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Very impressed with the new AR320 & AR325...
Tracy Dae
#1 Posted : 10/6/2012 1:50:16 PM
Tracy Dae


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I had a chance yesterday to stop in at my nearest GC and found that they have an AR320 and an AR325 on the wall. I spent the next couple hours or so trying them out and I must say that I am very impressed. These are really nice guitars. I mean really nice guitars. They are not the thicker/heavier AR bodies of the 70’s and 80’s, they are the thinner/lighter AR bodies of the 90’s, which I actually prefer. The fit & finish is better than the 90’s models. The tone is on par with the 70’s & 80’s models, though not exactly the same. They do sound great. I like what I hear when I play them. If I had a job, both would have gone home with both me.

The mind is like a parachute...
...It only works when its open.
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Dante on 10/8/2012(UTC)
Speyfly
#2 Posted : 10/6/2012 11:55:06 PM
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Tracy, you're making it very hard for me to wait until November for the 420 but I really enjoyed the read.

Thx...
CantankerousCarl
#3 Posted : 10/12/2012 1:11:06 AM
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After living with my 325 for a few weeks now, I remain impressed. It feels like a much more expensive instrument.

Aside from my three 80s Roadstars (all with OE Super 58s) I am a PRS guy - this guitar definitely fills a unique niche in my "wooden army" ;) It's the mellowest, quietest guitar I have tone-wise, but it's also one of the more versatile. Very comfy to play standing, light and well-balanced.

It's a real time-sink playing with all of the tri-sound combinations. The differences are quite subtle in some of the "both pickups" positions, and I find myself playing passages over and over again with various combinations of the mini toggles.

I may have to look at the 420 when it comes out...
1978 MC 300 DS
1982 ST 90
1982 AR 100 CS
1983 RS 1000 CS (x 2)
1984 RS 1300
1986 RB 650
2008 AJD91
Tracy Dae
#6 Posted : 10/19/2012 7:28:26 PM
Tracy Dae


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I'm on my way to GC to play those again if they are still there. I really want them.



The mind is like a parachute...
...It only works when its open.
Tracy Dae
#7 Posted : 10/27/2012 7:10:41 AM
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Went back to GC again today to play that AR320. I am bonding with that guitar and that's a problem - because I still don't have a job. BooHoo


The mind is like a parachute...
...It only works when its open.
Speyfly
#8 Posted : 10/27/2012 11:10:32 PM
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Tracy Dae;499693 wrote:
Went back to GC again today to play that AR320. I am bonding with that guitar and that's a problem - because I still don't have a job. BooHoo




I've deliberately stayed away from my local GC for the same reason. I become weak and worthless when I fall in love, my wife does not understand...

Thx Tracy
Tracy Dae
#9 Posted : 10/29/2012 7:32:33 PM
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Speyfly;499702 wrote:
I've deliberately stayed away from my local GC for the same reason.


I can't stay away. I really like playing that guitar and I want to buy it.
The mind is like a parachute...
...It only works when its open.
ramalhais
#10 Posted : 10/29/2012 8:22:38 PM
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Tracy Dae;499756 wrote:
Speyfly;499702 wrote:
I've deliberately stayed away from my local GC for the same reason.


I can't stay away. I really like playing that guitar and I want to buy it.


Wait for the AR420.. hopefuly you'll find a job by then ;)
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Ibanez AR2000 VV Prestige Japan 2002 (F02)
Ibanez AR2000 VV Prestige Japan 1998 (F98)
jwhit007
#4 Posted : 10/29/2012 11:23:58 PM

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I just got a 325 a few days ago and am very impressed.
CantankerousCarl;499225 wrote:
After living with my 325 for a few weeks now, I remain impressed. It feels like a much more expensive instrument.

