Tremonti SE review by Paul Reed Smith

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 10
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 9.6 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.9 (256 votes)
Paul Reed Smith: Tremonti SE

Price paid: $ 600

Purchased from: eBay

Sound — 10
I play primarily hard rock/metal, but I also induldge in punk, hardcore, jazz, and blues on occasion. This guitar suits all of these styles well. I bought this guitar to replace my Epiphone Les Paul Black Beauty, and the difference in sound alone was enough to make me very happy about the Switch. I play this guitar through a split channel rig. One channel goes through my Boss Metal Zone pedal and a Morley Bad Horsie Wah for my heavy distortion, and the other channel goes through by Boss ME-50 Effects Processor for all my clean/light distortion/effects. The channels both feed into my Marshall 60 Watt Valvestate. The guitar has a great sound, simple as that. I've played it with the stock pickups, and they of course are not as nice as the USA's I have, but still sound great.

Overall Impression — 10
My playing covers all sorts of territory, and this guitar is always right there with me. I've been playing for 6 years, and my first guitar was the aforementioned Epiphone Les Paul Custom. This guitar is better than the Epi in every category, at a better price. The gig bag that comes with it is one of the best I've seen, I've used it when I don't feel like lugging my hardshell, and it protects the guitar very well. The only thing wrong with this guitar is the scratchy tone pots, which can easily be fixed with some contact cleaner. I bought this guitar over the Epiphone Zakk Wylde Les Paul, Schecter C-1 Deluxe, and ESP EC-1000, and couldn't have made a better choice. This thing is the total package, and at this price (which is quickly rising because it has been discontinued), it can't be beat.

Reliability & Durability — 10
I've already gigged with this guitar quite a bit, without a backup. I'm saving up to purchase a backup, mostly because I use several alternate tunings, and even though our singer is good with the crowd, I hate having to change tunings after every couple songs. Everything on this guitar is rock solid, simple as that. I haven't used the stock strap buttons, so I can't comment on those. The finish is made to last, the hardware is made to last, and it's a very solid Singlecut body.

Action, Fit & Finish — 10
I bought the guitar from somebody on eBay, and it was set-up very nicely with 11-52 gauge strings. Pickup height was perfect for a nice balanced tone on both pickups, without any of the harshness you can get from hot pickups. Guitar was setup very nicely, I took it out of the box, tuned up and played. I rarely mess with the tone controls on the guitar, but when I do I've noticed that they crackle, which I intend to have fixed at some point. Tuners are not locking, but they stay in tune just fine. The action is great, easy chording and fast solos, a nice change from my old Les Paul.

Features — 8
- Made in 2003 - 22 frets - Mahogany body & neck - Platinum finish - Singlecut body (now discontinued) - Stoptail bridge/tailpeice - 2 volume, 2 tone, 3-way toggle pickup selector - Mine was sold with PRS USA Tremonti pickups installed - Non-locking PRS tuners - Mine was sold with a hardshell case and Dunlop Strap locks installed.

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