Why do we really like the AZ2402 Prestige and AZ242F Premium !?
Today was a great day to test once again this promising range of guitars. I played a prototype once and some time ago did a first test and communicated about it.
First of all : the roasted maple necks with sober inlay, the locking tuners, the Gotoh T-series tremolo, new contour body in alder or basswood with maple top. It’s all super, great.
The sleek ( slightly thicker then what we usually get from Ibanez )neck, jumbo frets, the titanium saddles on the Prestige, …
The complete guitar total is higher than the sum of all its parts.
All guitars tested at Groove Street 98 have great attack and resonance, no weak out of phase type of frequencies, great presence. Nice character.
It is not easy to get the guitar out of tune as well. Very stable indeed.
After testing the Hyperion pickups with the new switching system once more, just itself, it was time to put on some of my favourite tunes and jam along, trying to find the same sound as what I heard in a song.
Here are the sounds I particularly was impressed with :
Bridge pickup, pos 5, full humbucker, toggle pointing to the rear : great humbucker sound, great for some Led Zeppelin, AC/DC or contemporary Lukather sounds. Coupled with the right drive, you got some RATM going on or Van Halen, going through the Victory VX Kraken ...
Neck pickup, pos 1, full humbucker, , toggle pointing to the rear : great for clean and semi-clean The Doors, Aerosmith or Cash
Bridge pickup, pos 2, split, toggle pointing to the neck : pure single coil strat sound, no matter the 500k potentiometers, for that funky RHCP, Deep Purple or semi-Hendrix bite.
Neck pickup, pos 4, split, , toggle pointing to the neck : the inside coil of the neck humbucker solo, Hendrix and Jeff Beck are not really far away; John Mayer neither.
Neck pickup, pos 1, power tap humbucker, , toggle pointing to the neck : a little less powerful then the full neck humbucker, one coil simply has less turns and power, splitting the neck coil with the switch, Knopfler, John Mayer, Landau ?
Once you get to know the guitar switching better, it is hard changing to other guitars again. It all makes sense. Bravo to everybody who contributed to the design of the AZ !
Finally I tried some very nice super-strats in comparisons, a/b : Music Man Luke III, Charvel Guthrie Govan, Suhr, …
The AZ can’t be blown out of the water, despite the price difference !
And the price ? Go check our website !