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Dec 22, 2020 - 1:49:22 PM
66 posts since 4/9/2019

Anyone have experience/ opinions on the new Ibanez B300 banjo?
Rosewood Resonator, purpleheart wood fret board, rolled tone ring, basswood block rim, friction  tuners. Acrylic inlays... seems like a good value around 400 for a knock-around tool. Thoughts?
Doc

from their website....

Ibanez B300 5-string Banjo Features at a Glance:

  • Rosewood resonator with abalone purfling 
  • Basswood block rim 
  • Rolled tone ring
  • Steel tension hoop with 24-piece bracket
  • Mahogany neck
  • acrylic fretboard inlay
  • Remo 11" coated Weatherking banjo head
  • 2 piece flange 

Edited by - DocSavino on 12/22/2020 13:55:58

Dec 22, 2020 - 1:53:33 PM

KCJones

USA

1353 posts since 8/30/2012
Online Now

It's one banjo that has caught my eye recently, because of the pot construction. I think they're the only Asian import with a block rim. Ibanez has made good banjos in the past. I don't know if Ibanez makes them or who.

Post videos and your experience when you get it. I've been pretty interested and it'd be nice to have one more entry into the 'sub-500' market.

Dec 22, 2020 - 1:57:08 PM

66 posts since 4/9/2019

Will do - expecting it on 12/24.

Dec 22, 2020 - 2:07:28 PM

1541 posts since 2/4/2013

It's unlikely Ibanez make it but the block rim is very unusual and untypical of the usual Asian banjo factories. Typically for a guitar maker they can't describe banjos. It has some sort of flathead tone ring in the photos I've seen. Unless this has been replaced. If it has then it's not such a good option. I've seen videos of the B200 which seems to be largely the same and it sounds OK.

Dec 22, 2020 - 4:34:42 PM

roydsjr

USA

706 posts since 5/17/2007

I have a 200 that is almost the same far as pot and neck inlay pattern tube and plate, flat head tone ring, rosewood resonator, ( regular binding) These pots are deeper than gibson banjo pots. I made a new neck for mine since the original was cracked on the sides near nut. I repaired it but I'm not using it, (the neck) ,all chrome hardware, geared tuners, not friction

Edited by - roydsjr on 12/22/2020 16:37:12

Dec 28, 2020 - 2:05:11 PM

66 posts since 4/9/2019

Just received the 2020 Ibanez B300 banjo ($459.95 from Reverb - Melody Music Shop out of Indiana) Out of the box it looked very nice, acrylic inlays were level, frets set correctly and neck straight/ set against pot well. The bad... Drum pressure was under 80#, all tuners were loose and 5th tuner was not seated properly. Took her apart, tightened the head to 90#, tightened coordinator bars, replaced strings with D’Addario strings, tightened tuners up and retuned. Adjusted the action, replacing the bridge with a Snuffy Smith 5/8. Tightened and reassembled. I was amazed at how nice it sounded! I am not even going to qualify it by saying “for a cheaper banjo “, it sounded as nice as the last couple Gibson RB250’s I had which sold for $2k each area! Only issue is the 5th string tuner, which I will need to replace as it was not installed properly. Not sure how to post a video here, but will try shortly.

Edited by - DocSavino on 12/28/2020 14:06:36

Dec 28, 2020 - 2:23:35 PM

66 posts since 4/9/2019

quote:
Originally posted by DocSavino

Just received the 2020 Ibanez B300 banjo ($459.95 from Reverb - Melody Music Shop out of Indiana) Out of the box it looked very nice, acrylic inlays were level, frets set correctly and neck straight/ set against pot well. The bad... Drum pressure was under 80#, all tuners were loose and 5th tuner was not seated properly. Took her apart, tightened the head to 90#, tightened coordinator bars, replaced strings with D’Addario strings, tightened tuners up, adjusted tailpiece higher and retuned. Adjusted the action, replacing the bridge with a Snuffy Smith 5/8. Tightened, retuned and reassembled. I was amazed at how nice it sounded! I am not even going to qualify it by saying “for a cheaper banjo “, it sounded as nice as the last couple Gibson RB250’s I had which sold for $2k each area! Good sustain, very Scruggs sound! Only issue is the 5th string tuner, which I will need to replace as it was not installed properly. Not sure how to post a video here, but will try shortly.


Dec 29, 2020 - 6:12:05 AM

66 posts since 4/9/2019

quote:
Originally posted by DocSavino
quote:
Originally posted by DocSavino

Just received the 2020 Ibanez B300 banjo ($459.95 from Reverb - Melody Music Shop out of Indiana) Out of the box it looked very nice, acrylic inlays were level, frets set correctly and neck straight/ set against pot well. The bad... Drum pressure was under 80#, all tuners were loose and 5th tuner was not seated properly. Took her apart, tightened the head to 90#, tightened coordinator bars, replaced strings with D’Addario strings, tightened tuners up, adjusted tailpiece higher and retuned. Adjusted the action, replacing the bridge with a Snuffy Smith 5/8. Tightened, retuned and reassembled. I was amazed at how nice it sounded! I am not even going to qualify it by saying “for a cheaper banjo “, it sounded as nice as the last couple Gibson RB250’s I had which sold for $2k each area! Good sustain, very Scruggs sound! Only issue is the 5th string tuner, which I will need to replace as it was not installed properly. Not sure how to post a video here, but will try shortly.


Added comment on the tuners, they seem not to hold tight, even after adjustment.  Just ordered a full set of Gotoh Geared tuners ($112 from banjo.com). So full investment is about $570... for a very nice, light weight, good sounding banjo is not bad!


Dec 31, 2020 - 8:20:43 PM

66 posts since 4/9/2019

Additional comment, have had a chance to play it for a few hours... still amazed by the sound and playability.... only issue is the tuners ( see below) and the location of the 5th tuner is a little too  close to the 4th fret compared to what I am uSed to... also I miss seeing inlays at the higher frets.

Added comment on the tuners, they seem not to hold tight, even after adjustment.  Just ordered a full set of Gotoh Geared tuners ($112 from banjo.com). So full investment is about $570... for a very nice, light weight, good sounding banjo is not bad!


 


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