Ibanez RG Prestige...
Metal To The Max

Ibanez RG Prestige 3550MZ Ibanez RG Prestige 3550MZ

The Ibanez RG Prestige series guitars were introduced in 1987 and immediately became a favorite of Metal players for their thin, fast necks and serious hard-edged Rock and Metal tones. Today they remain one of the favorite guitars of hard core rockers. The RG Prestige models are now all made in Japan by Ibanez's finest luthiers, with Wizard necks with Prestige finishing, Edge Zero and Edge Pro bridges, and a broad range of intense pickups in different configurations.

In addition, all RG Prestige models share the "superstrat" styling and basswood bodies. The body styling makes for a very comfortable and well balanced guitar to hold and play and the basswood body provides a great rock tone with rich sustain.

All Ibanez RG Prestige models are great playing instruments due to the ultra fast Wizard necks that have a 25.5" scale and 24 frets. The scale length is comparable to most 22 fret guitars which results in the frets being closer together on the Wizard necks which contributes greatly to fast playing(read shredding!). In addition, the renowned Ibanez All Access Neck Joint makes access to the upper frets very easy.

Finally, the Ibanez Edge tremolo makes dive-bombing and pull-up screeching pyrotechnics a breeze. Ever hear Steve Vai or Herman Li go insane with mind-blowing whammy bar shenanigans? Yes? Then you know exactly what I'm talking about. If you want an all-out, take no prisoners Heavy Metal weapon the Ibanez RG Prestige series guitars have you covered.

Before we take a look at the Ibanez RG Prestige Series guitars, let's have a look at the pickups used, the necks and the bridges. Ibanez RG Pickups, Necks and Bridges The page will open in another window or tab so that you don't lose your place here.

The Guitars...

For 2011, the Ibanez RG Prestige series consists of 13 Models. Let's have a look at them.

  • Ibanez RG3770Z

    The RG3770Z features a basswood body for great tone and is available in a gorgeous Caribbean Blue Lagoon finish with black pickups and controls. Fabulous playability is provided by the Super Wizard Prestige 5-piece maple/walnut neck. Even more great tone and playability are provided by a bound rosewood fingerboard with jumbo frets and wedge sharktooth position inlays.

    Blistering Metal sound comes from a DiMarzio Tone Zone DP155 humbucker at the bridge, a DiMarzio True Velvet DP175S single-coil in the middle position and a DiMarzio Air Norton DP 193 humbucker at the neck. In order to shape your sound and tone just the way you want it, the RG3770Z features master volume and tone controls as well as a 5-way pickup selector switch. The pickup selector allows you to select the bridge pickup by itself, split the bridge pickup and combine it with the middle pickup, select the middle pickup by itself, split the neck pickup and combine it with the middle pickup or select the neck pickup by itself.

    Finally, helping you stay in tune as well as providing the ability to perform all sorts of whammy bar pyrotechnics, the Ibanez RG Prestige RG3770Z features the Edge Zero tremolo bridge with the ZPS3 spring system.

    This is one serious Rock and Metal machine!

  • Ibanez RG3570Z

    The specifications for the RG3570Z are the same as those of the RG3770Z except for the choices of finishes and the color of the controls. The RG3570Z is available in Laser Blue or Candy Apple Red. The controls are vibrant yellow with either body finish. It sounds like that would be a weird color combination but it looks surprisingly good.

    If you want a serious rocking guitar that will stand out in a crowd, the Ibanez RG Prestige RG3570Z will do it for you.

  • Ibanez RG3550MZ

    Now this is one I REALLY like. The majority of the specifications for the RG3550MZ are the same as for the RG3770Z and the RG3570Z. The only sonic difference is that the RG3550MZ uses a maple fingerboard rather than a rosewood fingerboard. This gives it a slightly brighter tone than the rosewood fingerboard would. I prefer a darker tone, myself, but if you watch the video below, you'll see that this is one serious Metal monster.

    The thing I like the most about the RG3550MZ is its looks. It's available in two finishes: Galaxy Black and Galaxy White. In addition, the Galaxy Black sports a silver metallic pickguard and the Galaxy White sports a sort of pewter looking pickguard. They both look great and I think that a pickguard is one of the best things ever put on a guitar. If you play hard and don't have one you're going to end up scratching the crap out of the finish. Another thing I really like about the way these guys look is that the "outer" coils of the humbuckers are white while the "inner" coils and single-coil middle pickup are black. To me, that gives the guitars a very cool, unique look. I especially like the Galaxy Black finish.

    If you're looking for a very unique looking and bad ass sounding Metal guitar the Ibanez RG Prestige RG3550MZ just might be the thing. I know it definitely does it for me.

  • Ibanez RG3250MZ

    The RG3250MZ shares the body construction and materials, the neck construction and materials, inlays, pickups and bridge of its Prestige stablemates. Like the RG3550MZ it sports a maple fingerboard which give it a slightly brighter sound than the rosewood fingerboard would.

