Why are SE guitars so good?

Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by FennRx, Jan 9, 2014.

  1. gball

    gball New Member

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    If they are not for you then that is one thing, but it's hard to dismiss the products out of hand as many (including me) feel the SE line is every bit a PRS. I'd put my SE245 up against any of the dozen or so Les Pauls I have owned over the years, including the one that I have now.
     
  2. HANGAR18

    HANGAR18 What Would Evel Knievel Do?

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    A very long time ago, back when I was young, thin and handsome, a Lotus or an Epiphone was all I could ever hope for in an electric guitar. I couldn't tell the difference beccause that's just where I was in my natural progression of guitar ownership. But now, my standards have increased, I'm more demanding and I can really notice the difference between my USA CU24 and the former $450.00 import guitars I once owned. Back then, I wasn't settling for "good enough", I simply had the right guitar for me at that time. Today, we have all the bases covered with the PRS lines. For some, an SE is the right guitar for them right now, for others the S2 line and for old guys like me who make more money than they did 30 years ago and can tell the difference, the PRS USA core line is the right choice for me right now. I wish they had guitars as good as the SE line back when I was young!
     
  3. FennRx

    FennRx PRS Convert

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    There was a time when I would have agreed. Even now I'll say that I don't like epis. Lol

    but the SEs are different. I've been playing for 20 years and my main guitars are Gibson custom shop LPs. I know what quality is. And I'm telling ya, my SE c24 is a fantastic instrument regardless of where it was made. The fact is that import guitars are getting better. Squier is building great teles these days. Slap better pups in one anod you have a keeper for far less than an American Std. The USA companies should take note.
     
  4. markie

    markie 11Top's personal Chauffeur

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    Rock the *** on Swede!
    ............... The Swede has stated that Korean PRS are not sh*t, they are just not his thing. The Guitar is not for you. I get that. You are not a "Fan" of "Slave Labor" I truly get that. It seems our world is totally in favor of said "Slave Labor", so we can enjoy marginally cheaper products. I disagree, but I get where they are coming from. It's all warm & fuzzy until your own Industry disappears! Then everyone looks around & says WTF just happened to my job. Prolly could have done without the Pregnant Mary comment though.
     
  5. rugerpc

    rugerpc A♥ hoards guitars ♥A
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    Setting aside your political reasons for disliking outsourced manufacturing, I think you are missing the point of why these entry level guitars are made where they are made. It's all about offering a reasonable product at a price point beginner and young artists can afford. If the only guitars available were $2K+ American or European models, the beginning guitarist wouldn't have a chance in Hell of getting their hands on one when they most need it - when they are young and the learning is best. It takes time and money to build a guitar to the quality and finish level of a core line Maryland made PRS, or even a Gibson, Taylor, Martin or Fender. You just aren't going to see them offered new, or even used in good shape, for the price point the average kid needs to see.

    You may not like it, but Fender, Gibson and PRS are furthering the development of young players by offering valid, workable entry points. No sane parent on the planet is going to plunk down Kilobuck$ for little Johnny or Sally to try out guitar when there is no guarantee that they will stick with it long enough to warrant that kind of outlay.

    You have your preferences, we all do. But please stop raining on others' parades. The MexiStrats, Epiphones, Squires and SEs have a valuable and important role to play in nurturing young talent.
     
  6. markie

    markie 11Top's personal Chauffeur

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    Good point Ruger.............
     
  7. rednefceleb

    rednefceleb New Member

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    Japan makes better guitars than America, unless you want to buy a Custom Shop-overpriced plank.
     
  8. jimfisher

    jimfisher Guitar Geezer

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    The MexiStrats, Epiphones, Squires and SEs have a valuable and important role to play in nurturing young talent.

    Which is essentially why Carlos Santana talked Paul into developing the entire SE line to begin with. I have/had a bunch of really nice PRSi over the years but my go-to gigging guitar is my SE EG over my Hollowbody and McCarty. Why....it plays and sounds so good and never goes out of tune!

    Jim
     
  9. Duffy

    Duffy New Member

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    Late at night here, with peace of mind, and everything quiet these words bring to me, out of the shade of the distant past, the words of the Eric Burdon song (The Animals), "When I Was Young". What a great song. He still sings it.

    Thanks for bringing back that welcome memory of a blues song largely and long forgotten.
     
  10. jmacphee9

    jmacphee9 New Member

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    Worth noting, alot of lives have been changed, either as a listener or a player, by Chinese or Korean guitars. For one, nirvana changed everything for me and all that took was a fender mustang and one extremely special individual. Great music can be made on cheap or expensive guitars.
     
  11. Duffy

    Duffy New Member

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    True.
     
  12. Chiliphil1

    Chiliphil1 New Member

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    I'm late coming in here but I agree the SE guitars are incredible! I had a cu24 and when I bought it I took a few hours and played many guitars that day and I liked all of them UNTIL I played the SE then nothing else compared. I made the mistake of playing a Gibson after I had played the SE and I sat it right back down and thought, wow I can't believe Gibson has come to this.. I walked out with my SE that day. Unfortunately hard times forced me to sell the SE a few months after I had gotten it but I have been dreaming of another since then, I was finally able to do it but this time I got an s2 cu24 and I am ecstatic, these are truly amazing guitars they just don't have the bling factor of the core line or even the SE but I think they are much better playing guitars than the SE line the only thing is that at least to my ear the pickups are not nearly as hot in the s2 as they are in the SE, but that's easy to fix with a bit more gain on the amp.. I think my next buy will be an SE245 but for now my s2 makes me happy.
     
