Guitar Review: The Ibanez Herman Li Signature EGEN18

This week’s review is sure to impress the inner shredder in you as we profile and dissect the Ibanez Herman Li Signature EGEN18 electric guitar!

The Ibanez Herman Li Signature EGEN18 is every soloists dream!

The EGEN18 guitar has a mahogany body that is super thin and ultra light weight. The EGEN body is modeled after the Ibanez S series thin body guitars with some modern improvements. The EGEN has a flamed maple top that is beautiful and eye catching in every way. The Mahogany body, although thin, does not produce a thin sound at all. In fact, it has just the opposite! Surprisingly, the EGEN produces a warm tone like that of guitars twice as thick.

The EGEN uses a custom shop 5-piece maple/walnut Prestige neck that is super fast and extremely comfortable. The EGEN neck is equipped with 24 jumbo frets lending to its superb feel and action. The 21st through 24th frets are scalloped for added grip on the higher frets as well as increased fret travel. The Prestige neck houses a rosewood fretboard common to most Ibanez guitars, as well as abalone oval inlays all the way up the neck that lends to its sleek look.

The Ibanez EGEN has the new Ibanez Edge Zero Bridge that uses new technology for greater string tension and incredible tuning accuracy. The Edge Zero Bridge is flush mounted with the body for a smooth sleek look. The Edge Zero Bridge utilizes the double locking system keeping you in tune for days to come.

The EGEN comes with three custom DiMarzio HLM Herman Li signature pickups. The DiMarzio pickups are linked to a 5-way selector switch and a master volume and tone pot. The EGEN has coil taping capabilities by simply pulling up on the volume pot for 9 different tone possibilities. The pickups are flush mounted to the body for a worry free pick zone. Gold tuners and hardware accentuate the stunning transparent finish. The special hand grip on the top horn gives the axe a unique feature only found on the EGEN. The EGEN also has scalloped lower horn that gives increased fret travel like no other Ibanez made.

SMG Staff Writer Nick Arrietta, “The EGEN has everything I could ever ask for in a guitar.”

My overall opinion on this masterpiece is nearly euphoric. This is truly a guitarist’s dream guitar. From its super thin body and superb playability to its ultra-comfort and style, all of that aside, its HUGE sound will rival any guitar out there today. The tonal options that this guitar can create are amazing!

Normally guitars like this are intended for a small area of music such as Rock, Metal and punk. The EGEN is straight-up outside the box tonally as I was able to fine tune it to suit all styles of music. The beautiful clean tones can range from extra warm to bright with just a flick of a switch and a small turn of a knob. The EGEN neck feels like the early Ibanez Wizard. I could not find a bad spot on the neck. Everywhere I played felt comfortable, with no wrist contorting at all. Put through heavy gain and a cranked volume makes guitar is as heavy as they come. The sheer magnitude of power that exudes from this instrument will bring a tear to your eye. I have to admit that I have finally found my dream Axe! The price tag is up there hovering at $2,699 but I am comfortable saying that it’s worth every penny. Pick one up for yourself and experience the awesome power of the Ibanez EGEN18.

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

Nick Arrietta is a staff writer at SMG. Nick is a professional Music teacher from California and has been playing the Guitar for 24 years. Along with teaching music he is a touring guitarist, studio musician and songwriter. Email:

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