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  1. #1

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    Hi!
    I am struggling with a huge guitar related dilemma. I am looking for a new semi hollow guitar and as an Ibanez fan I'd most likely choose this brand. So lets look at three options
    1. Buying AS53 (290Eur) model and upgrading it with better pickups (if needed), fancy pickguard from Ibanez spare part shop, Graphtech nut and maybe other parts. Also I already have quick change stoptail and suregrip knobs, so I can use it. I played this guitar without amp in TKF finnish and I love the feel and look of it. I already have Ibanez S07LTD which I modded a bit and it plays great. That's why I seriousky consider this option.
    2. Collect a bit more shmoney, buy AS73 (400Eur) model and keep it like it is with no mods. I am not sure, if this is such a big difference comparing to AS53.
    3. Collect much more shmoney (so wait longer) and go for AS83 (540Eur) model. This one has Super 58 pickups.

    What do You think, which option will result in having better guitar? Maybe You have some experience with those models?
    Thanks!

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  3. #2

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    It depends on how comfortable and how musical you sound with the guitar(s) in your hands. Have you been able to play them? Does the least expensive inspire you?
    I'd always go with the most I could afford because it's more than just the specs on paper and the pickups, it's the build quality and materials, the factory the guitar was built in, etc. that makes these guitars different. Ibanez guitars are built in different places/countries depending on the model or even the run of that model. If you can, find the one that speaks to you, make music with it and upgrade it as your musicality (or gear obsession) grows.
    That's what I'd say
    David

  4. #3

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    I don't know how the used market in your part of the world it, but I'd definately consider buying used and just going for the good deal whether it'd be an Ibanez or something like an Epiphone Sheraton.

  5. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by TruthHertz View Post
    It depends on how comfortable and how musical you sound with the guitar(s) in your hands. Have you been able to play them? Does the least expensive inspire you?
    I'd always go with the most I could afford because it's more than just the specs on paper and the pickups, it's the build quality and materials, the factory the guitar was built in, etc. that makes these guitars different. Ibanez guitars are built in different places/countries depending on the model or even the run of that model. If you can, find the one that speaks to you, make music with it and upgrade it as your musicality (or gear obsession) grows.
    That's what I'd say
    David
    Thanks a lot for that comment! I was not aware, that those models can be from different factories. I checked AS53. AS73 is in the store close to me, so I think I should go ahead and also play a bit on this one.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lobomov View Post
    I don't know how the used market in your part of the world it, but I'd definately consider buying used and just going for the good deal whether it'd be an Ibanez or something like an Epiphone Sheraton.
    Actually used market in Poland is not bad, but also not so big, when you have precised expectations. I can see for ex. a nice deal for used AS153 for just a bit more than new AS83, so definitely makes sense. However finding a good deal requires some hunting

  6. #5

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    The models under consideration by the OP are very inexpensive and are "built to a price point". Therefore, I would recommend factoring a pickup upgrade into the final price.

    I own an AF125 ($1000 USD). It is a very nice guitar, but the Chinese made Super 58 Customs that came stock on the guitar were IMO junk. Spending another $200 on higher quality pickups greatly improved the performance of the instrument.

  7. #6

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    I know I am the ultimate enabler here but save your money and try to find a used AS103 or even better a used AS200... If you have any gear at all to play save your money and go for the ultimate. A used as103 that you can then upgrade with Seth Lovers or Gibson Classic 57s is a really great option too. Have a tech replace the wiring harness and pots too. I've had a couple five as103s in my lifetime, one had Seth Lovers, one had Gibson Classic 57s... They were monster guitars. Really wroth looking around. Right now Ibanez does a AS103 in macassar ebony that is real sweet. I bet the european online shops have them. Like I said a bit more money but oh baby worth the coin...

    Just my 3 cents

    Big

  8. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by FredC View Post
    The models under consideration by the OP are very inexpensive and are "built to a price point". Therefore, I would recommend factoring a pickup upgrade into the final price.