  13. mojo1fan

    mojo1fan New Member

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    I've owned a slew of guitars over the years, including a Custom 24, Custom 22, EG HSS, CE 24. After playing in working bands for many years as well as working in a couple of music stores, I hung it up about 10 years ago. The only guitar I kept was an old Japanese Fender with a Warmoth neck.

    Back in March I was driving back to Texas from Tennessee and stopped in a GC in Arlington. They had a used Santana SE (the old style) for $299. I was blown away at how well it felt and played. I have since grabbed a used SE Singlecut trem for $349 from eBay and would have no problem at all with it being my main guitar when/if I ever start gigging again. It is incredible how well they are made for the price point.
     
    #73 mojo1fan, Jan 25, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2015
  14. Duffy

    Duffy New Member

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    I have a few PRS SE's myself. My first one (I still have it) is a Singlecut Tremolo antique sunburst. It is super beautiful. I got if used in brand new mint condition for 200 out the door. I really made out on that one. I have put Grover 406C mini locking tuners on it and I really like them. I'm going to put some on some of my other SE's.

    I have a Standard, Santana, Tremonti Custom, and two Custom 24's, all SE's. My last Custom 24 is a beautifully matched spectacular one that I picked out about a short time ago when Sweetwater was selling them at Thanksgiving (Black Friday) for 398 new. Can you believe that? What great guitars.
     
  15. DHW

    DHW New Member

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    Outsourced production is built to specs and tolerances. If you give them sloppy specs with loose tolerances then you will get that in the end product and you will have to hunt for the few that come together just right. If you give them exacting specs with tight tolerances that is what you will get. My wife plays the violin and some of the very very VERY best instruments come out of China today. Even the companies outsourcing their production and the "private labels" tend to come from China from a variety of makers. It's not that the craftsmanship is any better than itally, USA, germany, ect at all. The craftsmanship is the same because they have the skills and the specs and tolerances and the QC ensures they are met. They prefer these instruments because they can put superior wood and finishes into the instruments and not have them cost tens of thousands of dollars. The companies care about producing a quality product and they give their customers the most bang for the buck by going there to have them built. That's a good thing for the consumer but a bad thing for the craftsmen in countries with far higher cost of living. I'd still contend that it is a huge plus for music overall.

    Then you have companies that want to hit a price point so they can sell volume... These companies can be stanley tools for their walmart lines or it can be a fender or gibson sort of company. Their cheapest stuff will have the loosest specs and loosest tolerances which will result in crappy stuff being made. As the price point goes up the tolerances should get tighter. If they do not then it is easy to identify the company as greedy(moreso when there are investors involved).

    I own 2 SE guitars currently. They were last of their model year, on deep discount clearance. There was no playing through them to find a "good one". Both are amazing instruments. It is obvious that prs has given tight tolerances for tried and true specs and they are being produced just that way. I would be really interested in knowing what the rejection rate is in QC either in korea or when they get to MD. I bet it's pretty low. The price point isn't absurdly low but it's realistic when compared to other "student level instruments" in school programs and such. I consider those companies to be in it for the music and ensuring that they are producing a quality product. I see PRS having the same outlook. There is a passion there that you don't see in a lot of other companies. Of course, Paul is still with us and that makes a massive difference. When companies leave the founders hads and CEO's come in their job is to make the company money and many times they simply won't have the passion that the founder had. This is true in any industry but it really hurts in the music industry. When Paul is gone what will happen to PRS? Well that depends on who takes the reins I guess. For now, they are producing quality because that's the focus. I currently own an epiphone les paul, an american strat, and a G&L asat tribute. I would trade all of them for an SE instrument in a heartbeat except maybe the strat which I am thinking might get traded in on a S2.

    So there you have it. A lesson in the difference between customer focus(music focus) and money focus. Companies have different reasons to go overseas and I feel PRS has honest reasons to do so.
     
  16. mojo1fan

    mojo1fan New Member

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    GAS strikes again-

    [​IMG]

    $249 at a GC in Illinois. It's missing the truss rod cover and has a Duncan Invader in the bridge position which I'll definitely change.
     
  17. Duffy

    Duffy New Member

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    Remarkable deal. Is it in great shape?
     
  18. sergiodeblanc

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

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    I had to go through a special program to kick my SE addiction, I'm glad you're getting this one off the streets.
     
  19. mojo1fan

    mojo1fan New Member

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    I bought it off the picture, and the salesman's description. I would have never done that in the past, but I have had nothing but good luck with these little SE guitars. And they have a 30 day return policy.
     
  20. Duffy

    Duffy New Member

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    I heard that the Seymour Duncan Custom Custom is a good pickup for the bridge of an SE. It is supposed to be a very nice pickup. There are so many to choose from.
     

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