|Body And Neck:|
Ibanez may have the deserved reputation for their work in the lightning-quick, high-gain electric guitar market, but the Japanese brand makes a mean acoustic guitar too – as the PN15 parlor is out to prove. This compact guitar sits comfortably as one of the more affordable models in our chart of the best parlor guitars, so let’s see what the fuss is about.
Firstly, the body feels a little bigger than some of the other parlors we’ve featured. This isn’t necessarily a good or bad thing, but does offer a bigger projection (as discussed below). Coming in at under $200, the PN15 is, of course, made from laminated materials – spruce on the top, with the mahogany-like sapele used for the back and sides. This body is coated with a high-gloss mellow brown sunburst finish, as well as a black and white soundhole rosette for a unique style.
A gloss-finished mahogany is used for the neck, along with nandu (Indonesian wood, which is a popular material with Ibanez) for the fretboard, which houses a total of 18 frets. The nut width is 1.65” which is great for strumming although it feels a little narrow in the hands for finger-picking. Of course, at this price it is clearly a mass-produced production model, but not much gives it away as the craftsmanship feels solid. Still, new owners would benefit from a setup on arrival, as is usually the case with entry-level models such as this.
You can excuse Ibanez for offering nothing extravagant in the way of hardware, but they do impress with their offering. While there is nothing high-end, this parlor comes with a set of Advantage bridge pins, which make string changes easier and keeps the strings firmly in place. In addition to this, the PN15 is equipped with a set of decent (but stock) chrome tuners, as well as an attractive nandu bridge, with an Ivorex II nut and saddle, which marginally improves tuning stability and sustain.
This is a wallet-friendly parlor guitar so we didn’t expect it to set the world alight. But, while it won’t compare to some of the mid-range offerings, it still impresses. With X bracing and the slightly larger body, this is one parlor that really sings, with a good projection for the size and a surprisingly open tone – still a little midrange heavy, but one which is quite well balanced and not particularly boxy.
With a well-balanced tone, a quality build and a very appealing price, the Ibanez PN15 is an excellent choice for beginners, songwriters or players who simply want a parlor guitar on hand should inspiration strike.