Ibanez PN1 Review & Prices

Ibanez PN1 Review
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  • From Ibanez's 2017 PF series
  • Made in China
  • 6 strings
  • 24.4"'' scale
  • 9.843" Fretboard Radius
  • Spruce top
  • Nyatoh back
  • Nyatoh sides
  • Nyatoh neck
  • Nandu Wood fretboard
  • Bridge pickup: (/)
  • Nandu Wood bridge
  • Acoustic PN Set neck
  • 18 Medium frets
  • Ibanez tuners
  • Compare Specs >

Our Scores and Tone Evaluation

Playability 78
Sound 74
Build quality 57
Value for money 85
Overall Score 70
Tone Evaluation
  • Heavy Metal
  • Hard Rock
  • Jazz
  • Blues
  • Funk
  • Country
Strengths & Weaknesses
Ibanez PN1
  • Cheap Fret Wire (NS)
  • No Locking Tuners
  • Made in China
  • No Expensive Woods
  • No High-Quality Nut
  • No Top Brand Pickups
  • No Electronics
  • Low-Quality Material Saddle
  • Laminated Top Wood
  • Laminated Side Wood
  • Laminated Back Wood
  • No Compound Radius Fretboard
  • No 21:1 Tuner Ratio
  • No Strap Lock

Price Overview

Its average competitor's price is $440, which means that the Ibanez PN1 is around 61% cheaper than the competition. This takes into account all instruments of the same category in our database with 6 strings and Fixed bridge that are made in China.

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Your feedback

Not all instruments are created equally. That's why it's important to have different opinions. Here's what our users who have played this instrument say. If you've played it before, help others by voting below!

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Is it Easy to Play?

The Ibanez PN1 meets 7 out of our 8 criteria items for beginner friendliness, which means that it's a good guitar to start with as a complete beginner. 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.

New Player Friendliness

Ibanez PN1
  • Comfortable shape
  • Easy-to-use bridge
  • Comfortable fretboard
  • Tall frets
  • Narrow nut
  • Short scale
  • Comfortable neck
  • Soft Strings
  • Locking tuners

Hand Size Comfortability

After taking into account the neck profile, scale size, fretboard radius, and nut width, we can conclude that the Ibanez PN1's construction favors people with relatively small 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

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 PN1's 24.4" scale length compared to other common sizes:

Ibanez PN1 Scale Length Comparison
Ibanez PN1's scale length (at the top) compared to other popular sizes

This is a slightly shorter scale than the more common short scale of 24.75". It's a good choice for beginners that want to get an easier-to-play guitar without it being much different than a normal scale guitar.

Neck Profile

Ibanez PN1 Neck Profile
Ibanez PN1'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 PN1's neck thickness is approximately 0.787'' (20mm) at the first fret, and 0.827'' (21mm) 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 C type neck. C-shaped necks like this have been the most popular for the last years. The reason is that they feel good in most hands. It's generally a thin neck that doesn't get in your way when playing fast, but that also has enough mass to give your hands a comfortable grip for chords if they aren't too big.

Thin necks like this make it easier to move your hand across the neck and it helps when playing fast solos, especially if you like to leave your thumb free while playing high on the fretboard. However, thinner necks are also weaker and will need adjustment more often than a thicker neck.

More 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 PN1 has a 9.843" fingerboard radius.

Here's an image comparing this fretboard radius to other popular choices:

Ibanez PN1 Fretboard Radius Comparison with Fender Stratocaster and Gibson Les Paul
Ibanez PN1's fretboard radius compared to others

This is a radius that makes it comfortable to play chords, but that's just slightly flatter than the typical Strat fingerboard. It's still not as flat as a Les Paul, so it might not be as comfortable for soloing. The feel sits right in between a Strat and a Les Paul, although it feels more like the former.

Compound radius fingerboards give the best of both worlds. Unfortunately, the Ibanez PN1 has the same radius across the board.