    I own an AF125 ($1000 USD). It is a very nice guitar, but the Chinese made Super 58 Customs that came stock on the guitar were IMO junk. Spending another $200 on higher quality pickups greatly improved the performance of the instrument.
    Actually there is a bit weird with this Super 58 pickups. Looking at the store with Ibanez spare parts, You can buy pickups called Super 58 for ~50, 125 or 220 Euro, so definitely not all S58's arer the same quality. Therefore I wonder, if that makes any sense to look at stock pickups in my price range or better to assume from start, that they will be replaced as You just mentioned.

    Quote Originally Posted by BigMikeinNJ View Post
    I know I am the ultimate enabler here but save your money and try to find a used AS103 or even better a used AS200... If you have any gear at all to play save your money and go for the ultimate. A used as103 that you can then upgrade with Seth Lovers or Gibson Classic 57s is a really great option too. Have a tech replace the wiring harness and pots too. I've had a couple five as103s in my lifetime, one had Seth Lovers, one had Gibson Classic 57s... They were monster guitars. Really wroth looking around. Right now Ibanez does a AS103 in macassar ebony that is real sweet. I bet the european online shops have them. Like I said a bit more money but oh baby worth the coin...
    Currently there is no new AS103 available in Europe. Today series goes like: 53, 63, 73, 83, 93 153, 200. I am not sure, which one can be compared to AS103. I've had the possibility to play used AF105 with floating pickup recently. Even though this is not exactly guitar for me, I have to say I was just mesmerized by the feel, quality and look of it. I can imagine, that AS103 offers the same thing.

    Thanks a lot for answers posted so far! This is very helpfull and eye openning

  9. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by BigMikeinNJ View Post
    I know I am the ultimate enabler here but save your money and try to find a used AS103 or even better a used AS200... If you have any gear at all to play save your money and go for the ultimate. A used as103 that you can then upgrade with Seth Lovers or Gibson Classic 57s is a really great option too. Have a tech replace the wiring harness and pots too. I've had a couple five as103s in my lifetime, one had Seth Lovers, one had Gibson Classic 57s... They were monster guitars. Really wroth looking around. Right now Ibanez does a AS103 in macassar ebony that is real sweet. I bet the european online shops have them. Like I said a bit more money but oh baby worth the coin...

    Just my 3 cents

    Big

    Totally agree with Big on this one. Doesn't have to be a specific model, but be patient, save a little, and you'll likely be able to land something that exceeds your expectations of the three models mentioned in the OP.
    Jared

  10. #9

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    Thanks for all the answers! Looking at your posts changed a bit my point of view. Now I can see two ways to go:

    1. Go for AS53 model and spend some money on upgrades with decent quality parts. Looks like it doesn't make so much sense to spend more money on intermediate models with just nicer finnish, when for ex. pickups still most likely would be replaced. When I modify guitar myself at least I know, what is the real quality of the parts used and also this is fun to do the modsIbanez AS dilemma This matte finnish is also advantage for me. Point of concern here is just the quality of wood used to build the guitar. Now Ibanez uses plenty of wood species.

    2. Spend much more money on guitar itself and look for used high shelf model, where upgrades are not needed. The wood should be better quality on this one I guess and also collectible value is a plusIbanez AS dilemma

    BTW. This is great to have the place for this kind of conversation!

  11. #10

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    I really like my 335 type of Ibanez. Not sure of the model, I bought it new in 1977. It's when Ritenour was playing this one, before Scofield model. Maybe you could find a used one of these, they're really nice.
    Attached Images Attached Images Ibanez AS dilemma-ibanez-jpg 
    B+
    Frank (aka fep)

  12. #11

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    Looks like an Artist 2630, which was the precusor to the AS200. Late 1970s. Saw one a few months ago wiyh an asking price of 1,400$ - significantly lower than an early 1980s AS200 (usually 2k$)

    Quote Originally Posted by fep View Post
    I really like my 335 type of Ibanez. Not sure of the model, I bought it new in 1977. It's when Ritenour was playing this one, before Scofield model. Maybe you could find a used one of these, they're really nice.

