In 2020, I will be buying my first PRS guitar, the 594

Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by Revelation, Aug 14, 2019.

  1. Revelation

    Revelation New Member

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    I'm a blues, rock, and jazz player (Sort of like a Larry Carlton,Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck player). I have been playing guitar for over 25 years. I have a Les Paul Custom signed by Les Paul that I will be giving to my son when he graduates college in 2021. I have a Fender American Strat and Telecaster as well and a Carvin SH575 which is my jazz type of guitar. I always loved PRS guitars and with my brother having two of them, I knew I had to get one. Out of all the guitars, the 594 does it for me the most.

    I decided on the Tobacco Burst and it will be replacing my Les Paul as I want the more traditional look. I have a couple of questions:

    What is a 10 Top? I assume it means the maple top is a better choice top than the standard? I believe it would be worth the extra money to get it.

    What strings come standard with a PRS guitar? Some have said the bottom strings are heavier than the higher strings. I usually use 10's on my guitar with the exception of 11's on my Carvin 575. What are the gauges, and if they are not standard strings, would you recommend staying with them, or do most of you just put 10's or 9's if you prefer on your guitar?

    As I have a deep appreciation for well made guitars, is there a site or someplace where I can obtain a little more detail about PRS and specifically the 594?
     
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  2. CandidPicker

    CandidPicker Feed & Seed

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    Hi, Rev,

    A 10 top is the first grade upwards from a standard top, meaning the maple top has some flame figuring. 10 tops vary in quality and figuring from guitar to guitar, and can be wide flame, or very tight flame. On some 10 tops, there might be some spots where the flame seems to die out into a more standard-graded flame, but these are rare and folks sometimes appreciate these as well, because they might be sold for less cost because of the "defective" flame.

    Others can teach you what goes beyond 10 tops, grading-wise.

    PRS guitars usually arrive from the factory with 10-46 gauge strings, but a 2nd-hand guitar can have anything if the original owner swapped out strings for something else.

    If this were the case of swapped strings, it would be necessary to set-up and intonate the guitar you've purchased. A factory-new guitar has already been set-up and received an intonation, so no worries there.

    The PRS website itself can be a place to learn about the 594 design specs, as well as this forum. Many folks own 594s and will happily display their examples for you via photos.

    https://prsguitars.com
     
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  3. garrett

    garrett knows just enough to be dangerous

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    It is totally cosmetic, so "worth it" is up to you.



    Their own brand, standard 10-46 gauges.


    You are here!

    I highly recommend picking up a copy of the PRS Electric Guitar Book for history.

    Check this out for the 594: https://www.prsguitars.com/index.php/blog/post/behind_the_scenes_the_mccarty_594_models
     
  4. shimmilou

    shimmilou Established in 1963

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    Why do you hate your son? :eek:
     
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  5. Mozzi

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

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    A 10-top is a top that someone has decided to be aesthetically more pleasing. Generally that means the flame top has no dead spots but its generally a cosmetic upgrade. Its the equivalent of asking someone to pick a nicer looking top for them and that's really how 10-tops came about because dealers were asking PRS to pick a nicer bit of maple for the tops. Tonally it has no effect and ALL the maple is cured exactly the same way too. It really comes down to whether or not you think the figuring of the maple is worth paying a premium for or not. That '10top' can also command a small increase in the price whether you are the buyer or seller but ultimately, its just a cosmetic upgrade.

    The Guitar is shipped with PRS brand strings and with a regular 10-46 set. That doesn't mean that is what you may end up buying with your guitar as some shops may replace the strings for same size but different brand to ship to you. Used though can be whatever the previous owner preferred or again, what the store may put on to ship. A lot of stores will do a check, clean and set-up before sending - especially if you buy online. Shops may have had that guitar hanging up for people to try and will check and clean (wipe of dust and/or fingerprints) before casing to ship and of course you can ask to have the guitar shipped with a set-up and new strings too. Point is, the strings that it left the factory with may not be the strings on the guitar you buy but its set-up with regular PRS branded 10's when it leaves the factory.

