Ibanez FLATV1 Review & Prices

Compare
Ibanez FLATV1 Review
Had it
Have it
Want it
FIND IT ON:
Sweetwater logo
  • From Ibanez's 2021 FLATV series
  • Josh Smith Signature
  • Made in Japan
  • 6 strings
  • 25.5"'' scale
  • 10" Fretboard Radius
  • Ash body
  • 1pc Roasted Maple neck
  • Roasted Maple fretboard
  • Bridge pickup: Seymour Duncan FLAT5 (Single Coil/Passive)
  • Neck pickup: Seymour Duncan FLAT5 (Single Coil/Passive)
  • 1 volume and 1 tone Dome knobs
  • 3-way Switch
  • Gotoh F1803 bridge
  • FLATV Bolt-On neck
  • 21 Medium frets
  • Gotoh machine heads tuners
  • Weight between 6.45lbs (2.9kgs) and 7.55lbs (3.4kgs)
  • Compare Specs >
  • From Ibanez's 2021 FLATV series
  • Josh Smith Signature
  • Made in Japan
  • 6 strings
  • 25.5"'' scale
  • 10" Fretboard Radius
  • Ash body
  • 1pc Roasted Maple neck
  • Roasted Maple fretboard
  • Bridge pickup: Seymour Duncan FLAT5 (Single Coil/Passive)
  • Neck pickup: Seymour Duncan FLAT5 (Single Coil/Passive)
  • 1 volume and 1 tone Dome knobs
  • 3-way Switch
  • Gotoh F1803 bridge
  • FLATV Bolt-On neck
  • 21 Medium frets
  • Gotoh machine heads tuners
  • Weight between 6.45lbs (2.9kgs) and 7.55lbs (3.4kgs)
  • Compare Specs >

Our Scores and Tone Evaluation

Playability 73
Sound 73
Build quality 72
Value for money 63
Overall Score 73
Tone Evaluation
  • Heavy Metal
  • Hard Rock
  • Jazz
  • Blues
  • Funk
  • Country
Strengths & Weaknesses
Ibanez FLATV1
  • Made in Japan
  • Expensive Wood
  • Bone Nut
  • Top Brand Pickups
  • Luminescent Inlay
  • Cheap Fret Wire (NS)
  • No Locking Tuners
  • No Neck-Through Build
  • No Push Knob or Extra Switch Option
  • No Weight Relief
  • No Tremolo
  • No Compound Radius Fretboard
  • No 21:1 Tuner Ratio
  • No Strap Lock

Videos

No Talking...Just Tones | Ibanez Josh Smith FLATV1 AZS - Black
My Guitar Story: Josh Smith's new Ibanez signature, the Flat V1 | Guitar.com
The Captain Meets Josh Smith - First Look at His NEW Ibanez FlatV1 Signature Guitar!
Josh Smith Demos His Signature Ibanez Guitar and Morgan Amplifier
IBANEZ FLATV1 Josh Smith Signature Demo The Guitar Shop
More Videos

Price: is the Ibanez FLATV1 a Good Deal?

Its average competitor's price is $2300, which means that the Ibanez FLATV1 costs around 9% more than the competition. It might be due to it having additional features, but know that you can find cheaper similar alternatives. This takes into account all guitars of the same category in our database with 6 strings and Fixed bridge that are made in Japan.

These are affiliate links. We'll earn a small fee if you purchase after clicking. We are not a store, we're not owned, nor are we related to these retailers in any way beyond receiving a fee from qualifying purchases. We'll always show you the best prices we find regardless of the compensation we receive. These prices are searched for automatically and are prone to error. Make sure you're buying the right product after clicking on a link from our site. We are not liable if you buy the wrong product after following these links.

Your feedback

Not all guitars are created equal, and there are many important things they won't tell you about the guitar you're buying. That's why it's important to have different opinions. Here's what our visitors who have played this guitar say. If you've played it before, help others by voting for your experience below.

