will be missed to be sure. The used market for all the pre 2010 MIJ Ibbys is gonna get busy imho once this news gets around. 2010 is sort of the cut off date for serious cork sniffing Ibby Fiends. Prices had hit $1,000 U.S. for old mij rg guitars but got cut in half with the reissue of the rg5xx line. I"m guessing the trend will head north again now that woods are changing. But who knows, maybe folks will love the change. Time will tell smile.gif
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QUOTE (Mertay @ Jan 19 2019, 08:50 AM) *


Saw the link on a forum, connected to ibanezrules.com but couldn't find the written news yet. As far as I understand these will only apply to indo made guitars(?).
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Mertay
post Jan 20 2019, 06:28 PM
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I don't feel good about this change.

There are some great guitars built in non-first world countrys offering a quality for those who can't afford, this on the other hand is something else and feels wrong.


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Adam M
post Jan 20 2019, 09:58 PM
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I seriously hope this will only concern Indo guitars. I'm hoping to get a Japanese RG this year. Hopefully, the one at GC won't get sold.

But yeah, the news overall sounds sad.


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AK Rich
post Jan 21 2019, 06:38 PM
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For the most part, these woods seem like a decent substitute from what I have read so far. As to how they affect tone? Time will tell I guess but some of these materials, if not all of them, are already used in instrument building to some extent.

https://www.wood-database.com/dark-red-meranti/
https://www.wood-database.com/nyatoh/
https://www.wood-database.com/okoume/
https://www.wood-database.com/jatoba/
https://www.wood-database.com/macassar-ebony/

https://www.wood-database.com/brazilian-rosewood/
https://www.wood-database.com/honduran-mahogany/
https://www.wood-database.com/poplar/
https://www.wood-database.com/radiata-pine/

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Todd Simpson
post Jan 22 2019, 06:28 AM
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I agree. I really think this is going to heat up the used market yet again to crazy levels, as mentioned. People are going to want the woods they like. The used market for Golden Era Ibbys (Roughly the ten years from 1987 to 1997) is about to go NUTS.
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QUOTE (Mertay @ Jan 20 2019, 01:28 PM) *
I don't feel good about this change.

There are some great guitars built in non-first world countrys offering a quality for those who can't afford, this on the other hand is something else and feels wrong.


Sadly NO. This will concern ALL guitars from Ibanez. New rules about which woods can be used/exported are causing this. Make sure you check which woods are being used on the guitar you are planning to buy. You may end up having to find a used RG.

QUOTE (Adam M @ Jan 20 2019, 04:58 PM) *
I seriously hope this will only concern Indo guitars. I'm hoping to get a Japanese RG this year. Hopefully, the one at GC won't get sold.

But yeah, the news overall sounds sad.


Very true!!! smile.gif But we are mostly talking about IBBY builds here, and Ibby people can be just as cork sniffy as Gibson/Fender people if not worse.
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Adam M
post Jan 23 2019, 10:21 PM
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QUOTE (Todd Simpson @ Jan 22 2019, 06:28 AM) *
Sadly NO. This will concern ALL guitars from Ibanez. New rules about which woods can be used/exported are causing this. Make sure you check which woods are being used on the guitar you are planning to buy. You may end up having to find a used RG.

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I was thinking the same thing as I read your post. I may end up having an used RG but it won't make it any worse. The prices may go up, though but there's always a chance the seller doesn't read Ibanez news. wink.gif If that one at GC doesn't get sold, then it will be just as nice!


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Caelumamittendum
post Jan 23 2019, 10:47 PM
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I think it's hard to be sure about this wood debate. Would you be able to recognize alder or basswood in a blind test? Would you be truly be able to tell which one you like the best?

