WOW! NAMM kicks off to a big, big start with this behemoth, the Ibanez RG9 9-string. Now, it’s only a prototype at this stage, but Ibanez hopes to make it a production model and to have them on the streets in the fourth quarter of 2013. Just in time for Christmas, you guys! I really hope that pans out. Of course it depends on if there’s interest from attendees and dealers at NAMM, but as far as I’ve seen, the response has been pretty huge.
It has Lace Deathbar humbuckers (with coil splits): very high-definition, punchy-sounding pickups that are great for djent. It’s a 28″-scale instrument, tuned (low to high) C#, F#, B, E, A, D, G, B, E and the playability is amazing. Note that the bridge is a fully tooled-up piece rather than something assembled out of a few pieces, which is how Ibanez dipped their toe in the water with the initial 8-string prototypes, and as Rich at Ibanez Rules says, they wouldn’t have spent the beans on developing this part if they didn’t plan to do something with it.
Sure, Strictly7 don’t strictly make 7-string guitars – they also do 6, 8 and 9-string models – but whatever the string count, their guitars are incredible. Various production models are available with passive DiMarzio and Bare Knuckle or active Seymour Duncan and EMG pickups. Check out their custom gallery here, but make sure you check out their production models too – including their Ola Englund signature model (read Ola’s blog here).