    What makes the RG3250MZ unique is the body finishes and pickguards. The two finishes are Desert Sun Yellow and Frozen Ocean Blue. To my eyes the Desert Sun Yellow looks gaudy while the Frozen Ocean Blue is somewhat more subdued but still looks(to me, at any rate) like a guitar you would see used in a Punk band.

    Even though both body finishes look gaudy to me, the Ibanez RG Prestige RG3250MZ still has all the roaring Metal tone that its brothers do.

  • Ibanez RG2228

    If you want to be able to get super low notes without having to down tune your low E string, the Prestige RG2228 is just the ticket. In addition to the traditional six strings tuned to standard tuning, you get a 7th string tuned to a low A# and an 8th string tuned to a low F. It takes a bit of playing to get used to the 8 strings and the necessarily wide neck but once you do you've got a full range that you will never get with a 6 string.

    The RG2228 features a basswood body for nice, rich tone and a 5-piece maple/wenge Wizard-8 Prestige neck with a 27" scale length. The neck sports a rosewood fingerboard with jumbo frets and pearl dot position inlays. The rosewood fingerboard contributes to the dark sound provided by the basswood body. Providing tuning stability and great sustain is a Wizard Fixed Edge III-8 bridge and GOTOH tuners on the headstock.

    Pounding sound is provided by EMG 808 humbucking pickups at the bridge and neck. Helping you shape your tone are master volume and tone controls and a 3-way pickup selector switch that allows you to use either pickup alone or both together.

    The Ibanez RG Prestige RG2228 is definitely a tone monster. If you want down tuned sound while still having standard tuning, the RG2228 is the way to go.

  • Ibanez RG1570

    The RG1570 is one of the best Metal or Hard Rock guitars you will ever find. Its basswood body contributes to great hardcore tone and sustain and is available in two finishes: Black and Candy Apple. As usual, I prefer the Black finish because of its sinister look but both finishes look great.

    The RG1570 plays as good as it looks due to the 5-piece Maple/Walnut Wizard Prestige neck which sports a rosewood fretboard with pearl dot position inlays. Of course, the rosewood neck contributes even more to the hardcore tone.

    Blistering sound comes from Ibanez's own specially designed pickups: a V8 humbucker at the bridge, an S1 single-coil in the middle position and a V7 humbucker at the neck. You can dial in pretty much any tone you want from crystal clear to toatally searing and nasty. Helping you shape your tone are master volume and tone controls and a 5-way pickup selector switch that gives you the same pickup combination choices that the system on the RG3770Z does. If you really want to get wild, the Edge Pro tremolo bridge lets you pretend to be Steve Vai all day long.

    When it's all said and done the Ibanez RG Prestige RG1570 is not only a gorgeous guitar, it's a seriously hard core, rocking machine.

  • Ibanez RG1550ML

    The RG1550ML is for you "lefties". Its specifications are much the same as those of the RG1570 with a few differences. First, the only body finish choice is Black(okay by me!). The fingerboard is Maple with black dot position inlays rather than rosewood with pearl dot position inlays. The RG1550ML has the same great playability as the RG1570 but has a slightly brighter sound due to the maple fretboard.

    The Ibanez RG Prestige RG1550ML features the same neck as the RG1570 but uses the Edge Zero bridge with the ZPS3 spring system for greater tuning stability when you decide to go wild with the whammy bar.

    Again, this is one seriously beautiful, hard rocking machine. If you decide you want one of these, I guarantee you'll love it.

  • Ibanez RG1550M

    The RG1550M is very similer to the RG1550ML in that it uses the same neck, fingerboard, pickups, controls and body material. The major differences are the finishes available, the bridges used with each finish and pickguards.

    The RG1550M is available in three finishes: White Plaster, Phantom Blue and Poisoned Pumpkin. I like the first two finishes but, to me, the Poisoned Pumpkin finish just doesn't do it. It looks like it sounds. All three finishes have a black pickguard. The White Plaster finish comes with the Edge Zero bridge with the ZPS3 spring system while the other two finishes come with the Edge Pro Bridge. Why the difference in bridges? Beats me. If you've read the descriptions of the bridges, you know that the Edge Zero has much greater tuning stability than the Edge Pro but the ZPS3 spring system makes it much stiffer and hard to do "vibrato" type maneuvers. Maybe that's the reason.

    At any rate, the Ibanez RG Prestige RG1550M is a great rocker if I could only get over that Poisoned Pumpkin finish. Maybe that one was designed for Linus to play in the pumpkin patch while he's waiting for the Great Pumpkin.

  • Ibanez RG1527M

    If you just can't get low enough with 6 strings and don't want to leave "gaps" in the scale by down tuning, the RG1527M might be just the ticket for you. With the 7th string you can get down to a low A# without having any "gaps" in the scale.

    The RG1527M is a great sounding guitar with the basswood body and the 5-piece Maple/Wenge Wizard-7 Prestige neck with a maple fingerboard all contributing to great tone. And, of course, you have all the fabulous playability that the Ibanez RG series of guitars has always been famous for. The RG1527M has only one body finish: Galaxy White with no pickguard and a black headstock. I'd like to see the body finished in black also but nobody asked me.

