When looking for a quality guitar at an affordable price, it's hard to beat an Ibanez electric guitar. However, we know you want to guarantee the best bang for your buck.

Much can go wrong when choosing a guitar. Some guitars tend to go out of tune quickly. Others never sound quite right due to warping in the neck.

The materials the manufacturer makes the guitar out of can also greatly impact the sound. And of course, there are other factors to consider such as durability and comfort.

One benefit of choosing an Ibanez electric guitar is that the company has a longstanding history and reputation. They certainly know what they're doing. If you don't find what you are looking for in this selection of Ibanez Guitars, you may wanted to check out our article on the best electric guitars in general.


Ibanez: A History

Ibanez electric guitars as we know them didn't appear until the 1990s.

In fact, Ibanez started off in Japan as a guitar importing company for a bookstore. Essentially they acted as the middle-men between Spain and Japanese citizens interested in playing guitar.

By 1935, Ibanez started manufacturing their own guitars. But an Ibanez electric guitar back then would have been very similar to Spanish guitars.

In the 1960s Ibanez learned a hard lesson when they got into legal trouble for copying the design of American brands like Fender and Gibson.

As a result, they invented the Ibanez electric guitar style that we know and love.


How We Reviewed

Ibanez guitar in the music room

Image via flickr

We took the three most popular Ibanez electric guitars on Amazon and combined our knowledge of string instruments with customer reviews. Then we compared them to three guitars from other famous brands.

Because guitars on Amazon have a limited number of reviews, we also checked YouTube and other sites for information. In short, we did the research for you.

Our focus is primarily on how the guitars look, sound and feel. We will also make you aware of any glaring issues.


Ibanez Electric Guitar Review

Which Ibanez electric guitar is right for you? How does Ibanez stack up against the competition? Let's find out.

Ibanez 6 String Solid-Body Electric Guitar, Right, Transparent Black...
  • Fast, slim Maple neck
  • Beautiful quilted Maple art grain top
  • High output Infinity R pickups

The neck is maple, which is a very common choice for guitar necks. Maple gives the sound a nice bright tone with a lot of definition.


The body of this Ibanez electric guitar is made of poplar. Poplar is similar to ash and alder, all of which adds resonance to your music, making it sound fuller.


According to customers, this guitar is lightweight and has a slender neck so it easy to carry and fret.


Some customers report that the neck is heavier than the body, and feels slightly off balance.


While there is the odd customer who received a defective Ibanez GRX, most are extremely pleased with their purchase.


The GRX is easy to tune and slow to fall out of tune. There are two humbucker pickups (double-coil) and one single-coil, which customers say are bright sounding and excellent for metal.


The five-tone switch allows plenty of variation in your tone even before adding effects.



This is also the only Ibanez electric guitar in our review with a whammy bar.


Customers agree that the GRX plays better than some guitars that are twice as expensive. So it's easy to say that this Ibanez electric guitar is well worth your money.

Like the GRX, this Ibanez electric guitar has a maple neck that gives notes a brighter, happier sound. However, Ibanez makes the GRG body out of mahogany instead of Poplar.


Similar to poplar, a mahogany body adds resonance to your music. But it also emphasizes the low and mid frequencies in order to give you a more relaxed, bassy sound.


This guitar has two humbucker pickups, which ring loud and clear. They also serve to give it an even deeper, heavier sound.


The GRG is light and has the same slender neck as the GRX. It's also just as good at staying in tune.


In our opinion, this Ibanez electric guitar looks better than the GRX. The mahogany body is stained to look like walnut and appears natural and elegant.


We also noticed more customers talking about how beautiful it is, though some say it scratches easily.

Ibanez RGA42FM Elec Guitar Blue Lagoon Burst Flat
  • 2 Humbucking Pickups - Blue Lagoon Burst Flat
  • Solidbody Electric Guitar with Mahogany Body
  • Maple Top and Neck

This Ibanez electric guitar is about twice as expensive as the others, depending on where you buy. After a lot of research, we're still not convinced the extra cost is worth it, and here's why:


The Ibanez RGA42FM has a maple neck and a mahogany body, just like the Ibanez GRG, and the same pickup configuration. It also has the five-tone switch that comes standard with any Ibanez electric guitar.