Weight

Vote
Heavy
0
Slightly heavy
0
Lightweight
0
Very lightweight
0

Tuning stability

Vote
Won't stay in tune
0
Sightly unstable
0
Not bad
0
Holds tune well
0
Won't get out of tune
0

Neck speed (thickness)

Vote
Chunky
0
Slightly chunky
0
Balanced
0
Fast
0
Herman Li fast
0

Neck access to high frets

Vote
Very Hard
0
Hard
0
Normal
0
Easy
0
Very Easy
0

Neck profile shape

Vote
Baseball / U
0
V
0
Asymmetrical
0
C
0
D
0

Fret edges

Vote
Very sharp
0
Slightly sharp
0
Smooth
0

Pickups noise

Vote
Noiseless
0
Slightly Noisy
0
Noisy
0

Pickups power

Vote
Clean
0
Slightly Hot
0
Hot
0

Explore All Ibanez Guitars >

Is The Ibanez FLATV1 Easy to Play?

The Ibanez FLATV1 meets 4 out of our 8 criteria items for beginner friendliness, which means that it's not bad for beginners, but it could be better. This takes into account the type of frets, scale length, nut width, bridge type, fretboard radius, and neck profile to determine the easiest combination for new players to get used to.

Ibanez FLATV1
New Player Friendliness
  • Comfortable shape
  • Easy-to-use bridge
  • Tall frets
  • Wide nut
  • Locking tuners
  • Comfortable fretboard
  • Short scale
  • Comfortable neck

Hand Size Comfortability

After taking into account the neck profile, scale size, fretboard radius, and nut width, we can conclude that the Ibanez FLATV1's construction favors people with relatively big hands.

Nevertheless, this comes down in the end to personal preference. Make sure you test this guitar—or another one with similar characteristics—before buying.

Big Hands
Small Hands

How Lightweight is it?

We found that the Ibanez FLATV1 weighs between 6.45lbs (2.9kgs) and 7.55lbs (3.4kgs). This was recorded from some online retailers that publish the weight of the guitars they sell.

Scale Length

Scale length is the distance the strings will span between the bridge and the nut. It can tell you a lot about the overall playability and tone of the instrument. A longer scale length means longer distance between frets, brighter tone and more string tension—which means lower action, but more difficult bending of the strings.

Here's the Ibanez FLATV1's 25.5" scale length compared to other common sizes:

Ibanez FLATV1 Scale Length Comparison
Ibanez FLATV1's scale length (at the top) compared to other popular sizes

This is the same scale length used in Stratocaster guitars, and it's one of the main reasons they have such a bright sound. It's considered a long scale when compared to most non-baritone guitars.

Since the distance between bridge and nut is relatively long, you'll need to give the strings more tension to get them in tune. This higher tension will allow for a couple of things. First, you can get a lower action (get the strings closer to the fretboard) because the strings won't 'wiggle' too much when pluck and won't cause fret buzz. This can allow you to use lower tunings without increasing your string gauge, and it will make it easier to press down the strings fast.

However, the frets will also have a wider separation between each other, which can make it harder to play, especially if you got small hands. The higher tension will also make the strings feel stiffer, so bending will require more strength.

More guitars with the same scale length:

Neck Profile

Ibanez FLATV1 Neck Profile
Ibanez FLATV1's neck profile

The neck profile tells you the thickness (neck depth) and shape in cross section. Every difference will completely change the feeling and comfortability of the neck. This is a highly subjective thing, but most players indeed prefer certain types of necks (like Cs and Ds) because they feel nice in most hands.

The Ibanez FLATV1's neck thickness is approximately 0.87'' (22.1mm) at the first fret, and 0.96'' (24.4mm) at the twelfth.

These measurements were taken either from the official Ibanez website, or, in case this information wasn't provided, by researching multiple online marketplaces and forums where owners of this model have posted their measurements.

It has a V type neck. This is a vintage type of neck that is not so common nowadays. Some people like it because they can rest their hand easily while letting their thumb hang over the edge of the fretboard. It's thicker than most modern necks, so it's great for playing chords but not so much for shredding.

More guitars for different hand sizes

Fretboard Radius

When it comes to fingerboard radius, personal preference will dictate which one is better for you. However, most people seem to agree that a more curved (lower) radius will make it easier to play chords while a less curved (higher) radius is better for soloing and bending.

The Ibanez FLATV1 has a 10" fingerboard radius. Here's an image comparing this guitar's fretboard radius to other popular choices:

Ibanez FLATV1 Fretboard Radius Comparison with Fender Stratocaster and Gibson Les Paul
Ibanez FLATV1's fretboard radius compared to other guitars

This is slightly flatter than the typical modern Stratocaster, but not by a lot. This radius will make it comfortable to play chords without muting strings accidentally. However, when compared to Strats, the extra .5 inches radius will make it slightly more comfortable to play solos without sacrificing too much chord playability.