  13. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by slusar View Post
    2. Spend much more money on guitar itself and look for used high shelf model, where upgrades are not needed. The wood should be better quality on this one I guess and also collectible value is a plusIbanez AS dilemma
    I don't think there is much 'collectible value' .. I've seen used AS153's and JSM10's for 650-700€ while an AS200 goes for 1000-1150€ here just north of Poland.

  14. #13

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    Friend, your "problem" is not "huge" but rather a nice one. They're all good, or at least well made for the price. The only design/manufacturing flaw I know of is the tailpiece of AFJ-91, which tends to break. But you are into semi-hollow, no problem there. I'd go for the Super 58 PU's, despite all the confusion around them. I think the Chinese-made versions are good enough. At least, I get a lot of praise for the tone of my AFJ91.

  15. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by fep View Post
    I really like my 335 type of Ibanez. Not sure of the model, I bought it new in 1977. It's when Ritenour was playing this one, before Scofield model. Maybe you could find a used one of these, they're really nice.
    This one is beautifull, real gem! Am I correct, that it has a big piece of metal under the bridge for better sustain?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gitterbug View Post
    Friend, your "problem" is not "huge" but rather a nice one.
    Yes, exactly. I'd like to have only this kind of problems

  16. #15

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    My $0.02...

    I try to buy the best piece of wood I can find that plays, feels, and sounds right in my hands unamplified, regardless of brand, model, price, looks, hardware, reputation, or anything else. You can find a good (or bad) piece of wood at any price point if you try enough guitars. Then you have something to work with and you can dress it up whatever way looks and sounds the best to you. Just my opinion.

  17. #16

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    I REALLY don't care for the Super 58 Customs. I've had them in a couple guitars and couldn't stand them in either a solid or semi-hollow body. The MIJ Super 58's are a completely different story, and sound wonderful to me. The "Custom"s have a really unpleasant upper midrange that just makes my skin crawl. Getting rid of it means losing the whole top end of the tone. And it's not just that they're bright -I like bright pups- there's a nails-on-chalkboard quality inn there that just really doesn't work for me. But that's just me, YMMV.

  18. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by strumcat View Post
    My $0.02...

    I try to buy the best piece of wood I can find that plays, feels, and sounds right in my hands unamplified, regardless of brand, model, price, looks, hardware, reputation, or anything else. You can find a good (or bad) piece of wood at any price point if you try enough guitars. Then you have something to work with and you can dress it up whatever way looks and sounds the best to you. Just my opinion.
    Well said! Recently I found german shop shipping all over the Europe, where You can find most of Ibanez original parts, so cheap Ibanez (with decent wood) can be outfitted with high shelf parts keeping the brand originality. Not to mention generally huge guitar parts market. There is also one big advantage - You have your unique guitar fit to your needsIbanez AS dilemma

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  19. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by slusar View Post
    This one is beautifull, real gem! Am I correct, that it has a big piece of metal under the bridge for better sustain?

    I think you're seeing a reflection. The bridge floats and has two posts that I suppose help with sustain.
    Attached Images Attached Images Ibanez AS dilemma-ibanez-bridge-jpg 
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    Frank (aka fep)

  20. #19

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    He's talking about "the cloud" under the tailpiece, that's a separate piece of metal and it's more cosmetic than functional. Those early 2630s have Super 70s or Super80s they''re all tanks of guitars with outstanding pickups.
    Just to throw a wrench into he conversation here is a rare is stink AS103 in Spalted Maple, only 60 made of these. They also did a burl in blonde (60), a spalted in dark stain (60) and a burl in dark stain (60). Unfortunately they're hard as heck to find and they have the dreaded Super 58 customs in them. Ripe candidates for an upgrade to Lollar Low Winds, Seth Lovers or Gibson Classic 57s... Look at the sick wood on this puppy...

