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-   -   PRS questions, opinions etc. (https://www.acousticguitarforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=534116)

Marley 01-09-2019 12:52 PM

PRS questions, opinions etc.
 
Seeing how the PRS thread got a few new great posts, I'm curious to know what the masses think. Keep in mind I don't really care what the masses think but still, I am curious.

I've followed the history of PRS since 1987 when a friend of mine bought one. I wanted one bad and got my first one new in 1997. Custom 22. In those 10 years PRS were very similar to Taylors in that you had to search out stores that carried them. I found most of them stocked at smaller, off the beaten path stores. This was before guitar center started carrying both brands-or around that time.


I'd say at the time I bought mine in 97 there really were no negative opinions being thrown around about PRS.

I'd say by the end of the 90's PRS were huge mainly because a lot of the alternative band guitar players started jumping on board. I know the guitar player for 311 played one from the early 90's but he was one of the few.


Then all of a sudden people started bashing PRS in terms of calling them snob guitars, lawyer guitars, doctor guitars, too pretty guitars etc..

To the general non PRS playing guitar public out there does that sentiment still remain or by 2019 is it gone? If you don't play a PRS and go to a show at a bar and the guitar players is playing a PRS do any immediate thoughts come to you?

Jaden 01-09-2019 01:10 PM

I saw a used PRS electric, don’t recall the model, for sale for $7000 or so recently. My impression is that they’re high quality. Like you, I’ve read negative comments but I think it has to do with people (most just jealous) who don’t get along with thick, robust tone, the latter which doesn’t allow for that stringy, thin attack you can get from a lot of Fenders which ironically gives the guitarist more options for boosting the signal.

Dru Edwards 01-09-2019 05:21 PM

PRS makes great guitars. Some of the 'negative' comments you've read relate to PRS not making great pickups although that has changed recently. As you mentioned I too have read negative comments (unjustified) related to PRSi being owned by Doctors, Lawyers, etc because they're expense, look fantastic, and the tone doesn't matter to them because they're amateur players. I think that comes from players who just can't afford it.

I have a 1998 CE-22 model. It has the Dragon II pickups. They're good pickups but not great and not as good as my Gibson/Seymour Duncan/DiMarzio/Fender pickups in my other guitars.

I don't think there's anywhere near as much PRS bashing as Gibson electrics, which I'm a huge fan. One thing PRS has going for them is the QC is excellent.

KevWind 01-09-2019 06:52 PM

Like Taylor , PRS was relatively small new guitar company in the 80s that started to make inroads and started to garner more market share as the years went by and when the sales and numbers start to impact the market share of the traditional brands, seems to be when the haters and bashers start to emerge. As long as a builder stays small in production numbers there is little fuel or fodder for the bashers to fixate on.
But start to transition from smaller to bigger with more and more market share and the subsequent notirity , then the naysayers really start to crawl out of the woodwork and get vocal.

About 3 years ago when I went on my quest to get back into electric guitar after a 47 year absence. I basically assumed I would get either a Fender Tele or Strat. Went out and played a bunch of both over several months and had pretty much decided I would get an American made Elite series .

When Black Friday came I went shopping cash in wallet At my local independant guitar store they had several Elite Tele's and Strats and I was trying to decide which one I wanted, when the owner handed me a PRS CE 24 and said you should probably try this also .
And low and behold 10 minutes later I walked out with the PRS

Mich Novice 01-09-2019 07:58 PM

They sure feel great. I had an SE Custom 22 for a short time (it was about 10 years old, no bird inlay) and found the pickups to be very blah. The fit, finish, playability and sustain were all there though. I havenít played newr models or even the S2 stuff though. If I was one to tinker Iíd hsve dropped different pickups in it in a heartbeat and had a blast. They can be had for a steal used. I wouldnít hesitate to recommend a used SE to a new player.

Marley 01-10-2019 09:01 AM

I had an SE at one point. It was a blue SSS set up and I loved it and the fit and finish was great and this was from Korea. I should have never sold it.

My 1997 Custom 22 came with the Dragon II pups. I didn't care for them and even more disliked the 5 way rotary (very hard to jump around when playing live). About 5 years ago I sent the guitar back to Maryland and the guys swapped out the Dragons for a set of Lollar single coil for humbuckers and changed the 5 way to a 3 way toggle. I love it even more now.

Now, the only thing that sometimes gets me when playing for extended sets is the edge on the upper bout where my right arms hangs. It almost seems to cut into my circulation. The bevel on my Strat is much more comfortable but when I play the two guitars I'd say the biggest immediate difference is that the PRS seems to be built like a tank. Whatever that means. Hard to put into words but my Strat, Tele and Bob Marley Gibson all seem kind of light (not in actual weight) and flimsy and the PRS feels so solid and indestructible. Or something like that :)

Goodallboy 01-10-2019 09:35 AM

Iíve owned three PRS guitars, a Hollowbody Spruce, a McCarty solidbody, and an SC58. I still own the HB and the SC58. All have been extremely well made, perhaps the best factory made guitars in the industry.

The negativity about them stems from many sources and they have been mentioned previously so thereís no need to restate them.

The primary reason a guitar is preferred by a player is that it either delivers the tone one prefers or it does not. Itís no more complicated than that. Yes, it must be stable enough to intonated well and stay in tune, but it must deliver the goods tonally that the player ďhearsĒ in his head. And that sound is predicated on the tones one grew up listening to, which normally leads one into Gibson or Fender territory. PRS was late to the party and as good as they are, donít sound like either one of those.

So as nice as they are, my favorite guitar is a well played, buckle rashíd, Ď91 Les Paul Standard with Sheptone PAF Tributes. It goes where the others canít and thatís where I reside, tonally.

