Ibanez AR Series AR420 - Violin Sunburst

Solidbody Electric Guitar with Mahogany Body, Flame Maple Top, 3-pc Maple Neck, Rosewood Fingerboard, and 2 Humbucking Pickups - Violin Sunburst
Ibanez AR Series AR420 - Violin Sunburst image 1
Ibanez AR Series AR420 - Violin Sunburst image 1
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Ibanez AR Series AR420 - Violin Sunburst
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Unique Look, with a Wide Tonal Range

It's a good thing the Ibanez AR420 solidbody electric guitar has a unique look, otherwise you might make assumptions about how it plays and sounds. Part of Ibanez's Artist Series, the AR420 has a feel and playability that will appeal to a wide range of players of all types, and the versatile tone, combined with quality construction and tonewoods, adds up to a value-packed guitar. You get rich tone, sustain, and a classy look from a mahogany body topped with maple, while two Super 58 Custom humbuckers with Tri-sound electronics give the Ibanez AR420 undeniable tonal tenacity.

Ibanez AR420 Solidbody Electric Guitar at a Glance:
  • Rich, vintage tone from mahogany and flame maple
  • Sonic flexibility from Tri-sound electronics
  • 3-piece neck is ultra-rigid for exceptional performance
Rich, vintage tone from mahogany and flame maple

The arched flame maple top on the AR420 looks beautiful, and with the gold hardware it puts out a classy vibe. But it also enhances the rich tonality and sustain of the mahogany body for a powerful sound that can sound warm and soulful or aggressive and biting when you match it up with the appropriate amplifier.

Sonic flexibility from Tri-sound electronics

Each of the Super 58 Custom humbuckers on the AR420 has a Tri-sound switch, which lets you choose between series, parallel, and coil-tap operation. There's a lot of tonal territory to cover here, and you'll love exploring how each configuration sounds through your favorite amplifier.

3-piece neck is ultra-rigid for exceptional performance

Multiply necks are ultra-rigid, which means they help transmit string energy to your guitar's body faster and better. So the 3-piece maple neck on the AR420 adds clarity and detail to your performance, which balances nicely with the richness and depth of mahogany and maple.

Ibanez AR420 Solidbody Electric Guitar Features:
  • Tonally-versatile guitar with mahogany body and figured maple top
  • Dual Super 58 Custom humbucking pickups with Alnico magnets have a smooth, wide-ranging output
  • Tri-sound electronics for each pickup give you series, parallel, and coil-tap wiring options
  • ART-1 bridge and Quik Change Ultra tailpiece were designed for long sustain and tuning stability
  • 3-piece maple neck plays fast and smooth, thanks to slim profile and smooth heel
  • Sure-Grip control knobs are easy to manipulate while you're performing
Great looks and unlimited tones abound from the Ibanez AR420!

Why Buy Your Guitar from Sweetwater?

See how Sweetwater goes to great lengths to give you the very best online guitar buying experience. From our online Guitar Gallery that allows you to see and select the exact instrument you want to our 55-point Evaluation process and our in-house guitar techs, we take the guesswork out of buying your next guitar online.

Additional Media

Electric Guitar Buying Guide

Tech Specs

Body Type Solidbody
Body Shape Artist
Left-/Right-handed Right-handed
Number of Strings 6
Body Material Mahogany
Top Material Flamed Maple
Body Finish Urethane
Color Violin Sunburst
Neck Material 3-pc maple, set-in
Neck Shape Slim
Fingerboard Material Rosewood
Fingerboard Inlay Pearl/abalone block inlays
Number of Frets 22, medium
Scale Length 24.75"
Nut Width 1.693"
Nut Material Plastic
Bridge/Tailpiece ART-1 bridge, Quik Change Ultra tailpiece
Tuners Gold tuners
Number of Pickups 2
Neck Pickup Super 58 Custom Humbucker
Bridge Pickup Super 58 Custom Humbucker
Controls 2 x volume, 2 x tone, 2 x Tri-sound switch, 3-way pickup selector
Strings (.009-.042)
Manufacturer Part Number AR420VLS

Customer Reviews

Based on 20 reviews
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Les Paul Pulverizer!!! (Not to be confused with Les's "Paulverizer"!)

This guitar is FAR better than ANY Les Paul you'll find, I don't care if it's a $500 Epiphone or an $8000 Les Ripoff. The action, frets, pickups and switching are nonpareil. Sounds good unplugged and better plugged in! The only thing that would make this a better guitar would be if it came with an Evertune bridge: I'm going to have Sweetwater install one on my AR420 ASAP: I got an ESP Ltd with the Evertune and I can't play anything else now... Anyway, this sucker is proof positive that the Chinese have finally got their act together. Get one before the tariffs hit!!! ;-)
Music background: Playing 54 years and counting.