I don't know of course, but what I have found through owning a lot of $/€200-400 guitars and then finally taking a plunge for the RG3570 and later RG752MFS-VFD is that there IS a difference somewhere. This guitars that retailed at around $2000 feels better, sounds better and so on, and I guess they rightly should. For me it always felt like the difference of quality (maybe of sound) was somewhere else than the body. Same brand of strings I had used on other guitars sounded better when recorded suddenly. But again, would I be able to tell the difference if I was blind tested? I don't know. Probably not...

And not only that, but a cheap guitar can be mixed fantastically and an expensive one horribly. Dial in a good tone with a cheap guitar and you're likely gonna sound better than a horrible tone on an expensive guitar. Of course blind tested with the same tone is a different thing.

Here's a video on this btw:



I THINK I can hear a difference, but how much it would really matter in the end, someone with more knowledge can probably say. Can the differences be mixed out? i.e. add 5% more bass to adjust for the difference.

On a similar note, a cheap mic... doesn't sound THAT bad to me:



This post has been edited by Caelumamittendum: Jan 23 2019, 10:49 PM


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Adam M
post Jan 23 2019, 11:10 PM
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My guitars have nato (supposedly, it has properties similar to mahogany) body and they sound great but they were much cheaper than a RGs are. I probably wouldn't hear a difference. Maybe it's a good idea to wait and look for a comparison - I'm sure die hard Ibby fans will make one. I imagine a good luthier can make a great instrument from average quality wood, let's hope it will be the case.

And a little off-topic, my friend bought an Epiphone (one of the cheapest) as his first axe and he was close to quitting it just because the guitar sounds bad and feels bad. I tried it and it was set up horribly! Now he's looking for some Jackson in low-middle price range. I always thought the myths about badly made guitars are exaggerated more or less.


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Mertay
post Jan 23 2019, 11:12 PM
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QUOTE (Caelumamittendum @ Jan 23 2019, 09:47 PM) *
...


I think rather the difference, its about how much it influences/characterizes the guitars sound.

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Todd Simpson
post Jan 24 2019, 07:42 AM
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Personally, I've always found wood to be a pinch over rated. I've been happy with some cheap woods in the past. I was more thinking that folks just can get picky on their woods just because folks can sometimes be picky smile.gif Due to what they are used to or what they've used before. Not that it's any better or worse per se.

QUOTE (Caelumamittendum @ Jan 23 2019, 05:47 PM) *
I think it's hard to be sure about this wood debate. Would you be able to recognize alder or basswood in a blind test? Would you be truly be able to tell which one you like the best?


The amount of difference, especially at high gain, can be very subtle, at best. Especially when listening to a guitar in a full mix. But still, I do see it driving up the prices in the used market again.
QUOTE (Mertay @ Jan 23 2019, 06:12 PM) *
I think rather the difference, its about how much it influences/characterizes the guitars sound.


Now that is for sure smile.gif Cheap guitars can certainly be off putting, especially for folks that are just learning to play. Then having a bad setup can make it even worse. On top of a bad instrument, a bad setup can make it a bad experience and turn folks off entirely in some cases.
I"d suggest your friend look to used instruments one class up rather than new instruments one class down, assuming he has access to ebay smile.gif

Todd
QUOTE (Adam M @ Jan 23 2019, 06:10 PM) *
My guitars have nato (supposedly, it has properties similar to mahogany) body and they sound great but they were much cheaper than a RGs are. I probably wouldn't hear a difference. Maybe it's a good idea to wait and look for a comparison - I'm sure die hard Ibby fans will make one. I imagine a good luthier can make a great instrument from average quality wood, let's hope it will be the case.

And a little off-topic, my friend bought an Epiphone (one of the cheapest) as his first axe and he was close to quitting it just because the guitar sounds bad and feels bad. I tried it and it was set up horribly! Now he's looking for some Jackson in low-middle price range. I always thought the myths about badly made guitars are exaggerated more or less.
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Mertay
post Jan 24 2019, 12:40 PM
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I recommend going to a store, try the cheapest PRS SE (indo made) vs mid priced (china or Korea can't remember). They have the same PU's but sound difference is huge on clean tone, the better models highs are rounded to be sweeter and overall fuller tone.

