The JEM555 is a solid body electric guitar model introduced by Ibanez in 1994. It is a signature model of American guitarist Steve Vai and part of his JEM series. It was rolled out as a more affordable member of the JEM family, made in Korea instead of Japan and with less expensive parts. In 2008 production moved to Indonesia. It has not been part of the US lineup since 2000, but is still in production and widely available outside the US.
Notable fact is that the JEM555 does feature the US made DiMarzio Evolution pickups also used for high end models. Other features include a basswood body, a rosewood fingerboard with partial vine inlay and a double locking tremolo. The tremolo used for the JEM555 is usually the one that is used on non-Japanese made RG models that year. Since 1994 this has been the Lo TRS II, Edge Pro II and Edge III. It has been available in a black and a white finish since 1994, but the black one has been discontinued after 2008. First year's JEM555s have a clear black and white pickguard, in 1995 this was changed into a pearloid one.
The JEM555 was the first JEM model with a left-handed variant: the JEM555L introduced in 1997. In 2010, a second affordable JEM was introduced: the JEM505.
Specifications for JEM555
Areas: Area 2 (Australia, Canada, etc.) (1994–2014) / Area 3 (Europe, Western Asia, etc.) / Area 4 (China, Southeast Asia, etc.) / Area 5 (USA) (1994–2000) / Area 6 (Central/South America)
Made in: Korea (1994–2008) / Indonesia (2008–2015)
Finishes: BK (Black) (1994–2008) / WH (White) (1994–2015)