Have been spending time with these two. Ibanez AZ2402 (pink) & RG550 (yellow), both Japanese but worlds apart.
RG550. I’ve been conditioned by the RG since the start, not this one but my RG560. The thin & flat neck profile stuck with me for a good while & everything else was just not my thing. Other neck profiles just make the instrument difficult to play for me. That happened for about 7 years or so till I bought my first Fender which was a Telecaster. It was a real change in terms of playing feel but I persevered.
AZ2402. This was something unexpected when it comes to Ibanez; that thick, round neck was it. It’s the most non-Ibanez feel ever, a total departure. However, unlike Fender & it’s other derivatives, Ibanez did something to the neck, a roasted treatment of sort so it gave the neck a very inviting feel despite moving away from its roots. Also, for a brand name with a steep inclinations for DiMarzio pickups, the Seymour Duncans were a very bold move. I was at Swee Lee to just test the guitar but it sort of grew on me. I did not buy the initial batch of AZs that came in but it happened much later. Pink was not priority, the instrument passed my inspection at the store & it clicked right from the start.
Sometimes we are deceived by familiarity; we tend to stick with what works & reject the rest. Any compromise & it brings us down in so many ways. Life has taught me to adapt. That triggered my purchase of other guitar brands which have no obligations to replicate the Ibanez profile in every way. Job experience also taught me to work out of my comfort zone to bring out my best performance & that translated to guitar playing. In my case, the other guitars prepared me to play my Ibanez better. Those times that I struggled with Fender & Gibson, when I returned to Ibanez, it makes playing a breeze. If it’s within your means, do invest in guitars which are not your thing. These are the implements that will bring the other side of your playing that might prove to be that refreshing change you are waiting for.

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