SE Santana review by Paul Reed Smith

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 9
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.6 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.3 (107 votes)
Paul Reed Smith: SE Santana

Purchased from: Private Seller

Sound — 10
Really nice sound, does sparkling clean sounds, nice warm sound with neck pickup, great funky type sounds with middle position & some nice arpeggios to be had from bridge humbucker. Throw in some gain & this guitar reallsy shows its quality, now I have not tried this through my gigging amp which is a Engl Screamer 50 Combo, but used the sellers Session 25w combo, the dirty sounds from this guitar are great, will cover anything from blues to heavy rock/metal, leads sing through & the sustain on notes when using the neck pickup is amazing, the notes last for ages. I love this guitar & have sold my PRS SE Custom to buy this model, it will be used as my main gigging axe.

Overall Impression — 10
I play in a rock covers band in the UK, I play all kinds of music & need a very versatile Guitar to play from ZZ Top, Gary Moore through to Pink, Anastacia, Evanescence etc. I've been playing for 23 years now & PRS are the only guitar I've used that will cover all bases of music. If it were stolen I would definitely buy a replacement. I've had top range Les Pauls & Strats etc, but always settled on the PRS SE range.

Reliability & Durability — 9
I haven't gigged this Guitar yet, but as I did over 100 gigs with my PRS SE Custom, I expect this model to be as reliable, it has lasted well since the last owner had it from new. Everything is still solid in it's place, with no signs of wear. I will always use a backup guitar when gigging, it's not professional to gig with only one Guitar, anything can happen!

Action, Fit & Finish — 9
Excellent finish throughout, the action/set-up all fine from the private seller. Slight problem with bottom e string going out of tune, nothing that a good set of replacement strings won't sort out. As this Guitar is now a few years old, I've noticed a slight yellowing of the binding on the neck, but I like this, I find it adds character. The paint finish has lasted well. No rough edges on the frets & no dead spots anywhere.

Features — 10
2002 model, version 2 Santana SE Model, in aqua marine finish, a beautiful unique looking guitar, not sure of the body materials, rosewood neck with special inlays, stop bridge with wrapover strings, two PRS open humbuckers, with chrome surrounds, three way selector switch, two controls, one volume & one tone. Comes with heavy duty gig bag, but I put all my guitars in hard cases.

5 comments sorted by best / new / date

    y wud u hunt down the review of this instrument, just so u can slag it off? thats 1 sad life u've got going. Like those youtubers who watch a song and then leave comments saying how rubbish it is, and hoiw they h8 tht band. Y watch the song if u h8 tht band? nyway,, im thinking of getting one of these, but is it customary for the backplate thing to be off? thnx for any replies/
    joshua wayne x wrote: mine is pretty impressive, i got it for 300$ and i feel it was worth every penny. I noticed its made in a few different countries, is that unusual?
    the SE's are made in korea. the other reeds are made here in the USA
    I love mine, bought it second-hand for 289, does everything you could ever want from a guitar. Although the 3rd string does go slightly out when I use the trem hard. But apart from that, awesome!
    This guitar has such a weak, dull sound. A basic Epi beats it. I'm certainly glad my roommate is the sorry sap with one.