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Ibanez Artcores. What's the general consensus?

Discussion in 'Other Guitar Discussion' started by Believer7713, Oct 14, 2020.

  1. Cerb

    Cerb Anti conformist reformist

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    I've never owned or played a bad Ibanez, from any prize point.

    This is the only artcore Ibby I've owned and it was amazing, especially for the price. IMG_20181021_183558.jpg IMG_20181021_183234.jpg IMG_20181021_183227.jpg IMG_20181021_183218.jpg IMG_20181021_183158.jpg
     
  2. Believer7713

    Believer7713 The Pink Bunny Frankenstein Silver Member

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    I picked it up a couple days ago. Ot plays REALLY nicely and is super clean. So far, the only complaint that I've had has been the tuners. The neck is super nice and surprisingly thin, which I like. The bidy is really comfortable and the finish is pretty much flawless. The finish on this particular one surprised me when I found out the guitar is 15 years old. It was made in 2005 in the Samick plant. I've had several guitars over the years made by Samick and loved every one; so far, this one is no exception.
    A couple hours after I brought it home I started on cleaning it up and polishing it. The pickups had some residue on them that was like cleaning tape glue off of them...as did the trapeze, bridge and tuners. The finish had that "havent been cleaned in a decade" build-up all over it. After wiping it down and seeing what I was in for I got the Maguire's cleaner wax out and went to town. I also removed the pickguard to do the cleaning but decided not to put it back on for now. Then last night, I swapped out the aforementioned tuners. The originals were something like 9:1 (I counted them out) and I had a set of 16:1 that I used. Much better now in that department. I also gave it a fresh set of strings and polished the pickups, trapeze, bridge and new tuners a second time with some Eagle 1 Never Dull. It looks as nice as one hanging on the was at GC that's been pawed on by countless people like me.
    Mine is not nearly as nice as some of the others I've seen pisted here but it is a really nice piece and my start into the hollow body world. Lsat night I was playingbit for my wife to hear and I was impressed with how well the pickups bite through the amp but don't distort the sound. When in the middle pisition the guitar sounds, through the amp, almost exactly as it does acoustically.
    I am still struggling a bit with the neck which has to do with the shorter scale. I've never really gotten on with Gibson scaled guitars but this one is growing on me. It will also teach me to learn to reposition my fingers fir certain cord voicings as I tend to choke out some notes on this guitar that I don't on my others.
    Here are the before and after pics.
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  3. pcampbell

    pcampbell Strat-Talker

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    I can't really say how the necks compare on the AS73 and the AM93, sorry. I haven't compared the official specs. I got the AS73 in 2007, I think. Got the AM93 in 2018. Don't know if the specs would change over that time, and it's been a few years since I traded the AS73 away. I just know I really like the AM93. That's partly a reaction to the smaller body size and even more a reaction to the Super 58s.
     
  4. Largecucumber

    Largecucumber Strat-Talk Member

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    I saw one of those a few years back for a ridiculous price, I believe it was €250 or so and it got me litterally drooling. That is such a beautiful guitar. Needless to say it got away, by the time I managed to convince my SO someone had snatched it. To this day it is haunting my dreams.
     
  5. Largecucumber

    Largecucumber Strat-Talk Member

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    Cerb and OneWatt like this.
  6. tinkertoy

    tinkertoy Strat-O-Master

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    15951680469424505009913477342051-1.jpg
    My '18 as73g (19 and '20s got basswood, nyatoh, and laurel. Mine is maple/mahogany/rosewood)

    Cost me 300 bucks new at a local store.

    The artcore lineup is an exercise in what Ibanez does well.

    The woodwork and build was flawless. The parts? Well, they work ok. But then, what do you expect for such a low price?

    I swapped the hot pickups for a set of hb sized p90s and left well enough alone.

    Overall impression? Sick guitar for the price. I play it as much or more than my #1 strat these days
     
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  7. OneWatt

    OneWatt Strat-Talk Member Silver Member

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    Agreed. To put a fine point to this, the pics you refer to above are indeed of an AF105(NT=natural finish).

