If you ever wanted to know what an aged finish would look like on a USA PRS model, then browse the pics of this PRS Studio – A used model from 2011 with a black gold burst V12 finish – It has seen plenty of action and played, as they should be, on a regular basis – So no shortage of wear and tear and some might say ‘played in’ character – I dare say the home based player who is looking for an ultra clean, case queen, has already moved on – Yet, if you are in the market for an exceptionally fine PRS, that you can play on a regular basis, without giving it the kids glove treatment – No fret wear to worry about – All the hardware, pots, switches etc function as they should, so the only wear and tear is to the finish – When I acquired it, some of the nicks on the mahogany neck were deep enough in that you could feel them with your playing hand – Such marks have now been ‘filled’ then cut back, along with the top surface of the V12 finish, to ensure it feels smooth and played in – The ‘natural’ coloured finish will always ensure such ‘touch up’ marks will be visible, but the feel is nice and smooth – Only a neck refin with a solid finish would eliminate any touch up work, so the pics make it look far worse than it is – Equally I’m sure no potential buyer would want to feel the nicks as they burn up/down the neck – Re-strung with a set of 10-46 gauge strings and set-up with a slinky action that responds to a light touch – No tags, but if you wanted any verification, or additional info, then look inside the bridge pick-up cavity and the modcat bar code label will supply you this info – No PRS case as apparently that went along time ago – But it does include a deluxe PRS padded gig bag – Recently PRS re-introduced the Studio back into the catalogue with a price tag that sits around £4000 – Taking into account all the above I believe this Studio is now well priced at £1799 – Before I go any further then click here to read a good review of the PRS Studio by Dave Burrluck, courtesy of Guitarist Magazine, then click here to read a review courtesy of PrmierGuitar.com
Please read on to discover more tantalizing details regarding the PRS Studio
- Whole guitar weighs 9lbs and 2oz
- One piece mahogany body Figured maple top with plenty of flame + character
- V12 black gold burst finish
- Bird inlays 22 fret
- Rosewood fingerboard
- Mahogany neck with pattern thin neck profile (measures .825″ around the top nut end and .893″ around the 12th fret
- Nickel hardware inc PRS tremelo and locking tuners
- 57/08 Narrowfield pick-ups neck/middle 57/08 bridge humbucker
- 5 way blade switch
- Master volume with treble bleed cap + master tone control
- Push/pull partial coil tap on tone pot
- Re-strung with 10-46 gauge strings + set-up with a slinky action that responds to a light touch
The PRS Studio was launched late 2010, to deliver a guitar with staggering versatility, coupled with all the fine ingredients and workmanship that ensures the wonderful PRS playing experience is all present and correct – Tone, emotion, soul, fluid playing action, effortless string bending, impeccable build quality and attention to detail and don’t forget smouldering beauty – PRS have taken some of the features from the best selling Custom 22, plus McCarty models, tweaked a few details, then added a few new components and hey presto the PRS Studio is born – The thicker mahogany body is taken from the McCarty model- The additional depth ensures the guitar will retain plenty of depth, warmth and soul – Perched on top of the mahogany body is a delectable flamed maple top, which in turn receives the V12 black gold burst finish – The next tweak concerns the neck profile – One of Paul Reed Smith’s priority is to ensure that any PRS guitar instantly feels nice and playable the second you pick it up, to deliver a playing experience that does not inhibit your playing technique/potential – This model features the ‘pattern thin’ profile, which was an updated version of the wide/thin profile – Yes it retains a comfortable amount of girth to it, so as not to compromise tone and sustain, but the slimmer profile ensures a fast, fluid and comfortable playing action along the whole 22 fret fingerboard – The fingerboard edges are ‘rolled’ to add to the comfort and ‘played in’ vibe, that you’ll no doubt feel as you rip into some tasty licks – 22 medium jumbo frets are correctly installed, profiled and polished to perfection to allow effortless and controlled string bending, so much so that a set of 10’s still feel nice and slinky – The fret work, in conjunction with the PRS top nut, ensure excellent intonation, so even complex jazz chords still sound in tune above the 12 fret – Hardware is a set of PRS locking tuners, which in-conjunction with the PRS modern fulcrum tremelo, ensure excellent tuning stability – The tremelo has a nice positive and smooth feel about it, whilst both the saddles and trem block are milled from brass to again enhance tone and sustain – Only serious heavy dive bombers may find any tuning issues with this trem package, so in normal hands it works with out any problem
Now on to the tonal package – The two 57/08 Narrowfield humbuckers, along with the 57/08 humbucker are controlled via a 5 way ‘Strat’ style switch, along with a master volume and tone pot, with a push/pull partial coil tap option for the bridge pick-up built into the tone pot – As an overview, the 57/08 Narrowfield pick-ups deliver more depth and body than you’ll find on a regular single coil pick-up, yet with far more clarity and smooth clear highs than can be found on a regular humbucking pick-up – The position 2 and 4 settings on the 5 way switch deliver those ‘out of phase’ quack style tones that Fender players no so well – Roll off the tone pot a touch and the neck pick-up has enough warmth and sultry qualities to deliver chilled out jazz/blues tones, yet with all the controls back on 10, the neck pick-up on its own is clear, rich and warm, with a tight focussed low end that suits both chord work and solo passages – Add some overdrive on the amp and the transparency of the Narrowfield pick-up’s ensure it works well on Texas blues shuffles and Little Wing style licks, hence less muddy than a humbucker, but remember the taper of the pots is so good, that as you ‘roll off’ the tone control, then darker/moody voices are available to you – Furthermore the volume pot works smoothly over the whole 1-10 range, which enables you to clean up an overdrive amp setting, hence so much more soul and emotion is immediately available to you
The PRS 57/08 bridge humbucker has a vintage based output, hence clean tones are warm and smooth with plenty of body and articulation – Add some subtle overdrive for blues and boogie style riffs and again subject to how you work the tone and volume pots, the guitar will respond and deliver a throaty bite that snarls, or it can be softer, as required – Furthermore, for those big Who style power chords that zing and cut through the mix, this pick-up is ideal, or indeed clean up the amp a bit and either on its own or in-conjunction with the middle pick-up you can get some great jangly 60’s style pop rhythm tones out of it – Turn up the overdrive into a hi-gain/classic rock setting and this puppy sings with so much musical character and works well with all the regular Gary Moore, Paul Kossoff, Joe Bonamassa, Santana and Van Halen styles – As an overview, the Studio is more of a Gibson guitar than a Fender guitar, but whereas a Les Paul delivers the obvious LP tones and nothing more, the PRS Studio allows you to obtain some of those classic Gibson tones, yet at the same time delve into single coil flavoured tones – Extremely versatile is the key word here and with a suitable amp it will work in many musical environments
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