Find of the Week – Presented by Reverb.com – 1986 Ibanez X-ING IMG MIDI Guitar

Reverb.com was founded with a simple mission: to create the best place for musicians to buy and sell the gear they use to create the music they love. It’s kind of like an online Craigslist marketplace, but without flaky sellers, long drives to the wrong address and no PayPal protection – and it’s all music gear! My credit card is in serious trouble.

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Ibanez MIDI Guitar

Ibanez has a long and storied history, but what most consider their “golden age” was the 80’s and early 90’s. They were putting out some seriously well made (if sometimes garish) axes for the gunslingers of the day. Between Paul Gilbert, Steve Vai, and Joe Satriani, they were selling like hotcakes. But apparently that left room for some skunkworks weirdness, a mad scientist R&D project that led to this.

This guitar is an Ibanez X-ING IMG MIDI guitar. According to www.joness.com, a synth guitar website,

The Ibanez IMG2010, like all the Roland guitar synthesizers from the 1980s, was actually built at the same Fujigen factory that made many of the best Japanese guitars of that era. The designers of the IMG2010, the last of the mass-produced Roland compatible controllers, benefitted from studying the weaknesses and strengths of the Roland models.

The IMG2010 a incorporates graphite reinforced neck for stability, playability, and pitch accuracy. The fretboard is ebony, the fretboard of choice in all of the top-of-the-line synthesizer controllers, such as the Roland G-808 or the Godin guitars. The fragile Roland ribbon connector was replaced by a wired harness. The tricky vibrato touch pads were replaced by a knob. The IMG2010 adds a virtual whammy bar mentioned in the Roland service manuals but never implemented by Roland, and Ibanez engineers redesigned the gain structure of the internal trim pots. Proper setup of the trim pots is required for accurate velocity tracking.

They suspect that only somewhere around 2000 of them were made, and since they’re about 30 years old, that makes them pretty rare. But I happened upon one as I was trolling around Reverb.com, and it can be yours for only $900.

I dig the retro-futurism of its looks, and I like midi guitars because I can’t play keyboard. So if you’re like me, head on over to the seller’s page on Reverb.com and snag it before I do!

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As Editor-in-Chief of Gear Gods, I've been feeding your sick instrument fetishism and trying unsuccessfully to hide my own since 2013. I studied music on both coasts (Berklee and SSU) and now I'm just trying to put my degree to some use. That's a music degree, not an English one. I'm sure you noticed.