Fantastic Guitar

I was searching for an LP guitar, but couldn't stomach the price. Discovered this little beauty after a Google search for "Les Paul alternatives". Fantastic right out of the box! For the money, you cannot beat it. The finish quality is very nice; the pickups are plenty for a guitar at this level. Buy it, play it, and if you upgrade them later you are still under budget. They are the same $ all over so go ahead and get it here. Ikes from Sweetwater helped me out with a case fitment question and then the guitar and all the rest of my stuff arrived on Saturday! Free shipping that arrived 2 days later on a Saturday. I'm sold on the guitar and Sweetwater.
Music background: Play guitar as a stress reliever.

Well crafted guitar

This is an updated and somewhat more accurate review. Sweetwater should delete my first one. I bought the guitar from Sweetwater because I could see the guitar in the gallery, and get their 55 pt process, which I consider very important, plus I sincerely trust them. The sell some very expensive guitars and equipment and still spent the time with me, something I appreciated and won me over as a customer. Their answers were also realistic honest and helpful answers. I have bought many guitars over the years since 1962 most much more expensive than this one, in fact some 4X as much. The guitar arrived from them in perfect condition. I had it shipped in the Ibanez case I also purchased. The fit and finish and craftsmanship were excellent. The nut was excellent with no binding. Intonation perfect. Beautiful fretwork. No buzzing. It sounded excellent unplugged. It played very well right out of the box (after tuning of course). The guitar feels strong and solid. It looks beautiful. Later I replaced the strings with the favorite I use for Gibson-like guitars, Gibson Vintage Reissue Light gauge Pure Nickel 10-46, same as I did on a new ES-335. These are mellow tone-full strings. Once I had my favorite strings on I could do a valid tone test. Many don’t realize that the strings, picks and where you pick make a huge difference. I used a Dunlop black Jazz III pick which I like for blues. The guitar sounded great. The Alnico medium output pickups sounded just as I like, similar to Gibson Classic 57s. The Ibanez pickups are very well matched for volume and tone. The neck shape (which I learned about from the Ibanez site and modeled before buying) is quite perfect for this guitar. It is nice and rounded in the back, not with a flat spot as with the 335 I had bought. It is not a super thin Wizard neck like on Ibanez metal guitars; it is appropriate for the guitar. Well I really like it. The switching system, which I really didn’t care about when I was buying the guitar turned out to be a great feature. It really can significantly change the tone of the guitar in many good usefully ways. I just was so surprised. Print out the spec sheet from Ibanez for info on how it works.I tried it out with some of my favorite amp models in my Fender Mustang III amp and it sounded great. My playing tone is mostly in my fingers so I am really hearing the guitar not a bunch of effects masking it. Bottom line, the guitar is well made, and in my opinion could easily sell for much more. I cannot see how this good of a guitar can sell for this price. It exceeded my expectations. I am 100% satisfied with the guitar as delivered by Sweetwater. I would buy it again, and from them. Actually I think if they came out with yet more finish choices I’d buy another if I like the color as much as this one. Oh help me if they came out with many new colors!
Music background: Guitar player from the 60's and 70's

les paul killer

first time ordering a guitar without actually holding it....but their excellent website actually showing the guitar makes a big difference when it has a flametop......i dealt with patrick who was beyond nice and helpful....seriously, you here about customer service all the time...but this time it was true...they've easily earned my business....as far as the guitar....plalying 25 yrs and having a les paul custom, fender strat and tele...etc....thiss is a fabulous guitar for the money...also have a 2005 ibanez artist ar300....these r my 2 fav guitars maily for the humbucker pickups and les paul scale length 24.75 which makes bending easier...the abalone time is awesome it looks like a $2000 guitar....
Music background: semi pro guitar player

Fantastic service, amazing guitar

I haven't owned or played an electric guitar since around 1978, but finally decided to give it another whirl. After LOTS of research and questioning of player-friends and acquaintances, decided to go with this Ibanez AR series guitar. Waffled between the 325 and the 420 before pulling the trigger on this fantastic instrument. It's beautiful without being too flashy, feels absolutely natural in my hands, & plays like a dream. I can't say too much about the sound, because I'm currently just playing it through an old Peavey TKO amp (yeah, I know, it's a bass amp, but I have a limited budget!), but I can say that having the ability to switch between the available wiring configurations has got me extremely excited about the possibilities of this guitar and my own potential for improved playing. As to service: MY GOODNESS! I am amazed at the level of attention that I received as a first-time customer. Kyle answered all my questions and seemed really to share my excitement at the prospect of this purchase (I don't know whether these guys make a commission on sales, but Kyle's level of enthusiasm for meeting my needs and expectation--he EARNED it!) I know I'll be making additional purchases of effects pedals, etc. Sweetwater will be the go-to venue for finding the things I need/want. Thanks, Sweetwater!
Music background: Casual player since 1970's. No real experience with electric guitars.
See also: Solidbody Guitars, Ibanez, Ibanez Solidbody Guitars