Why isn't the Santana model more popular?

shallbe

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I bought a used but nearly mint 2004 Santana II in the last few months and it has quickly become one of my favorite guitars and primary gigging instruments.

I love my other PRS guitars with 25" scales and 10" radius. I had my reservations about buying the Santana before trying it, due to the 24 frets, shorter scale, bigger neck, signature pickups, etc. No dealer around me has one and will never have one. No one carries PRS core stuff around here anymore.

Took the risk due to the beauty of the guitar. However, once I played it, it was an instant connection. The fat neck carve is wonderful, the scale is comfy and not cramped. 12" radius feels great. The super deep top carve and nice belly cut makes the guitar so comfortable when standing. It just hangs right on a strap for me.

The thicker body and fat neck make the guitar feel substantial without being unwieldy. The uncovered Santana pickups are very open and clear. The neck pickup in my guitar is especially sweet and chimey. The bridge pickup is not dark or flat, and it does everything well.

We played a private party Sat. night and I got a bunch of compliments on the guitar. "Sounds great." "Sure is pretty." Also......"What kind of guitar is that?" He kept staring at it. I forgot that there is no name on the headstock and told him what a great guitar the PRS Santana is.

So........why isn't this a more popular? Is it price alone? I know they tend to be more expensive than other core models typically.
 

Rider1260

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I will have one someday :)
When I first looked at PRS it was the one I wanted and had a KL33
Still thinking a 408 Santana with a 25" scale and 24 frets would be a KILLER PS guitar
 

fender1punk

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I would love a Santana. I just can't afford a core model. (Probably ever) and I have never had an opportunity to play an SE. None of my local stores ever carry one. For the longest time it was just Tremonti SE's and Cu24s. Now they don't even stock Tremonti's.
 

CatStrangler

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I have a real soft spot fro this model. The 11.5" fretboard radius is a big draw for me. I think a lot of players are just more at home with 22 frets or the longer scale length. I also dig the McCarty platform a lot and appreciate both lines for what they offer. The Santana Retro I picked up is a really special instrument.
 

G-Man

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A Santana II is on my bucket list. I can also see why there are not many of them because they are so different from PRS models look and sound like today and also what sells. I think endorsement power fades over time as the artist evolves. Many of the signature models are to get people attached to the brand, not necessarily to the model.
 

justmund

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For the record, I have 2 "Santana" guitars, my Narrowfield Santana Proto and one of the first run DC22s. The proto is like a Santana, 24 fret, short scale etc, but with 3 pickups, and the DC22 has 22 frets, short scale and I'm assuming 10" radius.

Been really into the DC22 lately with the 59/09s, but I may put a 53/10 in the neck and also do the "resistor mod".

I'm not really a sig model kinda guy, but I am really into both these guitars!
 

Audie

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So........why isn't this a more popular? Is it price alone? I know they tend to be more expensive than other core models typically.

Signature guitars are just that, signature guitars, and that in and of itself is a limiting factor in demand. Price? Yes, it is a factor I am sure. The upside for the body/design, is that the only way to get this body/design outside of Private Stock is the signature model in the core line or SE line. I have always wondered why PRS does not also offer some configuration of this body/design outside the Santana identity. I believe they would sell quite well. For example: same body and electronics, but maybe a different headstock, inlay (moons) or scale length. Just sayin!

Outside of your question I would like to say... At the end of the day the problem of availability will apply regardless of the model. PRS guitars are made in controlled limited quantities, not mass produced, so that quality control does not waiver. The trade off for that is less inventory in stores. Factor in a sig model that has a unique market and availability is slimmer yet. PRS prices are not much different than their competitors. When you factor in how much guitar you get for the price. It is a no-brainer how much of a deal they are. As a long as big box stores and online only stores can pimp the mom and pop shops, we will have less inventory in local shops. The tradeoff for a good deal sight unseen is most often not being able to touch and feel in person.
 

Tosca

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I could kick myself for waiting so long to get one...now I wonder if I don't "need" another.
 

G-Man

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Signature guitars can also be so polarizing to a brand. As a 51 year old guy, I connect with Santana, Alex Lifeson, Al DiMeola, Howard Lesse. Do I connect with Mark Tremonti and some of the other endorsee's, not even close. Complete deaf ears for their music and care less about their branding but I will buy at least three PRS guitars in the next three years. Am I in the position to pay $6k for a custom shop guitar. Nope with four more college payments due.

Steven Wilson who is not and endorsee, yes. Martin Barre. Absolutely. Dweezil zappa - Yes as a player but that guitar shape fell from the ugly tree and hit every branch.

I want a Santana guitar because they are beautiful works of art and sound great and you kind have to pay homage for the guy that supported our club of misfits.
 

ViperDoc

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I've only picked up a friend's Howard Leese Golden Eagle for a Santana taste test, and it was sublime. I think I need one.
 

shallbe

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I could kick myself for waiting so long to get one...now I wonder if I don't "need" another.

Me too. I am looking at another one right now.

I am not a huge Carlos Santana fan. I'm a fan, but he is not anywhere near the top of my favorite players. I just really like the look of the guitar, and now that I have gigged it a bunch, the performance of it is pretty special.

It really does so much more than the tones that Carlos Santana is famous for. It is an open and clear guitar, perfect for funk, R&B, Rock, etc. Back off on the tone control and you get the typical Carlos tones.

I think that maybe since Carlos goes for one sound, the thought is that is all it does. Not true. It is a very versatile guitar that feels great and sounds equally good clean to mean.
 

Bob Sherwood

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I bought a new Santana SE in 2012. Shortly thereafter I bought a Core Custom 24. Both are great guitars. I have since purchased two more Santana SE's. Most of the time the core sits in its case while I play the SE's. Something about the Santana SE that I prefer over the core.
 

Egads

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For me, it comes down to scale length. It's just too short for me. Visually, I love it. I try to relate every time I get a chance to play one, but I just can't come to terms with the scale.
 

gasmansteve72

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Think it is artist guitars in general that get labeled as a one trick pony or as quirky to a artists needs or wants from their model.
I'm wanting one myself so much but will be waiting a while yet so will keep using my SE Standard Santana for now ...
Think most people if they try one would want one or like it but may find that one or two things don't suit them as say the controls placement or scale length even neck shape doesn't suit there playing style or it been different from a favorite guitar of there own..
It all boils down to the person trying it..
If it works for them they will buy it if not there are a lot more guitars out there which might suit there needs better...
 

g.wizz

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I got a Santana SE for my nephew few years back and I was amazed when I played it
it sounded good compared to my core cu22 and 513 AP even the trem held the tuning perfectly;
I love Santana's tone and the core model's been on my radar for a while but with the debut of the Mc 594 it will come down
to the funds availability to decide which one to complement my 513.
 
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