REVIEW: Ibanez Artist ARZ800

Ibanez may not be particularly known for their single-cut guitars – the iconic nature of designs like the RG and Iceman series tend to selfishly draw the eyes towards them during a casual flip of the catalog – but the company has made it’s fair share of such beauties over the years. In fact, in the 70s Ibanez made copies of a particularly well known single-cut that were so accurate and revered that they got slapped with threats of legal action and had to stop. The Artist offers occasional hints at this history but the series is always undergoing refinement and it’s now very much it’s own family of guitars, not trying to reflect any particular design by another company but not shying away from those sexy curves either.

One aspect that particularly separates the ARZ800 from most other single-cuts is its scale length: 25 inches, halfway between the 24.75″ of traditional single-cuts and the 25.5″ of so-called ‘superstrats.’ This gives the strings a slightly looser feel but not so much that you’ll get weird pitch drift if you pick super-hard. It also makes the guitar a little better-suited to lower tunings, such as Drop D or Drop C.

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