    Big

    Ibanez AS dilemma-64290459_10156487283857239_2851570521735168_n-jpgIbanez AS dilemma-64486285_10156487284037239_1318419930395181056_n-jpgIbanez AS dilemma-64623341_10156487283777239_1647557516399214592_n-jpgIbanez AS dilemma-64483794_10156487283752239_4302614231867457536_n-jpgIbanez AS dilemma-62608802_10156487284072239_407068960136101888_n-jpg

  21. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by BigMikeinNJ View Post
    He's talking about "the cloud" under the tailpiece, that's a separate piece of metal and it's more cosmetic than functional. Those early 2630s have Super 70s or Super80s they''re all tanks of guitars with outstanding pickups.
    Just to throw a wrench into he conversation here is a rare is stink AS103 in Spalted Maple, only 60 made of these. They also did a burl in blonde (60), a spalted in dark stain (60) and a burl in dark stain (60). Unfortunately they're hard as heck to find and they have the dreaded Super 58 customs in them. Ripe candidates for an upgrade to Lollar Low Winds, Seth Lovers or Gibson Classic 57s... Look at the sick wood on this puppy...
    My god, this wood is amazing. Now they have AS93ZW-NT model, which looks a bit simillar. Regarding the bridge, I actually was talking about this kind of metal block as on the picture below (source: IBANEZ bridge Gibraltar custom - Cosmo Black (2GB1MAC001)), but now I see, that maybe this is for different type of guitars.


  22. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by BigMikeinNJ View Post
    He's talking about "the cloud" under the tailpiece, that's a separate piece of metal and it's more cosmetic than functional. Those early 2630s have Super 70s or Super80s they''re all tanks of guitars with outstanding pickups.
    Just to throw a wrench into he conversation here is a rare is stink AS103 in Spalted Maple, only 60 made of these. They also did a burl in blonde (60), a spalted in dark stain (60) and a burl in dark stain (60). Unfortunately they're hard as heck to find and they have the dreaded Super 58 customs in them. Ripe candidates for an upgrade to Lollar Low Winds, Seth Lovers or Gibson Classic 57s... Look at the sick wood on this puppy...

    Big

    Ibanez AS dilemma-64290459_10156487283857239_2851570521735168_n-jpgIbanez AS dilemma-64486285_10156487284037239_1318419930395181056_n-jpgIbanez AS dilemma-64623341_10156487283777239_1647557516399214592_n-jpgIbanez AS dilemma-64483794_10156487283752239_4302614231867457536_n-jpgIbanez AS dilemma-62608802_10156487284072239_407068960136101888_n-jpg
    These LE AS103s are certainly eye-catching. Do you have any other members of the trio, Mike, or just that lone puppy?
    If my memory serves, did they also do similar LEs in the AF105 series?
    Jared

  23. #22

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    Regarding the mentioned Super58 "custom" (made-in-China) pickups, here are the part numbers of the excellent made-in-Japan original Super58 they were meant to replace, and the great Silent58 set.
    Attached Images Attached Images Ibanez AS dilemma-ibanez-3pu1j15811-png 

  24. #23

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    Ibanez's specs as listed are a joke - talk about "lost in translation" or better yet "Failure to communicate"
    Your ears will tell you the Japanese Super 58s are the
    real deal. The only other time Ibanez Super 58s were good and not made in Japan was back in the 80s when they had the AS120s built, Ibanez authorized Mighty Mite to build the real deal Super 58s and Mighty Mite delivered.

    And yeah over the years I've had a few of those special AS103s... I tell ya boys I searched long and hard. One day I got on Google, which I generally do not like, and searched 2-20 pages of links looking. I almost gave up but there in a cache was a link to an ad in GBase for a store in Montana. I called the place and somehow they had not only the AS103s in spalted maple and burl but also the AF105 model in floating and set pickup configuration. I paid full street price which was $799.00 plus $100.00 for the case. Just a week before I found a guy in Fairbanks Alaska that had one. Also somehow a music store in Fairbanks got a few. These were supposed to be Japan only but they had them, that one was a brown burl. I eventually sold it to a guy on the ICW site I knew. Over the years I've scored 3 or 4 of the blonde burls which in person are stunning. The BEST one I ever saw a trading buddy of mine got - he found THREE blonde burls in a week and bought them all... One of them was blond but the blond finish (or the wood) had a slightly reddish tint to it that was just amazing...

    Keep searching. Enjoy the hunt. Also, an older AS200 or a Terada AS200 for around $1500.00 is not that unusual if you keep looking.

