Ibanez 540S
Ibanez 540S

540S, STC-Shaped Guitar from Ibanez in the Roadstar Pro series.

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All user reviews for the Ibanez 540S

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Average Score:4.7( 4.7/5 based on 4 reviews )
 2 reviews50 %
 1 user review25 %
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Hatsubai's review"Ibanez's 22 fret shredder"

Ibanez 540S
Back in 1987, a lot of happening things were occurring. Companies all around the world were making some of the greatest shred guitars you could ever buy. Ibanez came out with a few guitars during this time, and one of the more popular ones was the Ibanez 540S which was part of the Roadstar Pro series at the time. There have been different versions of this, but I'm going by the original one made in 1987. The guitar is made out of an ultra thin mahogany strat style body, a maple neck with a rosewood fretboard, 22 jumbo frets, dot inlays, Edge tremolo, HSS configuration, one volume with a push/pull for coil tapping the bridge and three individual switches to select between each different pickup.


Ibanez did an awesome job with this guitar in terms of ergonomics. The body is super sleek and slim. It's great for those looking for something that's resonant but doesn't weigh a ton. The overall fit and finish on these models is pretty good, but there are a few hit or miss areas, especially around the neck joint. Be sure to inspect them closely in that area. The fretwork also wasn't quite as good as it is on today's Prestige models. They tend to have more of an angle on the fret ends which might cause some high e slippage with certain guitars. They're also not as round as the Prestige models. That said, for the time, they were pretty high quality and could be had at a great price. On top of that, they come with one of the best tremolos in the world -- the original Edge trem.


This is kinda where Ibanez almost always drops the ball. The pickups in these guitars aren't that great, and most people out there would agree with me. They tend to be a bit muddy and lack dynamics. They can work, but I find there are much better pickups out there, especially in the DiMarzio and Duncan line up. The really cool thing is that these have individual on/off switches for each pickup. It's almost like the Tom Anderson switching system, albeit a touch different. It allows you to create nearly every possible sound out of the guitar. On top of that, the volume pot allows you to split the bridge for even further tonal possibilities.


These old school Ibanez S series have some mojo that the newer ones don't seem to have. The fact that most of them are now made over in Korea/Indonesia may have something to do with that; I'm not sure. Either way, I recommend trying to seek out these guitars as they're totally awesome. Just one pickup swap should give you one of the best shredders out there. Now if only these old school models came with 24 frets...

Whybeblue's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)

Ibanez 540S
I bought my 540 Pro Saber in 1988 (I was 65), at the time I was looking for a more versatile than my Fender Deluxe guitar to play a little hard Blues (ZZ TOP, etc ...) and solos with technical plans so I needed a more accurate handle and more powerful microphones that fender. After trying several guitars (ESP Gibson M4, Jackson San Dimas), I turned to the Ibanez was above the rest in the sound level. I bought it about 9000 francs but today such a guitar would be in 2500 euros. It's better quality than the current Ibanez. Another reason that made me choose it is the fact that it was the guitar Joe (Satriani) ...
The guitar is made in the USA rather than made in Japan. Indeed, all the parts were manufactured by the Custom Shop
California Ibanez or the previous opinion. The guitar was designed by Rich Lasner (eg Yamaha), Bill Reim and Mark Wittenberg (Fender future) that really builds the ultimate weapon! Consider this:
- Solid mahogany body with one selected part (dried 7 years)
- Handle Wizard fabulously quick and easy
- Vibrato Floyd "Back stop" (it remains stable as a fixed bridge when not in use) This is great!
- Micro Ibanez USA Custom developed with DI Marzio (actually 2 Single Humbucker Texas and Fred)
- Selection of microphones 3 switch with 1 swtch 3 position twice: this results in 12 positions

On mine the varnish is not cracked heel (just a little line on the varnish ...).
I would put 10 because there are no more guitar of this quality today less than 3000 euros out.


The best handle that is passed under my fingers yet 40 years I play guitar, I have known hundreds of rounds ...
For weight I do not agree with the previous opinion that say that the guitar is lightweight. Personally, I find the body heavier than my fender but lighter than my Gibson Paul Studio.
Access to the treble is incredibly easy.
For sounds and use, I will not say a thing this guitar I use it everywhere, in the studio or on stage, with 12 sounds you can hang all styles and the handle is so much more comfortable than my other guitars ...


