2010s Ibanez IVJ100S Dreadnought Guitar

Why post such a cheapie? Someone out there might need to know about it. When guitars like this come in for work I always feel a sense of deja vu because I've seen numerous almost-the-same guitars in for light setups in the past.

The short of it is that this was a $150 instrument when it was made. How is that even possible? Specs say it has a solid top but I'm not sure -- there are big hairline cracks on the top of the guitar in at least the finish but they don't appear to go through to the inside. That suggests it's ply.

In any case, it needed some braces repaired and then a quick setup. It's clearly lived an unhappy, neglected life -- there are finish chips here and there, the aforementioned hairline finish cracks, and plenty of scuffs and scratches.

When these instruments are dialed-in, though, they can play just as well as a fancy guitar. Does the sound compare, though, at all? Nah. For my ears I'd actually prefer to be playing a beat-up old '70s ply Yamaha than this, but this guitar does have a much better neck.

It does sound just fine, though, and if I had to sing a couple hours for a show with it in a pinch I wouldn't be unhappy at all. I mean -- let's admit it -- cheap imports have gone leaps and bounds over what they were like even 15-20 years ago. The truss rods on these work and the fretting is actually decent and the intonation is pretty dang good.