    Big

  25. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by slusar View Post

    >>SNIP<<
    Currently there is no new AS103 available in Europe. Today series goes like: 53, 63, 73, 83, 93 153, 200. I am not sure, which one can be compared to AS103. I've had the possibility to play used AF105 with floating pickup recently. Even though this is not exactly guitar for me, I have to say I was just mesmerized by the feel, quality and look of it. I can imagine, that AS103 offers the same thing.

    Thanks a lot for answers posted so far! This is very helpfull and eye openning
    I'm in the minority I guess, because I have two AS-103's and an AS-153 all with S-58 customs and can get more usable sound from them than Gibson's "burstbickers" (spelling deliberate) As a matter of fact, over the years, I have acquired a bunch of pups including Gibson 57's, 3 screw Super 58's and a host of others and really can't see "wasting" them on something I already have no problem with. I'm not a head banging rocker, shredder, or country picker so the S-58's suit me fine.

    At any rate, since the AS-103 isn't available there, a used AS-120 will definitely be a step above an AS-103 (except cosmetically) in playability and sound, but an AS-153 is a nicer "upgrade" over the 103.

    Here's mine... (153AA,103SM and 103NT)

    Ibanez AS dilemma-ibanez_as_153_103sm_103nt-jpg
    Regards,

    Gary

  26. #25

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    ?Gary, your spaltie is a real beauty !! Congrats...

  27. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by GNAPPI View Post
    I'm in the minority I guess, because I have two AS-103's and an AS-153 all with S-58 customs and can get more usable sound from them than Gibson's "burstbickers" (spelling deliberate) As a matter of fact, over the years, I have acquired a bunch of pups including Gibson 57's, 3 screw Super 58's and a host of others and really can't see "wasting" them on something I already have no problem with. I'm not a head banging rocker, shredder, or country picker so the S-58's suit me fine.

    At any rate, since the AS-103 isn't available there, a used AS-120 will definitely be a step above an AS-103 (except cosmetically) in playability and sound, but an AS-153 is a nicer "upgrade" over the 103.

    Here's mine... (153AA,103SM and 103NT)

    Ibanez AS dilemma-ibanez_as_153_103sm_103nt-jpg
    All of them look amazing, outstanding collection! I think my favourite would be AS103 on the right. What kind of pickups do You have on this one? They doesn't look typical.

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  28. #27

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    As people have said, check the used market for the Scofield JS10 or older vintage Ibanez 335s. If that is not really the route you want to go then I would have no problem recommending the AS73 but with upgraded pickups. The original pickups are serviceable but not great. I put in StewMac Golden Age Alnico 2 pickups. in mine and I love it. The pickups were about $40 cheaper (per pickup) than comparable Seymours. Of coursed ,used Seymours can be great deals also.

    See this thread for related discussion:

    Ibanez AS73 - SD Jazz, SD Alnico 2 or StewMac Golden Age Alnico 5s?

  29. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by slusar View Post
    All of them look amazing, outstanding collection! I think my favourite would be AS103 on the right. What kind of pickups do You have on this one? They doesn't look typical.
    I have no idea there are no maker's mark on the bottom. The PO installed them and they're a generic Gretsch clone. The PO thought they sounded good, and I do too.
    Regards,

    Gary

  30. #29

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    Today I visited local music store near by to check Ibanez AS73. Precisely it was FM GVG version with flamed maple. Very decent guitar, nothing wrong about it. However honestly lower model just felt better in my hands. I think, that matte finnish can be the reason.
    Nevertheless... There was also nice Epiphone Casino Coupe in the same store so I also took it for a test run, just from curiosity. My God, what a cool guitar. When I started playing something immidiately "clicked". Guitar felt perfect in my hands, I like the smaller size. The tone seems to be exactly what I am looking for. I had a chance to compare it head to head with Ibanez and now I strongly prefer Epiphone. It's not better but it fits my need better. Tonally they are very much different, which is logic as technically they are different as well. Fully hollow body and P90s add a lot to the sound, which is, in my opinion, much darker than Ibanez.
    BTW Do You know jazz players other than Grant Green, who played this kind of guitar (ES-330 or Casino)?

