I know the full history of this used PRS 25th Anniversary Mira Soapbar from 2011 – I sold it brand new and can fully vouch for it having been played only at home, by one discerning and careful owner – I can still refer to my original web site notes and evaluation for this Mira, as all details are still applicable from when I first sold it, so read on
The bad news is that PRS released the Mira Soapbar as a limited edition model in 2010 – Only a small handful became available within the UK and whilst they sold fairly quickly, PRS dropped it from the 2011 price list – So the good news is that I have now acquired a used, but exceptionally clean example – Complete with tags and the deluxe cream/white Anniversary PRS case, which is also in first class condition – This Mira might not quite acquire the 10 out of 10 as new, mint condition tag, but it is close call – Overall, the guitars condition is clean, so close scrutiny is required to find any surface grazes to that traditional flavoured smoked amberburst finish – There are a few very light grazes to the top surface of the finish which the camera does not pick up as they are so slight – Frets are fine – Despite the clean appearance I have still allowed the Mira a visit to my work bench for a new set of 10’s and to check all is fine with regard to the set-up
When the PRS Mira was first launched at the end of 2007 with regular humbuckers, I was always hoping the Soapbar P90 version would eventually pop its head through the door – A pair of Soapbar pick-ups and the simple approach of a plain mahogany body are 2 components that can produce magic – So plenty of good news when PRS decided to release it and spec it with a Gibson-esq 24.5″ scale length, plus a regular neck profile, to capture some of the vibe of a great late 50’s double cutaway Les Paul Special, or indeed the early 60’s SG Special – Shipped with the 25th Anniversary features – As such the 25th special bird inlays grace the 22 fret rosewood fingerboard, along with the ‘Eagle’ inlay on a rosewood headstock facia – When it comes to the aesthetic department, then simplicity is the order of the day, but don’t let that detract you from what the guitar is capable of delivering performance wise, as the build quality, playability and tonal quality is sheer PRS through and through – An all mahogany body and neck is topped of with a traditional flavoured translucent smoked amberburst finish – I had to check the weight on the scales, as I could hardly believe that the reading found on my digital scales was 6lbs and 6oz, so yes that light weight mahogany body is vibrant with a natural lively character – The milled solid aluminium wrap over bridge/tailpiece is now familiar territory to many PRS guitars and in many ways this is the 21st century’s equivalent to the early wrap over bridge found on a 50’s Gibbo’s – So simple yet so effective – A set of low mass PRS 14:1 ratio locking tuners sit on the headstock, with brass string posts to further enhance the tone
Could the electric department ever be more simple than this ? – A pair of custom voiced and wound Soapbar pick-ups are controlled via a 3 way blade switch, a master volume and tone control – The neck pick up measures 11.4K, whilst the bridge measures 14.36K – Yet this simplicity does not show anything other than an awesome tonal character, with great dynamics and expression when you get round to introducing it to your amp – On clean amp settings, the neck pick-up delivers those cool and chilled out tones that jazz and blues players adore, with incredible articulation and a musical warmth that is so inspiring – The bridge pick-up has a full bodied bite that instantly reminds you of a fat sounding and ballsy Tele, so yes It can growl and snarl when required – Turn the overdrive level up on the amp to hi-gain and the ballsy punk-esq tones of the likes of Green Day await you ,as the Soapbar delivers the output of a humbucker with the tonal character of a single coil pick-up – What a combination – Whilst you are on this hi-gain amp setting, then spend a few seconds checking out the smooth, warm tone that can be found on the neck pick-up as it wails, sings and purrs like no other – Yet to me, the best part of this guitar is when the amp is set up with more of a subtle overdrive setting that is suitable for blues and/or classic rock – This now allows the guitar to show its full expressive and dynamic qualities – So much so, that once set-up, you can leave the amp alone and control everything from the guitar itself – Turn the guitars volume control up to 10, dig in a bit with your picking and it will kick dirt – Roll off the volume pot a touch and maybe even the tone pot as well, until you find that luxurious sweet spot, whereby it sounds so warm and smooth as you delicately stroke those tasty chords
Depending on your playing style, this may well be the only guitar you need, yet if you have a few other guitars in a collection then a Mira 245 Soapbar will certainly enrich your collection – Finally the second you let your left hand wrap around that neck you are hooked as the playability is so effortless and fluid – Regular/Standard profile that measures .870″ around the top nut end and .949″ around the 12th fret – With a slightly more narrow top nut width at 42.89mm, it has somewhat of a good Tele/Strat vibe out the size of the neck – To put it nice and simply, this is double cutaway P90 heaven at its finest
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