Paul's Guitar review by Paul Reed Smith

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  • Features: 10
  • Sound: 10
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 10 Gem
  • Users' score: 8.8 (9 votes)
Paul Reed Smith: Paul's Guitar

Price paid: $ 2300

Purchased from: Ebay

Features — 10
Made in 2015, this Paul Reed Smith Paul's Guitar is Paul's personal guitar made available for mass production. It features a maple top, mahogany back and neck, and Honduran rosewood for the fretboard. 22 frets, pattern neck shape, brush stroke bird inlays, PRS tremolo, and Phase 3 locking tuners. The pickups are based on the 408 model, but with some modifications made by Paul. I got mine in the grey black finish which is wonderful. It came with a paisley hard case. Looks really fancy, perfect for a fancy guitar.

Sound — 10
This would be the 10th guitar in my arsenal. I've had and do have Fender Jaguars, a Gibson Les Paul, a Greco Mirage, and an Ibanez S Classic. I've bought some, traded some, and kept the ones I really like. I rarely do covers as my band plays our own compositions, but I do like having a good variety of tones accessible to me. My ears have grown a little too picky with tones, hence I usually end up modding my guitars to achieve the tone I want. Despite this, every guitar still have just one tone spectrum, so sometimes I have to bring more than one guitar to gigs. Paul's Guitar solves that problem. Since it comes with 2 humbuckers that have a coil tap switch for each one, using pickup selector, you can achieve 8 different tones by the 8 possible pickup combinations (HX, XH, HH, SS, SX, XS, HS, SH. *X meaning off). It's like the Swiss army knife of guitars.

Every tone of this guitar is beautiful. The coil tap is very usable. Unlike other guitars with coil taps, this one does not have any volume drop when switching to singles. The sound is very resonant and clear, and the sustain really sinks in. Just by strumming a chord, you can already hear the articulation of this guitar. Bending strings maintains a rich thick sound even up to the highest frets. The pickups also respond well to playing dynamics. The sound definitely cuts through a thick mix in the band while maintaining note for note clarity, even in high gain.

This definitely kills all my other guitars and is the best sounding guitar right now for me.

Action, Fit & Finish — 10
The guitar arrived with the action a little high for my preference so I had it adjusted. The guitar is just absolutely gorgeous. The finish is flawless. The flamed mahogany top is very beautiful to look at. Built wise, it screams quality. It's well built to the finest details that even the knobs feel so good to turn. Everything about it says "high end." You can definitely tell that PRS is not only serious about making guitars that are good musical tools, they are also serious about making guitars that are beautiful artefacts. This is definitely a beautiful looking and sounding guitar.

Reliability & Durability — 10
Given the top built quality of this guitar, it will definitely stand years and years of active playing, whether in a bedroom, studio, or live gigs. Paul said himself that his guitars are so well built that it should not be seeing a repairman within 15 years of active playing. I'm taking his word for it. Although there's a note from one of the case candies that says some finishes may have discolouration when constantly exposed to light, so I guess I'll be taking note of that.

The variety of tones it can make makes it a very versatile guitar that you definitely would not need any other guitar to bring to a gig just to achieve different tones.

Overall Impression — 10
My style of music is a fusion of modern rock, post rock, and ambient sounds. I run my signal chain through a series of pedals. I use delays heavily, combined with light overdrive and some crunch. This guitar is a good match for my gear, and I will definitely be playing this guitar most of the time. In fact, I can actually survive with just this one guitar in my rig. If there's something I don't like about this guitar, that would be that the 8 different sound can be a little confusing sometimes, as I'm more of a plug and play guy. But that's not really an issue. I absolutely love this guitar.

17 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Lost interest in the article when it said 'tremelo'. Im pretty sure thats a fixed bridge
    The guitar I reviewed is the trem version. The ones you see here are the fixed bridge version which UG uploaded. Same guitar nonetheless.
    there are these things call "fingers" you can used them when you don't have a "tremelo"
    um, definitely not on a fixed bridge. hence, FIXED bridge. vibrato with the fingers, yes. tremolo, no. thats a whammy bar for the lay-folks.
    The "tremolo" arm actually does a vibrato effect though. Vibrato is a wavering of pitch, like when a gospel or opera singer hits a high note and the note starts to shake. Tremolo is a very rapid reiteration of the note (tremolo picking, a technique adapted from classical and flamenco) or a variance in the amplitude of the sound (like a tremolo pedal).
    Is the song at the very very end of that Anderton's video a song? That I can listen to? EDIT: Found it.
    I prefer the PRSs with the PRS fixed bridge. That huge chunk of hardened aluminum gives these PRS guitar the tone that they have, which of course is absolutely stellar.
    angelalopez123 · Feb 10, 2016 09:44 AM
    "Lost interest" due not having a whammy bar ? sounds like a Teenage Jock saying he only Fucks Cheerleaders. there's a big world out there if you open your eyes LOL =)
    I believe he was stating that the man in the video made a mistake by referring to the fixed bridge as a tremelo. So settle down teenage jock and go dream about fucking cheerleaders
    sounds like a sweet guitar but I have to question why they wouldn't just use the two knobs as pull/push switches for the coil tap? It would save some drilling, no?
    ever played live and sweated ? those pull knobs aren't the best IMO ,.
    hum yeah, fair point. I actually do play live and have that kind of knobs, I simply put a few tiny pieces of velcro to help get a better grip. I can see how people wouldn't want that kind of solution but I wouldn't want extra holes in my axe
    Umm, I'm not a guitar genius, but that's a fixed bridge. You cannot move the bridge without loosening the screws. I wouldn't say it's appropriate to lose interest just because it's not a Floyd Rose or other tremolo bridge, but what I see is a fixed bridge. Let's call things what they are and not assume immaculate skill.
    The guitar on the picture that UG posted is a fixed bridge. What I reviewed was the version that comes with a trem.
    triciahart456 · Mar 10, 2016 09:08 AM