<span style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: small;">

</span> <div style="color: #000000; font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 10px; background-image: initial; background-repeat: initial; background-attachment: initial; -webkit-background-clip: initial; -webkit-background-origin: initial; background-color: #ffffff; background-position: initial initial; margin: 8px;"> <span style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: small;">On the clean channel of my Marshall, the guitar is comparable to the fender deluxe, with more power and precision, the sound is warmer. It surpasses the fender for blues and Hendrixienne ride.
Saturated microphones largely shown above the fender, a beautiful saturation can be obtained with both simpler than double. The Humbucker "Fred" a madness of power and a lot of shade, it reminds a bit of a gibson but more defined. Ideal for solo or very large rock.
Di Marzio and Ibanez is designed super microphones that accommodates perfectly with the violin mahogany, unlike JS 1000 was not entitled to the linden tree which gives a lot of sustain notes. Fabulous mics on a Marshall or a fender clean.
Saturated is singing like a PRS and accurate as an ESP: lovely.</span> </div> <span style="font-family: 'Times New Roman'; font-size: small;">



I played on just about any brand (Grech, Gibson, Fender, Danelectro, ESP, Charvel). I sold a lot of guitar. The Pro 540 Saber is the most versatile and most successful, I never would commit the error of the sale, even for 2000 euros, it is practically part of my life. Without it my fingers would be lost ... A skyscraper with strong temperament for guitarists who still minimal technique. The kids will buy the latest fashionable fender or mounted active EMG LTD (it will give them the impression of knowing how to play). The Saber Pro is beautiful, rare and she is mine!

spinko's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)

Ibanez 540S
Designed and developed in the California study office Hoshino USA. Meeting in Japan with US parts (microphones, electronic, etc ...) manufactured from 1988 to 1991. This is the guitar for the first 3 albums of the immense Joe Satriani. She's Photo Album Dreaming.
Compared to the photo, my copy has not a 5-way switch that came in 1991 but 3 toggle switch to cut or open each microphone and the third switch splitter twice in singles. Suffice to say that the palette is great, I counted 12 possible combinations microphones ...

- Mahogany body carved from a single piece end like a saber and superb resonance and sutain worthy of a Les Paul ...
- Floyd Rose bridge with inscription "back stop, power play system"
- Channel Wizard ultrathin, fastest sleeves that I met, I play two times faster on it than with my fender ...
- Blocks rope bridge quality
- 2 single coil and 1 double splitable developed by Di Marzio Ibanez USA (sounds of hell)
- 3 Switch (1 for each micro switch 3 positions with 1 double) for 12 positions!

That I think I've been around the beast ... I'll just added that I bought 9000 francs in 1989 without case at the time or fender US 4700 francs was sold with hard case ... . Anyway, she really wants the money invested. Note though that the patent ultra tight cracks in the heel with time, but nothing bad, it's just aesthetics ...


If Satriani recorded three albums, it's not for nothing. It really is a pro guitar, very upscale.
The handle is really a highway, the fastest of all Ibanez sleeves!
The guitar is fine as a sword so lightweight. For ergonomics is unbeatable, even an average guitarist can play in comfort with this guitar. Even a beginner can progress through the handle with ultra easy to play!
You plug the guitar and clear channel as ultra saturated, it sounds great!
Really a guitar that can do everything from blues to death including of course the master's style Satriani.


There is not a style of music that this guitar can not play. It can go from a fender to a big sound Gibson and of course the typical sound Di Marzio (ultra precise with huge sustain the double).
- On the clean channel, the guitar sounds better than a fender US, clearer, warmer sound almost acoustic! We can play blues, funk (and even jazz using the 3 microphones simultaneously).
- On the overdrive channel sounds good hard blues genre ACDC
- On the overdrive channel, we enter the thick of things stand out beautifully harmonic, serious follies have a potato.
whatever the chosen micro even simple sounds. But of course the humbucker (pro bam) sends the cannonball, notes sing and seem endless, which is rare on a guitar with a Floyd. Quite simply, the guitar longer sustain a Les Paul! Really amazing.
By far my best guitar!


Certainly I have paid dearly for 1500 euros at the time, with inflation it would give 2500 euros today but the guitar has 12 sounds, the equivalent of 3 very good guitars. In addition it has aged well apart varnish that breaks the heel but anecdotal and current on fine guitars very hard varnish. This is guitar pro par excellence, much better than the current 1000 JS is less well finished (basswood body) and more limited in terms of sound with its two-fold: it was not the 12 positions! The Pro 540 saber usa / japan A guitar that can do everything and does it wonderfully: 10/10

spinko's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)

Ibanez 540S