I believe my "honeymoon phase" will be lasting a very, very long time, as I can find no faults...this should be a much more expensive guitar.
Good luck with finding a job, I'm grateful everyday for mine(even though it's a dead-end variety.)
Speyfly
#15 Posted : 10/30/2012 1:40:51 AM
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ramalhais;499763 wrote:
Tracy Dae;499756 wrote:
Speyfly;499702 wrote:
I've deliberately stayed away from my local GC for the same reason.


I can't stay away. I really like playing that guitar and I want to buy it.


Wait for the AR420.. hopefuly you'll find a job by then ;)


I'm waiting to see the 420 and then will compare to the 325. I'm pretty sure that the the 420 will be the one, violin burst, yeah!
ramalhais
#16 Posted : 10/31/2012 3:56:40 PM
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AR420 already available?
http://www.ebay.com/itm/...20-VLS-NEW-/271090720758

Too bad importing it would be too expensive...

EDIT:
Real photos (low quality) here:
http://www.grotonguitars...s/ar420vls/ar420vls.html
I'm really GASing righ now... help! :D
--
Pedro Ramalhais
--
Ibanez S1625FB NT Prestige Japan 2004 (F04)
Ibanez AR2000 VV Prestige Japan 2002 (F02)
Ibanez AR2000 VV Prestige Japan 1998 (F98)
Speyfly
#17 Posted : 11/1/2012 1:56:49 AM
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I've heard some time in November.
Tracy Dae
#14 Posted : 11/1/2012 4:09:52 AM
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ramalhais;499763 wrote:
Wait for the AR420.. hopefuly you'll find a job by then ;)


But I am bonding with this specific guitar.


The mind is like a parachute...
...It only works when its open.
Dick Foster
#11 Posted : 11/1/2012 2:08:57 PM
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What's are differences between the 320 and 420?

Except for finish maybe, they look pretty much the same, both nice, with the same features etc. I'm still trying to get the hang of decoding Ibanez model numbers.

ramalhais;499763 wrote:
Tracy Dae;499756 wrote:
Speyfly;499702 wrote:
I've deliberately stayed away from my local GC for the same reason.


I can't stay away. I really like playing that guitar and I want to buy it.


Wait for the AR420.. hopefuly you'll find a job by then ;)
BillyC@Ibanez
#12 Posted : 11/1/2012 2:24:10 PM
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Dick Foster;499832 wrote:


Except for finish maybe, they look pretty much the same, both nice, with the same features etc. I'm still trying to get the hang of decoding Ibanez model numbers.


Heres a handy guide for that... Original source is here: http://www.guitarmasterc...anez_guitar_buying_guide

Aesthetics:

You can tell what an Ibanez will look like based on its model number. Ibanez uses 3-4(4 being a prestige unless it has a “7” then it is a 7string version of the series) numbers in their models. The first number tells you the series. The higher number, the better quality and features you will have. For example: an RG120 is at the bottom of the quality and feature range, but an RG550 is higher up there! Now you can tell what Aesthetics the guitar has by the last 2 numbers.

20 – HH pickups, no pick guard
50- HSH pickups, with pick guard
70 – HSH pickups, no pick guard
60 – HSS, no pick guard
65 - *rare* HS pick ups, no pick guard
Note, the 5 series will be MIJ and of high quality, however, recent “5” series guitars and above have a “1” before it making it a 4 number model number, and a prestige. So if you want a new guitar, with a pick guard, then you know it will have to be a 1550 series number. You can do research to see if they exist. Other things you can tell from the model number:

DX = Sharktooth inlay
LTD= limited (not really, marketing gimmick) sharktooth inlay
M= Maple fretboard.
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Dick Foster on 11/1/2012(UTC)
Matthew@ibanez
#18 Posted : 11/1/2012 2:26:32 PM
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the 320 has a Tiger Maple top and is exlusive to Guitar Center and Musicians Friend.

The 420 has a Flamed Maple Top and an abalone body binding

The 325 has a Figured Bubinga top

Those factors and the different finishes are the differences I know of.



