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For a number of years now, PRS have released various models that have  been inspired by the vintage market – The McCarty, plus various Singlecut models, like the SC245, Stripped 58, SC58 have all tried to entice potential customers to leave behind their Les Paul and move to the PRS camp – Yet, after its release in 2016, the PRS McCarty 594 has certainly acquired favourable reviews, via many different media outlets – To a regular PRS player, then nothing fresh about the cosmetic attributes of the 594, but the desire to capture that vintage mojo, combined with the slick attributes of a modern guitar, is the end game –  I’ll list a few of my own comments and observations below regarding the McCarty 594, but for now, why not click here and read a detailed review, courtesy of Guitarist/Music Radar and Dave Burrluck

PRS McCarty 594 with a cool faded blue jean finish – Sorry that the web site pics do not capture the full glory of the figured maple top, or indeed the finish – It certainly looks better in the flesh  – The tag and serial number indicate a 2016 serial number but it looks like this 594 has not seen a lot of action  – I found a merest hint of a graze on the rear of the body, on the black gloss finish – Can’t even feel the blemish as it is no more than skin deep – So overall a very clean instrument

Playability :-  The neck, feel and frets are far more influenced by the R9 Custom Shop LP market, as against sticking to the feel of a regular PRS Custom 22/24 – The differences maybe subtle, but to a traditional LP fan, it feels like you are more on home turf  – Yet, the PRS set-up, impeccable build quality and attention to detail, ensures that it is far more slinky and feels far more easy to play – Only a light touch is required to show of a few cascading licks ‘n’ tricks – Yet you can still dig in and lay into a few big moody blues bends as required – Maybe a combination of a precision cut top nut,  quality fret work including the profile and impeccably polished, but the whole guitar sounds more in tune – Even when playing more complex’ jazz flavoured chords further up the fingerboard – Maybe PRS have not re-invented the classic feel of a 59 burst, but they have made it more slick – I’m biased as I’m a big PRS fan and have been so for around 30 years – But this McCarty instantly felt comfortable straight out of the box – Within 10/20/30 seconds of playing it I was hooked

Tonal character :-   Again the influence is very much 59 burst influenced – Is it a DNA 59 replica ? – I’ll say no, but that is purely as in my opinion there is a 59 influence, but two, three or four 59’s, when compared side by side, are similar but never identical – ie the finer nuances of two or three identical guitars can produce  a different tonal character – To my ears the PRS has more definition and dynamics – As such more responsive  – The neck pick-up sings and puurrrs and sounds so lush and creamy smooth – The bridge pick-up delivers a tight low end that is full, with punchy mids and musical highs that are clear but not thin – It has more than enough character to enjoy working through the clean channel of an amp, be it for those Chic style funky chops, country pickin’ licks, or chilled and laid back jazz lines – Yet only a touch of overdrive is required for the 594 to show its character  – With this in mind, with the guitar’s volume pot on 10, you’ll hear the full on approach – So roll back the pot towards 6 or 7 for  a cleaner voice which you’ll find is ideal to set-up your base camp – ie The sweet spot  – Then roll back towards when you require that bit of extra gain and bite – The same approach works when you dial in more gain on the amp/pedal – Hence you and the guitar can find so much soul and emotion at your finger tips

On hi-gain amp settings I found it was a hard choice between do I prefer to play on the neck or bridge pick-up – I know you can select both as required, but on many guitars I don’t always like both options – But on the 594 I could fall in love with the tone from either pick-up  – Hard not to play an LP flavoured guitar and think Kossoff, Green, Moore and Jo Bo and with that in mind, then PRS have certainly delivered a guitar that captures so much of this magic – Maybe it is  pity that such a guitar needs to capture and deliver the old school vibe, but if you want a more ‘modern’ vibe then PRS suggest the Custom 22 or 24 models – The 594 is old school influenced but it somehow feels more slick – Don’t forget the two partial coil tap options on each tone pot – Are they exact DNA replicas of a classic pre-CBS Strat ? – No – But they are far superior to the traditional thin nature that you hear on many humbuckers with a split/coil tap option – They are certainly useful for funky rhythm chops and at least allow a humbucker based guitar to deliver something towards the SRV style blues licks and Texas shuffle/walking bass lines – In my opinion they work far more effectively with less gain and/or no gain – This is a guitar that is loaded with tone and expression

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Guitars4You is not another corporate high street guitar store - My selection of premium grade guitars is about quality not quantity. Every guitar has been selected, inspected and approved by me, with particular attention to the set-up and playing performance. Every sale, phone call, email and mail order transaction is handled by me. A journey that is now over 40 years old, has fuelled my knowledge, experience, love, devotion and passion for exceptionally fine guitars.