Taming an Ibanez RGA

Marky Mark

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I have an Ibanez RGA42FM, great guitar, and as a beginner, its been incredibly easy to play, mostly owing to that Wizard III neck. I really love it ergonomically, but find the tone really harsh. I know it's a metal guitar, but I'd like to tone it down a bit. The stock Ibanez pickups are great for just metal shredding, but I also like classic rock and blues. I don't want to sell it, it's SO comfortable to play for extended periods.

I'm considering swapping the pickups, maybe keep a hot bridge but swap the neck for a jazz or alnico II. I realize it's never going to be a Les Paul in terms of 'creamy' tone, but just want to take some edge off and make it a little more versatile. I was thinking a JB bridge with an alnico 2 neck and maybe coil split wiring would make for a better all-around instrument.

Thoughts? Recs?

Thanks......
 

Dolebludger

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I’m not familiar with this guitar model, so pics would help. Does it have a tone control or two? If so, roll off some highs and see what you have.
 

LP1865

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Swap out the neck magnet for an A3 and the bridge for an A5. it's worked for some people
 

Thundermtn

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JB isn't what you're after.

First thing is to lower your pickups if they aren't hard mounted. Change your strings to something nickel wound as well.

Then if it's still too hot then think about swapping. If I was going to stick with SD I'd be looking at A2P's or an A2P with a Pearly Gates in the neck.
 

ErictheRed

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Check to see what value pots and caps you have, it might be simpler than swapping pickups. But yeah, Alnico 2 or even 4 will soften things a bit. Seymour Duncan Jazz is Alnico 5, but would probably work fine since the neck position is naturally much warmer.

I really don't think that you want a JB in the bridge, but something medium output might work better than low output since it's longer scale than a Les Paul. Something like a Saturday Night Special or Alnico 2 Custom Custom is where I'd look if I were going to use Seymour Duncan, personally.
 

Kamen_Kaiju

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I put Seymour Duncan pickups in mine.

Ibanez makes nice guitars, but the stock pickups in all but the most expensive ones leave something to be desired.

20210219_203348.jpg
 

neoclassical

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I'm not sure what pups will work with meranti wood.

I put Seymour Duncan pickups in mine.

Ibanez makes nice guitars, but the stock pickups in all but the most expensive ones leave something to be desired.

View attachment 520688
I've replaced all the pups (as well as electronics) in every Ibanez I've owned (even a prestige). Imho you can't go wrong with a Duncan 59' Custom 5, or maybe a JB in the bridge. BKP Holy diver does the JB thing better than the JB. For the neck Alnico pro II, 59', and Jazz are all great.
 

Kamen_Kaiju

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yeah, SD makes my favorite pickups. For 'mass produced' they're pretty exceptional pickups.
 

Marky Mark

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While I"m here - what about the wiring.?

I don't find the stock Ibanez 5 way particularly useful (Not a huge difference among the 5 options), was thinking that a three way switch with coil tapping pots would offer a nice variety of tones.
 

LP1865

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While I"m here - what about the wiring.?

I don't find the stock Ibanez 5 way particularly useful (Not a huge difference among the 5 options), was thinking that a three way switch with coil tapping pots would offer a nice variety of tones.
Would a 3 way switch fit in snugly into that 5 way pocket?
 

Marky Mark

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Would a 3 way switch fit in snugly into that 5 way pocket?
Not sure. At first glance (famous last words!) it looks like a Tele-style switch would be an easy swap. I'm building an offset Tele right now, so when I get the harness, I 'll open up the RGA and take a look before I make a mess of things.
 


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