    Personally, all my PRS Electric guitars apart from my Hollowbody ii (which has 11's with a wound 3rd/G string) are all strung with regular 10-46 - same as they left the factory. With the 594, I could go to 11s but I am finding 10's are more than adequate. Keeping all 10's though does make it easier for buying strings in bulk.

    Obviously PRS's website is going to give you the specs and a brief not about it. Youtube and this forum has multiple videos and threads respectively to find out more, hear from owners etc. Its a very popular model since PRS launched it as a core model in 2016 and since then has been made as both a Double and Single cut, as well as Solid, semi-hollow and Hollowbody versions. The fact that it has all these iterations must say something about its popularity and the success the model has been for PRS.
     
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  6. veinbuster

    veinbuster Freeze zone

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    I like your plan...except the waiting until next year part.
     
  7. Black Plaid

    Black Plaid just another Alan

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    Order it now and you might get it by next year!

    Awesome that Les signed the guitar.
     
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  8. pallajt

    pallajt New Member

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    I just got a 2019 594 less than a month ago and it is awesome - you've made an excellent choice. The 10 Top is purely aesthetic and has to do w/the degree and consistency of the figuring in the wood. If you want it, go for it. If not, don't. I've always loved and admired all the beautiful tops PRS does, but the 594 I got is actually a gold top and I LOVE it, speaking strictly in terms of aesthetics. And because it's not a hi-grade top (in terms of figuring) the cost is a bit lower which I don't mind one bit.
     
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  9. Revelation

    Revelation New Member

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    Thanks for your input. Is the single or double cut 594 more popular do you think?
     
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  10. alantig

    alantig SSBMA

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    As others have noted, the 10-top designation is purely aesthetic. It's best if you can actually see the top - there are some non-10s that are outstanding, and some 10-tops that rise to Wood Library or Artist Pack level.

    BTW, if you don't want to store that Les Paul for another two years, I've already graduated college, and I don't believe you gave me anything.
     
  11. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    Hard to know; you see more of the DC in stores.

    Even though the CU24 is supposed to be the ‘quintessential’ PRS, a lot of folks later felt that the McCarty was, in fact, the ‘quintessential’ PRS. That torch may have been passed to the 594, since it was released to rave reviews in the trades and on forums, and has been lauded with praise over and over.

    I found the model so sweet in the hand, and so good-sounding, that after getting one, I got a second one within a few weeks.

    So now I have two, one with Soapbars, the other with Humbuckers, and I absolutely love them both (both are also DCs because I have a limited run SC that I love).

    The SC has a little more low mid oomph, but I’m very happy with my DCs; the smart thing to do would be to play both before buying.

    Because this is the PRS Forum, pics are required (kinda). Here’s my ‘bucker 594 with a ten top; this was part of a Wood Library run. It’s a one piece top (doesn’t sound any different from a two piece top) in a color called Black Gold.

    [​IMG]

    And the Soapbar version, also in Black Gold (because I’m a complete sucker for this color guitar); this is also a ten top:

    [​IMG]

    The guitars are Core, and compete with my Private Stock models for sheer wonderfulness.
     
    #11 LSchefman, Aug 14, 2019
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2019
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  12. pallajt

    pallajt New Member

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    If I had to guess I would say the double cut, but again that's just a guess. I believe the body is a bit thicker on the singlecut, so keep that in mind as well. In addition to the 594, I have two SE Zach Myers signatures (singlecut) which I also love. Here's a pic of my goldtop. Something about the gold against the two-tone wood on the side/back just knocks my socks off.

    [​IMG]
     
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  13. Mozzi

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

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    I think the Custom 24 will be forever considered the quintessential PRS because of its history and the fact that it was the guitar that PRS launched with back in 1985. According to PRS, I believe it continues to be the best selling guitar - which may include all the variations and tiers but its also the only PRS that is available at all tiers from SE to S2 to CE and of course the Core line too.