    The RG1527M gets great, thumping sound from a V77 humbucker at the neck and a V87 humbucker at the bridge. These are the 7-string versions of the V7 and V8. To help you shape just the tone you want, you get master volume and tone controls and a 5-way pickup selector switch. The switching is slightly funky. The first position gives you the bridge humbucker alone, in the 2nd position the bridge humbucker is still selected but it's wired in parallel rather than in series. If you don't know anything about electronics, what that results in is doubling the output of the pickup(on top of being a guitar junkie I'm also degreed in Physics, fortunately, so I can give you the layman's eye view of what's going on). In the 3rd position, both pickups are active, in the 4th the coils are split giving you the inside coil of each humbucker and in the 5th you get the neck pickup by itself. Can you say, "serious tonal diversity?" Finally, to finish things off, the RG1527M sports the Edge Pro 7 bridge which is the 7-string version of the Edge Pro.

    All in all, theIbanez RG Prestige RG1527M is a cool, great sounding(and playing) guitar. If you want extended scale range without leaving any gaps in the scale(like you would if you down tuned the low E string on a 6-string), this is a guitar that you should take a serious look at.

  • Ibanez RG1527

    The RG1527 is nearly identical to the RG1527M. The differences are that the body is finished in Black(my color!), the fingerboard is rosewood for a slightly darker tone than the RG1527M(yes!) and the RG1527 features the Edge Zero 7 bridge with the ZPS3 spring system which is the 7_string version of the Edge Zero with ZPS3.

    If you like the Ibanez RG Prestige RG1527M but want a slightly darker tone and better tuning stability, the RG1527 will give you exactly what you're looking for.

  • Ibanez RG1451

    The RG1451 is another great offering from Ibanez. It features a basswood body with a 5-piece Maple/Walnut Wizard Prestige neck. The neck features a rosewood fingerboard to continue the rich tone provided by the basswood body. The fingerboard sports pearl dot position inlays so that you can keep track of where you are. The RG1451 is available in two finishes: Night Crow and Aluminum Grey. Both options feature a black pickguard. I like both of these finishes. They both look great.

    Serious rocking sound is provided by a V6F humbucker in the bridge and neck positions and the RTS single coil in the middle position. To shape your tone to liking you get master volume and tone controls as well as a 5-way pickup selector switch.The selector switch gives you the same pickup combinations as the selector switch on the 3770Z does. You get a nearly endless variety of tones at the flick of the switch.

    Finishing things out, the Ibanez RG Prestige RG1451 features Ibanez's super solid Tight End fixed bridge to give you superb tuning stability and sustain for days.

    If you're not into whammy bar pyrotechnics and just want a bad ass sounding guitar with top notch tuning stability, great tone, sustain and superb playability, the Ibanez RG Prestige RG1451 is a great choice for you.

  • Ibanez RG1421F

    The RG1421F is a limited edition 10th Anniversary model. Its basic features are the same as those of the RG1451. One of the differences lies in the finishes: Marine Blue Burst and Black Haze Burst, both with Flamed Maple tops. Also, there is no pickguard for either finish option.

    The other difference is in the pickups and pickup selector combinations. The RG1421F features the V6F pickups in the bridge and neck positions and no middle pickup. The pickup selector switch gives you the same pickup/coil combinations that the RG1527M does. Again, you've got some really great tonal variations right at your fingertips.

    Great looks, great tone, superb playability and exclusivity? What are you waiting for? Grab one before they're all snapped up. When Ibanez says Limited Edition, they mean it.

  • Ibanez RG1420F

    The RG1420F is another limited edition 10th Anniversary model. It's basic specifications are the same as those of the RG1421F. This time, the differences lie in the finishes and bridge.

    The RG1420F has two finish options: Black Haze Burst and Red Flame Burst. Again, neither finish provides a pickguard.

    As far as the bridge goes, the Ibanez RG Prestige RG1420F is for those that are into the whammy bar pyrotechnics. Whammy bar fun is provided by the Edge Pro tremolo bridge.

If you've visited other pages on the site you know that I like to give you videos of the guitars if I can find them so that you can see and hear the guitars in action. That's really handy if you're buying online because you can't pull a guitar off the wall and play it yourself. In this case, there are so many guitars that I can't really do that because I simply don't have the time. However, I did dig up videos that feature models with each pickup configurations so that you can hear them and get a good idea of the sound of each of the configuration. The first one is the Ibanez RG Prestige RG3550MZ. This is a fantastic guitar. Watch and enjoy.

Credit: theperfectguitar, YouTube member

Check out this great video of the RG2228:

Credit: n0rd14nd, YouTube member

Here is another cool video, this time of the RG1570:

Credit: chatreeo, YouTube member

And, finally, take a look at this video of the RG1527:

Credit: IainDavies3, YouTube member

All in all, the Ibanez RG Prestige series has something for everyone. Pick your weapon and let the Metal Mayhem begin! If you want Metal, the Ibanez RG Prestige series has an instrument for YOU! Bear in mind that the guitars I've listed are the 2011 line-up. You will find other RG Prestige series guitars out there.

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