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  31. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by slusar View Post
    Today I visited local music store near by to check Ibanez AS73. Precisely it was FM GVG version with flamed maple. Very decent guitar, nothing wrong about it. However honestly lower model just felt better in my hands. I think, that matte finnish can be the reason.
    Nevertheless... There was also nice Epiphone Casino Coupe in the same store so I also took it for a test run, just from curiosity. My God, what a cool guitar. When I started playing something immidiately "clicked". Guitar felt perfect in my hands, I like the smaller size. The tone seems to be exactly what I am looking for. I had a chance to compare it head to head with Ibanez and now I strongly prefer Epiphone. It's not better but it fits my need better. Tonally they are very much different, which is logic as technically they are different as well. Fully hollow body and P90s add a lot to the sound, which is, in my opinion, much darker than Ibanez.
    BTW Do You know jazz players other than Grant Green, who played this kind of guitar (ES-330 or Casino)?

    Wys?ane z mojego ANE-LX1 przy u?yciu Tapatalka
    Emily Remler and even Jim Hall played on ES-330. I don’t know any Epiphone Casino player in jazz.
    Have I found it yet? I said that but I didn’t knew it. Did I knew that I had found it yet? No, it wasn’t what I was looking for. Nevermind. Ok.

    -Pataphysical monologue based on Cartesian theory

  32. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by slusar View Post
    Today I visited local music store near by to check Ibanez AS73. Precisely it was FM GVG version with flamed maple. Very decent guitar, nothing wrong about it. However honestly lower model just felt better in my hands. I think, that matte finnish can be the reason.
    Nevertheless... There was also nice Epiphone Casino Coupe in the same store so I also took it for a test run, just from curiosity. My God, what a cool guitar. When I started playing something immidiately "clicked". Guitar felt perfect in my hands, I like the smaller size. The tone seems to be exactly what I am looking for. I had a chance to compare it head to head with Ibanez and now I strongly prefer Epiphone. It's not better but it fits my need better. Tonally they are very much different, which is logic as technically they are different as well. Fully hollow body and P90s add a lot to the sound, which is, in my opinion, much darker than Ibanez.
    BTW Do You know jazz players other than Grant Green, who played this kind of guitar (ES-330 or Casino)?

    Wys?ane z mojego ANE-LX1 przy u?yciu Tapatalka
    Buying a new guitar is as much an emotional experience as a technical one. To me it is like meeting a new woman. Sometimes you hit it off immediately, and other times, not so much. On rare occasions, you might even fall in love when you first meet, and enter a long term relationship.

    Once you've played a number of guitars, select the instrument that excites your emotions as well as your musical senses.

  33. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by slusar View Post
    Today I visited local music store near by to check Ibanez AS73. Precisely it was FM GVG version with flamed maple. Very decent guitar, nothing wrong about it. However honestly lower model just felt better in my hands. I think, that matte finnish can be the reason.
    Nevertheless... There was also nice Epiphone Casino Coupe in the same store so I also took it for a test run, just from curiosity. My God, what a cool guitar. When I started playing something immidiately "clicked". Guitar felt perfect in my hands, I like the smaller size. The tone seems to be exactly what I am looking for. I had a chance to compare it head to head with Ibanez and now I strongly prefer Epiphone. It's not better but it fits my need better. Tonally they are very much different, which is logic as technically they are different as well. Fully hollow body and P90s add a lot to the sound, which is, in my opinion, much darker than Ibanez.
    BTW Do You know jazz players other than Grant Green, who played this kind of guitar (ES-330 or Casino)?

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    I have a casino coupe and love how it feels. But, I find the single coil hum to be particularly bad on that guitar. So bad, I only use it for playing acoustically. I cannot use it for gigging. I could replace the pickups with noiseless ones but getting those in the casino style is damned expensive.

  34. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gitfiddler View Post
    Buying a new guitar is as much an emotional experience as a technical one. To me it is like meeting a new woman. Sometimes you hit it off immediately, and other times, not so much. On rare occasions, you might even fall in love when you first meet, and enter a long term relationship.