Reviewers say this Ibanez electric guitar is lightweight, stays in tune and sounds fantastic. But nothing about those statements make us feel it's significantly better than the GRX or GRG.


One thing that does set the Ibanez RGA42FM apart from the others is the indent in the

body that allows easier access to the upper frets.


When paying twice as much you expect the frets to be perfectly aligned and the action to not need adjusting. However, we can't say for sure that this is the case.


The Competition

Now that we've established that every Ibanez electric guitar is high-quality, despite the price tag, let's see if the same is true for competing brands.

Fender 6 String Solid-Body Electric Guitar, Right Handed, 2-Color...
  • Squier's Affinity Series provides the best value in instrument design available today, and is the perfect choice for the...
  • 3 Single-Coil pickups provide the authentic Stratocaster tone which made Fender a household name
  • Vintage-Style Synchronized tremolo bridge provides classic Strat shimmer

The Fender Squier is one of the most famous electric guitars for beginners in existence, and with good reason.


With a maple neck and alder body, this guitar has a bright resonant sound. The three single-coil pick-ups are meant to emulate more expensive Stratocasters.


There's also a five-position switch for a wide variety of tones, the same as any Ibanez electric guitar. Believe it or not, a three-position switch is supposedly more common in this price range.


You shouldn't have a problem keeping this one in tune either. But based on reviews, the


Squire is heavier than the Ibanez guitars. It's up to you to decide if you prefer a lighter or heavier instrument.


This guitar has a whammy bar.

Yamaha Pacifica Series PAC112V Electric Guitar; Old Violin Sunburst
  • Solid Alder Body
  • Maple Bolt-On Neck
  • Rosewood Fingerboard

Like the Squier, the Pacifica has a maple neck and alder body so you can expect a similar tone. It also has the same scratchplate as the Squier and a very similar design in general.


Personally, we prefer the darker sunburst color of the Pacifica.


Instead of three single-coil pickups, this guitar has two single-coils and one humbucker.


The result is a somewhat darker sound than the Squier, but still bright when compared to an Ibanez electric guitar.


The fretboard is flatter than a typical guitar, making it easier to fret. Roundness helps when playing chords, so the flatter doesn't always mean better.


Perhaps customers rate this guitar lower on average because of its price, but from what we can tell Yamaha puts a lot of care into aligning frets properly, sanding edges, etc.


The Pacifica 112V has a whammy bar.

Epiphone Les Paul Special II Electric Guitar (Vintage Sunburst)
  • Mahogany body
  • 700T Humbucker pickups
  • Rosewood fretboard

The​ Epiphone Les Paul Special II has a rather unique when compared to the rest of our review. No one can deny the attractiveness of a Les Paul.


It has significantly more ratings than other guitars on our list and the highest percentage of five-star ratings.


With a mahogany body and two humbucker pickups, this Epiphone is comparable in sound to the Ibanez GRG. Customers describe it as versatile and particularly well suited for metal.


Many of them say that their guitar was playable right out of the box, with no fret buzzing and no adjustments needed. Making adjustments is easy for experienced players, but it's still nice to see Epiphone going the extra mile.


Les Pauls are an excellent choice for people with smaller hands because the necks tend to be thinner and the bodies smaller.


Time to Choose

Ibanez Electric Guitar

Image via flickr

Sometimes having too many superb options can make a choice that much harder. At times like this, it's important to consider what you're actually looking for.

If a whammy bar is essential, you can rule out the Epiphone Les Paul, Ibanez GRG and Ibanez RGA42FM.

However, if you're looking to play metal then those three guitars are probably your best options. When answering the question of which is the best Ibanez electric guitar, our vote is for the GRG.

Metal players who also need versatility should go for the​Epiphone Les Paul.

For those of you who are more interested in blues, jazz, rock or other genres, the Fender Squier and Yamaha Pacifica are both excellent choices.

Which affordable guitar do you think is best for your style of music? Let us know in the comments below!

Featured Image by PIRO4D from Pixabay

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