There are two things I look for in guitars. One, I prefer seven strings above all else, and two, I look for reliable brands. That’s how I found myself reviewing the Ibanez RGIR37BE today. It’s a true modern metal axe, and Ibanez wants you to know that.

Ibanez reintroduced the Iron Label brand this year with all new RGD, RGA, and S models. These guitars have boutique looks, and they are quickly becoming favorites for everyone that tries them. My first experience with the Iron Label line wasn’t that great, and the same thing can be said for many other people. However, the new Iron Label series guitars are a whole new story.

Let’s check out the specs of the RGIR37BE below:


-Mahogany Body

-Black Flat Finish with white binding

-Edge Zero II-7 tremolo

-EMG 707 pickups

-AANJ neck joint

– Maple/Bubinga bolt on neck

-Wizard-7 neck profile

-Blank rosewood hardware

-Jumbo frets

-1xVolume, Killswitch, 2 way blade toggle

-Black hardware

-25.5” scale

The Iron Label line is approached with caution by many people, and understandably so. When the Iron Label guitars first came out, many players shunned them due to poor quality control and errors that Ibanez guitars usually never have (in my case very poor quality fretboard wood, it was dried out and cracked in some places).

Over the years, Ibanez has continued to improve the brand, knowing that they can turn it around and turn these into highly desirable guitars. With creative approaches to their classic shapes, such as the Iron Label RGD and even more models, the Iron Label line now gives players boutique looking guitars at an affordable price.

The RGIR37BE comes in at $899.99, a very fair price.


EMG 707s seem to be standard issue for modern metal actives, and they compliment this guitar appropriately. I’m personally not a fan of active pickups, but the metal tone I can get from them is pretty awesome. The pickups are definitely a bit more on the warm side, and they give me all the chug-power I need for Meshuggah and Nevermore style riffs.

As expected, the bridge pickup is very aggressive. It’s really good at providing clarity at low tunings. Chords are clear and articulate in, which provide me a better experience while playing. If you can’t hear everything while you play, what’s the point?!

The 707 in the neck position is equally great. It provides awesome sustain and great smooth lead tones. I personally like having a very thick and “creamy” lead tone, and these are great for that!

I’m happy with my experience with the 707s, but players who are used to playing passives such as myself might be a bit turned off to the pickups. But have no fear, these get the job done pretty damn well!

Build Quality:

The quality of Iron Label guitars have been steadily improving every year. This guitar is an example of that growth in quality!

There are barely any imperfections in the finish. I saw a couple of spots where the finish bled into the binding a tiny bit, but this isn’t surprising from an imported guitar. I also found a couple of very light scratches on the body, but this isn’t a surprise either. Luckily, it’s nothing that affects playability!

The Edge II-7 bridge has a very nice low profile that makes it super comfy to use and play! It works flawlessly and snaps everything back in tune with out an issue!

The locking nut was secure and the clamps were nice and tight, no surprise there!

The only noticeable issue was the killswitch. It appeared to loosen a bit during shipping, so I had to tighten it as much as I could with my fingers, which we know is only a temporary solution with no tools available.

Final Verdict:

I love this guitar. The 25.5” inch scale may not be the best for playing super low tunings, but seeing as I play in B standard, it feels really comfortable and intonated correctly with good tension. A fast neck, powerful pickups, and a sleek stealthy finish is all I can ask for! At $899, I’d definitely recommend it as a reliable metal workhorse!

If you wanna read more about how scale length affects tension, we have a guide to string gauge that can help with that!


If you liked this article, check out more reviews! We are also authorized Ibanez dealers and can order any model they offer in any price range for you.

This article was written by Mike Azernov, our editor located in New York.


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