SZ Prestige series deals with deluxe guitars with double-cut bodies, humbucking pickups and 22-fret fingerboards. These models are oriented more towards rock than metal, though it`s not a completely foreign language to them. SZ1220 is the introductory model into the SZ Prestige series and it comes with a solid, double-cut body made of mahogany base with flamed maple top. Top panel is carved and bound in creme binding. Transparent Black Flat is the only color scheme available for this model and it`s finished in satin. Bridge is a simple tune-o-matic with strings running through the body behind it. Pickups are open coil humbuckers with a standard controls unit. One-piece mahogany neck is set in and topped with a 22-fret rosewood fingerboard.
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The sz1220 is the only Japanese built sz guitar and was made for just one year for the European market, making it fairly scarce. There are also hardly any on the market, because no one in their right mind would sell this thing having played it! Fantastic guitar. My first serious guitar, bought second hand with the EMG 81/85 pair loaded in, which just complete this instrument. Playability is fantastic, due to the excellent neck and the Gibraltar bridge system, which is much better than the bridge and tailpiece on my Gibson LP studio. I can't speak for the stock pickups, but the EMG 81/85 are fantastic, and the guitar sounds better and is more versatile than any other I've owned. This includes a Japanese Jackson with Seymour Duncan PUs, Gibson with dirty fingers and an ibanez RG2570 prestige with dimarzio PUs. Sustain for days, as you would expect from full mahogany construction and active PUs. The guitar is also very light, as the body is weight relieved, making this a super comfy guitar to play all night. The tuners are gotoh as for most prestige ibanez guitars, and are excellent. I didn't play the thing for 6 months whilst at university, and I came back to it being perfectly in tune, which is insane. The look and finish are to my taste - there are no fretboard markers, which may be an issue for about 5 minutes, but it takes no time to get used to. The maple top looks understated and killer with the transparent brown finish. I currently own more than 10 guitars, including an RG prestige, a Gibson LP, an E series Fender strat and a fantastic Japanese Jackson, but I'd pick this one over them all in a heartbeat. Possibly the best £300 I've ever spent!
Ibanez SZ1220 4.15 out of 5 based on 2 ratings
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