Should Looks Matter or just tone?

Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by 88prs, Oct 11, 2019.

  1. 11top

    11top Cousin Eddie's cousin

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    I don’t find a “marked” variation between PRS USA guitars. That’s not to say I haven’t played a few I didn’t like as well, but that is not the norm. In that rare case, it’s usually the set up or pickups that need to be changed (or it’s not my model of choice).
     
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  2. Boogie

    Boogie SuperD

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    Which is why the divorce rate is so high.
     
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  3. Mozzi

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

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    I must admit, I haven't heard a significant difference in any PRS I have tried but I also haven't tried hundreds. The ones I tried were all in the same ball park area and, as I said, the subtle differences were not enough to be able to say that one was significantly better (or worse) than any of the others. They all sounded great and I would happily take home any. Not one jumped out as being the one (or the one to avoid either) and it was easy to just pick the one I liked the look of most instead of which tone was the best.

    I am not denying that there could be a PRS out there that isn't up to the standard of the rest, doesn't sound quite as good (whether that's due to a poor set up, old strings or just a 'bad' US made PRS) but I couldn't categorically say 1 was significantly better (or worse) to my ears. They all seemed to play as well as each other and feel alike too. Maybe someone else will find they had a strong pull to one over any of the others but to me, the differences were like trying to decide which cookie to pick when they all look to have the same number of choc chips - you know it doesn't matter because they are all basically the same and any differences will be subtle in the taste, all going to taste great...

    If you do opt to buy online, you can always send a duff one back if it still sounds off after a set-up but I wouldn't be concerned about buying a Core PRS online based on the way it looks and not worrying that it will sound significantly worse than any other if I actually visited the shop to A/B them. If others feel the need to go round all the shops they can to try and find the one that sounds the best to them, so be it - that's entirely up to them. All I am saying is that I feel confident to order a PRS online based purely on the way it looks knowing that when it arrives, I will be happy with the tones.
     
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  4. Alnus Rubra

    Alnus Rubra Loving nature’s wonders

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    Certainly Darrell Braun speaks very highly of PRS’ fit and finish in comparison to other US made guitars.

    It would seem that the staff at Maryland do everything in their power to ensure a consistent, high quality product leaves the factory.
     
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  5. Mozzi

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

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    I watched his comparison to the Les Paul and most recently a strat too - still think its criminal to cover up the natural beauty of the maple with a gold top.

    I don't know anyone at all that can categorically say with experience and proof, that PRS have the QC aspect pretty much nailed. I would say 'fit and finish', but I believe that its their QC at numerous stages that makes the biggest difference. If there is too much glue seeping out around the neck pocket for example - something I have seen on Gibsons - its much easier to deal with it before it moves on to the next phase. If you only notice it when you QC it before casing, then its a much bigger problem. You have 3 choices 1 - scrap it, 2 - let it go out or 3 - strip the guitar down, remove all the finish, clean up the glue and then refinish, fit all the parts back on etc In other words, that guitar has more than double the work hours - Its just not cost effective to scrap or fix so let it go out.

    PRS on the other hand wouldn't let that guitar go through to finishing until that was cleaned up properly - it may take an extra 5-10 mins but the point is, any issue is picked up early enough to actually do something about it and, if every one through the whole process has done their QC checks, by the time it reaches casing, that check should be nothing but a formality. Good QC throughout a build is much more cost effective than just at the end - unless you are willing to let some go out with issues because its more cost effective to do that than to scrap or sort out....
     
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  6. MarshallMike

    MarshallMike New Member

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    I own two Satin finish S2s ( a '17 Standard 24 and a '18 Singlecut ) and two Gibson LPs ( '19 Classic and a '19 traditional ). Of the 4, two had issues from the factory. Can you guess which ones?

    I will leave a little space for you to guess..





    The two S2s!!!

