DISCLAIMER: I'd like to share a little backstory with this one, so it may get a bit wordy. If you'd like to scroll down past the story, there will be plenty of pics and a tone report. So far, this year has been a bit of a rough one. Early in January, three days before my 36th birthday, the wife and I had to work on a Saturday morning. Per the usual, I take the dog out in the morning...about five or ten minutes before we leave for work, and the wife gets our son ready to drop him off at Grandma's. When I take the dog out, I start our cars so they can be nice and warm when everybody packs in and heads out. I always be sure to lock the cars with the remote so nobody hops in and takes off. So, the wife and boy leave about ten minutes before I do and when I head out to get into my car, I come to find it's been stolen. Now, admittedly, I had been pretty lazy and careless about not cleaning out my car regularly and my wife ALWAYS got on me about leaving my wallet in my car. Anyways, it all came to a head because that car was full of stuff. I had practice the next day so all my pedals, amps, cables, mics, stands - pretty much everything except my guitars - were in the car. Add to that my wallet (with $300 cash I had just received from selling an acoustic guitar) a check book, my entire CD collection (that one hurt) and loads of other items, it was a pretty big pill to swallow. Fast forward a couple weeks, the police find my car in a neighboring city - about 30 or 40 miles from me. It was, of course, cleaned out in terms of all my stuff with only a couple little things in there that belonged to me. The police are still working the case (our bass player works for the KCPD and works thefts, so that has been a big help) and it looks like they're close to having enough info to make an arrest. One of the people who were involved in the auto theft has also been writing fraudulent checks in my name all over town, so it's only a matter of time before they're arrested. However, as anybody can imagine, it's been incredibly stressful and has required a lot of time to correct and report all of this fraudulent activity. On the bright side, since I had insurance, they were quick to pay out a nice chunk of change so I could replace much of the stolen equipment - not as much as what was stolen, but enough to get me back in the band. ONTO THE NAGD: So, right before I sold the acoustic guitar, I saw the thread about the new SE Acoustics coming out and loved the newer designs, specifically the A50E. I showed the wife and she agreed they were absolutely beautiful and we both agreed that at the price point they were at I could get one sometime later down the road. Well, because I have the MOST AMAZING WIFE I could ever ask for, that day came sooner than later. Last Saturday, we had some errands to run early in the day. When we got back, it was time for the boy to lay down for a nap. I was cleaning up the kitchen and I turn around to see my wife holding this: The level of detail and build quality is, as expected, impeccable. The shell purfling around the body and rosette is perfect and the birds are incredibly vibrant in person. I tried to capture as much as I could in the photos, but a cell phone can only capture so much. The figuring in the mahogany on the neck and headstock is very impressive. Not to mention the very flamey sides and back - the burst is a very welcome touch, as well. And I was SUPER impressed by the inclusion of the oh-so-important felt pads beneath the strap button. I'm pretty sure these particular felt pads add a specific sonic value of resonance. I've never owned an SE acoustic, so I was also very pleased to see it came with a hard case. Everything seems to be of great quality on the case, too, with no loose hinges, handles, or fabric. I also like the little studs on the back of the case. Of course, a new guitar definitely deserves a new guitar strap. And since my lovely wife surprised me with this guitar, it was only fair she get to pick the strap. She went with the paisley strap, which I think works perfectly with the guitar. Overall, I am over the moon with this new guitar. The build quality is second to none and just reaffirms over and over again the incredible level craftsmanship and design going on at PRS. Another incredible knockout guitar at a great price-point. TONE REPORT: Now that I've had it for about a week, I've really been able to put it through it's paces both acoustically, electrically, at home, and in the band. After tuning it up, and upon the first strum, it was very clear that this is a very vocal and responsive guitar. I'm not sure if it's the new bracing system, the use of all the maple, or the combination of both, but this guitar has a projection that is very responsive to how much you put into it. Strumming open chords seem to throw themselves out of the guitar with a very airy openness to them. The harder you strum, the louder and more projected the guitar becomes, still staying very well balanced and consistent in it's overall voice. The balance of the lows, mids, and highs was also a bit surprising as I was expecting to hear more highs, considering all the maple. But everything here is very balanced with it not being too harsh on the highs and not too boomy in the lows. I very much like the overall tone to this guitar. Digging in and palm-muting, the guitars voice closes in and is, once again, very responsive to your picking hand. The low notes tighten up and the percussive response of the guitar's body resonates very nicely. Plugged in, the Fishman system seems to brighten up the sound a bit. Not too bright, by any means, but I did go ahead and dial back the tone knob in the sound hole of the guitar just a touch. I play through a little Bugera AC60 acoustic guitar amplifier. In addition to the standard tone controls, the amp has a few different on-board effects (reverb, chorus, and delay) which I don't use too much, but it was nice to add some color to the tone of the guitar. The amp was then ran directly to the PA for the band setting. In the mix, this guitar totally had it's own place and voice in the mix. While it does add some more highs when plugged in, it still very much maintains it's airy, open voice, giving a perfect backing for songs like Blue on Black, While My Guitar Gently Weeps, and sounded particularly good on Business Time by Flight of the Concords (if anybody knows that one). I am absolutely LOVING this guitar right now and, even with the rough start to the year, cannot help but feel like the luckiest man in the world right now. Having somebody who just wants to make your darker days brighter, bring a smile to your face, and just remind you that you're loved is the truest blessing. I cannot help but feel humbled and thankful to have such a sweet, beautiful, loving person in my life. Anyways, I warned y'all it was going to be wordy. I hope you all find this information helpful and get the chance to try one of these soon!!! PEACE!!!