SE Paul Allender review by Paul Reed Smith

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 9
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.4 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.8 (97 votes)
Paul Reed Smith: SE Paul Allender

Price paid: $ 577

Purchased from: Paul Bothners

Sound — 10
This guitar was made for metal, and it delivers a full, driven sound that will definitely blow your mind away. I tested it with a Laney Ironheart cab and also a Roland Cube 30X & Boss ME-50 footswitch combination. Its overdrive delivers a well-rounded, heavy (but not too heavy) tone perfect for lead solos or rhythm parts. Its clean tones are bright and warm, thanks to its beautiful humbuckers. These pickups didn't give any feedback for me other than on the most brutal metal OD (which I don't ever use). This guitar is suitable for metal, rock and when using clean tones, maybe even jazz/funk.

Overall Impression — 9
I always used to be a punk rocker, but now I'm more into my metal. This guitar is perfect for me as I'm able to increase my musicality and skill through this instrument. Its enabled me to open up to new skills and methods I could not originally achieve on my old Bullet Strat (which is still a great guitar for beginners).I compared this to the Jackson Dinkey series that's in the same price range, as well as with the Fender Classic Vibe guitars, but none could come close to this guitar. Its looks are amazing, its fretboard it lightning fast, it has kick-a-s bat inlays and great pickups. The only thing I might of liked was a through bridge, but still, this guitar is worth the money. I don't think I'll get another guitar any time soon.

Reliability & Durability — 9
This is a really rugged guitar that seems like it can handle the gigging and touring life. The strap buttons are fixed solidly and it is a really reliable and versatile guitar to play.

Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The origional action of the guitar was a bit high for my liking, so I just manually lowered it so that it suits me. The pickups were already adjusted to give great all round sound. This guitar seems flawless and was in perfect condition.

Features — 10
The Paul Allender Signature electric guitar is a great guitar at a great price. It has wide but thin Maple neck and a Rosewood fretboard with 24 jumbo frets set into a mahogany body. The neck is build for speed, and you are able to do quick runs up and down the fretboard. The Beveled Mahogany body has a Flame Maple Veneer purple finish over it, making it really stunning to look at. It has a PRS Tremolo bridge and tuners. All the hardware is Nickel with a gold finish. It has two passive humbucker pickups (one at the bridge and one at the neck) and has a single volume and tone knob, and a single 3 way pickup selector. It has awesome bats as fretboard inlays.

4 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I got this guitar for $200 used at a local store trading in an old Schecter Omen 6. It was used but not really used, if you know what I mean (no pick scratches on it even, really looks like they used it once or twice). I would have been pissed to get this guitar for any more than $400 (note: that does not mean its not a killer guitar keep reading). It doesn't stay in tune when using the tremelo, or when not using the tremelo. The nut slots need to be filed slightly upon factory setup, and preferably enough to use 10-46 strings. I installed locking tuners on it and it usually stays perfectly in tune for about an hour after tuning (even through bends and annihilation). It plays very well, the action and intonation were fine when I got it, and even as the seasons change it has not been set up by me yet. Sounds great, pickups do not need to be changed. Really great sound for everything from jazz to metal, like it better than Strat or Gibson or anything like that.
    I just bought this unit. I'll provide a review as soon as it arrives. It will be played thru a Mesa Stiletto and a Mesa Lonestar. I only use a Crybaby Q series peddle for effects.
    Benjysticus wrote: This guitar looks seriously hot.But I've been eyeing the new SE Nick Catanese because of the red bindings and the EMG 81 & 85 pickups on it.I'm still deciding on this one because of the thin neck,24 frets,and amazing bat inlays.Can anyone tell me how is the tone of the EMG 81-TW and 89 compared to the 81 & 85?
    They're nearly the same, I've played with both. The only difference is the 81-TM and 89 can be coil-split.
    I have used this guitar for several years and out of the 4 stage guitars I have this is the best all rounder. Shame not many other people will realize its got a great jazz/50s clean sound