Price paid: $ 1959
Purchased from: out-of-business sale
Sound — 10
The tone is superb. I recently bought a Mesa Nomad 55 212 on the "bay" and, with the HFS used in the humbucking selection, it sounds very much like my Gibson LP Standard's Duncan JB (SH4)at the bridge. Great crunch (via Bad Monkey and a touch of delay). My style is decidely classic rock and this guitar fits than venue very well. I also played it through my Fender Twin and it sang very well through it also. Rich and punchy without a hint sounding "brittle"
Overall Impression — 10
As I said earlier, for classic rockers like myself, this is a great axe. It is certainly more tonally versatile than it's contemporaries and it's quality is outstanding. If it were stolen, I would probably replace it. I say this hesistantly because these are so pricey. Had I not gotten a super deal, I wouldn't have bought it at this time. I do resent subjective judgments such as "This will smoke an LP" or "Who needs a Strat?" I enjoy my Strat for the voice it has. I love the voice and feel of my LP Standard, and SG Supreme is the best sounding & playing axe I own. But, my LP is my favorite axe; that's just me. The point is this: my PRS is an additional voice, not a one size fits all replacement choir - and it's a great voice.
Reliability & Durability — 10
PRS has built a solid reputation. I imagine this guitar, as other quality U.S. instruments made by Gibson or Fender, will provide a lifetime of expression. I plan on adding strap locks. At a M.A.P price of $3200.00, they are an ounce of prevention that bring a pound of cure. Gig w/o a backup? I don't gig with 1 guitar. It's not that the PRS might fail; it's that strings do.
Action, Fit & Finish — 10
The craftsmanship of the guitar is everything that PRS is noted for:flawless. Everything is "tight" meaning there are no loose pots, jacks, or other hardware issues. The chrome hardware has no signs of finish wear. The wide/thin neck (wide top to bottom, thin front to back)is very comfortable to play. I don't like the factory set-up. My other axes (Gibson LP's, SG, and Fender Strat - American made all the way) have much better action but in examining the PRS closely, it looks as though the bridge is set a little high. Easy enough fix. Hey, I had to tweak my other guitars as well!
Features — 10
I just likely got the deal of a lifetime. A music store's closing allowed me to buy a Brand New 2008 PRS Custom 24 Amber Violin Quilt Ten Top w/ lifetime warranty for less than 2K. For the unknowing, the Custom 24 is the heart of the PRS line and has 24 frets (w/ birdies) on a rosewood neck, a PRS HFS (hot, fat, screams)pup at the bridge and the PRS Vintage Bass pup at the neck. It selects between the 2 pups w/ a 5-ways rotary Switch which allows for many tonal options. It came with the PRS OHSC, whammy bridge, and all of the case candy.