    There is no disputing though that the 594 launched to rave reviews and has become an instant favourite since it was added to the core line in 2016. Of course there will be a 'few' vocal about how a Les Paul is better or sounds better when A/B'd and mostly because it has Gibson on the headstock rather than actually listening with their ears. Sound though can be subjective but I still think there are a lot that say the LP is better because of what they see as they offer no valid reason - just that its 'better'.

    That though also is a reason why I don't think the 594 can be considered the quintessential PRS because its a guitar based on another brands most iconic and historic importance. Its why I don't think the Silver Sky could ever be consider the quintessential PRS. Both are guitars that are based on guitars that are incredibly difficult to find and if you do, the price point is incredibly high. Its PRS making guitars that are no longer available to the masses consistently and without all the 'issues' that many old guitars have - essentially giving us those highly sought after instruments but with the quality and attention to detail we associate with PRS.

    I still see guitars like the Custom 22 and even the McCarty as PRS making guitars that are more on the Les Paul side - a PRS but with a sprinkling of LP with the McCarty more of a dollop of LP flavouring. PRS Custom 24's were the guitar in the middle between a Fender and a Gibson and with the introduction of the Custom 22 in 91 (I believe), that guitar was a PRS with a bit more LP in flavour because of the 22 frets and position of the HB's - the McCarty then added more LP with fixed bridge and thicker bodies. Each has been a step more towards the LP from the quintessential PRS Custom 24.

    Maybe that's just the way I see things but to me, the Quintessential PRS will always be the Custom 24 as its the guitar that launched and built up the PRS brand before they added the other models.
     
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  14. Dead&Co

    Dead&Co New Member

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  15. Revelation

    Revelation New Member

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    I have to wait until next year to purchase the guitar as I have to pay off a couple of bills that I have a monthly payments on with no interest.

    The Les Paul has a thicker tone over the 594 and if you want a Les Paul sound, then that is the guitar to buy. I look at the 594 as a guitar Gibson might have come out with if they wanted to modernize the LP. There are so many nice improvements on the 594 including the headstock that keeps the B string in tuner better, to the fret wire and ultimate craftsmanship. Even in the single cut the 594 is not as bottom heavy as the LP.
     
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  16. markd21

    markd21 New Member

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    Great choice, and a great guitar. I held off on getting a 594 for quite a while. I didn't like the look of the DC body with the switch on the upper horn. Eventually I succumbed, and that 594 is the guitar that I play the most. I got a 10-top because I liked the color and it was available without waiting. Mine is a 2019 Blood Orange. Here's a couple pics....

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I really dig the guitar, but I am beginning to contemplate sticking a 57/08 in the bridge. Time has just proven that I prefer that pickup.....
     
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  17. Revelation

    Revelation New Member

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    Wow that is a beautiful color. What is the difference in tone with the 57/08 pickup vs the stock one? Curious if you didn't care for the DC initially why you didn't about going for the SC. I initially wanted the DC, but with losing my Paul I am thinking about going SC instead. But then my Carvin 575 has a single cut. Thankfully I have until next summer to pick out the color and decide on SC or DC.
     
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  18. markd21

    markd21 New Member

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    Thanks!! The 57/08 has just a hair more output. It works with my style better. I like the 58/15LT, but I have to adjust for it - no big deal, really - I just feel that the 594 would be beyond perfection with a 57/08 in the bridge. The ONLY reason I didn't get a SC is because there weren't any immediately available in any finishes with tops that I found appealing compared to this DC. It came down to 100% aesthetics. That's it. I saw this one and got wood.
     
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  19. bodia

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

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    Great choice for your first! Welcome to the forum.
     
  20. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    Can’t argue with that, but I’ll explain what I meant.

    I think the quintessence of PRS isn’t so much a single guitar model, as a process of constant growth and learning.

    At the moment, the 594 is my candidate for most successful example of how well their process works. Sounds vintage, feels modern. So it gets my ‘quintessence award’.
     

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