CE24 talk me into or out of it...

Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by Nick Love, Jul 6, 2019.

  1. Nick Love

    Nick Love New Member

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    Little background, I was pretty much exclusively a Strat/Tele player for about 15 years before recently switching to shorter scale Humbucker guitars over the last couple of years. I’ve been playing a PRS Chris Henderson model and it’s a fine fine guitar, but even after all this time my speed and accuracy improve whenever I switch back to my bolt on guitars. I do love the easier bending feel of the flatter radius and shorter scale of Gibson and PRS guitars though. I also love the driven tones of Humbuckers and have learned to dial in a great clean tone with them.
    My ideal guitar would have a mahogany maple topped body with two humbuckers and with a satin-y bolt on neck with a shorter scale than Fender. I also prefer a thin neck to a fat one. Sounds exactly like a CE24 right? So what’s holding me back?
    Honestly I’m a little concerned about the corner cutting - the reduced carve, the Korean made hardware etc. I’m concerned coming from I guess what would be considered a “Core” instrument it will feel like a step down even though specs wise it’s exactly what I’m looking for. Can I get some feedback from the community?

    Also, people frequently mention original CE’s are available on the cheap, I’ve been stalking Reverb for months and that is simply no longer the case. At least if you want one in decent condition. So that’s not really an option for me.
     
  2. Ovibos

    Ovibos Unsure why all necks aren't rosewood

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    The reduced carve is a bit less sexy, but honestly more comfortable than a core.

    The Korean hardware is fine, especially the tuners.

    It's the cheapest model with the core 85/15 USA pickups, which are great and used all the way thru the core line.

    Fit and finish is great; it's the same factory.

    If you buy a used recent CE24 you could likely flip it for minimal loss if you don't vibe with it.
     
  3. Bowtiefanatc

    Bowtiefanatc #NeverGibson

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    Don’t do it....stop....really, don’t.......

    Just buy it! You will enjoy it.
     
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  4. garrett

    garrett Not a New Member

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    Totally agree.

    I really do like the shallower carve. It doesn't dig into your arm as much. Still looks great.

    Not a thing wrong with the pin-mount Phase II keys. The bridge isn't quite as nice as Core, but it's a great tonal choice for the CE. The steel block is a nice complement to the snappy maple bolt-on design. If it bothers you, an upgrade from John Mann will make you happy.

    85/15 pickups are fantastic, and the split tones are some of the best I've heard.

    Anyway, I'd happily rock one if it weren't for the skinny neck, and I've played Core guitars for over 20 years.
     
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  5. gush

    gush I'm not a new member!!!!

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    I have not played a new CE. I do have three 1997 CEs and I love them.

    I have not been tempted to buy a new CE because while I absolutely love the 8515 neck the bridge pickup was just ok.

    I understand the SE trem was chosen for its tonal characteristics but I'd always be thinking about a new mann trem.

    As lame as it is, I LOVE the top carve of the core models. Its sexy and I need to see it.
     
  6. CyFan4036

    CyFan4036 New Member

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    No way a $2000 guitar should come with Korean hardware and a gig bag. But apparently Paul Reed Smith doesn’t run the company anymore, his accountants do....and that’s [email protected] up many a fine company in the past.

    Last time I looked there were plenty used on Guitar Center’s website in nice condition. And with their return policy, you can’t lose. Plus you can have them ship it to your local GC.
     
  7. Steve's addiction

    Steve's addiction New Member

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    I'm about to find out. Just purchased a semi hollowbody and should be here Monday. I have the 89 model so I will be able to compare. Tone and play report to follow
     
  8. marooned

    marooned New Member

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    An older 2nd hand CE is what I’d look for....pre 95 will have an alder body and later ones mahogany.
    Mine is a 93 and other than the bolt on maple neck I can’t find anything to differentiate between it and a core model from the same period.
     
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  9. Nick Love

    Nick Love New Member

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    Thanks for the feedback everyone, seems to be kind of split down the middle now, with three go for it’s, three avoids and one I’ll tell you my first experience when I get mine. For those that said to stay away from the newer CE’s, do you know of any current production models that check all my boxes (shorter scale, dual Humbucker, trem, bolt on satin finished neck) that I should check out? Obviously PRS’s only current model is the CE24 but maybe there’s something else out there I’m not aware of.
     
  10. sloanthebone

    sloanthebone I love quilts!

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    Check out a Johnny Hiland PRS. Hard to find since he isn’t a PRS artist any more but sounds close to what you are looking for.
     
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  11. Mozzi

    Mozzi https://imgur.com/user/BAMozzy

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    I don't see any reason not to buy a CE 24 if that's what you want. PRS may well of done some 'cost-cutting' too keep the guitar price as low as they have but that still doesn't mean its not worth investing in. The Pick-ups are US made so you are getting great quality there. The bridge may well be a moulded version but according to Bryan Ewald, that contributes to the 'brighter' tone and the Bolt on Maple neck also adds a bit more snap. Some people prefer that to the core Custom 24 and the more simple carve some find more comfortable to play.

    If in doubt, give one a go and see what you think as it may suit you perfectly. None of us will be buying it, playing it etc so the most important person in this is you. Its your money so go and try one first - even if you don't end up buying that one in that store, you can get a great idea of how they feel and whether its a guitar you should actively seek to add to your collection.
     
