PRS Hollowbody I, II, 594 questions

Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by SonicBlue, Feb 24, 2019.

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Best Hollowbody for versatility, while nailing Phish/Trey tones?

  1. PRS Hollowbody I

    2 vote(s)
    12.5%
  2. PRS Hollowbody II

    8 vote(s)
    50.0%
  3. PRS Hollowbody II 594

    8 vote(s)
    50.0%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. SonicBlue

    SonicBlue New Member

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    I've been looking for comparison videos and reading all over online but still have some questions I hope someone can help answer.

    I was seriously considering a Languedoc G2 but decided that a PRS HB I, II or HBII-594 is more versatile, readily available and most likely cheaper, even with great wood options.
    1. Why do hollowbodies seem to run 11's and sometimes with wound G? I'd be dropping to 10's with a plain G so I could bend easier.
    2. Other than aesthetics of the maple back/sandwich of the PRS Hollowbody II, is there a real difference between Hollowbody I and II? Any upsides to the mahogany back on the HB I?
    3. Why do the PRS HB Piezo models not have coil taps and why does the McCarty HB II not have a piezo option? It seems like you could easily have both.
    4. Why is the HB II Piezo $6k when it doesn't have overly exotic woods? It seems overpriced by about $2k compared to other PRS models.
    5. Is there any downside of the 24.594" scale length on a hollowbody? I was considering a Languedoc G2 as I love the tones from Trey/Phish and they're all 25.5" scale length and I hoped to get that Phish tones with my PRS hollowbody - which could end up being a 594.
    Thanks a ton in advance for your expertise!
     
  2. Callan

    Callan hack guitarist..

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    Just a guess, but I don't think you can fit the push-pull knobs of the 594 and the piezo board into the same space, so that might rule the core options . Of course you can go PS and get mini toggles or other custom electronics for $$$$

    I run 10-52's on my HBii, I believe the wound G gives better acoustic tones, but I've not yet tried one.

    Why the price? Because it is.. some things in this world don't make sense, but I'm sure it comes to the construction method and/or volume of sales.
    There looks to be a lot more 594's sold compared with anything hollowbody.

    If you had to pick piezo or coil splits, which one is more important to you?
     
  3. Mozzi

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

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    Part of the extra cost maybe because they have a carved maple top and back as well as have to carve all that mahogany away from the guitar too. The maple is also carved underneath as well and I bet its a pain to do the wiring without having any 'cavity covers'. From what I understand, the Mahogany starts off as a 'slab' like a standard Guitar and the middle is carved out to leave just the side walls rather than shape the sides out of thin Mahogany like they would do for an acoustic. With the Hollowbody II's, they obviously have more Flame maple than a normal guitar and it looks like they use pieces that come from the same part of the same tree as the top matches the back. My HB2 has a one piece top and back and its clear these two pieces were next to each other from the same tree. So not only are you getting a carved Maple top (like a Core), you are also getting a carved maple back which will require a lot more sanding and finishing than a plain, flat mahogany back. I don't know if the flame maple is more expensive but all the extra carving etc is bound to add up.

    The difference between the models is pretty well known. The HB1 is an all mahogany body, flat back with a carved maple top, the HB2 is mahogany sandwich between carved maple top/back which is also the case for the HB594. The 594 has a shorter scale length and a pattern Vintage neck carve as well as the 594 coil splits and the two piece bridge where as the HB2 has a 25" scale, Pattern neck carve and the adjustable stoptail Piezo Bridge.

    I don't think PRS are making the HB1 anymore - at least not as a 6 string as only the 12 string is shown on their website. The new HB2's (both the original HB2 and 594 version) are shipping with 58/15 LT's. If you want a Piezo, at the moment, the only option is the original HB2 but you won't get coil splits - maybe too much with the Piezo circuit and controls for this. If you want the option to split the coils, then the HB594 is the way to go.

    There is 'no' downside to having a 24.594" scale length - its just a scale length and the advantages are exactly the same as a solid electric. The 'Wound G' is generally better sounding, better tonally balanced and giving a warmer, fuller sound - often favoured by Rhythm and Jazz players and Hollowbody guitars are generally favoured by Rhythm and Jazz players. Down side is they are not as easy to bend as a plain string and tend to have a bit more 'finger' noise. There is nothing stopping you from opting to go for a plain 3rd if you want and it suits your style/needs better.
     
  4. SonicBlue

    SonicBlue New Member

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    Thanks for all of the info. I tried searching but I was using "Hollowbody" instead of "HB" - also, the variations HB2 HBII Hollowbody vs Hollow Body with a space, etc. makes it harder to search as well.

