“Significant upgrades” designed for “a completely new group of players”: Ibanez revamps its RG and S collections for NAMM 2024

Ibanez RG and S models 2024
(Image credit: Ibanez)

NAMM 2024: After announcing updates to its AZ Premium range, Ibanez has now debuted its 2024 range of RG and S Series electric guitars.

There's a fair few guitars to get through – newly set-up RG Standards, some upgraded RG GIOs and a rather exotically styled S Premium, just to name a few – but across the board, the Japanese brand has focused its attention on bold aesthetics and minor technical adjustments.

That means some fresh pickup-mounting techniques have been favored, premium tremolo units have been drafted in, and a suite of none-more-Ibanez colorways have been debuted.

Read on for a full breakdown of the latest Ibanez RG and S Series instruments.

Ibanez RG Standard

For the first time, Ibanez has given all of its RG Standard range direct-mount pickups, and has equipped a handful of its sub-$500 electric guitars with Edge-Zero II tremolos. 

Direct-mount pickups here aren't new (they've just been favored over any mounting rings for 2024) but the Edge-Zero II is, having previously been exclusive to the Premium and Prestige level offerings.

At the most basic end of the spectrum, you can find the RG421, RG421EX and RG421S models – three all-but-identical models that arrive in Mahogany Oil, Prussian Blue Metallic and Sea Shore Matte finishes.

As well as the direct-mount Quantum humbuckers, the guitars feature a meranti body, Wizard III maple neck, jatoba fretboard, jumbo frets and F106 hardtail bridge. The RG421 is the cheapest at $349, while the fancy-finished alternatives are both $379.

A fourth model, which arrives in a Cerulean Blue Burst finish, follows the above template, though drafts in a quilted maple top.

Ibanez RG470DX

Ibanez RG470DX (Image credit: Ibanez)

Moving towards the upper end of the spectrum, the Ibanez RG470DX and RG7420EX flash those Edge-Zero II tremolo bridges – a six-string edition for the former, seven-string for the latter – though otherwise loosely stick to the RG Standard template.

Ibanez RG7420EX

Ibanez RG7420EX (Image credit: Ibanez)

As such, Meranti bodies, Wizard maple necks and jumbo frets make the cut. Model-specific specs include the Black Flat finish and HH Quantum pickup layout of the seven-string, and an HSH Quantum configuration for the six-string, which is available in Tokyo Midnight, Sea Foam Green Matte, and Red Eclipse Burst with a poplar burl top.

Ibanez RG GIO

Elsewhere in the RG range, Ibanez has debuted two all-new GIO variants, which (for the first time) feature double-locking tremolos, added in an effort “to open the world of dives and trills to a completely new group of players”.

The more affordable $399 GRG320FA is available in Blue Sunburst, Red Burst, Black Sunburst, Emerald Burst and Violet Sunburst, and drafts in a basswood body, flame maple art grain top and GRG maple neck.

Other specs include a pair of Infinity R humbuckers, a purpleheart fretboard, medium frets and that Double Locking tremolo.

As for the $369 GRGR330EX, a simple Black Flat finish is strapped to the poplar body, which is otherwise joined by GIO-standard specs: purpleheart fretboard, Infinity R pickups and medium frets included.

Ibanez GRGR330EX

(Image credit: Ibanez)

Ibanez RG and S Premium

To cap things off, Ibanez has ushered in two functionally and cosmetically updated RG Premiums – as well as a new-look S Premium – to join its electric guitar arsenal.

The two RG Premium options are split into HH and HSH variants, with the former offering DiMarzio Air Norton and The Tone Zone units while the latter comes loaded with an additional DiMarzio True Velvet middle single-coil.

Both feature poplar burl tops over a basswood body, as well as ebony fingerboards, Cosmo Black hardware, jumbo stainless steel frets and Wizard III seven-piece maple/walnut neck.

The guitars differentiate on hardware and appearance: one flashes a Cosmic Blue Starburst Flat finish and has an Edge tremolo, while the other has a Mono-rail hardtail bridge and flaunts a Stained Wine Red Low Gloss colorway.

Ibanez S1070PBZ

(Image credit: Ibanez)

Last but not least, the wildly spec'd S1070PBZ features an 11-piece (yes, 11) panga panga/maple/walnut/bubinga neck, as well as a – breathe in – poplar burl/walnut/curly maple/panga panga top over a mahogany body.

The insane concoction of woods is enhanced by a Charcoal Black Burst finish, which in turn is joined by the standard DiMarzio HSH configuration, an Edge-Zero II tremolo, a rosewood fingerboard with jumbo stainless steel frets and Gotoh MG-T locking tuners.

To find out more, visit Ibanez, or head over to our NAMM 2024 hub page to keep up to date with all the latest news from this year's gear convention.

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Matt Owen

Matt is a Staff Writer, writing for Guitar World, Guitarist and Total Guitar. He has a Masters in the guitar, a degree in history, and has spent the last 16 years playing everything from blues and jazz to indie and pop. When he’s not combining his passion for writing and music during his day job, Matt records for a number of UK-based bands and songwriters as a session musician.