    Once you've played a number of guitars, select the instrument that excites your emotions as well as your musical senses.
    That's beautifully said. I fully agree! Looking for a new guitar is an adventure.

    Quote Originally Posted by Roberoo View Post
    I have a casino coupe and love how it feels. But, I find the single coil hum to be particularly bad on that guitar. So bad, I only use it for playing acoustically. I cannot use it for gigging. I could replace the pickups with noiseless ones but getting those in the casino style is damned expensive.
    I haven't noticed any serious hum in a store. Maybe that's because amp was at low volume. Actually I play only at home and always in headphones, so maybe that won't be an issue in my case.

  35. #34

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    Hi again!

    I was randomly wandering over the internet and I came across guitar simillar to Casino, but also satisfying my Ibanez affection - it's Ibanez ASR70. Looks like it's fully hollow and equiped with P90's. It would be perfect I think. However it seems very very hard to find, probably discontinued long ago. I can't see even one in Poland. Do You have any experience with this guitar or maybe You know similar models of Ibanez existing? (humbuckers can be always replaced with humbucker-sized P90's)
    Ibanez AS dilemma-jpg
    Ibanez AS dilemma-jpg

  36. #35

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    Big fan of Ibanez here, and I haven't read the full thread, but one advice I can give you, is try to find a used AS (50, 80, 100 or 200), or maybe an AM series from the beginning of the 80's.
    Man, these guitars are just fabulous, and don't be fooled by the model number, they are all just phenomenal instruments.
    I have an 1980 AS50, it's a crazy quality guitar, the sound, playability.. Everything.. And you can still find them around 700 to 900€.

    I also have an 81 As200, but I prefer the AS50.

    There was a few days ago on reverb a minty As200 from 81 for 1035€!
    The shop was in England and they were OK to ship it for free in France
    I didn't pull the trigger because I already have on, but what a deal!
    I tried to call a friend of mine, pro guitarists, whose always trying to buy my AS50, but the guitar was gone in 24 hours..

    If you think of it, today's Chinese Ibanez semi hollows are very good indeed for the price
    But look what they charge for their high end Japanese models?
    You can buy exceptional Ibanez semi hollow guitars from the 80's for just a little bit more than the new entry mid level ones
    Just think of it..

  37. #36

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    Ibanez AS dilemma-img_20190627_184426-jpg


    My beloved 1980 AS50 (with Seymour Duncan Seth Lovers)

  38. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jx30510 View Post
    My beloved 1980 AS50 (with Seymour Duncan Seth Lovers)
    This one looks amazing.

  39. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by slusar View Post
    Hi again!

    I was randomly wandering over the internet and I came across guitar simillar to Casino, but also satisfying my Ibanez affection - it's Ibanez ASR70. Looks like it's fully hollow and equiped with P90's. It would be perfect I think. However it seems very very hard to find, probably discontinued long ago. I can't see even one in Poland. Do You have any experience with this guitar or maybe You know similar models of Ibanez existing? (humbuckers can be always replaced with humbucker-sized P90's)
    Ibanez AS dilemma-jpg
    Ibanez AS dilemma-jpg

    The ASR70 is discontinued indeed... I tried to find one myself, hoping it would be a nice low-budget ES-330 contender. But it was a rather low budget model. Now based on my experience with their cheapest archtop, the AF55, that doesn't have to be a bad thing in case of Ibanez: the wood, fretwork and finish of their cheap instruments is very good, as is their quality control. I was able to turn the AF55 into a great guitar with just new pickups, electronics and an ebony bridge (didn´t even have to address the frets and nut, those were perfect!).

    If you like to mod guitars (and have the tools and skills for it) then it could be very interesting to buy the cheapest AS53 and upgrade it......
    Jazz, Funk, Soul & Boogaloo: My group | Listen to Hip Jazz a Go Go! | Jazz, Soul, Blues: Eva La Voix

  40. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by Little Jay View Post
    The ASR70 is discontinued indeed... I tried to find one myself, hoping it would be a nice low-budget ES-330 contender. But it was a rather low budget model. Now based on my experience with their cheapest archtop, the AF55, that doesn't have to be a bad thing in case of Ibanez: the wood, fretwork and finish of their cheap instruments is very good, as is their quality control. I was able to turn the AF55 into a great guitar with just new pickups, electronics and an ebony bridge (didn´t even have to address the frets and nut, those were perfect!).

