NAMM 2019: The Ibanez Altstar is the RG-headstocked acoustic you never knew you wanted

NAMM 2019: In amongst its 40 new electrics, fresh signature models and 19 new basses, you’d be forgiven for overlooking Ibanez’s acoustics for 2019, but there’s one that certainly catches the eye this year - meet the Altstar.

Like a number of Ibanez acoustic guitars, the Alstar ALT30 is designed for electric players transitioning to acoustics - and it certainly makes that clear with its visuals. RG headstock? Check. Sharkfin inlays? Check, albeit modified. Colourful finishes? You betcha.

That continues to the playability, with a flat 15.7” radius on the laurel fretboard, 22 frets, and a neck join at the 16th fret, which should ensure greater upper-fret access than your common-or-garden 12-fretter.

The guitar’s compact dreadnought body is constructed with a spruce top, plus sapele back and sides, while there’s also a laurel bridge, and Ibanez under-saddle pickup and preamp with onboard tuner.

Four finishes are on offer: Indigo Blue Burst High Gloss, Natural Browned Burst High Gloss, Red Coral Sunburst and Transparent Charcoal Burst, all with matching headstocks - honestly, we quite like the looks of the acoustic Ibanez scroll font up there.

If you fancy a go on the electric-acoustic hybrid, it’ll set you back $299 - see Ibanez  for more details.

Michael Astley-Brown

Mike is Editor-in-Chief of, in addition to being an offset fiend and recovering pedal addict. He has a master's degree in journalism, and has spent the past decade writing and editing for guitar publications including MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitarist, as well as a decade-and-a-half performing in bands of variable genre (and quality). In his free time, you'll find him making progressive instrumental rock under the nom de plume Maebe.

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