Compound radius fingerboards give the best of both worlds. Unfortunately, the Ibanez FLATV1 has the same radius across the board.

More guitars with the same fretboard radius:

Playability compared to main competitors

Ibanez FLATV1
This model
25.5'' Scale Length
V Neck Profile
1.654'' Nut Width
10'' Fretboard Radius
25.5'' Scale Length
C Neck Profile
1.654'' Nut Width
Compound Fretboard Radius
25.5'' Scale Length
C Neck Profile
1.654'' Nut Width
Compound Fretboard Radius
25.5'' Scale Length
C Neck Profile
1.654'' Nut Width
12'' Fretboard Radius
25.5'' Scale Length
C Neck Profile
1.654'' Nut Width
12'' Fretboard Radius

Nut Width

Ibanez FLATV1 Nut Width
Ibanez FLATV1 Nut Width

The Ibanez FLATV1 has a nut width of 42mm (1.654''). This is narrower than the typical 43mm (1 11/16") width. This means that this guitar will have a narrower string separation at the nut, which will affect your fretting hand.

If you are a player with big hands, you might find it difficult to play chords without muting strings. However, this is good for players who have smaller hands, as it will allow them to reach each string much easier at the nut.

Frets

The Ibanez FLATV1 has 21 frets. Even though 24 frets has become really popular, there's still a good reason to get fewer frets; the pickup at the neck position will be further away from the bridge. This makes the neck pickup achieve a warmer tone. You might want this if you're playing Jazz or similar genres.

However, if you don't care about the warmer neck pickup, more frets will always be better. It's always nice to have the option to play higher notes if you want to.

It comes with nickel silver frets, so they won't last as long as stainless steel frets. If you use your instrument a lot, you might need to replace the frets after a few years. But this is unlikely as most people change instruments before this happens.

More guitars with the same amount of frets:

Fret Size

Ibanez FLATV1 Fret Size Comparison
Ibanez FLATV1's fret size (in orange) compared to other popular sizes

Finally, let's talk about fret size. Some people prefer tall frets because it's easier to press the strings and perform bends since there's less friction against the fretboard. On the other hand, some people like shorter frets because they like to touch the fretboard when playing, or because they got heavy hands and tend to press too much on the string and alter the of the note pitch accidently.

The Ibanez FLATV1's frets are Medium size. With medium frets, you can feel the fretboard more than with jumbo frets, but it's still easier to press the strings cleanly than with small frets; notes might change their pitch just slightly if you press hard on the fret. Also, if you need to do some fret leveling after years of playing, you'll have some room to sand them down without having to replace them.

More guitars with the same type of frets:

Playability Score

Bending & Vibrato Ease 70
Chord Playability 95
Solo Playability 55
Playability 73

Does the Ibanez FLATV1 Sound Good? Tone Analysis

Wood will have little influence in the final tone of an electric guitar. Instead, the hardware, especially the pickups, will be the most important thing to look at. Bur first, let's see the quality of the wood.

Wood Used in the Ibanez FLATV1

Ash wood pattern used for guitar building
Ash Body
Roasted Maple wood pattern used for guitar building
Roasted Maple Neck, Fretboard

Ash Body: The most popular Ash wood for guitars is swamp Ash. It has a really light color with beautiful patterns, which makes it perfect for a natural-looking finish. It's not as lightweight as Alder, but also not as heavy as Mahogany. It's known for producing a bright tone with solid mids and lows.

Roasted Maple Neck and Fretboard: Similar to simple Maple, but even stronger, darker, and more stable to temperature changes. This is thanks to the treatment process that consists in using high temperatures to drain the water, sugar, and resins from the wood.

More guitars made with the same wood:

Pickups

This guitar comes with pickups from one of the top brands: Seymour Duncan. So you can expect well built pickups with great sound that shouldn't need an upgrade anytime soon.

These are passive pickups, so you can expect a moderade level of hot output instead of the overwhelming output that distinguises active pickups in metal.

The Ibanez FLATV1's configuration is SS. This is the classic Telecaster configuration and it's used mainly for playing clean or with low-gain distortion. It doesn't give you as much versatility as a Strat SSS configuration, but you might like the cleaner look of a guitar body with fewer pickups.

