IBANEZ AW200ECEVV – quick test


Performing a good acoustic guitar is not a simple matter. Real art of violin making can not compromise. Wood, its selection, secret ways of combining elements, all this affects the final effect in the form of a beautiful and phenomenally sounding instrument.

Unfortunately, in our music stores it is not so easy to hit this type of instrument. They reign there rather in medium or low prices, suitable for semi-professional applications, for learning or even for fun. For professional applications, however, we have slightly higher requirements that Ibanez guitars usually meet without reservation. At first glance, the model tested today also looks very promising.


The instrument’s top plate is made of solid spruce, and the back and sides are a flaming maple. The body has a cutaway allowing better access to high positions. The grille is made of mahogany, the fingerboard is quite nice rosewood. The instrument has a stitching, around the resonance opening we have a decorative mother-of-pearl rosette. All at first sight very decently made and makes a good impression, if not for one aesthetic dissonance: the top plate is glued from two pieces of wood and they are definitely not matched in terms of color. It is known – it is a living wood – there are no two identical pieces, but you could have applied a bit more, especially that in really serious guitars I did not notice such things.

A pleasant surprise, however, is the use of the excellent Grover keys in the instrument and the branded electric system of the Fishman company, undoubtedly a tycoon in the field of sounding the acoustic guitar. It consists of a piezoelectric transducer and a Prefix Plus-T preamp mounted in the side plate cutout. I will write more about this set a bit later. The bridge, like the fingerboard, is rosewood, the guitar saddle is made of material with the mysterious symbol Ivorex II. Judging by the name, it is imitation ivory. Interestingly, to improve the outfit, on the B string, compensation was used on the saddle. The instrument tunes to a good level, which is also thanks to the strings (D’Addario from the EXP series). By the way, let’s also decipher the meaning of VV letters in its name. It means nothing more than the type of finish of the instrument, ie Vintage Violin High Gloss.

This time I decided to change the procedure a bit and run a real, so-called. blind test. The case was so easy that I really saw the guitar model for the first time in my life and I did not have any information about it. Do not kid yourself, knowledge of the price of the instrument or any other opinion may very seriously (though probably unknowingly) affect his assessment. I did not have this problem here – Ibanez AW 200ECE was a real tabula rasa for me. The sound of the instrument is characterized by a balanced band. The sound is typically acoustic, very nice to the ear. Importantly, the instrument is relatively loud. The bottom is quite a lot, although its clarity and elasticity may leave some unsatisfactory. The treble clefs sound quite round, the top is not “shooting”, maybe it lacks a bit of glow, which appears in the highest quality guitars sounding like the proverbial bells. Interestingly, the B2 string is slightly suppressed, the E1 string sounds much better. I would describe the character of the guitar as a clear guitar, which will work above all in the chord game. For solo applications, the top is a bit too “paper”.

Here is a small remark: comparing and describing each instrument makes sense only if we assume some criteria for this description. In other words, we are bowing to the immortal problem of the price of the commodity and its quality. Without knowing (so far) its price, I compare this instrument to the top-shelf models, trying to maintain the highest quality criteria.

The Ibanez griffin is quite comfortable, the thresholds nabito correctly, the strings are set on the usual level for acoustic instruments. Unfortunately, the laws of physics can not be overcome – the string has to be vibrated, which means that the acoustic guitar will never be as comfortable as the average electric model. In determining the generally acoustic Ibanez sound, let me use the terminology used in the automotive industry: the Ibanez model AW200ECEVV is a typical middle class. This is probably quite good, considering that in this segment of the market we have Volkswagen Passat, Toyota Avensis … I’m sorry, I’ve driven on. Let’s get back to the merits. For the needs of the Ibanez live game, a piezoelectric Fishman Acoustic Matrix pickup and a preamp of the same company called Prefix Plus-T were provided. Piezo like this piezo, it just has to be. With all its disadvantages and advantages, the most important thing is that only this type of transducer gives us a chance to establish a balanced fight with the normally playing rhythm section. Of course, it’s best when apart from the pi element

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