Ibanez AF55 Review

Ibanez Introduction

This article will provide you with all the necessary information about the Ibanez AF55 guitar. If you are interested in buying the Ibanez AF55 or you just want to know more about the guitar, you should keep on reading.

Product Description

The Ibanez AF55 Artcore Hollowbody electric guitar delivers a quality instrument in a stripped-down, aggressive-looking package. The full-hollow Sapele body of the AF55 offers you a large, round tone with plenty of woody warmth that’s well-suited for jazz, blues, older country styles, and rock. The flat finish and lack of extra ornamentation give the guitar a no-nonsense look that will be right at home on stage with a loud rock band. Ibanez’s Artcore series delivers great quality instruments, such as this AF55, at an attainable price.

Price

The prices can vary depending on the website and country you are buying her from, but mainly the price stays between 200 and 300 euros. You can check the latest offer here!

Pros 

  • Lightweight but packs a lot of tones to experiment with
  • Sounds great both as an acoustic and electric guitar
  • High-quality sound for a moderately proceed guitar

Cons

  • Case not included

Is it Worth it?

This guitar is worth much more than its price point, an incredible deal.

In-Depth Review of the above articles

Benefits:

Identifiable and versatile Hollowbody tone

The Sapele top, back, and sides bring out clarity and note definition in an otherwise warm-sounding design. The deep body ensures you’ll hear plenty of woody resonance. Working in conjunction with the wood and design, the uncovered Ibanez Infinity humbucking pickups have enough output to perform well in many genres, but are subtle enough to bring out the clarity and nuance of your playing.

Straightforward aesthetics

The first thing you’ll notice when seeing the AF55 is the no-nonsense appeal of its design. Sweetwater guitarists agree that the flat finish begs for the instrument to be played hard, but it also has a quiet elegance. The uncovered Infinity pickups continue the aggressive aura of the instrument and allow for more attack to come through when you play. Dot inlays on the fretboard, minimal chrome hardware, and single-ply binding round out the aesthetics.

Specifications:

Neck Type 

Af Artcore / Nyatoh / Set-in neck

Top/Back/Side

Lined top / Lined back / Linden sides

Fretboard

Bound Wault fretboard / White dot inlay

Fret

Medium frets

Number of frets 

20

Bridge 

Gibraltar Performer bridge

String space 

10.5 mm

Tailpiece

VT06 teilpiece 

Neck Pickup

Infinity R (H) neck pickup (Passive/Ceramic)

Bridge Pickup

Infinity R (H) bridge pickup (Passive/Ceramic)

Factory tuning 

1E, 2B, 3G, 4D, 5A, 6E

String gauge 

.010/.013/.017/.030/.042/.052

Hardware color

Chrome

NECK Dimensions

 

Scale:

628 mm

a: Width

43 mm at NUT

b: Width

56.3 mm at 20F

c: Thickness

21 mm at 1F

d: Thickness 

24 mm at 9F

Radius 

305 mmR

BODY Dimensions 

a: Length

19 ½”

b: Width 

15 ¾”

c: Max Depth

3 ⅝” 

DESCRIPTION

Guitar Body Diagram

A: Length of the body

B: Maximum width of the body

C: Maximum depth of the body

Quality

Body & neck

The instrument utilizes a strong mahogany body, mixed up with a mahogany neck, a classic rosewood fingerboard, a set of 22 frets, white dot fret inlays, and two lovely F-holes.

The use of mahogany brings in a booming sonic foundation with plenty of resonance. The instrument features a classy Gibson-like headstock and a smoky finish that perfectly matches the sonic attack. 

Hardware

We’re looking at a floating bridge, a set of standard tuning pegs, and no pickguard. These components may not be the instrument’s strongest points, but they do a solid job in keeping the AF55 in proper shape. While some users have reported minor tuning issues, a proper intonation is almost always secured. 

Electronics

The pickups certainly give the instrument a healthy load of charm. We’re dealing with a classic pair of humbuckers, but they’re a bit on the hot side, securing plenty of versatility and tonal freedom, but also a constant presence of the “hotness” factor. The pickups are connected to a single set of control knobs for Tone and Volume adjustments. Also included in the mix is a standard three-way pickup selector.

Sound

Yes, Ibanez is a manufacturer typically associated with the realm of hard n’ heavy music, but this fella still has a sonic foundation deeply rooted in the world of jazz. Bright, sharp, articulate, and resonant – those are the keywords.