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Dick Foster on 11/1/2012(UTC)
Dick Foster
#13 Posted : 11/1/2012 5:19:52 PM
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Ah some new pieces to the puzzle. Thankyou.
BillyC@Ibanez;499833 wrote:
Dick Foster;499832 wrote:


Except for finish maybe, they look pretty much the same, both nice, with the same features etc. I'm still trying to get the hang of decoding Ibanez model numbers.


Heres a handy guide for that... Original source is here: http://www.guitarmasterc...anez_guitar_buying_guide

Aesthetics:

You can tell what an Ibanez will look like based on its model number. Ibanez uses 3-4(4 being a prestige unless it has a “7” then it is a 7string version of the series) numbers in their models. The first number tells you the series. The higher number, the better quality and features you will have. For example: an RG120 is at the bottom of the quality and feature range, but an RG550 is higher up there! Now you can tell what Aesthetics the guitar has by the last 2 numbers.

20 – HH pickups, no pick guard
50- HSH pickups, with pick guard
70 – HSH pickups, no pick guard
60 – HSS, no pick guard
65 - *rare* HS pick ups, no pick guard
Note, the 5 series will be MIJ and of high quality, however, recent “5” series guitars and above have a “1” before it making it a 4 number model number, and a prestige. So if you want a new guitar, with a pick guard, then you know it will have to be a 1550 series number. You can do research to see if they exist. Other things you can tell from the model number:

DX = Sharktooth inlay
LTD= limited (not really, marketing gimmick) sharktooth inlay
M= Maple fretboard.

Dick Foster
#19 Posted : 11/1/2012 5:33:01 PM
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Thanks, that's more good info.

So it seems to be a matter of cosmetics in many cases.

You folks seem to have a fairly complex scheme, no wonder my pea brain is having a difficut time coming to grips with it.

I did not know till now that Ibanez made any models exclusively for specific store chains. I thought it was more of a regional thing. Is this to reduce costs or something that their buyers asked for specifically for exclusivity or can you simply not say?

That abalone binding is striking but then I love highly figured wood too, decisions decisions.

Matthew@ibanez;499834 wrote:
the 320 has a Tiger Maple top and is exlusive to Guitar Center and Musicians Friend.

The 420 has a Flamed Maple Top and an abalone body binding

The 325 has a Figured Bubinga top

Those factors and the different finishes are the differences I know of.


Tracy Dae
#21 Posted : 11/2/2012 12:53:56 AM
Tracy Dae


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Dick Foster;499841 wrote:
I did not know till now that Ibanez made any models exclusively for specific store chains.


Some dealers will contract with Ibanez and other brands to provide exclusive models to help the dealer compete with other dealers. If you want that specific guitar, you have to buy it from that specific dealer.

Both the AR320 and AR325 are beautiful well made guitars that play exceptionally well. My local GC has an AR325 on the wall as well as this specific AR320 and I like them both, but I am bonding with the AR320. Who knows why we bond with a specific instrument? We just do.



The mind is like a parachute...
...It only works when its open.
Dick Foster
#22 Posted : 11/2/2012 3:41:04 PM
Dick Foster


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Yeah I read where you're currently afflicted with a lusting for that 420 but you're conflicted over justifying the expenditure right now. You almost have me wanting one. Perhaps you could sell your blood at the blood bank or maybe get a gig in a topless bar? Where there's a will, there's always a way. You'll get it.

Tracy Dae;499847 wrote:
Dick Foster;499841 wrote:
I did not know till now that Ibanez made any models exclusively for specific store chains.


Some dealers will contract with Ibanez and other brands to provide exclusive models to help the dealer compete with other dealers. If you want that specific guitar, you have to buy it from that specific dealer.

Both the AR320 and AR325 are beautiful well made guitars that play exceptionally well. My local GC has an AR325 on the wall as well as this specific AR320 and I like them both, but I am bonding with the AR320. Who knows why we bond with a specific instrument? We just do.



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