Custom 24 with fat neck?

Which of the SE or S2 models as articulate, hi-fi, and rock-leaning as the Custom 24? Seems like the rock ones generally come with thin necks... Mira, Tremonti, Holcomb... whereas the more vintage ones come with thick necks... Santana, Starla, McCarty.

Really what I'm looking for is 25" scale, thick neck, with that magical blend of articulation/cut/compression/output in the high end and round/defined/pleasing snap in the low end that the Custom 24 does so well. Nothing I have sounds better than the Custom 24 but I can't play it for too long given the thin neck.

Or would a McCarty 594 doublecut with different pickups do the trick? I have an S2 currently but the tone definitely leans more towards a low output Les Paul than the Custom 24's 80s vibe.
Hi @alex1fly … i agree with you that the custom 24 has a certain rock element that my other 4 PRS’s don’t have. They’re more vintage sounding, which I love but my 2014 CU24 is just a real special guitar….
To answer your question, from 2013 up through 2021, they generally came with a pattern regular neck. I’m referring to the S2 line, not the Core series……..The dealers or sellers will usually specify neck size. PRS went mostly to pattern wide thin in 2022 for S2 CU24’s…... Exceptions to both, but generally the case. The wide thin neck I can’t play. My hand cramps up and the guitar will be a bit thinner sounding than ones that have a thicker neck.
Last edited:
I can't speak about dealers you work with.

However, you'd be surprised to know the dealers that I work with are well aware of my tastes and needs in gear, both in the studio context and for guitar gear. So it depends on the dealer.

My guitar dealer knows my wants and needs to a 'T'. I can't speak for his other customers, but he's mentioned that he carries gear that is very much attuned to what players in his neck of the woods are into in terms of music and tone - which, incidentally, isn't the stuff I'm into.

At this point, I can simply ask, "Will this guitar or amp appeal to me?" and I'll get a straight up answer. That's down to not only brands and models, but individual guitars' tones.

He stocks gear that appeals to me. The same is true of my main pro audio dealer. I will only buy guitars and amps from someone who understands exactly what I need.

What I don't know is how a dealer who is unaware of what real-deal customers actually want can stay in business. Because buying inventory that doesn't sell is just plain stupid.

On the other hand, when I find a dealer I can work well with, I'll keep working with the shop, and that dealer learns what I'm into. My relationships to all my vendors work that way.
Les, you’re lucky to have 2 stores that are tuned into your needs. It’s certainly not the norm where I live…..
In my experience owning multiples of the same model is that they don't sound the same guitar to guitar. The core 594 that I play on sounds a certain way..yes..but to think they all sound that way isn't the case. Custom 24s...well I've never had one sound like the other and my favorite one I can't sell it cuz it is soooo different than any other custom 24 I've tried. I own 3 at the moment. Also I've not gotten along with 4 or 5 of the custom 24s I've owned in the past. Sold em.

Really you just gotta hunt for a double cut core 594 that might sound the way you want, if you want a modern guitar that scratches your itch. I gotta say though I do love my Santana. Totally different animal.
A 594 series will never sound like a Custom 24… I own both and have had a number of Custom 24’s since the 90’s and they all have similar (but different) tones. The 594 has that Gibson low mid bassy bottom , sweet highs, more mids thing cause of the scale length, Tuneamatic bridge, design, fat neck ect. Very different than any CU24 I’ve ever played. Paul was going after the Gibson market with the 594 series and he’s done a superb job in creating (imho) a more refined and somewhat different guitar and doesn’t have to deal with any legacy like Gibson does, which in many ways keeps them stuck in the past, which isn’t really their fault. It’s what their buyers expect….
Being Paul’s first production guitar from 1985, The Custom 24 is still the rock race horse of PRS:p
Last edited:
Maybe, Maybe Not. Just How Sure Are You? ;) If It Isn't Private Stock, The Dealer In The Huge Majority Of Instances Across The Board Are Buying Off The Menu Paul Gives Them To Order From. The Saying "I Build What Sells" Is A Great Heat Deflector And Neutralizer In Addition To Steering The Consumer To The Private Stock Department For Their "Unique" Wants And Needs.

How Much Time Does Paul Really Spend On The Phone Or In Person With His Dealers Actually Getting The Pulse Of What The Customer Is Saying To The Dealer... Who Then Gives That "Accurate Information" To Paul So He Can Make His Guitar Building Business Decisions? How Accurate Do You Really Think That Information Is? How Much Of That Information Do You Really Think He Is Getting Overall? Not Much If He Is Going About It Like That. It Simply Doesn't Work Because The Huge Majority of Information Will Be Lost Or Watered Down And Paul Is Smarter Than That.

I Have Been In This Game For Many Years And Not A Single Dealer I Know And Deal With Truly Knows My Wants And Needs Gear Wise. Dealers Concerns Are Typically First And Foremost Margin Or Else They Won't Be Dealers For Long.
I was a successful guitar store owner/ dealer for 30 years. Nowadays it would be called a boutique store but my primary concern first and foremost was never profit margins it was always about trying to help guide customers to their needs. I had gained lots of knowledge of the years concerning tube & solid state amps and guitars which I was able to access to help folks.
…..And after being out of it now for 20 years I still run into customers that are so grateful that I was able to help them find the right tube amp or guitar that they still own and play to this day ……. That was always my goal, and that’s priceless :)
That part of the business I really miss….some of mfrs., not so much. Actually PRS was always a joy to work with, which I was always grateful for
Last edited:
Les, you’re lucky to have 2 stores that are tuned into your needs. It’s certainly not the norm where I live…..
As a practical matter, my situation is like yours.

I've developed a strong relationship with s couple of vendors over many years. I don't even bother to shop around.

Granted, we have some very good stores in Michigan, but my guitar and amp store for the past 23 years is 500+ miles away, in Pennsylvania!

With Jack Gretz. I'm dealing with the store's owner instead of someone less experienced/knowledgeable (Jack's also a luthier). If there's an issue with the gear (it happens), he's on the horn that day with his supplier, including PRS, Mesa and others, and any problem is solved quickly. There isn't some dude in a giant service department telling me, "I'm waiting for manufacturer X to get back to me, call in a week."

I've only bought from him after my initial experience in 2000 (in the early days he worked at another store).

Vintage King got started in the Detroit area - but they don't have a sales showroom here (they do in LA and Nashville I think), just a vintage restoration and service workshop, and warehouse.

I like their inventory (there are lots of 'these aren't the usual suspects' pieces), and because of their commercial studio clientele they know their business.

But the actual buying experience is much like buying from other online dealers - though in the case of Vintage King and Gretz I've dealt with the owners since they got started.
Last edited: