Thoughts on Sound of S2 Studio

Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by pinstripeninjas, Jan 25, 2019.

  1. pinstripeninjas

    pinstripeninjas New Member

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    A couple days ago I picked up an S2 Studio with the hopes of adding a versatile "super Strat" to my collection. And I must say, everything about the guitar is fantastic--except it doesn't sound like a Strat. Is it possible that I may have a defective pickup, bad wiring or something?

    I love the 4th position on a Strat, mainly for that silky quack that leaps out of the guitar, but my S2 sounds dull and boxy in that position. I've also noticed that there is no hum when engaging the single coil tap in that position, but it does hum with the tap off. Why would that have any impact on the 4th position since the bridge pickup isn't used in that configuration?

    I left the setup as is out of the box, and perhaps new strings and some pickup height adjustments could balance things out. I've just been hesitant to go crazy changing things since I'm considering returning it.

    I realize this is entirely based on subjective assessments, but I read so much online about this being like a Strat with even more capabilities. I really don't hear the connection. My question to everyone is--could something be wrong with the guitar or am I insane? Has anyone else experienced this? Thanks!
     
  2. toothace

    toothace We've got, you know, armadillos in our trousers.

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    Um...it's NOT a strat...
     
  3. shimmilou

    shimmilou Established in 1963

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    Sounds like it is mis-wired. My S2 Studio came mis-wired from the factory, the bridge pup was on in all 5 switch positions. It was an easyfix, just moved a couple of wires, and voila, great sounds! I will post the wiring diagrams later.
     
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  4. Bowtiefanatc

    Bowtiefanatc #NeverGibson

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    Agreed, I don't think it was ever conceived to sound like a strat. It should sound like a very versatile guitar IMHO
     
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  5. pinstripeninjas

    pinstripeninjas New Member

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    Thanks! That would be great if I could see your wiring diagram.
     
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  6. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    It’s not a Strat, and with a maple top, mahogany body, no route in the body for a plastic pickguard, and very different pickups and hardware, it’s not supposed to be a Strat, and could never sound like one with so many differences.

    It’s not like PRS doesn’t know how to make a Strat, cf. Silver Sky.

    If you want a Strat, perhaps you might look at a Silver Sky.
     
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  7. shimmilou

    shimmilou Established in 1963

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    Wiring, as it came from the factory:
    [​IMG]

    Corrected wiring:
    [​IMG]
     
  8. shimmilou

    shimmilou Established in 1963

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    The switch terminals colored in black are the wipers for each section of the switch. Note that the bridge pup was wired such that it was connected to the volume pot in all switch positions, and one of the wiper terminals was unused. The red wire, jumpering the “B” and “D” sections, could be removed, and the wire from the middle pickup moved to the “D” section, leaving the “B” section unused. I actually left the red wire as it came, the function is the same.

    This is the way that it should be wired (see below), as there is no need for the extra wiring connecting the "B" and "D" sections. The Bridge and neck pups each use one section of the switch, why would the middle pup need 2 sections? lol

    [​IMG]
     
    #8 shimmilou, Jan 26, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2019
  9. pinstripeninjas

    pinstripeninjas New Member

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    Thanks so much for taking the time to post the diagrams. My wiring is the same as your factory image with one exception--the volume wire is connected to the correct spot.

    As for the second wire (the black one), do I need to move it so that it matches your diagram connecting the "A" and "B" sections? Thanks again for helping out!
     
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  10. shimmilou

    shimmilou Established in 1963

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    NP, glad to do it. Yep, sounds like your bridge pup was wired into the circuit in all switch positions (black wire jumping the volume to the bridge pup), so your position 4 would be all three pups on at the same time, poor sound. I bet that correcting your wiring will now give you sounds closer to what you are looking for in position 4, and position 2 with bridge split.

    Mine sounds amazing, a great variety of sounds, just a wonderful guitar. Here's a pic, you should post one of yours. :)

    [​IMG]
     
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  11. MoggyMel

    MoggyMel Not My Boyfriend's PRS

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    Love my S2 Studio, but it does not sound like a Strat nor did I expect it to sound like one. I never saw any claims stating a S2 Studio did sound like one so whoever provided that info was misinformed or does not know what a Strat sounds like. Glad you got the wiring situation figured out - that would have made me crazy.
     
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  12. dcm_guitar

    dcm_guitar New Member

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    I've played an S2 Studio back to back with my American Elite Strat so I could make an informed comparison. My take away is that the S2 Studio I played DOES have the Strat "quack"; particularly in position #2. Not as much as my Strat but definitely there.

    I like the D-style single coils in the Studio (and Vela) more than the Fender single coils. They're (to my ear) a little less sparkly than the Fender pickups with more depth (not just darker, but a tighter and more defined bottom end).

    I wish I had an S2 studio, but with an American Elite Strat, an American Deluxe Tele and a Vela I simply couldn't justify the purchase. If I hadn't already had the Vela I ABSOLUTELY would have bought the S2 Studio. I REALLY, REALLY liked that guitar. Really.
     
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  13. CSurieux

    CSurieux New Member

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    Hi,

    I just checked your fixed diagram in my new S2 and I found one missing cable as pointed in following picture.
    I can't understand what is the effect ? Should I add it ? Or send back the guitar ?
    [​IMG]
    As I am not sure my pictures reach this post, the missing cable is the small black one in your corrected schema between position 4 and 2 on the bottom right side of the Super switch.
    [​IMG]

    Best
    CS
     
    #13 CSurieux, Feb 19, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2019
  14. shimmilou

    shimmilou Established in 1963

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    I can’t see your pics, they have to be hosted on a publicly accessable site such as flickr, then you can copy and paste the link.

    If all other wiring is the same as my “corrected” diagram, that jumper that you refer to is not necessary. But I would like to see your pics to be certain what you have.
     
  15. CSurieux

    CSurieux New Member

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    Thanks for answer anyway.
    My pictures are on flicker and a publicly shared OneDrive.
    May be some delay is necessary.
    My thinking is that this cable is of no usage but I need confirmation.

    Thanks.
     
  16. shimmilou

    shimmilou Established in 1963

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    In the "Corrected Wiring" diagram, note that the middle pup connects to the position 2 terminal in the upper right switch section, then from there the red wire jumpers to position 4 terminal on the lower right switch section, which puts the middle pup in the circuit in switch positions 2 and 4 as it should, so the little black jumper wire in the lower right section is not needed. If the rest of your wiring is exactly like my "Corrected" version, with the exception of the jumper in the lower right section, you should be good.

    Edit:
    I copied your "IMG" and was able to view your pic, and yes the jumper you have the arrow pointing to is not necessary, if all other wiring is the same. Are you sure that the wiper terminal of the upper right section is connected as in my diagram?
     
    #16 shimmilou, Feb 19, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2019
  17. CSurieux

    CSurieux New Member

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    Thanks, yes it was the only difference.
     
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  18. CSurieux

    CSurieux New Member

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    One last question : how did you adjusted your pickups on your S2 Studio ?
    PRS site says
    "The pickups on your new instrument are fully adjustable by turning the height adjustment screws at each end of the pickup. With the high and low E strings (E and G strings for the Electric Bass) depressed at the last fret the measurement should about 2.5/32 (5/64”) on the treble side and about 3/32” on the bass side of both pickups. You may season to taste if you wish."
    For the type D single coil I have a better sound when I set them very near the string, less than 2.5/32... but when very near, especially the middle one, it's more difficult to pick. I have to adapt my way of picking strings, it is very different from my usual 2 humbuckers where there is plenty space between the humbuckers. Certainly similar to a stratocaster .... but I have a Telecaster ;)
    I will test various distance for these Type D pickups. Any reco ?
     
  19. dogrocketp

    dogrocketp I drank the PRS kool aid, and it was tasty!

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    My 2 D types are set farther from the strings than yours, with the bass side lower than the treble. I used the Lindy Fralin method. Adjust by ear, not with a ruler. Do the neck pickup first. When that sounds the way you want, then do the middle pickup. The bridge pickup is ever so slightly closer to the strings than the other 2. It gives a more balanced sound when split, and a slight volume boost when played alone. I usually favor the neck or neck/middle combo. I use NYXL 9-42’s for maximum bite. The Humbucker is used mostly for soloing. The middle/bridge is used when I play with an organist to get more cut through. The amp also influences the pickup settings. I use a 2 channel 30 combo, or a Tech 21 Trademark 60 If I have more than one flight of stairs to climb for the gig. Like all PRS I have, moving the pickups can completely change the sound of the guitar.
     
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  20. shimmilou

    shimmilou Established in 1963

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    Same here, by ear, and low enough that the pick doesn't hit the pups. IMO, you lose sound quality and sustain, if the pups are too close to the strings. You might get more volume, but not as good sound.
     

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