#1
For graduating my parents are going to buy me a guitar in the $500 range, now here's the catch they wanna buy local and the store in my town only carries Gibson/Epiphone, Fender/Squire, and PRS. Now here's what I'm looking for, I need something with a humbucker in the bridge and that has a pickup that would work for thrash and modern metal, also a good wood like mahogany would probably be what I'm looking for. So can anyone who may have looked into guitars more have any suggestions?
I was thinking either a fender showmaster or a PRS standard(not sure how they would sound for metal) or last time I was there I think they had a Tremonti sig but I'm not a fan of his so I don't know how the guitar sounds.
#2
perhaps go for an epi, then spend some cash on new pickups or other mods.

i would recommend the G-400 or LP standard, with a few mods they could easily handle metal.
#3
I have a Fender Stagemaster and I love it, almost more than my Ibanez S470. I think the showmaster is even better. Works for metal, might be better for metal with new pickups though.
#4
IMO, Fenders offer the best build quality and bang for your buck. PRS SE aren't bad, but they're Korean and the pickups are trash. Why don't they want to drive a bit to find some other shops?