HELP! Honeymoon seems to be over...

Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by Cris_muschilensis, Jun 30, 2021.

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  1. Cris_muschilensis

    Cris_muschilensis Amateur Extraordinaire

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    Now, don't get me wrong. I love this guitar. Just the details started to appear as much as i play her. As you may remember (or not XD ) I bought with a bit of sacrifice a nice 1994 CE 22 in black sunburst. The thing is i've started to notice the following:

    -It IS heavy (my back is hurting after playing for an hour or so,this didn't happened with my MIM Tele :O )

    -IMHO is not ment to be played sitting; it gets unconfortable in a short time, and my right arm becomes sore after it.

    -I'm loving the dragon 1 neck pickup but i'm in a love-hate with the Bridge dragon 1: I'm starting to get bored of the ultra high output, it sounds with a "honk" or nasal tone which i don't find apealing for my style. High gain makes this worse (i'm using pedal preamp-AMT S2 Soldano sound a like-so maybe that could be the culprit, but before it did just the same)

    -related to above, 5 way waffer switch is nice, but don't find use to the in between positions, which sounds with a bit honkiness as full humbucker bridge position does,and it doesn't cancel noise; i thought it did. (is this even normal? or i have a bad wiring? )

    -It just doesn't hold the tune. Specially the G string. I may be the culprit because i use D# tunning and put 10-46 gauge strings. I did all the adjustments in the bridge and make sure this was adjusted as factory does (followed instructions and put every nut and bolt as recommended). Considering this, I bought some " TUNE-IT" lube for the next string change so they will slip easier, but i guess my expectations on the "exceptional tunning stability" of PRS famous reputation were too big.

    I would really love to read what you can say and recommend or advice. I want to make this great guitar more perfect, tho
    Am I doing something wrong?

    I may change bridge pup for a Seymour Duncan and probably return to Mcarty wiring (not even sure if SD is compatible with the waffer wiring), but i really need to not hear that honk, it gets more and more annoying for recording.
     
  2. Drew

    Drew New Member

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    The first thing I did when I bought an older CE was to send it off to the PRS tech center. They swapped the pickups, rewired it to McCarty specs, and sorted out the set-up issues all in one shot. Can be pricey but that thing played like any other brand new guitar fresh out of the factory afterwards.

    Have you weighed it? CEs are usually not that heavy. None of mine have been. Regarding the right arm, the lip on the body can be an irritation, but it's the PRS thing you just have to get used to.

    Regarding the pickups, PRS high output pickups of the past always emphasized upper midrange so they can be very honky/nasally. Sounds like you need something more scooped. The custom 5 and it's sister the custom custom are good all-around bridge pickup choices that aren't fire breathers.
     
  3. HANGAR18

    HANGAR18 Not buying any more guitars. Again.

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    There was this thing which happened to my back a number of years ago and ever since, I have been favoring lighter and lighter guitars. Before then I always swore by the heavier body singlecut design. For me, those days are over.

    PRS does occasionally come out with semi-hollow (semi-solid) body guitars. Maybe keep an eye out for some of those. Also stick to the 25" scale length for down tuning or longer if you can find one.
     
  4. AP515

    AP515 Mostly Normal

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  5. Cris_muschilensis

    Cris_muschilensis Amateur Extraordinaire

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    Thanks guys. I would gladly send my guitar to PTC but i live in South America :/

    With the weight thing i might try other strap, anyway i have to change it. I use a cotton Fender one, the issue is it has a metallic fastener and that's constantly bumping the guitar (ugh)

    I used the wiring diagram from here:
    https://forums.prsguitars.com/threads/prs-wiring-mods-resource-thread.45759/

    the thing is i identified the proper one, but is just the way it works. Read a ton about it but i'm somehow dissapointed in how it works. The PCB "modern" rotary switch is a bit expensive so i'm not buying it soon.

    The previous owner changed the winged tuner for phase II's
    [​IMG]


    Been a locking tuner user for long so no issues with the wrapings ;)

    Weigh is 3,5kg = 7,62lb. Maybe the weigh distribution with my strap is weird. Will try something different
     
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  6. AP515

    AP515 Mostly Normal

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    1. There were a lot of wiring options on that thread. The one you need is the one on the PRS website.
    prs_custom5wayrotary_pre_2007.pdf (d159anurvk4929.cloudfront.net)

    2. The Phase 2's are not exactly like the winged tuners. The thickness of the headstock is a little different. It looks like they worked, but the nut is just barely meeting the threads on the posts. Just so you know.

    3. The G is the one going out of tune and it is the one in the photo that looks odd at the nut. Might just be lint but something is up there.
     
  7. Cris_muschilensis

    Cris_muschilensis Amateur Extraordinaire

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    Thanks for the help AP515, but the issue is i have this rotary
    [​IMG]

    Your circuit is for this one i asume:
    [​IMG]


    2- Dang! Who's gonna sell me some winged ones :'(
    3- Is a bit of dirt, but yes i asume something is going on in the nut.

    I will try the issue of the bridge pickup with a tube preamp instead of the FET one i have. FETs tend to go crazy on high gain and does not so good sounds in high gain,yet somehow they are still used. If after that it keeps sounding unpleaseant i will have to part ways with Dragon I :(
     
  8. Matte82

    Matte82 New Member

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    As to the tuning stability, how does the G string feel when going in the nut slot? You say you're running 10's. I know some models have been set up for 9's. So opening up the slot a little bit may help. Also is the bridge parallel to the body? It may need a bit of and adjustment too.

    I say this because I briefly had a 513, and that thing was as stable as any hardtail I've ever had. It was quite a bit newer, so I can't discount that, but I'm betting you can get the tuning issues sorted.
     