    To be honest, I never considered a hollowbody because many of the traditional hollowbody guitars look like clown shoes to me. They sound great, but if the look of something bothers you, that's a factor. Once you see Ronald McDonald with a big old Gibson hollowbody in your head it's hard to unsee. The PRS HB's are so good looking, balanced, practical and I love the tones on every video I've been able to track down, including the 3rd link Bodia just posted.

    I don't know whether a Piezo or Coil Taps are the better choice for me, but I'm leaning toward the Piezo because I have a solidbody McCarty 594 with coil taps and I have a Strat for single coil sounds. The Piezo would give me something I can't do at all with my other guitars and I do prefer the humbucker sound over single coils for hollowbodies, at least from what I've listened to.
     
  5. walrus

    walrus New Member

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    sergiodeblanc likes this.
  6. veinbuster

    veinbuster Freeze zone

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    I don’t think the variation of HB you get will make a significant difference.
    A piezo will give you a lot more range.
    I keep 10s on one and 11s on another. The guitar doesn’t care which gauge you prefer.
     
  7. SonicBlue

    SonicBlue New Member

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    My initial look into HB's started with spruce as it made sense with acoustics having a spruce top and I love how it looks and ages. There also appear to be more deals on spruce tops, at least right now.

    I got impatient and went with this HBII Piezo. I've been watching this one for a long time and I'm a sucker for natural maple flame and unique features that give character, I kept coming back to this one with it's "Marylin Monroe Freckle" and unique blonde coloring.

    I hope she sounds as good as she looks.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. Mozzi

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

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    The Piezo was a big reason I opted for a HBii as well. It offers me something I didn't already have as I already had the 58/15 LT's in my solid body double cut 594 but I still want a Hollowbody 594 too for the 'split' hollowbody tones - as well as the Pattern Vintage neck and shorter Scale length.

    I do love my HBii with Piezo and that does add something when blended in with the magnetics. I haven't run the two (Piezo and Magnetics) into separate Amps yet but you do have that option too. I am not so keen on having such a 'big' input jack area as it houses both jack inputs and the battery compartment too. I know its necessary but it takes up a sizeable strip and its not the most attractive compared to wood. Its not a major issue at all and makes up for it by having a carved flame maple back.

    Hope you enjoy yours as much as I love mine....
     
  9. danktat

    danktat Award winning tattoo artist ... Amateur guitarist

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    Look up Trey's rig on you tube. A Languedoc is no doubt a lot of his tone. But trey processes the h*ll out of his sound. I would be looking at playability in a hollow. You will certainly be able to use the feedback on just about any thin line hollowbody and still be able to keep control over it. Then it is a butt load of effects that gives him that milky, creamy tone. The woody overtones are definitely the guitar itself, but a significant chunk of the sound would be the processing between your guitar and amp.

    This was a spectacular choice. :D
     
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  10. veinbuster

    veinbuster Freeze zone

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    Excellent choice.
    Enjoy.
     
  11. bodia

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

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    Great snag!
     
  12. SonicBlue

    SonicBlue New Member

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    Thanks for the words of encouragement. There's always that moment right after you buy something where you ask yourself "What did I just do?" :) but i'm confident this will be a great guitar.

    I'll experiment with effects as I agree that a lot of his tone comes in there, but some of it is definitely hollowbody. Very hard to explain but I've listened to so many videos of others going for Trey's tone and they miss the mark unless they have a hollowbody of some kind, and even many of those can't do it.
     
  13. walrus

    walrus New Member

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    Very nice! Great looking top!
     
  14. sergiodeblanc

    sergiodeblanc Get in, loser, we’re going shopping.

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    That looks Bangin’!

    I’ll dare say that any apprehension you have will disappear upon arrival.
     
    Dan&me likes this.
  15. Outlier22

    Outlier22 New Member

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    Congrats on the purchase. That guitar is beautiful!
     
  16. pauloqs

    pauloqs PRS McCarty

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    I'll tell you what you did. You did amazing. Absolutely beautiful guitar. Regarding the choice between coil tap/split and Piezo that was brought up before, I wonder if on a HB guitar, you'd get P90-esque tones with tapped humbuckers. If so that would be a good selling point for the coil tap with the HB 594. Anyway, you can't go wrong with Piezo's in a HB. Great pickup, enjoy your amazing guitar.

    Edit: Also the guitar you just keep coming back to is always the right choice ;)
     
    dogrocketp likes this.
  17. innocent_bystander

    innocent_bystander New Member

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    I'm looking to purchase my first PRS. Was eying a HBII and a 594 Semi Hollow. Leaning towards with the HBII because of the piezo.
     
  18. SonicBlue

    SonicBlue New Member

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    Thanks a ton guys.
     
  19. Song

    Song In Nomine Dilectio

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    Congratulations on your wonderful new guitar! It's beautiful and I bet it sounds and plays great too... :D
     

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