Same with expensive epi's using Gibson PU vs a Gibson LP. The Epi will sound nice but the Gibson will bring the tones you'll remember from various albums.

Final example, I'm a tonezone user and my ibby is very heavy compared to others (due to the thick maple cap.). Being played the PU on various guitars over the years, never really felt a similar tonecause the weight of the guitar makes it almost too fat sounding.

So not saying it won't make a difference or simply sound bad, but the influence (on how the string will vibrate) is real.


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klasaine
post Jan 24 2019, 03:15 PM
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As Mertay just mentions, wood 'can' have a HUGE determination on the sound of a solid body. Even one that has a ton of hardware on it (modern trem bridge, locking nut or tuners), a thick poly finish and employs high gain humbuckers. It's all in how the the wood is selected and how it's cut. Not every part of the tree or the log has the same or the best density for a guitar (or any musical instrument). All rosewood is not equal. Etc.
Even shape, which I was skeptical about, influences solid body tone. I have an alder Jazz Master body that is loaded with Telecaster guts (pkups/hrdwr/wiring) and with a Tele neck on it. Everything about it is Tele except the shape. It doesn't sound (or play) like a Telecaster.

https://www.guitarplayer.com/gear/tonewood-...about-tonewoods
https://www.soundunlimited.co.uk/blogs/arti...itar_tone_woods


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Gabriel Leopardi
post Jan 24 2019, 03:48 PM
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I'm in love with this one, but if I'm not wrong it's around 3000 usd... I wonder why it's more expensive than similar models. I didn't research too much.




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Caelumamittendum
post Jan 24 2019, 03:54 PM
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Oh, I agree it can make a difference by the way, but personally I don't think I would be able to differentiate between the quality in a blind sound test. Then again I'm not an expert on sound at all.

Also as I said or asked, if one wood type sounds darker and another brighter, would it be possible to equal out with EQ?

QUOTE (Gabriel Leopardi @ Jan 24 2019, 03:48 PM) *
I'm in love with this one, but if I'm not wrong it's around 3000 usd... I wonder why it's more expensive than similar models. I didn't research too much.




Did some searching and it seems to be the Ibanez AZ2402K model? Yeah, I think that's around 3000 USD.


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klasaine
post Jan 24 2019, 04:17 PM
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QUOTE (Caelumamittendum @ Jan 24 2019, 07:54 AM) *
Also as I said or asked, if one wood type sounds darker and another brighter, would it be possible to equal out with EQ?


Sort of.
You can EQ the final sound but you can't EQ how the resonance and response of the 'wood' translates to the string vibration and through the pickups. It's like putting a general EQ over a finished mono track that was EQ'd badly during the recording and mixing stage. You can't make it great. You might be able to improve it, but it's relative.

Resonance and vibration of wood will also have an affect on tuning and the feel of the instrument. Have you ever owned an instrument that just doesn't feel or sound 'right' no matter what pkups or strings are on it and how good of a set-up you do? There are some 'dogs' out there. Gibson and Gretsch are notorious (throughout their history) for producing some absolutely horrible sounding and playing axes.
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Gabriel Leopardi
post Jan 24 2019, 04:23 PM
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QUOTE (Caelumamittendum @ Jan 24 2019, 11:54 AM) *
Did some searching and it seems to be the Ibanez AZ2402K model? Yeah, I think that's around 3000 USD.



Yes, that's the model.


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Caelumamittendum
post Jan 24 2019, 04:30 PM
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QUOTE (klasaine @ Jan 24 2019, 04:17 PM) *
Sort of.
You can EQ the final sound but you can't EQ how the resonance and response of the 'wood' translates to the string vibration and through the pickups. It's like putting a general EQ over a finished mono track that was EQ'd badly during the recording and mixing stage. You can't make it great. You might be able to improve it, but it's relative.

Resonance and vibration of wood will also have an affect on tuning and the feel of the instrument. Have you ever owned an instrument that just doesn't feel or sound 'right' no matter what pkups or strings are on it and how good of a set-up you do? There are some 'dogs' out there. Gibson and Gretsch are notorious (throughout their history) for producing some absolutely horrible sounding and playing axes.


Yep, owned several "bad" (and some okay) 200-400 dollar guitars. As said my two $2000 (retail) Ibanez guitars sound far superior. But it's in every aspect of course, not just the body. It seemed to me that my RG3570Z had better tone even with very old strings than my cheap guitars had with relatively new strings, if that makes sense.

Curious then, and just from curiosity, no agenda here, two $2000 guitars with different wood types. How do you determine what sounds best though? Clarity? Well rounded ness? Some people might like a boomier sound and some a more trebly one. Of course in terms of a mix having a good starting point/sound is better than a bad one. Then again if a guitar player doesn't like the guitar he is playing on for various reasons, maybe his playing suffers on a "good tone" guitar.... but maybe the neck is bad. I don't know. I'm just thinking up random scenarios here as I got curious. It's an interesting topic, and I don't think it's necessarily as black and white as saying "This is good, that is bad". Not saying that you are saying that. But in some way maybe the difference becomes a subjective thing rather than objective - and that can be just as important in situations! I.e. horses for courses, but we can't have a different guitar with different wood for every situation smile.gif


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klasaine
post Jan 24 2019, 06:40 PM
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'Good' is of course subjective when you're dealing with high quality instruments. No best, just different. That being said, a badly chosen and/or badly cut piece of wood will probably never sound or feel good to any player. The example of your $2000 RG illustrates this perfectly. You mention that even with old and dead strings, it still sounds good. That's the mark of a great instrument. *It probably still holds it's tuning with old strings as well.

Different types of music require different timbres. A trad classical guitarist absolutely wants a German Spruce top - fast, clear and articulate. Cedar - warmer/rounder tone but with a fast response. Great for finger stylists that play in open tunings.

I prefer a slightly darker tone (on all my instruments) so I generally go for rosewood fret boards, swamp ash bodies, alnico pkups, nickel (and some brass) hardware and nickel strings. All of these materials lean towards the less bright end of the spectrum. Having said that, one of my fave Teles has a slab maple board (one piece of maple, no separate fret board) and it's not particularly 'bright' sounding. And never ever locking tuners - they kill the resonance in the neck. Yes, I can tell by both sound and feel.

Then you have construction differences (and philosophies) such as a Gibson headstock v. Fender headstock and strings through the body or attached to bridge on the top. That all influences how the strings interact with the body and the pickups. Hardware alloy has a huge impact on tone. Trad nickel = less sustain and a little warmer than than stainless steel. Brass = more sustain and maybe too warm and dark for some applications or tastes. *Using the venerable Telecaster again as an example: there was a period when Fender used a magnetized bridge plate on teles ... and they sound and react differently. That magnetized bridge interacts differently with the pkups and the strings. There are repro manufacturers that offer magnetized and un-magnetized tele bridges. Bone nut v. synthetic. I could go on forever with this.

Tuning is a big deal. If you have a relatively modern axe that won't hold tune, even with newer strings and a quality setup - there's something wrong with it. It can be bad hardware and/or bad wood. The hardware you 'may' be able to figure out and fix but if it's poorly chosen and cut wood, there's nothing you can do.

There are so many variables. It comes down to "do you like the way it plays and sounds".
So again, it's the individual player and their needs that determine whether any of this is a good thing or a bad thing.
*Your pick thickness, material and picking technique will have more influence over your tone than any piece of hardware and most wood choices. So there's that wink.gif

Another big variable is the skill and experience level of the player. I won't say much about this other than that a player is responsible for pulling the best out of their instrument. Historically, Martin steel guitars, especially the traditional models, are notorious for being 'difficult to play'. It's true. Their standard high end line of 0018, D-28, D-35 and D-45s fight you, bite back and are difficult to make sound good ... until you figure out how to play them. I love my D-35. Best instrument I've ever owned but she won't sing for everyone.