More with the same fretboard radius:

Playability compared to main competitors

Ibanez PN1
This model
24.4'' Scale Length
C Neck Profile
1.654'' Nut Width
9.843'' Fretboard Radius
24.75'' Scale Length
C Neck Profile
1.772'' Nut Width
15.748'' Fretboard Radius
25.3'' Scale Length
C Neck Profile
1.693'' Nut Width
15.75'' Fretboard Radius
23.625'' Scale Length
C Neck Profile
1.693'' Nut Width
15.75'' Fretboard Radius
24.016'' Scale Length
D Neck Profile
1.75'' Nut Width
14.96'' Fretboard Radius

Nut Width

Ibanez PN1 Nut Width
Ibanez PN1 Nut Width

The Ibanez PN1 has a nut width of 42mm (1.654''). This is considered a narrow width for a 6-string guitar. 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 more easily at the nut.

Frets

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 with the same amount of frets:

Fret Size

Ibanez PN1 Fret Size Comparison
Ibanez PN1'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 PN1'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.

Playability Score

Bending & Vibrato Ease 80
Chord Playability 95
Solo Playability 60
Playability 78

Tone Analysis

The type of wood and even the shape of the body will have a lot of influence in the final tone of an acoustic guitar. Here's we'll talk about what kind of tone you can expect from its specs.

Wood

Spruce wood pattern used for guitar building
Spruce Top
Nyatoh wood pattern used for guitar building
Nyatoh Back, Sides, Neck

Spruce Top: This wood has a light color with tight grain patterns. It's very stiff but relatively light. It's known for producing a well-rounded tone with a broad dynamic range.

Nyatoh Back, Sides and Neck: It's a wood type found mainly in Indonesia. It's fairly hard and durable and is becoming popular for building guitars because it isn't expensive.

More made with the same wood:

Pickups

This acoustic guitar doesn't come with preamp pickups, so you won't be able to connect it directly to an amplifier. Instead, you'll need to use an external microphone.

Sound Score

Sustain 60
Versatility 70
Tuning Stability 65
Sound 74

Build Quality Analysis

Country of Origin

Knowing where the instrument 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 instruments 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 PN1 is made in China. So you can expect lower build quality when compared to others made in Korea, Japan or the United States. Guitars made in this country are meant for mass production, which translates into less attention to detail and quality control. This doesn't mean the product is made poorly at all. Chinese products have a bad reputation since long ago, but they've definitely improved a lot the last few years.

Still, remember that we're taking about Ibanez here, which is a brand with good renown. They know how to use cheap labor in this country without sacrificing too much quality. So you shouldn't end up receiving a useless or ugly instrument.

Bridge

Nandu Wood: 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.

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 it stays in tune and will make it more comfortable to play.

In this case, the Ibanez PN1 has a Plastic nut. This is a low-quality nut that you might want to consider upgrading soon. Bone and TUSQ nuts are the best for guitars with a fixed or simple tremolo bridge.

Build Quality Score

Quality of materials 51
Features 65
Quality Control 55
Build Quality 57

All Specs

Ibanez PN1
General
Brand: Ibanez
Year: 2017
Configuration:
Strings: 6
Made in: China
Series: PF
Colors:
Left-Handed Version: No
Body
Type: Hollowbody
Body Material: Spruce
Bridge: Nandu Wood
Neck
Neck Joint: Set
Tuners: Ibanez
Fretboard: Nandu Wood
Neck Material: Nyatoh
Decoration: White dot inlay
Scale Size: 24.4"
Shape: Acoustic PN
Thickness: 1st Fret: 0.787'' (20mm) - 12th Fret: 0.827'' (21mm)
Frets: 18 Medium
Fretboard Radius: 9.843"
Nut: Plastic
Nut Width: 42mm (1.654'')
Electronics
Switch: 0 Way
Knobs:
Volume Controls: 0
Tone Controls: 0
Bridge Pickup: ( / )

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