    If you like to mod guitars (and have the tools and skills for it) then it could be very interesting to buy the cheapest AS53 and upgrade it......
    I love to mod guitars and other guitar things, actually all my pedalboard is DIY I have some basic skills to do this kind of stuff. I am actually wondering, what would be closer to the Casino or guitar above - AS53 with humbucker sized P90's which is the same shape but semi hollow or rather something full hollow, but different shape (ex. thin body AFS model) also with P90's.

  41. #40

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    I think you will need a hollow thinline then ;-)

    I have an ES-333 and an Epiphone Sheraton II, so semis with a center block, which would be more or less comparable to the AS53.

    I really really dig my ES-125 (full hollow, P90) and soundwise my Framus Caravelle (thinline, hollow, P90-like pickups) comes much closer to the ES-125 than the ES-333 and Sheraton II (of course; it's apples and pears...).

    Maybe you should explore the Epiphone Casino or Century? If you like the hollow + P90 sound, I don't think a semi with humbuckers will satisfy. A semi with P90s might, but I have no experience with that. I do know my AF55 (hollow, humbuckers) shares the quicker decay of the tone and the little 'ploc', so if you like that, it's probably more the hollowness than the P90 that you need.
    Jazz, Funk, Soul & Boogaloo: My group | Listen to Hip Jazz a Go Go! | Jazz, Soul, Blues: Eva La Voix

  42. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by Little Jay View Post
    I think you will need a hollow thinline then ;-)

    I have an ES-333 and an Epiphone Sheraton II, so semis with a center block, which would be more or less comparable to the AS53.

    I really really dig my ES-125 (full hollow, P90) and soundwise my Framus Caravelle (thinline, hollow, P90-like pickups) comes much closer to the ES-125 than the ES-333 and Sheraton II (of course; it's apples and pears...).

    Maybe you should explore the Epiphone Casino or Century? If you like the hollow + P90 sound, I don't think a semi with humbuckers will satisfy. A semi with P90s might, but I have no experience with that. I do know my AF55 (hollow, humbuckers) shares the quicker decay of the tone and the little 'ploc', so if you like that, it's probably more the hollowness than the P90 that you need.
    Actually I love the sound and feel of Casino. That's why I started looking for something similar from Ibanez, but looks like there is nothing available now. Therefore Epiphone seems to be the best option.
    The Loar LH-302T is also nice P90 thin body hollow and matches my price range. I think actually very close to Epiphone Century that You mentioned. Just hard to find anywhere close for testing.


    Wys?ane z mojego ANE-LX1 przy u?yciu Tapatalka

  43. #42

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    Quote Originally Posted by slusar View Post
    ... Ibanez ASR70. Looks like it's fully hollow and ...
    Could be, but looking at the way the bridge is supported it probably has a block of some size inside.

  44. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by teeps View Post
    Could be, but looking at the way the bridge is supported it probably has a block of some size inside.
    Bridge in Casino and ES-330 is mounted the same way, and those are completely hollow. With those instruments, the whole top is reinforced with a kerfed spruce liner that offers enough structural integrity for the bridge studs:



    ASR70 could have a similar construction but also a more budget solution of a little block under the bridge between top and back.
    Jazz, Funk, Soul & Boogaloo: My group | Listen to Hip Jazz a Go Go! | Jazz, Soul, Blues: Eva La Voix

  45. #44

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    Thanks - amazing how each day brings testimony of how little I know :-)

  46. #45

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    Quote Originally Posted by teeps View Post
    Thanks - amazing how each day brings testimony of how little I know :-)
    Make that +1
    Jared

  47. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by teeps View Post
    Thanks - amazing how each day brings testimony of how little I know :-)
    That’s the force that drives us, right?
    Jazz, Funk, Soul & Boogaloo: My group | Listen to Hip Jazz a Go Go! | Jazz, Soul, Blues: Eva La Voix