  12. markd21

    markd21 New Member

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    I was biased against the CE24 for a few of the reasons you mentioned. The Korean parts were not a real issue since I have four S2 guitars. My problem with the CE24 was more the carve, the fact it had Korean parts on a $2000 guitar, and it came with a big bag at price.

    I broke down and decided to get a CE when the Semi Hollow version was released. All I can say is, don't sweat your concerns. The CE is an AMAZING guitar. The carve is comfortable, the pickups kill, and the guitar plays like a Core.

    I really believe the CE is great instrument that will fit what you're looking for. I got a 594 shortly after the CE, and while they are totally different, I will have to admit that in regular playing conditions I gravitate to the CE.

    Get it. It's a great guitar.
     
  13. Mbroadster

    Mbroadster I told you I was sick, but nooooooooo....

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    I have a 2019 CE24 (See my avatar) and I love it. It plays, sounds, and feels superb.

    While there are used Cores for around the same money, I wanted something new and have no regrets about buying it. The decision is yours, so play both if you can - it's a win either way.
     
    #13 Mbroadster, Jul 6, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2019
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  14. bodia

    bodia Authorities said.....best leave it.....unsolved

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    I gotta agree with Mark.
     
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  15. Ovibos

    Ovibos Unsure why all necks aren't rosewood

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    This attitude towards imports is an outdated POV, IMHO.

    Dingwall NG3 is a great bass played by professionals and it's built in China. $2500.

    My iPhone was made in China.
     
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  16. 21Hemispheres12

    21Hemispheres12 New Member

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    I have a reclaimed CE24 and a wood library Custom 24 and the CE24 does not feel like a step down from the custom 24 at all. The shallow carve still looks good and the only Korean parts are the bridge and tuners, the switches and pickups are all US. My one modification was a Mannmade NOS2000 bridge which really brought the CE24 up to the custom 24s level. I look at them like different flavors of the same platform instead of lower tier and higher tier.
     
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  17. dogrocketp

    dogrocketp I drank the PRS kool aid, and it was tasty!

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    My 2003 CE is one of my forever keepers. The concerns about "cheaper" hardware on the new don't strike me as valid. I go all the way from SE to Core, and that's only to have as many different sounds as possible. As Mark said, don't worry, just do it.
     
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  18. markd21

    markd21 New Member

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    I agree. The hardware is solid. Even the bridge. No changes needed. Everything works together to give tuning stability and righteous tone.
     
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  19. Mozzi

    Mozzi https://imgur.com/user/BAMozzy

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    Whether the concerns are Valid or not, you cannot argue that PRS have built the CE's cheaper and used parts that are not as 'expensive' to make as the equivalent parts on a Core. Some parts are on SE's and S2's too but these all carry Paul Reed Smith's name on the headstock and the fact they are good enough on a CE is more praise for these parts in the 'cheapest' PRS guitars. I doubt PRS would put his name on the headstock if the parts weren't 'good enough' to do the job.

    Cheaper though doesn't make them significantly worse. Whether that is the way the Neck is constructed out of 3 pieces or using the same trem 'bridge' as found on the SE but not used on the core. The 'carve' on the top also takes a lot less time and uses thinner slabs of maple (get 2 guitar tops out of the quantity of maple it takes to make 1 core) so the build uses less materials or wastes less as less needs to be cut away to keep the price here down. The lack of a hard case too is another example of cost cutting in the CE/bolt on range.

    That doesn't necessarily make it 'worse' but it does make it cheaper. At the end of the day, the tone difference and 'feel' of the guitar is personal preference so you may prefer the feel and tone. The cost cutting by PRS has obviously cut the costs in areas that doesn't impact negatively to you. As long as the tuners and bridge are perfectly functional, do the job that you expect without negatively affecting things like tuning stability and playability, it doesn't matter to you if the bridge was moulded or the tuners are different to the tuners on a core.

    I am not saying that the Bolt-Ons are bad at all - far from it. We know how good the SE's are and the S2's which both have more parts in common with each other and some of the parts are good enough for PRS to use on their bolt-ons. To me, it shows how good the SE's are that they have parts that are good enough for PRS to use them on their CE. If its good enough for PRS to use it, its good enough!
     
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  20. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    I wouldn’t necessarily assume that the metal parts made overseas are any worse than the metal parts on lots of other very fine guitars. The OEM customers of the overseas manufacturers have certain specifications/tolerances, and, if they’re met, it’s not going to make much, if any, difference what country those requirements are met in.

    It would only be an issue if the supplier wasn’t meeting the specs. I can’t imagine a company like PRS tolerating a parts supplier that couldn’t meet the specs. Creating the parts for a large customer most often means an investment in tooling and materials for the supplier. No one wants to spend that money, only to lose the business.

    Back in my misspent youth when I was still practicing law, OEM manufacturers for the auto industry had to meet certain ratings that, if memory serves, were called Spear ratings. If the supplier met the requirements, they were OK, and did well. If they couldn’t meet the Spear ratings consistently, these OEM suppliers would lose their contracts to supply parts. The economic consequences for the supplier usually caused them huge headaches, which was where I came into the picture - the guy who cleaned up the mess.

    In any case, there was a very substantial incentive for the parts supplier to make quality parts, because not meeting the ratings, and the consequent loss of the business, could be a death sentence for the OEM supplier that depended on a small number of customers for a huge volume of business, who’d invested millions in tooling up for the production.

    So I wouldn’t worry about where the parts were made. I’d just be concerned with whether the parts were made well. The CE’s parts haven’t engendered many functional complaints here, anyway, so what’s the issue?
     

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