Sound — 10
No surprises here, it's only the best-sounding mass-produced guitar on the planet. It's hard for me to talk about the sound of this guitar without coming off like a wine-taster in the Sonoma Valley, but I don't care. The V12 finish really does help the wood breath, and the articulation of the pickups is nothing short of astounding. I've never played a guitar with 5 pickup configurations where I haven't been lukewarm on at least one of the positions, but this is the exception. Everything sounds good. Jazz, rock, metal, country, blues, you name it. It has no weakness! I'm the guy who will look for excuses not to give something a 10 but I literally can't find anything to complain about.
Overall Impression — 9
I have a confession. There was a time in my life that I would publicly, and adamantly, hate on PRS. I could never get over the fact that for the price of 1 guitar, I could instead have an American Standard Strat, an American Standard Tele, AND a Vox Ac30. It seemed absolutely incredulous to spend that kind of money on a guitar, throw in the fact that every PRS-owner I had met up to that point reminded me of the guy in the Diesel jeans with the fake tan and pastel-colored polo shirt that would act like your "bro" at parties while he's really just waiting for his chance to hit on your girlfriend the second your back is turned. However, upon further inspection, the guitars are priced right where they should be, the only real question is if you personally believe spending that much on a guitar is called for, but they're worth every penny.
Reliability & Durability — 9
One of the reasons you pay the premium for this guitar is the quality of the components. The knobs are smooth and the tuners are solid. Of all the PRS owners I know, none of them have ever needed to have one serviced. Durability shouldn't ever be a problem because, as any Gibson 335 owner will tell you, you'll be too paranoid about scratching or dinging it to ever take it outside the house.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
Right out of the box it plays great. I'm a big fan of the "pattern thin neck shape" and it really does feel as if it's already been broken in. The actual setup was a little low, surprisingly, and had slight initial issues in the ol' 6th string 7-9th fret buzz zone. Nothing a slight adjustment didn't fix. They ship just like they should with a set .10 gauge strings and, for the most, part, was good to go out of the gate. We've already talked a bit about the finish and, as with most PRS guitars, video and pictures don't do it justice. Did I mention that a team of chemists has been working on this since the last millennium?
Features — 9