SMG Review: Ibanez FRM100TR Fireman Paul Gilbert Signature Electric Guitar

Ibanez FRM100TR Fireman Paul Gilbert Signature Electric Guitar

Ibanez is a Japanese guitar company owned by Hoshino Gakki and known for offering musicians in the rock/metal genre a guitar that offers all the necessary options to shred. The modern era of Ibanez guitars began in 1957 when Hoshino Gakki began importing Salvador Ibáñez guitars from Spain. Over the years, the Ibanez popularity has risen and gained a following amongst seasoned musicians. Did you know that early Japanese built guitars are considered as good as, if not superior to US built axes of the same period?

OFF THE RACK

Paul Gilbert is one of the most iconic guitarists in the world. With his uncanny ability to shred circles around most players, Sir Gilbert has once again put his stamp on a new Ibanez line of guitars. His signature models deliver a sweet combination of shred playability while still giving an amazing warm tone.

The Ibanez FRM100TR was inspired by the many hours of playing and live performance Paul Gilbert had done with the original Ibanez Fireman model. This version of the model is unique with its body shape, featuring a distinctive reverse Iceman body outline. The Fireman’s mahogany body feels surprisingly comfortable and doesn’t hinder playability in any way. The FRM100TR has a specific layout to keep the volume knob location in Paul’s favorite spot, which is a similar feature to his other signature models. The guitar features a pickup selector switch and an added tone control for maximum control. The Fireman Signature model is different than the previous Paul Gilbert signature series guitars in that it’s neck is thicker and fatter for a classic type feel (22mm at the 1st fret and 24mm at the 12th fret). The three piece mahogany/maple/mahogany neck offers the player a fat crisp sound with a solid grip for comfortable playability. The FRM100TR features DiMarzio® pickups chosen by Paul himself. The bridge and neck positions feature DiMarzio® Injectors™, while the middle features a DiMarzio® Area ’67™. Hum-cancelling construction eliminates the noise but retains the single-coil tone.

THE SPECS

  • Neck Material: 3pc Mahogany/ Maple Neck
  • Type: FRM100TR
  • Body: Mahogany body
  • Frets: Medium frets
  • Fingerboard: Rosewood
  • Inlay: Pearl dot inlay
  • Bridge: Tight Tune Bridge
  • Neck PU: DiMarzio® Injector™
  • Neck Middle PU: DiMarzio® Area ’67™

 THE LOW DOWN

When you break it down, this is a great guitar with excellent features and it is a performance ready rocker. It is a comfortable axe with a tight warm tone perfect for shredding or rhythm playing. Although the Fireman is a signature style guitar, that does not mean it’s not for you. On the contrary, this is a loaded guitar with flair and serious street cred! The pickups are super quiet and are quite warm yet when cranked can pump out crisp semi bright tones you need to touch on darker forms of music. The neck may be a little on the thick side for beginning players, but seasoned players will dig the thicker neck. If all of this already wasn’t enough, the location of the volume and tone knobs are easily accessible and the added tone knob allows you to fine tune your tone to perfection.

Pros – Great tone, sustain is amazing, comfortable. Fully loaded,  Dimarzio pickups.

Cons – N/A

Street Price – $800- $1100

Till next week, thanks for reading and keep on shredding.

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  • abegail

    Awesome guitar..I want to learn how to play guitar..thanks for sharing..

  • Shane

    Can’t wait to try one of these out. I had an early PG1 for a long time and loved it. Is this a MIJ or korean model? Thanks for the review.

  • Sergi marcial

    Hi Shane, I think it’s a chinesse one, but for me it’s not a problem, i dream every night with this guitar!

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