Where to start on this money making machine, one of the only guitars that has jumped over 200 in price over the last year, while remaining almost the exact same?
On to the guitar specs:
The specs: The RG1570 is the newer version of Ibanez’s familiar “Superstrat” style RG570 shape stemming from a few modifications to the traditional Fender Stratocaster design, and it doesn’t dissapoint with it’s sharp looks and (in this case) Royal Blue sparkle finish. The new numbering system for Ibanez goes like this, if it’s got 4 digits in the number, and the starting digit is a 1 or a 2, it’s got a Prestige neck. This Japan-made guitar has a 24 fret Prestige Neck with Jumbo wide frets, Ibanez V7 and V8 humbuckers with an S1 in the middle, simple 1 volume and 1 tone control configuration, a set-in (not plate mounted) input jack, Gotoh tuners, and a double locking Edge Pro Tremolo.
Now that the boring crap is out of the way, lets get to the guitar instead of the numbers and letters which mean close to nothing for someone who’s never seen or played one.
The Neck: Ibanez’s aim for the RG1570 is to tailor to the higher skill level, middle budget guitar player with interests in speed. And in that area, it does not dissapoint. The prestige neck I made a deliberate effort to explain is quite the nice thing when it comes to speed-friendly guitars. It’s 2 millimeters thinner than Ibanez’s already thin neck, not to mention it has a flatter fretboard. For those who want to go from 0 to 24 in a few notes flat, this is your guitar. The unfinished back, jumbo frets and low action makes sure you’ll hit the notes no matter how fast you’re going. Of the very few qualms with the neck of the guitar, one has to be the finished frets. The edges have been rounded a little too much, abandoning a more squared off edge. What this does is it gives a slight less crown to the top of the fret, therefore allowing a little bit less vibrato room on the high and low strings. This may seem like nitpicking, but when something one would easily overlook is actually noticed, it needs to be said.
The body: It is very comfortable, and the cutaways allow a decent amount of access to the upper frets. The countoured edges are rounded and comfortable while still maintaining the sharp looks associated with an Ibanez RG. Over the last few years, the paint has changed. The 2004 model had a finish with a much finer sparkle to it, but over the last year the price has jumped and the sparkles in the finish have become much larger. A benefit to this is the new thickness of paint and durability, while the 2004 model’s had a slightly less sparkle to it, they were noticeably weaker and prone to small chipping in sharp areas like the pickup and neck sockets. Assumedly, Ibanez figured it out an accounted for it with a thicker, stronger type of finish, hopefully picking up the shortcomings of the older finish.
The electronics: They are one of the very few dissapointments of this guitar. To pair a medium-priced guitar that is conducive to lead playing and crunch with the lower output, lower costs V and S series pickups is a shame. They should’ve used their upper range Dimarzio IBZ pickups with much higher output and versatility. However, what it does mean is that the weak pickups on the guitar are just begging to be replaced with whatever pickups (EMG, Dimarzio, Seymour Duncan, ETC) you desire. Personally, I like the idea of putting my own pickup preference. The guitar you buy was mass produced with a general population of guitarists in mind, and you want your guitar to have you in mind. There’s a HUGE range of pickups for every tone out there, and there’s no reason why your BC Rich can’t have jazz pickups, and your Benedetto Hollowbody can’t have a metal pickup. Obviously this is an exaggeration, but i’m trying to emphasize the fact that since no two players are the same, their instrument should follow suit.
The Hardware: The edge pro bridge is a mixed blessing. While still being a nuisance like all floating bridge, it does have some endearing qualities. While Floyd Rose bridges require you to cut the ball end of the string to insert them into the bridge, the Edge Pro lets you slide the strings through the bottom and lock them with the ball end or cut them off if you desire. Of the biggest annoyances of the bridge, it’s the fact that the peolpe at Ibanez put the fine tuners at an angle, basically asking you to scratch up the finish with your finger nails when struggling to change the fine tunings. The Gotoh tuners, like always, are great. They are smooth, sensitive, and don’t fatigue the hand when using them like mini-grovers seem to. And you will be using these tuners. When you change strings, you’ll be using them while you’re trying to find the right tuning while finding that precious equilibrium you need from a floating tremolo. What they should’ve done, much like every company should do with their floating bridges, is incorporate a mechanism by which you can lock the bridge to turn it into a fixed bridge. There are people out there that make such products, but I can’t really give them support until I try one out myself.
The whole shebang: It’s a great guitar, but as I mentioned, it has its irritating shortcomings. But that shouldn’t stop anyone from seriously considering adding this gem to their collection. With a few modifications, like any guitar, it can turn out to be your perfect guitar. Unlike some guitars, this shows potential to be spectacular, but it didn’t quite jump the hurdle.
The Pros: Fast neck, comfortable, great action, excellent tuners, durable hardware, Ibanez reliability.
The Cons: Low output pickups, poor fret finishing, poorly designed bridge.