  9. AP515

    AP515 Mostly Normal

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    Yeah, you have the original 5 way. Even earlier than the one in the Pre-2007 schematic. I don't have one or I'd take a picture of mine so you know the wiring. Maybe someone else will have one wired in theirs. The same wires go to it as the schematic, but you'll need the very old schematic to know which wire goes to which post on the 5 way. The PCB versions come up for sale occasionally. You might find one.
     
  10. ducmike

    ducmike New Member

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    7.6lbs isn't what I would call heavy. A quality wide padded strap made a huge difference for me. I have a few Ethos straps, but I have heard they have been slow in shipping and customer service lately. I can play my 9lb LP for a couple hours with no discomfort with these straps. Plenty of quality good ones though, look for the strap thread in the general discussion thread.

    Tuning is most likely the nut and sounds like you already got the stuff to fix it.

    My Santana has a hot ceramic bridge pup too, not quite as hot as a D1. I would definitely try lowering it. My Santana is stock height, but I find I like it best with the volume rolled down around 6-8 with any gain from the amps or pedals. Might just try playing with the volume knob. I rarely play any of my guitars with the volume on 10 other than for a lead boost or specific song need.

    As far as the rotary, just make sure the new pickup you buy is 4 conductor, still need the right schematic for both though.
     
  11. RC Mike

    RC Mike New Member

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    My CE22 is a hair over 9lbs. Probably the heaviest out there. I use a padded 4” strap with it. That’s my only complaint about it.

    The rotary took a little getting used to, but now I really enjoy it. The positions are unique and the time exploring them was well worth it.
     
  12. Cris_muschilensis

    Cris_muschilensis Amateur Extraordinaire

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    Thanks for your answers, reading all of them. So i made this video to show you what i listen from my speakers (JBL LS305 monitors)


    Here you can listen that guitar struggles with tune (mind that here we are on winter so woods can be affected as well) and the honkiness i feel.
    Also, how the 9 and 7 positions just don't cancel hum. The Weight thing is maybe just how i take her. I'm a dwarf in terms of height so probably that could lead into my postural problem (hence perceived weight). And, i cleaned the switch a couple of days ago but now it is shorting :facepalm: so maybe i will have to invest in a replacement anyway.
     
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  13. Daniel Elam

    Daniel Elam New Member

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    I have a CE22 that’s probably close to 8.5lbs. I normally use 2” cotton straps but with my low back pain I found a 2.5” leather strap makes that guitar a bit easier to play out. Mine has the McCarty wiring harness and with the coils split the pickups hum. It’s normal. The tuning issue could be the nut or could be the knife edge of the trem. Someone could have cranked on the screws while under string tension and damaged it. More likely a nut issue. My CE22 needed lots of work when I got it but it’s perfect now. The Dragon IIs sound amazing. I actually like them better than my 85/15 in my CE24. I haven’t played Dragon I pickups. Your monitoring volume seemed really quiet in your video, meaning the guitar seemed louder acoustically than the amped sound. If your rig is digital, are you at the right output volume? Like with my Helix, the volume has to be all the way up to be at unity gain. Then I adjust my actual volume from my studio monitors.
     
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  14. AP515

    AP515 Mostly Normal

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    I agree, but it may have been the mic placement on the phone. It was close to the string sand not close to the monitors. The effect was the same, I couldn't hear enough to discern a honk or the splits. Nice playing, by the way. Maybe record again away from the guitar and closer to the monitors/cab.
     
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  15. Cris_muschilensis

    Cris_muschilensis Amateur Extraordinaire

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    You are right. I will upload an isolated audio from the guitar later. Thanks for your answers. So I have three points for improvement so far:
    -bridge screws
    -nut (I will try to buy a replacement)
    -rotary switch.
     
  16. Draconomics

    Draconomics Celebrating 15 years of bad tone

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    I will second the nut. If that's the original, you may have binding issues causing tuning instability. In my experience, tuning problems are generally never the tuners. Its typically caused by either mismatched string/spring tension, or the nut is binding the string as you use the trem.

    BTW, did you also make a truss rod adjustment? You mentioned you play in flat tuning. If not, make sure you check that. Also keep in mind some guitars just do not like flat tuning very much for whatever reason.
     
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  17. Cris_muschilensis

    Cris_muschilensis Amateur Extraordinaire

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    Hello, i checked the neck and is straight so i didn't ajusted the truss rod. Maybe mine doesn't like sharp tunings :/
    Here is the new video with the isolated direct sound, so you can see/hear what's happening with my guitar. Is subtle but i can notice it. Also the noise in the in between positions and the rotary doing short circuit. The dimarzio strap helped the problem with the weight feel so it will stay there



    thanks for the help, i'll keep reading you!
    PD: video starts at 00:14 seconds, made a mistake in the edit! sorry about that
    PD2: sorry about the background today i didn't had enough time to tidy all up
     
  18. dogrocketp

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

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    My old CE24 is a shade over 9 lbs. I use a 2 &1/2 inch well padded leather strap, so I can do 3 sets if necessary.
     
  19. RevBillyG

    RevBillyG New Member

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    The problem is it's your only PRS. You should have three by now. Trust me, it will solve all your "problems"
     
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  20. AP515

    AP515 Mostly Normal

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    I didn't hear Honkiness (if that's a word), but I did hear what I would call harshness. But I heard it on the neck as well as the bridge pickups. Just different. I wonder if it's just incompatibility with your preamp. I'd like to hear it coming from a tube amp of some kind so see if it's a digital problem not analog.
     
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