My one-of-a-kind Ibanez 6-string

Discussion in 'Standard Guitars' started by nicomortem, May 22, 2016.

  1. nicomortem

    nicomortem SS.org Regular

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    This is my Ibanez. It's an S540ex with an S320 neck. I installed new dimarzio pickups, and X2N in the bridge and a Fast Track II in the neck position, each are wired to a coil tap switch. I leveled the frets, and installed ablolne inlays at the 12th fret to replace the plain white plastic that came on the neck of the S320. I was never a fan of the claw mark inlay that came with the original neck, but I got the guitar used for a great price (at the music store) and figured I could replace the neck, which I also bought used (online). I noticed that the tremolo was black and chrome, looked into replacing the chrome parts with black but determined it would be in my best interest to leave it as-is. So I bought all new chrome hardware and chrome Gotoh tuners, and I combined the black hardware that came with the guitar with the chrome hardware, so that the hardware on the guitar was both black and chrome mixed, and I went with a "black and chrome" theme, which was perfect given the chrome "Ibanez" logo on the headstock, so I went with it. I use this guitar for everything, I can get both P90 and strat-type single coil sounds from the neck pickup, I get high gain from the bridge pickup but without going active, and I can get something closer to a PAF type humbucker tone when I back off on the volume just a tad. It also sounds very stratty and clean in split mode. I put in a new, higher quality 3-way switch, a no-load pot for the tone knob, an orange drop capacitor and I did all the electronic work on this guitar myself and I do all the setups and repairs too, so I truly consider this "my" guitar. It's not my first Ibanez but it is my first S series guitar, and I did extensive research on the product line after taking the guitar home for the first time. I was very interested to learn about the development of the S series, and many of the choices I made in modifying and customizing this guitar were influenced by what I learned about the Saber line and about Ibanez in general. I was especially impressed to learn about the tremolo, this is way more advanced than the Floyd Rose, plus this one has ball bearing joints instead of the usual post/knife edge system. I also think it's pretty cool, how skinny the thing is. I am very proud of this instrument even though it's just a used guitar from a few years back that wasn't particularly expensive or popular, I feel like I have turned it into something special.

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  2. OmegaSlayer

    OmegaSlayer SS.org Regular

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    S is a lovely lovely series and very versatile.
    I picked one up to be modded too, but I'm still lagging behind the work I must do on it.
    What is this orange capacitator thing?
     
  3. Ebart

    Ebart SS.org Regular

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    Curious about the capacitor as well...
     
  4. Ordacleaphobia

    Ordacleaphobia Shameless Contrarian

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    Nice job my friend :yesway:
    I was never a fan of most of the S-series specific inlays either, the claws or the waves, etc, but they sure are killer players. Love how many Ibanez parts are interchangeable like that.

    You liking the X2N in the bridge? Is that thing just like a gain monster or what?
     
  5. tylerpond05

    tylerpond05 Mormon Metalhead

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    Congrats!!! I love my Prestige S1220. I also love the Radius/JS body. I wish they would bring back that shape on a more budget friendly guitar.
     
  6. TheTrooper

    TheTrooper SS.org Regular

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    Congrats dude, the project looks awesome and really well thought :metal:
     
  7. nicomortem

    nicomortem SS.org Regular

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    Hey guys, thanks for the feedback and likes! I am sorry it took me so long to reply *insert lame excuse for not logging into the forum often enough*
    I will try to answer these questions as best as I can.

    So the capacitor is an Orange Drop, you can find them on Stew Mac and eBay, and there are basically 2 kinds that are used for guitars, 0.47uf for single coils and .022uf for humbuckers. As I understand it, the capacitor is the thing that makes your tone knob work and they usually supply guitars with a standard capacitor, and these are and upgrade. From the Stew Mac site:

    "In the 1960s, capacitors began to be developed using more modern materials like Mylar. During this time, Sprague Electric introduced the 'Orange Drop' capacitor, and it was quickly adopted by many industries due to its robustness and performance."

    I have been slowly upgrading all my guitars with these things, it's a cheap and easy upgrade that seems to really improve the performance of my tone controls.

    For the question about my pickup, I do like the X2N, it really seems to "slam" when I hit power chords, and when I split the coils, it gives me a very authentic and clean sounding single coil tone. It sounds terrible when played clean though, in humbucking mode. At least in my opinion anyways.
     

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