Versatility

It comes with the popular 3-way switch that is present in most guitars. For more versatility, guitarists tend to prefer a 5-way switch, although it all depends on what you want to use your guitar for.

Unfortunately, it doesn't come with more options for coil split or coil tapping. This makes it less versatile than some competitors.

Diagram

Ibanez FLATV1 pickups switch and push knobs diagram
Ibanez FLATV1's switch options

What music genre is the Ibanez FLATV1 good for?

As a 6 strings, Solid Body guitar with SS configuration and Passive pickups, we'd recommend it for genres like Country or similar. However, you can use almost any guitar for any genre. This is just the typical type of music for this kind of guitar.

Sound Score

Pickups 100
Sustain 65
Versatility 55
Tuning Stability 70
Sound 73

How well is the Ibanez FLATV1 Built?

Where is the Ibanez FLATV1 Made?

Knowing where the guitar is produced is a good way to know how well it's built. Some manufacturing countries are known for having higher quality standards. For example, most expensive guitars are made in the US or Japan, but there are some exceptionally great countries—like South Korea—that are building a good reputation.

The Ibanez FLATV1 is made in Japan. You should expect a high-quality guitar with excellent quality control. It can be compared to guitars made in the US, which is why they're also expensive.

More guitars made in Japan

Bridge

Gotoh F1803: The advantage of fixed bridges is that they don't require any kind of set-up. This makes it extremely easy when changing strings because you don't need to adjust anything besides tuning the guitar. Also, the fact that the bridge is directly attached to the body will help to increase sustain. The disadvantage is the lack of versatility since you can't create the same vibrato effects as with tremolo bridges.

More guitars with the same type of bridge:

Nut Material

Another important thing to analyze is the nut material, as it's one of the most important aspects that can affect the sound and playability of your guitar. A well-cut nut will make sure the guitar stays in tune and will make it more comfortable to play.

In this case, the Ibanez FLATV1 has a Bone nut. This material is one of the highest quality you can get. It provides excellent sustain and tune stability if cut well. The only disadvantage is that it's an organic material, so it's not consistent. Two different bone nuts, even if made from the same bone, will probably sound slightly different. However, bear in mind that this is only relevant when playing open strings.

More guitars with the same nut material:

Neck Joint

The neck joint is the part where the neck of the guitar meets the body. There are three main techniques to attach both parts together: Set-In, Bolt-On and Neck-Through. The latter two provide different advantages, although neck-throughs are the most expensive.

This guitar has a Bolt-On neck joint. Even though this type of neck was looked down upon for a long time, nowadays bolt-on necks are well built and provide just as much sustain as any other join method. First of all, it's cheap to make because it consists of simply 4 bolts that attach the neck to the body. And you can travel with the guitar more easily, swap out the neck if you damage it, or upgrade to a more comfortable neck later on.

More guitars with the same build:

Build Quality Score

Quality of materials 66
Features 55
Quality Control 95
Build Quality 72

Most Popular Comparisons With The Ibanez FLATV1

Ibanez FLATV1 Specs

General
Brand: Ibanez
Year: 2021
Configuration: SS
Strings: 6
Made in: Japan
Series: FLATV
Colors: Black
Left-Handed Version: No
Body
Type: Solid Body
Body Material: Ash
Bridge: Gotoh F1803
Neck
Neck Joint: Bolt-On
Tuners: Gotoh machine heads
Fretboard: Roasted Maple
Neck Material: 1pc Roasted Maple
Decoration: Black Dot
Scale Size: 25.5"
Shape: FLATV
Thickness: 1st Fret: 0.87'' (22.1mm) - 12th Fret: 0.96'' (24.4mm)
Frets: 21 Medium
Fretboard Radius: 10"
Nut: Bone
Nut Width: 42mm (1.654'')
Electronics
Switch: 3 Way
Knobs: Dome
Volume Controls: 1
Tone Controls: 1
Bridge Pickup: Seymour Duncan FLAT5 (Single Coil / Passive)
Neck Pickup: Seymour Duncan FLAT5 (Single Coil / Passive)

User Reviews of the Ibanez FLATV1

Help others by sharing your opinion about this guitar. Note: to avoid spam, your review will be submitted for approval before appearing here.

(and earn points!), or just write anonymously below
Your Rating: