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heads on fire 09/09/2011

Ibanez AS103 : heads on fire's user review

« Best 335-style for under $1500. »
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Made in China
Semi-hollow body - maple top, back, sides, and neck
Rosewood fingerboard
Rosewood knobs!
Rosewood peghead veneer
Gold hardware
Ibanez Super 58 humbuckers
Ibanez tuners with pearloid buttons
Tuneamatic style bridge
Stop tailpiece with fine tuners
2 volume, 2 tone pots
3 way toggle switch
Floating pickguard
Nice (but smelly) Ibanez hardshell case

UTILIZATION

This guitar is a dream to play, and very versatile! The tones are great right from the get go. It gets great sounds even unplugged, and warm, clear, rich tones while plugged in. The responsiveness in the sound is fantastic.

The guitar is a touch on the heavy side, and being a semi-hollow, it can be prone to feedback, but I think it's the best 335-style guitar out there for under $1500. It's easy to get up to all the frets, and the fine tuners are a great bonus for tuning stability.

SOUNDS

Of course, blues and jazz tones abounded in spades, but the real surprise was playing metal and country on it! It even pulled off chugging down-tuned distortion very well (with a small bit of feedback-wrestling on my part), and it utterly shined on chicken pickin'! I played this through a variety of Fender, Mesa, and Line 6 amps, as well as a bunch of pedals, and I was never disappointed with the results.

OVERALL OPINION

I'd love to find another one! I've owned two, and sold both due to finances. If I come into the cash again, I'll buy another one in a heartbeat. Amazing value for the money, and great sounds at any price!

My one gripe, and this is very minor, is the smell of the case. The glue that Ibanez used in the case smells something awful, so be aware of this. I honestly would have preferred the smell of a smoked-on case, and I can't stand the smell of smoke.