We might not expect much from inexpensive import banjos, but the Iida line of Japanese banjos made in the '70s are actually pretty solid instruments! In today's vintage market, they can often be purchased at the same price point as new imports, and they were built with substantially higher quality.
This mid-'70s Iida Model 229 is essentially a Mastertone copy with an archtop-style tone ring. As is typical of Iida banjos the entire pot and tone ring are made entirely out of one piece of aluminum. This greatly reduces the weight of the banjo, and it makes this Iida much tougher for traveling around through different climates/weather conditions. Its tone pops, and while it might not be as refined as rich as prewar examples, it sounds pretty good,. In many ways, it's a serviceable instrument that gets the job done at a fair price.
The 5th string tuner on this Model 229 has been replaced with a modern Gotoh machine, and the original plastic 5th string nut has been replaced with a proper piece of a bone. Apart from the bridge, it is otherwise all original. It plays nicely and would be a nice instrument for learning or for traveling. It includes a chipboard case and quite possibly the coolest vintage banjo strap on the block.