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  • Next Up: New M-1000 needs a level!

    I got this guitar several months ago, and as I fixed up my other guitars, now this one is the worst playing.

    Straighten the neck and check with a fret rocker.... There are multiple high spots, the worst are frets 2 and 8.

    I knew frets 2 and 8 were high, was thinking about spot repair, but there are actually multiple frets with issue.

    The frets themselves are new and untouched, completely shiny without any file marks. I guess K guitars at the $1000 price point don't get leveled any more, or this one played well enough that they didn't bother. Prior to this M1000, I bought an Indonesion M400 (only $450 on sale.. usually a $650 guitar), which had a rudimentary level and only needed a fret polish.

    Its interesting to me where they are cutting costs. Ibanez guitars in this price range are all made in Indonesia (except the reissue RGs), and I suspect they all get full fret treatment. K labor is probably too expensive to level unless absolutely necessary. I don't like this, although I probably wouldn't have bought the guitar for $1500.

    Truthfully, if they are shipping K guitars without fret work, Indonesian guitars may be a better value if they come out of the box ready to play.

    Click image for larger version

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  • #2
    They don't cut cost; they transfer the cost to you as a matter of fact cause you paid a thousand bucks for an Korean guitar. All of new Korean (Schecters, PRS) I found are around 500 in dollar equivalent, brand new, ready to play.

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    • #3
      These are made in same factory as Schecter. Isn't is a reasonable assumption that all the guitars of that grade are not leveled, unless they really need it?

      Before getting this guitar, I bought (and returned) a Korean BC Rich. That was a 1500 guitar, and it wasn't leveled either!

      Of two K guitars in the 1200-1500 range that I bought this year, neither was leveled. Would be surprised if current day schecters are.

      I don't under stand the 500 comment.


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      • #4
        Asian guitars are priced more expensive once they hit the western hemisphere.

        Are you sure the frets aren't leveled, or are you being too demanding? My Schecters need no fret leveling, seriously, come with playable action. Probably yours are too damn high but not 'unleveled' cause they are brand new? So it's impossible to shoot for shred-ready action without string buzz?

        I think price should not be the determining factor of the quality at the customer's end. Expensive guitars don't mean higher quality. It's that the manufacturers make more money (fatter profit margin), compensating for less profit generated by the cheap ones (not that they lose money from those either).

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        • #5
          I bought this guitar because I like the way it looks.

          Its playable, but if you look at the picture, the fret rocker shows quite a few high spots. It can be a good bit better.

          Its my understanding that if the neck wood is leveled properly and the frets are installed well, new guitars may not "need" a level. I think they are relying upon a level fretboard and uniform frets without actually leveling. 99% of the time the guitar will be playable. Some % of the time it might be shred worthy.

          This is not a $500 guitar on thomann.

          https://m.thomannmusic.com/esp_ltd_m...rch=1609813492
          Top-L
          Super Toneologist
          Last edited by Top-L; 01-05-2021, 01:17 PM.

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          • #6
            I decided to spot level the individual frets that were high, and it turned out great! Now its a shred monster.

            Click image for larger version

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            • #7
              Indonesia are doing their best. Mexico, Korea, they were all super shaky once upon a time.

              That's one of the better looking upper priced Ibanez guitars. The 2021 line so far looks awful.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Lucius Paisley View Post
                Indonesia are doing their best. Mexico, Korea, they were all super shaky once upon a time.

                That's one of the better looking upper priced Ibanez guitars. The 2021 line so far looks awful.

                Its a LTD.

                I agree, the Ibanez designers have gone in a direction I'm not fond of. Most of their guitars look like they are for hipster metalheads.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Top-L View Post
                  Its a LTD.
                  And it's gorgeous. And I don't normally go for "shred" guitars per se. Nice.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Top-L View Post


                    Its a LTD.

                    I agree, the Ibanez designers have gone in a direction I'm not fond of. Most of their guitars look like they are for hipster metalheads.
                    Oops.

                    Makes me glad they're making less lefty guitars so I won't ever feel forced to buy one.

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