Looking to upgrade my SE with 85/15 S pickups to the 57/08.


New Member
May 18, 2023
I’m a lefty so my choices for PRS models are limited to just one, the base model PRS SE. I am very thankful that even the base model PRS is still a very nice guitar. However, it would be nice if they offered a few of their other models in left handed. Having said that, I decided to do the next best thing and make my own upgraded model and install some 57/08 pickups in my SE. I’m considering doing the upgrade myself and was wondering if anyone has done this themselves and how difficult it was? I really have only read one review left by someone saying that they had a hard time because none of the wires were labeled, there were no instructions, and they couldn’t find any guidance on PRS’s website to help with the installation. Has anyone done this upgrade themselves, if so, was it very difficult or were there any things to consider when making this change yourself? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
Easy job and plenty of resources and users around here willing to help..Get a good soldering iron is my best advice.

It would be nice if PRS included a color code with the pickups. It's easy enough to figure out, but would be nice for the price and especially for new users. Give it a shot. If it doesn't work out you can always take to a tech.
Easy peasy, get your soldering iron out, protect your guitar (pickups are heavy and sharp. Learned that the hard way) and if they are 3 conductor you are in for a very easy install job. The hot and ground are in the thick wire, the "mesh" being ground. The split is the white one, and goes to the push-pull.
Thanks for the responses. I have a background in computers as an engineer by day and have been building computers for decades including the ones that required a soldering iron to build and work on, so I’m very comfortable with a soldering iron in my hands. I was pretty confident I could do it, but after reading that one review I thought well I’d better ask a group of people that has done it first. I’ll get them ordered in the next few weeks and hopefully I’ll be updating my post with good news that it worked out and sounds great. Thanks again for the input, I’m looking forward to getting this little project going as soon as possible.
I've been soldering successfully since the Heathkit era, have a high end iron and even then I was surprised by how much I didn't know about installing pickups when I watched this:

I've only had my 57/08s for less than a week, and my impression has been:
Bridge: that's really nice
Neck: OMG
Last edited:
Thanks, I signed up for it and will watch them. I noticed that PRS has made several new models for lefties this year. When I bought mine there was one model in two colors. Now there have several other colors and a couple different setups that weren’t available to me back then. I’m kind of thinking about buying another PRS before I upgrade this one, I have wanted the green version for a couple of years and now it’s available in the 24-08 model with the 85/15 S TCI pickups. I think I’m going to buy it. I’m not sure if there is a big difference between the regular 85/15 S and the TCIs but I think I’m going to give it a shot.
Every guitar is different, regardless of the pickups. 57/08’s are my favorite humbuckers. Use them.