M Sarad 01-10-2019 10:57 AM

I have been playing Gibsonís since I was 16, 47 years now. I have had SGs, Les Pauls, 330,335,345, Juniors, and still play the Melody Maker with TTop PAFs I bought as a Junior in high school.

My PRS McCarty stays in tune.

Paultergeist 01-10-2019 01:02 PM

PRS
 
I like them......but.......I think there is a point in time when the price is hard to justify in terms of the physical item......and it becomes more like "art."

I would describe a Rolex wristwatch along similar lines. The Rolex Submariner (in stainless steel) used to be a standard-issue item for U.S. Navy divers. It was pricey, but it was also a very good watch. Arguable, the price was commensurate with the functional value of the item itself. Somewhere along the lines, however, the watch became known as a status item, and the price went up, and up, and up. Eventually, the price reflected a "prestige value" which was well beyond the value of the Rolex in terms of it being "a watch" of certain construction and engineering and warranty, but rather of it being an item of *art* -- an item who's value could not be accurately assessed/compared based on tangible attributes. And that is fine, for those who wish to pay the price.......

I am seeing PRS guitars through a similar lens today. They are fine guitars, but the "collectible" or "artistic/prestige" value is beyond that which I can justify in terms of materials, construction, quality, etc. That is just MY opinion, but I can state with absolute fact that one can purchase a stunning piece of quilted / tiger-maple for a couple hundred bucks -- so it is not the high cost of decorative wood tops.

I am not knocking PRS guitars -- I just think the name-plate value has now eclipsed the inherent instrument value....at least for me. Like a fine piece of art, if it is worth it to YOU, then it is worth it.....to you. Play on.

KevWind 01-10-2019 02:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Paultergeist (Post 5944285)
I like them......but.......I think there is a point in time when the price is hard to justify in terms of the physical item......and it becomes more like "art."

I would describe a Rolex wristwatch along similar lines. The Rolex Submariner (in stainless steel) used to be a standard-issue item for U.S. Navy divers. It was pricey, but it was also a very good watch. Arguable, the price was commensurate with the functional value of the item itself. Somewhere along the lines, however, the watch became known as a status item, and the price went up, and up, and up. Eventually, the price reflected a "prestige value" which was well beyond the value of the Rolex in terms of it being "a watch" of certain construction and engineering and warranty, but rather of it being an item of *art* -- an item who's value could not be accurately assessed/compared based on tangible attributes. And that is fine, for those who wish to pay the price.......

I am seeing PRS guitars through a similar lens today. They are fine guitars, but the "collectible" or "artistic/prestige" value is beyond that which I can justify in terms of materials, construction, quality, etc. That is just MY opinion, but I can state with absolute fact that one can purchase a stunning piece of quilted / tiger-maple for a couple hundred bucks -- so it is not the high cost of decorative wood tops.

I am not knocking PRS guitars -- I just think the name-plate value has now eclipsed the inherent instrument value....at least for me. Like a fine piece of art, if it is worth it to YOU, then it is worth it.....to you. Play on.

All completely understandable and certainly true, for me also . I would not pay for a PRS Private reserve for example... BUT that applies across multiple guitar brands , I would not pay for a Fender "Custom Shop" and especially have no interest in the upper end of Gibson Les Paul line ??? How is PRS actually any different ? I mean you do realize that PRS makes an extensive line of guitars starting at $500 and going up in more or less $100 increments ? Again I don't see that PRS is really any different in this regard ?

Steel and wood 01-10-2019 04:20 PM

Acknowledge they make great guitars but they're just not for me.

M Sarad 01-10-2019 04:46 PM

I have been wearing my Rolex since 1984.

aknow 01-11-2019 08:16 AM

Paul's story of success is an American wonder. Anyone who bashes his legacy or his guitars is just ignorant, cheap, or jealous. Why even discuss?

Marley 01-11-2019 11:28 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Steel and wood (Post 5944488)
Acknowledge they make great guitars but they're just not for me.

out of curiosity, since they make so many different models and styles, pick up configurations, woods and even price points from $500-$5000 what's not for you. Is it simply the name only or something else? I have to assume it's the name only which then actually gets back to my original post/question in a way. Personally, I can't think of any guitar brand out there where I'd blanketly say that brand's not for me.

as a side note, the used PRS market is most definitely a buyers market. These things do not hold their purchase price for the most part. In fact I don't many, if any, PRS, besides an early 85,86,87, that has sold for more than it was purchased for including the Dragons and Private Stocks.

I paid around $3K for mine in 1997. It's pretty much pristine condition and I'd be lucky to get $900 for it according to the ones I've seen sold.

Steel and wood 01-11-2019 07:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Marley (Post 5945254)
out of curiosity, since they make so many different models and styles, pick up configurations, woods and even price points from $500-$5000 what's not for you. Is it simply the name only or something else? I have to assume it's the name only which then actually gets back to my original post/question in a way. Personally, I can't think of any guitar brand out there where I'd blanketly say that brand's not for me.

as a side note, the used PRS market is most definitely a buyers market. These things do not hold their purchase price for the most part. In fact I don't many, if any, PRS, besides an early 85,86,87, that has sold for more than it was purchased for including the Dragons and Private Stocks.

I paid around $3K for mine in 1997. It's pretty much pristine condition and I'd be lucky to get $900 for it according to the ones I've seen sold.

I make no secret that I'm first and foremost a Fender fan and for whatever reason, I have no interest in owning or playing a PRS guitar. (I'm sure that I'm not alone).

Not saying that they don't make great guitars, but Fender (the brand and its history) is what I'm mostly drawn to.


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