As we like to say here in the States ... "YMMV".

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Caelumamittendum
post Jan 24 2019, 07:02 PM
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QUOTE (klasaine @ Jan 24 2019, 06:40 PM) *
'Good' is of course subjective when you're dealing with high quality instruments. No best, just different. That being said, a badly chosen and/or badly cut piece of wood will probably never sound or feel good to any player. The example of your $2000 RG illustrates this perfectly. You mention that even with old and dead strings, it still sounds good. That's the mark of a great instrument. *It probably still holds it's tuning with old strings as well.

Different types of music require different timbres. A trad classical guitarist absolutely wants a German Spruce top - fast, clear and articulate. Cedar - warmer/rounder tone but with a fast response. Great for finger stylists that play in open tunings.

I prefer a slightly darker tone (on all my instruments) so I generally go for rosewood fret boards, swamp ash bodies, alnico pkups, nickel (and some brass) hardware and nickel strings. All of these materials lean towards the less bright end of the spectrum. Having said that, one of my fave Teles has a slab maple board (one piece of maple, no separate fret board) and it's not particularly 'bright' sounding. And never ever locking tuners - they kill the resonance in the neck. Yes, I can tell by both sound and feel.

Then you have construction differences (and philosophies) such as a Gibson headstock v. Fender headstock and strings through the body or attached to bridge on the top. That all influences how the strings interact with the body and the pickups. Hardware alloy has a huge impact on tone. Trad nickel = less sustain and a little warmer than than stainless steel. Brass = more sustain and maybe too warm and dark for some applications or tastes. *Using the venerable Telecaster again as an example: there was a period when Fender used a magnetized bridge plate on teles ... and they sound and react differently. That magnetized bridge interacts differently with the pkups and the strings. There are repro manufacturers that offer magnetized and un-magnetized tele bridges. Bone nut v. synthetic. I could go on forever with this.

Tuning is a big deal. If you have a relatively modern axe that won't hold tune, even with newer strings and a quality setup - there's something wrong with it. It can be bad hardware and/or bad wood. The hardware you 'may' be able to figure out and fix but if it's poorly chosen and cut wood, there's nothing you can do.

There are so many variables. It comes down to "do you like the way it plays and sounds".
So again, it's the individual player and their needs that determine whether any of this is a good thing or a bad thing.
*Your pick thickness, material and picking technique will have more influence over your tone than any piece of hardware and most wood choices. So there's that wink.gif

Another big variable is the skill and experience level of the player. I won't say much about this other than that a player is responsible for pulling the best out of their instrument. Historically, Martin steel guitars, especially the traditional models, are notorious for being 'difficult to play'. It's true. Their standard high end line of 0018, D-28, D-35 and D-45s fight you, bite back and are difficult to make sound good ... until you figure out how to play them. I love my D-35. Best instrument I've ever owned but she won't sing for everyone.

As we like to say here in the States ... "YMMV".


Completely agree on all that. Well, the points that I can agree with!

I know this is going a bit off topic, but it happens with many things, I suppose. I hear people say they can't get a good tone out of one piece of gear (pedal or plugin) yet someone else does very well. Sometimes a bit of patience and setup goes a long way smile.gif I always struggled with Guitar Rig and ended up getting rather annoyed with it, while I have heard great results with it. BIAS fx was good for me, but others struggled with it. But yeah, a lot of things are subjective. I was recording with a guitar player at one point who wanted an ocean of reverb and delay even in heavy distorted rhythm parts, while also wanting/having a very bass heavy sound, that almost blended in with the bass in some ways. I realized at that point or at least after a while that we were too far apart to work together on the same music project. I had to try and mix his recording into something useful, but it was impossible for me at least. Then you try and explain some basic "rules" that generally make things sound better and clearer, but he wanted that specific sound. Fair enough of course.


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