    The 24 Standard mysteriously has a spot on the back of the neck which the finish has flaked off. It showed up about 6-8 months after purchase. Not rubbed off from playing but flaked off. It does not affect play but resale value on that guitar just went down the toilet.
    The Singlecut had a bad "G" string saddle. Had to file it down to make it stop buzzing.

    No one could convince me that PRS is superior to Gibson. Each company has employees and I think it comes down to that. Any employee on a given day could do a bad job. I don't think either company has a lower standard compared to the other.
    My LPs are flawless in every way. Although, one of them was purchased after returning the first one ( a Studio ) because it had a completely loose truss rod-no room for adding a bit of relief. I'm actually glad that happened because I ended up getting my favorite guitar of all, My LP traditional. I spent more cash but wow was it worth it!

    I'm not a PRS hater because of these issues. I understand that sometimes some not up to par instruments can get through.

    IMHO, I think quality control issues could be sorted out much better if the retailers did their job right!
    Really, they are the final QC checkers and should take that job seriously instead of just passing on sub par guitars to the public.
     
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  7. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    We’re lucky; getting a fine sounding PRS is as simple as ordering one, so for those who like good-lookers, you’re not going to be stuck with something that doesn’t also sound really nice.

    However, there are still those rare guitars that have an unusually good voice that simply cannot be resisted. I have a few of them, and that’s the only reason I have more than one electric guitar right now, instead of a Moog One and some other studio nicknacks I have the hots for.
     
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  8. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    My next PRS will be a gold top. I sure hope you don’t come and arrest me!
     
  9. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    PRS will take care of any finish issues under the warranty, no question. All you have to do is ask!
     
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  10. Mozzi

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

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    As long as you don't try and have all that checking and greening too....
     
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  11. ScottR

    ScottR If nobody saw it, it didn't happen.

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    PREACH! Brotha PREACH! :D
     
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  12. alantig

    alantig SSBMA

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    Baptist dictionaries are very direct - they don't dance around anything.
     
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  13. alantig

    alantig SSBMA

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    You find a Markie difference.
     
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  14. Alnus Rubra

    Alnus Rubra Loving nature’s wonders

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    They’re a book you can really get immersed in!
     
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  15. CVS

    CVS Not so new member

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    I go for tone, quality and playability. Good looking guitars that don't have those 3 attributes will just sit in a guitar case or hang on a wall.
     
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  16. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    No worries, that drives me nuts!
     
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  17. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    Very true, and the setup is so important.

    I find the tone differences from guitar to guitar within a given model run are usually more of the “this one seems a little warmer,” or “this sustains a tiny bit more” variety.

    Every so often, though, one comes along that hits my sweet spot a bit more. I refer to those as magic, but the thing is, magic for me might not be magic for someone else.

    I’m perfectly happy to get one that isn’t magic; a nice example of a model I like is just fine.
     
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  18. Mozzi

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

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    That's my experience too - also maybe a subtle difference in the undertones too - but nothing that particularly stands out as 'better' - just monor nuances that make each a bit different...

    I admit that my experience with PRS in terms of quantity is extremely limited compared to many here that must of tried hundreds over the years and in terms of age of the guitars - all my experience (at least relevant) has come with new PRS guitars from 2016 onwards. I certainly wouldn't rely on any experience from over 20yrs ago when I really only had 'cheap' guitars as a reference. Its entirely possible that I have been lucky in that the guitars I have tried are consistent and not a 'bad' one amongst them but when many others who have many more guitars and tried many many more over the years also seem to have the same experiences, its pretty safe to assume that finding a 'bad' one - one that is bad even after a set-up - is extremely rare...
     
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  19. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    No disclaimers needed! You know your stuff, and with the guitars you have, you can certainly claim lots of valid experience. Moreover, your experience is every bit as valid as someone who’s played a ton of them.

    I like the new models from the last ten years or so best of all PRSes, I’ve been a PRS guy for 28 years, have sure owned/played a bunch, and all of them were at the very least, excellent guitars.

    There’s wonderful consistency.
     
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