Ibanez Blazer 300 (BL300) Reviews 5

Having previously owned two other models from the same range, I bought the instrument secondhand from a private seller in about 1994 for 130 British Sterling - about $235 US at today's rate. (Guitars usually cost a lot more in England than in the USA)

It has the most excellent percussive tone for both clean and distorted sounds. The neck pickup in particular really sings. The 21-fret maple neck has a fairly chubby profile and lowish frets, but is comfortable to play with a fast smooth action. My best buddy, who's a very experienced pro player, reckons it's the best-sounding of my many guitars.

It's heavy! After a couple of hours on a gig the weight of the instrument is very noticeable and the slab body makes its presence known to my ribs. The bullet-type truss rod adjuster gets a bit in the way of behind-the-nut bends. The bridge-tailpiece design makes installing new strings just a tad fiddly. I'm not overwhelmed with the headstock shape. None of these factors is terribly serious - this is nevertheless a great guitar.

The quality of build and fittings is first-class, the vaguely Strat-shaped slab body being of mahogany and the hardtail bridge of brass, with a black scratch-plate having three plain black single coil pickups. Controls are one volume, one tone, a 5-way selector and unusually a phase switch which gives nice unusual thin choppy tones in the in-between positions. The bolt-on maple neck is comfortably plump and has 21 lowish frets on a fairly flat radius. Trus-rod adjustment is by a bullet-type nut similar to a 3-bolt Fender. Machine-heads are mini-Schaller-type, probably Gotoh copies.

This is my #2 working instrument, but if I could only have one guitar, I'd be more than happy for it to be this one. Made by Fuji Gen-Gakki, who produced the Japanese Fenders too, it's a thoroughly professional instrument that I'd recommend to anyone as a viable Strat alternative.

Tony Young rated this unit 5 on 2004-02-27.

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