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The best of the best from Ibanez Japan
The J Custom is what you get when you gather together the finest luthiers in Japan and give them all the resources Ibanez has to offer.
Prior to 1996, the J Custom was only available in Japan.
Each of these guitars is a product of a ridiculous amount of work – Ibanez can only produce 12 of these a month. Normally, Ibanez takes orders on the J Custom in January and February, and then they stop.
The J Customs sport the very best woods and necks, pickups and tremolo systems Ibanez has to offer. The frets are filed and dressed with the most painstaking attention – they’re each rounded on the ends by hand – and the maple tops are thicker than on most other Ibanez guitars.
RG1302 – One of the first made available in the USA
The RG1302 had an ash body, Lo Pro Edge Tremolo, and DiMarzio Pickups. It was later produced as a Prestige series guitar, with very few changes.
The Latest J Custom – JCRG20126
The latest J Custom guitar comes with an Alder body and a beautiful flamed maple top. The neck is a Super Wizard J Custom, and has a bound rosewood fingerboard, with the “Tree of Life” inlay.
The sound in produced with two Seymour Duncan pickups – a Jazz Model in the neck and a Custom 5 at the bridge. The Custom 5 gives you a vintage, clean and very present sound, with less distortion. The Jazz pickup (SH-2n) – provides a very articulate, clean sound, with moderate output.
Speaking of the bridge, fine tuning and tremolo duties are performed by a Edge Zero tremolo w/ZPS3.
What is ZPS3?
That’s Ibanez’s zero point trem system. While not limited to the J Custom series, it’s still a pretty cool bit of machinery.
It’s made of lightweight Duralumin, that provides much greater tuning stability – even staying in tune if you break a string – which is some feat considering that floating tremolo systems are pretty much centered around string tension vs spring tension.
You can adjust the spring tension with a simple turn of the spring adjustment knob, on the back.
It’s a very cool tremolo system overall – and like everything on the J Custom guitars, it’s the best stuff Ibanez has to offer.
The five piece neck is finished on the back to a fast velvety sheen, and stays slim – 17mm at the first fret, and only 19mm at the 12th fret.
You know a guitar that is made by the best luthiers Ibanez has – a guitar that is only produced at the rate of 12 per year – is going to cost you a pretty penny. This one has an MSRP of around $5,000. This is still a fair price considering all the hard work that goes into these guitars, and their relative exclusivity.
One thing you can always say about Ibanez – you get what you pay for, and they do offer guitars at price points that will make sure nobody gets left out – whether its the pro musician who needs absolute perfection, or the 15 year old’s first guitar. The J Custom is definitely geared more toward the pro musician.