However, the use of booming mahogany wood and slightly hotter pickups opened this fella up for musical endeavours outside of the jazz domain, going from harder blues all the way to alternative rock. This is great, although there are some players who are looking for a full-on jazz guitar and simply won’t appreciate the extra gain punch.

Additional Features:

  • Hollowbody guitar with a rock ‘n’ roll look
  • Straightforward aesthetics look great on any stage
  • Uncovered Infinity pickups deliver a warm but clear tone
  • Minimal hardware keeps clean lines uninterrupted
  • The single-ply binding adds an air of elegance
  • Gibraltar Performer bridge

The Gibraltar Performer bridge provides rich sustain and tuning stability. The low-positioned saddles promise comfortable playability.

Warranty

Ibanez provides a warranty with a period of one (1) year from the date of the original retail purchase.

Who Is It Best For?

Combining brightness with a more beefy vibe, this six-string is a valid choice for a modern jazz player looking for a great mixture of versatility and traditional values. 

The Guitar utilizes some of the well-known pros of Ibanez guitars and sets them up in more blues- and jazz-driven environments. 

What Do People Say About It?

You can find some feedback and guitar reviews on Amazon, Sweetwater and Thomann. Overall the Ibanez AF55 has been rated on average 4.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon Review and also with the same rating on Thomann. Due to the poor amount of reviews on Amazon, we have provided you with Thomann reviews.

Thomann Reviews #1“As for the AF55 what can I say other than astounding value for the really low price charged by Thomann. After the obligatory fret polishing, fingerboard oiling, very minor adjustments to the neck, and intonation the instrument plays beautifully, no buzzes or extraneous noises, and the sound from the stock pick-ups is pure jazz. If I have any negative comment it is regarding the stock tuners, which while they keep the instrument in tune, are unpleasant to use…so much free play. This is a low priced stripped-down guitar that has everything it needs, and nothing it doesn’t. So I will replace the tuners eventually, and stick on some flat wound strings…This instrument looks great, feels great and holds its own with others costing four or 5 times more. Oh, and the recommended ‘Rockbag 335’ style gig bag fits like a glove.”

Thomann Reviews #2“I bought this because it was cheap enough to take a gamble. I’m very glad I did.

Stock tuners: I found them to be a bit on the cheap side. I was having tuning issues. I decided to change them for locking tuners which helped loads. Stock tuners acceptable for home, but wouldn’t depend on them for a gig.

Pickups: I got a bit confused with this. I was told it had ACH pickups, it doesn’t. Mine says ‘hot ‘n’ nasty’ on the back of them. Regardless of that, they are non staggered flat poles with ceramic magnets. Not exactly quality, but for home volumes, I was pleasantly surprised. Slightly scooped sounding but good clarity (I’m always on the neck). I did change them out for something else but didn’t like that. Also tried changing the magnet on the stock pickup to an Alnico V or II magnets

Jury still out on that one. If you are after distorted noises I think they’re fine.

Body/neck: really good! Frets and neck were great. Really pleased. Can’t fault it. The body also a work of art, with no faults at all. Loved the burst on it. Great worn look. Not a fan of the matt finish. I compound polished the whole body and buffed it to shine. Gleams now with a satin/gloss finish. You can see the grain much better.

Overall: great guitar for any time you need an archtop. It is not my main axe currently but when I found a pickup I’m happy with it certainly might be!”

Youtube reviews

YouTube Review #1 – The Ibanez AF55 Artcore Hollowbody Electric Guitar sets the standard for Ibanez full-hollow body design. Their long-standing partnership with jazz greats such as George Benson and Pat Metheny has resulted in pioneering advancements in the world of hollow-body guitar building. The AF55 with its choice selection of tonewoods, high-quality appointments, and superb electronics continues that tradition of daring design and passion for tone.

Youtube Review #2 – White Christmas played on an Ibanez AF55 guitar.

The Verdict: Is it Worth It?

If you want to get the best of both worlds, here’s a guitar that sounds great both as an acoustic guitar and an electric guitar. The Ibanez Artcore AF55 doesn’t just have a beautiful body, it has an amazing fretboard that guarantees easy playability. 

If you like this article and found the provided information useful, you might want to check out our other reviews at AalbergAudio.com