    I did swap out the original tuners (for locking Grovers) on mine, but truth be told it wasn't really necessary ... just an indulgence.

    I often make changes to stock pickups, but the originals (marked S58N & S58B for neck and bridge) always sounded perfectly fine as they came. Have never felt the need to change them.

    If you can ever get your hands on one of these, I'd certainly recommend it. Although they're a bit hard to find, they still seem to fetch a merely reasonable price for their quality, tone and playability.

    Happy hunting!
     
  8. Tone Quest

    Tone Quest Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    I had an AS 93, beautiful blue with gold hardware. Looked great, sounds great, but the 335 size body was just to big for me. I ended up trading it for a high quality Epiphone Les Paul. I still play my Strat most of the time though.
     
  9. Andrew Wasson

    Andrew Wasson Senior Stratmaster

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    You just can’t go wrong with an Ibanez. I chose a brand new Ibanez AS100 over a brand new Gibson SG that was similarly priced almost 40 years ago. I’ve still got it and it’s never occurred to me to let it go. It’s an Artist so MIJ and probably 20 years before the Artcore series came out.

    A couple of months ago I found another AS100 from the same year that’s stock except for the tuners. My original has a set of HB sized P90s and the new to me model has the original Super 58’s. Best of both worlds. I’ve been playing my EJ Strat and the Ibanez’s constantly for the last couple of weeks.

    EDIT (pics)

    36EE2741-26C2-40CB-8CBE-DF8CC5F2699E.jpeg
     
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  10. EC Strat

    EC Strat Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    Both of those are super sharp looking! Especially the one on the left. They’re just great value guitars.

    you don’t feel like shilling out 2500k for an ES 335? Just pick up an Artcore and upgrade the hell out of it
     
  11. Believer7713

    Believer7713 The Pink Bunny Frankenstein Silver Member

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    I've gotta say that after getting new tuners on mine I am pretty happy with it. It plays amazingly well and sounds really good...bith acoustically and plugged in. The pickups are surprisingly good too. In the middle position it sounds, plugged in, like it does acoustically.
     
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  12. johnted

    johnted Strat-Talk Member

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  13. johnted

    johnted Strat-Talk Member

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    I was in a band with an excellent guitar teacher who loved his Artcore, it sounded great. I think they're well made and look good.
     
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  14. Funk McNasty

    Funk McNasty Senior Stratmaster

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    I can’t say enough good things about my Artcore’s.. I’ve owned two AS73’s, both of which I very regrettably sold for things I thought I wanted more at the time. Just bought an AM93. Great guitars for the money. Though some of them come with the Classic Elite pickups, which I find to be not super amazing—the ones that come with the Super 58 pickups though? Awesome sounding, PAF style buckers that would honestly be an upgrade in a lot of guitars IMO.

    the finishes on these guitars sometimes have some small visual flaws—stuff that wouldn’t pass QC at higher end facilities—but despite that, the build quality, tuning stability, feel, and playability of the Artcore’s are really hard to beat for the price. I agree they blow the Epiphone semi hollow body’s out of the water for quality, and even hold their own against D’Angelico’s entry level line of similar semi-hollow designs.
     
  15. Dadocaster

    Dadocaster Dr. Stratster

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    I have been drooling over Ibanez for a long time. I have a couple of rock and roll Iby, but the George Benson and Joe Pass models that we kept in the shop back in the day were just totally amazing.

    I sometimes play some of the newer models in the stores but I end up NOT BUYING them for the same reason that I never tried to get a Benson or a Pass: I can't really play things well enough in the styles in which they shine to justify owning one.
     
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  16. John Backlund

    John Backlund Strat-Talk Member Gold Supporting Member

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    I've owned three Artcore Ibanez guitars, I had no complaints about any of them, and will almost certainly have another one of these days, probably another AF75 in a brown or redburst.
     
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